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Health & Nutrition

Making All Parts of Travel Easeful, FUN and Healthy {Part 2}

Posted on Jul 22, 2017 in Blog, Exercise & Fitness, General, Health & Nutrition, Joy & Happiness, Self-Care, Stress Reduction | 0 comments

On my last blog, I talked about easeful trip preparation, for you and your business, and how to transition and get settled more easily when you return home.  

In this blog, I’ll be focusing on your physical health while traveling. 

For me, my physical health (which impacts my mental and emotional health) is affected hugely by 3 things when traveling – Food, Hydration, Supplementation.  Here are my favorite tips and strategies for feeling both healthy during and after travel. 

1.  Pack Your Own Food and / or Snacks

Best case scenario – if I have time, I’ll pack my own salad or go to Whole Foods (if on the way to the airport) and grab a takeaway salad.  This isn’t always feasible (like only 20% of the time) so at the very least I pack unsalted nuts, nutrition bars, a piece of fruit, a bag of baby carrots and raw chocolate. 

2.  Hydrate Like Crazy!

Drinking water during the flight (and avoiding coffee, soda and alcohol) is one of the best ways to combat travel stress, fatigue and jet lag.  These are the 3 ways I hydrate to keep it interesting, feel great and have something to look forward to on long flights (I’m ALL about having things to look forward to :)

~ Hydrate With Superfoods

One of my favorite ways to hydrate is to buy the biggest bottle of water I can find (after I go through security) and add in Amazing Grass’ Green SuperFood Cacao Chocolate Infusion and 4-6 drops of Sweet Leaf’s English Toffee Liquid Stevia*.  

I then instantly have a full bottle of cold, refreshing, heavenly goodness.  Seriously, drinking this mixture makes me feel SO good during the flight (it’s usually gone in an hour). 

*Both are pictured above and available at Whole Foods or Amazon.

~ Hydrate with Herbal Tea

Strangely, US airlines don’t seem to have herbal tea onboard (international flights do carry green tea), so pack 2-3 herbal tea bags and a glass tea tumbler.  I use our Sacred Lotus Love Tea Tumblers, of course :)  Simply ask the flight attendant to fill your Tea Tumbler with hot water – they don’t mind, when you ask really nicely. 

~ Hydrate with Sparkling Water

 When asked what I want to drink – I always ask for sparkling water.  Another way to keep you drinks healthy…and interesting. 

3.  Bring Treats

If you’ve done my SexyFit™ Nutrition Challenge, you’ll know that I’m a huge believer in having healthy treats to look forward to, and that I also really promote “filling the void”.  Limited options, hunger and boredom make it easier to succumb to eating unhealthy food – so bring your own healthy treats to replace that bag of snack cookies.   My favorites?  Raw Chocolate and Raw Chocolate Macaroons – traveling or not.

4.  Avoid / Minimize

These are pretty obvious (all are dehydrating), but avoid or minimize the following as they make travel fatigue and recovery worse:

  • Salt, Sugar + White Carbs
  • Caffeine + Alcohol
  • Sauces + Desserts
  • Most airplane snacks

5.  Maximize

Airports ARE getting much better these days with choices for healthy options.  I try to eat these foods:

  • Salads + Healthy Dressings
  • Raw Veggies + Greens
  • Raw Nuts + Fruit
  • Healthy Proteins + Low Glycemic Carbs

 6.  Boost Your Immune System

I never go a day without my USANA supplements, but when I know I’ll be traveling, I add in extra Proflavanol C100 (USANA’s Grapeseed Extract and Vit C) 2 days before, during and 2 days after, to naturally boost my immune system.

7.  Never Beat Yourself Up

What fully intend to eat great while traveling, and even pack healthy snacks…but you miss a connecting flight, end up sleeping overnight in a Singapore airport b/c all the hotels are booked, can’t find anything healthy to eat, are overtired, stressed and hangry?  And proceed to eat your way to from Singapore-Japan-USA?

I’ve been there, exactly, as a matter of fact – on a killer flight 4 years ago.  

So, what did I do?  I finally arrived at my destination, drank a huge glass of water, took my USANA MyHealthPak and extra Proflavanol C100 and went to bed.  The next morning, I got up, MOVED in natural light (ran for 20 min outside), ate a healthy breakfast high in protein, drank lots of water, kept my  blood sugar balanced the whole day by eating extra protein and greens, went to bed early and didn’t beat myself up over it.

It’s so important to remember that one day will not affect your overall health negatively; it’s what you do AFTER that matters most.  I love this question as it always helps me get back on track – “what would healthy person would do now?” Be gentle and nurturing with yourself during this one day, knowing that tomorrow you will be completely back on track and feeling great. 

And yes, Tips 1-6 do require a little more planning (packing snacks, herbal tea bags, tea tumbler, supplements), but they help ensure that you have healthy and interesting options (hunger and boredom will push you towards unhealthy food).  

And why not make your trip as enjoyable as possible – and something that you look forward to, even if it takes a little more work on the front end?

Preparation, Filling the Void and Not Beating Yourself Up if you DO have a less-than-healthy travel day, are all part of making travel really work for you.  These days, I love all parts of travel b/c I intentionally create the environment I want – healthy, ease-ful, interesting and pleasurable. 

Over to you! Did this resonate? Do personally use any of the above tips already? What other travel tips help you wander the world with ease, enjoyment and health?  What non-negotiable health strategies that make all the difference for you?

Share here – the best insights happen in the comments when we share our ideas and strategies. I personally read every single comment and and always respond – I love to hear.

Miss Part 1?  Click here to read.

Lots of love,

Carmen Marshall

PS Think someone would benefit from this blog? Sharable icons on the left :)

 

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Making All Parts of Travel Easeful, FUN and Healthy {Part 1}

Posted on Jul 1, 2017 in Blog, Business Advice, General, Health & Nutrition, Joy & Happiness, Personal Development, Self-Care, Stress Reduction | 2 comments


I LOVE travel – everything about it. Well, almost everything.  NOT the packing, unpacking…and the extra effort it takes to stay healthy.

So, when I started living around the world six years ago, and knowing I was going to be doing a lot of travel, by choice, I decided that I was going to make even the UN-FUN parts of travel…enjoyable, ease-ful and healthy.

Note:  I’ve written this as 2-part blog so it’s easy to digest and put into action. Today, I’ll give you my favorite strategies for easeful preparing + packing, for your business, and for you when you return home.  On my next blog I’ll dive into how to stay physically and emotionally healthy while traveling.

1.  Eliminate the “Shoot – I forgot my ____, again!”

Keep a running “My Travel List” of the things you typically forget AND what you think of while on trips (this last trip I was wishing  I’d brought my little wooden lemon reamer for lemon water in the am!). Have at least 2 lists as they require different packing strategies:

  • My Travel List – Business
  • My Travel List – Vacation

What’s my favorite App for this?  I use Reminders on my iPhone as it’s super easy to use (example shown above) and I continually add to my lists.

2.  Use Your Subconscious

A week before your trip, designate an area (corner of your bedroom, a chair or even a bed in a spare room) to start collecting things you know you’ll want or need on your trip.

Our subconscious works on our behalf 24/7 – it will think of items a whole week before – so you can employ it to your advantage. All kind of things will come to mind – books, food items, gifts, and those shoes you’ll need for _____ .

This simple strategy helps take the stress, pressure and anxiety out of packing at the last moment. I find I actually ENJOY packing when I spread it out over a week and let my subconscious do a good part of the work.

3.  Create Space BEFORE you leave home

Set up an “out of office” email auto responder to let your clients know you’re on vacation or a business trip. This makes your whole trip more easeful as you’re setting the correct expectations for your clients – that you won’t be available as quickly or readily as you normally are when in your office. This allows for flexibility and breathing room when traveling (which invariably you’ll need) and helps your clients feel included and know what to expect.

Here’s the one I just used for my trip to the US for 8 weeks.  Feel free use / customize for you in anyway:

Hello _____,

Thank you for reaching out! I will be traveling in the US from April 25 – June 23, so my email response may be a little slower than usual. I will get back to you as soon as possible though :)

If you need immediate assistance, please email my assistant at m@cm.com

If you have a USANA related question, please call customer care directly at _____.

Looking forward to connecting when I’m back in the office!

Lots of love,

Carmen xo

4.  Maximize Air Travel Time

I absolutely LOVE flying – the hours when I’m “between time and worlds”. No one can call me 😃, distractions are at a minimum (as long as you have you earphones in) – so I have incredibly focused time for planning, creating, writing, replying to emails and even getting my inbox managed etc.

I use my flying time, what I consider magical time, for creating and getting “caught up”.

5.  Upgrade Your Environment

Get a credit card that gives you air miles for every purchase, and use those miles for flight upgrades and airport lounges. (Some credit cards even give you a year’s membership to airport lounges). I use credit cards for everything*, not only b/c it’s easier for accounting / tax purposes, but just as importantly, so that my money and purchases are working for me, and I’m always collecting miles.

I use miles to upgrade to business / first class and use airport lounges so that I have the best places to work in (strong WIFI, power sources and a great work environment). Another reason I look forward now to ALL aspects of travel is knowing I’ll have a quieter work space AND access to good food (airport lounges almost always have healthy alternatives for snacks).

My two personal favorite credit cards for accruing air miles are: Chase’s United Mileage Club Visa Card (United Airlines + Partners miles only, but necessary to use in countries that don’t accept American Express such as Bali, and it includes a membership to United + Partner Airport Lounges) and both Gold + Platinum American Express Cards (you can put miles towards ANY airline, which I prefer….but some countries, like Bali, don’t accept American Express, so I’ve needed to use a Visa card instead).

Tip: I recently found out about this cool couple and their website which has some really great advice on choosing credit cards for miles: https://www.get.com/

*Very Important: I always, always pay my credit cards in full so that I am never incurring any interest charges. EVER.  Which is a very important part of creating wealth.  You want your money and purchases working for you, not for a credit card company.

6.  Extend Your Trip:

Obviously, extending your trip can definitely create more ease 😃, but what I mean in this example, is to PAD your travel period with 1 day before and 1 day after. This is one of the most important things you can do for your health, personal life AND your business.

For example, for my 8 week trip:

  • Flew to the mainland on April 25 and returned June 21.
  • Used April 24 to pack and organize myself.
  • Used June 22 to unpack and “land”.

Thus, my auto responder said that I was “out of the office” from April 24 – June 23, and I was.

I’ve been doing this for about 5 years (but it took me about 2 years before that to make it non-negotiable – don’t let it take you that long! :). It’s my secret weapon for making traveling both ease-ful and enjoyable. I use the day before to get packed, attend to all personal things and do minor business things that don’t cause more work (I don’t do anything major – i.e. meetings, coaching etc).

I then also give myself a FULL 24 hours after I return to unpack, get organized in my personal life, laundry, plan and the most important part – actually LAND in back in time and space.  If you travel across time zones and countries, this is even more important – to have a day for your body (and soul) to catch up.   

Okay – that’s it for Part 1…health focused Part 2 in the next blog!

Over to you! Did this resonate? Do personally use any of the above tips already? What other travel tips help you wander the world with ease, enjoyment and health?  What non-negotiable travel strategies that make all the difference for you?

Share here – the best insights happen in the comments when we share our ideas and strategies. I personally read every single comment and and always respond – I love to hear.

Lots of love,

Carmen Marshall
PS Think someone would benefit from this blog? Sharable icons on the left :)

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Your Non-Negotiables

Posted on Apr 29, 2017 in Blog, Business Advice, Health & Nutrition, Joy & Happiness, Manifesting, Personal Development | 2 comments

What are your ‘non-negotiables’ in life?

Getting away from them can cause us to not feel grounded, inspired or happy.  This week, I’m talking more about the things that have contributed to my not quite feeling myself lately.

What causes us to get away from them (even when we know they have worked)?

Watch + listen below for personal examples of me getting away from my own non-negotiables in Business, Health and Relationships and how I am getting re-aligned.

 

Get Back To Your Non-Negotiables

I love to create space for all of us to empower each other to do more of what we love, so over to you!

Do you have a similar story or example? Comment below as all of the best ah-ha’s and connection happens as we share our ideas :-)

Lots of Love,
Carmen Marshall
 
 
Know someone who would love this or could benefit from this concept? Share using the buttons on the left :-)

 

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Stay In Integrity With Yourself

Posted on Apr 1, 2017 in Blog, Business Advice, Health & Nutrition, Joy & Happiness, Manifesting, Personal Development | 2 comments

We all know how important it is to stay in integrity with others — this builds trust and relationships in both work and life. However, it’s equally (if not more) to stay in integrity with yourself. It breeds trust and confidence in yourself.

Watch + listen below for a personal example of my own where I pulled out all of the excuses in the world and how it impacted me.

 

Stay In Integrity With Yourself

I love to create space for all of us to empower each other to do more of what we love, so over to you!

Do you have a similar story or example? Comment below as all of the best ah-ha’s and connection happens as we share our ideas :-)

Lots of Love,
Carmen Marshall
 
 
Know someone who would love this or could benefit from this concept? Share using the buttons on the left :-)

 

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Why You Can’t Just “Fake It ‘Til You Make It”

Posted on Mar 18, 2017 in Blog, Business Advice, General, Health & Nutrition, Joy & Happiness, Manifesting, Personal Development | 3 comments

Weekly Action Plan Coaching with Carmen Marshall

We’ve all heard it before, but today I want to re-frame the phrase “fake it ’til you make it” into something you can actually use in business and in life because we all know deep down that faking it just feels inauthentic.

Instead of actually faking it, there’s a better way to build confidence and success so that you can see and feel changes you want to experience in your life by asking yourself a few simple, yet profound questions. Watch + listen more in this weeks’ vlog below.

 

Why You Can’t Just “Fake It ‘Till You Make It + 3 Questions Guaranteed To Change Your Life

I love to create space for all of us to empower each other to do more of what we love, so over to you!

Have you used any of these 3 questions before? Comment below as all of the best ah-ha’s and connection happens as we share our ideas :-)

PS: The book I reference is ‘Anam Cara’ by John O’Donohue.

Lots of Love,
Carmen Marshall

 

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14 Favorite Apps For Business + Lifestyle: Part 1

Posted on Feb 18, 2017 in Blog, Business Advice, General, Health & Nutrition, Personal Development | 11 comments

I’ve been a self-employed entrepreneur since the age of 27, so one of the questions I get asked all the time is “what do you use in your business to stay organized?” or “how do you keep your personal + business life separate?”

The truth is, I love my work so much that personal and business tend to mix. Don’t get me wrong, I definitely take time off and in order to not get overwhelmed or bogged down, I am really strict about self-care, exercise, and some down time/being in nature.

But, I do have some apps and programs that make my personal and business life much more streamlined and simplified. Check out the video where I show you the first 7 of my favorite apps, and then I’ll share the rest in the next blog; so stay tuned.

Video Part 1: 7 Favorite Apps For Business + Lifestyle

Over to you! Are there any I’m missing? Do you use other apps you just LOVE that simplify your life? Share in the comments below; I’m sure there are other entrepreneurs out there that would love to hear all of your tips, too!

**UPDATE: I’ve since changed over from OOVOO to Zoom for video conferencing and I LOVE it!**

Lots of Love,
Carmen Marshall

 

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Relax! And Let Your Best Ideas Come To You

Posted on Apr 1, 2016 in Blog, Business Advice, Exercise & Fitness, Health & Nutrition, Manifesting, Personal Development, Stress Reduction | 2 comments

Let Your Best Ideas Come To You

Do you ever wonder how some people seem to came up with amazing ideas, businesses or products? “How did he/she think of that idea, and then implement it?  Why didn’t I think of that (and DO it)?”

And, at the same time, have you ever noticed that when you really need to come up with an idea or solution, you just can’t? When you desperately need an answer, when you’re trying oh-so-hard to figure out something – a blog title, the perfect product to sell, a solution to a problem – your brain won’t act on demand?

Why is that?

 
Well, for all of the above, it’s the same reason. It’s why we can’t find an outfit we like for a party this weekend or tailored black pants for a presentation tomorrow, and yet can find 5 outfits and 5 pairs of black pants we love any other time, when we don’t really need them.

It’s why goals and dream boards don’t work if we continually fixate on them, rather than giving them room to breathe.

It’s why it’s hard to find a solution in an argument if we continually keep talking in circles, rather than taking a break for a few hours.

When the pressure is on and we’re tense, solutions can’t flow to us – we’re too wound up and impenetrable for an idea to come through.  It’s as if we have a force field around us – keeping out good ideas.  In contrast, when we’re relaxed, doing or thinking about something else, when we don’t need that cocktail dress or black pants and when we’re not fixated on the problem or desire, the solution simply “pops” into our mind.

I have found that love and being in a relaxed, non-resistant state (see my video) is the answer for almost everything – from extremes such as major life challenges, to minor things like the title of a blog (which I’m stuck on right now :)  And this same concept of non-resistance and putting the body into a relaxed state, is also how the best ideas can come in.

3 Ways Get Revolutionary Ideas To Magically Flow to You

 
Here are my favorite ways to get my creative juices flowing.  All 3 things “shut down” the thinking brain and involve a repetitive motion that quietens the conscious mind.  We think we need our thinking brain/conscious mind to find a solution, when in fact, it’s the exact opposite. We need to turn it off…and relax.

1.  Go For a Run or Jog

IMG_0209 (1)

…or any exercise that doesn’t require thinking and allows you to “space out”.  Interesting, team sports, a tennis game or even a dance class don’t work as well for this exercise, because your brain is actively involved during each of those.

So why does running/ jogging work?  Firstly, you usually start to feel really good about 10-15 min into the run when the endorphins start kicking in.  When you feel good (why I’m such a believer in doing what makes us happy as it quickly raises our vibration), you’re naturally in a relaxed / non-resistant state and everything flows better, including incoming ideas.

Secondly, the repetitive motion of running shuts down the thinking mind and allows the subconscious mind to start providing answers. It’s as if the conscious mind has to be sent to the back of the room so the subconscious mind can have room to dance freely at the front of the room.

At least 50% of my best ideas have come in while I’m running – ideas for my business, new products, programs, solutions to challenges, team building / leadership ideas.  So…of course I make sure I run at least once a week :))  It helps keeps me fit, healthy (part of my 3:2:1:1 exercise philosophy – 3 cardio, 2 weights, 1 mind-body-spirit, 1 day off), and feeling mentally and emotionally clear – which of course helps in all aspects of life as well.

Important:  You don’t have to run very fast – I only run between 30-40 min, 1-2 times per week, with music, and have a steady, but not super fast pace. Start with only 20 min if you’re new or just restarting exercise.

Action Steps:

  • Schedule a 30-40 min run or walk this week, in your calendar.  Block it out right now in your calendar and commit to trying it for 3 weeks in a row – especially if you’ve never done this before.
  • Run, jog (or walk) quickly enough to get the endorphins going and notice what magical ideas come in.  And how great you feel after, and how well your day – business and life.

Tip:  Yoga also works.  The poses help quieten our mind, we RELAX (non-resistant state) and then ideas can come in.

2.  Wash the Dishes or Take a Shower

Something we all do everyday – at least the shower part, if not dishes ?  Again, it’s the repetitive motion (washing dishes or ourselves), but also the repetitive SOUND and feeling of water that quiets the mind and puts us almost into a slightly trance/hypnotic state (you can wash dishes and get in and out of a shower on auto-pilot and have everything done without even “thinking” about it).

This is again when the best ideas can come in b/c we’re doing something that doesn’t require thinking or effort-ing.  With less effort-ing (important concept for life), our brain literally relaxes, we relax and ideas can flow in more easily.

Less Effort-ing + More Relaxing = Magical Ideas

(click to tweet it!)

Action Steps:

  • Don’t overthink this one.  Just shower or hand wash dishes as normal.
  • Let your mind wander as it wants, without forcing any ideas.
  • Simply notice what ideas come in and be curious. That’s all that is needed. Wait, Watch. Wonder.

3. Lay Down

Let Your Best Ideas Come To You

Ahhh…my other favorite ?  I’ve found this especially valuable for women b/c it relaxes our pelvis + womb – our center of power, creation and life-force.  I image this would work just as well for men though too – as it’s also your center of power, creation and life-force.

I use this not only for ideas, but for anytime I’m feeling stuck, stressed or upset…tired, frustrated…really for everything :)   It is one of the quickest ways to relax the body (putting us into a non-resistant state) – I can feel the tension drain from my body in 30 seconds.  It’s extremely effective and one of the easiest things we can do in any given day – both for health AND ideas.

Action Steps:

  • Try laying down on your bed, or floor, for 2-5 min (that’s all it takes) at least once a day – to get used to this habit.  Again, notice, be curious.  Wait, Watch, Wonder.
  • Use this super easy practice anytime you feel any negative emotion – stress, tiredness, overwhelm, stickiness…don’t let it’s simplicity fool you – it’s one of the most powerful exercises I’ve come across. Interestingly, the most simple things are usually the most effective.

Now What?

Screen Shot 2016-03-30 at 9.35.04 PM

When the idea comes in, you MUST ACT on it right away.  This is the most important thing. Most people never act on it – they wait a couple of days and then the energy is gone, they over think it and find all the potential challenges, they tell someone else, who shoots their idea down…and of course they then never do it.

When inspiration comes in, especially anything that makes you feel excited, expansive and energized, you HAVE to act on it right away. You must take at least one tiny little step towards it, that day.  It’s divine inspiration – and if you don’t act on it, the universe will find someone one else to flow the beautiful idea to and through.

Regard any hunch, intuition, or idea that gets your blood pumping as being absolutely precious.  Tony Robbins says, “Never leave the scene of an idea without taking action” which gives a practical twist to a spiritual concept.

Action Steps:

  • Write down any ideas that have come to you this week.
  • Notice especially the ones that make you feel energized, buzzy, excited and expansive.
  • For those, take an action step towards them that same day, and at least 5 days a week until you bring it into reality.

What about you?  How do your best ideas come in? Do you have any questions on the tips above? What do you do to make sure you take at least 1 action step towards them so that your great idea becomes a reality?

Comment here – I love to hear and anything you share or ask will help our whole community!

Eek – our Dance, Life Design + Breathwork Retreat in Thailand, June 2016 is only 2.5 months away! Read about all the details here.

Create A Life You Love Retreat 2017 – we’re pretty sure we’ll be having in Tulum, Mexico!  Get on the list here to be the first to know of our NEW destination and first dibs on registering.  This one will sell out quick!

Til our next blog…

Lots of love,

Carmen Marshall
 

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3 Ways to Cut Down on Caffeine (and enjoy it)

Posted on Mar 18, 2016 in Blog, Health & Nutrition, Self-Care | 4 comments

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I usually write mostly about personal development and leave Health + Wellness mostly for my online program, the SexyFit™ Nutrition Challenge.

However, I’ve been feeling the urge to write more equally about all petals of the Create A Life You Love umbrella – Health, Wealth, Purpose, Passion, Relationships, Creativity, Spirituality, Lifestyle + Adventure. And I’ve since I’ve been getting this question more recently, and dealing it with myself, the Health CALYL petal gets to be first :)

How I kicked my café latte addiction – personal recipes included:

 
Interestingly, two of the hardest habits for me to kick, have both revolved around caffeine: Diet Coke (I know, crazy huh?) and Coffee. After several attempts, I was finally able to quit Diet Coke in 2005. (Thank goodness – especially as there is no doubt as to how toxic artificial sweeteners are for our bodies).

Coffee, I was actually able to quit way before 2005, but it snuck back in (with minimal resistance) about 4 years ago when I was on an speaking tour in Australia + New Zealand. Café Lattes in both places were soo yummy….

And oh. so. addictive.

Since then, I’ve gone on and off coffee – completely eliminating it when I don’t feel as vibrant as I want, and bringing it back when I’m feeling healthy and good.

Rinse. Repeat.

For the past 6 months though, I’ve noticed that anytime I re-introduce coffee, even as a treat, it makes me feel unbalanced. I become dehydrated (of course – coffee dehydrates you), I’m hungrier than normal after a couple of hours (initially coffee curbs huger, but then it increases hunger), my digestive system feels off (stomach ache from the acid and feeling clogged up), I’m moodier…and I gain weight.

Grrr.

All things I would prefer not to happen.

The challenge is of course that I love, love, love café lattes. I adore the ritual of a morning or mid-afternoon latte – it’s a treat, it’s warm, it’s sweet and it has a slight “kick”. All things that are hard to give up – even when I know how it makes me feel afterwards. Which is always my litmus test of whether to continue anything: “How do I feel afterwards? not just in the moment”

So this is what I did. I replaced, instead of eliminated. I found things that I liked at least as much and in some cases, even better. If you too are struggling to stay off coffee, or even just want to reduce your caffeine intake – here are my 3 Go-Tos that helped me kick my coffee habit – all super easy + yummy.

1. Chai Tea Lattes

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My absolute favorite replacement! I actually like chai lattes even better than coffee lattes. Chai Tea isn’t actually caffeine free, as it contains black tea leaves, but it doesn’t have the same effect that coffee caffeine has on our bodies.

In part, that’s because there is only 30-65mg of caffeine in 8oz of black tea, versus 100-200 mg in the average cup of coffee. But it’s also because the caffeine in black tea works because of a component called “tannins”. Tannins have a calming effect on our nervous system. They also help caffeine to be absorbed much more slowly, which bypasses the caffeine “shock” and instead creates a calm, relaxed, yet focused state characteristic of alpha brain wave patterns.

No wonder I feel so good after my morning chai tea :)

And I still get to enjoy the ritual of a latte. My mug that takes two hands to hold, the hot creamy almond or coconut milk, the feeling like I’m treating myself and the satiety I feel after chai tea. I don’t even miss coffee lattes. And I love the exotic taste and scent of the indian spices cinnamon, cardamon and nutmeg – all contributing to a morning ritual and treat.

Most importantly, I feel great afterwards.

And…. I drink it almost every single morning.

Carmen’s Favorite Chai Tea Latte
Serves 1, double for 2

1 cup of unsweetened almond and/or coconut milk (add more water and less milk if you like a less rich latte)
1 bag of Chai Tea (Numi’s or Tazo’s Organic Chai Tea are my favorite brands)
1/4 tsp coconut nectar
3-4 drops of English Toffee Stevia to taste (Sweet Leaf* Brand)

Put everything in a sauce pan and slowly heat til first sign of simmer.

Cooking Tips:

Watch carefully so the milk doesn’t boil over. I stay in the kitchen and do other things (take my vitamins, fill my water bottle for the gym) while waiting for the milk to heat. Why? I’ve left the kitchen way too many times only to return to burnt milk all over my stovetop :)

If you like even more spice, add a dash of cinnamon, nutmeg, cardamon and/or vanilla.

Travel Tip:

I always carry a chai tea bag and stevia with me, so that if I’m at a cafe that doesn’t have unsweetened chai tea (just the bag or leaves, not a premix), I ask for a mug of hot almond milk with cinnamon, and use my own teabag and stevia. Yummy, hot chai latte – healthy, vibrant living, without deprivation, on the go ?

Stevia Tips:

Stevia is a natural, organic plant from South America and gives sweetness without calories and is low glycemic.

*Sweet Leaf is my favorite brand as it’s completely natural, made from the whole stevia plant and has no odd aftertaste. They have great natural flavors – English Toffee, Lemon Drop etc – in liquid format.

Stevia tastes great on it’s own in cold drinks, but in hot drinks, it tastes a little thin. Adding a tiny bit of coconut nector, sugar or syrup, fills out the taste for hot drinks – and still keeps it low-glycemic.

Health Tips:

If you are struggling with not having the peristalsis effect (going regularly to toilet) from coffee, chai tea will help in this area :)

If you do want to go caffeine free, Tazo has a great de-caffinated chai tea version.

2. Green Tea

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I sip on green tea throughout the morning, up until about 2pm, as any later that that, it seems to keep me awake at night. Green tea, like black tea, also contains caffeine, but only 24-45mg per 8 oz. And it also doesn’t have the same effect that caffeine from coffee has on me (weight gain, moodiness, hunger).

Why else do I love green tea? It’s considered much healthier than coffee, because of it’s many wellness benefits. It’s packed with powerful antioxidants called catechins, which have been shown to potentially inhibit the growth of some cancers. Research also suggests long-term consumption of green tea might help prevent obesity, type 2 diabetes, and coronary disease and has also been linked to both stress relief and clearer thinking.

Carmen’s Favorite Green Tea

Tea of Inquiry Full Leaf – by Republic of Tea

I absolutely adore this loose leaf green tea and have been drinking it for years. It’s medium strength, but not bitter, and has an earthy, robust flavor from the toasted brown rice pieces. You can usually find it at Whole Foods, but I order directly online from the company here.

If you prefer a bagged green tea, Tazo has some beautiful combination green teas. You can find them at Whole Foods, or order directly from the company online here.

Health Tip:

If you are struggling with headaches from coffee withdrawals – green tea seems to help even more than chai tea – even though it has less caffeine than black tea. During my SexyFit™ Nutrition Challenge I encourage clients to replace coffee because of the anti-inflammatory, weight loss, improved skin, sleep and energy levels they can experience in just 5 days, and green tea is one of the things that seems to help the most with any caffeine headache withdrawals withdrawals.

3. Sparkling Lemon Water

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Surprisingly, sparkling lemon water also helped me end my coffee latte love affair, simply because I often just feel like a “treat” – and a coffee latte would fill that gap. However, with the option of a re-freshing, lightly sweetened + sparkling lemon drink, I no longer crave a mid-afternoon coffee latte.

Of course, getting more water into our body always helps us feel better – it gives a natural energy boost, which also negates the desire for a coffee. Additionally, lemon not only helps detox the body, but also helps it be more alkaline (think anti-inflammatory versus an inflamed body) – all great things for overall health, and super easy to do with a simple, delicious drink.

Carmen’s Lemon Drop Sparkling Water

1/2 lemon (I like to use the pulp as well, but some people prefer it strained out)
1 cup sparkling water
4-6 drops (or to taste) of Lemon Drop Stevia (Sweet Leaf* Brand)

Ease + Enjoyment Tips:

Squeeze 2-3 lemons at a time and keep in a glass container in the fridge – the juice will last 4-5 days. Making a sparkling lemon drink is so much easier to do if you don’t have to squeeze the lemon every time. You will also have enough lemon for one of my favorite morning rituals – lemon, warm water and cayenne as soon as I wake up.

I use a large wine glass (see picture above) any time I drink sparkling water – it always feels more special and enjoyable.

In summary, why does replacing rather than eliminating work? Well, “nature abhors a vacuum” and it will fill a void, which is why people that quit smoking often gain weight (they start filling that void with food).

Just like dieting doesn’t work for me, neither does eliminating without replacing. Lifestyle changes have to be both sustainable and enjoyable. I’ve found that when I find or create something healthy + delicious that provides a ritual and/or pleasure – old habits (even my beloved café lattes) more easily fall away.
 

Don’t eliminate a bad habit, replace it. (Click To Tweet It!)

 
What about you? Which Go-To are you most excited to try? Do you have any questions for me, or for our community? Do you have any tips for replacing a coffee habit?

Click here to leave a comment – I absolutely love to hear your thoughts, suggestions and any questions you might have. Your questions and sharing are so valuable as they help our whole community :)

Love, love, love,

Carmen Marshall

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Life Coaching Meets the Wellness Industry

Posted on Jun 4, 2012 in Business Advice, Exercise & Fitness, Health & Nutrition, Personal Development | 2 comments

 

Want to learn the principles & practices every successful Wellness or Fitness Professional knows & uses?  Ever wished you could spend in-depth, intimate time with Wellness Professionals who walk their talk and have hugely successful health empires, to learn how they really did it?

2 Days Left to Register!  

This 4-pack tele-course, beautifully spread over a month for integration and implementation, is designed to get you up close and personal with three health professionals who are at the top of their game.  Each call will explore their “secrets” and processes for building a successful and congruent wellness empire.  Whether you’re a health coach, wellness practitioner, Zumba® teacher and/or growing a USANA business, these calls will help you BE and DO what it takes to have a rockin’ business.

And…with my discount code (CM104PACK), the 4 week program is ONLY $90, which brings it down to ONLY $22.50 per tele-seminar!  Pretty cool huh? Yoga studios in the OC charge that for a 1 hour class alone – so it’s an amazing price.  Each tele-seminar will get you into the HEAD of each woman and give you a chance to ask questions.  ANd…you’ll eave  each call with integration exercises to get you into ACTION.

I’ll be the guest speaker on Week 3.   Each call builds to the next, but don’t worry at all if you can’t be on all the calls.  Your registration (BEFORE the series starts) includes the recordings to listen to for a month…which I highly recommend doing.  Play the calls at least once again as you’ll pick up new principles and practices from each expert when you “re-listen”.

All the details: 

Life Coaching Meets The Fitness and Health Industry

If you are a fitness or health professional, you are on the front lines of the health revolution. Thank you. The world is literally dying for this breakthrough in self care and empowerment and you are leading the way. At Handel, we teach leaders to get the job done through developing and fulfilling their own heartfelt dreams. We also teach you how to bust through your own excuses and show others how to do the same. Harnessing the power of your body, mind and spirit, there is nothing you can’t do.

This 4-week teleseminar series is designed to teach you how to be the successful and inspiring fitness or health professional you desire to be. There are certain principles and practices every successful fitness or health professional knows and uses. You’ll be hearing from the best so you have every tool you need. President of Handel Group® Life Coaching, Laurie Gerber (and recent MTV True Life coach) will be joined by a group of experts: Patricia Moreno, Stephanie Levinson and Carmen Marshall to rock your world.

Four weeks starting Wednesday, June 6
2-3pm ET (11-12pm PT, 12-1 MT)
Led by: Laurie Gerber with special guests Carmen, Patricia and Stephanie.
Price: $100.00

SAVE $10 WITH PROMO CODE: CM104PACK

REGISTER HERE: http://www.handelgroup.com/events/life-coaching-meets-the-fitness-and-health-industry

Only 2 Days left!  You will want to register NOW, so that you receive your homework questions to “pre-frame” the course. Also, HG does not accept registrations after the first call starts – so make sure to register BEFORE.
 
“Hear” you soon!  I’m looking forward to answering your questions and helping you have the successful, vibrant and inspiring business and lifestyle that you want.
 
And this time I’ll be calling in from Maui!
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Healing Lessons from a Healing Retreat

Posted on Feb 28, 2012 in Health & Nutrition, Joy & Happiness, Self-Care, Stress Reduction | 0 comments

 

I just returned from ten days of utter bliss at the healing oasis Sanoviv.

Grateful.  Zenned Out.  Uber healthy.  Relaxed.

For the first five days, 24 of our coaches and I detoxed, learned and relaxed during our Wellness and Business Training Retreat.  I stayed an additional five days for my Sanoviv Integrative Health Assessment.  Since I don’t really care for the annual “check-ups” in the US, I go to Sanoviv every three years or so to decompress, do preventative health assessments and to learn any new cutting edge mind-body-spirit health tips that I can add to my coaching, programs and my own health routine.

So what did I learn from this visit to Sanoviv? How can you take the learnings at a healing oasis and use them in “real life”?  How am I doing the same?

#1 Healing Lesson :  The power of women coming to together and how important that is for the female psyche.

Since days of old, women’s circles have provided connection, support and expansion.  It was amazing to see the transformation of 24 women in five days – not just from our raw food detox (and the ability of colonic conversations to shave off weeks of getting to know someone), but also from the bonding and learning from each other.  Rosy cheeks, smiles, relaxed foreheads and eye-corners…some of the tell-tale signs of women enjoying and relaxing into themselves…and into each other’s company.

As a reformed (and still learning) “type A, driven business woman” who used to not make time for hanging out with women (what was I thinking?), I’ve become aware of how important it is to connect my women friends on a regular basis. How good it feels.  How time with girlfriends increases my vibration, which in turn naturally helps both my business and life balance. Connect, enjoy, relax and everything else works better. Novel concept.

How can you use this in “real” life, outside of a retreat, knowing that connecting with women can naturally increase your life and business success?

  • Create a Facebook group for a “tribe” of women that you resonate with. For your five best girlfriends.  Your book club.  Your friends at your Zumba® class.  We created a Feb 2012 Sanoviv Wellness and Business Retreat Facebook Group for our coaches and it’s been so fun to see the dialogue, support, pictures, recipes, questions and tips flying back and forth.
  • Start a once a month get together for women in your area with a different topic each time – Prosperity, Health, Communication, Purpose. Create a “tribe” of women that come together to learn from each other, relax, expand, laugh and play.
  • Join a women’s group that resonates with you. I just started a 5 Week Tantric Dance of the Feminine Power course with a group of women and I can’t believe how happy it’s making me feel.  How much that happiness has infused my business and life.

#2 Healing Lesson:  The power of stillness and how important it is for everyone’s psyche and nervous system.

With stress now being attributed as the one of the leading causes of disease, Sanoviv knows the necessity of creating stillness and downtime.  Curfew was at 9pm, which was welcomed since it’s amazing how tired one is after spending the day getting healthy!  Internet and cell phones are not allowed in the main areas or your room (cell phones don’t work and there is no wi-fi). We could use the internet in the business room if absolutely necessary, but were encouraged to disconnect as much as possible – which was SO healthy for me.   Stillness and non-busyness…hallelujah.

In addition, Sanoviv is built on the old Levi Strauss property and on/around an amazing energy vortex.  You can literally feel the calm, still, beautiful healing vibe throughout the property and buildings. Which is why, of course, Dr. Wentz, founder of my product partner USANA Health Sciences and Sanoviv, chose to build his healing oasis in this exact location.

The original Strauss house is still intact, sits on a third of the property and is home to  the meditation, psychology, piano, library and reading rooms.  As soon as you walk into the house, you feel enveloped by stillness, peace and an immediate quietening of the mind and spirit.  My favorite “part” of Sanoviv, I went there every day with a book and my journal. Staring out at the ocean, tucked up in a oversized chair, I allowed my body to relax into the stillness.  No talking, no where to get, nothing to solve…just to relax and be still.

How can do this in “real” life and not just at a retreat?

  • Have a self-professed no cell and internet day. (Or 1/2 a day if that is too scary).  Sundays work great for this.
  • Don’t think you HAVE to answer your cell if it rings. I never answer my cell unless the call has been scheduled or it’s a close friend/family member.  Even then, a lot of times I will let it go to voice mail so I can respond rather than “react”.
  • Take time to sit for 5-10 min on your own. Journal, breathe, read a book – whatever it is that calms you.  Every day, do something for 5-10 min that encourages you to be STILL.  To slow down.  To feel your breath, your body and and your feelings. This is one of the best things to do for your long term health and enjoyment of TODAY.  And remember, “if it’s not scheduled, it’s not real”- Marie Forleo.  So schedule your 5-10 min like an appointment. I guarantee that your physical health and your emotional spirit will thank you for it.  You will ENJOY your life more today. I know this from personal experience.
  • Slow down the things you usually rush. For example, when I return from any outing or errands, typically I’m rushing to get out of the car and get everything put away as fast as I can.  By the end of my whirling dervish ten minutes, I’m exhausted.  Try this…slow down the very thing that you’re rushing.  Imagine that you’re a “Zen Maven”.  Notice how much it relaxes your nervous system and that it creates enjoyment in the moment…which is what it is ALL about.

Well…that’s not all I learned, but this is as long as I want my blog to be today!  Stay tuned for more tips and Sanoviv recipes coming up….

Love in-depth nutrition and mind-body spirit wellness training? Join me for my SexyFit™ Spring Detox Online Nutrition Program. You’ll have access to all my best health and lifestyle training, coaching calls with me and an uber supportive group of like-minded women to cheer you on.

Register TODAY to secure your seat (we had 131 participants for our January challenge from five countries!)

Here’s all the info:

March Spring Detox SexyFit™ Nutrition Program

Getting You Healthy, Happy and Vibrant in 30 Days!

Sunday, March 11 – Monday, April 9th (Prep Week starts March 3rd)

  • Registration Ends Tuesday, Feb 28th at midnight
  • Lose 5-15 lbs in 30 days, healthily and learn a lifestyle that you can do for life.
  • All Participants with receive their login details on Saturday, March 3rd to start with Goal Setting and Prep Week content.  The full 30-Day Program starts Sunday, March 11 with our prep call, and the 5 Day RESET Cleanse will start on Monday, March 12th.
  • Read the 30-Day Program Details here
  • Space is Limited, so register now.

Be Happy….Be Vibrant…

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