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? 

Friday Five: Five Ways To Beat The Heat This Summer

How To Beat The Heat This Summer | thewellnessscientist.com

Happy Friday, peeps! I’m linking up again with the DC Trifecta (Eat Pray Run DCMar on the Run, and You Signed up for What?!!) and their Friday Five Linkup! This week is a fun theme — 5 Ways To Beat The Heat — and very timely! Yesterday, as I went on my walk at The Stanford Dish the sun was intense! And I didn’t leave the house until 5:45 pm!

But it was a clear day — I mean, look at this view!

Stanford Dish Trail | thewellnessscientist.com

 

So, here are a few ways to stay COOL this summer when the days heat up!

1) Exercise indoors – I know, this can be boring. And you won’t catch me running on a treadmill unless it is a last resort. I like to keep things interesting, so I included 10 pretty awesome workouts in this post — The Best 10 Workouts You Can Do At Home. Try these for awesome arms & abs, sculpted legs, and killer cardio!

2) SMOOTHIES!

Check out these 13.1 Smoothie Recipes for 13.1 Miles if you are training for a half-marathon this summer! You’ll find some tasty treats here chock full of nutrients to fuel your run. Did I mention they are also yummy? Which one is your favorite?

Smoothie Recipes to Run For | thewellnessscientist.com

Photo courtesy of WholeLiving.com

 

3) Get Outta That Kitchen!

Ok, not out entirely … but don’t turn that oven on when its scorching outside! Try a few light summer salads, like this Summer Coleslaw when temps are soaring. It’s a great chance to go meatless for a day if you haven’t tried it! Mucho benefits!

4) Take a Dip

Remember how you used to swim when you were a kid? Not just dipping your toes in or tip-toeing around so you don’t get your hair wet. Throw caution to the wind, hold your nose, and go under water! Its a lot more fun than you may remember. You’ll have FUN!!!! I have a new suit that I am dying to wear. Now I have to track down a pool!! 🙂

5) Drink Up!

Yes, I mean hydrate! It is especially important to drink more water when temps rise, especially if you are exercising. I bought one of those pitchers that has a fruit infuser in the middle a while back to add a little zest to my plain water. I used it religiously for a few weeks, then I put it away when I was tidying up the kitchen one night. Time to pull that thing out and make some cucumber lemon water!!

Make Your Own Spa Water | thewellnessscientist.com

SO TELL ME …

What are your tips for beating the heat? Any fun weekend plans to kickoff the summer?

 

 

 

Friday Five: 5 Places I’d Like To Run

Happy Friday! I have been absent for a couple of weeks, but not because I wanted to be! I was moving to a new hosting provider, and the migration was not as easy as I had hoped it would be. I’m thinking some of you fellow Bloggers can feel my pain, right?

The really bad part is that I lost ALL of my Blog subscribers! The number of subscribers I had using the plugin from Jetpack is now a big fat zero, and I don’t have all of the email addresses to get in touch & let people know 🙁  So here I go again with an attempt to grow traffic from scratch.  SIGH…

Today I am linking up with Mar on the Run, Courtney at Eat Pray Run DC, and Cynthia at You Signed Up for What?? for their DC Trifecta FRIDAY FIVE LINK UP.

The theme this week is “Five Places I’d Like To Run.” I’m excited to join this link-up for the FIRST TIME!

Without further delay, here are the Five Places I’d Like to Run!!

1) Vancouver, Canada – The Lululemon SeaWheeze Half Marathon 

Vancouver | thewellnessscientist.com

Image from SeaWheeze Half Marathon

This Half Marathon sounds AMAZING! I saw pics from runners who ran this last year, and the views were incredible. As if the scenery weren’t inspiring enough, there is pre-run yoga & an after-run festival. This run is most definitely on my bucket list. Has anyone run this half? Does anyone want to??? 🙂

2) The Napa to Sonoma Wine Country Half-Marathon

Napa to Sonoma Wine Country Half Marathon | thewellnessscientist.com

Image from http://destinationraces.com/

13.1 miles of running through vineyards and then wine at the end? I’m SOLD! But so are a lot of other folks … this race sells out FAST! Haven’t been quick enough to get a spot  yet, but I’m going to keep trying.

3.  Patagonia, Argentina

Patagonia | thewellnessscientist.com

I’m a sucker for gorgeous views, lemme tell you. Nothing puts a smile on my face like a run while taking in something amazing! Patagonia, Argentina is #7 on the list of 100 Places to See Before You Die. It’s on my list too!  Just … WOW!

4. Springtime in Tokyo, when the Cherry Blossoms are in Bloom

Cherry Blossoms | thewellnessscientist.com

Photo courtesy of El Scrapeo via Flickr
Aoyama Cemetary, Tokyo

My husband took this photo, and though I have visited Tokyo a few times I have not had the pleasure of being there during that precious week when the Cherry Blossoms or sakura are at their finest. Peak season is mid-March, though you can find a more precise schedule from year-to-year posted by the Japan Weather Association! These are my FAVORITE flowers — such a delicate pink. I can’t imagine a better backdrop for a run!

AND LAST BUT NOT LEAST

5) Zakynthos Island, Greece

Zakynthos Island | thewellnessscientist.com

And once again, that gorgeous turquoise water has caught my eye!! Though the rugged terrain may make for a tough run, what a prize at the end when you get to relax and enjoy the view from this beautiful beach! I think I’ll just close my eyes and pretend I’m there for a few minutes now 😉

SO TELL ME …

Have you ever run in one of the places? Make me jealous & tell me ALL about it in the comments, please!!

What are some of the places you dream of running? And if you aren’t in to running, how about beautiful places on your Bucket List to see someday?

Have a great weekend, everyone!

DC_linkup

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? 

 

Fitness Friday: Amazing Arm Definer Workout

Happy Friday! I’ve been posting on Mondays and Thursdays for quite some time, but for the next several weeks I am promoting #FitnessFriday and will be sharing a fitness-related post with you on Fridays. I hope this gets your weekend off to a GREAT start &  motivates you to include some movement during the weekend. Don’t forget to schedule some time for FUN too!  Remember, it’s all about balance 🙂

This is a 15-minute Arm Definer Workout designed by the Nike Fitness Club trainers with only five moves that you will repeat three times. If you have an iPhone, you can download the Nike Fitness Club app FREE of charge. This is one of the many at-home workouts & stretch routines available to you.

 

Arm Definer Workout

 

You do not need equipment to do this workout, however, if you choose to use weights you will need a pair of dumbbells and a medicine ball.

The first move in the Arm Definer Workout is Single Leg Arm Curls. In this exercise, weights are optional. If you plan to use weights, grab a pair of 3 or 5-lb dumbbells and let’s get started!
1)  Stand with your arms by your sides, palms facing towards you. Your knees should have a very slight bend.
2)  Lift one leg, bent at the knee and balance on the standing leg.
3)  Hinge from the elbows and bring dumbbells up to your shoulders.
4)  Lower and repeat, switching legs after 30 seconds.
Check out this YouTube clip to see this move performed.

The second move is the Alternating Medicine Ball Pushup.
1)  Start in push-up position with the medicine ball under one hand.
2)  Lower down as far as you can go, then push back up into starting position.
3)  Roll the ball to the other hand, and repeat push up on the opposite side.
4)  Continue to do this move, switching from one side to another for one minute. To see this move performed, click here.

The third move is the Modified Tricep Pushups.
1)  Kneel with your hands out in front of you. Bring hips forward and shift your weight so it is positioned over your shoulders.
2)  Lower your upper body towards the floor, keeping your abs pulled in tight & your butt down.
3)  Push up and repeat for one minute.
To watch a clip of the Modified Tricep Pushup, click here.

The fourth move is the Sumo Squat with Press.
1)  Grab your dumbbells again if using weights.
2)  Stand with your feet wide, toes turned out, elbows bent with hands up by your shoulders, palms facing one another.
3)  Squat down bringing hips towards the floor, with knees over toes.
4)  Squeeze your butt & legs as you come back up, pressing your hands up over your head (palms still facing each other). Repeat for thirty seconds.
To watch a clip of the Sumo Squat with Press, click here.

The fifth & final move is the Plank Row.
1)  With dumbbells in hand, bring yourself into the plant position. Start with your weight over your shoulders and your feet in a wide base.
2)  Perform a row, bringing your elbow up past your back so there is a slight twist in the torso. Keep elbows close to your sides and abs in tight!
3)  Repeat on the other arm.  Keep switching sides and repeat for one minute. To watch a clip of the Plank Row, click here.

Take a well-deserved 30 second recovery, breathing in and out. Repeat each move 2 more times (including the 30 second recovery), for a total of three sets.

 

Arm Workout

 

Question: Do you work out your arms at least a couple of times a week? What is your favorite arm move?

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

The Best 10 Workouts You Can Do At Home

Whether you have a gym membership or not, sometimes you just want to get a great workout without having to go somewhere to do it. I hear ya! And with traffic and road construction the way it is now, I swear leaving the house is terribly overrated!

Whether you are looking for ways to tone your arms, lift your butt, or just get some cardio in …

Here are 10 of the BEST Workouts you can do from home (or anywhere!)

1. Your BEST Butt.  This is a great butt workout courtesy of Lita, a dancer who blogs on Tumblr as Back on Pointe. You can do this entire workout from home without a single piece of equipment. Have a pair of dumbells at home? Great! Use them if you want to add intensity.

from #backonpointe

from #backonpointe

If you’ve been doing this butt workout for awhile and you want to switch things up, check out the Beach Babe Booty workout here. You’ll be feeling this when you are done … no doubt!

2. Tank Top Arms. Who cares if summer is almost over? We want tank top arms year-round, and we can get them easily with this AWESOME workout from the lovely Caitlin at fitfabcities.com. Our arms thank you for this, Caitlin! For best results, you will need a pair of dumbbells.  Start off with a weight you can manage (or even two bottles of water if you are a beginner). Increase weight once it becomes too easy (e.g., you aren’t feeling the burn after completing a set)

View on Amazon: 3-lb. dumbbells, 5-lb. dumbbells

from #fitfabcities

from #fitfabcities

 

 3. The 25 for 25 Workout. Whoa! This one looks intense! You will do each one of these 25 moves in about 25 minutes. Do each exercise for 25 seconds, resting 25 seconds before starting the next move. This workout is from Katy at fitinheels.com.  You can see a demo of each move here.

from #fitinheels

from #fitinheels

 

4. Killer Inner Thigh Workout (but in a GOOD way). This is great inner thigh workout from Cassie at blogilates.com.  Here is a link to Cassie’s printable version. All you need is a yoga mat. What are you waiting for?

View on Amazon: yoga mat

Beginner-Inner-Thighs

 

5. Resistance Tube Workout.  Just like it says… this is a great home workout you can do in the comfort of your own living room. Resistance tubes are inexpensive, lightweight, easy-to-use, and travel well.  Check out these Ultimate Resistance Tube Moves from UK trainer Jon Stratford.

view on Amazon: resistance tubes

#jonstratford

#jonstratford

 

6. The All Body Bosu Workout. There is a good chance you have one of these at home already. Maybe in your garage if not in plain sight? I inherited mine from my friend Barbora Silva (thanks Barbora!) a few years ago. It has been resurrected from the garage as I have upped my at-home workouts considerably.  This poster, repinned on Pinterest from loveandprimal is by far the best total body Bosu workout I’ve seen. I love how it is also used for squats & lunges — awesome workout!

View on Amazon: Bosu Balance Trainer

repinned from #loveandprimal

repinned from #loveandprimal

 

7. The 100 Workout.  I have no idea who to credit for this workout. If anyone knows, will you please post it in the comments so I can update this?  Thanks!! I’ve seen it online for at least a couple of years (basically since I discovered Pinterest). It is quick and effective. Everything is done indoors except the last 10 minutes, which is a run. I PROMISE you’ll be warmed up by the time you head outdoors!

the-100-workout

 

8. Kill Those Calves Workout. Want sexy calves? This workout will give ’em to you. This is all calves, baby.  They’ll be screaming by the time you are done. But won’t you look hot in your heels?  I think so! This one is from @workouts_daily. Check out their Instagram feed here.

Don’t forget to stretch when you are done or foam roll to go a little deeper. Check out these 5 foam roller stretches to keep your muscles long and lean!

kill-those-calves

 

9. The “Sexy Back” Workout. Nope, this isn’t what JT does to stay in shape.  This is from our friends at Shape.com. The Sexy Back workout is  banish bra bulge, back pain, and bad posture. Check out the instructional video here to see more.

from Shape.com

from Shape.com

and last but not least …

10. The 5-4-3-2-1 Workout.  Only got 15 minutes? Not a problem! This 15-minute workout hits everything you need for a great at-home fat blaster – no equipment required. Again, I’m not sure who created this workout. If you know, please drop me a comment below!

54321-workout

Hope you enjoyed these! Let me know if I missed any great ones … and don’t forget to STRETCH after your workout 🙂

Live With Intention

When I woke up this morning, as many other mornings, the first thoughts I had were of course my to-do list.  While I was having my cup of coffee, I started thinking about how easy it is to let the day pass by while just living passively.

I decided that I wasn’t going to do that today!  Instead, I was going to make sure I was living with intention.

Live-With-Intention-sm

You’ve probably hear this saying before … it was made famous by Mary Anne Radmacher years ago.  Her entire quote is:

“Live with intention.
Walk to the edge.
Listen Hard.
Practice wellness.
Play with abandon.
Laugh.
Choose with no regret.
Appreciate your friends.
Continue to learn.
Do what you love.
Live as if this is all there is.”

Did you live with intention today?  If you did, that’s awesome!  If not, think about what living with intention means to you and what you can do differently tomorrow to really make it count