Tag: clothes

Hey guys! I hope you had a great Monday to start your week off yesterday and that you’re enjoying the beginning of fall. Recently I felt motivated by the change in weather and decided to do a little life clean up in a few areas and thought I’d share the journey with you guys. Because that’s what my blog is – a place to share stories (I’d love to hear more of yours in the comments; sometimes blogging is a little one-sided but I love hearing about YOUR lives, too!).

So, what prompted it? Coming off the summer, we finally got home and settled back into our apartment in Calgary and noticed that things needed to be cleaned up. It’s amazing how dusty a place can get even when you’re not living there! So Mikey and I tackled our gear room post-Survive & Thrive Expeditions’ summer of adventures. That took a while but made us feel so good, so on a day when I had only some morning clients, I decided to keep the party going. Next up? My closet.


As a personal trainer, almost all of my daily clothes are workout-related, but over the years my closet has built up like anyone else. Living in a place where the seasons require different types of clothing, I’m used to rotating my wardrobe every winter/spring, summer/fall, but the build up was still more than I needed. I’d read about capsule wardrobes online and decided just to go for it. So I dumped all my clothes from my closet and dresser on my bed and without thinking much about my emotional attachment to any piece, sorted each item into: doesn’t fit (give away!); is too old/ratty (throw away!); keep. That’s it! I also went through my workout clothes (I kept more of them because I rotate through so many for work) but went through the same procedure.

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By the end of the process my dresser only had about 3 t-shirts (and 3 nicer ones hanging up), 3 long sleeve shirts, 2 pairs of shorts, 3 pairs of pants and my workout section was nicely tided up. I gave away the above 3 bags of clothes and 1 bag of shoes and threw away one more torn or tattered bag of clothes/shoes. That.felt.amazing!

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clean top!

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bottoms/long sleeve shirts

Is it hard for you to part with clothes?

But why stop there? I’d always wanted to tackle our pantry, which is very spacious for our apartment but wasn’t organized at all. So, I went to dumping all the extra or old spices that were dried up, crusty, and that I never used.


I also decided it was a good time to do a sugar cleanse and tossed all the foods we’d held onto “just in case” we wanted them: half-eaten boxes of cookies, items with added sugar and/or fake ingredients, and extra mason jars that were taking up space and that I never used. A good rule of thumb for me for clothes and household items is that if I haven’t used them at all over the past year (and especially if I totally forgot about them), toss them and move on!

Now my pantry looks a little something like this:

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(with my reminders in little sticky notes on there!)

Lastly, I tackled the refrigerator. I wasn’t as crazy as to go too far and actually clean the thing, but I did decided to throw out the added sugar sauces and half-eaten jars. Over the summer, I was enjoying s’mores occasionally, dark chocolate nightly, and my weekly licorice treat, and it occurred to me that if I was cleaning up my home I should think about what I’m putting in my body. Sure, you can be fit and healthy and function well with a #moderation365 approach, but every now and then it’s good to not give yourself any outs or options to indulge in what doesn’t contribute to your body’s energy and recovery needs. So that’s just what I did!


Is it hard for you to keep things kept up in your kitchen?

After tossing the extras and seeing a bare fridge, I restocked with lots of fresh vegetables, no-sugar-added meats, full fat cream in place of anything low fat (where there is added sugar), and then discovered a few new products to try out.



My sister-in-law, Catherine, shared with me the benefits of “true cinnamon” versus conventional cinnamon, or the difference between ceylon and cassia. Here’s a great article that explains the differences between the cinnamons from the same family and why they aren’t that much different for your body (unless consuming huge amounts). Despite that, I’ve been out of my (beloved coffee-topper, breakfast addition, dinner sprinkler) cinnamon so when I was out at the natural foods store I picked some up:


And lastly, in an effort to clean up the rest of my life, I joined a client in making a pact and tackling our sleep together. Every night at 9 pm, we text one another to make sure our screens are off so we can begin shutting down. He told me about an app he uses, Sleep Cycle, to track how well he’s sleeping, so I immediately downloaded the Sleep Cycle App Bundle (about $3) and am finding it fascinating to track my sleep. More and more I’m learning about (or rather, finally taking to heart,) the value of sleep; Kindal just wrote a post all about it! I’m finding that I have more time on my hands when I’m not scrolling Instagram or reading blogs at night. I’m prepping earlier for my clients, feeling more prepared for each day, doing random dishes instead of letting them pile up, remembering to water the plants, and reading other books again. I’m not perfect every night but this accountability (thanks, Zach!) is welcome and I’m getting more rest with my Monday – Friday early clients.

We both also (unknowingly) picked up some of this tea:


And I have to admit, it knocks me out a bit! Not right away, but I can feel myself getting sleepy. So I’m not using it every night, but everything in it is natural so I’m not worried as long as it doesn’t become a sleep aid. I think the no-screen thing is helping prepare me for bed the best! I’m finally following my own advice and those that know that sleep is key to recovery, muscle growth and even weight loss. Sleep for better EVERYthing!

And those are the ways I’m cleaning up my life right now. You know what? It feels really good. The main thing is I just decided to go for it and stop saying, “I’ll clean up my closet next weekend” or, “I’ll take a look at my sugar consumption after that last summer s’more…” It feels good and being more minimal in my food, my life, my STUFF just feels good.

When’s the last time you had a good clean-out? Want to join me in a good fall clean-up?

Live well & be well, friends,


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Hey guys!

Coming at you from beautiful Calgary at the tail end of summer. Who’s ready for a change in weather? Truthfully, although I’m not anxious for summer to be done because that season is so short here, I’m excited about fall: crisp air (perfect for running!), great flavors and tastes (pumpkin, cinnamon, etc!) and a feeling of change and transition. We indeed are making some changes in our life with Mikey going to grad school (for Community Health Sciences) at the University of Calgary and focusing on working hard so we can move out in a year. Our summer trips are almost done (we leave Saturday for the last one out in BC!) and then we’ll be pretty stationary in Calgary focusing on working, investing in our community and staying consistent here.

Do you have any changes coming up? How do you feel about them? I’ll share more as the transitions occur with how we’re feeling and go more in depth with them, but for today I thought I’d switch things up a little with a vlog and a fun little survey – would love to hear your answers too!

This or That!

1. Run/workout in the heat and humidity or freezing temps and snow?

2. Have washbord abs or flat abs?

3. Dr. Oz or The Doctors?

4. Cardio or strength?

5. Cravings: Protein or carbs?

6. Jillian Michaels or Bob Harper?

7. Frozen yogurt or ice cream?

8. To train: upper body or lower body?

9. Protein powder or food with protein?

10. Lunges or squats?

11. Sweet or salty?

12. Workout attire: cute or comfy?

13. Body pump or heavy lifting?

14. Yoga or pilates?

15. Nike or Adidas?

16. Running on the treadmill or outdoors?

17. Whole Foods or Trader Joe’s?

18. Summer or Winter Olympics?

19. Exercise classes or videos?

20. Steamed veggies or roasted ones?

What about YOU? Lunges or squats? Whole Foods or Trader Joe’s?  Jillian or Bob? …I want to know. 😀

In other news, I had a GREAT workout today. I completed Marianne‘s just-posted Comeback Workout and LOVED it! I did it with almost the same weights as she posted and the same amount of sets. At the end of the workout, I threw in 10 rounds of 5 squat clean & presses (50 lbs) and 10 24″ box jumps, giving me 50 squat clean & presses plus 100 high box jumps. It was tough but I focused on form and pushed through! Felt great afterward!

Yesterday I prepped some food and it felt great to be ready the night before! I posted it on my facebook page but thought I’d share this taste of what I brought to work for the day:

Food prep

Some curry chicken with peppers, sweet potatoes and tumeric; some hummus with rice cakes and cucumbers, a just-in-case protein bar (ate half and then the other fourth later as a snack) and a tub of spinach for a green smoothie (which I didn’t make but will likely do tomorrow!). Unpictured was a hard boiled egg which hit the spot; felt so good to fuel up with good things!

In between my gym and home clients yesterday I stopped at the mall to use 2 $25 gift cards. Guess where I went? Lululemon. If I can use money towards a purchase there it’s a safe bet I’m going to do it even if I “need” a dress or different pair of shoes or bra. With my gift cards and my discount to the store (as a health professional – you can get one too! 20% off!), my total for 2 items came to $9.00…not bad!


Vinyasa Scarf 


Wandering Yogi Bar (on sale for $19!)

And in other fun news, I went to breakfast with my good friend Emily this morning! We dined at the Diner Deluxe – one of mine and Mikey’s favorite spots! Great food, good atmosphere, and even better company. Definitely recommend it if you’re in Calgary!



(Emily’s pregnant with a little guy and due in October! She’s SO cute – a southern belle! – and it was wonderful to connect again.)


On that note, it’s training time. A few more clients then tea with a friend! Shaping up to be a pretty great Wednesday. Make it a good one! Live well & be well friends,


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Hey everyone! Happy Wednesday to you. 🙂 I hope this day finds you feeling motivated, encouraged and inspired. If it doesn’t, remember that the opposite feelings must be present in our lives at some point and I hope you are persevering through your hardships.

I thought I’d share a few updates with you since I last wrote:

I’ve been loving some new workout gear my mom sent me (thanks, Mom!)…care packages, especially ones filled with workout clothes, are the best! 😀 I love this sports bra from Fila and don’t own anything like it: supportive AND stylish. And a great color! Makes me ready to move when I put it on.

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I also received some new workout crops that are from Fila too; usually the hint of yellow is covered by a longer shirt/tank but I like the accent and love the way they fit. I’ve been rocking them out using my Ultimate Sandbag, dip station and while working on my ninja tuck jump skills.

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Ninja Tuck Jump

What’s your favorite brand of workout gear? I’ve been known to wear anything from anywhere, but as a personal trainer the bright colors, clean cuts and quality materials of a brand like lululemon or Fila really make me look and feel more professional, and so far I’m loving trying a new brand!

While we’re talking workout clothes, let’s talk workouts! …been working out anything good lately? I always love to hear if you try a good circuit or something new to you. If you’re not sure where to start but want to release the animal within, check out Lindsay‘s compilation of moves from yesterday’s Tuesday Trainer!


It’s all about animalistic moves and is a HIIT (high intensity interval training)-style workout guaranteed to get your heart pumping and your muscles burning. Here’s the video (in my Fila gear, again – I tend to over-wear things! ;)) that I submitted:

By means of another update, Mikey got into grad school yesterday! While we were hoping this would happen and felt some level of confidence about his interview, it’s still a nervous unknown in the waiting time, but yesterday he got the news that he’s in! That means after our summer of Survive & Thrive trips he’ll be a student again pursuing Community Health Sciences in September. Wahoo! We are so thankful for God’s leading and direction in this way in our lives and trust that he will now provide the means for us to afford the schooling and juggle this new phase of life.

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We celebrated well with our small group last night (which meets every Tuesday for good food and good dialogue) on the actual “Fat Tuesday” or Mardi Gras! We nicknamed our group “Fat Tuesday” because we eat well and always have a good glass of wine and some dessert with our conversation, so it was fun to celebrate with food and friends on a special night. We brought a log cake from Dairy Queen (it’s our go-to celebratory cake) while Zeal made sauteed mushrooms, BBQ’ed pork, sweet potato fries and spaghetti squash; Ben and Christy supplied a spinach salad and Edith brought the wine. Emily made a festive dish – a king cake! Oh man was it ever delicious – like a giant cinnamon roll! It’s a traditional Mardi Gras dessert?



You’re supposed to hide a little baby Jesus figurine in the cake and whoever gets it makes the cake the following year. Emily didn’t have a little baby Jesus and her cake was so good…so we all agreed she could re-make it next year. 😉 No pictures from the night but good eats and peeps to make it a wonderful Tuesday. 😀

Got any bits of news to share with me? Leave a comment and let’s talk about it! I’d love to hear if you celebrated Mardi Gras at all, what workout gear you’re loving and if you’ve had an experience in grad school…as a spouse and supporter, what should I prepare for?

Have a great Wednesday you guys! Live well & be well,


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