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As summer approaches, many people set a goal to get in shape for the warmer months. However, focusing solely on short-term results can lead to a cycle of yo-yo dieting and exercise patterns that ultimately fail to produce long-term success. Here are some reasons why just getting in shape for summer doesn’t work long term:

To achieve long-term fitness success, it’s important to focus on making healthy lifestyle changes that can be maintained year-round. This means:

By shifting the focus from short-term aesthetic goals to long-term health and wellness, we can create a sustainable and healthy lifestyle that extends far beyond the summer months.

Finding a protein smoothie/shake I have actually enjoyed has been a challenge over the years! The recipe below is by FAR my favorite one, and will include all the links you need to order the products to make it. Here it is:

Starting off you will need a base for your smoothie. Some choose almond milk or oat milk. Others prefer lactaid milk or organic milk. It is up to you and your dietary needs. You will need 1c of base. Add 2-3 ice cubes on top of this.

Next up are the fruits that go into the smoothie. I usually add 1/2 of a sweet banana, 3 strawberries, and a handful of berries.

If you are a veggie person a handful of spinach can go in there too! This is optional.

I also add 1 TBSP of organic peanut butter OR almond butter. I LOVE the Maranatha brand. Here is a link (ad) to their product:

Another optional add is Anthony’s organic coffee grounds. I only add 1 tsp of this on the days I need a little pick me up. Here is the link (ad) to their product:

Last but not least are the proteins I use to top off this delicious smoothie. I use 1 scoop of Vital Proteins collagen peptides and 1-2 Tbsp. of Nutribiotic Chocolate protein. Links (ad) are both below:

Last but not least! How do you blend all these ingredients together? I use the magic bullet! This is a blender with a plastic cup included. No messy clean up as there can be with a traditional blender. The link (ad) is below:

Here is a REEL showing you all these steps combined! Let me know how you liked your smoothie!

DISCLOSURE: This post contains affiliate links. This means, at no extra cost to you, we make a small commission if you purchase a product through these links. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. This helps support CGM Fitness. Thank you!

Everyone has a different level of love (or hate) for exercise. The closer you can come to at least liking, if not flat-out loving your workout, the better the results will be! The amount of enjoyment you get out of exercising is a predictor of how much you will actually do it.

If you have always been on the fence about exercising, chances are you are not truly enjoying your workout. Start with answering these questions about your workout:

  1. Are You a Creature of Habit or Do You Thrive on Variety? Whatever is true for your food, music and movie tastes will likely hold the same for exercise. If you are a creature of habit, you may be content with a run everyday. However, if you like to mix things up, you may want to run one day, strength train the next, and do yoga on alternating days.
  2. What is Your Goal? Identify what it is you want to accomplish. Set a goal such as improving cardiovascular health, getting stronger, or running a 10K. Get excited when each workout is bringing you closer to your goals. If it is not, chances are you won’t enjoy it as much.
  3. What Are You Good At? It is only human nature to enjoy the activities you are good at! The confidence in your exercise ability is a huge factor in how often you are likely to engage in it. Even exercise newbies will find a form of exercise they feel more confident in than others. Start with that form! As you gain confidence, you will likely want to further expand your horizons.
  4. Do You Like to Workout Alone or With Others? Some people value their alone time at the gym, while others feel they need social support. If an introvert, going on a solo run or lifting weights alone may help to clear your head. However, if you are an extrovert doing a group fitness class may be more fun. Small group sessions and 1:1 Personal Training sessions are possibilities as well to get some engagement.
  5. Do You Like to Be Indoors or Outdoors? Finding the right environment to support physical and mental health is extremely important. When it’s nice weather, multiple indoor workouts can be performed outside.
  6. What is Your Exercise Vibe? Do you prefer a high-energy environment or a calming yoga studio? Do you like a competitive setting or a more social environment? Do you prefer your instructor to be more inspirational, informative or a drill-sergeant?

Once you have answered these questions, it is time to experiment! Try any workout out that you think may be a fit, and give it THREE tries before ruling it out. Take this as a fun, learning experimental experience to see what works for YOU! If you haven’t tried a FREE trial of a workout (Live or on-demand) on my website, ask yourself these questions. Try the one that you feel best fits your personality.

Winter is here, and for some that may equal those dreaded winter blues. Do you feel sad, lethargic, experience difficulty focusing or fatigue during winter? You’re not alone. With colder weather and shorter days, a lot of us experience the winter blues. For many, this feeling is temporary and can be managed with simple lifestyle changes. But for others, it can be a more severe type of depression called Seasonal Affective Disorder, which reaching out to a health care provider can be helpful for. This blog is focused on those who tend to have a harder time during the colder months. So if that sounds like you, there is good news! Here are some steps you can take to beat the winter blues. 

If you feel like the symptoms are severe please seek professional help. There is a major difference between feeling the winter blues and Seasonal Affective Disorder. Feeling sad can be normal during the colder months, however if it’s interfering with your ability to function in your daily life, it could be serious and you should seek professional help. 

During the winter months, many of us leave the house when it is still dark and we sit in offices with barely any windows all day. We go outside less because of how cold it is and we return home usually when its already dark. During these seasons it’s easier to feel a sense sadness and fatigue. Here is what can help ease those feelings.

Turn the TV OFF!

 During the winter months we tend to stay inside more and we can easily spend hours watching tv or the news. Minimize the time you spend watching the news. If it’s on an endless cycle we can begin to feel depressed by some of the news we are hearing. (It’s hardly ever good!) Make a plan to limit your TV time and find other ways to entertain yourself. Reading a book can help transfer you to another place and time. Research recipes you’ve been wanting to try. That recipe you saw on a buzzfeed article or on Instagram — give it a go!

Try a new hobby or activity. It could be as simple as trying a new board or card game, cooking, crafts, knitting or outdoor activities if you don’t mind the cold. You may find a new hobby or passion that gets you through these cold darker months.

Boost Your Mood and Ambiance

Don’t fight the season, instead embrace it! Use some ambient lighting to turn up the coziness level. Light some candles, choose a scent you love that brings you happiness or triggers a memory that brings you joy. Get some cozy and soft textiles and lounge wear you love. Maybe even some silly socks or fun slippers! Create a playlist that you love.

Getting quality foods in your system is important. Since getting vitamin D is harder during the winter months, make sure you’re eating foods with vitamin D. These can include salmon, sardines, egg yolks, red meat, and vitamin fortified cereals. Good quality food can help balance your mood. Winter is a great time to break out grandma’s old recipes or try something nourishing and comforting.

Seek Out The Sun

Getting outside is important during the winter months. Even though it’s colder and wetter, go outside as much as possible. Take a drive to a warmer location and stay for a few days if you need to. If you can’t travel thats ok. Open those curtains and let in natural light. Put on your coziest warm clothes and go for a walk around your neighborhood in the daylight.

Physical Activity

Start a workout program or even just go for regular walks. Exercise has been shown to boost mood, decrease the symptoms of depression and reduce stress. You can start slow with 10 minutes a day and each week increase by 10 minutes till you can get 60 minutes a day of physical activity. The simplest thing you can do is get outside and go for a walk. In a Harvard study, people who walked just 20 min a day had 43% fewer sick days than those who didn’t. That increased immune system power is crucial during the colder months. 

Reach Out!

Contact those who bring you happiness and who fill you with joy. Your support system of family and friends is crucial for fending off winter blues. A phone call, getting together for coffee or dinner, a walk together or even if by zoom if needed. Getting together or socializing helps us all. It boosts our mood and strengthens bonds. We all need that especially during those tough colder months. 

There are a lot of changes we can make to help us during these winter months to bring us joy and bring joy to others. Many of them small and manageable! However, if you feel like nothing is working and are finding yourself isolating and having difficulty getting on with your daily life please seek help. You are not alone. Depression is a serious matter and is not something to be ashamed of. We all need help from time to time. So if you feel like this steps aren’t helping. Let your support system know and ask for help from a professional. 

Fitness goals require more than just simply picking a plan and going for it. To achieve the most success, focus on wellness habits you can start through a series of gradual increments. Trying to start a new habit or achieve a fitness goal with life-altering changes can lead to failure, frustration, injury or dropout.

Step 1: Creating Your Fitness Goal

In order to establish a general goal, determine the one thing — your limiting factor — that keeps you from achieving that goal. Do you want to get in better shape, lose weight or eat healthier? Remember, only action leads to change! “Don’t do X” is not an action plan. “Do more Y” is.

Now, take those general action statements and shape them into a fitness goal you can reach this year. Effective goals are SMART, or:

Write down your fitness goal in a spot where you will see it regularly. Research shows that people who take a few minutes to put their goals on paper are five to 10 times more likely to achieve them. So pull out a pen, paper and your sneakers and get started!

Step 2: Put Your Fitness Plan Into Action

With your long-term goal in mind, start looking at what you can do to now to make it happen.

Once you an identify what you need to work on and the skills you need to successfully achieve your long-term goal, break them down into realistic, smaller behavior-based goals. These will help hold you accountable and responsible for the changes you’ll make in your life.

Your short-term goals are like a domino effect. Each new habit should set off a positive chain reaction toward your long-term goal. Once you have been consistent for 14 to 21 days, pick another short-term goal. The goal is to practice simple, strategic actions that build up over time.

The New Year is a wonderful time to set some new goals. These goals should be SMART and attainable over time. No need to stress about a NEW YOU! Focus on goals first!

One of my main goals is to make it fun for women to prioritize regular physical activity in their lives. We know that even just 10 minutes of exercise a day can make a big impact on your physical and mental well-being. One of the most critical aspects of feeling good from movement, though, is consistency. Consistency is key to maintaining a healthy lifestyle.

If you are trying to learn how to stay consistent with working out, just know it isn’t always easy to workout every day. We all have days where we have a jam-packed schedule, the day gets away from us, or we simply just don’t want to workout. It is my goal to make your fitness journey manageable and enjoyable, even on those challenging days.


I know that it seems obvious, but it is so important to find a workout you look forward to doing. If you aren’t excited to do your workout, it will be much more difficult to follow through with it. Looking forward to and loving your workout will make it easier to maintain a consistent workout schedule.


Community and connection are a big part of life, and they extend to working out! Whether you find community through workout classes or schedule time to workout with your bestie (online or at home), finding workout buddies helps to hold us all accountable. Showing up for both your buddy and yourself makes it easier to get the workout session done on days when you’re just not feeling it.


I am a big fan of shorter workouts or mini workouts. On days when I really don’t feel like working out, I take a deep breath and tell myself that I can commit to just 12 minutes of movement. Every single time I do half of one of my 25 minute shorter workouts, I feel so much better. I usually end up finishing the 25 min workout OR saving the rest for later since my energy levels are so much better!


I am a big advocate for making things easy. I personally like to workout in the morning (when I teach), so I set out my workout clothes the night before so I don’t have to think about picking an outfit first thing in the morning. You can also set out your mat, weights, and have your iced coffee ready to go in the fridge so you don’t have to think about those things, too!


As you embark on your fitness journey, consider setting smaller, realistic goals on the way to your ultimate fitness goal. Instead of focusing solely on the end result, try shifting your focus to small victories, such as improving your workout consistency or increasing your strength. These smaller goals can act as stepping stones on your path to a healthier lifestyle, providing you with a sense of achievement along the way. Remember, the key to developing a consistent workout routine is building a workout habit. Consistency is the secret ingredient to reaching any fitness goal. Incorporating regular workout routines into your weekly workout plan can greatly assist in creating this habit. Don’t forget, it’s your journey, and it’s not about perfection, but about steady progress. Enjoy each step along the way and embrace the accomplishment of showing up for yourself!


Even if we use all of these hacks to stay consistent, there are still going to be days where we just don’t have the energy to workout- and that’s okay! On these days, it is important to remember that movement doesn’t need to be a structured workout. Choosing to take a walk to grab a coffee, parking further away in the parking lot during your day of errands, and taking a break from work to do some stretching all help!

Feeling stuck? If you have never taken one of my classes (Live OR recorded), head to and add a LIVE or RECORDING to your cart. At checkout use code WELCOMECGM to get the class FREE! Classes range from 25-50 min with multiple formats available!

As the days grow shorter and colder, many people struggle with the winter blues. Even though autumn and winter are filled with beauty and inspiration, they also can be challenging – especially for those who thrive in the sunnier seasons. The seasons have a notable impact on most of us, even if we don’t always realize it. Each season has its highs and lows, and each one is filled with valuable life lessons, but some seasons can be more difficult than others. If you find your mental health suffers in autumn and winter, here are some tips you might try to help make these seasons more enjoyable.

1. Venture outdoors 

The lack of light and shorter days can make it tough to go outside, but if you’re feeling down, making the effort to spend time in the fresh air can really help. Even just a quick walk around the block can improve your mood.

2. Seek sunlight

Pull up the blinds! Open the curtains! The lack of sunlight is one of the reasons for feeling down during darker seasons, so the more sunshine you can allow into your home, the better. Going outside isn’t always an option, but take advantage of sunny days indoors by allowing the light in.

While I’ve personally never tried a light box, it’s on my wish list for this upcoming season because it seems like light boxes help a great deal for those with seasonal depression (or less serious cases of the winter blues). Apparently there are many different types (as well as something called a “dawn simulator” that’s used to wake you up in the morning) so be sure to do your research and figure out which one would be best for you. 

3. Make some art

I know art isn’t everyone’s thing, but if you’re feeling down, give it a try. It doesn’t have to be traditional art either – try writing, pottery, drawing, painting, or sewing. Anything creative that allows you to get in a flow for a bit can help improve your mental state.

4. Practice yoga

Though I’m not particularly good at yoga (I generally do it only once a week), making even a little bit of time practice always makes me feel better, especially on extra gloomy days. If yoga isn’t your thing, any type of movement or exercise will be beneficial. 

5. Make plans and stay connected

When I’m feeling down, the last thing I want to do is be around people. But I’ve discovered that it’s often what my mind needs when I’m feeling down. I don’t enjoy going out in the cold, but indoor activities can work, too (as long as you take proper precautions). If you can’t be physically with someone else, a quick phone call or video chat can also help when you’re battling the blues.

There are many options to explore if you’re struggling during the darker days, but hopefully some of these suggestions will help. If you find yourself suffering a great deal, it’s always good to seek out professional help (whether in the form of therapy or from your doctor). And if you’re struggling now, know that you’re not alone; it’s perfectly normal to experience down days during periods of change. Keep in mind that, even when it doesn’t seem like it, the difficult darkness will pass. Seasons always change, and the way you feel will change, too.

In today’s fast-paced world, it’s no surprise with the amount of stress present in so many lives. Persistent stress triggers the amount of cortisol released into our body. Cortisol is responsible for the fight-or-flight response, but chronic levels can take a toll on our health and well-being. There are many natural practical ways to lower cortisol and restore balance to our bodies for a more stabilized life!

Understanding Cortisol:

Cortisol is a stress hormone produced by the adrenal glands in response to stress signals in the brain. This hormone is known as the “flight-or-fight” hormone, which is involved in releasing energy stores, increasing heart rate and redirecting blood flow. If cortisol is constantly elevated, it can wreak havoc on the body.

What is the Impact of High Cortisol?

Over time, prolonged exposure to high cortisol levels can lead to very serious health issues. Elevated levels have been linked to hypertension, which placed strain on the cardiovascular system and increases the risk of heart attack and stroke. It can also contribute to insulin resistance, which can ultimately lead to type 2 diabetes.

Cortisol helps us wake up in the morning, but chronic stress can disrupt this pattern. This can lead to irregular sleep schedules or problems falling asleep. By implementing strategies to lower cortisol levels, you can positively impact your physical and mental health.

Tip 1: Prioritizing Sleep

Quality sleep plays a significant role in cortisol regulation. Establishing a consistent sleep routine, creating a comfortable sleep environment, and limiting screen time can all improve sleep quality. Get into a pre-sleep relaxing routine such as taking a warm bath, listening to a meditation, or reading.

Tip 2: Stress Management Techniques

Activities such as meditation, stretching and deep breathing can alleviate stress and enhance a calm state. All of these practices signal to the body that it is ok to relax, which will reduce cortisol production.

Tip 3: Regular Exercise

Engaging in regular physical activity will naturally reduce cortisol levels. Exercise will decrease stress, but also enhance mood. The best way to maintain levels are to switch the type of exercises you do. Perhaps one or two days you can do barre or Pilates, while the other few days are cardio with weights. Keep in mind that doing a lot of H.I.I.T. may increase cortisol levels in our bodies.

Tip 4: Incorporating Mindfulness Practices

Mindfulness techniques such as yoga can have a positive impact on cortisol levels. This encourages present moment practice, which will reduce the body’s stress. Another practice is mindfulness meditation, which involves focusing on the breath and observing thoughts without judgement.

Tip 5: Nutrition Strategies

A balanced and nutritious diet can contribute to cortisol control. Focus on fruits, vegetables, lean proteins , and whole grains. Incorporating Omega-3 fatty acids, which are found In fish and chia seeds, an also have anti-inflammatory effects on the body reducing cortisol levels.

Cortisol management is a holistic endeavor that encompasses physical, mental and emotional health. By prioritizing sleep, stress management, nutrition and exercise, you will be so much better suited to handle cortisol levels and lead a much more balanced life.

Is it ok to have drinks in moderation and also be a fitness fan? Surprise…the answer is YES! Researchers have found a link between people with high fitness levels and those who enjoy a refreshing alcoholic beverage.

When choosing a low calorie alcoholic drink, skip those mixed with simple sugar. Aim for vodka seltzers and/or tequila and lime. If you are trying to lose weight, decreasing the amount of calories consumed from alcohol can be extremely effective. Alcohol can be consumed in moderation with a balanced diet.

So what are the 5 drinks with the least amount of calories? Here they are:

  1. Vodka Seltzer- This is a classic drink made by combining vodka with unflavored seltzer or club soda. There is only about 133 calories in a 7.5 oz serving! Need more flavor? Try garnishing with cucumber or mint OR add a little lemon/lime juice. Alternatively, a flavored seltzer and/or sparkling water may just do the trick!
  2. White Wine-White wine generally has less calories than red. Typically, it contains about 123 calories in a 5 oz serving. There are so many varieties to try including chardonnay, sauvignon blanc, pinot grigio, and riesling. Bored of plain wine? Add some fresh fruit or mix in some sparkling water/seltzer to make a spritzer.
  3. Tequila with Lime- This is one of the easiest cocktails to make and the lowest in calories! A shot of tequila with a lime wedge has only about 99 calories. Is drinking tequila straight not for you? Try mixing in some club soda or mint for a low-calorie cocktail.
  4. Dry martini-A classic dry martini consists of gin and vermouth and is usually topped with olives. There is typically 2.5 oz. of gin and 0.5 oz of vermouth. This packs a low 185 calories! Want to decrease the olive calories? Opt for some orange bitters or a lemon wedge.
  5. Paloma-A paloma is made with tequila, lime juice, grapefruit juice, and club soda. Some recipes call for extra sugar, but you can decrease the sugar content by skipping this or using a natural sweetener instead. Here is one I LOVE with the link below :

There are multiple ways you can decrease the calorie content of your favorite alcoholic beverages. One way is to make your own drinks instead of using premade mixers, which tend to have high sugar and chemical contents. Instead of using sugar or syrup, opt for fresh herbs or the simple syrup pictured above. Try using more ice, sparkling water/seltzer and LESS soda or juice.

Regardless of whether you are trying to lose weight, alcohol should only be enjoyed in moderation as part of a healthy well-rounded diet.

DISCLOSURE: This post contains affiliate links. This means, at no extra cost to you, we make a small commission if you purchase a product through these links. As an amazon associate I earn from qualifying purchases. This helps to support CGM Fitness. Thank you!

Feeling tired and sluggish in the middle of your workday? Do you find yourself struggling to stay focused after lunch? So many of us experience this mid-day slump on a day to day basis. The great news is there are many strategies we can use to overcome this slump and power through our workday. Let’s explore some of these strategies here!

Move Your Body

Sometimes your body just needs some mid-day movement! Going for a quick walk after lunch may just give you that boost of energy you need to stay strong! Not in a walking mood? Do 1/2 of a 25 min recording and finish the rest later! Or just do the warm-up section of it, and complete the rest of the exercises after work.

Practice Mindfulness

The mid-day slump is often caused by stress and anxiety. Practicing deep-breathing, meditation, and EFT tapping are all techniques to reduce stress and increase focus. Bring your attention to your breathing and let your thoughts come and go. You will probably feel MUCH more refreshed after a couple minutes of deep-breathing.

Hydrate and Optimize Digestion

Sometimes your body needs extra nutrients. Having a nutritious snack may just be what you need to give you the boost of energy to keep going strong. Instead of reaching for sugary snack or caffeine, opt for snacks high in fiber an protein. Nuts, seeds, veggies and hummus, apples and nut butter, are all great examples. These will provide sustained energy to help feel more alert.


Taking a few minutes to chat with a friend over the phone or a co-worker can definitely improve your mood and energy levels. Catch up with a family member and find out what is going on in their lives. Share a funny story with a co-worker to build better working relationships and lighten up your mood.

Prioritize Tasks

It is important to focus on the the most important and trying tasks when you have the most energy. Try to tackle the most difficult tasks at the start of the day and leave easier tasks towards day’s end. If after doing one of the tips above you feel you have more energy, try to add in some more challenging tasks! Continue on in this pattern until you can find your groove!

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