Author: bonnie

Hey guys! I hope you all had a great weekend! I am trying to get this blog post up and then go to bed – it’s already past my time to shut my screens down and be getting ready for bed, and I have a full week coming up so I’m ready to wind down! But I wanted to check in and share not only a bit about my weekend, but some thoughts surrounding the habits we’re cultivating day in and day out. Stick around and dialogue a bit with me!

I recently stumbled upon Georgie Fear, a nutrition and habit change coach, through a random podcast. I loved her interview and searched for her, devouring what she had to say about habit change. I’ve realized that if I was to ever go back to school, it would be in the field of health psychology; I’m fascinated by what shapes our habits and how we can change those habits and what’s going on in our minds rather than just the outward changes we make (exercise and nutrition) when trying to get fit. She’s pretty great, and another Canadian (in Vancouver), so chances of connecting at health/fitness conferences and the like are more possible than many nutrition/fitness experts in the US. I’ve been reading a lot about her and love her blog and new book, “Lean Habits for Lifelong Weight Loss,” both for myself but also for coaching clients (I haven’t purchased it yet, just been reading lots about the book).




This idea of habits and habit change has been on my mind a lot lately, and I’ve been trying to practice better habits all week. No, I’m not overweight or on an upward trend in my weight, and I don’t binge or have terrible eating habits. But we all have those days in which our emotions take over, we get lazy in the kitchen, or we indulge too much and don’t feel great the next day, and I want to be stronger than those emotions and those days. Yes, those moments will always happen (in fact I make room for them with mindful indulgences!), but I’m forever wanting to practice healthy habits.

I’m working on one of Georgie’s 4 core habits right now: eating 3 meals a day. Sounds simple, right? But this means getting hungry enough to want that next full meal (ie: allowing yourself to feel some hunger) and then eating until you are satisfied. No snacks, no mindless munching while you’re making dinner or coming home in between clients and just want to grab a small bite to eat. This has been valuable because it’s revealed to me how much I really do snack when I’m NOT hungry – I might be bored or be tired when I *think* food is what I need but it might actually be a quick nap or more water. So that’s been fun to work on!


(Lately: lots of spaghetti squash, some kind of meat, loads of broccoli slaw, and hot sauce!)


A new-to-me vegan protein; I’ve bought the whey version of this brand but am happy to bring some plant-based sources into my diet as I have a protein shake maybe every other day.

It’s got me thinking about habits. Some people, after years of cultivating the habit of regular weight lifting, have muscles that just seem to stick around, regardless of their activity level (I’m lookin’ at you, mom!); others have committed many verses in the Bible to memory and are well-equipped to think of encouraging verses in their own lives or for others when they need it. Some people always drink water regularly or have practiced healthy habits and boundaries around alcohol, and never need to imbibe too much! It takes work, active work, but we can change our habits that are so ingrained in us one step at a time.


(Tired 1 am – or maybe 2? – pizza in New York earlier this year after our first loooong day of walking all around the city until we were super hungry and exhausted; pizza never tasted so good and I didn’t regret this late-night choice in the slightest!) 

I always encourage my clients to choose one thing to focus on until they nail that goal; then choose another habit and continue moving on. Overhauling your entire life is too hard – it’s unstable and unsettling and can drive you crazy! But focusing on one healthy habit change before moving onto the next can help bring actual change whose results are sustainable.

One of the habits I need to change (WANT to, as well!)? Time spent listening to Jesus in silence, prayer and by reading the Bible. It’s amazing how many other things I make time for and neglect this one very important relationship in my life. Why is it so hard for me to sit down and be still? To spend time listening instead of asking; seeking Jesus’ face instead of praying for answers to prayer; getting to know Jesus through His Word rather than breezing through a chapter or two of verses I’ve read and glossed over, familiar with since my youth?


It’s a pursuit, a life-long pursuit, so I know that my habits in any of these realms (fitness, nutrition; spiritual, emotional, relational; etc) will not change overnight, nor would I want them to, really. The fight, the learning that comes from growth through the struggle is worth it to see change. I wouldn’t want to be the same person in my fitness goals or thoughts about nutrition now as 10 years ago, or 20 years from now either! I certainly want to know Jesus more deeply every day, but I need to action on my habits in the meantime, starting with one small move at a time.


What realm do you need to work on in your habits or helping to create habit change?Physical? Mental? Emotional? Spiritual?  

– – – – – – – – –

Some habits that are dialed in for me? Having fun on the weekends! 😉 I trained a few clients Saturday morning and got my own workout in with Zach at CityFit!

We saw SUCH a great movie I cannot recommend enough later Saturday: The Intern. We went to a matinee (random and fun for something different!) with a friend who’s in town and I felt like this was a great use of a few hours; such a believable, real story that tugged at me the entire time. I’m an easy cryer, so don’t base anything off me, but wow I sobbed the whole movie. 😉



Sunday we had a great morning at church (such a solid sermon!) and got the chance to see my in-laws and lots of friends; so grateful for good community! And then we watched a Nat Geo Live show at the Arts Commons building in Calgary – another great use of almost 2 hours! These shows bring fascinating people with amazing experiences to speak and share video clips and it’s a very popular and entertaining speaker series. It’s a chance to meet extraordinary explorers, filmmakers, and photographers who are both documenting and helping to preserve our world’s natural beauty (source), and Sylvia Earle, referred to as “Her Deepness” and a true pioneer of underwater exploration, did not disappoint Sunday. I was surprised to see an old woman, hunch backed and walking slowly onto the stage, when they introduced a woman of great accolades in the science and diving community but was immediately engaged and inspired by this fire cracker of a woman! Wow…it was an incredible experience to hear her speak about her travels and adventures and pursuit of helping restore the ocean, enjoying it herself, and helping others to dream big and dive in (literally)!


Afterwards we met friends from our Grand Canyon trip for happy hour half priced tacos and margaritas at Anejo on 4th St. and enjoyed some time reconnecting and sharing stories!


After this fun time, Mikey and I dropped a meal off for friends who just had a beautiful baby girl and got to connect for a bit with them and hear about all the life change (she’s only 8 days old!) and that was a beautiful finish to our weekend.

So fun? No problem there. 😉 More on the discipline side to come, but everything I ate this weekend was intentional and mindful, and I made room for it by saying no to other things. I got a fun workout in but also rest, was busy but also had a bit of downtime. Habit change – little by little. :)

Any highlights to share about your weekend? Lay ’em on me! I want to hear about them!

Live well & be well, friends, and make one healthy habit change today and commit to work on it all week!


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Alright you guys, let’s be honest. Some days it’s easier to live a healthy lifestyle. Maybe we’re prepped in the fridge, have good foods ready to go for each meal, are pumped up about a new program, and feeling inspired about our lives. But other times… Well, other times we’re overtired, stressed, pressed for time, and possibly on your period (ladies). You know what? Those are times we might not think as rationally, make the best decisions or act emotionally.

Take Monday, for example. Ohhh Monday.


Here’s what I posted on my Instagram and Facebook page about the above photo:

“Guys. Keeping it real here. 🙋I actually ate and drank what I quit well over the ‪‎Girls Trip in Palm Springs – even though I planned to splurge! But something was just off today… I still don’t like to classify foods as “good” or “bad,” but the main issue is that I chose sugary foods and ate well beyond my satiety levels today. It’s not bad that I had Oreo, licorice or cookie dough – just that I had a lot of all 3. 😉

I could choose to beat myself up about it or let this go on, but I won’t. Tomorrow’s a new day! I will NOT weigh myself, work extra hard or worry about it; I’ll fuel well, workout as usual and enjoy my day all the same. No biggie.

Side note: this flavour, bought on a real whim and impulse (unusual for me), is REALLY good. 🙌 ”

Okay…So, as it turns out, I got my period (insert light bulb emoticon right here)! Well that makes a lot of sense. [Also, check out Kara Corey’s recent video about how to handle eating on the week of your period.] Because cravings are the real deal, they happen each month to me, and yet they always take me by surprise – go figure. At any rate, I was feeling pretty full of sugar after this eating incident, and while Tuesday and Wednesday were much better, they still had some sugar in there. I could have beat myself up or criticized my body to death, but I’ve been choosing to structure my thoughts about my body in an intentionally positive way instead.

Period or not, this happens to us all – even my early morning clients yesterday said that they ate a lot of junk over the weekend – they “fell off the wagon,” in fact. How many times have you said that you fell off the wagon? I’m willing to bet it’s a lot, and that you also said, in almost the same breath, you would be getting right back on that wagon soon.

But here’s the thing… What is there is no wagon?


Say what now? “But Bonnie,” you say, “Clearly there are good and bad foods; clearly there are times I’m on or off track and eating/living like I’m supposed to be…” Well, what if food is just food? An Oreo weighed in the same balance as a salad. I know it’s kind of crazy, but just think about that concept for minute.

I’m not saying that an Oreo has the same impact on our body as a salad, but perhaps that we could use some doing away with our connotations around foods as being “bad” or “good” and then how they relate to keeping us “on” or “off” the “wagon.”

It’s an interesting thought, to think of food as just food, and not worry about being on or off any wagon in our health journey. But what does a wagon symbolize to your health journey?

First of all, the idea of a wagon symbolizes that you’re either in or you’re out – there’s really no wiggle room in a little ol’ wagon. It’s like walking a tight-rope – not much space for gray areas there.



I don’t think eating is that black and white, or that life is, for that matter. I’ve shared the idea ofprogress, not perfection before (check out my blog post here), and it’s something I still strive to focus on. That doesn’t mean I’m throwing in the towel with my moderation and choosing foods that will leave me feeling unsatisfied and discouraged, but rather that I’m not aiming for the stress that perfectionism can bring, but rather seeing positive growth and change along the way. Plus, if we’re all trying to be on the same wagon, what kind of standard are we trying to hit? No Oreos, ever (yes, not even birthday cake)? Well what if someone practices IIFYM (if it fits your macros) and eats Oreos as part of their meal plan? Are they off the wagon? And where do these standards of “healthy eating” and resulting bodies come from, anyways?

This doesn’t mean you throw your hands up in the air and forget about it. No way – you’ve worked too hard to let things go at this point – at least I have! But one night of eating won’t affect the rest of my week if I can help it, because it’s just part of my life.Now, others might indeed do well with this type of framework, but it’s just too restrictive for me and leads to more restriction, and that never ends well. Monday night wasn’t an example of me being off the wagon, but an example of giving in to cravings and eating too much of a tasty thing. Big deal. Move on. Food is food, and there is no wagon in my life anymore. Being on or off the wagon sounds an awful lot like dieting to me – you’re either on a good diet or off the rails with your eating or exercise habits. This is only one line of thinking about food and habits that isn’t sustainable – otherwise we’d not be jumping on and off so much!

If you’re struggling with your eating or with your discipline in the gym (we all do!), that means that you’re conscious of how you want to change and working on it – aiming for progress, not perfection, and that is a beautiful thing.

So…do you believe in the wagon? Here’s another article I just read about balancing hill sprints and donuts that I loved! Have you ever heard yourself or others reference this wagon? I’d love to hear your thoughts on this one!

Live well & be well, friends,


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Hey guys! I hope you had great weekends and are ready for a productive and focused, great week ahead; I know I am as I focus on choosing joy and being grateful for work and community. Perhaps my current state of gratitude is stemming from an incredible, refreshing and life-giving weekend away with a great group of girls down in beautiful, sunny Palm Springs. After many years of our husbands heading out for an extended guys’ ski weekend together, we finally decided to go away ourselves – but in our own way!



Palm Springs vacation package it was, and my first ever girls’ trip! I’ve always wanted to do one and haven’t spent too much one-on-one or all-girls time with this group before and it was so needed and so fun.


I’ll let the few photos we took speak for themselves, but here’s a quick taste of our weekend away, which included:

Palm Trees

Oh, to be back in the HOT California sun and welcoming, warm evenings outside…





I’m actually not a big shopper, but let me tell you – it’s so much more fun with a group of girls who say things like, “That looks so cute!” or, “Yeah, get that one!” 😉 I didn’t do too much damage, but did score some great finds from TJMAXX, Marshall’s and Nordstrom’s Rack (a necklace and stud earrings here, workout and casual clothes at the other stores).


I’ve never had a cute bathing suit – or, to be honest, a real flattering one that wasn’t just active and supportive. I got this top and an non-matching but classic pair of black bottoms at Target – each for $14.99! – and LOVE it. I feel great in this and have totally embraced this fun look… Too bad summer – and even fall! – is really over now…I got 2 days of good wear out of it and can’t wait for more when I’m not hucking it huge on a raft or kayaking down a river. This is a legit lounging swim suit!

Fun Food

We went out for dinners (never snapped any photos!), had some wine (but nothing close to the three bottles we bought for the weekend – we are light weights! ha), bought a delicious and cheap party pail of cookies n’ cream ice cream which we barely dented, and had a continental breakfast at the hotel plus veggies and snacks for lunch that we purchased. This was perfect, and food was neither a focus nor disregarded – just food as food, just as it should be.

I did love going into Whole Foods and wandering around the aisles unrushed and solo for a bit while the girls were next door in another store and picked up a few neat items (and had to photograph my favorite California sandals, Rainbows, that I’ve had for years, too):


Lounging/Pool Time

Oh yeah. Lots of it. Wonderful, hot, relaxing, time spent chatting, lounging, swimming and laughing by the pool.


However, there was also some good movement! We walked a ton the first day – all over the outlet mall and then all evening at the downtown Street Market, which was so much fun (and where I broke my fast that day with a delicious Mexican meal of 2 tacos, rice and beans – all from people who spoke Spanish aka it was authentic and the BEST!). I worked out the next day and here’s myInstagram video of what I did in case you need a dumbbells only workout for inspiration this week:

And the next day all 5 of us squeezed into the teeny, tiny hotel gym for a great 20 minute bodyweight workout – the break down of what we did is on my Instagram picture in the link here!

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I am really proud of these ladies for moving in a small space and making it work – they did awesome with good form, lasting a minute per exercise, and earning the rest of the afternoon’s lounge time after this. They rocked the workout; let me know if you give it a go!

Great Conversation

We talked pretty much non-stop; I think we needed it! In this group there are 2 moms each with 2 kids and the rest of us range from a personal trainer (me), a professional photographer (check her out, local Calgarians!) and a freshly minted endocrine paediatrician. We are busy women who don’t always get these moments to connect and it was fun, needed, a release and provided many opportunities for going deeper and cementing our friendships. I’m so grateful for it!


Thanks, ladies for a wonderful trip. I feel rested, relaxed and grateful for this time away with you all. I really am thankful to know you all – you add so much to my life here in Calgary! Looking forward to making this an annual tradition already!

Have you been a on a friends’ trip like this before? 

When’s the last time you retreated, recharged and felt ready for life again? Do you have a solid community around you that can help be your support and vice versa? 

I better hit the hay. Just wanted to check in! Live well & be well friends – see you around the blog this week!


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Happy Thanksgiving to all my Canadian friends & family! We’ve had an absolutely stunning weekend here in Calgary and the pause of Thanksgiving has caused me to reflect on, of course, what I’m thankful for in the midst of some ups and downs this weekend.

Some of the high points included the weather – it’s been so incredibly warm and wonderful and I just can’t get over it. I went for some walks in between clients Friday before pumping out a fun workout at CityFit that included a few fun elements of movement:

Getting down low with a close grip is KILLER! I did 4 rounds of: high sled pushes (3 plates at 20 KG each), driving through the heel and then low sled pushes on the way back; 20 dumbbell snatches, alternating arms (30#); 16 total front-loaded reverse lunges (65#); 8 renegade rows (rowing on each side per push up, 20#).

A few hours after the above circuit and a few clients later, I had some fun with a great finisher using the 100 lb resistance ropes! I set the clock for 20 minutes and ended up with 5 sets of: back peddles (waddle those hips!), lateral side sets, and forward sprints, 3 times each to make one set (3 times back, forward, facing left and facing right). So effective! – and a great, fresh way to make fitness fun. You better believe I’ll be doing this more with clients now that I’ve tried it out!

Although we wanted to go out originally, we decided Friday night that we were spent and caught up on our favorite shows (we don’t watch much of any TV on the week nights anymore) like Survivor and Gotham and The Mindy Project on the projector. We make Friday TV nights pretty epic. 😉


Saturday I was again thankful for delightful weather and a walk to the farmer’s market for some fresh veggies and supplies for the sides I’m contributing to our family dinner Monday evening. I went with my phone in airplane mode, no headphones, wearing a tank top and shorts, and just enjoyed the run there, the walk back and the bustling atmosphere of the fall market. I stopped to snap a picture because I was just so grateful for the day and for so many simple things in my life that I don’t take for granted.


Later that day we had the opportunity to go to a Calgary Stampeder’s game (football) with my father-in-law and it was so fun! The perfect fall day for football, and it was fun to go out for a community sports event like this!


We went with our church as part of the Faith & Family Night. It was so neat – even though they lost the game, afterward we got to go out on the field together with others (1,600!) who participated in the night. Not only was that really cool (the astro-turf-like texture is awesome and there were little bits of rubber mixed into it – great purchase for cleats digging in and really soft with a give to it), but they had 3 Christian players come out and speak about their faith in football and life. It was super meaningful and made the whole night worth it. Many players in the CFL are ex-NFL’ers, and many are Americans; these guys were from California and St. Louis, so that was kind of cool for me too! What a great evening and a reminder that above all, my life needs to be about Jesus, not about the outward things that define me (even like being a pro football player!).


There was good food this weekend (and we’ve got our big meal to come yet!), beautiful sunsets, and good time together with Mikey and friends.



Sunday was beautiful in many different ways… We volunteered at our church in the morning and got to hear amazing stories of people we met in between services who were alone. It’s a pretty cool ministry to be a part of as we stroll down “Main Street” as it’s referred to and connect with people who are new, lonely, needing prayer, or needing to chat. It’s made us feel so much more connected to our church community and we’ve met so many people we wouldn’t have stopped for in the hustle and bustle of going to church and then leaving after the service. It felt rich and beautiful and meaningful.

The service was also so good, and between the Christ-focused music and the sermon about being generous with our time and talents and not expecting anything or what’s “fair” from others or God, I left feeling overwhelmed emotionally but in a good way. Being in God’s presence tends to do that to me.

And after lunch with friends (another great connection point!), cooking for our meal tomorrow, and taking down time to be at home, we got the news from our friend, Kristen, that her husband, Brock, who we’d been filming the last almost 2 years, had passed away.


It’s hard to describe how I felt hearing the news… We’ve lost many friends to cancer because of the community we’re in, so unfortunately, this is not something new for us to experience. And Brock has been in and out of the hospital and on the brink of death for a long time. But somehow he always came out of it and bounced back, putting the “Brock Effect” as the doctors came to call it in full effect, so his death caught me off guard today. I could write a lot about what Brock (and his family -Kristen and their son Ben) taught me, but I’ll just say that seeing him at “Brock-Fest,” the 40th birthday party his extremely supportive community threw for him exactly a week ago, celebrating life in his wheelchair until 2:30 in the morning, surrounded by people he loved, was the way he would have wanted to go. Full of life and with the most positive, beautiful, authentic perspective on the world that you could imagine – despite all that he’d been through. He certainly wasn’t bitter or didn’t shake his fist at the world for his struggles…He didn’t expect life to be fair and has left an indelible impression on my own life. More tears were shed Sunday, because although we knew it was coming his death hit me hard in a way I haven’t fully experienced before. But the tears were full of emotions because I’m so grateful he finally accepted the reality of his sickness and allowed his family to move on, all together. Celebrations were had all throughout his last week of life and it’s just in line with who Brock was – what a friend, father, husband and example.

So I am thankful for life. For shelter, a roof and a bed; for family and friends and a loving community; for a wonderful and caring husband; for freedom to move my body and play and exercise; for freedom in what I believe and how I express myself; for God’s grace and unconditional love displayed through Jesus. And I am grateful for Brock. Kristen wrote these words that I wanted to share with you all:

I hope everyone takes away from this experience the three tenets of Brock’s life: 1) always be kind, and 2) there is always a reason to be joyful, and 3) the world is a good place. In his last weeks, Brock had these words tumbling around in his brain trying to describe how he felt about life. These are the words he wrote down when he found them: “Life can be a good and wonderful thing, and I’m happy to have been a part of it for this little while.”

No more tears left tonight, no more words to write, but I am grateful for this life and to have seen the sun set one more day. Happy Thanksgiving, friends,


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Hey guys! I hope you’ve had a great few days since I last checked in. I’ve been busy finishing up my push and pull up program, training clients, and enjoying an absolutely gorgeous fall here in Calgary; we haven’t even had our first freeze yet! Loving it.

You guys know the saying that ignorance is bliss, right? Well here’s an example of what I mean: When you’re camping and see the evidence of little creatures living around you from the night before when you were sleeping, ignorance is totally bliss. Hey – I’d way rather find out they live in that spot in the morning and have a good night’s sleep, not knowing they were there as I slept. Oh yes, ignorance is bliss when I find the mouse in the water bucket in the morning but didn’t hear it scampering near my head at night!


Example two: A person hasn’t caught up on the news lately and doesn’t know that someone’s house just down the street was robbed, so they aren’t living in fear when they leave their home.

You get the idea. So while ignorance might be bliss sometimes, being knowledgable about life and our reality is important too. It’s valuable to understand what’s happening in our world and in our bodies and interact on a real level. Yes, it sometimes forces tough-to-answer (and even ask!) questions, but I think more often than not, being informed is better.

Despite this truth, I recently had the thought that maybe, when it comes to health, not knowingsome insights about the fitness and nutrition world could be better than knowing it all. Hear me out on this for a moment.

Yesterday Mikey and I were going through our photos. All of our pictures are digital now, and while we have some great ones from our summer trips and life together, we have a lot of iPhone pictures that we aren’t really ever going to use. In other words, I have a lot of selfies. Like…a lot. 😉 I put them on my computer and then use them for blog posts, but I certainly don’t need to keep them. I shocked myself a bit by going through pictures from the past two years and finding not just selfies, but lots and lots of progress pictures. Why was I taking these pictures? Sometimes it would be front and profile angled shots for a two week, 21 day or 30 day challenge I was doing at the time, and then the subsequent photos of me after the challenge. Fair enough, but I think you guys know I’m done with those challenges for good!

But the few challenges I completed didn’t warrant the numerous front and side shots I’d taken, and I realized I started taking these progress photos in the morning because I threw my scale out and had discovered another way for me to stay on track. While this strategy has a place for people trying to track their progress or lose body fat (just like the scale does), I realized that I was putting a lot of stock into these pictures when I didn’t need to take them daily. I just replaced one form of tracking for another, but I didn’t realize this until last night.

Here’s an example of what I’m talking about:


This was at CityFit on September 25th – I know because of the date on the picture – but most of the pictures I’m referencing were of the self-timer variety where I prop the camera up, have my sports bra on, and pose to the front and side. I consciously always sure to smile because I want to reinforce that my body is good and strong as is, but the truth is that I would look at back on pictures from months ago when my diet was stricter or I was moving more effectively for fat loss OR I just happened to have a “good” day and then feel inadequate with my current state.

And you know what? When I looked back over the pictures and started deleting them, I was embarrassed. Embarrassed because of the quantity of these photos over the past 2 years and because I didn’t realize what was happening mentally every time I snapped a picture. I was comparing myself to my old self in an unhealthy way. Furthermore, I realized it meant that I wasn’t accepting my body as is, appreciating it for what it was, but instead had been picking apart my body in the pictures.

We all know comparing yourself to others is not healthy; we’re here to support one another!



And while the idea of competing with yourself is sometimes healthier than competing (I could also use the word comparing here) with others, it hasn’t always sat well with me…



Sometimes we are GREAT at not comparing ourselves to others, but when it comes to ourself we are totally our worst critics – you know that, because you likely are too! A client of mine confessed, with tears in her eyes, that she’d never tell her kids the negative things about their bodies or the way they move or their weight that she speaks to herself, berating herself for where she’s “allowed herself to get to” and not letting it go. But does that really work to help motivate us to put the cookie down and pick up the broccoli? Comparing yourself to when you were younger or the ideal of who or what you should be or look like typically just leaves us feeling bad about ourselves, and often we pick that cookie right back up.

So how is ignorance bliss here? Well, had I not known about where I could be, or about the concept of abs = fit (which we know is not true and which I happily no longer subscribe to), or about how progress pics are a “thing…” You can see where I’m going with this. And while there’s of course value in knowing about health and staying fit, there’s also value in simply living your life, eating when you’re hungry, moving normally but not worrying about getting all your workouts in, etc!

I read two posts this week that highlighted this idea, and I’d love for you to read them and comment with your thoughts. The first is Whitney’s post about “How Fitness Gave Me a Negative Body Image” and the second is Pam’s courageous account of her struggle with thinking she’s fat in photos called “Hocus Pocus.” Very insightful and I really understood where they were coming from.

Some of this post comes from where I’ve been in the past as I’ve really worked on my self-talk and body image over this past year and really came to some healthy recognitions about my body this summer (you can read about those in my results recap of my #SummerOfSweat here!). But seeing these pictures I’d taken showed me where my mind was at the last little while as I haven’t taken a just-woke-up-when=I’m-leanest photo in quite some time now. But it hit me that we need to be careful about the “healthy habits” we’re indulging in our lives that can serve us well but can also be a detriment to our progress both mentally and even physically.


This picture makes me think of health – of vibrancy and joy, or full life and not worrying about fitness or nutrition and just living. But you know what? I remember the other outtakes from this shot where the lighting was brighter where I noticed the skin on my stomach and asked Mikey to take another picture.  Crazy! I don’t want pictures to bring you back to a negative place in your life or your thinking, and while they inevitably will to some extent (a photo that might remind you of when your last meal with a family member who died, a picture of you right after that Disneyland trip when you were sugar-ed out and stressed out with your family, etc), let’s start working on our mindset and our idea of health and fitness and photos NOW!

Do you or have you ever taken progress photos of your body? Has it affected you positively or negatively in your self-image?

What do you think when you see pictures of yourself? Do you cringe, hide away, critique or do they not matter much to you?

I’d love to hear your thoughts on this topic. Thanks for weighing in, and until next time, snap a proud selfie, jump in that picture with your kids, or better yet, leave the phone or camera and go live life! 😀 Off for a walk in the sunshine before my last 3 wonderful clients of the day,


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Hey guys! How’s the start to your week? Is it full-swing into fall where you are, or still California-hot and dry? I’m amazed talking to my Texas friends and California family how warm it still is there…It’s been beautiful in Calgary, with changing leaves, cool mornings, and very warm sunshine during the day.


Friday was so stunning that I had to take this jumping shot post-workout, done with clients, while on a walk in the park near CityFit. I was embracing the warm fall weather as snow was forecasted for Saturday! As it happened, it ended up being cool and rainy but not really any significant snowfall in the city Saturday, but the cooler weather and start of October brought on what was inevitable…

Yep. It’s time to embrace it: pumpkin everything! I’m not huge on pumpkin, but when the weather turns and I have some spare time and cans of pumpkin laying around, I google what to do with it. 😉 Here are some great pumpkin, protein-packed recipes for your next potluck or dessert!



Speaking of desserts, this week I made Noelle’s grain-free, dairy-free Magic Cookie Bar recipeand the end result was many happy people enjoying a healthy-fat-filled dessert at our first Survive & Thrive board meeting! That was pretty exciting, but so was this recipe – definitely one that I’ll repeat (especially because I’m not a huge coconut fan – so I’m not tempted to house the food like I am with brownies!). 😉


Delish toppings ready to be placed into the pie…Check out my Instagram page for a quick video of the process, and refer to the above link for the recipe!


Fall also makes me think of back-to-school, and it has indeed been a busy season for Mikey and I! Between clients, young adult programs at Wellspring, new film projects for Mikey and simply connecting with friends, life has been on “GO” mode since we got back from the summer. We sure are grateful for work, but after a busy weekend we re reminded that we also need to set good margins for ourselves. But with this season comes that sense of freshness and even learning, so I bought a few online courses through my personal training certifying body, ACSM, and have some studying to do! I needed to renew my continuing education credits and want to stay current and learning, so I’ve got “Improve Client Outcomes & Retention,” “Relationship Nutrition,” and “Motivating a Laughable Range of Personalities” lined up. I can’t wait! Now I just need to be diligent with my time.

When October hits, my mind drifts to my family. I miss connecting with them a bit more as the leaves change, which is funny because California doesn’t really get that drastic of a change in leaves or seasons. But fall makes me think of Halloween, which brings very positive childhood memories flooding back to me and also means Thanksgiving’s just around the corner! I’m so thankful that we are going back to California for Thanksgiving this year and can’t wait! But sometimes I wish I could just head over to Marshall’s on Friday nights with my mom and stroll around, getting her opinion on scented candles or trying on clothes together; looking at the home goods and making some impulse buys or walking out with nothing at all. So I called her from Marshall’s Friday night and sent her pictures to include her in my shopping experience. 😉



(The mug I bought for Mikey…it just made me smile! We need a slow morning with bacon and this mug filled with coffee very soon!)

With the onset of October I’m also excited to change up my fitness plan… I was doing so much pushing and pulling with Kindal and my upper body has kind of suffered because of it. My body finally said “ENOUGH!” last week when I went to do my pull ups and it simply wouldn’t pull any longer. Turns out I have been using my extensors to pull instead of my core (no wonder my neck had a kink in it!) and both my biceps tendons were inflamed. Grateful to go see Dorie at CityFit who helped check out my body and then give me a relaxation massage towards the end of last week.


I still want to do my max push and pull test, but I’m not worried about it as much (I KNOW my strength has increased so much over these last 4 weeks!) and I will see how my body feels early this week with giving a max test a go. In the future? More conditioning! I haven’t been sweating and pushing a ton in the gym, but now I want to get my heart rate up, include more plyometrics and have fun getting explosive in the gym! That and take my workouts to the pavement and run a bit more – as the weather turns, it’s an odd time to get outside more, but I love how fresh and alive I feel when I’m running in the fall and winter and want to keep those cardio elements there after essentially not doing any cardio for the last few month. We’ll see where that leads me.

So… What does October make you think of?

How are the margins in your life?

Any highlights to share from your weekend?

And what do you think about a new fall fitness program? 

Hope you have a great week ahead. Live well & be well!


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Welcome to Bonnie Lang Fitness! I am a personal trainer in Calgary and would love to train with you! Come visit me at CityFit just off Deerfoot and Blackfoot Trail and change your habits, change your body, change your lifestyle.

1A0A0972Check out my prices page for more info on what I charge for one-on-one, partner, small group or bootcamp and find what fits best for you, and stop by my testimonials page to hear what others are saying.

Visit my blog over at Survive & Thrive Healthy Living, where I share my fitness and nutrition musings and my husband and my life adventures. There you’ll also find at-home and in-gym workouts for you to try for your next sweat session!

Live well & be well!

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