The Circle of Life

So where does your health coaching journey begin, you ask?

In my practice, we begin with The Circle of Life exercise. It takes less than 5 minutes to complete, and it gives you a visual of where you’re thriving and what areas of your life need some love and attention. As your health coach, together we discuss your results and allow them to guide our sessions and “homework” assignments between each.

Personally, I complete this exercise once every three months or so as a check in for myself, and I find it really motivating because it gives me guideposts of where to focus my energy moving forward. In fact, here’s one I completed just today! Right now I’m feeling fairly balanced, which is exciting to see because I recently made some big life changes (our second son was born, I made the decision to stay home full time with both of our boys, you get the idea!), and I’ve been purposeful with how I spend my time and with whom. It’s validating to see that mirrored back in my results, especially because more often than not my Circle looks more like a Pac Man than, well, a circle!

I also use the results of my Wheel of Life to help craft my vision board, but that’s another blog post completely 😉

You can’t control everything in life, but you CAN control how you show up for it. And this tool helps you see where you need to be more purposeful. Because at the end of the day, you have to decide if you’re going to let life happen to you, or if you’re happening to it.

Complete your own Circle of Life today! And if you’re interested in pursuing your health and wellness goals further, visit my Contact page to schedule a complimentary Health History call today. I’d love to see if we’d be a good fit for my Six Month Coaching Program!

What’s your Why?

Have you ever thought about what motivates you to stay committed to personal growth when things get tough? Whether you’re an intrinsically or externally motivated person, it’s so important to know your why, because that keeps you reaching for more day in and day out.

My “why” is a love and passion for others and wanting them to feel vibrant and strong. It’s what motivated me as a yoga teacher why I’m growing my health coaching practice. Seeing others succeed fills me with so much joy, and equipping others to lead lives of purpose is absolutely my calling.

Another “why” of mine are our sweet boys. I want them to grow up seeing their mom kicking ass – through running and doing yoga to be physically strong, financially through entrepreneurship, and emotionally as an exceptional wife & mom. I want them to see someone who’s kind but won’t compromise on personal principles, who empowers and lifts others up but knows the importance of pouring into yourself first. Because, after all, you can’t pour from an empty vessel.

And finally, I’m my last “why.” I want to feel strong in my body, loving in my heart, and calm in my mind. I work towards greater health and wellness because I get this one life and this one body, and I owe it to myself to go all in. For myself. My husband. My boys. My community.

So friends, what’s your “why?” What will keep you committed to your health goals? Your relationship goals? Your life goals? It all starts with your why.

Interested in partnering with a health coach as you focus on your own wellness and hone in on your why? If so, hit me up to schedule a complimentary health history call to see if we’d partner well together on your health journey!

Ending 2019 with Intention, Joy, and Gratitude

What does your holiday season typically look like? If it’s like mine, it’s oriented around food and family. But often times, it comes at the expense of my good habits and routines.

So this year, I’m taking a more intentional approach to the last three months of the year and signed up for Rachel Hollis’ #last90days challenge.

The challenge is simple. Follow these steps, called the Five to Thrive, EVERY 👏🏼 SINGLE 👏🏼 DAY.

  • Drink half your body weight in ounces in water
  • Write down 5 things you’re grateful for (I use my Start Today Journal for this one, which also includes writing down my 10 big, hairy, audacious goals!
  • Wake up and hour earlier than normal and use that time for yourself
  • Remove a category of food from your diet
  • Move your body for 30 minutes

Since we have two kids under two, and Conrad’s nursing is going really well (so I don’t want to change much since it’s working and he’s growing like a champ), I’m abridging two of the items to make it work for my life as it is right now.

  • Presently, I’m nursing anywhere from 1-3 times a night depending on how Conrad’s doing, so instead of waking up an hour early which would be hard on nights I get little sleep, I’ve decided to instead give myself a set bed time and wake up time. So my goal for the 90 days is to be in bed and resting by 9pm, and then up out of bed and starting my day by 5:30am. However, if we have an epically bad night (we’ve had a few where my FitBit tracked a grand total of 3 hours of sleep 🙈), I reserve the right to rest.
  • Instead of removing a category of food from the way I eat, I’m going to use a principle I learned during my health coach training at the Institute for Integrative Nutrition called “crowding out.” So instead of removing something from my diet, I’ll add something nourishing instead. Each month from October – December I’ll add something different, but to start it’s going to be a Fab Four smoothie every morning to start to day off right.

So that’s it! My plan to end the year with intention, joy, and gratitude. It starts October 1st, so if you want to join it’s not too late to sign up. Let’s keep each other motivated and accountable friends!

Hit me up in social at @mskatehouse and let’s share in this journey together 👊🏼

Just Buy the Pants!

Has your body changed over the years, but you find yourself wearing clothing from an earlier you that’s either too big or too snug?

After having two babies in three years, my body has changed 👏🏼 a 👏🏼 lot.

I can honestly say that I love myself in this moment, because this incredible body grew, birthed, and sustained these two little humans, and I’m so grateful for those experiences.

But this season has left my body softer than before, and my old clothing doesn’t feel quite right to wear. Pre-baby clothing is too tight. Maternity clothes too big. And frankly, it just makes me feel crumby to wear pants specifically that are mammoth on me now or squeeze my hips and conjure up old insecurities I’ve worked hard to move past.

So I decided to go out and buy a few pairs of pants and a couple tops that make me feel kick ass. And friends, I feel even more confident because of it!

I know this might sound silly or frivolous, but I challenge you to pick up something that makes you feel rad and then see if your mind’s been changed. “Look good, feel good,” is a real thing. At least for me.

I’m not saying you need a full wardrobe makeover. But I am saying that there’s something about wearing clothes that fit and you feel good in that puts a little swagger in your step.

And I don’t care what anyone else thinks about how you look in these new duds (after all, somebody else’s opinion of you is none of your business, so says Rachel Hollis!). What I do care about is how YOU feel in them.

No need to spend a bundle. I went to Old Navy and found one pair of jeggings (yes, you heard that right, I feel fabulous in them and I welcome your jegging judgment 😉) that I bought in three different washes for a little variety. And two tops. And hell yes I feel sexy in these clothes and there’s a little jaunt in my step when I wear them.

So even though my body is still changing and these clothes may or may not fit in a year or two or three, there’s no reason I can’t be purposeful in this part of my life and choose to wear something that makes me feel fabulous instead of frumpy.

So friends. I challenge you to remove from your wardrobe the clothes that don’t make you feel bright. Stop putting off simple pleasures for when you hit some future goal and lean into who you are today. Don’t stop reaching and growing and bettering yourself – but don’t forget to celebrate this moment too. Because from where I’m standing, you’re pretty damn incredible here and now.

On the Offense with Food Prep

How hard is it for you to make good food decisions when you’re already hungry? For me, nearly impossible. I get hungry (or hangry if we’re being honest), and all I can think of are unhealthy foods – imagine milkshakes, French fries, chocolate…the list goes on.

But how easy would it be to choose something healthy and nourishing to your body if it were already prepared for you and waiting in your fridge or pantry?

Well friends, I can tell you from recent personal experience what a game-changer food prepping has been for our family. We went on the offense in our meal prep game soon after our second son was born. Now as a family of four, our attention is even more focused on the kiddos and we have less bandwidth during the week to cook breakfast, lunch, dinner, and even snacks. So, we decided a change was in order.

Our approach has been multi-pronged, and it looks something like this:

  • Twice weekly trips to Trader Joe’s to purchase supplies for 3-4 days’ worth of meals and snacks
  • Planning out all of our meals ahead of time and writing out a shopping list, which is in a shared note that both my husband and I can access on our iPhones (we usually end up with him doing the first food run, and our boys and I doing the other later in the week)
  • Then we spend Sundays and either Wednesday or Thursday nights prepping. Here’s what a recent shopping/meal list looked like.

Breakfast

  • Oatmeal with berries and nuts
  • English muffins with peanut butter and a side of fruit

Lunch

  • Martha Stewart’s Bean Salad
  • Salads with chopped veggies and Trader Joe’s fresh dressings
  • Steam broccoli and string beans
  • Leftovers from the three below dinners

Dinner

  • Cookie and Kate’s Black Bean Sweet Potato Enchiladas
  • Cookie and Kate’s Lentil Soup with fresh sourdough bread
  • Veganomicon’s “Mac and Cheese”

Snacks

  • Dried mango slices
  • Trail mix
  • Bananas, blackberries, blueberries
  • Various cheeses and crackers

One thing that radically changed the game for us was purchasing glass food storage containers. Now I can see inside everything in our refrigerator and no longer forget what’s in there and only realize I wanted to eat it after it’s already gone bad. I also appreciate that the glass container doubles as the bowl I eat my meal out of, so there’s less clean up! We ordered a variety of sizes, but I’m really loving this Bento Box inspired design for lunches especially.

Food prepping is still a work in progress, and we’re certainly learning as we go, but I can confidently say that I’ve never eaten this healthy, consistently, in my entire life. It feels empowering to know that what I’m putting into my body is blessing me and fueling me, rather than making me feel good in the moment but ultimately leaving me feeling sluggish.

Are you ready to give food prepping a go? What else can I share about our experience that could help you on your journey?

Resources

Containers: Bento Boxes| Assorted Sizes | 5 Pack of 30 Oz Containers

Meals: Cookie & Kate Recipes for Enchiladas & Lentil Soup | Cookie & Kate Cookbook | Veganomicon Cookbook | Martha Stewart’s Bean Salad