How does your exercise routine change with the seasons?

The days are getting shorter, colder and darker here in the Midwest.  I find it becomes harder and harder to get up early and exercise (let alone get outside!).  What’s a girl to do?

How DO you manage the change in seasons?

The leaves are just starting to change!

The leaves are just starting to change!

If this sounds like your current situation, its important to consciously switch things up and move with the flow of the seasons changing versus trying to fight it and stick with what you’ve been doing.  Otherwise, if you aren’t careful, it’s all too easy to let inertia take over and then before you know it, it’s New Year’s Day and you haven’t move energetically in months.

Wouldn’t you rather close out the year feeling happy and healthy?  Yep.  Me too.

Ready for some ideas?  Here are mine and I’d love to see yours in the comments!

  • Try a new sport or exercise – nothing like trying something new to get excited about exercise again!
  • Change the time of the day you work out.  Although I like morning best, if it’s very dark, sometimes I’m better off sleeping an extra half an hour and doing a quick run on the treadmill at lunchtime.
  • Change your activity to accommodate the weather (and have a backup ready).  For example, this time of the year it might be lovely to take a long hike in the woods – enjoy the crisp air and relish the multiple colors of fall leaves.  BUT, if you wake up ready to hike with your family and it’s pouring, you could pop in a Just Dance video or some tunes on your iPod and dance around for an hour.
  • Try an inside exercise class – maybe spin versus bike rides, or a dance class versus outdoor runs

What will you be doing to keep your fitness goals in the forefront as the season changes?  Is this an area you need help or motivation with?  I love to work with my one-on-one clients to help them create the perfect routine for each season of their life.  Contact me for a 30 minute breakthrough session and we can pinpoint the top 3 areas you need to evaluate to create the happy and healthy life you desire!

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Creamy Kale Dip

This recipe is a fun alternative to the traditional spinach artichoke dip.  It tastes very similar so it’s an easy foray into Kale for someone who is a bit scared to try this unique green . . .Kale Dip

Creamy Kale Dip

1/2 cup chopped onion

2 cloves garlic, finely chopped

1 bunch kale, chopped (remove stems)

1 cup cream cheese

1/4 cup mayo

2 T milk

sea salt

freshly ground pepper

1/2 t. hot sauce or siracha

3/4 cup Parmesan cheese (freshly grated best)

extra virgin olive oil

Step one:  Heat oven to 425.  Rub an 8 x 8 casserole dish lightly with olive oil.  In a medium skillet, heat about a T of oil over medium heat.  Add onion and garlic and cook 3 to 4 minutes, or until fragrant.  Add kale, cook 10 minutes or until wilted.

Kale, Onion and Garlic

Step two:  In a large bowl, beat cream cheese, mayo and milk until smooth.  Stir in hot sauce and then kale mixture along with 1/4 cup of the Parmesan cheese.  Season with salt and pepper.  Pour into casserole and top with rest of Parmesan.  Bake uncovered 30 to 45 minutes.

Serve with crackers, bread and/or veggies.

Have fun with this – take it to a party and see if anyone else suspects it’s not the normal spinach dip!

Looking to start each day off feeling GREAT?  Get your FREE copy of my 3 day e-course “Discover the Perfect Start to  Your Day” and you’ll be there in no time!!!

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Crunchy Kale Chips!

This has got to be the easiest way to enjoy Kale – and it’s very tasty too!kale

Crunchy Kale Chips

1 head kale – remove stems and tear into chip size pieces

extra virgin olive oil

sea salt

Simply pre-heat your oven to 325, spread the kale over a cookie sheet, drizzle with oil and salt and then use your hands to mix it all up.  Bake at 325 for about 15 to 20 minutes until crunchy (depends upon the size of your kale chips and your oven).  Make sure and flip them all around at least once during the baking process.  Cool and enjoy!

Crazy for Kale!

Kale is pretty trendy right now.  Chances are, even if you haven’t tried it, you’ve at least heard of it – am I right?fresh kale

As it turns out, kale is in vogue right now for a good reason – it is incredibly healthy (and delicious too!).  Kale is available year round, but it tends to be the tastiest in the late fall/ early winter (after it’s been exposed to some cold weather or even a frost).

When you prepare kale, make sure and remove the stalks – they are edible, but bitter and chewy.  Although kale will last quite a long time in the fridge, it does become more bitter as it ages.

Want to eat a LARGE serving of something for very little in the way of calories?  A cup of kale has only 33 calories, 1 gram of fiber and is chock full of folate, potassium and calcium.  It’s also very rich in anti-inflammatories – good stuff!

Kale is super versatile – you can treat substitute it for spinach in pretty much any dish (or saute it like you would spinach).  I have a few tasty dishes that I strictly use kale for, and I’ll share them this month.  One of our favorites is this Kale Pesto – it is simple and oh so yummy!

So if you haven’t been brave enough to give kale a go, I encourage you to go buy a bunch at the store or farmer’s market and try some new dishes this month!

Need inspiration in getting dinner on the table each night?  Learn the magic of menu planning in my e-course “Menu Planing Made Easy.”  Thanks to my fool-proof method, I can smell the posole bubbling away on the stove – I had all the ingredients on hand, and it’ll be ready to enjoy this evening!

Weekly Goals October 7 to 11

Last Week’s GoalsPlanning


  • Complete my most dreaded task first every daydone
  • Create advertisement for November webinar
  • Keep up with coaching coursework - done
  • Finish October blog posts – didn’t even start . . .



  • Date nighthad a wonderful time trying out a new restaurant (La Mulita) and going to see Mama Mia
  • Celebrate final week of soccer & baseballit was COLD but we had fun watching the last games of the season
  • Book a ski trip for the winter – I have got to get this done soon or we’ll end up skiing just once this winter!!!!


  • Update/ change? insurancedone
  • Finish cleaning up my office – this task may never be done – maybe I need to change it to clean off my desk each night
  • Trip to Goodwilldone

This Week’s Goals


  • Complete my most dreaded task first every day
  • Create advertisement for November webinar
  • Keep up with coaching coursework
  • Finish October blog posts


  • Up by 6:30 Monday – Friday
  • Read 2 books
  • Drink 6 glasses of water a day!
  • Update my music playlists on my ipod (move to Spotify?)


  • Date night
  • Prepare for Fall Break
  • Book a ski trip for the winter


  • Clean out 1 drawer of the filing cabinet
  • Clean off my desk each evening
  • Finish canning apples (we had a windfall of free apples from a friend)

Looking to start each day off feeling GREAT?  Get your FREE copy of my 3 day e-course “Discover the Perfect Start to  Your Day” and you’ll be there in no time!!!

*this post contains affiliate links

September Book Review Roundup

For some reason September was pretty much all Fiction reading for me . . . unusual as I tend to bounce back and forth between fiction and non-fiction – maybe I just need some good recommendations for non-fiction!!!  I’m sharing my favorites from the month below, and you can find all the rest HERE.

Having read Me Before You: A Novel  by JoJo Moyes back in January (see review here), I knew I had to try a few of her other novels. One Plus One: A Novel did not disappoint.  Take two VERY different people, with completely different lifestyles and throw them together for hours on the road in a car, and you get quite an entertaining story.   Their paths weren’t easy and weren’t perfect, but that made the book much more interesting.  I didn’t love it as much as Me Before You, but it was still a solid read.  My rating 3.5 out of 5.

Carry On, Warrior: The Power of Embracing Your Messy, Beautiful Life by Glennon Melton was another book I enjoyed this month.  Glennon blogs at Momastrey and her writing is raw, courageous and emotional (along with funny which I love!).  Each chapter reads like a little essay, and there is plenty of wisdom to be plucked out of them.  My favorite (and it’s also posted HERE on her blog) is the letter to read to your child before he/she goes back to school.  I just love this!  Worth the price of the book to have a copy of this letter alone!  My rating 4.5 out of 5.

Twenties Girl: A Novel by Sophie Kinsella (of Shopaholic fame) was a fun read – this is one of those ideal vacation books.  Lighthearted, a bit goofy and with a nice, happy ending.  It took me a bit to get into it – I wasn’t sure I bought into the storyline of Lara being visited by the ghost of her great Aunt Sophie, but once I kept reading I found I didn’t care if it was far-fetched as it was quite fun.  My rating: 4 out of 5.

So what should I read in October?  I just loaded up my requests at the library, but again most of those books are fiction – I need a few good non-fiction books to round things out.  Any suggestions?

*This post contains affiliate links.

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Weekly Goals September 29 – October 5

It’s October this week – one of my favorite month’s of the year.  The weather is so nice and there are so many fun things to do!

Last Week’s GoalsWeekly Goals


  • Complete my most dreaded task first every daydone
  • October newsletterdone, if you don’t receive it, sign up HERE
  • Keep up with coaching courseworkdone
  • Work on upcoming webinar (details coming soon)



  • Date nighthad a date “lunch” instead, which was still lots of fun
  • One on one outing with each kidhad a fun day with my son – burritos and mini golf, and then an ice cream date with my daughter
  • Book a ski trip for the winter


  • Update/ change? insurance – started on this finally, but haven’t finished
  • Create October Master “To-do” listdone
  • Finish cleaning up my office

This Week’s Goals


  • Complete my most dreaded task first every day
  • Create advertisement for November webinar
  • Keep up with coaching coursework
  • Finish October blog posts


  • Up by 6:30 Monday – Friday
  • Read 2 books
  • Drink 6 glasses of water a day!
  • ENJOY my next business trip


  • Date night
  • Celebrate final week of soccer & baseball
  • Book a ski trip for the winter


  • Update/ change? insurance
  • Finish cleaning up my office
  • Trip to Goodwill

Any exciting plans?  What is your favorite thing to do in October?  Mine is a toss up between all the Halloween events (like Headless Horseman, ZooBoo & the Children’s Museum party), and the simple things like walking to the park and enjoying wine on the screened in porch while we still can!

Looking to start each day off feeling GREAT?  Get your FREE copy of my 3 day e-course “Discover the Perfect Start to  Your Day” and you’ll be there in no time!!!

*this post contains affiliate links


Are you LIVING your values? Part 2

“Tell me what you pay attention to and I will tell you who you are.”

~Jose Ortega y Gasset

(If you are joining us for the first time today, stop reading, and go to THIS POST, read and create your list – then come right back!)Living your values

I love the above quote from Jose Ortega y Gaseet.  To me, this is the BIG question – does your lifestyle reflect your values?  If it doesn’t, then you aren’t really living your values are you?  And what does that tell you about your values and your life?  Maybe they aren’t really as important to you as you thought.  But, if they ARE, then it’s time to re-examine your life and figure out how you CAN start living your values.

It might be as simple as saying no more often.  I try to remind myself that every time I say no to something that doesn’t align with my values, it allows me the freedom to say YES to things that do align.

Let me give you a simple example of not living your values . . .

Say one of your key values is a healthy life.  But, you never exercise, you don’t eat well, don’t take time for personal or spiritual growth, or even work on your relationships.  Even though you proclaim a healthy life is a value, you aren’t living it, are you?  This means that either you really don’t value it as much as you think you do, or you are saying yes to many other things that are crowding out what you truly care about – your health.

Sound familiar?  It’s much harder to say no than to say yes isn’t it?

So what can you do?

Action item:

  • Take a look at your values from last week.
  • Now, take a peek at your calendar.  Do they match up?  Are you spending your time on what you truly care about?
  • If not, how can you change that?
  • Spend fifteen minutes brainstorming how  you can move your life more in accordance with your core values.

This isn’t easy, and it may be months before you see a shift in how you live your life, but if you focus on living out your values, you’ll find life more rewarding, you’ll be happier and healthier.

What are you going to do this week to make an immediate shift?  Cancel something you planned to do because you felt you had to?  Disengage yourself from a committee or project?  Ask for help with housecleaning, work, exercise?  Share your plans in the comments or on my Facebook page – publicly declaring your intentions will help keep you accountable and make it real.

Feel like you need more help living your values?  Maybe even discovering your values?  Work with me one-on-one and we’ll dig deep to figure out what you want most out of life and how to get there! Sign up for your FREE discovery session TODAY.

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Vote for your favorite recipe and WIN!

WIN a $50 American Express gift card just for voting!!!


Check out this very fun contest by SavingStar.  Just vote for your favorite recipe and you can WIN a $50 American Express card!

Of course I’d love it if you vote for my fake spaghetti (spaghetti squash), but honestly all the recipes look so good it’s hard to pick one!

While you are there, sign up for SavingStar – it is a great way to save money on groceries – and I LOVE that every week they have a healthy pick – for instance this week, you can sign up to save 20% off apples – how great is that?




The Ultimate Apple Crisp

Still using up our apples from our trip to the apple orchard earlier this month.  This recipe isn’t particularly low in calories, nor it is a super-duper health food, but wow is it delicious!  I’ve even been known to enjoy it for breakfast with a hot cup of coffee.   It’s really a perfect once in a while treat . . .

Ultimate Apple CrispApple crisp recipe


3/4 c. flour

1/3 c. sugar

1/3 c. brown sugar

pinch salt

1/2 c. oatmeal (not quick cooking)

1 stick cold butter, diced


5 or 6 apples, peeled and sliced

zest of half an orange

zest of half a lemon

2 T orange juice

1/4 cup sugar

1 t. cinnamon

1/2 t. nutmeg

Step one:  Preheat oven to 325.  Make the crumble – mix the dry ingredients in a mixer and add the butter.  Mix until it starts to ball up – I use my stand mixer which makes it quick and easy.

crumbleStep two: Place the apples in a 9×9 greased pan and top with rest of filling ingredients.  Mix it all up well with your hands.

apple crisp fillingStep three:  Pour the crumble on top of the apples and mix it in a little (most of crumble should still be on top).

unbaked apple crispStep four:  Bake for 40 – 50 minutes (or until apples are soft).  Enjoy!

Do you have any “once in a while” recipes?  Ones that aren’t super healthy, but that you make for your family on occasion just because they love it?  What are they and why are they special?

Need help getting started each day?  Get your FREE copy of my 3-day e-course “Discover the Perfect Start to Your Day.” and start each day feeling happy and whole!

Shared on WFMW, Real Food Wednesday and The Mommy Club