We sat around the table enjoying an incredible prepared vegetarian meal. Fourteen of us were staying in a beautiful home overlooking Secrets Beach, on the island of Kauai. We had come for a week of yoga and fun with Steve Ross and Tom Morley. It was the yoga retreat I had been waiting for. My two favorite instructors in my most favorite place.
That first night, as we savored the delicious (and nutritious) meal, we couldn’t help but notice that Steve Ross was eating his own concoction, that appeared to be just mixed lettuce and avocado. Apparently he mostly just consumes smoothies and fruit, so this was a feast for him. As we dug into the amazing zucchini lasagna (zucchini noodles, roasted tomato sauce and some ricotta cheese), one of the guests said to Steve, “You don’t know what you’re missing.”
His reply, “I’m not missing it,” got my attention.
For most of my life, I had a piece of toast with breakfast. Sometimes with an egg on it, sometimes with almond butter, sometimes just dry cinnamon raisin toast, to go with my smoothie.
Of course, it was always the “good” bread like Ezekiel sprouted grain or spelt bread.
None of that long-shelf-life, preservative laden stuff for me! No way! I was always careful to choose whole grains, or better yet, sprouted grains.
I also “believed” in breakfast within an hour of waking.
In fact, I was absolutely sure this was the best way to lose weight and be healthy.
Hundreds of my clients got in amazing shape following my principles, and this was always the first rule.
I knew this was the best way.
I no longer have toast for breakfast.
In fact, I don’t really have breakfast.
I just stopped. I really missed it for about a week.
Then one day, I didn’t.
I am no longer a person who eats toast every day. I no longer eat as soon as I get up.
I cannot begin to explain what a game changer this has been for me. I’m not starving all day anymore.
I’m not “afraid” of getting hungry. I don’t get light headed and I don’t feel like I will pass out or… die.
In fact, I feel better! This has been incredibly liberating for me.
Eliminating toast, as well as oatmeal, brown rice and quinoa (cereal was eliminated a couple of years ago) radically changed my breakfast until eventually I eliminated breakfast all together.
At least at the traditional time.
I still call my first meal “breakfast” because I still do typically choose some sort of “breakfast” type food, but I usually have it around 10:30 or 11am…
Sometimes I have eggs but most often I have my Hottie Shake.
I used to think I couldn’t live without my breakfast. And especially… MY TOAST!
It took about a week to be free. I now can honestly say, “I’m not missing it.”
From a Steve Ross/Tom Morley Yoga Retreat on Kauai. At breakfast, when questioned and told he was missing out on some yummy food, Steve said “I’m not missing it.” It has stuck with me ever since.
Love, hate or indifference… no matter your feelings about Valentine’s Day – it is upon us.
It’s not my favorite of Holidays, but it does happen to be the perfect arbitrary date to use as a deadline for a “resolution reset” … just in case any of our goals from New Years have fallen to the wayside.
I say all of us unite and use it as a deadline to look and feel as fabulous as possible.
Whether or not we have a significant other to share it with.
If you do, great – wouldn’t it be nice to look like a hottie for him/her? There’s your motivation.
If not, awesome – you’re on my team.
Let’s pretend we have a date and we want to look and feel our hottest ever that day!
And we should start today.
Here are 7 things that if we all agree to do together, come Valentines Day – our collective hotness will surely be felt across the globe.
There are many reasons to workout: better health, more energy, blah, blah, blah. The most compelling reason:
To look like a hottie…
It’s mid-winter (in the US) and just far enough from January 1 for the New Years Resolutions to be falling to the wayside.
Do you want to hit the reset button? Do you want to have your sparkle back?
What if I told you, you can have it back in 10 days?
What if you could coax your inner hottie out?
Yes. We all have one.
Halle Berry is quoted as saying “Sexiness is a state of mind…,” and while I believe this to be true, I also think it’s difficult to achieve this “state of mind” while feeling like a puff-ball and doing a Charlie Brown impression.
And I certainly can speak from [recent] experience.
My job is getting actors in shape fast. When I do it right, they usually stay there – or at least close. My reputation is built on my ability to just get the job done, no matter, no matter how much time is left.
So I know what I’m doing. I know what to eat. I know how to exercise. In fact, I was what most people would consider to be in really good shape.
Part of me feels like I have to stay that way because my clients look to me for inspiration…
Yet, near the end of last summer, I lost my sparkle.
A back injury had sidelined my workouts and forced me into physical therapy – on top of that, taking on a few too many projects, left little time for play and heaps of stress.
I had to change.
And change I did.
Not only did I get my sparkle back, but I got my bodyweight down to the lowest than since I was 25 years old! While it wasn’t a crazy amount of scale weight, it’s significant because this 8 pounds was the most stubborn of the stubborn. And truthfully I didn’t realize I had 8 pounds to lose.
3 things pushed me in the right direction.
1. I read Fight Club.
Actually, first I read a post about Tyler Durden on The Minimalists.
Reading the book helped me understand that it wasn’t about fighting at all. (something about seeing it in print.)
It wasn’t violent… it was about a man ‘waking up’ and realizing he’s not really living his life. The Minimalists said it’s a “narrative about life and about getting rid of the corporate and cultural influences.”
It’s a beautiful book with a powerful message.
There was one quote in particular that really moved me and I hope it has the same effect on you.
“It’s your life and it’s ending one minute at a time.”
Think about that. What are you doing? What are you NOT you doing? What changes could you make right now that would make your life better? What conversation could you have? What habit could you stop? or start?
I had been leaning into the paleo style of eating for a while, but I decided to be much more strict with the “no bread, no grains” rule.
“Everything in moderation” is not an option for me.
I was also doing a lot of studying about intermittent fasting but I didn’t really embrace it until I re-read Jason Ferruggia’s “Renegade Diet.”
He made it clear and more exciting. It lit a spark.. the way that he explained the science just made sense to me.
He explains that while we are fasted – especially when we’re ‘deep’ into the fast – as part of our bodies own survival mechanism – our nervous system operates in what’s known as ‘sympathetic mode’ – which is associated with the ‘flight or flight’ response, alertness, focus, clear thinking.
And it’s when we eat our first meal, that our body switches to parasympathetic mode, where we relax and let our guard down. This often shows itself as sudden yawning, feeling foggy or tired, or just less-focused and distracted.
Some foods will illicit a bigger response than others – but I think you’ll find, as many people do, the fasting period becomes your most productive of the day – and you may even be looking for ways to extend it! :-O
So Jason’s book is just amazing – and then a few of my friends were following the plan with pretty amazing results.
So I decided to try it… with a few little tweaks.
Nothing mindblowing here, I know. I stopped eating a traditional breakfast… extending the time I was “fasted” by a few extra hours. I usually have my last meal at around 7:30pm. So by not eating until 10:30a, I’m at about 15 hours of fasting.
This is essentially what my friend Jason Ferruggia teaches in his book about Intermittent Fasting, The Renegade Diet. 16 hour fast, 8 hours of eating.
Until I read his book, I thought this sounded crazy – I thought I had to eat breakfast or I would DIE! (surprisingly though, since putting a lot of my clients on the new diet, many are relieved to not have to be eating breakfast.)
The great thing about this style of eating is that it works incredibly well for active, busy individuals. Who has the time or desire to eat 5-6 meals per day?
Therefore the diet provides you with an incredible sense of freedom and adds productivity to your day. Without all the time spent preparing and eating food you will have ample amounts of time to do more productive things.
You will also have infinitely more energy during the day because of the fact the diet turns on your sympathetic nervous system, aka “fight or flight mode.” Most people are used to operating in the parasympathetic nervous system and that is why they have such low energy levels throughout the day.
Sounds great to me!
3. I put the medicine in the chocolate.
My dogs Cody and Lexi (best doggies ever!) won’t take any pills. They will literally eat an entire bowl of food around one, and leave it there for me. Like “I don’t think so, mom! Nice try!” But thank goodness for Pill Pockets. This cute little product.
Or if I don’t have Pill Pockets, I wrap them in cheese.
What’s up now Cody and Lexi!?
This made me think… how could I use the same idea with my workouts. How could I “sneak the medicine in the chocolate?”
There are certain exercises that I put in the “medicine” category – which would be things that make you feel better, move better, hurt less, etc. They’re not always the most fun things, but they’re criticial to stay healthy & hot. Many of them are also GREAT for posture, which really is one of the “look better instantly” secrets. (and something we talk about with Dr. Craig Liebenson in the Hottie Body Reboot).
And then the chocolate exercises would be your “fun stuff,” if you can call it that. Your Valslide Reverse Lunges, squats, chest press, rows…
This would be things like Valband Side-steps (better booty function), Y’s & T’s (better posture), and different stretches with the Super Valband (my new favorite tool)
The trick then is mixing this stuff up in a way where the workout is still super fun, amazingly effective and allows you to get in, get it done and get on with your day.
Hot in a Hurry is built on the concept of putting the medicine in the chocolate. I sneak in what’s good for you while still giving you what you love.
You will get fun new workouts but it’s so much more than just another fitness program.
It’s a “get your hottie-mojo” back program. I will teach you eat and exercise in a way that not only have you lose up to 10 pounds in 10 days, but it will seem so easy, so satisfying that you will want to make it the way you always do it.
By the time you complete the program, you will have your sparkle back! You will feel like a brand new YOU!
But wait, there’s more! We talk big sexy hair. Easy hottie make up tips. Confidence. Style. And so much more!
An individual workout session with me and my celebrity client, Rachel Nichols; my soon to be released Hot in a Hurry Body Transformation Program and a Total ValGym with my new Pink Valslides!
You may have seen Rachel Nichol in the action film G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra, and the sword and sorcery film Conan the Barbarian. She currently plays the lead role of Kiera Cameron in the science fiction television series Continuum, which will return for a second season in 2013.
Rachel is an amazing actress, and SO much fun to be around. I promise, this will be a once in a lifetime experience!
Now for the winners…
The 2nd prize winners are:
I believe that my body is happiest when I move and sweat every day and when I feed it real, nourishing food. I believe in bear hugs. I believe in kindness: loving kindness, random acts and kindness in our approach to ourselves. I believe in friends and family…and that friends can be family. I believe that a cute outfit makes me run faster! I believe in the restorative powers of a hot cup of tea. I believe that I am strong and resilient; although I may need reminding at times. I believe in gratitude-being grateful for what we have and saying “thank you” often. I believe that music touches the heart and soul and that books can free our minds. I believe that chocolate is good for me. And is the soulmate of peanut butter. I believe in smiling. A lot. And that a belly laugh is the best medicine. I believe in red shoes on Friday. Just because!
I believe that working out should make you feel like a kid again! That it should feel like something you want to do, not something you have to do. And I believe that if you find fun ways to stay healthy you will always connect to your inner child!
THE GRAND PRIZE WINNER IS…
I believe in tolerance and understanding.I believe in happiness. I believe in respect. I believe in treating others like you want to be treated. I believe in manners. I believe in being a positive role model for my children. I believe in love. I believe that hard work equals results. I believe that you have to believe in yourself to become a better person. That is why I believe in ME!
FRANCINE, GET READY FOR AN AMAZING WORKOUT!
Congratulations to all the contest winners and a big thank you to everyone who participated!
Love and Lunges,
“The will to win, the desire to succeed, the urge to reach your full potential… these are the keys that will unlock the door to personal excellence.” – Confucius