friday find: june 7

My intention with these posts is to share something–a blog, an article, a video, a song, a person, a book, whatever–that I’ve found inspiring or informative on a weekly basis and to share my take-aways.

I’m going to start things off with a person who I’ve been internet stalking for a few weeks now whose outlook and perspective really resonates with me.

Nia Shanks rocks my socks.

I’ve been eating up her blog–from the awesome post where she tackles giving up the fat loss mindset to the one about training to be awesome and how powerful positive thinking can be –, listening to podcasts she’s a guest on, scouring youtube for her videos, and basically developing a serious girl crush on this lady lately.

Reasons I love her:

  • She keeps things uber simple.
  • She’s part of a revolution that gets back to being strong and not focusing on dieting or losing weight.
  • She doesn’t apologize for who she is.
  • She is authentic and speaks her truth. Her story–from obsessive disordered eating to empowered, intuitive eating–rocks.
  • She uses the word “awesome” almost as much as I do.
  • We share a serious love for deadlifts.

deadlifts meme

  • She is on the same wavelength as me when it comes to self worth and body image and self esteem.

Seriously though, I am SO glad I stumbled onto this woman and got sucked in.


  1. Get back to basics/simplify nutrition.
  2. Focus on performance and whatever is positive that you can do.

Do you follow Nia?
Any of this tickle your fancy?
Whose stuff are your currently obsessed with? 

Friday Fun!

A couple things caught my eye this week–and I don’t mean just cute boys or half price candy (love is in the air)…

1. My sister sent me this photo. It took me two goes to notice what I was looking for. I’m not alone, apparently!

2. A phenomenal (in my mind) post from Elizabeth Akinwhale about CrossFit and bodies and so much more. I have been writing and re-writing a post I have bottled up about this kind of thing but it’s just not where I want it to be…yet. In the meantime, read her take instead. One point I loved?

“You are responsible for your own health and happiness. How your body transforms is secondary to the discipline you’re displaying and the sense of accomplishment you earn in your daily workouts and progress towards your goals.”

3. This week I had a lovely surprise in my inbox…I’m going to TedxWaterloo next month! Crystal, a friend I met through GFC, had the wonderful idea to apply and I’m so glad I did! The countdown is on–I’m looking forward to a road trip, the event itself, and hanging out with Crystal! 🙂

Screen Shot 2013-02-14 at 1.52.04 PM

4. Valentine’s fun:

  • This lovely treat from my sister:
  • A last minute invite to an Eric Church concert with a friend
  • flowers and Valentines from some of the cutest kiddos I know
  • quality time with friends and “family” I love

5. Andddd a hefty dose of inspiration for your cheesy pleasure…


possibility adventure

don't shrink your dreams dyer weird


Happy weekend to you!

Five Friday Finds

1. My latest article in Canadian Cycling Magazine came out. It’s about dabbling in paleo eating as a cyclist. I’m darn proud of this article! Shameless self promotion here, there, and everywhere. Lucky for you you can read it online. Or buy a copy and have me sign it so you can say you knew me when! ha.

2. Mark Sisson’s newest book. I’m loving what I’ve read so far of The Primal Connection. In my future, I want to have one day a week dedicated purely to reading. In my underwear.

3. Jillian Michaels’ latest podcast. She talks about how she uses compulsive shopping to soothe herself/meet her unmet needs, similar to how people use other things (food, drugs, alcohol, facebook, whatever) for the same purpose. She’s got this right. #girlcrush

4. This video, which less makes me want to buy clothing and more makes me want to go on an adventure. What are we here for if it’s not to have a little fun?!

5. This song, which I put on repeat this week. 🙂

Friday Finds – February?!

Somehow, February is here. Luckily, so is Friday! This weekend, besides working, I have plans to get together with a lovely bunch of ladies for a brunch, maybe to watch the Superbowl, and to sleep. I’m cool like that.

This week, I couldn’t wait to share! Enjoy…

1. A summary of a book on social entrepreneurship on Actionable Books. It’s less random when I add that a friend of mine wrote this, let me have a sneak peek in return for a bit of editing, and when you realize how cool the site itself is: The site lists short summaries and takeaways from all kinds of books, written by contributors who apply to write for the site for a year and to provide a monthly contribution. It’s sort of like a book club that connects people from all over the place, the resource you wished you had when you were doing book reports in high school, and a great way to get sucked into something besides your work (read: procrastinate) all in one!

2. The viral kid president video everyone’s sharing (with good reason). I. Love. This.

3. The latest Life By Design podcast. They talked about integrity and how it applies to everything we do in our lives. Word.

4. I registered for the CrossFit Open this week. It’s 20$. Anyone can do it. It’s in March. Everyone should do it. They post workouts: you do them. I anticipate that this year will be humbling, but I also think it’s a nice way to see where I’m at and to gauge it from this year to next. Who’s with me?

Screen Shot 2013-01-31 at 9.24.44 PM

5. This cheese:6. This card from Curly Girl. Me wants in framed form, ASAP.


7. This post from Stephenie Zamora’s website on training as it applies to going after what you want. One of my favourite things about her posts are that they are badass, but also that she sums them up in these cute little photo tidbits (this one’s about living on purpose, to me!):

8. I’m back on the Jillian train. She’s got a new book and as much as I don’t really care about being “slim” for life, I’m obviously going to check it out. If I want to one up her, I’ve got to know what she’s doing!

10. This reminder. More loveeeeeee.


Happy weekend!

Anything worth sharing this week? Send ‘er on down! 

Friday Finds


In a twist on the TGIF posts I love so much, here are some things I can’t help but share with you from this week!

1. A new inspiration I’m adding to my list of “life coaches doing cool things”. I stumbled onto Stephenie Zemora’s website after reading an article or four of hers on the huffington post last week. It was easy to get sucked in!

2. “Stop Saying ‘Healthy’ When You Mean ‘Thin'”…short, sweet, and cheeky. Amen to this!

3. “Stefani’s Soul on a Plate” on Paleo for Women. Love: her honesty, her story, and this site. A lot of what she writes about in this post, which chronicles her struggles–and eventual successes–with eating and health, hits close to home. For that, it’s inspiring!

4. “What is it here to teach you?” from Brooke Castillo’s blog. She’s talking about overcoming overeating but I think the idea applies to “getting rid of” any problem you might be struggling with. Highlights were:

  • the fact that she introduces the post with a stellar quote:“Nothing ever goes away until it has taught us what we need to know. Even if we run a hundred miles an hour to the other side of the continent, we find the very same problem awaiting us when we arrive.” -Pema Chodron
  • the fact that she overcame her overeating (which she says is just like the other issues people use to cope):

“It wasn’t until I did the freeing work of asking myself, “Why?” that I begun to learn what I needed to know.  Once I moved past the behavior and results (which were just symptoms of my thinking) and focused on the cause, I began to learn about the person I really am.  I learned to listen and trust my body. I learned to pay attention to myself and find out what really mattered to my soul.  I uncovered and removed programming I had received as a child that was not helpful or even true for me anymore.  I found out what I needed to know.”

5. This cheese from Andrea Owen’s facebook page (it wouldn’t be a Friday post without some inspirational schtuff, right?!).


TGIF! I hope you have a stellar Friday. This weekend’s major goal for me? Sleep, recuperate, and spend time with friends. Tackle ever growing to do list…later!


TGIF Fall kickoff

Happy Friday and happy fall. It’s hard to believe it’s back to school and the leaves are changing colour, but my calendar says September so I’m accepting reality and embracing the change of season.  

5 reasons I’m embracing fall

1. boots – I have too many. Cowgirl, combat, knee-high, ankle. Bah, I love boots!

2. pumpkins – Eating them, carving them, the scent of them (soaps, candles, etc.) pulling over on the side of the road to snap photos of them. What’s not to love?

3. fall fairs 

4. sunflowers

5. getting closer to Christmas! (108 days, FYI)

4 inspirational images 





3 songs I added to my playlist this week 

1. An old fav pump-up:

2. One I’ve meant to add to the yoga list for a while:

3. Random but lovely:

2 things I’m pumped for this weekend

1. A trip to Sarnia which promises some sisterly/motherly bonding. We’re heading to Art in the Park, a spot where a bunch of vendors set up and sell their crafts/creations. I love it and going was a yearly tradition for so long until university kicked around but I’m looking forward to going back. In Sarnia, it’s a small world so I’m sure I’ll see some familiar faces. We’re also planning on getting some breakfast or brunch, which is sure to be delicious!

2. My first sweat session at West London Crossfit this Sunday. I don’t start my learning experience (the on ramp program) ’til next week, but oh am I eager!

1 podcast I have to share. 

1. Yes, I still love the Life By Design podcast every week. But I’m loving loving loving the Live. Love. Eat. podcast by Stefani, whose site Paleo For Women is oh so awesome. Go there. ASAP. Listen to these. ASAP. LOVE! My fav page on her site? Her mission and description of her movement, which I want in on. My fav take-away from it:

“Paleo for Women is about empowerment. It’s about embracing a woman’s body as a natural, evolved organism, and about using whatever experience and knowledge a woman has to nourish and love herself as that organism. It’s about owning womanhood as evolved, as powerful, as individual, and real. It’s about saying Yes to life and No to social norms about body image, identity, presentation, and lifestyle.”

She’s on my wavelength. Health is bigger than weight. Abundance rocks.

“Just because you are beautiful does not mean that others are less beautiful, and just because they are beautiful does not mean you are less so.”

Did I mention I love this site?!

That’s all folks!

What are you up to this weekend?
What’s one site/blog/podcast you’re loving lately?
Any good songs added to your playlist this week? 


Holy poop – it’s Labour Day weekend.

How the heck did we get here so fast?

This week’s TGIF post came together really easily…

5 wordy (awesome) images




4 links I loved

4. Charlotte’s “Would you say losing weight is the “hardest, most important” thing you’ve ever done?”  post yesterday. My favourite insight was about how weight loss is “it’s one of the great narratives of our time. Dieting is a near-universal experience for first world people.”

3. Another Great Fitness Experiment (love!) link, this one about crossfit that I think touches on something a lot of people struggle with. I know what I thought before was that it was too high intensity and not based on much progression (i.e. I thought it was just random, which I think a lot of people who just check out the main site might think). The thing that people realize later–and I realized after talking to one of my friends who is a crossfit trainer in London, after hearing how the SC is bringing crossfit into what they’re doing, and after reading/deciding to do my cert–is that it’s not like that. Within a crossfit facility, things DO make sense. Workouts are scaled. Planned. Progressive. All that good stuff. 🙂

2. Paleoista’s take on orthorexia. I’m not sure if Nell Stephenson has ever had an eating disorder, but this is a topic I definitely want to get into at some point…soon. Her question, “Ok, so being interested in what we put in our bodies, where it came from and how it was prepared is a mental health concern?” screamed out to me because I think it’s a bigger concern to NOT care. That being said, caring about what you put in has to come from a healthy point–the source of motivation is what’s important.


3 weekend goals

3. Bicycle! Bicycle!

2. Making it to the farmer’s market.

1. Spending as much time with friends and family as possible — beach day, lunch dates, barbecues, etc.!

2 quotes I love

2. “Do not follow where the path may lead. Go instead where there is no path and leave a trail.” ~ Harold R. McAlindon

1. “The best way to make your dreams come true is to wake up.” ~ Paul Valery

1 song I have on repeat this week

1. This one, which I heard at the lululemon event last weekend and abso-freaking-lutely loved!

What did you love this week?
What are you up to this weekend? 

TGIF Toronto

Oh hey there — for those of you who are missing me dearly at the Healthy Living Summit, know that I’m not there because I registered early for the CanfitPro conference and trade show and Tough Mudder this weekend way back when…bad planning!

I’ve been slacking on the Friday posts but if you have me on facebook you know I’ve still been linking up to all kinds of interesting, cheesy, funny, etc. things!

Here goes — I love these posts!

5 quotes to inspire you






4 books I have on the go

I actually think there’s more than these going — but that’s okay. I like to have my mind in a bunch of really great places at once — it keeps things itneresting!

1. The Book of Awesome – Great for whenever I need a little pick me up!

2. Six Pillars of Self Esteem – I’m refusing to rush through this — I’m taking notes, highlighting, and having a lot of “aha” moments along the way!

3. Real Food: What to eat and why – Memoir like and filled with common sense, this book is comforting.

4. Good Calories, Bad Calories – This one is on my “get reading eventually” list since it’s the next LBD book club book. I’m looking forward to it because Taubes’ newer book (Why We Get Fat) was eye-opening!

3 links worth checking out

1. Paleo For Women’s “Self Love and Weight Loss: Enemies of Bed-fellows?” post, which oh so eloquently summed up the issue of trying to change your body without deeming it wrong:

“Self-love is not antagonistic to weight loss. Nor is self-love antagonistic to those of us who need to gain weight. Instead, self-love is about working in partnership with our bodies to achieve a holistically healthy and beautiful existence, for all of us. Self-love is about providing the body with the tools it needs to get healthy and vibrant and radiant, while never hating it for looking or behaving a certain way.”

2. “The Politics of Food Guides” on CBC. Important issue. I like that Yoni Freedhoff was in here!

3. “Is Paleo Even Paleo? And Does It Even Matter?” on Chris Kessler’s blog. His thoughts are that it doesn’t really matter what people ate way back when but it does matter that we know what we need to eat now to feel and perform our best. And he touches on the kind of stigma around the name, which I found interesting. Amen to eating what’s healthiest for us without stressing over the label.

2 songs I have on repeat



1 thing I’m pretty freaking excited about

1. Tough Mudder!

Anything worth sharing today?
What’d you think of the article about food guides?
What song is on repeat for you right now?



Too much TGIF!

The “too much” isn’t because this week was long — if it was long it was long and AWESOME — but because I am so excited for this weekend!

5 quotes in picture form

1. Remember this one?

2.  Love this.

3. Reminder to me — and motivation to try something new!

4. So much cheese — but I am trying to be a leader here so this one just calls out to me!

5. Yeah I did…

4 reasons I woke up smiling today

1. I didn’t hear rain and the radar confirms that this morning at least should be a good bike riding kind of day!

2. I went to bed happy because I got to watch a great sunset and force my friend to sit through the 32 minute DVD from my Virginia trip. There was also fat tire involved.

No instagram required to make this one awesome!
The good stuff I brought back from Virginia!

3. I had a great night last night and it started with my first adjustment at Gainsborough Family Chiropractic. Even though they say people feel results after on average 12 visits, I argue you can feel a change after one! Maybe because you have to start somewhere, maybe because going made me feel like I’m taking a first step of a big change (“A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step”)…I’m not sure! What I know is that I’ve never felt so comfortable or happy (for lack of a better word) in a place–the studio is just beautiful and cool (another lack of a better word–the only one I’m not willing to resort to using is nice, even though these are nice people so it would be an accurate descriptor!), and I’ve never been to a chiropractor who tests before. It’s refreshing, exciting, and very interesting to me. When Dr. Kreso asked if I had any questions, I really didn’t. Even though the one thing I have really learned from these guys is to be critical and think logically, I don’t have anything to be critical of here. I’m putting a bit of blind faith in all of this and like I said, seeing the results of the testing was pretty amazing–it just made sense and so it follows that being as willing to jump in full swing is the logical thing to do!

4. After my appointment yesterday, I popped into Chapters (all my money goes to books, spandex, groceries, and coffee–seriously. oh wait, froyo!) and I made an impulse purchase. After getting the awesome surprise package in the mail, how could I pass up these cards? I can’t wait to send them to people. If I ask you for your address it’s cuz I lost my contacts…not cuz there’s a card en route for you ;)!

3 things I’m really looking forward to this weekend

1. Hanging out with friends tonight –> There’s yoga on the agenda followed by quality time, beers, and the Olympics! PLUS my gal pal Nina is coming down from Toronto for the night and I miss the crap out of her!

2. Li’l Mudder tomorrow –> It’s a “dress rehearsal” for Tough Mudder and luckily I got linked up with the people running this tomorrow morning. I’m really looking forward to it even if I do have some butterflies. The description just made it too much fun to be missed:

“The Li’l Mudder is a short 12km course littered with a handful of obstacles (some fun, some tricky and others just plain hell) that’ll give SC members a great summer time challenge and a for those on the SC team; a good taste of what to expect at the real Tough Mudder.”

Reminder: Workouts should scare you a bit, right? That means they’re pushing you! 😀

3. Quality time with my sister –> After tomorrow’s event I’m driving to Windsor for a sleepover, some hiking, and maybe even some shopping. But what I’m most jacked about is getting to see my sister, who has been as busy or more so than I have (if that’s possible) so our quality time has been limited!

2 blog posts you need to read

1. That made an already awesome and inspiring woman all the more amazing to me. I was sucked into the GFC site and read Dr. Rachelle’s story and was just amazed. I can’t do it justice in a summary but if you only click on one link from my site today, make it this one. Taking control of your own health and life/choosing a different course — how can you not be inspired?

2. I have to plug Amber at Go Kaleo’s latest post about supplements. She doesn’t post too much on her blog but she’s all over Facebook doing awesome things so when she does write a longer post I get so excited. 🙂 And this one is no less awesome than anything else she’s done. I really couldn’t agree more with most of what she says and she has a knack for summing it up in a no nonsense way:

“… just think critically about the claims the product, and/or the person selling it is making. Humans thrived for millions of years before supplements and meal replacement products were invented. If they were necessary for muscle development, increased strength, weight loss, or optimal health we would have died out a million years ago. These products are convenient and practical, but not necessary or optimal.”

Amen to that!

1 thing to laugh at

1. hahahaha

Do you have any funny workout jokes?
What are you doing this weekend?
When’s the last time you watched a sunset?

TGIF vacation edition

Oh hey there! I’m safe and sound in Pennsylvania en route to Delaware to bike like a maniac or die trying. What better way to keep you up to date with my beloved wireless than to use my TGiF as a recap?! I promise tons of random links and cheesy photos upon my return.
ps I am writing this on Thursday out of pure excitement for tomorrow 😉
5 meals/eats on the road

In this respect the best word to use is random. Luckily we have full kitchens as of tomorrow night so things should get a bit less eating beef jerky and dried fruit and apples from my bag like its going out of style. And today I had an amaze balls steak so win win win.

5 Cobb salad sans cheese from panera


4 I’ll gladly sample off someone’s appetizer — 80/20 right?


3 makeshift lunch


2 breakie on the go


1 tonight’s crowning glory – god did I want a steak!



4 things I bought today
Tax free in Delaware? I don’t mind if I do!


4 a bunch of bars – has anyone tried these LARA bars? I’m going to give em a shot.

3 A shirt from target – I didn’t try it on so I’m hoping for the best!

2 a tube – being prepared is key!

1 chamois butter – number one for a reason! 😉

3 embarrassing selfies
3 cleaning my bike


2 Rest stop washroom?


1 in the car


2 workouts
2 Today’s 30 minute run on some awesome Trails at a park nearby, which I added 15 minutes of rounds of 15 each jumping jacks, squats, pushups, sit ups, bench step ups or jumps, and triceps dips = short and sweet and sweaty and sunny!


1 last night’s hilly ride – I stayed upright. But I won’t lie I’m really scared of riding tomorrow down fast hills. Oh god I hope these “screaming descents” get easier with practice!


1 Adorbs photo of our greeting committee


…and a bonus!