Staying Healthy On the Go

Summer is coming, which means more laid back, longer days & traveling, which may mean a lot of eating on the go, or dining out.  While it may be challenging to stay completely on point with your nutrition when you're not at home, there are some little things you can do that will make a HUGE impact.  

Below, find some of my favorite healthy hacks while on the move!


→ WATER WATER WATER!  This is #1!!  Dehydration can lead to fatigue, constipation, headache and dizziness.  And who wants that?!

→ Baby carrots, snap peas, celery sticks, baby sweet peppers and/or grape tomatoes

→  Apples, clementines, blueberries or/or bananas all travel well.  Frozen grapes are great for car trips and double up as ice packs for the cooler!

→ Unsalted, pre-portioned nuts (1/4-1/3 cup)

→ Vegan protein powder + power greens + a travel blender and/or shaker cup

→Bars.  Most bars of filled with funk.  Below find some of my faves.  You are ideally looking for a bar with a small ingredient list, and more protein grams than sugar grams.

 >> Epic Bars (for carnivorous peeps)

>> JERF Bars

>> KIND Bar (look for the varieties that have more protein than sugar grams, like this one)

>> rX bar

>> Lara bar (high in sugar, but a whole fruit bar with no added sugar or funk)

 

 

Consider making before you go...

Banana Oat Cakes

On the Go Oats

 

For hotel stays longer than 2 days...

Stock your mini fridge with:

→Unsweetened, lowfat Greek yogurt

→ Snacking veggies (see above)

→ Hard fruits

→ Hummus or guacamole

→ Seltzer water (love la croix!) 

 

When dining out...

These tips inspired from my friend and mentor, Ashly! 

→  Do your homework. Look up the restaurant menu beforehand. Find the nutrition info and mentally commit to ordering a healthy option. The more you know, the less likely you are to choose an unhealthy dish!

→ Focus on Fiber, Fat & Protein.  This is easy to do when you are focusing on a MAGIC PLATE.  This is a tool I use with my clients!  Download your free PDF HERE.  

→  Ask for modifications.  Don't be afraid to ask your server for modifications to make any meal healthier!

  • Grilled instead of fried

  • Steamed without butter/oil

  • Sauce on the side

  • Vinaigrette instead of creamy dressings

  • Mustard instead of mayo

  • Brown rice instead of white rice

→ Don't go hungry!  When you are ridiculously hungry and your stomach is growling, you will most likely house the bread basket before even thinking about what to have as your meal...and then regret it later! So if it can be avoided, don’t go to a restaurant when you are starving! Have a light, fiber filled snack (and water!) before you go!

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  • Entrée portions are usually 2-3 servings, so ask for a box as soon as your meal arrives. Pack half of it to go; out of sight, out of mind.

  • Order a soup and a salad OR a salad and an appetizer instead of an entree.

→ Pass on bread, chips, and biscuits.  One breadstick at the Olive Garden is 140 calories, and let's be honest, who eats just one?! Biscuits come in around 160 calories and are loaded with tons of fat. Skip them and save your carbs for a better choice! (like red wine ;)

  • Restaurants typically give a double serving of dressing, so always ask for it on the side.  Take the prongs of your fork, dip them into the dressing, then your salad. You will get all the flavor, but half the calories and fat.

 

If you are flying...

Pressure changes can lead to back up and bloat, so I also recommend taking digestive boost daily to keep things moving.  This stuff has literally saved my life more than once. I shit you not.  {pun intended} Learn more about it here.    

 

And, lots and lots of water!

Dehydration can lead to fatigue, constipation, headache and dizziness.  And who wants that?!

 

Wherever you go...

Stay active!  

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Look into community classes offered in the area you are visiting. Many gyms and studios offer great daily/weekly rates for travelers.  If weather permits, get outside for a run or a hike, or get out on the water to paddle or kayak.  Fresh air is great for the body and mind.  

Another amazing resource is Beachbody On Demand, delivering hundreds of amazing workouts via live stream.  Access your favorite workouts on your phone, computer or tablet--literally anywhere with WiFi.  It goes where you go!   

 

REMEMBER: It’s the small, seemingly insignificant choices that add up over time and yield long-term rewards!

Happy and Safe Travels!

And, don't forget your Magic Plate download!


Ready to honor your body, feel alive and stay inspired in the skin you're in?  Let's connect.  Touch base with me HERE

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What is a Plant-Based Diet?

You guys! I’ve been getting so many questions around plant based eating—

So... I’m super excited to be offering this FREE so webinar around what exactly that means, and how this lifestyle can serve you!! 🍓

This might be a good fit for you if you:

🥑Are tired of dieting, obsessing about food, your weight and your pant size..

🥕Feel bloated or are struggling with digestive issues..

🍒Have brain fog, fatigue or a difficult time focusing..

🥝Have heard of a plant-based diet but feel too uninformed or overwhelmed to give it a try..

 

Space is limited, and will fill fast! Save your seat HERE:

 
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Can’t make it live? No worries. Register for a seat, and I will be sure to email over the recording!

In the meantime, drop your questions below! What do you want to knowwww?!
🍏🥝🥕🌶🍒🍅🍌🍍🍊🥦🥑🍓🥥


To honoring your body, feeling alive, and staying inspired in the skin you're in! 

Let's connect >>  Click here << 

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Meal Planning 101: Part 2

STEP #2:  MEAL PLANNING

Now that you are IN TUNE with your kitchen, here comes the fun part--planning what you are going to EAT!  If you love food as much as I do, this part is actually a lot of fun.  I get super psyched when I find new recipes for our family to try.  So, where do you begin?

 

ONE:  Always begin your weekly shopping list with your staples that need replenished.  This will likely also include things like milk, yogurt, bread, eggs...and whatever else you always have on hand.  (Refer to the list you made yesterday of your kitchen staples, too!)  

Then, use what you have** to inspire next week’s meals.  It’s important to start in the fridge, since this is what is most perishable. Leftover broccoli? A half block of cheddar?  Leftover quinoa?

Then, move to the freezer.   Frozen pizza dough?  A bag of spinach?  

And finally, the pantry.  Cans of black beans?  Tons of pasta?  

You are going to use THESE INGREDIENTS as the baseline for next week’s meal plan.  We are all well equipped to do this with the internet, so no excuses here.  We GTS (Google That Shit) or we use the index of our favorite cookbooks.  

Let’s go back to the example above.  I am looking up the keywords broccoli, cheddar, quinoa, pizza dough, spinach, black beans and/or pasta.  The recipes linked below are recipes that were inspired by doing just this.    Let’s see what what we can come up with….

**Have nothing to start with?  Use your grocer’s sales flier as your starting point!
 

Search one:  Spinach recipes.  Found braised coconut spinach with chickpeas and lemon (UM YUM) So, I look at the needed ingredients, add sun dried tomatoes to my list.  I think I will serve this over rice, but have that on hand, too!  

Search two:  Quinoa recipes.  There is an amazing recipe for Quinoa and Potatoes in my favorite cookbook, How to Cook Everything Vegetarian, by Mark Bittman.  I'm in this one for the win.    

Search three:  Broccoli recipes.  Found Broccoli and Sun-dried Tomato PastaPerfect!  This recipe hits most of ingredients on the head, so the ONLY thing I need to add to my shopping list is goat cheese.  

 

Search four:  Black bean recipes.  I make an awesome 4 bean salad that Ziggy loves.  That’s going on the menu this week.  I’ll add a bell pepper and purple onion to my list.  I have everything else on hand.  

And, you continue on searching, creating your menu, adding to your shopping list, and adding ONLY the ingredients you need to make these dishes.  Doing this will save you *money* *time* and will *minimize waste.* Bonus?  It adds to an ever growing list of new amazing dishes you can go back to!!  


 And sometimes, you just need to let your toddler be a human tornado, eat chocolate granola bars for dinner, and then watch cartoons wearing nothing but a yoga mat.&nbsp;

And sometimes, you just need to let your toddler be a human tornado, eat chocolate granola bars for dinner, and then watch cartoons wearing nothing but a yoga mat. 

Now before you call me crazy, know that we do not go all out on the cooking front every night.  I always look at our calendar and make sure to plan not-so-crazy meals on nights we are going to be home late or have a lot going on.  I find that there is almost one weekend night each week that we are attending a cookout, meeting with friends or family, or are going to be out and about, so there is one less meal to plan for. Breakfast is a go-to dinner option for us during the week.  So are tortilla pizzas with a side veggie or these rice bowls.

I often make a grain salad or big pot of soup on Sundays for lunches and/or dinner options.  We also do nights every so often we call “fend,” where Chris and I “fend” for ourselves and Ziggy eats lmac and cheese or frozen spinach nuggets.  

What we can't do:  create 26 hours in a day.

What we can do: Take time to MAXIMIZE what you already have at home, and taking 30-60 minutes each week to plan and create a shopping list, you will make the best out of the time and money you have when you are in the midst of the madness.  

I promise!


Need support?  Not sure where to get started?  Our next group program kicks off MONDAY!  Comment below, or send me a quick message HERE for everything you need to get started! 

 

In good health,

xo sarah

Health from a Place of Self Love: 4 Week Exploration

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It's almost summer!

In honor of the season of sunshine and growth, I invite you to embark on a journey of self-care, healing and rejuvenation.     

 

It is easy to put these things on the back-burner when you are focusing on the people that you love.  You want to bring our A game -- to be alive and engaged with them, which means it's easy to put yourself last.  

But here's the thing...

You can't bring your A game when you’re depleted, exhausted, overworked, over committed, and consistently putting your needs last. You cannot pour from an empty pitcher.

When you do, you AND your loved ones end up cheated. They don’t get the best version of you, they get a worn down, depleted, cranky, walking dead version of you.  You think you're bringing your A game, but instead are bringing your B, or C or D game.

You DESERVE to feel nourished, to have confidence, to have energy and a spring in your step!  For you AND the people that you love.

Are you ready?

This 4 week group coaching program might be a good for you if:

→ Feel confused about the best foods for your body

→ Are interested in approaching your weight and your health from a place of self love

→ Want to adopt mindful patterns around your health

→ Are ready to trade short term solutions for long term, sustainable solutions

 

This group program is designed to take the confusion about what to eat, provide a platform for mindful patterns around your health and create a foundation for long term, sustainable lifestyle change. No crazy pills, tricks, gimmicks, or diets of negative self talk.

Just real food, the real system, tools and support you need to approach your health (and your BODY) from a place of self love.  From this place, making food and lifestyle choices that serve you become easy!

What’s included:

>>(1) 1:1 60 Minute Coaching Session with Me. This session is designed for you to get super clear on your goals, what is holding you back, and actionable steps for you to begin taking to radically improve your health (and your life!)

>>(3) 60 Minute Live Group Coaching Sessions With Our Tribe.  For 3 consecutive weeks, we will meet at Cooper-Siegel Community Library in Pittsburgh, PA, where I share customized coaching exercises that are guaranteed to accelerate your results and help you achieve major breakthroughs.  These coaching sessions are designed to create a place of community and trust.

>> Online Support Community; to stay connected with our tribe throughout our 4 week journey.

>>Customized Done-For-You Materials Such As Checklists, Recipes, Handouts And More. Expect curated information that is relevant, practical and actionable, so you can stay out of overwhelm and in action!!

In order to give you the best possible coaching experience, space is limited! Applicants will be considered on a first come-first serve basis.

We kick off the week of June 3!

 

 

Still on the fence?  

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I get it.  It has to just be "another program."  Trust me, I've tried them all.  

Until a few years ago, I would let one “bad” choice lead to another...and the another. It was like the never ending cycle of judgement, kind of like this:

Eats a donut at work 👉🏼 says, well eff it, I just screwed up today 👉🏼 eats candy off friends desk 👉🏼 leaves packed lunch in fridge and grabs take out 👉🏼 eats cookie in the afternoon 👉🏼 gahhhhh I feel like 💩 👉🏼 goes home 👉🏼skips workout 👉🏼 has wine and an entire bag of skinny pop instead of dinner.

This cycle would continue sometimes for days, other times for weeks. It was the “being good or being bad” syndrome. It sucked 🤣

So now if I choose to have the donut I realize this a CHOICE, in which I am in control over..just like every other decision I make throughout my day. I approach it without judgement, but instead with curiosity:

1. So, I ate a donut. It was delicious. Moving forward! 

2. So, I ate a donut. And now I feel _______. What was I going for (or trying to cope with/cover up/avoid) by eating this donut? 

This is what I help my clients to do, and I want to help you, too!!

What I've learned through through this time, and in my own personal health journey, is that there are as many “diets” as there are people on the planet.  Do I have it all figured out? Nope. I am still learning, still listening to my body every day. And, compelled & driven to help others learn how to listen to theirs.  What you learn about YOUR body and YOUR habits during this program will change your life!  

 

What clients are saying...

 
 Jan K., Pittsburgh, PA&nbsp;

Jan K., Pittsburgh, PA 

"I had been realizing that I needed and wanted to make some changes in my lifestyle.  I had fallen into habits of self-neglect, especially in terms of thoughtful and nutritious meal planning.  I know that, to make a significant change of any type, it's hard to go it alone.
It felt like perfect timing when I received an email invitation from Sarah to join her 6-week group coaching program.  .In this first meeting, I was quickly drawn to Sarah's contagious enthusiasm in sharing her areas of expertise and passion.
I am filled with appreciation for Sarah and for her consistent and loving guidance.  It was also of great value to have this experience in a communal forum. The group's camaraderie greatly enhanced the experience, allowing us to share our challenges, learnings, inspirations and celebrations with one another.
I have re-discovered the good feeling that comes from truly caring about my well-being, by  making self-care a consistent and joyful priority. I am well on my way.
If you are ready to welcome some topnotch and fun coaching, on your way to optimal health.........treat yourself to a collaboration with Sarah."
 
 Sarah T., Pittsburgh, PA&nbsp;

Sarah T., Pittsburgh, PA 

"There are so many accomplishments I'm proud of that started during this jump start. In addition to weight loss, I'm most proud of the "non scale victories." In just six weeks, my blood pressure dropped from being in the "high" category to just being slightly elevated. It was so amazing to celebrate this victory with my doctor at my last check up and our hope is that the changes I've made will eventually mean I can go off high blood pressure medication!
The biggest change for me is that I finally feel in control. I am acutely aware of the decisions that I make with regard to my nutrition and my body -- no longer do my choices send me into the cycle of guilt that eventually results in giving up on myself. Let it go. Move forward.
A new habit Sarah instilled in us is to "re frame" self-limiting beliefs that naturally creep up. I catch myself thinking "I don't have time" and hear Sarah's voice saying "wait, let's re frame that" and I land on something like "there's always enough time for what is most important."
In this program, you are not alone. The level of knowledge and trust that Sarah brings is, without a doubt, the most important part of this journey. Not only is she knowledgeable and authentic, she is also funny, honest, real, and trustworthy. As a result, she brought out those characteristics in all of us in the group.  The group that started together in January became very close, and we continue to rely on each other to celebrate victories (however small), re frame all the negative crap, share recipes, and to move forward!
This is not for someone who wants "microwave results." This is a "slow cooker" program that's more about the sum of a lot of small changes then a quick fix that can't be sustained!"
 
 Abby I., Pittsburgh, PA&nbsp;

Abby I., Pittsburgh, PA 

"This program allowed me to refocus my thoughts about food and how to best fuel my body. I've never considered myself an un-healthy eater, but I think we all have patterns that revolve around food, some of them healthy and some of them definitely not. I also just feel so in-tune with my body.  I have learned that my body will tell me when I am doing something that serves it and when I am not. I am now much more capable and wanting to react to those messages now after this program.
I no longer depend on coffee in the morning for my energy, but rather my food choices that compound over the days.  I am doing less stress/boredom eating, and if I do, I am able to choose more nutritious, high-energy foods that make me feel better afterwards instead of worse. I stopped using my hectic work schedule and social life as an excuse to put my health on the backburner.  These habits I've started make my body feel amazing and they make me feel good about my body. This outlook gives me the ability to live my best life with confidence and vibrancy.
Overall, I feel happier at work and am in a much better mood.  I am sleeping much better, and feeding myself properly has flowed over into me taking care of myself more holistically- body, mind, and spirit.  The support and accountability that this group of women offered was really special. And of course, Sarah is always there to answer any questions and provide support! She is in it for the long haul --no quick fixes here!"
 

FAQ

What is Holistic Health?

Holistic health takes a WHOLE body approach to health and wellness, taking into account emotional and social factors, as well as incorporating whole foods and movement. 

What are your credentials? 

I began studying plant based nutrition in 2009, and began my online Health Coaching practice in 2015. I have worked with hundreds of clients across the, helping them to approach their health and their bodies from a place of worthiness, desire and self love

I studied and earned my Holistic Health Coach certification through Health Coach Institute, and am currently working to complete my Life Coach certification. I also hold 3 levels of Mat Pilates Certification, have 10 years teaching experience around the city of Pittsburgh and hold BA and MEd degrees in Education.

What makes this program different?

I hold the belief that my clients are their own best health experts. I see my role as providing resources, and opening up the avenues for YOU to tap into your intuition! My personalized coaching experience enables women to plow through the negative beliefs that are holding them back from truly loving themselves.  From this place, we choose to eat healthier, move our bodies with itention, maintain a balanced mood with increased energy levels, and live an overall vibrant life!  

When are sessions held? 

Initial 1:1 session is held over the phone.  Group sessions are held in a private space at Cooper-Siegel Community Library 
I'm not really sure if this is a good fit for me.  How can I learn more?
Schedule a complimentary Discovery Session, where we'll talk more about your goals, and discuss together whether or not this program is a good fit!

Meal Planning 101: Part I

How much was your grocery bill each week?  I shoot to keep our weekly grocery bill to around $130, and at least 50% of what we buy is certified organic.  Though sometimes a little bit over, and sometimes a little bit under, I am always within $20 of that budget.  

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STEP #1: GETTING IN TUNE WITH YOUR KITCHEN

So, here’s the deal guys.  If you don’t know what is lurking in the back of your freezer, pantry, or (eeek!) fridge, you’ve got to get your organizing on.   I {almost} always know what we have on hand, what is about to see its last day, what needs to be rotated into the freezer and what we need to buy more of.  This saves us time cooking/shopping, saves money, and eliminates waste.  It is an easy thing to do once you get in the habit of it, but where do you start?!  

ONE:  Clean house.  Take everything out, purge if necessary, and reorganize.  Literally.  Start with your freezer.  Take everything out.  If you find yourself saying “what’s that,” “ew,” “I can’t believe this was back there,” or “2013?!” THROW IT AWAY.  It is taking up valuable space for things that you are actually going to eat.  Repeat this task with your pantry and your fridge.     

TWO:  Take inventory.  As you are cleaning house, take note of what you have on hand through this process:  Pasta?  Quinoa?  Frozen chicken cutlets?  Frozen broccoli?  Carrots?  Kale?  Coconut milk?  Canned tomatoes? If you aren’t good at taking mental notes, WRITE IT DOWN!  This is an essential piece to effectively planning meals.  

Ahhhhhhh.  Don’t you feel better?!

THREE:    Now that you are organized, you are ready to conquer!  The next step is Identifying your kitchen staples.  These will vary from household to household, but it is important to know what need to have on hand in order to create and cook stellar meals.  My list includes ingredients that serve as the backbone for the majority of our meals. Take a minute and write down your essential staples.  Remember, there is not end-all-be-all here, this list will change and evolve as you do.  

What did you discover??

Stay tuned for part II next week! 

Nourished Life Mastermind: Women Supporting Women

The Nourished Life Mastermind is an inner circle of women who have completed 10-12 weeks of 1:1 OR group coaching programs with Sarah.  These women have built the foundation, and begun to lay the groundwork to continue to step into the very best version of themselves, in body and in mind!!

 So far, together, you have:

→ Identified high energy foods for your unique body

→ Identified YOU as the foundational piece

→ Plowed through self limiting beliefs that were holding you back from having the vibrant health {and LIFE} you want and DESERVE!

→ Obtained sweet freedom from judgement

→ Prioritized what is most important to you, HONORED it, and released guilt

 As you know, this is about so much more than simply losing weight or improving overall health. … that is certainly part of it, but really, a very small part. This Mastermind is for the women who have a desire to truly step into their ultimate greatness….TOGETHER !

 

We’ll see each other daily in the mastermind

We’ll meet monthly on webcall for group coaching

We’ll share ideas

We’ll motivate

We’ll celebrate

We’ll uplift

We’ll uplevel

We’ll support one other through MASSIVE GROWING PAINS

 

 It’s about staying tuned in week to week.  When you’re feeling stuck, to be guided to regained clarity on WHY you are doing this and to remain intuitively led,  which gets massive results in body and mind.

 

What’s included, in a nutshell:

Monthly group coaching sessions via webcall, the second Tuesday of every month at 8am-930am EST

Weekly mini coaching sessions via FB live in the private Mastermind group

Daily 24/7 access to private Mastermind group page, to ask questions, be supported, share ideas, and remain in a constant state of FLOW and ACTION

→ PLUS access to new programs and resources as they are launched, to “test the waters,” at no extra cost, including a free subscription to The Veg Out Meal Plan

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My vision for this group of women was about long-life friendships and relationships both in and out of our meetings—and it has come to LIFE!   The community continues to grow.

In the long term, I fully expect to end up DOING joint ventures, adventures, retreat, collaborations of all sorts, and referral partnerships within the group!

This is about being part of a group of women actively and consciously taking ownership of their lives & their health, on purpose, and having an epic time doing so.  

Let me know if you're a HELL YES!

The Truth About Conventionally Raised Meats in the US

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11 years ago, I adopted a plant based diet. A year after that, my husband Chris followed suit. A plant based lifestyle is all Ziggy (4) has ever known. 🌱

People ask me all the time WHY we chose to be plant-centered. After spending my entire life with meat as a mainstay to my diet, I began to educate myself about WHERE our food comes from. Turns out, it is much more complicated than "a steak comes from a cow." 🐄

US agriculture used to be what we picture in our minds, or see in children's books--livestock and birds, roaming freely, grazing on grass and snacking on bugs. You know, the big red barn with the silo. 🍃

 Are you ready for some real talk?

The sad truth is that the the majority of the US meat industry is produced on factory farms, and is consistently on the rise. Even many small family farmers practice small scale industrialization, just to stay in business 🐄🐄🐄🐷🐷🐷🦃🦃🦃🐔🐔🐔

So, close your eyes and picture big, giant indoor warehouses with no windows, no grass.  Better yet, click here to see what this looks like...

Animals in holding cells just big enough for them to stand, not even to turn around, or often times lay down. They most literally spend their short lives eating, standing in their own shit, and being pumped with antibiotics to ward off the host of disease that is result of such inhumane living conditions. 🏢

Chickens and turkeys spend their life in large, dark "barns." Egg laying hens spend their life in stacked in battery powered metal cages. This encourages the birds not to peck (which they innately do), or become aggressive with neighboring birds. Their beaks are often clipped for the same reason. Um hello?? I would be freaking out in those stressful living conditions too!! 😖

And becuase we want more white meat, they are pumped hormones to make their breasts big enough to satisfy our desire for them! Many become so top heavy that they topple over because they can’t stand on their own two feet. wtfffffff 😖

All of these animals all fed corn and soy, and unless labeled certified organic or GMO Verified, are genetically modified. This is fine in the sense that it keeps them alive, but it is not what their bodies were designed to eat. If they don't get proper nutrition, neither do we. I mean, what they eat, we eat. 😝

Don't even get me started in the negative impact this has on the workers in these factories, our environment, our water, our local economies and our health. 😳

What blows my mind is that many of us KNOW this, but choose to still choose to support it by buying conventionally raised meat, eggs, dairy and poultry.

We’re not vegan, and not am not necessarily suggesting that you become vegan. What I am suggesting 👉🏼 #educateyoself

You guys, every.single. time we buy is an opportunity to take a vote. We’re looking for the words GRASS FED, PASTURED or WILD CAUGHT on any fish, dairy, meat, poultry or eggs as often as possible. Even better to literally shake your hands with your farmer, and see the roaming animals when you can. 🤝🌾

Yes, it will be more expensive. We have a choice 👉🏼 Pay a farmer now, or pay a doctor later.

If it feels overwhelming, click here to get a glimpse of the industry, or watch Food Inc on Netflix, and then share what you learn by commenting below! 👇🏼

Read more about where to find local, responsibility raised food HERE.

#themoreyouknow


 If you're ready to learn delicious ways to incirporate more plants, and sustainable farming practices into your life, let's connect.  Find me HERE.  #bettertogether  

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2018 CSA SHARES: Get in on the Local Goodness

It’s that time of year!! Maybe you’re already signed up for this season, or maybe you’ve never heard about them. A CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) share is a local farm offering a certain number of farm “shares” of his/her crop to the public. These vary, and typically consist of veggies, but often times include fruit, eggs, cheeses, and even meat. Consumers purchase a share from their selected farmer and receive a predetermined quantity of the farmer’s crop regularly throughout the growing season. Even in Western PA, where we experience a relatively harsh winter, there are plenty of programs and shares to choose from 12 months throughout the year.

Why should you sign up for one?

Our eating and shopping habits are not just important for our health, but for our local economies, the environment, and the future of our food system. We cast a vote each and every time we buy. How and where we choose to spend our money is more important, and every dollar we spend creates a much greater impact than we realize. Nearly half (45%) of money spent within local markets will remain there. Compare this with a meager 13% of money spent in chain retailers, and it becomes evident that even the most modest change in spending habits can produce considerable economic impact. Eating seasonally can be hard off season, especially in these cold winter months in Western PA. It takes a little bit of creativity, flexibility, and a willingness to try new things. Bonus? Foods eaten in season are more flavorful and packed with more nutrients.

Outlined below, please find some of my family’s favorite summer shares in the Pittsburgh area. Not from Western PA? Check out  Local Harvest to find a CSA in your area!

BLACKBERRY MEADOWS ORGANIC FARM

-Weeks: 20

-Cost break down: Lots of options, ranging from Market Share Cards (like a gift card for the market), or $35-$42.50 per week depending on what your needs/interests are! 

-Extras: Winter shares, garden shares, market memberships, pork.  This year, they are also inviting CSA members to the farm house weekly to chop, roast, blanch, freeze and taste their harvest with farmers & others members!  They also host weddings and events at the farm!

-Pick up locations: On farm (Natrona Heights), Oakland (Phipps)

-Perks: Aside from being one of the only certified organic local farms in the area, Jen, Greg,  Evelyn and Olivia provide the most personal experience, hands down. They are present for all CSA pick ups, and you get to know them well.  They understand the importance of farm immunity and gut health, which is why they encouarge people to come out and spend time on the farm. They grow the best heirloom tomato you will ever taste, beautiful greens and garlic. These guys also team up with Four Frozen Farmers in December to sell Christmas trees at Construction Junction—a great way to support all facets of local agriculture!

KRETSCHMANN ORGANIC FARM

-Weeks: 25

-Cost break down: A few options, ranging from $20/$25/week, depending on what your needs/interests are! 

-Extras: Cheese, mushrooms, chicken, beef, coffee, winter shares

-Pick up locations: All over the city!! Kretchmann utilizes residential porch pick up locations, so the chances of a pick up location that is convenient for you is very good.

-Perks: Don and Becky grow tree fruit, which is hard to find grown organically in this area!

CLARION RIVER ORGANICS

-Weeks: 25

-Cost break down: small or large shares, ranging from $22-$32/week. 

-Pick up locations: All over the Western side of PA, ranging from Erie to Oakmont, and everywhere in between!

-Extras: Beef, pork, chicken, holiday extras, winter shares, meat shares

-Perks: Because they are a cooperative, you will see a lot of variety in these shares. These guys offer a lot of dry goods as well as canned goods with. Be prepared to find things like puffed spelt, spicy pickled green beans, and jars of stewed tomatoes in addition to fresh veggies and fruits.

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PENN'S CORNER FARM ALLIANCE

-Weeks: 32

-Cost break down: Lots of options, ranging from $120 for as little as 4 pick ups-$830 for the full 32 weeks, and everywhere in between.  ($18-270/week)

-Extras: Fresh cut flowers, eggs, cheese, pork, beef, lamb, gift baskets, winter shares. 

-Pick up locations: All over the city—definitely somewhere near you!

-Perks: Because they are a cooperative, you will also find a huge variety with this share. Penn’s corner works with more than 30 organic and sustainable farms around the state, providing a wide array of farm fresh goodies.

DILLNER FAMILY FARM

-Weeks: 22

-Cost break down: small, large and biweekly shares, ranging from $16-$25/week. 

-Extras: Eggs, Amish breads and cookies, extra quantities of vegetables and fruit, flower bouquets, pastured brown eggs, honey, cheese, jams, relishes, and frozen organic chickens.  

-Pick up locations: We actually host a pick up for Dillner, so if you sign up, you could see us each week ;) They also utilizes residential porch pick up locations, so the chances of a pick up location that is convenient for you is very good.

-Perks: These guys also have a farm stand located just off of Route 8 in Gibsonia. It is a one stop shop for seasonal veggies, fruits, seedlings/plants, eggs, bread, honey and locally canned goods. I made a biweekly trip here last fall for fall fruits, and purchased the most stunning wildflower seedlings in the spring for my garden! 

 

I have experience working with all of these farms, and am happy to answer any additional questions you may have!! There are sooooo many other options in Western PA, and definitley something that is a good fit for your family.  Explore options on localharvest.org.  

Please also share your knowledge in the comments below! If you are unsure, and want to test the waters before making a huge commitment, opt for a small share (typically half of what is offered in a regular share, or offered biweekly). If you don't mind getting your hands dirty, many also offer work share/volunteer opportunities for a share discount, giving you the opportunity to be part of the magic.

Our family counts down the days until the start of growing season—being part of a CSA takes the guesswork out of what you should buy to eat; Mother Nature chooses for you! All of the farms listed above are accepting shareholders for the 2018 growing season. So, what are you waiting for?!

**The photos above are all snapped from my camera.  Some from my own garden, others are all shots of local food from the area.**


Let's connect!  Contact me HERE anytime.

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6 Week Jumpstart: Spring Into Your Best You

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It's spring! 

In honor of the season of renewal, I invite you to embark on a journey of self-care, healing and rejuvenation.     

It is easy to put these things on the back-burner when you are focusing on the people that you love.  You want to bring our A game -- to be alive and engaged with them, which means it's easy to put yourself last.  

But here's the thing...

You can't bring your A game when you’re depleted, exhausted, overworked, over committed, and consistently putting your needs last. You cannot pour from an empty pitcher.

When you do, you AND your loved ones end up cheated. They don’t get the best version of you, they get a worn down, depleted, cranky, walking dead version of you.  You think you're bringing your A game, but instead are they get your B, or C or D game.

You DESERVE to feel nourished, to have confidence, and to have a spring in your step!  For you AND the people that you love.

Are you ready?

This 6 week group coaching program might be a good for you if:

Feel confused about the best foods for your body

You get bloated after eating

Tend to gain weight easily, especially in your belly

Have extra pounds that won’t come off with diet and exercise

Are interested in approaching your weight and your health from a place of self love

Want to adopt mindful patterns around your health

Are ready to trade short term solutions for long term, sustainable solutions

This group program is designed to take the confusion about what to eat, provide a platform for mindful patterns around your health and create a foundation for long term, sustainable lifestyle change. No crazy pills, tricks, gimmicks, or diets of negative self talk. Just real food, and the real system, tools and support you need to ditch the diet mentality, and begin to eat and live in a way that serves you!

What’s included:

>>(1) 1:1 60 Minute Coaching Session with Me. This session is designed for you to get super clear on your goals, what is holding you back, and actionable steps for you to begin taking to radically improve your health (and your life!)

>>(5) 60 Minute Live Group Coaching Sessions With Our Tribe. I will share customized coaching exercises that are guaranteed to accelerate your results and help you achieve major breakthroughs so you can see transformation in your health – and your life. These coaching sessions are designed to create a place of community and trust. Sessions are live, and recorded! 

>>Online Mini Course with 14 Day Cleanse
-- Detailed program guide with video tutorial
-- Food journal
-- Sample recipes and resources

>> Online Support Community; to stay connected with our tribe throughout our 6 week journey.

>>Customized Done-For-You Materials Such As Checklists, Recipes, Handouts And More; This group program doesn’t exist to give you MORE information; it exists to give you CURATED information. What that means is that what you can expect is information that is relevant, practical and actionable, so you can stay out of overwhelm and in action!! 
 

In order to give you the best possible coaching experience, space is limited! Applicants will be considered on a first come-first serve basis. 

We kick off the week of April 30!

 

Still on the fence?  

22780275_10212773897735724_655056277040123397_n.jpg

I get it.  It has to just be "another program."  Trust me, I've tried them all.  

Until a few years ago, I would let one “bad” choice lead to another...and the another. It was like the never ending cycle of judgement, kind of like this:

Eats a donut at work 👉🏼 says, well eff it, I just screwed up today 👉🏼 eats candy off friends desk 👉🏼 leaves packed lunch in fridge and grabs take out 👉🏼 eats cookie in the afternoon 👉🏼 gahhhhh I feel like 💩 👉🏼 goes home 👉🏼skips workout 👉🏼 has wine and an entire bag of skinny pop instead of dinner.

This cycle would continue sometimes for days, other times for weeks. It was the “being good or being bad” syndrome. It sucked 🤣

So now if I choose to have the donut I realize this a CHOICE, in which I am in control over..just like every other decision I make throughout my day. I approach it without judgement, but instead with curiosity.  This is what I help my clients to do, and I want to help you, too!!

What I've learned through through this time, and in my own personal health journey, is that there are as many “diets” as there are people on the planet.  Do I have it all figured out? Nope. I am still learning, still listening to my body every day. And, compelled & driven to help others learn how to listen to theirs.  What you learn about YOUR body and YOUR habits during this program will change your life!  

 

What clients are saying...

 
 Jan K., Pittsburgh, PA&nbsp;

Jan K., Pittsburgh, PA 

"I had been realizing that I needed and wanted to make some changes in my lifestyle.  I had fallen into habits of self-neglect, especially in terms of thoughtful and nutritious meal planning.  I know that, to make a significant change of any type, it's hard to go it alone.
It felt like perfect timing when I received an email invitation from Sarah to join her 6-week group coaching program.  .In this first meeting, I was quickly drawn to Sarah's contagious enthusiasm in sharing her areas of expertise and passion.
I am filled with appreciation for Sarah and for her consistent and loving guidance.  It was also of great value to have this experience in a communal forum. The group's camaraderie greatly enhanced the experience, allowing us to share our challenges, learnings, inspirations and celebrations with one another.
I have re-discovered the good feeling that comes from truly caring about my well-being, by  making self-care a consistent and joyful priority. I am well on my way.
If you are ready to welcome some topnotch and fun coaching, on your way to optimal health.........treat yourself to a collaboration with Sarah."
 
 Lacey T.,&nbsp;Bossier City, LA

Lacey T., Bossier City, LA

"When I met Sarah I had lost 30 pounds on my own over the course of a year but I was sitting at a weight I could never seem to get below. I even joked with my sister and would say "I'm just meant to be chubby!"
Sarah educated me and challenged me to gaining knowledge about and following through with clean eating and exercising. As hopeful as I was starting this new lifestyle, I was still skeptical! I always thought I was making "sacrifices" when I went on a diet
After just one week of Sarah guiding me, I learned that the food I put in my body means nothing if it has nothing nutritionally valuable.  I was never hungry, I felt amazing. I had energy and drive that I haven't possessed before. In one week, I smashed through that plateau and had lost 3 pounds putting me at a weight I had not seen on the scale since before having my FIRST child!  
And, my doctor is going to take me off my cholesterol medicine for 3 months and see if I can stay off of it for good!!! She was very impressed with my progress!! She said to keep up the good work and stay motivated! I am so incredibly thankful for Sarah. Truly life changing!!"
 
 Abby I., Pittsburgh, PA&nbsp;

Abby I., Pittsburgh, PA 

"I always considered myself a pretty active person and healthy eater, but I struggled with consistency. I have tried so many diets and workout plans even in my short 24 years.  This time, things were totally different.  Instead of a short-term fix, this has been me deciding that I want to live my life in a way that makes me feel good ALL the time, not just sometimes.  For the first time, I saw real results because I was creating sustainable habits. 
Sarah is so encouraging and real. Every step of the way she was a huge support.  The community of like-minded and goal-oriented people that she provides has been my saving grace.  Being accountable is half the battle!  I have lost about 20lbs, seen muscles appear that I don’t think I’ve ever seen before, and gained such confidence! 
I have made it a priority to love my body and mind, and the positive energy has poured over into everything I do.  I absolutely would not have been able to accomplish my goals without Sarah and the guidance, support, and community that she provides! This is not a “quick fix”, but rather a way to love your life. I am not exaggerating when I say that working with Sarah to change my life for the better is one of the best decisions I have made."
 

FAQ

What is Holistic Health?

Holistic health takes a WHOLE body approach to health and wellness, taking into account emotional and social factors, as well as incorporating whole foods and movement. 

What are your credentials? 

I began studying plant based nutrition in 2009, and began my online Health Coaching practice in 2015. I have worked with hundreds of clients across the US and Canada, helping them to reach their fitness, nutrition and overall health goals.

I studied and earned my Holistic Health Coach certification through Health Coach Institute, and am currently working to complete my Life Coach certification. I also holds 3 levels of Mat Pilates Certification, has 10 years teaching experience around the city of Pittsburgh and holds BA and MEd degrees in Education.

What makes this program different?

I hold the belief that my clients are their own best health experts. I see my role as providing resources, and opening up the avenues for YOU to tap into your intuition! My personalized coaching experience enables women to eat healthier, lose weight, maintain a balanced mood with increased energy levels, and live an overall vibrant life! These personal improvements are especially important during the different life stages our bodies go through. The ultimate goal is to create long term, sustainable lifestyle change. 

When are sessions held? 

Weekly group sessions will be held live via webcall, and recorded.
I'm not really sure if this is a good fit for me.  How can I learn more?
Schedule a complimentary Discovery Session, where we'll talk more about your goals, and discuss together whether or not this program is a good fit!

Best Sources of Plant-Based Protein

#1 question we get when sharing with people that we eat a plant based diet:

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"Where do you get your protein?!?"

 

Think about this for a second. Where do some of the worlds largest living things get their intense strength and power?

I'm taking elephants. 🐘Giraffes. Rhinoceros. 🦏Gorilla. 🦍Hippopotamus. Elk. 🦌and when they roamed the Earth, Tons of DINOSAURS. 🐲

🙌🏻🙌🏻Yup, you guessed it! Plants! 🙌🏻🙌🏻

One cup of lentil soup will deliver nearly 20 GRAMS of protein. When combined with a balanced diet, deliver a complete protein profile, which is exactly what the body needs. 👻

So here's the deal. A 100% plant based diet isn't for everyone (we aren't 100%!).

What IS for everyone are the benefits we reap from incorporating MORE plants into our diet. 🥒🍈🌱

Check out some of these delish sources of plant-based proteins.  Chances are, you are already incorporating more than you realize! 

 

Beans (kidney, black, garbanzo/chickpea, white, lima, etc) dried and cooked or drained & rinsed

Lentils, cooked & drained

Edamame, shelled, organic 

Tofu, organic sprouted if possible

Tempeh, organic

 photo cred: Health Magazine

photo cred: Health Magazine

Seitan, organic 

Green peas 

Hemp Hearts

Organic, unsweetened nut butters (peanut, almond..)

Nuts; peanut, almond, macadamia, walnut, brazil, pistachio, cashew, hazelnut, pecan

Seeds; chia, pumpkin

Wild rice 

Nutritional yeast 

Quinoa

Spirulina 

Steel cut or whole (not quick cook) oats

Protein powder, vegan; to add to smoothies.  Please email me for my recommendations! 

 
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And, even these plants carry 2-5 grams per 1 c serving:

Organic, sweet corn

Broccoli 

Broccoli rabe

Potato

Avocado 

Spinach

spinach-large_300x300_96.jpg

 

Brussel sprouts 

Kale

Zucchini

Portobella mushrooms

Hubbard squash 

Collard greens

 

Now you might be like, well Sarah, how am I sure that I get all essential amino acids ?!  (these are the 9 essential acids necessary for optimal body function) Not to worry--  as long as you get a variety of proteins throughout the day, you'll get ample amounts of each amino acids. 

Start where you are! 👌🏼

If you don’t know where to start, please reach out!!  

 

Contact me directly HERE! 

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Love Yo-Self: A 6 Week Foundational Journey

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In honor of February, the month of LOVE, I invite you to embark on a journey of healing, continual learning and self discovery.

It's not easy. Life is busy. Kids and partners and pets and parents need things. There are always house projects. Work is crazy. There is an event, a vacation, a weekend, something, always getting in the way.

But here's the thing...

If you wait until things slow down, the kids are in college, work settles, the house is remodeled, you have more money saved, and the opportune moment in between a vacation, and a social event, you'll never start.

The difference between the people who succeed and the people who don't? They just started.

Are you ready?

This 6 week group coaching program might be a good for you if:

You get bloated after eating

Tend to gain weight easily, especially in your belly

Have extra pounds that won’t come off with diet and exercise

Feel confused about the best foods for your body

Are interested in approaching your weight and your health from a place of self love

Want to adopt mindful patterns around your health

Are ready to trade short term solutions for long term, sustainable solutions

This group program is designed to take the confusion about what to eat, provide a platform for mindful patterns around your health and create a foundation for long term, sustainable lifestyle change. No crazy pills, tricks, gimmicks, or diets of negative self talk. Just real food, and the real system, tools and support you need to ditch the diet mentality, and begin to eat and live in a way that serves you!

What’s included:

>>(1) 1:1 60 Minute Coaching Session with Me. This session is designed for you to get super clear on your goals, what is holding you back, and actionable steps for you to begin taking to radically improve your health (and your life!)

>>(5) 60 Minute Live Group Coaching Sessions With Me. I will share customized coaching exercises that are guaranteed to accelerate your results and help you achieve major breakthroughs so you can see transformation in your body – and your life. These coaching sessions are designed to create a place of community and trust. 

>>Online Mini Course with 14 Day Cleanse
-- Detailed program guide with video tutorial
-- Food journal
-- Sample recipes and resources

>> Online Support Community; to stay connected with our tribe throughout our 6 week journey.

>>Customized Done-For-You Materials Such As Checklists, Recipes, Handouts And More; This group program doesn’t exist to give you MORE information; it exists to give you CURATED information. What that means is that what you can expect is information that is relevant, practical and actionable, so you can stay out of overwhelm and in action!! 
 

In order to give you the best possible coaching experience, space is limited! Applicants will be considered on a first come-first serve basis. 

In order to give you the best possible coaching experience, space is limited! Enrollment is on a first come-first serve basis. 

We kick off March 5!

 

Still on the fence?  

22780275_10212773897735724_655056277040123397_n.jpg

I get it.  It has to just be "another program."  Trust me, I've tried them all.  I counted calories. I measured portions. I counted points.  I would binge, then not eat to make up for the binging.  I would over exercise and over eat.  I tried color diets, diet pills, low carb diets, grapefruit diets, meal replacement shakes.   It wasn't until 2006 that my eyes opened up to a whole new perspective on diet.  The more I read, the more I learned, and the more I practiced in my own life, it became clear that by focusing on the foods that were right for my body, I could break free from the diet mentality and rid the dreaded pattern of yo-yo dieting forever.

What I learned through through this time, and in my own personal health journey, is that there is not one cookie cutter approach.  There are as many “diets” as there are people on the planet.  Do I have it all figured out? Nope. I am still learning, still listening to my body every day. And, compelled & driven to help others learn how to listen to theirs.  What you learn about YOUR body during this program will change your life!  

 

What clients are saying...

 
 Lacey T.,&nbsp;Bossier City, LA

Lacey T., Bossier City, LA

"When I met Sarah I had lost 30 pounds on my own over the course of a year but I was sitting at a weight I could never seem to get below. I even joked with my sister and would say "I'm just meant to be chubby!"
Sarah educated me and challenged me to gaining knowledge about and following through with clean eating and exercising. As hopeful as I was starting this new lifestyle, I was still skeptical! I always thought I was making "sacrifices" when I went on a diet
After just one week of Sarah guiding me, I learned that the food I put in my body means nothing if it has nothing nutritionally valuable.  I was never hungry, I felt amazing. I had energy and drive that I haven't possessed before. In one week, I smashed through that plateau and had lost 3 pounds putting me at a weight I had not seen on the scale since before having my FIRST child!  
And, my doctor is going to take me off my cholesterol medicine for 3 months and see if I can stay off of it for good!!! She was very impressed with my progress!! She said to keep up the good work and stay motivated! I am so incredibly thankful for Sarah. Truly life changing!!"
 
 Abigail I., Pittsburgh, PA&nbsp;

Abigail I., Pittsburgh, PA 

"I always considered myself a pretty active person and healthy eater, but I struggled with consistency. I have tried so many diets and workout plans even in my short 24 years.  This time, things were totally different.  Instead of a short-term fix, this has been me deciding that I want to live my life in a way that makes me feel good ALL the time, not just sometimes.  For the first time, I saw real results because I was creating sustainable habits. 
Sarah is so encouraging and real. Every step of the way she was a huge support.  The community of like-minded and goal-oriented people that she provides has been my saving grace.  Being accountable is half the battle!  I have lost about 20lbs, seen muscles appear that I don’t think I’ve ever seen before, and gained such confidence! 
I have made it a priority to love my body and mind, and the positive energy has poured over into everything I do.  I absolutely would not have been able to accomplish my goals without Sarah and the guidance, support, and community that she provides! This is not a “quick fix”, but rather a way to love your life. I am not exaggerating when I say that working with Sarah to change my life for the better is one of the best decisions I have made."
 

FAQ

What is Holistic Health?

Holistic health takes a WHOLE body approach to health and wellness, taking into account emotional and social factors, as well as incorporating whole foods and movement. 

What are your credentials? 

I began studying plant based nutrition in 2009, and began my online Health Coaching practice in 2015. I have worked with hundreds of clients across the US and Canada, helping them to reach their fitness, nutrition and overall health goals.

I studied and earned my Holistic Health Coach certification through Health Coach Institute, and am currently working to complete my Life Coach certification. I also holds 3 levels of Mat Pilates Certification, has 10 years teaching experience around the city of Pittsburgh and holds BA and MEd degrees in Education.

What makes this program different?

I hold the belief that my clients are their own best health experts. I see my role as providing resources, and opening up the avenues for YOU to tap into your intuition! My personalized coaching experience enables women to eat healthier, lose weight, maintain a balanced mood with increased energy levels, and live an overall vibrant life! These personal improvements are especially important during the different life stages our bodies go through. The ultimate goal is to create long term, sustainable lifestyle change. 

When are sessions held? 

Weekly group sessions will be held live via webcall, and recorded.
I'm not really sure if this is a good fit for me.  How can I learn more?
Schedule a complimentary Discovery Session, where we'll talk more about your goals, and discuss together whether or not this program is a good fit!

7 Things You Can Do Today to Improve Your Health

We tend to over complicate what it takes to live a truly vibrant life.  There are simple shifts you can make beginning TODAY that will greatly impact your ability to increase energy, improve digestion, manage weight, improve skin, hair & nails, and begin to feel FAB!

 
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#1: Drink your h2o!

Did you know that you should be drinking approximately HALF of your body weight, in ounces each day?  Yup!  So, let's say you weigh 160 pounds.  Divide that number in half and you'll calculate 80 ounces each day. 

Having a hard time getting it in?  Start by adding 12 ounces each week until you hit your goal!  Maybe even try drinking your water out of a wine glass ;)

 

#2: Cut the crap out of your coffee & tea

We live in a highly caffeinated world!!  Coffee does get a bad rap.  Almost always, it's not so much the coffee as it is all the CRAP we put into our coffee!  This means no flavored creamers.  No sugar.  No half and half.  Opt for your unsweetened milk of choice, 1 tsp honey or pure maple syrup, or {gasp!}, black.

 

#3: Sleep!

For many of us, this is easier said than done. But if you’re constantly tired, your body is going to look for energy, usually in the form or sugar, refined or processed carbohydrates or caffeine. Aim for 7-9 hours of zzzzzz's consistently.  

#4:  Check Your Protein, Healthy Fat & Fiber

This dynamic trio helps to slow the absorption of sugar into the bloodstream.  The slower the release, the less the spike!  Not eating the right combo can lead to cravings. When I work with clients we find just the right sweet spot for protein, the right fats, and fiber intake so they feel satisfied.

 
farm food.jpg

#5: Get your label reading on

Understanding what you put into your body is essential to your health and well being.  Get in the habit of incorporating more plants (fruits, veg, nuts, seeds, legumes, beans, unprocessed whole grains) and fewer foods made in plants (dairy, breads, cereals, processed foods) You ARE what you eat!

 

#6: Move Yo’self

Movement is another kind of food for your body. It releases stress, makes you feel great and look great. When you don’t get enough, the body starts to look for other ways to blow off steam, like binging on Snickers bars, wine or having no patience with your kids.

collage16.jpg
 

#7:  Head into each week with a PLAN!  

Fail to plan, plan to fail, right?!  I work with clients to consider how this all fits in - with family, friends, holidays, parties, otherwise, you may feel like you have to choose between your health plan and living your life.  And that’s not sustainable!    

 

The key is to do these things consistently.  Not for a just a day, a week, or a month.  Begin to layer them in and make them your way!  

Learn more about how to live a vibrant life HERE.  I can't wait to connect! 

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Journey to a Nicotine Free Me

Did you know I smoked for 19 years?  .

I know, I know.  Moms don’t smoke!  Neither do teachers, Pilates instructors, vegetarians, runners or Health Coaches.  And you know what's weird?  I don’t regret it one bit.

I smoked for majority of my adult life and I loved it.  It started as the “cool” thing to do, that years later turned into my biggest regret.  There were years that I was a pack-a-day smoker.  I would quit and then start again, due to sadness, withdrawal or weight gain.  Nicotine totally controlled me.  My stepdad used to say to me, “Hey Sarah.  You know that smoking really contradicts with your healthy lifestyle.”  Duh.  If it was easy to set them down and walk away, I would have done it the first time I wanted to quit. Here’s the thing:  Nicotine is a physical, mental and emotiotional addiction.  It's not easy to “just quit.”  

A few things played a role in my decision to finally stop.   in 2015, Ziggy was beginning to say words, and the thought of him asking why I smelled like smoke, or asking me what a lighter was for terrified me.  I didn’t want to continue to be that closet smoker mom.  

I had also recently read The Compound Effect, an amazing, quick read, that reminds us that all things, good and bad, over time, have the ability to yield HUGE results.  In this case, it was not-so-hot-results.   My role as a Health Coach had recently begun as well, and I was working daily to inspire others as they embarked on their health journeys.  It just seemed wrong to be telling people that their body was their most valuable asset, then put my baby down for a nap and sneak a smoke break.  {liarliarpantsonfire}

 
 

So, on July 5, 2015, I smoked my last cigarette.  And just like that, I began my journey to being nicotine free.  No patches, no pills, no gum. I would be lying if I said it was easy.  It really sucked.  I loved smoking cigarettes.  It was like losing a best friend.  There were days I felt sad, others angry.  Some days I screamed in frustration, and others I wanted to just curl up and press fast forward.  My husband Chris and my clients were my biggest cheerleaders. Days turned into weeks, and weeks into months.  

And before I knew it, one day, I realized that I hadn’t thought about smoking. It was awesome.  

 

I still think about cigarettes sometimes.  They were there for me in good times and in bad.  They were there for me when I needed to decompress or to take a break from a stressful situation.  We shared lots of laughs together with good friends.  And I don’t regret smoking a single one of them.  They were a big part of my life for a really long time.  

I look back now and think about the TIME and MONEY I have gained, not to mention truly treating my body the way it deserves to be treated.  Because hey, if we don’t have our HEALTH, what do we have?

Here’s the thing: Change is HARD. Change takes TIME. It takes CONSISTENCY. It takes WILLPOWER and most importantly, keeping your eye on the prize. And that is your WHY.

We all have room to grow and make ourselves happier, healthier versions of ourselves. As I continue to grow and change, I am especially thankful for those closest to me, who see both the rays of sunshine and the thunder crashing down.  Without them, I wouldn’t ever find the strength to make it through difficult tides.  

In whatever positive change you are making in your life, stay strong. YOU are worth it.  I promise. 

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Contact me here.  I'd love to connect! 

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How to Adopt A Journaling Practice

It’s taken me a while to get into a solid journaling practice. It’s something that is a continual work in progress, and a something that I recommend my clients adopt as a daily discipline. 📝

I've tried everything, from a single sheet of paper, to basic spiral notebooks, to fancy little notebooks with motivational quotes.  I've finally found a system that works for me, and am excited to share it with you!  

 
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The One-Line-A-Day is a 5 year journal that leaves just enough space to jot a sentence or two about the day. 

I started one the day Ziggy was born, and continue to jot a quick note, memory or milestone in each day.  It is hard to believe we are already nearing the end of year 4 in this 5 year journal!  

 

 

 

 

 
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More recently, I discovered The Five Minute Journal.  This beautiful hard back book has space and prompts for reflecting morning and night, in about 5 minutes each day.  Each day begins with a quote to set the tone for the day, and has space to write out gratitude, affirmations, and asks what would make today great. 

The end of day prompts ask you to relfect on 3 amazing things that happened throughout the day, as well as one thing that would have made today even better.  I love this practice because it is simple, helps me to focus attention, and stay focused on the positive!  

 

Setting aside time to write, even 1-2 sentences a day, strengthens our self discipline. Like a muscle, the more you use it, the stronger it gets!

Habits formed in one area of life have a tendency to spread...

Reflecting on something positive daily 👉🏼

happier you 👉🏼

motivation to take better care of yourself 👉🏼

positively impacts relationships...

Because how we do one thing is how we do everything!

 

Here are some fun facts about it:

📝 Journaling brings us to a state of mindfulness. There is a strong connection between happiness and mindfulness!

📝 Journaling helps us to achieve goals. When we put pen to paper, it signals to our brain “this is important!” 

📝 Journaling about a positive experience allows our brain to relive it, reaffirming your abilities when self doubt creeps in. Still not sure where to begin??

As you work to incorporate new habits and rituals into your life, remember the importance of layering it in. Patience and consistency are crucial in forming new habits! Pick up a piece of paper, and just START where you are . <3 

 

Connect with me here.  Please never hesitate to reach out!

 

xo sarah

Trust Your Inner Guide

For the last couple of years, I have created a vision board. It is like a goal board—everything that you are setting out to accomplish in different areas of your life throughout the year.

I completed my 2018 board, including goals for our family, our marriage, our home, my business and my health. I included a weight loss goal. I hit print.

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For a moment I reflected, realizing that the weight loss goal wasn’t in alignment with other goals for this year. I went to grab my copy off of the printer to toss into the recycling.

It didn’t print.  

So, I went on the edit my vision board, removing the weight loss goal, and replacing it with “practice self love, honor body,” and hit print.

It printed.

 

As you embark on your journey this year, be open to the messages guiding you throughout your day.  Be kind to yourself, lead with an open heart, and trust you are being led on your path for PURPOSE. 

A New Year Blessing;

May this year be significant in your journey 🦋

May you find simple joys 💫

May you release judgement and find curiosity ✌🏼

May you embrace self love ❤️

May you find something that your heart desires ✨

May you give and receive abundantly 💞

May you bask in Mother Nature's glory🌞

May you find gratitude in moments 🙏🏼

May the journey to the destination provide growth 🛤

May you love 💓

May you be loved 💕

May you trust that you are being guided on your path 🗺

May you find courage to face obstacles 🔮

May you and the people you love be blessed 👥

 

If you you interested in locking arms with a small group of women through my Holistic Heath Practice who are committed to practicing self love and honoring their bodies this year, please be in touch.  With the right focus, you can achieve anything! 

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Oh Sugar, You Ain't So Sweet

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It sure tastes good.  And it feels good, too.  Sugar is addictive as cocaine, lighting up dopamine receptors in the brain (think of a Christmas tree.  Inside your HEAD.) 

So, even though we know it's not good for us, we dive in for more, eager for another hit.  What's more troublesome is that we don't even realize we are addicted, and that most people are literally eating it from sun up to sun down.  

Nearly 152 POUNDS of added sugar find it's way into the average American's diet each year.  That is equivalent to an average size HUMAN.  The problem is that it is everything, from the culprits we'd expect (cookies, candy, soda) to the not-so obvious (sauces, crackers, meal replacement shakes, bars, salad dressings, frozen dinners and the majority of all processed foods). 

Your main task is to GET YOUR LABEL READING ON.  And no, not the nutritional label that breaks down calories, grams of fat, fiber, etc.  This is IS important.  But what is more important is the list of INGREDIENTS.  Do you know what you are actually putting IN your body?  

I didn't.  Not for a really long time.  This process was really eye opening for me, and it likely will be for you, too. 

Below, find five foods, many pantry staples, that include processed sugar, as well as other sh*t that probably aren't interested in putting inside your body!  

1.  YOGURT

The majority of flavored yogurts contain added sugars, thickeners and artificial colors.  Trade out fat free conventional yogurts for grass fed, plain 2% of full fat.  Add a tsp of raw honey and fresh fruit to give a punch of natural sweetness.

2. GRANOLA/PROTEIN BARS

You know, healthy, fit people enjoying a granola bar in the fresh air after a glorious hike.  It HAS to be healthy!  Trade out a processed bar for a 1/2 cup of homemade trail mix using raw nuts, unsweetened dry fruit and 75% dark cocoa chips.

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3.  CEREAL

Did you know there are ELEVEN varieties of Cheerios?  Yup, just Cheerios!  Most grocery stores have an entire aisle dedicated to this fortified, sugar packed, shelf stable American favorite--CEREAL!  Swap out your bowl of cold cereal for a serving of rolled oats.  Top with your favorite unsweetened milk, a tsp of real maple syrup, and fresh fruit for a well rounded, nutrient packed breakfast. 

4. PEANUT BUTTER

Did you know that nut butters are supposed to have a pool of oil sitting on top when you open the jar?  It's true.  As a dedicated JIF eater for most of my life, I was shocked to see this when I opened my first jar of "natural" nut butter.  But, be on the lookout.  Even natural nut butters have added sugar, added oils, added salt and other funk.  Be on the lookout for one with ORGANIC PEANUTS as the only ingredient.    

5.  TOMATO SAUCES AND SOUPS

Have you ever eaten a summer tomato right off the vine?  You know, sunk into its divine sweetness.  Like candy!! <3  Not all jarred/canned tomato products have added sugar or funk (think pasta sauce, canned tomatoes, salsa, tomato paste), just be sure to get in the habit of reading those labels! Check out my favorite marinara sauce here!  I add new soup recipes weekly on my blog as well.

It's a lot to take in, right?! 

ASSIGNMENT:  Take a look in your fridge/pantry/freezer, and take a look at the ingredient labels of some of your kitchen staples.  The KEY is to do this with CURIOSITY, not judgement.  So, you find all of your food is full of sugar, fillers and other crap?  No probs!  Now you know what to get rid of, or what to avoid next time.   

Feeling overwhelmed?  I've got you girl.  Be in touch with questions about where to start.  You DESERVE to live a healthy, vibrant life, from the inside out! 

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