Des News: Keeping New Year’s Resolution Momentum

A pic of the easiest chicken dinner I refer to in the article.

The holidays seem like a distant memory- and so do a lot of our resolutions for the new year.  February is a rough month.  It’s cold.  It’s still dark.  For much of the country it’s still freezing.  Spring seems so far away.  Some of us are just hanging on.  While the gym is still busy, there is definitely a feeling of frustration among members who aren’t seeing or feeling the change they expected by now.

I feel ya.

Thankfully, my job doesn’t make my good health optional.  I have to show up.  I have to exercise.  I have to stay motivated so I can motivate others.  But just because I’m paid to do these things doesn’t mean it’s easy.  Over the years I’ve had to learn strategies to keep myself on track so I can encourage others to do the same.  I don’t have it all figured out, but I know I’m definitely further along in the process.  I feel good about where I am and where I’m headed.

So I’m sharing a few tips that have worked for me in keeping those healthy resolutions.  Remember change happens in small doses.  Be patient with you and the process.  It’s what we do when things get hard that defines us.  Enjoy the journey.

Click on the link below to read more at Deseret News.

From the Archives- First Thanksgiving

First Thanksgiving dinner. No dining room. No table. So we ate on the coffee table.
First Thanksgiving dinner. No dining room. No table. So we ate on the coffee table.

I’ve had some memorable Thanksgivings.  There was the year my husband and I traveled to Arizona to see U2 after 9/11.  We spent Thanksgiving camped outside the arena to get front row seats.  We dined on donuts and adrenaline.  There was the year we moved into our new home 6 days before Thanksgiving- we were hosting Thanksgiving that year.  Nothing motivates you to unpack boxes than the threat of large groups of people coming to visit.  But our first Thanksgiving together was perhaps the most memorable.  It was my first holiday away from my parents.  I lived in a tiny apartment in Las Vegas.  I had no dining room or table.  We ate on a coffee table.  I didn’t know how to cook for two, so I made enough to feed an army.  The gravy alone was more than enough to bathe in!  Next week we are hosting Thanksgiving again.  My parents, my brother and his wife and their kids, three of whom they adopted from Ethiopia.  My daughters.  I have more than enough blessings to count for days.  The following column was written in an attempt to try to capture some of my gratitude.  Life doesn’t have to be perfect to be good.  Enjoy.


Thanksgiving wasn’t always my favorite holiday. Growing up, Christmas was always number one. Staying up late to watch Christmas specials on t.v. because there was no DVR, an endless supply of cookies and fudge, presents- what’s not to love! Fourth of July came in at number two mostly because it’s also my birthday. Not that I’m not patriotic or love fireworks, but again, the presents thing. Halloween and Easter tied for third. Again, endless supplies of sugar. Thanksgiving fell somewhere between Valentine’s Day and Labor Day- in other words, I hated it. Forced to dress up, smile, and pretend to like Grandma’s “gourmet” asparagus side was a lot of fuss for little payoff. At least there was pie.

Nowadays, it isn’t the mountains of confections that beckon me, or the piles of gifts that twinkle my toes. It’s the chance to eat food I love with people I love, giving thanks for all the things and people I love.

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From the Archives- What Fitness Instructors Wish You Knew


Published last January as fitness classes, predictably, filled up with unsure but eager members.  These words still apply and are a good reminder to all of us, instructors and members alike, how we all have a part in a class’s success.  Enjoy!


I love my job as a fitness instructor. When I was younger I would get up early to watch Denise Austin “pump it up” on ESPN. Occasionally I would even do the workouts along with her. But mostly I would watch and wish my life to be like hers. She got paid to workout and once in awhile she got to work out on a Hawaiian beach. She got paid! After 25 years of envious viewing, I’m now living that dream (minus the Hawaiian beach- but I’m not dead yet).

That said, I love this time of year. It’s an opportunity for me, as resolution time rolls around once again, to show others how motivating group fitness classes can be. I realize it can be a bit intimidating for some to dive into that sea of change. Results happen best when instructors and members are on the same page. So, I wanted to share a few things fitness instructors wished their members knew, as well as a few things members wished their instructors knew to make 2016 the year good change happens.

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How I Recover From a Marathon

Classic.  My friend Elfi and I obviously NOT enjoying life post-race.  Keeping it real.
Classic. My friend Elfi and I obviously NOT enjoying life post-race. Keeping it real.

When you ask people to name their talents, you usually hear singing, playing piano, acting, sewing, cooking and the like.  My talent is a little off-beat.  My gift is recovery.  Whether from a hard workout or a race, recovery is key to long-term health.  A doctor once explained to me that running a marathon is like little bombs exploding in leg muscles.  How they repair and recover are key.  There are some recovery methods that aren’t in my control: my body hoards water to help the muscles recovery.  What does that mean?  It means the scale goes up significantly the week after a race.  We’re talking around 5 pounds for me.  No need to worry.  The body’s just doing what it was designed to do.

But other recovery methods are in my control.  Click on the link below to see what it is I do to get myself back in the game of life post-race.  Remember, what works for me may not work for you.  This isn’t a “how-to”.  It’s just me sharing what has been successful for me.  Enjoy.

What I Eat for Breakfast

This is by no means going to turn into a nutrition site.  I am not a nutritionist.  I do not subscribe to any particular diet.  While I try to eat healthy, I don’t deny myself anything.  What I do know is that when I eat more healthy foods, I feel better.  But I simply can’t live a life without birthday cake and marathon donuts.

That’s why I laugh when people ask me about my eating habits.  I think they expect me to rattle off a bunch of protein shake recipes and kale salad concoctions.  I can’t tell if they’re disappointed or relieved when I tell them my favorite meal is a cheeseburger and onion rings.

That said, I do try to eat a good breakfast, especially because my workouts are always in the morning.  I have to be “on” in class.  I can’t fake energy.  So, here’s a recipe for a homemade breakfast egg sandwich I eat almost every morning.  Paired with a banana, it’s really all I need.  I find it keeps me fuller longer than a bowl of cereal and is something I can eat in the car.  You can’t eat cereal in the car.  Ask my kids.

Mmmm.  Breakfast sandwiches.
Mmmm. Breakfast sandwiches.

Breakfast Sandwich Recipe

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Coat a muffin tin in cooking spray and fill each tin with egg white or one whole egg (you can scramble the egg if you like).  I like to use egg whites from Costco, but when I need a few extra calories and nutrients, I go for the whole egg.

Cook for 18 minutes or until firm.

Place one slice of cheese (your fav, of course) on a whole grain sandwich thin or english muffin.  Place cooked egg on top.

Grill until cheese is nice and melty.  I love to use my panini press for this.  No flipping required.

That’s it!  Refrigerate or freeze and just pop in the microwave for about 40 seconds.  I make a dozen at a time and keep them in the fridge.  They last about 2 weeks.  If you plan make them farther in advance, definitely freeze them.