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You Need To Liberate Yourself From The Numbers In Life That Define You.

Allow your children to feel powerful. We are all meant to shine, as children do. The underlying definition of our standardization in the schools is set to the lowest common denominator. The public school system has been attempting to create a level of conformed education. This doesn’t bode well for creativity – or the fact that 1 out of every 67 kids is on the spectrum. (which that number growing)

Yet tests are a part of life and career… even as an artist you are tested in life in some ways. So how do you enhance that creativity while trying to help prepare your children to pass the “tests” of life? I encourage you to help your children understand what testing is, and what it truly means – because it’s not about getting 100%. Those with 100% often are just good a memorization… I know that from experience. Instead help them understand that we are the ones that hold the power in who we grow into. Not some number on a test.

Maybe even as parents we need to hear this even more. WE need to stop being the doormats that we tend to be because we are fearful of someone thinking we aren’t the “image” of perfection that is expected. Just like a test, you aren’t defined by a number on the scale, a size in your pants, the numbers on your paycheck, the number of friends on your Facebook feed. You are an amazing individual and as such, you should believe that within you is everything you need to overcome all of the obstacles in your life – and that everything about you is what makes you this. YOU need to liberate yourself!!

Let go of those fears that the numbers have created.

“Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness, that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented and fabulous?
Actually, who are you not to be?

You are a child of god. Your playing small doesn’t serve the world.

There’s nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won’t feel insecure around you.

We were born to make and manifest the glory of god that is within us. It’s not just in some of us; it’s in everyone. And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.” ~Marianne Williamson

You Really Are What You Eat

I do love my vitamins, especially when they come from nothing but whole foods! Recent dietary research has uncovered 14 different nutrient-dense foods that time and again promote good overall health.  Coined “superfoods,” they tend to have fewer calories, higher levels of vitamins and minerals, and many disease-fighting antioxidants.

Beans (legumes), berries (especially blueberries), broccoli, green tea, nuts (especially walnuts), oranges, pumpkin, sea vegetables. cold-washed non-gmo soy, spinach, tomatoes, gluten-free oats, and fermented non-dairy products can all help stop and even reverse symptoms that so many of us are dealing with. And where one might have an effect on a certain part of the body, it can also affect the health of other body functions and performance, since the whole body is connected.  With these simple whole foods as the base of a balanced, solid diet, weight loss gimmicks and other fly-by-night programs can become a thing of the past in your life.

Conversely, the ill-effects of an unbalanced diet are several and varied. Low energy levels, mood swings, tired all the time, weight change, uncomfortable with body are just a few signs that your diet is unbalanced.  An unbalanced diet can cause problems with maintenance of body tissues, growth and development, brain and nervous system function, as well as problems with bone and muscle systems.

Symptoms of malnutrition include lack of energy, irritability, a weakened immune system leading to frequent colds or allergies, and mineral depletion that can trigger a variety of health concerns including anemia.

And since the body is connected, realizing that an unhealthy body will result in an unhealthy spirit only makes sense.  When we nourish our body with these superfoods and complement them with other nutrient-dense and healthy fresh foods, our spirit will be vitalized and healthy as a direct result.

Many modern diets based on prepackaged convenience foods are sorely lacking in many vitamins and minerals, which can affect our mental capacities as well, and cause irritability, confusion, and the feeling of ‘being in a fog’ all the time.

Superfoods can be the basis of a sound, healthy, nutritious solution to curing many of these ailments and more.

Seeds of Success – How Looking Backwards Reminds You Who You Are

Looking Backwards

This morning I was on the computer and looking for something in the old backup server and I came on the old life coaching site from over ten years ago. What a blast from the past. I was doing more business coaching then, and life coaching was more about image coaching rather than that deep sort of program that I use with clients now. But what I found was by looking backwards I found more of myself. Parts of myself that I had forgotten long ago.

I found a page of my old coaching website that was called Seeds Of Success and I wanted to share it because I think we are so quick to be hard on ourselves within the journey we are on.

“Where You Are… Isn’t the place where you are going to stop, but should be remembered. ” ~ Barbara Christensen

Seeds of Success – 

I give thanks for this day. I know that I have not yet accomplished all that I can and if that is the reason I am bathed in the fresh dew of another dawn, I am most grateful. I am prepared at last to face today’s challenges.

I will forget yesterday with all of its trials and tribulations, aggravations and setbacks, angers and frustrations. The past is already a dream from which I can neither retrieve a single word nor erase any foolish deeds.

I will resolve, however, that if I have injured anybody through my thoughtlessness, I will not let this day end before I make amends and nothing I do today will be of greater importance.

I will not fret the future. My success and happiness do not depend on straining to see what lurks dimly on the horizon but to do this day what lies clearly at hand. I will treasure this day for it is all I have. I know that its rushing hours cannot be accumulated or stored like precious grain for future use.

I will live as all good actors do when they are on stage, only in the moment. I cannot perform at my best today by regretting my previous acts mistakes or worrying about the scene to come.

I will embrace today’s difficult tasks, take off my coat and make dust in the world. I will remember that the busier I am the less harm I am apt to suffer, the tastier will be my food, the sweeter my sleep and the better satisfied I will be with my place in the world.

I will free myself today from slavery to the clock and calendar. Although I will plan this day to conserve my steps and energy, I will begin to measure my life in deeds not years, in thoughts not seasons, in feelings not figures on a dial.

I will remain aware of how little it takes to make this a happy day. Never will I pursue happiness because it is in not a goal just a by product and there is no happiness in having or getting only in giving.

I will run from no danger I might encounter today, because I am sure that nothing will happen that I am not equipped to handle. Just as any gem is polished by friction, I am certain to become more valuable through this day’s adversity and if one door closes, another will always open.

I will live this day as if it were Christmas, I will be a giver of gifts and deliver to my enemies the gift of forgiveness, my opponents tolerance, my friends a smile, my children a good example. Every gift will be wrapped with unconditional love.

I will waste not even a precious second today in anger or hate or jealousy or selfishness. I know that the seeds I sow I will harvest because every action good or bad is always followed by an equal reaction. I will only plant good seeds this day.

I will treat today as a priceless violin. One may draw harmony from it and another discord, yet no one will blame the instrument. Life is the same in that if I play it correctly it will give forth beauty, but if I play it ignorantly it will produce ugliness.

I will condition myself to look at every problem that I encounter today as no more than a pebble in my shoe. I remember the pain so harsh I could hardly walk and recall my surprise when I removed my shoe and found only a grain of sand.

I will work convinced that nothing great was ever achieved without enthusiasm. To do anything today that is truly worth doing I must not stand back shivering and thinking of the cold and danger but jump in with gusto and scramble through as well as I can.

I will face this world with goals set for this day, but they will be attainable ones not the vague, impossible variety declared by those who make a career of failure. I realize that life always tries me with a little first to see what I will do with a lot.

I will never hide my talents. If I am silent I am forgotten. If I do not advance I will fall back. If I walk away from any challenge today my self-esteem will be forever scarred. If I cease to grow even a little I will become smaller. I reject the stationary position because it is the beginning of the end.

I will keep a smile on my face and in my heart even when it hurts today. I know that the world is a looking glass and gives back to me the reflection of my own soul. Now I understand the secret of correcting the attitude of others and that is to correct my own.

I will turn away from any temptation today that may cease me to break my word or lose my self-respect. I am positive that the only thing I possess more valuable than my life is my honor.

I will work this day with all my strength content in the knowledge that life does not consist of wallowing in the past or peering anxiously at the future.

It is appalling to contemplate the great number of painful steps by which one arrives at a truth so old so obvious and so frequently expressed. Whatever it offers little or much, my life is now!

I will pause whenever I am feeling sorry for myself today and remember that this is the only day that I have and I must play it to the fullest. What my part may signify in the great whole I may not recognize but I am here to play it, and now is the time. I will count this day a separate life. I will remember that those who have fewest regrets are those who take each moment as it comes for all that it is worth.

This is my day, These are my seeds. Thank you for this precious garden of time…

Adapted from Og Mandino’s Mission: Success!

Excuses and Fear Are Out Of Here I Simply Fit Challenge Week One

Simply Fit Challenge Week One


Six week challenge starts tomorrow, and this first week is all about tackling all of those excuses. It seems that over the last year I have become the Queen of excuses. The FitBit scale let me know… and apparently I don’t work well with old school manual scales. It was shocking!!
It’s about health, and when I focus on health then the weight will come back off… I know that.

At least I can’t lie to myself any more about what the old manual scale says I weigh. As a Certified Personal Trainer and a Certified Nutrition Therapy Practitioner I want to hang my head in shame, but I won’t. I won’t attach shame to anything that is attached to me. I am amazing. I just had to pull myself together and I’m saying goodbye to the garbage. I have gained over ten pounds in the last 14 months… and it’s okay. Goodbye to those ten pounds, because I am going to give them up. I don’t know need them to be my partner in fear… I am over that.

I have been very quick to make excuses since the miscarriage. Sort of like I made excuses when I had my daughter. I had to realize that when she was four it was no longer ‘baby weight‘. Excuses are rationalizations we make to ourselves about people, events and circumstances like weight, relationships, career, and so much more in our lives. These excuses are invented reasons we create to defend our dysfunctional behavior, to neglect taking action, or simply as a means of negating responsibility… and believe me that many of us have a lot of that held onto issues about responsibility. It either makes us control freaks, or afraid of success and being responsible for others.

I have been living with LOADS of excuses. And in fat what it comes down to is these reasons:

  • Fear of Failure/Success/Responsibility
  • Fear of Embarrassment
  • Fear of Change {Who Moved My Cheese}
  • Fear of Uncertainty
  • Fear of Making Mistakes
  • Perceived lack of confidence or resources {Like not having enough… been there too}


To eliminate excuses from our lives we must first look at eliminating all traces of fear. And that was my word for the year, Fearless. And so it’s time that I’ve spent half the year going after many of my fears, now it’s a big big fear of failure, wrapped tightly in a big fear of success!Do they have an AA program for that? One for those of us that are GREAT at coaching others to get through these issues, but SUCK air at getting down to business when it comes to ourselves?

I am going to let go of those fears because I have a lot of them. I fear that I won’t get back to the size that I used to be. I fear that if I get back to the size I used to be I will go back to the person I used to be… and I didn’t like that girl very much. She was a bit of a bee-och. I fear that I will be very successful and more clients will look to me for answers. I fear that I will grow an extremely large business organization and I won’t be able to support them.

The best day of your life is the one on which you decide your life is your own. No apologies or excuses…The gift is yours—it is an amazing journey—and you alone are responsible for the quality of it.” ~Bob Moawad
So I am looking at myself today as a person who is ready to say goodbye to my excuses. I am going to say goodbye to a person that fears becoming something more…. it goes back a lot of years, this fear, but I am ready to take it on. I know I’m not a size, and I think of myself as such. It stands in the way of my wellness goals. It stands in the way of being the best mom and wife I can be. It stands in the way of going after things I know that I want to go after. So that is what this is all about this week. Taking on those fears.
Today it ends. Fears be gone. I am enough. I am going after my dreams. Are you ready to take on some fears? Get over some insecurities? Be the person you are meant to be?? It’s going to be hard, but you can do it, and so can I! Let me leave you with a little behind the scenes from the farm and leave you with a smile on your face!!!

My Problem With Extreme Fitness Junkies

My Problem With Extreme Fitness Junkies

I just started a closed group for men and women that lift weights. The other group I am in I get so tired of hearing them talk about how they lifted and then they did a huge cardio workout. Or they did back to back lift workouts… and I’m thinking if you lifted properly you have nothing left to give. LOL!!! Am I right?

My Problem With Extreme Fitness Junkies I Paleo Vegeo I Barbara Christensen CPT

See, as a certified personal trainer my recommendations to clients is always to remember that A) larger muscles require longer recovery time, B) the more muscles your workout, the longer required recovery time, C) fast twitch muscles recovery more slowly than slow twitch fibers. D) age matters. 

Recovery is indeed important, however if you supplement properly, and sleep well, and if your nutrition and technique are on point, you can be conditioned to train often with little or no days off. There is one study I’m closely watching where they are showing that although Intense, eccentric resistance exercise causes muscle damage, soreness, inflammation, and a loss of muscle function, a protein-amino acid supplementation before, during, and following damaging resistance exercise may reduce muscle damage and accelerate recovery. And so we’re seeing that it’s the aminos, not necessarily the protein (think of all that bacon we see on paleo posts) that matters for body recovery. 

One study did show specifically that BCAA (branch-chain amino acids) administered before and following damaging resistance exercise reduces indices of muscle damage and accelerates recovery in resistance-trained males. So I totally agree with your statement of recovery and nutrition matters. 

Now back to my original issue, the problem that I see is that most people do not do any of the needed recovery items that they should do.A lot of those at the gym or working out at home do not do the needed warm up or stretching when their muscles are warm. Flexibility matters. With aging, functional movement ability, core stability and flexibility are all key. And then they think that major amounts of cardio are good for you, which we have found is so untrue. I swear if I see one more post about how someone did their leg workout and then did another 25 minute HIIT workout I may scream. If you can do more than stand on your wobbly legs after you have finished workout on leg day, I really think you need to pick up more dang weight!! 

We’ve become this EXTREME nation, and we take a program that is meant to be 25 minutes of hard cardio, and then do it two or three times a day, seven days a week on top of resistance training and it drives me batty. LOL… even the most recent studies are showing that aerobic exercise initially generates more reactive oxygen species (ROS), and even anaerobic exercise may induce prolonged ROS generation. So as we think we are getting healthier, and we have all of these untrained folks out there telling others how to get “fit”, there is this cringing part of my being that wants to hit them all over the head. 

Weight loss is a good thing, but not at the expense of our underlying health. Skinny people too die from heart attacks, and thin people can lack oestrogen among other things. A problem for women that we don’t address in the fitness community. Researchers analyzed nearly 100 studies that included more than 2.8 million people. While obese people had a higher risk of death — particularly those whose BMI was 35 or more — overweight people had a 6% lower risk of death than those of normal weight. So I think we need to really think about why that is. You’d think smaller=healthier. So what are we doing as a “skinny” community that is causing us to be unhealthy? I want to really get people to see that the science it approaching a less is more approach to weight loss and physical fitness, for health, and that you will still lose weight, and still can do things to strengthen your heart, your bones, and your body. Anyone for the Fast Workout approach to cardio, and the Slow Lifting Method for weights will give you a run for your money when it comes to health you crazed overachievers.