Define “Succeeding”

I just have to post this today!  So often I hear people get down on themselves in the area of weight loss because they aren’t seeing the results they were expecting.   Yes, I’ve been there, and still go there from time to time BUT one of the biggest lessons I’ve learned is that you have to redefine what you class as “Succeeding”.

What if succeeding is defined as challenging yourself and taking positive steps towards a healthier you?  What if you felt like you were succeeding just by lacing up your running shoes and going for a walk or by choosing a healthier choice for lunch?

The problem with viewing being successful in relation to a goal as getting to the finish line (whatever that is for you) is that there is long journey to get there.  No wonder people feel like throwing in the towel before they start.  It’s too much!

Choosing to live a healthier lifestyle means living!  Be proud of yourself daily when you make positive choices.  The idea of  feeling pride only when you reach the end is depriving yourself of so many celebrations along the way.

Here’s what I know.

If you continue to make positive choices…you will see positive results.  Positive In, Positive Out.  It’s a fact. They may not happen in the time frame your mind wants them too, but they WILL happen.

If you want results a little faster, than move less.  It’s that simple.  Find out what works for you.  Pursue it with passion and drive.

Sometimes we just have to redefine success in our minds.  There is no “end”.  It’s a lifetime of taking better care of yourself  but guess what?! That’s exciting!  The moment you wrap your mind around that, is the moment you have succeeded.  Isn’t that powerful?!  I’m excited for you!

You will feel successful every day you treat yourself a little better…and that can come in all forms through: The mind, the body, and the soul.  Find those things that bring happiness and meaning into your life and enjoy them!

I will leave you with some music I love!  Mumford and Sons are so different and the lyrics within their music are so powerful!  Also give a listen to “Little Lion Man” by Mumford and Sons.  Love, love, love them 🙂

From my heart to yours,


5 Year Anniversary!

Today marks 5 years of being at my goal weight!  I am so thankful and happy that I’m still there!

It seems fitting today, that I recount some important life lessons I have learned over these past 5 years.

I have learned…

I COULD do it!  What a revelation after years of being stuck at a place I didn’t want to be.

I was waaaaay stronger than I realized.  I had no idea I could exercise with results and actually learn to love it.  I finally found the courage to challenge myself, and soak up the benefits.

I am not defined by being the fat girl.  What I portrayed on the outside did not match what I felt on the inside.  It’s not about what I weigh now or then, it’s about taking control, loving who I am/was, and taking the steps to being the person I wanted to be.

The biggest obstacle I had to overcome was my negativity and the way I used to cast blame on others.   It’s all on me.  There will always be a reason not to do something that is difficult.  Life is busy.  So what. I had to put my big girl panties on and just deal with it.  Ha ha! There will never be a “right” time.  The right time is now.

I am weak, and I am strong….It’s OK to be weak because on the flip side of the coin, I am strong.  Yin/Yang.

Judging others based on how they look, what they wear, how they chose to live their lives is just plain ridiculous and takes away from the only thing I should worry about…and that’s my own choices.

This is me now….a girl that still sports tummy rolls and stretch marks.  They are a story of where I have come from.  I earned them.

There will always be some people who don’t support your goals and dreams…but there are many people who do.  Value the ones who do, and don’t worry about the ones who don’t.  You have no idea where they are coming from and what they have been through in their lives. Most of the time it isn’t even personal.

Positive OUT…Positive IN.  The best things in life have come when I put the positive out first.

It’s not about losing weight.  Losing the weight is a result of taking control back.   I prefer to think of it as a bonus.

I am thankful for the place I’ve come from….

And for the place I’m at now…a place where I get to support others in their goals and dreams while I continue to pursue my own.

Thank you to everyone that had a part in supporting me.  I appreciate you and your giving hearts.

From my heart to yours,


Beauty from Within

Happy Mother’s Day to all the wonderful mothers who are so selfless with their time and generous with their love & devotion.  I had an amazing day with my family today.  I am one lucky Mom!

This past week, my heart was touched by an experience I want to share with you!  It seems appropriate to share it on Mother’s day.  During my childhood/teen years I struggled with self-esteem issues, as many teenage girls do.  It wasn’t until I was close to 30 years old that I really figured out who I was and owned it!

I have a daughter and I realize more than ever how important it is to lift her up, to tell her she’s beautiful, and support her as she grows and realizes who she is.  Who is she to me?  She’s a smart, beautiful, funny, inquisitive, lively yet introspective, loving little girl.  I can’t wait to see who she will become as a tweenie, as a teen, as a young woman.

The job of trying to raise a daughter who values who she is, weighs heavily on my shoulders.  It’s so important.  Everyday as I drop my kids off at the doors of their school I tell them to “Just be the best YOU you can be”.  That’s all I can hope for.

My sister Roxy has this amazing friend Michelle whom I met a few times during my teen years.   I hadn’t heard from her for years until a couple of months ago my phone rang and her cheerful voice greeted me on the other end.

She works with youth in Edmonton.  She was inspired by a program ran in Alberta called “Beauty from the Inside Out”.  She has tailored her own program here in Edmonton, where over a period of a few weeks, she works with a group of  preteen girls to boost their self-esteem.  She works with the girls to explore the art of self-expression through play, communication, and positive thought.  She empowers them to be exactly who they are and embrace their beauty inside and out.  What a wonderful program, the world needs more wonderful people like Michelle!

She asked me if I would volunteer my photography services for the girl’s graduation day.  They had several other services donated for their graduation: Clothing, hair, and makeup.  I jumped at the opportunity!

As I drove to the shoot, I prayed that I would be able to capture each girl’s unique beauty both on the inside and on the outside.   I met 11 beautiful, lively, giggly girls!  They were incredible!  I brought a dry-erase board with me and asked each girl to write something empowering about themselves….they wrote statements such as

“I am Beautiful”

“I am an Artist”

“I am Smart”

I took pictures of each girl proudly holding up their statement.  They had a lot of fun posing for me, and I was so drawn into their sparkly eyes that carried within them so much wisdom and strength for their young years.

I left the shoot feeling so empowered!  I watched their confidence grow with each click of the shutter.  These young girls will grow up to be amazing, confident, strong women.   I am reminded once again, to empower my children to be the best version of themselves they can be.

From my own experiences, I have learned there is power in words…both uplifting and demeaning.  There are damaging messages all around in magazine and T.V. ads that support the idea that women/girls need to change who they are to meet a certain standard of beauty…yet the pictures we stare at are airbrushed and manipulated.  They aren’t real!

So, I just want to thank and encourage all you Moms that take the time to uplift your children daily.

To all those Moms…

Who kiss their kids on the forehead when they fall, and encourage them to get back up.

Who impart the wisdom they have learned over the years, and support and nurture their children to figure out their unique path in life.

Who encourage their children to go after their passions and dreams and to make no apologies for being themselves.

Who show their children what compassion, love, and kindness looks like.

Who teach their children that a true measure of beauty comes from what’s in their heart, not what’s on the outside.

What a gift children are to all of us and what a blessing it is to make a difference in their lives.  Happy Mother’s Day!

From my heart to yours,