52 Fridays…Time Flies!

Happy Friday, Friends! It’s that time of week again already. If you haven’t joined us yet for 52 Fridays, today is the perfect time to begin!

Grab your journal, a favorite pen, a calming beverage…find a few quiet moments and ease into a comfy place.

I have such a hard time believing we are three Fridays into 2018 already…how is that possible? Where in the world is the pause button? The concept of time is something I struggle with again and again, so I thought I’d look deeper today.

I cracked open my planner and the proof was right there…in the day-to-day busyness. I am continually reminded if I don’t make a conscious effort to schedule time for ME, it doesn’t happen. I’m digging into this with my journal today…

So there’s our quote for the week.

Let this idea soak in, turn it over in your mind. Close your eyes and breathe. What does it mean for you? How will you let this idea shape the rest of today? Or the weekend? The rest of this month? How will you navigate the remainder of 2018?

Remember, you’re in the pilot’s seat!

Win-It Wednesday Nalu Float Winner

Happy Win-It Wednesday, Friends! I want to thank each of you who entered, for sharing ways you find your peace or calm…I felt more relaxed just reading them! You all employ some great techniques to decompress; thanks for sharing!

In case you missed it, I recently shared my sensory deprivation float tank experience at Nalu Float and Healing Center here.

I want to take this opportunity to thank owner Jon Maki for generously partnering with FIT BFFs by providing the 60 minute float session for our lucky local winner!

And the winner is…

Hope

Congratulations, Hope! I will contact you with the details you’ll need to schedule and redeem your 60 minute float!

Remember, if you didn’t win, you still have the wonderful opportunity to visit this beautiful place of peace and calm right here in our Rochester community any time!

Friends, make sure you take a few minutes out of your busy schedule today (and every day) to indulge in some peace or calm…one more way we can all put our Best Foot Forward!

Win-It Weekend-Nalu Float Session

Friends, last month I shared my sensory deprivation float tank experience at Nalu Float and Healing Center here.

I’ve got some exciting news for you! FIT BFFs and Nalu have once again partnered to put one lucky, local (Rochester, MN area) giveaway winner into a 60 minute float session of tranquility and peacefulness! Many thanks to owner Jon Maki for making this giveaway possible!

Are you feeling lucky, Friends? I hope so! Wondering how to win? It’s easy, simply leave a comment below mentioning one way you find your peace or calm to fend off the everyday chaos.

Entries will be accepted between now and Tuesday, January 16th, midnight central time. One lucky winner will be randomly drawn and announced on Win-It Wednesday, January 17th.

Please note, this giveaway is for local Rochester, MN and surrounding area residents only…if you will not be in the Rochester area to redeem, please don’t enter.

I’ll be back Wednesday to announce the lucky winner who will be climbing in…

If you can’t wait to find out if you’ve won, stop by the Nalu Float and Healing Center website for details on how you can schedule an appointment for some soulful stillness!

52 Fridays…a Happy Soul

Friends, I have no idea what happened…a minute ago it was Monday and somehow it’s already time for 52 Fridays-Week 2! I admit, I ran the full length of this week. Between making my workouts a priority, tying up all sorts of miscellaneous loose ends, filling some of my etsy shop orders and doing some long-range lesson planning for a class I teach…the week got completely away from me. But that’s all about to change! My guys left early this morning to do something they absolutely LOVE…ice fishing near the Canadian border for four. whole. days!!! Do you know what that means for me?!? Yup, FOUR DAYS of ME TIME!!!

This brings me to our 52 Fridays theme for the week. Pull out those shiny new, barely broken-in journals, find a quiet spot, a few uninterrupted moments for yourself and get comfortable. Here’s your thought to ponder…

Do you make time for what makes you truly happy? Do you even remember what it is that makes your soul smile? Pause to reflect on what these things are, then consider making some plans to do them more often or to simply get back to doing them at all. Here’s a little secret I’ve learned…in this hectic day and age, our souls are not on happy autopilot; we must be intentional about nourishing them. Is a happy soul high on your list of priorities? If so, what will you do to make this happen? How soon can you start?

Once you’re done and if you feel comfortable, leave a comment below sharing one thing your soul is looking forward to doing more often.

Now if you’ll excuse me, I need to get my plan in order because I know how quickly these four days are going to fly!

Just the Beginning…52 Fridays!

Friends, I am embarking on a bold new year-long adventure today! I’ve decided to walk down my unique path of self discovery.

But rather than keep this to myself, I thought I’d invite you all to join me. There is no need to sign up…just show up every Friday in 2018. If you miss one here or there, no sweat, do what you can. I’m calling this exploration 52 Fridays. Work on it right away, or wait for the weekend; make it something to savor.

All you need is a blank journal or notebook. That’s all! But you may choose to have your favorite pen, beverage (wine is fine…not judging and it may help!), and fuzzy socks are always cozy lol! Note: you may want to place yourself in a quiet, interruption-free zone.

So how well do you know your inner self? I mean really know who you are deep down, and what makes you tick? Here’s what we’ll do. Start each week with a couple deep breaths to calm and center yourself.

I will provide a simple quote designed to encourage you to do a little digging below the surface. Read the quote a couple times, sit with it a while. Close your eyes and breathe the words in and out. When thoughts pop up, run with them. Spend just 5-10 minutes ingesting the idea and letting whatever comes to mind pour out onto your page.

If you are anything like me, you’ll often be astounded by what you’ve written. And that, my friends, is self discovery! Once you delve within, you can unleash all sorts of new feelings…happiness, clarity, joy, fulfillment and, perhaps, enlightenment!

Are you ready to get started?

Jot the quote down at the top of your page and consider what you want out of 2018 or beyond. Don’t limit yourself. Don’t hold back. You are all set to begin finding where this journey might take you!

Now if you’ll excuse me, I’m grabbing my favorite Paper Mate pen and my journal…here goes!

 

Have You Heard of PaperBackSwap?

Friends, do you love to read? Well I do, and I’m about to let you in on one of my best-kept secrets! I came upon a website several years ago that has allowed me to swap books I’ve read and no longer wish to keep for books I really want. PaperBackSwap is a kind of trading post for book lovers!

It’s simple, yet genius…here’s how it works:

  • List books you wish to swap.
  • When one of your books is requested, you pay postage to mail it to the recipient.
  • In exchange, you receive a book credit (2 if you are swapping an audio book).
  • Use that credit in exchange for one of over 1,780,000 books currently available. The sender pays for the postage to ship to you.
  • Don’t see the title you’re looking for? Add it to your wish list!
  • Best of all…the books you receive are yours to keep, or swap again after reading!

I could spend hours on that website looking at available titles. It’s just like shopping in a bookstore, only from the comfort of your home. I’ve really enjoyed finding unique books that interest me. Here are just a few I have swapped for with FIT BFFs in mind…

I’ve had a great time listing and mailing many of my family’s books they no longer wanted, turning them into books we do! It’s truly fun for the whole family, and, it’s like upcycling an entire library!

What’s more, PaperBackSwap isn’t limited to paperbacks, they also swap hardcovers and audio books…how cool is that?!?

Please note, audio books require two book credits.

Everyone begins as an A La Carte member, which means you would be charged 49 cents per swap. If you’d like an even better deal, join as a Limited Member and make your first 30 swaps for free. Join as a Standard Member and receive unlimited free swaps. Trust me when I tell you, it’s worth it!

Just when I thought I couldn’t love this website more, I learned PaperBackSwap offers both school and military donation programs. Love it!

Do you have books collecting dust at your house? Gather them up, dust them off and begin turning your unwanted books into an entirely new-to-you library; it’s FUN!

Stop over to PaperBackSwap and take a good look around. If you’re looking for new motivation, inspiration or your next great read, I guarantee you’ll find it!

Now if you’ll excuse me, I’ve got some treasure hunting of my own to do over there!

Win-It Wednesday New Year’s Edition

Happy New Year, Friends! I was truly inspired by each of your giveaway entry comments…your goals and intentions for 2018 motivate me to move forward with similar aspirations. It’s time to announce the lucky winners for today’s New Year’s Win-It Wednesday!

I want to take this opportunity to thank each of our generous contributors; many thanks to our friends at:

Aurorae Yoga

OOFOS

Rollga

 

Our lucky winners are…

Aurorae Yoga mat, tote & beach towel: Tina 

OOFOS choice of one pair recovery footwear: Julie 

Black & Gold Mix Rollga Warrior foam roller: Missy

Congratulations, Winners! I will email each of you for contact information. Many thanks to all who entered.

Now let’s all get with it, to put in the strong work and focus it will take to achieve our goals and intentions for 2018…putting out Best Foot Forward!

2017 in Review

I need to let you in on a little secret, Friends! When you say or write something, you can actually speak it right into existence. Here’s what I mean…a year ago today, I posted this photo…

And do you know what? 2017 ended up being nothing short of ridiculously amazing! I had some basic notions of what I wanted out of the year, set some intentions/goals and went for it. Much of what I aimed to accomplish focused on fitness and wellness, while spending time with friends and family. Here’s just a peek into my year…

January was a snowy one, so much of my activity revolved around it…

 

But back indoors where it was warm, I spent some time rock climbing and doing yoga with my mentee…

 

And there was a fun little racquet sport date night Eric and I took a whack at…

February brought more snow, so I was right back out there in it!

 

And took a little trip to Wisconsin for some cousin hiking, walking and roller skating fun!

 

March rolled around quickly and found me hiking, biking…

 

And more biking…

And back to Wisconsin for more fun cousin time because I just can’t ever get enough!

And as April rolls around, here’s where all heck breaks loose and the year completely gets away from me in a ridiculously amazing way! Like Spring Break in Colorado where we hiked a mountain and got the rockstar tour of Rocky Mountain National Park from an expert!

Managed to get a bucket list workout at Red Rocks Amphitheater crossed off while we were out there…

Soon it was time to head back home because I had a flight to catch for Portland, headed up to Hood River to mark Multnoma Falls and the PCT Bridge of the Gods off my bucket list with glorious cousin time!

 

And while we were there, I had some of the most life-changing yoga classes at Flow. Just putting this out there…I dream of taking my yoga teaching certification there someday!

May was here before I knew it and the weather was extraordinary for lots of walks, biking and hiking!

Next think I know, I’ve blinked and it’s June! I spent an entire year with my mentee and it’s time to graduate from Bolder Options, but not before one last hard core Pound class on the Plaza!

 

Next thing I know, I’ve hit the open road, helping move my cousin and pups to the Florida Keys!

 

And I sure would have loved to stay longer, but I flew home just in time to leave for our annual family vacation on the lake. I don’t know how, but that week goes faster every year!

 

And just how did this happen? I somehow blinked and it’s already the Fourth of July; I’m back in Wisconsin again!

 

But not for long and we’re back home and hitting the bike trails of southern Minnesota…

  

And I’m so glad I got that family time because next thing I knew, I was flying to Vegas for the IDEA World Fitness Convention/Blogfest where I met some fantastic people and learned more than I ever thought possible!

  

And just like that, I’m back home and it’s August! But I’m not there long because I’ve got a fun girls’ getaway planned with my friend Summer Katie. We may have set a record on waterfall hikes along Minnesota’s North Shore and into Canada!

  

And just as that trek comes to a close, I’m right back up there in the same territory with my mentee on a once-in-a-lifetime outdoor adventure through the Boundary Waters Canoe Area with new friends. Thanks, Bolder Options and Quetico Foundation!

 

I came home just in time to Walk to End Alzheimer’s.

Soon it was September and life slowed down. So much so, I found myself on a fall getaway where I had a resort’s beach all to myself as I tagged along on Eric’s work seminar. Never have I experienced more tranquility than alone on the sand and docks. It was a time of great reflection and introspection.

 

October allowed me to continue with the calm and relaxation, embracing the beauty of the outdoors…

  

November tried to copy October’s weather so I was able to get many miles of hiking in before winter arrived…

  

 I managed to sneak in some last minute yardwork just before December when I got one more great hike in.

 

Winter has definitely hit now with temps below zero. I’m so thankful I have this place to call home…

I’m sure glad I decided 2017 would be so great. It was phenomenal! And with the new year mere hours away, I figured I would speak my hopes right into existence again…

Win-It New Years Edition

Happy Win-It New Years Edition, Friends! I’d like to take this opportunity to thank each and every one of you for stopping by this year and hanging out with me at the blog! I’m so grateful to have partnered with some wonderful companies this year, which have enabled me to share a few of my favorite fitness/wellness products in the industry with you.

You may remember me mentioning them in past reviews, like how my love of yoga has been greatly enhanced by my friends at Aurorae…

 

You might recall how OOFOS recovery footwear has been my constant comfort companion throughout my running/marathon days and now well into my injury recovery and osteoarthritis management…

 

And who remembers my friend Tim of Rollga…the co-creator of my favorite foam roller I keep running into when I’m in dire need of relief? 

 

Friends, are you feeling lucky this New Year’s Weekend? I hope so, because there are some great prizes to be won from these fantastic companies…want to know what you could win?

The kind folks at Aurorae have generously contributed a prize pack including a yoga mat, tote and towel for one lucky winner. This will surely illuminate your life…namaste!

 

Those generous folks at OOFOS have decided one lucky reader will win a pair of OOFOS of their choice! Remember, they offer many options so my Midwestern readers in the deepfreeze may like OOcloogs or OOmgs over the OOlalas right now. The lucky OOFOS winner will, no doubt, feel the OO!

And last, but far from least, these genius, generous developers of Rollga would like to help one lucky winner find their Ahh-Spot with the awesome black and gold Rollga foam roller in Taggart’s hand on the right…you’ll be so grateful to roll with it!

Many, many thanks to my friends at Aurorae, OOFOS and Rollga for partnering with FIT BFFs for this fun!

Wondering how to win? To enter, simply leave a comment below mentioning what goal or intention you plan to work toward in 2018. That’s it!

Entries will be accepted between now and Tuesday, January 3rd, midnight central time. Three lucky winners will be randomly drawn and announced on Win-It Wednesday, January 4th.

Please note, this giveaway is open to US residents only. And remember, you can’t win if you don’t enter, so do it right away!

Good luck!!!

 

 

Set Your Intention with Aurorae

Friends, we did it…we survived the hustle and bustle of Christmas! If you’ve stopped by in the past few weeks, you may have caught one or more of my Carla’s Favorite Things posts where I highlighted some of my favorite products for gift-giving suggestions. I purposely held off on one more because this idea is for YOU!

Perhaps you didn’t get quite what you’d hoped for for Christmas. Or maybe (especially if you usually end up buying for yourself) you didn’t get much of anything…this recommendation is just for you! And the timing couldn’t be more perfect!

Those of you who’ve been following me for a while know I LOVE the mindfulness practice of yoga.

If you’ve seen posts on my Facebook page, you know I have a couple pretty sweet yoga mats that come nearly everywhere with me, like to the pool…

Last year, Aurorae generously provided me with a yoga mat, bag and towel in exchange for a review. You can check out what I thought about them here.

That was over a year ago, and that towel still goes on vacation with me because it takes up such little space in my suitcase and dries super quickly!

I have two of Aurorae’s amazing quality mats now and love taking them anywhere I go for a few moments of peaceful retreat…whether it’s here in my neighborhood…

Or on a soulful getaway…

The luxury thickness and durability stand up again and again wherever I go!

As I stated earlier, the timing could not be more perfect for you to peruse the many products on Aurorae’s website.

Why? Now that the demands of the shopping, wrapping, decorating, card writing, mailing, baking, parties and sleeplessness have subsided, it’s time to come back to you. To set an intention for yourself in the new year. If you already practice yoga, a new mat, bag or towel might be just the treat you need to return to your mat with renewed enthusiasm.

Or perhaps you’re brand new to yoga; Aurorae has everything you need!

Setting a new intention with Aurorae is a wonderful way to put your Best Foot Forward in 2018!

Namaste.