Surviving the Holiday Feeding Frenzy

Surviving The Holiday Feeding FrenzyIt’s that time of year again when many of us throw our nutrition and exercise plans out the window!

And we all know the result…an extra 5 or 10 pounds and a major panic attack in January. For those of you under the age of 30, that New Year’s Resolution of yours will take care of things. For those of us over 40, it’s a little more complicated.

What to do? Here are some tips on enjoying good holiday food without packing on the pounds…

1. Practice mindful eating

One of the best things you can ever do for yourself is to learn how to eat mindfully. With roots in Buddhist teachings, mindful eating means paying close attention to the taste, texture, and “mouthfeel” of every bite you take – of slowing down and savoring every single bite.

Mindful eating also means paying attention to internal cues for hunger and satiety and heeding those cues as often as possible. Studies show that mindless eating almost always results in excess calories.

Here are a couple of excellent articles on mindful eating:

2. Stay active

Weight gain can occur with as little as 100 extra calories a day but working out can keep that from happening fairly easily.

I usually plan a longer workout the days before or after a big event to balance the extra calories I consumed. Exercise can also help you manage stress which is likely to come in handy during this time of year.

Here are a couple ways to make exercise fun and easy:

3. Eat regular meals

Many people skip breakfast thinking they are saving a few hundred calories but this practice is ineffective in promoting weight loss. In fact, studies show that people who skip meals frequently are almost always overweight.

By eating regular meals you are much less likely to overeat at parties or when surrounded with yummy holiday food. Sit down and have a balanced meal three times a day; don’t eat in the car or in front of the TV. Have a small snack before going to parties or gatherings where you know there will be lots of food.

I always drink my Shakeology for breakfast so even on the days when the rest of my meals aren’t as healthy, I at least got one great meal in for the day!

Here is how I keep my holiday eating in check:

4. Modify holiday recipes

Many cookie recipes can easily be made with less fat or a fat substitute, like canned pumpkin or applesauce. I have been experimenting with making recipes vegan and so far they have all tasted AMAZING!

Many recipes, you can easily shave a few hundred calories off of each meal without noticing any difference in taste or texture.

I have lots of modified recipes in my weekly newsletter!

5. Don’t drink your calories

One of the easiest ways to gain weight is to drink excess alcohol, soda, or any kind of sweetened drink. Even fruit juice has a fair number of calories and should be consumed in moderation. Choose sparkling water or a natural low calorie beverage when possible.

Most of all, remember what the holidays are all about…being with friends and family. You can enjoy your Holidays and Year End Celebrations without loading up on fat, sugar, and alcohol!
If you want any support or accountability, I have ongoing online support groups for health, fitness, and weight loss!

Join our community…

And love yourself enough to live a healthy life!

Happy Holidays!

See you soon!

How I Became A Faster Runner

How I Became A Faster Runner | Kirsten McCayI wanted to share this for those of you who are new to running or struggle with it. It gets easier and you will get faster!!! I started running in 1999 when I decided to try a triathlon. I hated it, it was hard, and I was slow. The worst part was that I was an aerobics instructor so I was actually in good shape, at a normal weight, and in my late 20s. Running should have been easy for me, or so I thought.

After my first tri (the run was 2 miles) I was hooked on triathlon, but still rarely ran because I didn’t enjoy it. In 2001 I decided to sign up for an ironman distance triathlon where I would have to run a marathon. I decided I better start running!!!

After 10 years of racing I still didn’t like running, but I was slowly (emphasis on slowly) getting faster. Some seasons I did a little speed work, some seasons I ran more miles per week, some seasons I did stepmill and hills, some seasons I ran mostly on the treadmill, but all seasons I kept running. Other than a 2 year break, I have been consistently running between 10-60 miles a week. My average I would say is 25 a week over the past 19 seasons of triathlon.

This year I have PRd my 5k, 10k, half marathon, and ironman marathon. And last night I just PRd the mile. Before last night my fastest mile was 6:04 in 2005. Last night, 12 years later at the same race, I ran. 5:52. I am 44 years old and am still getting faster. And I can finally say, after 19 years of running, that I finally like running.

The 4 things in my opinion that have helped me get faster this year are:

1. Last year I lost 10 pounds and this year I lost an additional 5.

2. 3 years ago I became 100% plant based so my body recovers more quickly so I can train longer and harder more consistently. This year I am eating more raw foods which are nutrient dense and low on inflammation.

3. I race as much as possible to learn how hard I can push my body before I crack.

4. I now have confidence as a runner so I can start a race a little harder and with a faster group pushing me to go faster to keep up.

So if you’re struggling, if it’s hard, if you hate it but want to like it, stick with it. Once it’s easier for you, you will enjoy it more. Once you enjoy it more, you will do it more often, and in return get faster!!!

One last thing…

You need a good reason to want to run or you won’t lace up or get out of bed at the crack of dawn or head outside after a long work day. Why do you run? Why do you want to be a runner? Figure it out and make sure it’s a compelling reason, like at least an 8 on a scale from 1-10.

I want to be able to compete at a high level in my age group in triathlon. On a scale from 1-10 that’s a 10 on importance to me. So I get up and get running so that I can accomplish that!!

What is your reason to run????

Hope this helps any of you struggling today!

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How I PRd my Half Marathon

How I PRd My Half Marathon - People always tell me they want to be a runner but they hate running. They ask my advice on how they can like running more. Here is what I say…Last weekend I ran my 83rd half marathon. I ran my first one in 2001 when I decided to train for my first ironman.

At that time I was 29 years old and the longest I had ever run was a 10K…once! And BTW…at that time (and for the following 10 years) I pretty much hated running. I did it because I liked triathlon and if I wanted to be competitive in my age group, I had to run. So I did.

People always tell me they want to be a runner but they hate running. They ask my advice on how they can like running more. Here is what I say…

1. If you truly hate running, find another form of exercise that you love or you will never do it anyway! Or you may do it short term but never stick with it long enough to enjoy it or get the benefits running offers.

2. If you hate it but have a strong “why” you want to do it (my case) then keep running.

3. The more you run, the easier it is.

4. The longer you run, the easier the shorter runs are.

5. The faster you run, the less time you spend running a certain distance, and therefore feels easier.

6. The less you weigh, the easier running is.

7. The more nutritious your meals are (lots of fruits and veggies), the more energy you have, and the more energy you have, the easier it is to run.

In summary: Run more, run longer, run faster, eat better, maintain an ideal weight for you, and running will be fun and easy! Once it is fun and easy, you will like it more, maybe even love it!

No short cuts, no secrets, just do it…like most things in life you are successful with!

So basically that is how I PRd my half marathon. That and it was a flat course at sea level.

Over the past 15 years of my running career, I have had ups and downs: injuries, digestive issues, and a love/hate relationship with running to name a few. I even took 2 FULL years off and didn’t run a single step about 9 years ago.

But in the past 3 years, I have consistently been getting faster and improving my running times following the guidelines I posted in this article. I want to place at the top of my age group in my triathlon races this year and qualify for the Ironman World Championships in Kona, HI (my why).

I am doing a running streak at least a mile a day (I’m on day 57…running more)

I have now done 67 marathons including a series of 7 marathons in 7 days (running longer)

I am incorporating 30-60 second ALL OUT intervals on all my treadmill runs (running faster)

I have lost 5 pounds this year from last year so I weigh less, and I am 100% vegan now and eat more raw fruits and veggies throughout the day so I have more energy and recover more quickly so I can run longer, faster, and more often

So that’s it! The secret is out!

Here are a few other articles that may help you with your run…

Making Running Easier, With Interval Workout!

http://www.foodfitnessfinancefun.com/fitness/making-running-easier-with-interval-workout

I didn’t even really like running…until today!!

http://www.foodfitnessfinancefun.com/fitness/i-didnt-even-really-like-running-until-today

Advice For Your First Marathon

http://www.foodfitnessfinancefun.com/fitness/advice-for-your-first-marathon

How I Trained For 7 Marathons In 7 Days

http://www.foodfitnessfinancefun.com/fitness/how-i-trained-for-7-marathons-in-7-days

I can’t hear about how much you LOVE running at this time next year!

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See you soon!

Fun Holiday Fitness Challenges

Fun Holiday Fitnesses ChallengesI’m not a religious girl, so Christmas isn’t an important holiday for me. I do love that I get to see my family for a week straight, including my sis and her kids from Cali that I don’t get to see as often as I would like. I also like the parties that the holidays bring, and by parties, I mean my fun workouts I create around the holidays.

On Xmas Eve, my friend Wendy and I swim 100×100. If you aren’t a swimmer, 100 yards is 4 lengths of the pool, so we do that 100 times. Usually we do it on an interval with breaks and equipment changes every 10-20 100s, which is also how we keep track of our laps. With pee, drink, and Shakeology breaks, this usually takes about 3 hours.

I love doing this on Christmas Eve morning for 4 reasons…

1. There usually isn’t much going on in the morning for me since I don’t “do” Xmas

2. I get a little anxious around the holidays so this helps me release pent up stress

3. I burn a lot of calories so I can eat my magical sandwich (or 2 or 5) that evening

4. To inspire others to do something good for YOU before you spend a day typically catering to others or dealing with family, travel, friends, in-laws, traffic, shopping, cooking, cleaning, and other overwhelming activities that are made even more stressful when many people are doing these tasks all at once

Have I convinced you to start a tradition to do a swim (or other fitness) challenge in the future? If so, here is how to get started…

1. Pick your challenge. I would choose something where you move to burn calories AND energy (stress). I would choose something you LOVE to do so that the years you feel overwhelmed at having ANOTHER thing to do that day, you remember it’s something that you love and you will do it anyway. I would also choose something that is DOABLE (with your time frame and abilities) but is CHALLENGING (so that it excites you and gives you a feeling of accomplishment).

2. Round up at least one other friend to do it with you. The more the merrier. Not necessarily to physically do it with you, but at least to hold you accountable. This year Wendy is in Georgia and I am in Colorado, but we are still both committing to doing it “together” virtually.

3. PLAN in advance (as far as possible) and schedule it into your calendar. Check to make sure you have all the logistics far in advance. About 2 months ago I asked at the gym to make sure they were open Christmas Eve morning and for enough time for me to do my swim (and 30 minutes on the bike for my bike streak). If they weren’t, I would have checked the hours for the next closest pool. Set yourself up for success from the very beginning.

4. Commit to doing it NO MATTER WHAT! No excuses! Tell your friends and family (or whoever you will be with that day) that you aren’t avail until whatever time you are scheduled to finish.

When you take time for yourself and keep your boundaries set, you will inspire others to do the same (whether they are upset with you or not).

5. Have a blast. Make it fun! Reward yourself with something important to you! I like to get my hard work out in so that the rest of the day when I am sitting at my mom’s house just hanging out with the fam, eating, and not lifting a finger, I know I have already done enough to stave off stress and overwhelm, and I have burned enough calories to sit around and eat my insanely delicious sandwiches!

Oh…and in case you were wondering about those sandwiches…

Every year our family tradition on Christmas Eve is “sandwich bar” where we put out anything you could possibly imagine having in a sandwich and we all make our own. We pretty much eat these all eve and well into the night and next day. My special AMAZING sandwich is Dave’s Power Seed Bread (http://amzn.to/2h7XHeh), Natural Peanut Butter (http://amzn.to/2hoULHD), Strawberry Just Fruit Jelly, and Kettle Brand Krinkle Cut Sea Salt Potato Chips (http://amzn.to/2id9kOF). #promo

Try it and let me know if I am a genius or what!!!

Happy Holidays if that’s something you do this time of year!

Join our swimming group for more fun (and shorter) swim workouts…

https://www.facebook.com/groups/IHeartSwimming/

See you next year!

My Dream Job

My Dream JobOne of the exercises I do with the coaches on my Beachbody team is to help them come up with their dream job. This would be the job you would have if you could do anything but still had to have a job.

This is hard for most people at first because we aren’t taught to “think outside the box” or “dream big” so we typically think of jobs we have had or believe we can have.

These don’t usually work as our dream job because (unless you already have your dream job) if you have had it or believe you can have it, you would probably already have it!!

I ask a few questions like “if money weren’t an issue, what would you do all day” or “do you know anyone who has your dream job” or “what are your favorite things to do” and these help prompt some answers. But usually most people still struggle with coming up with something until I share mine.

My dream job is to get paid to do what I would be doing each day anyway. This includes sleeping, training, racing, helping others build a business, writing out training plans, writing out meal plans, writing blog posts, listening to podcasts, making healthy foods, and helping people online, through social media, and through text reach their health, fitness, nutrition, career, life, happiness, and relationship goals.

All the things I just listed are things I would do each and every day whether I got paid to do them or not. As it turns out, I get paid to do about half of those things! Lucky me right? Nope, not luck! I have been working on the exercise of creating my dream job for about 10 years now, baby steps, and over time my life is looking more and more like I want it to look. Of course there are still things I would change, but I’m working each and every day to change the jobs I don’t want into jobs I do want. And it all started with KNOWING what my dream job is.

The whole reason I was thinking about this today is because of something that happened this past weekend. I ask for sponsorships for races so I can race more. A business or person will pay my race entry fee, and in return I will promote their business or cause in my newsletter, on my social media, and to my network. This is an example of my dream job. I am getting paid to race. For the payment, I do what I would normally do anyway!

I got a message from someone on Facebook wanting to sponsor me for an upcoming race. When I asked what she wanted me to promote, she said “Nothing, I just want to thank you for the help you have given me with my fitness and nutrition.” WHAT? How AWESOME is that??? THIS is my dream job. To do what I was doing anyway (sharing and helping on social media) and get paid for it (in the form of a race entry, which I would have paid for anyway)!! #dreamjob

Take some time today to think about your dream job. If you don’t know where to start, answer the 3 questions I asked earlier. Write down your answers. Make a list of all the things you do each day that you love doing. Start to open your mind to ALL possibilities, not just what you were programed to believe about what a job should look like. Visualize yourself DOING your dream job every single day. And then take action DAILY (even super small actions count…remember baby steps are still steps) in the direction you want to go.

I would love to hear what YOUR dream job is! Comment here or share with our community at…

www.Facebook.com/FoodFitnessFinanceFun

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See you soon!

Advice For Your First Marathon

Advice For Your First MarathonLast week I had someone send me this message on Facebook: I am running my first marathon this weekend, do you have any advice?

YES! Don’t ask for advice 5 days before your first marathon!

But seriously…

I am running my 64th marathon this weekend so it’s safe to say I am a marathoner. I am happy to give any advice and share my experiences to help you have a great first (or 20th) marathon. Since I’m sure this woman isn’t the only one looking for advice, I thought I would share with you (and expand on) what I wrote to her.

Before I get started, I just wanted to share that you should have your marathon race day prep (mental, physical, and emotional) all planned out more than 5 days in advance, so you wouldn’t even need (or want) to ask someone else their advice. I help my clients work on this from the very beginning of their training. Sometimes even a year before their race. A marathon is a mental event. Running 26.2 miles is very physical, don’t get me wrong, but if you aren’t prepared mentally, when it gets hard, you will stop. So it’s important to train not only physically, but mentally as well for the event.

So based on my 15 years of marathoning, here are my top 3 pieces of advice…

Follow a plan and practice your race day nutrition. Whether you find a general training plan online or hire a coach to write you out a specific training plan custom to your needs, you need to follow a plan. WHY? Because it will give you the best chance for success. The coach writing out your plan knows how to train you for your specific race. If you follow the plan, you will complete your race and most likely hit your goal. Left to your own devices, emotions, commitments, priorities, doubts, etc will creep in to your mind and body and sabotage your marathon.

Within this training plan should be mental training AND nutrition training. You will want to practice on your long training sessions your race day nutrition plan. Elite athletes may be able to run a marathon on 4 cups of water and 1 gel, but you and I can’t. We will be consuming some sort of calories during the 3-6 hours it takes us to run and unless we have practiced during training, our bodies won’t respond well during the race. Trust me on this one!!

Enjoy the process. The process of training your mind and body to run 26.2 miles is life changing. Whether you started off as a runner or not, you will finish as a runner. This transformation is exciting and I don’t want you to miss a beat. This is also important because your race may not go as planned! Let me re-phrase that…your race probably will not go 100% as planned.

Life is unpredictable. Weather is unpredictable. And our bodies are unpredictable. You can train exactly as planned, have your nutrition dialed in, taper perfectly, and then wake up race morning with a migraine or a sore throat. Nature may toss you into a snow storm or a heat wave. You may get a cramp or twist an ankle or any number of random things could happen before or during your race.

If you have a bad race or don’t make your goal, and you DIDN’T enjoy your training, you are going to be disappointed, frustrated, and possible out of the sport for good. If you have a bad race but you loved your training and everything it took to get to the starting line, then you will walk away with experience, lessons learned, and excited to do the next one. Trust me on this one too!!

Have fun! There is no point in taking the time, energy, and effort it takes to train and race a marathon if you aren’t enjoying yourself. Especially on race day!

Get there early, take a selfie, meet people, tell others to have a great race, smile for the camera, sing a song, when someone passes you tell them they are looking strong, if you pass someone encourage them to keep moving, make up a rhyme to count down the miles, thank a volunteer, just enjoy yourself.

Believe me, at mile 20 you will be feeling so much better if you are having a good time. And again, if your race result wasn’t what you wanted, at least you had fun! And possibly made a few new friends.

I hope these are helpful! If you have any specific race questions or want a custom training plan, email me at coachsmith@usa.com

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See you soon!

Follow a plan and practice your race day nutrition and pacing during your long runs. Enjoy the process just in case your race doesn’t go as planned. Have fun!

Making Running Easier, With Interval Workout!

Making Running Easier, With Interval Workout!I love running…when I am in a race! Any other day, not so much. Let me rephrase that…I love the feeling when I am done, but it’s always so hard for me to start.

Today I had an hour run on my schedule. My goal was to get in 5 miles. Not because it takes me 12 minutes to run a mile, but because it usually takes me a while to convince my body that it wants to run.

Here is how I do it…

1. Schedule a time to run. I have nothing else on my schedule from 2-3 today except to run. So nothing to keep me from running! No excuses!

2. Start with something you feel like doing. Today my legs are tired. I don’t feel like running at all! But I want to watch ‘Scandal’ and jogging at an aerobic easy pace sounds doable for me.

3. Set a low goal that is doable. Today I can run 10 minutes and then if I hate it, I’ll walk 10 minutes and see how I feel after.

4. If you are really not in the mood, pick your fave distraction. As mentioned above, I want to watch ‘Scandal’.

5. Just start!!! Ok, I’ll watch ‘Scandal’ while I jog for 10 minutes.

6. One of three things happen…

  • I feel good after a mile of jogging and I keep going
  • I feel crappy after a mile so I walk the next 50 mins at a high speed or incline
  • I feel great and decide to pick up the pace and add a few intervals

If intervals are on my schedule and I don’t have it in me, I will play a lot of games on the treadmill like 30 seconds fast, 30 seconds walk, 1:00 easy jog, repeat or alternate with 1:00 fast, 1:00 walk, 2:00 easy. Typically next thing I know 30 minutes has gone by and the running endorphins have kicked in and I can continue at a higher intensity.

Here is a sample interval workout for you when you’re having a hard time getting going. PS you can do this outside too with estimates for your pace, I do this on the treadmill.

  • 10:00 easy jog/walk
  • 1:00 up .5 mph
  • 1:00 up .5 mph
  • 1:00 up .5 mph
  • 1:00 up .5 mph
  • 1:00 up 1.0 (this should be the max you can maintain for 1:00 knowing you will have a rest after, his may take a few rounds to get this right)
  • 4:00 walk
  • 1:00 back to easy jog

Repeat, make adjustments as needed until the 1:00 interval is hard but doable. With a 10:00 warn up and cool down, 4 rounds of this equals an hour! WHAT? Time flies when you are having fun!

For a new workout in your inbox weekly…

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Happy Running!

See you soon!

My Top 11 Blog Posts from 2016

My Top 11 Blog Posts From 2016 - Food, Fitness, Finance and FunThe reason I started my blog about 2 ½ years ago, was to share my life experiences in hopes that they would help others going through the same issues. The reason my blog is all about food, fitness, finance, and fun in your 40s is because those are the 4 issues in my own life I struggle with the most. I know there have got to be others like me out there, so I am putting my life out there in hopes of connecting with other like me. We are not alone!

So when I get an email from someone saying “Thank you so much for writing this, I seriously thought I was the only one who felt that way” or “OMG it’s so nice to know someone else out there thinks like me” (btw…both actually taken from emails I have received), I get SUPER excited because I know I am making a difference in the life of that ONE person, and that is what I want.

Writing a personal blog is scary. Sometimes I feel like an idiot for failing and screwing up and not learning a lesson until the hundredth time, but if my experiences can help someone else feel not so alone or help them so they don’t have to go through the same hard time, then the trepidation I had to publish my inner most feelings and emotions goes away.

So THANK YOU for loving me for ME and not because I have accomplished something or did something spectacular, but because I am human and flawed and need love and connection as we all do!

I was reminiscing about 2016 and looking through my posts from the past year. I wanted to share with you my top 11 of the year. The reason they are my faves is because they are the ones that gave me the most response from others that they appreciated the post. And the reason there are 11 is because 11 is my favorite number!!

So without further ado…

MY TOP 11 POSTS FROM 2016…

Homework: Do. It. Now!!

Homework: Do. It. Now!!

Vegan…FINALLY!

Vegan…FINALLY!!

Happy Birthday Joey | A Doggie Love Story

Happy Birthday Joey | A Doggie Love Story

Baby Steps: Saving Money

Baby Steps: Saving Money

5 Easy Ways to Drink More Water Each Day

5 Easy Ways to Drink More Water Each Day

You Can Eat Healthy Anywhere

You Can Eat Healthy Anywhere

Eat Your Junk Food With Purpose

Eat Your Junk Food With Purpose

Homework: Set Your Priorities

Homework: Set Your Priorities

5 Super Simple Weight Loss Tips

5 Super Simple Weight Loss Tips

Homework: Do What You Love

Homework: Do What You Love

I Crashed My Car and I Didn’t Cry

I Crashed My Car and I Didn’t Cry

Thanks for being a part of my amazing life <3

I hope you decide to make 2017 your best year EVER!!!

See you soon!

Dave Ramsey Baby Step 3…DONEZO!!!

Dave Ramsey Baby Step 3…DONEZO!!!HOLY EMERGENCY FUND! I never thought we would get past Baby Step 3. I am talking about Dave Ramsey’s Baby Steps to Financial Success. We have been following Dave Ramsey’s plan loosely for about 8 years now but pretty seriously for about 3. Baby Step 3 is to have a fully funded emergency fund.

Fully funded means 3-6 months of expenses set aside in case of an emergency. My original goal was to have it fully funded by September 1st , but we actually didn’t get there until December 1st . Three months doesn’t seem like a big deal in the grand scheme of life, but it felt like forever for me since we had a ton of setbacks along the way.

LUCKILY the setbacks were nothing serious (like medical bills) but just “life” happening as it does. Car troubles, home repairs, etc.

The hardest part for me is that my husband and I are not always on the same page with money. He doesn’t believe in “saving for the future” where I want to save to alleviate stress and anxiety that I associate with lack of money.

One of our biggest setbacks in the 15 months it took us to build our emergency fund was a trip my husband took to Ireland for a month. He planned far enough in advance to save enough money for the trip, but ended up spending twice as much as budgeted. His reasoning is that he was only going to be there once so he wanted to do whatever he wanted while he was there.

I have a different mentality in that if I get to do something awesome, I have to give up some of the luxuries in order to get to have the experience in the first place. For example, if I am paying for a race far from home, I typically bring all my own food and sleep in my car to offset the cost of the race and gas to travel.

Another issue that came with the same trip was that he got a big bonus from work that he was going to use to paint the house. When he decided he wanted to use it for his trip instead, that was fine. It was his bonus he could spend it as he chooses.

I just mentioned that since he was using it for his trip, we couldn’t get the house painted until next year when we saved for it. He agreed. Until he came back from his trip and said we had to get the house painted. Again, I would have waited and saved, but he said it was important to the longevity of the house and if we waited we would have to replace rotting wood, etc.

At times it was frustrating since we have different philosophies about money, but in the end we accomplished our goal…a fully funded emergency fund!! On to Baby Step 4 which is to put 15% of our income into an IRA.

This has also been a cause of friction between us, but in the end, he trusts Dave Ramsey so he is moving on to saving for our future. By this time next year my goal is to have our IRAs maxed out each month and be paying double on our mortgage each month (which is Baby Step 5).

I can’t wait to feel relaxed and secure in our financial situation. This is a far cry from the way I felt even 5 years ago and am grateful for all I have learned from Dave Ramsey along the way.

Check out his book here…

http://amzn.to/2hHysjf

Join others working toward financial freedom here…

https://www.facebook.com/groups/FinancialFreedomROCKS

Here’s to a prosperous 2017!!

See you soon!

Homework: Plan Ahead For Success (MyFitnessPal)

Homework: Plan Ahead For Success (MyFitnessPal)Typically during the holidays or stressful times or when I’m not training for an ironman, I gain weight. I tend I eat too much and not work out enough. The times where I am successful are short lived and usually I attribute it to relentless planning and discipline. This month I decided to take my planning to the next level for my best chance for success.

I love the app, my fitness pal, and have been using it for the past 3 weeks in a way I hadn’t in the past.

Here is what I have been doing to assure my weight loss/maintenance during stressful times…

1. Put the myfitnesspal app on the bottom row of my phone (dock) so it is always in view when I open my phone so I wouldn’t forget

2. I started utilizing the bar code feature to make my entering food way faster and easier so I would be more likely to use it when I was busy

3. I scheduled time each night before bed to enter the following day’s meals and exercise to make sure they balanced each other out

4. If/when my calories in didn’t balance my calories out, I would make adjustments to the following day’s schedule regarding food and exercise

5. I made this process a high priority for the month of December. In turn, there were only a handful of days where I exceeded my calorie goal. This is the best I have ever done as far as weight loss/maintenance during the month of December. I am excited to repeat this in the months next year when I am traveling, overwhelmed, busy, or anxious. I am slowly becoming better and better at life and am excited to see where I will be a year from now!

Happy New Year!

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