Fit From Within

We have all heard the phrase "Mind Over Matter"....but have you really actually made that connection that your mind is actually stronger then your physical body?
If we believe we won't achieve something, we have already put the negative thoughts into our brain and set ourselves up for failure. Being physically fit starts with our mindset and is pulled from within.
A healthy physical body starts with a healthy mind. 
For the last 11 years of my life, I have made a conscious effort to be physically fit. But for the majority of those years, like most women, my brain was focused more on being "skinny" over being "strong".
In college, I looked at food as an enemy. I would go through cycles of restriction, which then lead to binging when I did eat something unhealthy. I majored in Nutrition and minored in exercise science, but my mindset wasn't always the healthiest, even though at the time I thought it was. Looking back I am able to realize my patterns and identify my unhealthy mind.
When I got pregnant, I was pulled outside of my comfort zone and no longer was in control of my growing body. For 2 years prior I had been taking adderall DAILY. Never in my life have I been one to take or do any type of drugs. It gave me this sense of energy, I could study for hours and it totally curbed my appetite. I dropped weight and felt like this was the miracle drug of all time.
At the time, what started as something to help me through my last year of college, ended up being a secret addiction. I would take it daily for energy and to help me run nearly 10 miles a day. Again, at the time I never thought it was a problem. 
Looking back, I feel completely blessed by my unplanned pregnancy. 
The day I found out I was pregnant with my first child, was the day I quit taking adderall. Something from within clicked and I knew I needed to be the healthiest me for this child to grow, and that meant letting go of the control adderall had on my life.
From that point forward, I have made the decision to really be healthy. My health starts from WITHIN my mind. I am truly thankful that God gave me my children to be able to realize that I needed to overcome my own struggles to be the best mom these children deserve. God uses our struggles to make something beautiful.
I now believe real energy comes from the food we eat, the amount of sleep we get and literally leading an overall healthy lifestyle. There are no quick fixes.
Even if someone looks healthy physically, you never know where their mindset really is. I believe true happiness and health starts from within your soul. 
A healthy mindset is the only way we can make physical change. Once you make that connection, is when you can truly be fit from within.


Going Beyond The Physical

Almost exactly a year ago, I decided I had had enough of the current gym I was at. The classes weren't good, I couldn't bring my children and I was ready to find a place that would be more than just a "gym".
Never in a million years did I think I would end up finding somewhere that my kids and I would develop friendships and eventually find my deep love for YOGA.
When I first started doing yoga a year ago, I HAD NO CLUE what I was doing. Over time, I got better and not only did my body reap the benefits, but it became more than a physical connection.
It sounds insane, but it became a place I could come and be myself for one hour.
Being a mom to two children who aren't even two years apart, YOGA gave me something that I could call my own for just an hour.
Not many things in my day are JUST MINE....my practice became something that could be mine, and it has become a beautiful journey.
I had no idea there were different styles of yoga. My sister used to do yoga ten years ago, and it was something I just didn't ever see myself doing. I preferred a kickboxing class or something a bit more "hardcore".  What I have come to realize is there are many different styles of yoga and I have chosen to fall in love with a Vinyasa style, because it actually is hardcore.
It also gets to my core...my physical AND emotional core.

1.) It all starts with your breath.
How often do you think about breathing? You don't because it's something we do so naturally. If you go to a YOGA class and there is no mention about breath, leave. Just kidding. In all seriousness, your breath is the most IMPORTANT part of your practice.
In a hot Vinyasa class, USUALLY you use your ujjayi pranayama. 
This breath has an "oceanic" type sound. Basically inhaling and exhaling through the nose, keeping your mouth shut. This breath is used to help build heat in your body, but also teaches you to breathe when things get tough. SO coming to your breath in a pose, will help your mind focus and connect and maybe bring you a little deeper. The beauty of learning to breathe is something we can use off the mat in ANY situation.

If you go to a yoga class where the teacher isn't doing the practice, it isn't because he/she is lazy. BELIEVE ME, I would love to stand up in front of you and practice the entire time. However, that brings the students into watch-asana pose (haha where they just stare in amusement instead of doing their practice).
It is actually WAY HARDER to guide a class (of all levels) without doing it. We do this because this YOGA PRACTICE IS YOURS. Teachers are there to guide you, not do the practice. The beauty of a VINYASA CLASS is that you CAN DO whatever feels good for you. No judgement.
If you are just listening to the ques from the instructor, you can allow yourself to go beyond the physical of the practice, and really start to notice what feels awesome in YOUR BODY.


People go to yoga for so many different reasons. To become stronger, more flexible, to be less stressed. Whatever reason you go there for, allow that to be your time to get out of your head and believe in yourself. YOUR MIND IS STRONGER THAN YOUR PHYSICAL BODY!
How often in life do we listen to the fears and little voices in our heads saying you aren't good enough? This time allows you to let go and become a free spirit of unconditional love.


A few weeks ago I attended a conference where I took some of the most amazing yoga classes from Jonny Kest. We were packed like sardines, with just a little bit of space between one another, and actually had to help each other in certain poses.
We live in such a touch phobic society where people are so afraid to touch someone. We think that yoga is such a serious practice, when over all, maybe just getting closer to the random person next to us is just the healing they need. We never know what our neighbor is going through, but yoga can be that unconditional love and support that someone may need.

5.) Works your MIND & BODY

I don't know many types of exercise that work your entire body. By that I mean, yoga can really go beyond the physical. In a Vinyasa style practice you learn sequences that get your heart pumping, and then after going through them a couple of times as a community, you are able to take those sequences and flow on your own. You are working your body and your mind to remember those poses. You have the option to add what you need and leave out what you don't. This is hard for people because maybe they don't want to let go and just flow...but that is the beauty of a true vinyasa practice.


The reason why I fell in love with vinyasa was because I experienced unconditional love during my practice. My mind was clear, my body was challenged and most importantly my heart is filled with unconditional love. We place judgements on people so easily, that this practice has allowed me to realize that we are all made beautifully. God has created each and every one of us so uniquely, that our bones, body structure and genetic makeup are so different. What my neighbor in a yoga room does has no bearings on me because I don't want to look or be like anyone else.

I absolutely love VINYASA....and it has become a part of who I am. The physical poses that we do is just a small portion of what YOGA really is. I urge you to try vinyasa, you may get hooked.

Alicia XOXO


Fun & Active Family Vacations


With Spring Break quickly approaching, I thought this would be a great opportunity to have a mother and travel expert chime in on traveling during this time of year! 

Kendra Thornton: Travel advocate, TV spokesperson, PR businesswoman, proud wife and mama of 3. I am a long time travel expert who has been packing my bags and traveling the world since I was 3 months old! I've found my utmost desire in life is right here in my own home. I have mixed my excitement for travel by sharing some of my personal traveling tips. Enjoy!

Fun and Active Family Vacations

This year my family has a variety of trips on our agenda that we are taking together 

and the first two right off the bat will be Colorado for some skiing and Orlando to 

visit the parks and have some amusement fun! Since my family is getting in the

mindset to vacation, I thought that it would be the perfect time to give you some 

ideas on how you can keep your family healthy and active on the road! Planning

ahead is the key, and in time, you’ll do it smoothly and without thought.

1.) Go to the grocery store and pack food before you leave. Think creatively to satisfy 

for your kids. For example, granola bars can be a tasty treat and better than candy 

bars. If you’re driving, then preparing and packing any kind of sandwich (or 

sandwiches) is a snap. Use fruit and water to round out meals. Your options are a

bit more limited if you’re flying, but never worry. You can stow trail mix, dried fruits 

and granola bars in an extra-large purse.

2.) Pack “active wear” no matter where you go so your family is excited and motivated 

to exercise. If you’re hitting the road, a basketball or tennis racquets and balls 

are easy to pack, as are gloves and baseballs. If you’re flying, you’ll probably need 

to forgo the equipment, but wear tennis shoes on the plane, and you can walk 

anywhere at your destination!

3.) Research what your vacation spot has available. Look for walking trails, tennis 

courts, parks and the like. If you are staying in a city, reserve a hotel in a walk-able 

area, and don’t forget the pool for swimming fun! A lot of vacations, such as theme-
park vacations, have walking time built in, but don’t overdo the junk-food munchies 

at these theme parks.

4.)Let your children stray from their routines—but not too much. Staying up later 

than usual is fine, as is letting them have an extra sweet or two a day. But don’t 

demolish their routines because you want to keep setting a fine example and not 

struggle to change their new bad behaviors once you are back home. When my 

family goes to Disney World, I’m going to make sure to check out Orlando hotels that 

will have a quiet hours policy to ensure my family gets the sleep that will be needed. 

5.) For all of your planning and research, remember one thing: Kick back, relax and 

have a great time. You’re able to do this because of your hard work that makes a 

fun vacation for everyone. Snap photos of your active vacation for lifetime family 


Do you have other ideas for active family vacations? What did your parents do, and 

what steps do you take with your kids now—even if you’re not on vacation? I would 

love hear some of your own personal tips!


Why the SCALE will never ever be my validation (again).

If you've paid any attention to the media hype in the last week, you may have heard the story about Biggest Loser contestant Rachel Fredrickson. In a short four and half months, Rachel went from 260 pounds to a little tiny 105 pounds. YES, she lost 155 pounds in such a short amount of time. 
I think many people don't realize that this is a game show to win a prize of $250,000 (along with striving to lose weight and become healthy). As much as I love a good life changing story, I also do realize $250,000 is a life changing amount of money for a 24 year old girl. I can only hope and pray that this girl lost that much weight to win the prize and will put a little more weight on to maintain a healthy lifestyle. Hopefully she will also know that the scale shouldn't be her validation, nor should what people say (negative or positive) about her.

I can remember 5 years ago when my life was completely validated by the number on the scale. It would make or break my day based on what the scale said. YIKES.

 It wasn't until I unexpectedly became pregnant with my first son, that I  realized couldn't control my weight because I had a person living inside of me. It freaked me out to see the numbers on the scale increase with every doctor appointment. For the first time, the scale couldn't be my validation. That was a huge turning point in my life. I freaked out wondering if I could ever get in shape post baby, and I did, only to get pregnant again with my second son. Due to those pregnancies, I was able to go beyond the physical and learn that it didn't matter what the scale said. You want to know why:

1.) I'm a Child of God
 HECK YES!!! I learned that I am made in the image of God. I've always known this, but it wasn't until I was given children that I really understood this. GOD doesn't make junk. Every person he makes is unique. So with every "flaw" you have, you were created beautiful.  Knowing and having faith that goes beyond the physical helped me completely grow in this area of my life.
Psalm 139:14 I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well.

2.) Being a Wife
Being a wife has showed me that I don't only have myself to worry about anymore. The minute I said "I do", we became one forever. If I don't love myself, how could my husband? The number on the scale became a small little detail of our lives.

3.) Being A Mother
Do you know the amazingness (and of course hectic-ness) that comes along with being a mother? The responsibility is greater than anything because we are the ones shaping these children for life. They model what they see. Because of these boys, I was able to face a fear of seeing the scale number. They don't realize it, but because of those pregnancies, I was able to realize so much about myself. There is no time for a scale to validate me when I'm busy being super-mom. Can I get an amen mamas? 

Want to know the key to a healthy and balanced life? It's consistency. I don't weigh myself often at all. I love leading a healthy life based on eating well, being happy and exercising regularly. That is what makes me feel good and motivates me. I have never felt more free and self- confident now that the bondage of validation from a scale has moved out of my life! PEACE OUT scale. Ain't nobody got time for that. 

Knowing that you are more than a number and striving to lead a healthy life is really what matters most.