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Dancin in the kitchen! My favorite indoor workout

My No-Excuses Workout at home during a blizzard!
Part of our back-to-basics series – revisiting the nuts & bolts of getting healthy & fit

lori-workoutkitchenYesterday in the aftermath of a snowstorm, I decided to stay in to work out. Somehow bundling up, shoveling out, and trudging out in the snow didn’t appeal at 6 am. So instead I put on the all-time new favorite play list and for 30 min I rocked it in the kitchen. It was a fun and great workout.

Jumping jacks, high knees, high kicks, speed skaters, lunges, squats, boxing footwork & jabs, my own version of Dirty Dancing footwork, shaking my booty and stepin it out (and a whole lot more of lunging and squatting). It was a great work out and I incorporated total body because I worked on getting my heart rate up and used weights intermittently for strength.

Most importantly, it really was fun. I think I perfected a few dance moves that will serve me well in my future dates when I take it to the dance floor in public! (Lucky guys who get to dance with me.) 😉 Read more

What losing 200+ lbs has taught me

LoriSchaefer-IntheEquation-TheBiggestLoser-Jan2015What if you knew in the deepest part of your gut that you could do ANYTHING you set your mind to? That you have within you the power and the potential to make your biggest, hairiest, most audacious goal come true?!

One year ago today, I had the distinct privilege to share my at-home transformation story on NBC TV’s The Biggest Loser Season 16 live finale. It was an incredible experience — thrilling, scary, enlightening, empowering, totally awesome! I’ve blogged about it here, and you can watch the video clip here.

Today, as I reflect on that amazing night one year ago, I am struck by what I have learned throughout this personal transformation journey that continues to serve me today. What I share with the contestants on The Biggest Loser — and likely with anyone who has achieved great things that are really, really, really hard. I’m reflecting on the greatest lesson/gift: I will  continue to grow and win in my life every day because I now know that deep inside of me is an unstoppable force. I can do anything I set my mind to.

Peeps, that is the secret! Read more

7 tips to increase your water intake & lose weight

Part of our getting back to basics — nuts & bolts blog series

sparklingwaterI used to drink a case of diet coke every 3-5 days. My office was stocked with the stuff and I felt addicted to it. I also consumed my share of heavy milk shakes, juices loaded with sugar and alcoholic beverages. I can’t even begin to tell you how many calories I drank.

Five years ago when I went to weight-loss boot camp that all came to a screeching halt. That’s when I went “cold turkey” and replaced all of those high-calorie beverages with pure water. Well, all but the occasional alcoholic beverage, which I still enjoy!

Replacing sweetened drinks with water not only spares you hundreds of calories in a day, but water is just plain good for you. I remember the day about four years ago when I tried a diet coke and couldn’t even stand a sip of it. It was too sweet for me! My palette now prefers water — and, yes, it also likes the occasional alcoholic beverage! 😉

Most of us know that water is a principal component in our bodies. But did you know that water actually makes up about 60 percent of your body weight? Every system in our bodies depends on water.

Here are a few of the benefits of water based on the research and my personal experience. And if you struggle to get enough water in, here are my 7 tips for increasing making it much easier – in fact, delicious! Read more

My go-to snacks for weight loss

Part of our getting back to basics — nuts & bolts blog series

fruitsnack-cottagecheeseI eat five times per day to maintain my healthy weight. And I lost more than 200 lbs. on a nutrition plan that had me eating between four and six times per day consistently.

Why eat so often? I learned that to keep my metabolism stoked, I needed to eat regularly scheduled, smaller meals, more frequently. And I learned that skipping meals does NOT work. At least not long-term because it puts your body into starvation mode and your metabolism working against you.

At least two of my meals every day are snacks. I used to laugh when I was in fat-loss mode and my coach called 12 almonds and 3 ounces of turkey a meal. To me, it’s a snack. But I love snacks! They can be very important not just when you’re in weight-loss mode, but to healthy eating and living. Healthy snacks are also important for kids to help prevent obesity.

How many snackers do we have out there?

Well, here’s my #1 tip: Snack! Whatever your weight loss plan, do NOT skip meals. It doesn’t work and there is lots of evidence to prove it. When you reach for a mid morning or afternoon snack, make it a good one — to me that means low carb, include protein, and make it something YOU enjoy! Read more

Life’s moments of impact #2

Life’s moments of impact define us & make us better — if we let them

life'smomentsofimpactGood Monday morning, peeps! Today I am republishing a blog post I wrote in March of 2013 — something I almost never do. But this one continues to be the #1 most read blog post on this site. I am amazed at how many visits it gets and that must mean it has had an impact for some of you.

As I re-read this post this morning, I realized that even for me — right now at this time in my life — there are lessons and opportunities in the moments of impact. We don’t always want to open ourselves up to them but when we do, when we are fully present and alive in those moments — wow — it can be incredible.

So today, as we embark on the third week of a new year, this is for you. It’s also for my dear friends who have recently lost love ones in their lives (a huge moment of impact). I am thinking of you today and holding you in my heart.

Without further adieu or comment, I give you the entire blog post Learning from life’s moment’s of impact. If this one speaks to you or stirs something for you, let me know. Read more

Slow Cooker Salsa Chicken. Yum!

A super easy, flavorful, & totally healthy go-to-recipe — part of our back to basics, nuts & bolts blog series

chickensalsa-dinnerTuesday night dinner with my girlfriends included one of my favorite, go-to recipes — Slow Cooker Salsa Chicken. It’s a winner for those who want easy, low-fat, low carb recipes and who are on the go and don’t have a lot of time to spend in the kitchen. It’s so easy even I can do it!

You just “fire” the ingredients in the crock pot in the morning before work (takes about 5 minutes) and you have a delicious dinner at night. Now that’s my kind of cooking! I love it so much, I rotate it through my dinner repertoire every other week.

And whoever invented the idea of the slow cooker or crock pot has my undying gratitude. What a brilliant idea for those of us who don’t like to cook and are short on time.

If you get sick of the same old boring chicken, add this recipe to your healthy eating repertoire. There’s nothing boring about it. Read more

Want to lose weight? Get smart first.

weight-scale-helpA fun quiz on weight loss dos & don’ts & a few tips from me

It’s the New Year, so lots of people have embarked on a goal to lose weight and eat healthier. I don’t know about you, but my email is inundated with diet gurus providing tips on how to lose weight and much of the information is confusing, conflicting, and/or soliciting me to sign up for their particular program.

After losing and keeping off 200+ lbs, people also ask me for weight loss tips: How did I lose my weight — what nutritional plan did I follow? Did I track my food, why is that important and what tracker did I use? Did I weigh every day, and do I believe in that? How often did I exercise and how much? And more.

So, I’ve decided to get back to basics and write a series of blogs on nutrition and where to start. I’ll be sharing some of my personal stories, tips, favorite recipes and answering some of your questions. I urge anyone who has a question or topic for me related to nutrition or diet tips, to reach out.

Please know that I am not a nutritionist or an expert. But I did have success at losing and keeping off a lot of weight and I know what worked for me. I believe that when it comes to nutrition for weight loss (and healthy eating in general), you have to get smart first. You have to stop making excuses, take charge of your health, and know the basics on nutrition. This will probably include educating yourself and learning what resources to trust. Hopefully, I can help.

Read more

2016: How about a year of YOU in the equation?

What it means to put yourself in the equation & why it’s so important

ITE_Survival_quote_instagramChances are if you’re reading this blog, follow our Facebook page or belong to our online community, you’ve heard me express the phrase: Put yourself in the equation.

Not only has it become my life-mantra and framework for healthy living, but it is quickly becoming my life’s work. I aim to inspire, motivate and coach people to live from the center of the equation of their own lives, taking care of their health and wellness first. I’m that passionate about it, and that certain it’s the key to unlocking your personal potential.

This blog is about the WHAT and the WHY behind putting yourself in the equation. It includes tips about where to start if indeed you want to make YOU the priority in 2016.

I wholeheartedly agree with this quote from Audre Lorde. I now view taking care of my needs — my health and happiness — as an act of survival. What’s more, I’m living proof that when you do so, you not only make your life better, you also positively impact your family, your business or workplace, and your community.

In fact, my vision is that this is how we change the world. One person, one family, one business, one community at a time. Just think what’s possible if each of us is living as our best, healthiest, well-est self?!

It all starts with you, taking care of you. Read more

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