Category Archives: Healthy Life

We learned life’s best lessons as a child…

…but somehow, as adults, we forget the simple lessons that life has taught us.  This image spoke to me today. Each and every one of us has our own inner power. Whether you’re an athlete, business owner, or trying to take control of your lifestyle, the simple fact is YOU have the power to be great. Everyone has the power to do great things. The willingness to “just do it” is what separates the people who wish they could and those who actually are doing it.

What is holding you back? Are you holding yourself back? Are other people and negative influences around you holding you back? Why aren’t you doing something you want to do?  “Where there is a will there is a way. Great accomplishments can happen with hard work, personal drive, a goal and a dream.” Kpl 🙂 

#peachykeenlife #healthylife #businesslife

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#Healthylife Wild Salmon

On this #filetFriday I am featuring one of my favorite filets — Wild Caught Salmon! Salmon is very easy to make and loaded with Omega-3 and Vitamin D.   Today I prepared mine with a tbsp of raw honey, some cayenne pepper and a slice of lemon. Cook on 350 degrees for 16 minutes and voila! Complement your salmon with a tasty side of broccoli, green beans or asparagus. 

When purchasing salmon you should always choose wild Alaskan salmon or Wild Sockeye Salmon instead of farmed salmon. This great article on WildForSalmon.com explores the large differences between the two types, but in general farmed salmon are fed horomones, are more susceptible to illnesses and have a higher mercury rate than wild salmon. Often, the salmon served in restaurants is farmed unless stated otherwise in their menu. 

My family purchases the wild sockeye salmon at Costco. Kirtland brand of 3 pounds of wild sockeye salmon filets runs  around $30. 

It’s easy to eat “green” #tastythursday #peachykeenlife

Happy St. Patrick’s Day! Today, I have decided to eat all naturally green inspired meals today. For breakfast I made my own lime flavored greek yogurt.

  
A great way to keep your yogurt tasty and healthy is to buy it unsweetened and add natural juice or real fruit to it. A lot of popular name brand yogurts aren’t very healthy — there is a lot of added sugars and unnatural sweeteners. My personal favorite is greek Fage yogurt because its cows are not fed antibiotics, greek yogurt has natural probiotics to help prevent ‘leaky gut’ issues, and is high in protein to keep you feeling full. 

Adding Fresh-squeezed juice from limes, lemons and oranges to greek yogurt tastes dreamy — I add stevia to get a little added sweetness to the greek yogurt.

Enjoy St. Patty’s Day! Kpl 🙂

Epsom salt baths = heaven #waterwednesday

Experts say you should drink half of your weight in ounces of water each day. To ease sore muscles and to alleviate stress, however, experts suggest soaking in a bath with epsom salts.

  
What exactly is epsom salt? It is magnesium sulfate, and it has dozens of health and beauty benefits. To use epsom salts in a bath, just add two cups to a bath tub of warm water, soak for at least 20 minutes and enjoy.

Epsom salts reduces inflammation and muscle pain, reduces stress,alleviates itching from rashes or poison ivy, and helps your body to better absorb magnesium. Soaking in epsom salts helps removes toxins from your body. Epsom salts can also be used as an additive to hair conditioner to make your hair fuller, an exfoliating cleanser (when added to your normal facial cleanser). 

For an added treat, I add 10 drops of lavender essential oil to my bath water. A bag of epsom salts generally costs about $4-$5 for a four pound bag, or you can buy two 5 pound bags at Costco for around $8. 

Happy soaking! Kpl 🙂

Thin Mint Cookie inspired protein shake #tastytuesday #peachykeenlife #healthylife

It is girl scout cookie time, and if you are anything like me, it is so hard to say no to the angelic faces selling you the cookies. It is even harder to resist the cookies themselves! 

  
This is one of my favorite protein shake recipes and it tastes just like a thin mint girl scout cookie! I listed the organic ingredient option since I am an organic buff but you may certainly substitute for standard product.

Remember we are 12 weeks away from bikini season! Want to get in shape? Join one of my workout challenge groups and I’ll help you get there. Click on the healthy life tab!

Kpl 🙂

National Nap Day #healthylife

Today is National Nap Day! And I am a firm believer in the power nap. A power nap can be 15-20 minutes long, and it will energize your body, make you more alert and increase your performance better than any soda or coffee can! It also gives your mind a ‘time out’ to reboot without ruining your night time sleep routine.  

So make a date with yourself mid-afternoon! Close the office or home door and get your 20 minute power nap!

Kpl 🙂

#fridayfavorites Sweet Potato Fries (Yam) 

  
Sweet potatoes are a delicious healthy treat. Packed with vitamin A, vitamin B6, vitamin C, iron, potassium, beta carotene and magnesium.  Unlike white potatoes, a sweet potato releases its sugar more slowly which prevents sugar spikes. 

My favorite sweet potato recipe?  

Cajun sweet potato fries. 

Cajun-spiced sweet potato fries baked to crispy perfection. Simple, healthy, fast and packed with spicy-sweet flavor! Just 9 ingredients!

2 large sweet potatoes, scrubbed clean (organic when possible)

2 Tbsp olive, canola or melted coconut oil

1/2 tsp sea salt

1.5 tsp garlic powder

1.5 tsp smoked paprika

1.5 tsp dried oregano

1 tsp dried (or 2 tsp fresh) thyme

1/4 tsp black pepper

1/4 tsp cayenne pepper*

OPTIONAL: 1 Tbsp sugar of choice (coconut + cane are best)

Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.

Leave the skin on and cut sweet potatoes into thin, even match sticks with a very sharp knife.
Transfer to two baking sheets and drizzle with olive oil. Then sprinkle with seasonings, sugar and toss.
Transfer fries to 1 large or 2 baking sheets and arrange in a single layer to ensure they crisp up.
Bake for 15 minutes and flip/stir to cook on the other side. Bake for 10 to 15 minutes more, or until brown and crispy. You’ll know they’re done when the edges are dark brown and crispy.
Remove from oven and either serve as is, or drizzle with a bit of maple syrup or honey to offset spiciness (optional).
* If you aren’t into super spicy foods, just scale back on the cayenne a bit for slightly less heat without sacrificing flavor.
* Cajun spice mix adapted from bon appetite .

Nutrition Information — Serving size: 1/3 of the recipe Calories: 265 Fat: 9.8g Saturated fat: 1.4g Carbohydrates: 43g Sugar: 1.2g Fiber: 6.7g Protein: 2.7g
One of the ladies in my challenge group shared this recipe with me. (A challenge group is a virtual place where we come to check in when we finish out workout, share recipes, provide encouragement and inspire each other to be better people. If you are interested contact me or visit the ‘healthy life’ tab!)

Kpl 🙂

Lupus Flare #tbt Listen to Your Body!

It has been a few years, but I woke up today with a horrible lupus flare. In May 2005, six months after I got married, I was diagnosed with SLE systemic lupus and lupus nephritis. At that time, I could barely walk and was in so much pain it felt like my whole body was on fire.
Thanks to a great team of doctors, my lupus has been in a remission for the past eight years thanks to a daily cocktail of medications. Every now and then, though, my body will remind me that as much as I think I may be in control, I’m not. I know the next few days I will have to deal with stiff joints and muscles, walking slow, and feeing exhausted. But I know if I adjust a few things this week, I should be fine in a few days.
I can’t stress enough how important it is to listen to your body and have conversations with your doctor. When you know something isn’t quite right, follow these tips:
(1) If you don’t feel quite right and your instincts tell you something isn’t right, tell your doctor. Having an open line of communication with your doctors is critical to keeping you on the road to recovery. When I first got sick, I knew something wasn’t right and my first rheumatologist blew me off. When I was admitted into the hospital, I was introduced to a new rheumatologist who I credit with saving my life. 
(2) If a doctor doesn’t believe you, get another opinion or two. There is only one you — and you know your body better than anyone. 
(3) Doctors don’t always have all the answers. Doctors are there to help, but they ‘practice’ medicine, and they will tell you that too! 
(4) Don’t play doctor — there is a reason why they do what they do. For example — some people will go to the drugstore and buy cough syrup when they are sick. However, more than often, people buy medication for symptoms they don’t have. That’s not a good thing! Check with your doctor before self medicating for any potential interactions or allergies.
Kpl 🙂

Do you need a social media detox?

In today’s media driven world, do you want a simple detox that tastes great, doesn’t require you to eat any different foods or more water, and is guaranteed to shed weight? Well, here it is! It’s a one day social media detox — you simply unplug!

  
Think about how many hours a day you spend on the internet. What exactly do you do? During the week I use it for work purposes, but at night I am typically on Facebook learning more about my friends than I ever wanted to know, reading tabloids about people who don’t even know my name, and watching shows that will likely be cancelled in a few years. (My husband — well, he loves the 20/20 and Dateline shows about people who have been murdered who he has never met and whose families have no idea he is watching it!)

Why do we waste our lives away with all of this information? Think about the person who tells you more than you want to know — isn’t your first reaction “TMI,” too much information? That information is the extra weight, weighing you and your ability to focus on bettering your own life and situation. What if you took that approach with your social media and television? Last weekend my husband and I spent a day going around town, running errands and enjoying the beautiful weather. We both felt so refreshed when we came home even though we had walked 5,000 steps! 

  
I challenge you, this week, to take one day to unplug. No social media, no TV…music is ok. The next day, see if you feel more relaxed. This is why I typically unplug on Sundays. The Lord said that we should keep ‘the Sabbath day holy,’ so no work on Sundays. (Unless I have a wedding, which are typically at a church anyways, so hopefully God sees it as a good compromise!) Or choose A DAY this week to unplug — just from social media. I guarantee you will feel a lot less overwhelmed, you won’t compare your life to someone else, and you will focus on the beautiful life you have in front of you. And you will focus on making that grass greener for you, your family, and those you share your life with!

  
So who is ready for this detox? Kpl 🙂

What makes you happy!?!

  
For Pharrell, we know that ‘humming along’ makes him ‘happy.’ But what makes you happy?

I was spending so much time focusing on making other people happy that I have forgotten what makes my heart sing. As a result, I started becoming incredibly stressed out, irritable and unhappy. I love my bridal couples and wedding vendor friends, don’t get me wrong — but besides them, I didn’t have any other outlets besides my husband and my cat.

Last year, I connected with my friend Amy, and she and I talked about how I used to swim competitively during high school and college. I hated looking at myself in the mirror because I had picked up more than 70 pounds since college and I felt so sluggish. She told me that you make time for priorities, and 30 minutes a day could easily become a priority. That didn’t sound too hard, but I was concerned about my lupus putting up a fight. (That’s largely where the weight came from — the drugs that saved my life.) She encouraged me to try anyway, and I started doing Les Mills Combat and embarked on a healthy eating routine. One year later, I am now 40 pounds healthier, have a great virtual support network, and have a passion for eating clean and organic. 
Before opening the wedding planning business, I used to perform and work on the production team for community theater. I sang as a cantor at our church, and in the past I had sung the national anthem at the Xavier Men’s Basketball homecoming game, the Buffalo Sabres, the Toledo Mudhens and the Cincinnati Mighty Ducks. I wanted to have a career in musical theater at one point. So what happened? Why did this passion leave my life? Music and theater had always been such a great creative outlet for me.

The lessons I learned this past year? Simple — in order to take care of others you need to take care of yourself.

(1) You make time for things that are priorities. If you really want to make a commitment to do something you will find the time. There are 24 hours in a day — eight are spent sleeping, ten are spent working, two are spent eating — what will you do with the remaining four? How will you spend your 32 hours of your ‘awake time’ on your days off? That is up to you!

(2) Set boundaries. If you don’t someone else will for you. Saying ‘no’ isn’t a bad word, it is simply a decline.

(3) Make a date with yourself each day. Whether it be a 30 minute workout, meditation, journaling, bubble bath, a walk in the park, cooking to music — it doesn’t matter. Make a date with yourself each day. I carve out ‘Kathy time,’ which is time for me. I spend it alone doing something to make my body or spirit feel better. It is a great opportunity to recharge your battery and regroup to tackle the rest of life’s stressors the rest of the day!

What about my singing and performing bug that was inadvertently squashed? Jim and I recently rejoined our church, and I asked the office manager to tell the music director that I was interested in cantoring again. Her email back said ‘he’ll be so happy to hear you’re back, we need good cantors!’ It’s a start, right? I also hear there will be auditions for a show at the Sharonville Cultural Arts Center soon that will require an Atlanta accent! 🙂

Don’t worry … Be happy now! (Ooo… ooo, ooo, ooo, Ooo, ooo, ooo, ooo, Ooo, ooo, ooo, ooo….don’t worry…are you humming along?)

Kpl