Is Bali Overrated?

Bali is one of the most magical places I have ever been. Overrated?? Absolutely NOT. I would visit there 100 times. I hope to live there long term at some point in my wild ride of a life. I’ve been promising this Bali blog since March and I currently have about four friends waiting from advice from me. So- I think it’s time. Here is my ultimate advice on Bali- what do, where to stay, what to eat, etc.

I’ve been twice. The first time with three American single girlfriends and myself (at the time also single)  and the second time with my partner. Needless to say the trips were very different but the magic about Bali was the same. You want to talk about vibes- Bali has the best vibes of any place I have ever experienced. It feels like the energy levels are sky high and you’re floating in a dream. I’ll write this with the thought that you haven’t already visited South East Asia so some things might be what you already know.

Airport: Stay somewhere where the airport shuttle is included. The nicer hotels are cheap enough that you can stay there for the first few nights (or the whole time depending on your budget) and save yourself the hassle of getting ripped off by the taxi drivers. They will be waiting for you at the airport with a sign and it just eliminates initial culture shock.

Taxis: Speaking of taxis, this is one of the worst parts about Bali. The incessant hounding for people to give you a taxi or motorbike ride or tour. This is an amazing way to see a lot in one day- we did it. But you have to make sure it’s someone you trust. Shop around and BARTER. Do not just pay the first amount they say- even if it seems cheap when you convert it. Your safest bet is using Blue Bird taxis and making sure they have the meter on. Some taxis pretend to be Blue Bird and even have a fake similar logo but you can spot the real from the fake. By far the cheapest  route is to rent a motorbike- but just make sure you take photos of it before so they don’t try to charge you for damages and that you are confident driving in the crazy Bali traffic.

Places to go:

Canggu– This is an up and coming area! I think in a few years it will be much more crowded- so get there now. It’s really peaceful and relaxed and there is a beach close by(which is good for surfing I don’t surf but my boyfriend enjoyed it.) The variety of restaurants is amazing and lots of fun nightlife. The town is mixed right in with rice fields and you don’t feel like you’re overrun by tourists but there are still people about. I would recommend 4 nights in Canggu or longer if you aim is to chill out and have a more relaxed Bali vacation.

Accommodation: We stayed at The Apartments at Canggu- highly recommend. We had our own private villa and pool. Very clean and helpful staff. Great location.

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Food & Nightlife: Nalu Bowls, Crate Cafe (MUST GO) , Finn’s Beach Club

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Should you book the flight?

I can’t let my streak be blown completely by my travels. I’ve spent two glorious weeks in Bali and the best way to describe my feelings are recharged.  I have tons of tips, photos, stories, and videos to come in the near future on my blog but tonight I am singing a different tune. Honestly, I’m not sure how this song will play out. My words are such a safe and comfortable place for me. It’s as if I could be anywhere in the world and once I start writing it’s like metaphorically being snuggled on the couch on Stinard Ave with my parent’s favorite blanket. They are safe but they are also intoxicatingly surprising. Kind of like a librarian who also has an affinity for S&M. My truest voice comes when I just let my creative one take over and run the show.

As my trip comes to an end I’m feeling reflective( me, reflective? Never) I think that travel in general is romanticized in photographs, blog posts and movies especially to a place like Bali. I know that as an American Bali sounded so exoctic and far fetched to me when I lived in the Northern Hemisphere. The flights alone were way out of my student loan debt teacher salary price range. But once I moved to the Southern Hemisphere, Bali became a totally accessible and logical vacation spot. And one that I simply had to experience.

The first time I went in 2014 was with three of my American girlfriends who I taught in Thailand with and became extremely close to. We traveled to Bali for just over two weeks, Australia for just over two weeks and ended the trip in Thailand for one final shabang on our favorite island Ko Phi Phi.  It was coincidently following my final breakup with my college ex of five and a half years. That trip was one  defined by freedom, exploration and healing. I will never forget the spark it lit in my soul. It is what ultimately led me to move to Australia and fall in love with traveling on a whole new level.

Needless to say, this trip has been a tad different coming to Bali with my boyfriend as opposed to four single American girls.  I wasn’t exactly nervous about traveling with Harry but I was very curious to see how well we would get along with the stressors of an international trip. If you don’t already know this, you may have very close relationships with people but that does not mean that they are always meant to be your traveling buddy. I think traveling exposes the most vulnerable and messy sides of a person and your travel vibes and desires just have to match in order for it to be enjoyable for everyone. No pressure, Har.

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How to Stay Fit on the Road

 

Are you passionate about traveling and living a healthy lifestyle? Maybe you aren’t necessarily passionate about healthy living but you know you need it. That’s okay too. When traveling for work, play or anything in between- it tends be to struggle to get workouts in and eat healthy. Many friends of mine complain that they often gain lots of weight when they are traveling and come home feeling bloated, run down and exhausted. Alcohol is often a part of traveling to new places and indulging in the local cuisine so how can you enjoy your trip and still stick to the healthy habits you’ve been working so hard to create?

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First and foremost, like anything else in life-it  starts with the belief that you can in fact do it. If you write off every single weekend trip, vacation and work trip before you even start of course you aren’t going to follow through once you are on the road. If it is important to you, you need to believe that it’s possible(because I promise you it is), plan ahead and accept progress not perfection.

In 12 days my boyfriend and I are packing up our lives here in Australia(maybe we should have already started) and heading to Bali for a holiday. If you follow my blog or social media you know that we aren’t leaving by choice but due to visa complications. We have nicknamed Bali our “deported holiday”  and then we intend to move to New Zealand on a working holiday visa until we can sort out a new visa to come back to Australia.

My boyfriend and I are both very passionate about health and fitness and have spent the past year really making it a lifestyle and not a vicious cycle of backwards and forwards! Both of us have been working extremely hard on our nutrition and our training and it’s a bit intimidating to head out into the unknown.

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Luckily, I know what to do. I have the belief I can do it. I have the tools to stay on track. I have a loving relationship with my body, food and adventure. I will never miss out on life for the sake of 3% body fat or a few pounds. I actually have no idea how much I weigh and I don’t care. I don’t expect perfection but I know I want to feel strong, healthy and happy when our vacation is over.

I care about treating my body well, nourishing it with quality foods and treating it sometimes too because let’s be real, I love food. Going backwards or stopping all together on my fitness journey is something I did FOR YEARS. I backpacked through South East Asia and Australia in 2014 and I definitely got off track and ended my trips feeling really shitty. The crazy part is I was still implementing some of these and didn’t even give up completely. But not this time. I’m going to share my plan and my tips so that you can take on your next adventure with the right attitude and not feel like you missed out on a thing.

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What happens when you unexpectedly have to change your entire life?

 

28 days…My boyfriend and I walked out of the hearing room and looked at each other with half relief, half sadness, and a tiny bit of sparkle in our eyes. After a series of unfortunate events and being deceived by his previous employer we knew that his 457 sponsorship visa to stay in Australia was not going to go through. We applied in April of 2016 so basically half of our relationship we have been waiting for the outcome of this visa. We prepared ourselves for them saying we had to leave but actually knowing you have 28 days to leave the entire little life you built together behind is quite terrifying once you receive the email of doom.

Instead of dwelling on the logistics, like the apartment we need to sublet, the furniture we need to sell, jobs we have to resign from, accounts we have to close, flights we need to book, (OMG, my to do list is endless right now) I’m taking a different approach this time. Usually, I would freak out- cry, let my anxiety get all out of whack and take control, be a moody brat to my boyfriend, feel sorry for myself, but this time, I decided to take control. Here is my video announcement of the news.

After announcing our news and getting an outpouring of love and support I couldn’t help but feel grateful. Many people were impressed with how positive I was being. People even expressed confusion by my positivity. How? How can you stay so positive?

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Why you should meet strangers on the Internet

The digital world can never replace in person interaction, connection and experiences. Life behind a computer screen can cause a lot of issues including comparison, unworthiness, and a feeling of “connection” but ultimately isolation. Then why would I tell you to talk to strangers on the Internet? Because in the past year and a half I have stumbled upon a few interweb connections that have changed my life and I want you to at least give it a shot. Here’s why:

You just moved to a new city- When you move to a new city, especially on your own (without a job or a place to live, wait is that just me?) your main concern should be finding a job and a place to live. If you are moving/ traveling abroad this might land you in a hostel where you could meet awesome people, (I met the love of my life) but you also meet a lot of people who are sleeping until 2 pm, partying all night, and complaining they can’t find a job. Let’s just say not the ideal crowd. If you stick to those friends you meet at the bar, you might not have the most motivated, positive, uplifting group surrounding you. CHOOSE your tribe wisely, don’t stumble into them.

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You can find out about events that peak your interest– Last year I found out about an awesome festival called Rad Livin on Instagram. It was full of inspiring stories from young creatives, live music, pizza, donuts and rad people. Their Instagram account followed me so I checked it out and it sounded like it was made for me. I couldn’t get any of my friends to join so I went alone and I made such cool friends and connections. Still time to go this year if it sounds like something you would like, just click this. I also attended many events in Sydney thanks to social media including Nike Training Tour, World Yoga Day Festival and Taste of Sydney. Cool events usually equal cool people and experiences are always worth the ticket price!

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The 2016 Collection: Travel

Travel

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“My biggest takeaway from all of my adventures living abroad in two radically different countries and returning back home to America in between, has been that the world is an absolutely captivating and magical place, if you allow it to be. Being open minded is the key to happiness, success, relationships and quite honestly, life.  I truly believe that for the most part people are their own worst enemies and let their fears hold them back from the life they deserve.”

“Traveling has forced me to be okay with not being in control(which if you know me was a VERY hard lesson for me to learn.) Traveling has forced me to see how taking risks is worth the reward. Traveling has forced me to savor the moments as they pass because you may only have a few nights with these new friends who you feel like you’ve known a lifetime. Traveling has made me realize that you don’t need a lot of money to travel you need a lot of GUTS. You need a lot of resilience. You need the willingness to get out of your OWN way and take some risks.”

“You have to be open minded in your approach to your traveling or you could circle the whole globe and not change a thing.”

“You are someone who decides that the desire to see the world is stronger than any other guiding factor.”

“Every traveler holds those stories in their memory, some to share and some to keep, but no two people will see the same world twice.”

“You can see a big and beautiful world or you can see a world full of pain and darkness. That is totally up to you.”

“Good and evil have existed since the beginning of time and will continue to exist. Traveling has reminded me to be open to the magic that this universe has to offer. Not just when you feel like it. Not just for a week or a stage in life. Be open to what the world has to offer you and see the magic in everyday life. Don’t ever stop seeing life as an adventure and that mindset will manifest your reality.  Leaving home does not mean that I never look back, I look back all the time. But my eyes have changed, my mind has expanded, my heart has opened.  I take life as it comes and I take people for what they are. I control myself (this is without a pitcher of sangria in my blood) because I know that’s the only thing I can control. I EMBRACE uncertainty because instead of holding myself back or being afraid of it, I am learning to celebrate the fact that I have no clue what’s next. None of us do. The more authentically you open your mind and your heart to the world around you the more the world around you opens. Allow the world to be the magical and captivating place that it is. Get out of your own way. I’m not saying everyone should quit their job to travel the world but DAMN, I am glad that I did.”

“The travel bug isn’t a creature you want to take lightly.”

“Traveling pushes me to my limits and pushed me out of my comfort zone to allow me the room to blossom into who I want to be. Or at least put me on the road to who I want to be. Traveling gave me the reason to start sharing my writing and the confidence to believe I had something to say.”

“When I lived in Syracuse last year for a short time, I might have taken for granted a nice dinner with Mom, an afternoon with my niece and nephew or getting ready with one of my best friends, but now, these moments feel like memories as they are happening. I cherish them with the sense of fragility and preciousness they deserve. Because I can’t see everyone I love as often as I want, I am able to invest fully in those moments and give my full self.”

“Wherever you are, and however you celebrate, remember to make this holiday season about love, celebration and admiration for life and the many blessings you have been given. It’s not wrong to miss what you’ve left behind, but don’t let it stop you from experiencing what is right in front of you.”

 

“Home will always be home for me. But the greatest feat of all, is feeling at home within yourself. I can be alone on the other side of the world but I am confident enough in who I am and where I’m going to feel at home.”

The flow knows where to go

This week and weekend I experienced the feeling of flow so many times that I felt as if I needed to pinch myself. But when you experience flow.. you go with it. C’mon we learned that when we were like ten.  While I was teaching on Monday, a few of my students seemed to be showing tremendous progress from where they started. I felt excited for them and so proud. Hearing and watching someone transform their language, communication skills and confidence is incredibly rewarding. Not only did I feel fulfilled in my teaching job but I had an awesome week with my coaching business as well. I started a new fitness challenge and have another engaged and fun group of women who are making positive, sustainable changes to their health and nutrition. Guiding people through the process of change and believing in the power of their body and especially their mind is so satisfying. I also experimented with going live and sharing some of my thoughts to inspire those who follow along with my journey. It is incredible what a difference it can make for people to hear your voice and feel connected. I am excited to have yet another medium in which I can express myself and impact the lives of others.

Balance is a continual struggle for me and I think it is the true elusive desire of most people. This week the weather has been getting very warm in Australia, which is the complete opposite of the other side of the world. Not only does this make the balancing act of work an play more difficult but this serves as my humbling reminder that we are not all there is. There is  a whole other hemispheres, planets, galaxies and who knows what out there and we are just a mere blip in the radar. But in our day to day life we often get trapped into narrow minded thinking. We get sucked into feeling like our problems are certainly the end of the world and our successes are something that must be celebrated by everyone who knows us.

But here is the thing, although we think we matter a lot, in the scheme of things we matter very little. Some people use this as an excuse to live on a small scale. I view it as the opposite. I use this fact to propel me forward into my future with as much passion, action, adventure and chutzpah as humanly possible. In the end, the only one who knows if you lived the life you are capable of is you.

 You answer to yourself.Personally, I am a very harsh critic. I will be massively successful in all areas of my life.  I refuse not to be. Being mediocre is the most terrifying fate in my book. Sometimes I let this drive me to be a workaholic but thank god I have learned to channel both my workaholic and my free spirit simultaneously. It’s not easy to do this. I continue to struggle with balancing work and play.

But I try to break my life into 1 hour increments. What can I do for the next hour that will be the most beneficial for me? Now, beneficial sometimes means for my business, my mental health, my relationship, my blog, my sanity, my teaching job. If I don’t have an hour-I break it down into half hour segments. It is amazing what you can do when you utilize the time in your day the way YOU want to.

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Dear Sydney…

Dear Sydney,

The past week has been overflowing with more reflection than usual for me. If I gave you an hour inside of my brain I assume you would be quite exhausted and possibly terrified. I am celebrating a year of living here in Sydney. I moved to Australia at the end of July 2015 but I went backpacking for two months up the East coast and I landed in Sydney at the end of September 2015, for what I thought was a few weeks. When I moved to Australia it was my intention to live in Melbourne. My teacher besties I met in Thailand moved there and when I visited the fall before I fell in love. I came to Australia not knowing exactly where I would end up, but I had an open mind and an open heart. After a few weeks in the hostel I was running out of money, so I knew it was time to get another job. My job search began and I made the Library of New South Wales my go-to spot. Something about being in a library makes me feel safe and at home.  It was while I was living in this cheap hostel, searching for a job, checking my bank account after every purchase, exploring the city on my own, that I began stressing about the future and if I really made the right decision. I struggled with loneliness and intense anxiety.  I wrote in my blog a year ago how I took myself out to dinner for the first time at a fancy restaurant and forced myself to enjoy my own company, without my phone or any hesitation. It felt weird and uncomfortable but overall, it was liberating.

A year ago I had no idea that at this hostel I would meet the man that I am now in love and happily living with. I had no idea that my passion for health and wellness, helping others, and sharing my journey would turn into such a huge driving force in my career and my life. For all my travelers out there, I know you can understand why traveling makes you so reflective but if you don’t travel much, I would love to explain why. When you travel or live abroad, especially for long periods of time, your life goes into a time warp and months seem like years and days seem like minutes. It feels like you just left home but it also feels as if you have existed in this universe forever. You develop a routine in your new turf because despite the need for freedom and adventure, human beings are all creatures of habits. When you move away from everything you’ve ever known, you are left with yourself. You are left to define yourself, in whatever manner you desire. The people you meet may learn about your past from stories, photographs and Facebook stalking, but a traveler meets everyone at face value, as the person they are today. It’s a beautiful way to approach life and a particularly comforting way to approach people.

The whole concept of the travel bug sounded silly to me at first. It sounded cliche and overused and quite frankly, trite. But a harsh reality you face in this world, is that cliches only construct meaning in your life when they are relevant to you. The travel bug isn’t a creature you want to take lightly. Now that I have lived abroad for 2 out of the last 3 years of my 20’s, I am heavily addicted. I am in love with the way it feels to explore new cities and look at every minute moment as something special and worth remembering. I am in love with the feeling of coming and going because it constantly reminds you how good you have it. When I travel home, I see the same city I grew up in with fresh eyes. All my favorites of home become that much more divine and sacred. Even though I have lived in Sydney for a year now, it still feels fresh and exciting to me. When I got my teaching job, experienced a few weeks of summer in Sydney and met my handsome Englishman, I felt an overwhelming feeling of contentment. I felt satisfied, grounded and “home” in a way that is difficult to verbalize. I asked myself out-loud, and many of my friends, “Why would you ever choose to leave this?”

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Go deeper

When I started this blog I had no idea what it would turn into or if I would even stick to it. I started it a month before I moved to Thailand as a way to keep up with friends and family and share my journey on the other side of the world. Today, my blog is a safe haven for me a place I go to unwind, reflect and make sense of the rapid paced world we live in. Since then I have gone from teaching in Thailand, backpacking South East Asia, teaching in New York and starting my own coaching business to teaching in Australia and growing and developing my coaching business and my writing career. Originally my blog served only as a spot of reflection but the further I advance and evolve as a coach the more I want to integrate my blog to be not only stories from my life but also a source of motivation for making a change in your own life and resources for living the life of your dreams. Before I dive into integrating coaching into my blog I want to explain my journey as a coach to my readers and followers who might see snippets on social media but don’t really understand what I am doing or why I am doing it.

I wholeheartedly understand that the fitness lifestyle whether it is Beachbody, Crossfit, yoga, spinning, BBG, Barre, etc. is taking over the internet and at time it seems overwhelming and maybe even “cult like.” I want to explain to you from my experience WHY I am sharing and what this community and these programs have done for my life. Like most things in life, we observe them at face value. But my words have always given me the ability and the calling to go deeper. The internal strength I have gleaned from committing myself to a healthy lifestyle is part of the reason I have been able to reconnect with my inner voice and I believe one of the tickets to making my writing what it is today. My goal is to use my passion for health and wellness and my passion for writing , connecting and expressing to better people’s understanding and ability to work on their health in all areas: mind, body and soul. Since I am a storyteller by nature, here is a glimpse of my journey into a healthy lifestyle and why it has become such a defining part of who I am.

In graduate school, a friend gave me a thumb drive with all of the Insanity workouts on it. Yes, I am a Beachbody coach who is fully admitting to obtaining my first program illegally. I was in the middle of student teaching(for non-teacher friends, that is full time unpaid teaching) and going to graduate school full time. I was waking up at 5 am every morning after drinking myself into a 4 glass wine coma almost every night. I physically could barely keep my eyes open until I chugged at least two cups of coffee. My stress levels and anxiety were at an all time high but I had tunnel vision for completing my MA in Secondary Education. I had so much built up stress that my temper was out of control and I could snap/ have a mental anxiety attack at the drop of a hat. Due to my schedule, I had basically cut out my exercise routine besides on the weekends but I usually spent those WVU weekends hungover and unable to exercise. This was the first time in my life I explicitly saw how intense the effect of exercise was on my mental health.
I was a former gym rat for most of college but I literally did not have the time to drive to the gym across town, workout for an hour and drive home. I needed something else. After trying Insanity once, I committed to the 60 day calendar and set off on a journey on my own in my kitchen every afternoon. I absolutely loved and hated Shaun T all at the same time. My roommates thought I was actually insane but I could not replace the endorphins and stress relief that program gave me. I could squeeze it in between the end of my school day and my night classes even if that meant going to class with slightly( okay, really) sweaty hair. Since I had the calendar hanging on my wall it was a mental game for me and I literally couldn’t miss a day. Everyone is different but for me, that was motivation enough to stick to it for 60 days. It was the hardest thing I had ever done physically but I was determined to make it work. My friend Amy was posting on social media about Insanity and this “coaching thing” and one post even said she quit her job to do her coaching business full time from home! I was intrigued so I messaged her and then realized that Insanity was part of one of the biggest fitness companies in America that also had so many other workout programs, a superfood shake and a whole WORLD to offer. Not to mention, this was also an opportunity to start my own coaching business helping other people commit to their health and fitness and transform their lives. Long story short, I started coaching just so I could get the new Insanity Max 30 program and Shakeology and wanted to help enough people per month to pay for my own Shakeology. I also had hopes that the second income could help with my student loan debt and measly teacher salary. I had no IDEA what I was in for.

Now, I’ve been a coach for a year and a half and my life has been greatly impacted by the community, the programs and the job itself. I have never been so motivated and dedicated to my health for so long. Sure, we can all go through stages of motivation, a vacation, wedding, reunion or special event that we “diet” for and crush it at the gym but how many of you actually sustain the type of healthy lifestyle you want year round? I didn’t before Beachbody and now I actually achieve that 80/20 lifestyle I desired and I feel happier and healthier than I ever have in my life. I don’t believe my challenges or our programs are the only way to see results or achieve a healthy lifestyle but I know how well they have worked for me. THAT IS THE WHOLE BASIS OF THIS BUSINESS. I have never “sold” anything  because I simply share my experience what I use and have used & believe in myself. I represent these programs BECAUSE I believe in them and I have seen them transform my life and the lives of thousands of coach friends, clients & strangers.

Why I am fascinated by our programs and our community is because the whole AIM of the challenge and my aim as your coach is to introduce a lifestyle that fits INTO your lifestyle. You do not have to be “into” fitness to join a challenge. You don’t have to own seven pairs of Nikes and know everything about macros and clean eating. The whole point of the challenge is to introduce a nutritional guide and simple portion controlled eating system and short but effective exercise into the lives of anyone who is not happy with their current fitness or nutrition level. Believe me, I knew how to exercise before challenge groups but nutrition, forget it. I knew what healthy food was but I had no clue how much I should be eating and of what. I was definitely under eating for a large portion of college and would turn into a junk food monster on the weekends once I had a night out at the bar. Not only does the eating guide give you an easy way to know what to eat and HOW MUCH to eat but the secret sauce of the whole operation, Shakeology, gives you all of the nutrients and vitamins you could possibly need. It isn’t a protein shake, it’s a superfood shake with over 70+ superfoods that gives you natural energy, curbs your sweet tooth and junk cravings and keeps you full. I never drank shakes before Shakeology and I was honestly very hesitant. But now I’m willing to pay 50 extra dollars a month to have it shipped to Australia because I simply can’t go without it. It takes 60 seconds in the blender and sets me up for a nutritionally sound day.

The programs and the products I believe in 100% but the key to any successful fitness lifestyle is the community. The challenges I run every month keep me motivated, accountable and genuinely excited to stay on track and do my best with my health and fitness. This does not mean you need to be or I as your coach am perfect. I have cheat meals and days. I have alcohol. I still have dessert and I admit it to my group. We admit our successes and our failures. The goal is not to all of a sudden cut everything out that you enjoy, it’s to learn how to stick to a healthy meal plan that is sustainable for much longer than 21 days or the duration of the challenge. A little change goes a long way and people rooting for you, giving you awesome recipes and commiserating when your legs are so sore you can barely sit down on the toilet really is a game changer. Not only do you get a “fitness community” you get people who are positive, motivated, encouraging and want you to succeed in whatever you set out to do. Unfortunately, sometimes that is really hard to find. I love giving the opportunity to my friends, family, and new friends I connect to.

Before I was a coach I always thought fitness fanatics were a little vain or superficial and I remember thinking to myself I didn’t care enough to spend all that time to try to “perfect” my body. The more I have learned about health and nutrition the more I know that exercise and eating right isn’t some silly fad. It’s not superficial unless YOU make it superficial. My goals are not based on what I want to look like. They are based on my strength and quite honestly my willpower, self control and mental clarity.

Before I became a coach I didn’t understand the constant selfies that gym goers posted even though I was exercising regularly myself. Now I see that most of the time the selfie is not for the person posting it. It is for all of the people they hope to inspire. Sharing my fitness journey has become such a powerful part of my journey because it allows me to be transparent and vulnerable. When I receive countless messages thanking me for the inspiration or the motivation to get off the coach or cook something healthy or start to believe in themselves, I know sharing is beyond worth it. I am proud to share because I share to bring value to others in any way that I can. So next time you see a fitness coach on Instagram or Facebook, applaud them for lifting people up instead of rolling your eyes. Read the caption. I guarantee it goes deeper than you would expect. Fitness and nutrition is the actual key to LIVING a long and fulfilling life. Your diet affects EVERY part of your life including your physical health (on the inside), sleep patterns, physical appearance, stress levels, mental health and overall quality of life. Exercising shouldn’t be about what you want to look like but instead what you want to feel like. That phrase has become cliche, I know. But seriously, post workout highs and endorphins, you simply can’t replace that.

So please, ask yourself: How long do you want to live? Do you want to run around with your grandchildren? Do you want to go on hikes when you are retired? Do you want to be able to help your children move into their new homes? Do you want to bound up the stairs without breathing heavy? Do you want to look in the mirror without looking away? Do you want to step on the scale and not give a damn what the number says? Do you want to wake up feeling good and go to bed feeling satisfied? I do. I also want to feel purposeful, centered, positive, confident in myself not just in the way I look but the person I am. Committing myself to my health and fitness has been a catalyst for change in every area of my life. I feel like I would be doing a huge disservice NOT to share everything I have learned and experienced. Once I saw how sharing my journey, not just with health and fitness but with navigating life as a 20 something in our society, impacted others and inspired others I made a vow to myself to never stop sharing. I made a vow to myself to never be afraid to “annoy” people. If I annoy you at any time, I sincerely hope that you realize that my message is straight from the heart and maybe you don’t need to hear it all of the time but someone does. Someone needed that reminder on that specific day, that they are enough, they can start fresh today, they are worthy of happiness and of self love. You are enough. You can start fresh. You are worthy.

This fall we have an awesome line up of programs and opportunities because Beachbody as a company is continually striving to end the trend of obesity in America and unfortunately the rate of obesity is INCREASING. 70% of Americans are obese. 70 percent. That is absolutely heartbreaking and terrifying to me. I am doing everything I can to spread not only the message of my company but my own PERSONAL message. Coaching has taught me how important it is to share your journey and story, not just the triumphs but also the struggles. Not only has my business given me the platform to reach out and connect and talk to people every day but it has reminded me how badly I need to share what is within. And luckily for me, expressing myself in words is a talent of mine and one that I desire to pursue for my entire lifetime. I am just a girl who is trying to remind people that being healthy is so much more than having muscles or a flat stomach. Being healthy is a commitment to yourself from the INSIDE… OUT. You need your mind, body and spirit to feel healthy and each area deserves time, attention, relevance and respect. The journey takes so much self awareness, acceptance, actualization and confidence so no wonder we have trouble doing it alone. I am here to remind you that you don’t have to.


Now that you have a deeper look at why I got involved in coaching, I want to extend to you an invitation to be a part of my community. If you stumbled upon my blog or you have been following for a while and you don’t follow me on other social media sites, you probably don’t know how much time and effort I put into helping people achieve their goals but I would be honored and excited to share that with you. If you do follow me on social media and you’ve been tempted to get involved in one of my challenges before but never bit the bullet I have exciting news that you are going to want to get involved in next month’s health bet! Beachbody is so passionate about the mission of ending the trend of obesity in America and introducing this life changing community & program to as many people as possible, they are making a bet for anyone who joins a challenge group in September! The pot is climbing to 2 million dollars and will max out at 3 million!
Here’s how you play:
1. Commit to an at home workout program and join my challenge on our challenge tracker app
2. Workout 3 times a week & track in the app
3. Drink Shakeology 5 times a week & track in the app
THAT’S IT! Whoever completes this will split the pot! I am super competitive and love things like this so I am excited to share it with you. If you have already completed a challenge with me or are one of my coaches you can still participate!! I would love to discuss this opportunity further with anyone who wants more details. You can send me an email at susannahaobell@gmail.com, contact me via Facebook (my name on FB is Susannah Aimee) or any of my social media accounts (my details are in the contact tab).
Even if you are not interested, I genuinely hope that I can inspire you to make small steps and positive changes to improve your health. Without our health we quite literally do not have our life and I don’t know about you, but I would like to stick around for as long as possible. If you have any questions about how I can help you or just about your own journey in general please do not hesitate to ask! Many coaches on my team and I do exciting fitness & recipes groups absolutely free and the more people who join the merrier! Knowledge is power and there is so much out there to help get you on the right track. Thanks for taking the time to read this and I hope this gives you some insight into my life as a coach and why I am so dedicated to spreading this community to as many people as possible. Remember, like Mahatma Gandhi said, “In a gentle way, you can shake the world.” I’m trying to shake the world to go deeper and lead lives full of positivity, self love and the reminder that we all deserve to feel beautiful from the inside out.  Don’t hesitate to reach out to me, my ear and heart is always open.

More is possible

In April, I promised to appear weekly with a “headspace” blog post which certainly has turned into an incredible outlet for getting out my weekly thoughts, experiences and reflections. If you are a writer, you understand the often grueling process that goes into our craft and I desired a space to express myself without fretting over my sentence structure or my word choice. Of course, I pay attention to these things but for my weekly writing the actual use of my blog as a “headspace” or a “brain dump” was much more important than the mechanics of the piece. After discovering that one of my favorite authors Elizabeth Gilbert has her own podcast (called Magic Lessons, PLEASE LISTEN) I am feeling more inspired than ever to continue my journey as a writer and push my creativity to higher levels. Coincidentally, I also got an offer to be a contributing writer to an up and coming website that is seeking to be one of the biggest blogging websites on the world wide web. I am so honored and excited because the offer to write for them is completely aligned with my aim for myself as a writer. They encouraged me to write about whatever inspires me the most and see this as an opportunity to connect to a whole new community of writers and readers. Coincidence? I think not. That my friends is the power of the universe.

After binge listening to Elizabeth Gilbert’s podcast (trust me a podcast binge is so much more fulfilling and stimulating than a Netflix one) I felt an intense pull at my heart strings to pursue and cherish the gift and the passion I have for my writing. The stories inside of me are not something that I feel as if I can survive without telling. That may sound extremely dramatic to those of you who do not have specific creative calling(that you are aware of) but to me it is plain and simple. Like the feeling of hunger, excitement, joy, or sleepiness. The feeling to create is plain and simple for me and it is relentless. The more I listen to it, the freer I feel. You can expect to see more from me in the coming months as I pursue my new venture as a contributing writer. I am honored and downright ecstatic based on the continual support I get from those around me. My mother, will always be my most faithful reader and artful critic. But I notice and appreciate every bit of feedback you give me. The truth is, I would and will write despite the fact that anyone reads or enjoys it. But the fact that you read and enjoy it channels my inner “flow” of spirit. The more genuine I am to my most inner thoughts and feelings the more my audience responds favorably. To me, that is simply a testament of this incredible gift. One of my favorite quotes, that I have included on the homepage of my blog, “Great writers remind us that more is possible”- Kiddler & Todd. Simply put, I can not think of a better mantra for what I am to aiming to bring to my readers. More is possible, in so many facets and nuances of life, writing, troubles, and happiness. More is infinitely available but impressively elusive. Let’s go find it together. 

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