The Best Quotes About Life, Happiness, and Forgiveness

The end of the year always causes me to start reflecting. It is easy in those moments to start to think about the past. I don’t know about you, but I can sometimes obsess a little about wishing the past could be different. This is an exercise in futility, because of course there is nothing we can do except to move forward and let go of things that no longer serve us.

I hope these quotes about life, love, gratitude and forgiveness inspire you to focus on and enjoy the present. 

2016 has been a particularly difficult year for so many people that I talk to, so give yourself the kindness that you need to see it through to the end. If you don’t feel like doing something, don’t do it! Remember to take care of yourself. If you don’t, you won’t be able to continue caring for the others who need you.

Give-up-on-a-better-past | The Wellness Scientist

 

 

 

 

Motivation Monday: Take a Small Step in the Right Direction

Sometimes The Smallest Step | thewellnessscientist.com

Some Monday’s, you just need a little extra motivation. I’m finding that true today. How about you?

I love this quote for it’s ability to give just a gentle nudge in the right direction challenging you to tiptoe towards what you want in life.

So I’ll come right out with it. I’m a HUGE procrastinator. I have a couple of article deadlines this week that I need to work on today, and instead of working on those I decided to unload and reload the dishwasher, wash my hair, investigate something on the DMV’s website … you get my point. All sorts of things other than dealing with my deadline, which will of course lead me to feel more stress as Friday nears. 

This week, it is my goal to start taking small steps towards putting more structure around my time. It’s just too easy when you work from home to let distractions become so very distracting!

My “small step” of the day was to schedule time to write, as if it were a meeting that I needed to attend. That way, I’ll take that hour block of time to focus on my article and write. I’ll let you know how it goes!

SO TELL ME …

What small step will you take today to get you closer to your goal? 

Instagram Challenge: Cultivate an Attitude of Gratitude

I can’t believe it’s almost the end of October! This is my favorite month of the year. I love it for many reasons … those first few crisp days when you realize need a sweater or a blanket, noticing the leaves changing colors, but mostly because it’s my BIRTHDAY MONTH!!!

Starting today and continuing through Thanksgiving, I’m setting a goal for myself each day to find one thing I’m thankful for. Scientists who study happiness have found that people who keep gratitude journals (daily or even several times per week) consider themselves happier than those who did not.

Think about it … Don’t you always feel good when you focus on something positive? What is more positive than recognizing something that you consider a blessing?

Attitude of Gratitude Instagram Challenge | thewellnessscientist.com

I’ll be posting my daily “Thank You’s” on my Instagram page & using the hashtag #attitudeofgratitude.

Join me and discover if this boosts your happiness quotient for the next month!!

 

 

Motivation Monday: To New Beginnings!

Life Starts All Over Again | thewellnessscientist.com

 

 

Happy Monday, peeps! The fall is my favorite time of the year, and while I am sad to see the summer go I am embracing this new season and the new beginnings that fall will bring.

Fitzgerald was always one of my favorite authors, and this quote from The Great Gatsby: “Life Starts All Over Again When It Gets Crisp in the Fall” has a whole new meaning for me this year. I am truly motivated to be the happiest that I have ever been!

I am grateful for all of the good things and amazing people in my life, and I know and appreciate that any negativity I am experiencing is going to make me stronger.

Question: Do you love the Fall weather? Are you experiencing any EXCITING new beginnings? Please share!!

Five Things Friday: Fitness, Funnies, and Random Ramblings

Wow, Friday came along FAST this week! I’m linking up again this week with the DC Trifecta (Eat Pray Run DCMar on the Run, and You Signed up for What?!!) and their Friday Five Linkup! It looks like EVERYONE was busy this week!

Today is “Free Friday” with the Friday Five, so I’m sharing a little fitness update & randomness with you.

One:

First, I’m happy to say that since I listed a summer goal of kicking up my fitness a notch that I actually did some kind of exercise EVERY DAY this week! The weather has been SO nice this week for running/hiking/walking. I even logged a 2nd Pilates session this week. And, I’ll be taking my VERY FIRST class at Soulcycle in Palo Alto on Sunday! When I put my goals on paper, I really take them seriously! 🙂

Two:

Yesterday was a REALLY good day! I don’t know if it is because the past couple of weeks haven’t been that great, but all sorts of good things happened yesterday and I am GRATEFUL!

In addition to getting several new writing assignments (yay!!) I found out that I was chosen to be a new Sparkly Soul Ambassador! I’m so excited to be representing this awesome brand. Every girl deserves a little bling, right?

Today I Am Grateful | thewellnessscientist.com

 

Three:

Ok, were you one of the 10,000,000 people who saw the “Dear Kitten” video on YouTube this week? If you haven’t seen it, I am SO JEALOUS! You get to see it for the first time now! If you have cats, have ever had cats, or just like cats, you will CRACK up when you watch this video. Seriously, watch it now. If you are like me, you will watch it at least 20 more times. And still laugh. Every time. Seriously.

 

Four:

June is the month for peonies, and I LOVE PEONIES!!! If you follow me on Instagram, you will have seen the beaucoup photos that I have posted of my peonies. I love the way they look, the way they smell! I can’t get enough!

Peonies | thewellnessscientist.com

Five:

Happy Father’s Day weekend to everyone, especially to my Daddy! Wish I could be there to spend it with you, but I will see you in August — Love you!!

Happy Friday, y’all!

Share your Friday Randomness below!!

 

 

Friday Five: This Summer I Will …

Happy Friday, peeps! I can’t believe it is June already, and summer is just around the corner! I’m linking up again with the DC Trifecta (Eat Pray Run DC, Mar on the Run, and You Signed up for What?!!) and their Friday Five Linkup!   

Today’s theme is: 5 Things I Will Do This Summer

Here’ s my list!

1.  Visit my family in Louisiana.  I decided to throw my dad a big party for his birthday in August and invited all of my aunts, uncles, and cousins. My dad will be thrilled! He loves a big family get-together, and I can’t remember the last time we all got together. It will be just like Christmas Eve when I was a kid, and we would all pile in to my MawMaw’s house. I’ve got a LOT of planning to do — Wish me luck!

2.  Head back across the Pond.  Since the hubs works for a French company based in Paris, he travels abroad quite a bit. I was lucky enough to join for a couple of weeks in July last year, and I hope to do so again this year. It would be nice to squeeze in a trip before the end of June, when the big shopping SOLDES (sales) are in full effect! Last summer it was much warmer than usual when I visited.

I took this photo from the roof of my husband’s office building in the 9th arrondissement on Bastille Day. I was shocked that the fireworks show didn’t start until around 11pm on a weekday so that it was completely dark.

Bastille Day in Paris | thewellnessscientist.com

I hope it is at least cool enough this summer so that I can stop in and have a cup of hot chocolate at Angelina on the Rue de Rivoli. The best hot chocolate I’ve EVER tasted! And it comes with a lovely little dish of the most yummy whipped cream! I sat down in the team room last year, but it was SO hot inside (most places in Paris don’t have A/C) the idea of drinking a hot beverage was out of the question. Champagne to the rescue! 🙂

Sipping Champagne in Epernay | thewellnessscientist.com

3.  Blogfest!! 

BlogFest with Sweat Pink | thewellnessscientist.com

Heading down to Anaheim to meet up with my #SweatPink Ambassador sisters for IDEA World Fitness Blogfest! I am super excited to attend the first ever Blogfest with Sweat Pink. Already got my room reserved! Hoping to connect with many more SPAs virtually before the show in August when we meet in person. Are you going??

4.  Score new magazine assignments.  Most of you know that I’m a Freelance Writer, and I write for cool magazines & publications like Z-LIFE (Zumba’s magazine), MAX Sports & Fitness, YouBeauty.com, and others. I’ve been a little lazy with my pitching lately, so I’m going to kick it up a notch & become an idea-generating machine! 

5.  Launch Awesome Beauty Product Giveaways on My Blog.  I currently write about health, nutrition, and beauty. My love of beauty products is intense. I’ve got SO MANY samples to try and review in my beauty closet (yes, I’ve got an entire closet people … it is a sickness!!) Planning to spread the love, though. Sign up to the right of this post for Giveaways, and you’ll be added to the raffle for some awesome beauty product giveaways including luxury brands like Chanel, La Prairie, and others!!! 

 

What are your plans this summer? Got trips planned? Any time for R&R?

Fitness Friday: Are You a First Generation Fitness Enthusiast?

Happy Friday everyone! I wanted to try something a little different for today’s #FitnessFriday post.

Until recently, I was one of the only people in my extended family that was really in to health & fitness. A little while back, my cousin Jill started kicking butt & taking names by ramping up her fitness & dropping a significant amount of weight (good job, girl!!) My “cousin-in-law” Beth also joined the party and despite having four young kids and a full-time job, she is up at 4:30 a.m. to hit the gym before the kids are up getting ready for school.

Then LOTS of other cousins and my sister started the 21-day Advocare challenge. My sister lost a whopping 40 pounds in 40 days!!! My cousins have all posted great results of their own on Facebook & continue to drop pounds each week.

We are all what I call First Generation Fitness Enthusiasts. By that, I mean we didn’t grow up with moms and dads who did Jane Fonda or mall-walking (at least as far as I know!!!)

At some point, we each came to the conclusion that we wanted it enough to BRING IT, despite the time, energy, effort it took or the fear of making a change.

Because change can be scary, right? Change brings up feelings from the past, maybe when we tried something that didn’t go so well. The image below says it all:  If You Change Nothing, Nothing Will Change!

nothing-will-change

Question: Are You a First Generation Fitness Enthusiast? What prompted you to embrace change and opt for a healthier lifestyle? Also, what motivates you to KEEP GOING when something comes up?

If you have a blog or Facebook page where you talk about your own fitness challenge & journey, I invite you to share your link below! It helps us all stay motivated when we realize how much we have in common with one another!

Have a great weekend!!

Fitness Friday: Wanna Run? What’s Stopping You?

 

Hi there! I’ve been delinquent on my Fitness Friday posts for a few weeks now.  Just too much activity, not that I’m complaining 🙂

I’m not posting a workout today, just some honest talk about running. I’ve had several people say things like “Oh, you’re a runner? I wish I could run.”

My question is: WHAT’S STOPPING YOU????

I’ve never considered myself an athlete, but after I started running my outlook changed. Let me tell you, if I can run, ANY ONE can do it. I ran my first half marathon this year at age 39. It was a huge goal, and I was a bit nervous about training but I did it. Not only did I finish, but I finished in the top 50% of runners. Far from winning, but my goal was to finish NOT to win.  And it felt GREAT!

It doesn’t matter if you have never run before, don’t think you are an athlete (I sure didn’t), lack coordination (hello… I am constantly bruised from running into tables & walls!). Just set a goal, make a plan, and do it!  I used the Nike Training Club Half Marathon Training Plan, with a few exceptions (I did Pilates instead of yoga, since it is already something I was practicing regularly). I can’t emphasize how important the stretching is!!  The Kara Goucher Pro-Running Stretches Workout on the Nike Training Club app is AWESOME!

If running is something you want to do, go for it. It doesn’t matter how old you are. You don’t have to join a gym or buy much of anything except for a decent pair of running shoes. It feels so free being out there, and I love the acknowledgement you get when you pass other runners — so motivating!

So if you are one of those people who says, “I want to run…” I say GO FOR IT!!  What’s stopping you? 🙂

OC-half-tee-sm

At the OC Half Marathon Finish - 2013

At the OC Half Marathon Finish – 2013

 

 Question: Do you have a running goal? 

 

The Jawbone UP Activity Tracker: A Review

 

Chances are you’ve seen or possibly own an activity tracker such as the Fitbit One, Fitbit Flex, Nike Fuel Band, or the Jawbone UP.

I did QUITE a bit of research on all of the above before deciding to purchase the Jawbone UP band. So far, I’m delighted with it!

Mint-Green-Jawbone-UP-band

For the past several years, I’ve gone on vacations that tend to involve a lot of walking. Those same trips also involved a lot of eating, but I didn’t gain weight.  I always wondered how much I was actually walking in a day — up and down to take the train, around the same block several times looking for a particular cafe, up & down in museums.

 

So when I started planning my most recent trip to Tokyo, I figured it was a great time to invest in the Jawbone UP.

 

You might have some or all of these questions …

Does it motivate you to move? For me, it did. It was a much as a challenge to reach my 10,000 steps per day as it is for me to get a new Foursquare badge (if you know me, you know how much I like competitive games).  So if achieving a score of 100% motivates you, you will be very happy!

How accurate is it? On those 2 days before I left for my trip, I was pretty sedentary, so I wasn’t surprised to reach only 25-50% of my 10,000 step per day goal.  What DID surprise me was how many steps I was able to log on the days when I spent 9+ hours on a plane. Walking around in the airport is no joke! You can log some serious mileage during check-in, while going through security, immigration, customs, etc. I had NO PROBLEM hitting 10,000 miles on travel days.

How about sleep tracking? This was a nice little bonus for me. I previously installed the Sleep Cycle app on my iPhone, but I didn’t use it for long because you have to sleep with the phone next to you in bed. I charge my phone across the room at night, so that didn’t really work for me. Plus, I wonder how accurate it is with cats jumping on/off the bed, etc.  The UP has a sleep tracking feature that drills down to show how long it takes you to fall asleep, how many times you woke up during the night, light sleep vs. deep sleep, and more! I always wondered why I felt so tired during the day. The amount of deep sleep I get isn’t so great. I’ll blame the cats again for that 🙂

The band is super comfortable, so you shouldn’t have any problem sleeping in it at night.

Is there an app for that? After you purchase the band, download the handy free Jawbone app, and you are in business! If you use other health & fitness apps such as RunKeeper, MyFitnessPal, Lose It!, and others, you can sync your data with these apps too. I read a review where several people mentioned their steps were counted twice when syncing with RunKeeper. I did not find this to be the case, so if this was once an issue it has been fixed! I don’t use any of the other fitness apps that sync up, so I can’t comment on the functionality. If you use them, I’d love it if you would share your experience in the comments below so others can benefit!

The complete list of apps you can connect with your UP band as of September 25, 2013 is:

  • MyFitnessPal
  • IFTTT
  • RunKeeper
  • MapMyFitness
  • GymPack
  • Wello
  • Tictrac
  • Sleepio
  • Withings
  • Lose It!
  • CarePass from Aetna
  • Notch

Jawbone-UP-app-screenshots-sm

You can also add food and drink to keep up with your daily caloric intake.

All in all, I’m super happy with my purchase for its convenience and how effective it has been at motivating me.

The UP comes in a variety of colors. I bought the mint green and love it! There is a special edition Orange UP band that is also a very cool color. Jawbone is donating $20 to the Alliance for a Healthier Generation http://jawbone.com/alliance for every Orange UP band sold.

Question:  Do you have an activity tracker? If so, which do you like best & why?

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Other posts you might like:

Pin It Party: Best Workouts, Recipes, and Mojo Boosters

Eat Chocolate, Help Save the World!

The Best 10 Workouts You Can Do At Home

 

 

Pin It Party: Best Workouts, Recipes, and Mojo Boosters

Hi friends!

Are you following me on Pinterest? If not, and you want some great healthy living ideas including workouts, recipes, motivational pics and more, CLICK HERE.

Lindsay from the Lean Green Bean is hosting another Pin It Party.  Myself and other bloggers are sharing some of our favorite and MOST PINNABLE posts.

Here are some of my favorites.  These are chock full of good info, so I hope you will pin these to your boards!

Best Recipes on Pinterest – Our 10 Most Pinned Recipes

This Spicy Veggie Frittata is one of my most popular pins on Pinterest.  Find this recipe as well as nine other yummy recipes here.

Meatless Monday Spicy Veggie Frittata | The Wellness Scientist

 

10 Quotes When You Need a Boost of Motivation

No matter your goal, we could all use a motivational boost now and again. This is one of my favorite motivational quotes from my Quotes I Love board on Pinterest from Ralph Waldo Emerson.  Find nine other awesome motivational quotes here.

ralph waldo emerson

 

The BEST 10 Workouts You Can Do at Home

Sometimes leaving the house to get your workout on is just not possible, but you don’t have to give up! Try an at-home workout like this one to banish back fat ! To sculpt other body parts and for a couple of total-body workouts, find the other nine home-based workouts here.

the-sexy-back-workout

 

A Chocolate Bar that Saves a Life!

I love chocolate, and I love animals. Show me a chocolate bar that helps save an animals life, and I’ll buy it. 100% of the profits from Rescue Chocolate go to Animal Rescue groups. Look how cute that pup is! That just makes me happy. 🙂

Photo courtesy of rescuechocolate.com

Photo courtesy of rescuechocolate.com

 

Savory Quinoa Cakes

Don’t you just love when you use up leftovers in interesting ways? I love making quinoa in the rice cooker to serve with fish and veggies. Pretty often, I make a little more than I need and I do not like wasting food! I was in the mood for a savory little snack and came up with this recipe for Savory Quinoa Cakes that used up my leftover quinoa as well as some extra carrots. They were so good. I think it’s time to make these again!

Savory Quinoa Cakes

 

Happy pinning! Hey, leave me a comment & let me know which one of these was your favorite.

Thanks and have a great day,

Karen

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Other posts you might like: 

The 10 Best Quotes to Rev Your Motivation | The Wellness Scientist

The 10 Best Quotes to Rev Your Motivation | The Wellness Scientist

Sweet Corn and Mango Salsa | The Wellness Scientist

Sweet Corn and Mango Salsa | The Wellness Scientist