Archive | March 2014

The Stories – 2014 Momentum Challenge

Momentum ChallengeSometimes in life, we have the opportunity to participate in something really special. When Regan & I created the 2014 Momentum Challenge, we wanted it to be different than anything we’d done up to that point in our careers. It was a reflection of our life, our work, our passions and our expertise all wrapped into one 4-week package. I knew it was special, but the way it came to life – thanks to all our amazing participants, was far beyond my wildest dreams. I was inspired, humbled and uplifted daily – from the Challenger’s personal stories of success + growth and the support they provided each other on our closed group Facebook page, to the accomplishments the group was able to achieve as a whole [we lost 318 lbs., 212 inches & had a 48% average improvement on our fitness tests!]. It honestly, transformed my life – and helped me dig deeper into my own personal growth, for which I am grateful beyond words. Their stories, I believe are so powerful – so whether you’re thinking about making some changes in our life, need a little support or a little inspiration, I wanted to share the experiences of our Challengers with you, in their own words [and don’t miss our special offer at the bottom!]:

“I joined the Momentum Challenge [after doing the Macks Mo Partner Program earlier in 2013] because I knew I could only improve – not just physically, but mentally, spiritually and emotionally. I’ve had food issues since I can remember – and the Partner Program + Momentum Challenge, reminded me to taste my food, eat a balanced diet and not beat myself up (ever) if I slip or cheat. Not only did I physically lose weight, but mentally lost baggage and self-doubt. What I enjoyed the most about working with Regan & Whitney was their support throughout the program via Facebook, text, email, phone calls – I felt like I was training right alongside them even though I live thousands of miles away in NYC.  I also loved the recipes and the workout videos were amazing – so much detail. I would recommend it to everyone (no, seriously).  Someone looking to get back in touch with his/her body.  Someone looking to transform eating habits and physical appearance.  Someone getting back into working out.  Someone looking to connect on a more meaningful level.  This program really has something for everyone!” – Claire G., NYC, Fitness Instructor + Trainer

“This challenge has been amazing for me. I am finding a way to balance what I put in to my body which has always been hard for me. I am making better decisions about what I know will be beneficial to how my body and my mind feels as it is fueled by good wholesome food and exercise. I was on vacation last week and had an incredible week. I exercised almost every day (using the Macks Mo workouts plus running), ate 85/15 and slept so well. I woke up this morning and felt so happy and content with where I am. I tend to not be a very optimistic or happy person and have a hard time living in the present and something has just clicked in the last month to turn that around for me. I have always known that eating better and exercising regularly is a good thing for my well-being and mental health but I’ve always had a hard time keeping the momentum after the initial motivation has worn off. I really want to thank you for your programming because I feel like I have such a positive foundation right now that I will be able to sustain it. I feel like when I focus on myself (I have a hard time taking care of myself and always take care of everyone else instead), even when it is small things like getting a 30 min workout in and being mindful about what I put in my body, I have a different perspective about life and the life I want to lead.” – Katie S., Seattle

“I’m feeling fantastic. I’m eating smarter and I think my body is really responding to the work-outs. I know this is not about weight loss but I got on the scale today and I saw a number that I haven’t seen in a couple of years! It was pretty encouraging. Your posts have been really good and have helped me focus more on mind, body and spirit. One gigantic THANK YOU!  I swear working with you has been such a fantastic experience. I feel challenged, motivated and supported.  You have created such a positive environment; it makes it hard to not want to work out and eat healthy.  I’m still doing the work outs from the challenge and each day I feel stronger and have found a deeper understanding of the exercises. I’M LOVING IT!! Thank you again, you have truly made a huge difference in my life.” – Megan M.

“I cannot believe how great I feel.  The afternoon fatigue is completely gone which has been amazing.  I’ve cut out soda cold turkey and it’s nice that my office has Talking Rain so I can drink that natural kind for the fizz (sometimes I need a little more than still water).  I think for the healthy/unhealthy routine, I don’t know if I ever felt the changes as much as I have with the challenge.  I knew I was eating healthier and working out but didn’t feel any changes in my energy/how I feel in my body (regardless of weight).  Now I feel lighter, I haven’t weighed myself but I feel more comfortable in my own skin. This has been a great month and I’m excited to continue this life style! I think taking what I learned and using it outside of a ‘challenge’ and in my daily life will be great.  Having my jeans get a little looser and maybe having to go shopping isn’t such a bad thing either 🙂 Thank you so much for fostering such a supportive group on Facebook.  It’s amazing how much I hear people talk about ‘bad’ food and feeling guilty about what they eat.  It’s crazy!  Like you’ve said many times, this is a journey and I can’t be perfect from the get-go but I’m excited to continue learning and working on my health.”  – Amanda T.

“My top 3 goals starting were to eat better, lose weight and firm up. You both helped me to get there by holding me accountable.  Through your encouraging emails, education and healthy recipes you kept me thinking about me — how to be strong in mind and body. You made it fun and interesting to stay focused on health. I would encourage anyone who wishes to discover or reclaim their inner athlete to try MacksMo because it’s not your typical workout. The personal attention, education and motivation to reach your limits make it unique.  The workouts are hard but immediately rewarding in physical fitness and mental toughness.  Whitney and Regan have really changed the way I feel about working out — instead of dreading it, I now completely look forward to it!!”  – JoAnn D.

“I love your messages about loving yourself now and not waiting to be a certain number on the scale.  I’ve been meditating in the AM and filling my head with positive messages instead of everything I need to do.  I also started yoga again and am trying to get there 3-4 times a week.  Still loving all your recipes.  I double a few so I have meals ready and can rotate.  My original goal was to lose 10 lbs and sleep better.  I’ve adjusted it to feeling sassier and sleeping better.  I’m getting there and enjoying the process.” – Nancy E.

“I feel great! I am really starting to notice increased energy! This is my 3rd 12-hour shift in a row and I have been making it to the gym after work every day…when I get home I actually have more energy than normal!  I’ve realized even more that you can’t “ruin” your healthy habits by having one unhealthy meal or missing a day of exercise…you can’t beat yourself up about it. You just need to try to make a healthy choice the next time.  I recommend the MOmentum Challenge not only a weight loss program but an outline to follow for a healthy and maintainable routine.” – Elyse R., Boston, Nurse

“I wanted to let you know that I am SO glad I participated in your challenge this past month. While I thought I would joining just for the “physical reasons,” (i.e. try to firm up a bit, lose a pound or two) I found that instead, the challenge was WAY more challenging and beneficial for me mentally. First, being part of the challenge was always in the back of my mind when I was making certain decisions about my health/wellness each day. And, the challenge really forced me to think about some of the habits and not-so-great decisions I had been used to making. It made me THINK and made me take some time to re-evaluate where I was in my life and where I wanted to go.” – Krista U., Seattle, Registered Dietitian

“Since I started the program, I’ve felt stronger, my skin looks so much better and I feel more focused on myself.   Plus I’m definitely losing weight! I’ve really been concentrating on doing little things that make me happy every day.  I’m focused on trying to keep positive thoughts and catch myself when I’m not.  I’m in a great frame of mind right now and some really positive things have come my way in the past couple weeks…this challenge :), asked to be in my best friend’s wedding, and my company is sending me on an all-expense paid trip to the Super Bowl!! 2014 is looking good!” – Jessica M.

“I feel like I have learned so much about nutrition and what I should be eating that I know I am set up for success. I am happy to realize that I am already seeing results even though I haven’t been able to workout as much as I want! You may think I am crazy because I feel like I can’t get a half hour workout done in a day (just wait until you have a baby!)! 🙂 Thanks for all of your support.  I am really thankful for this challenge because it has put me in a place that I know I will be able to move forward from and reach the goals that I have set for myself.”  – Lauren P., Helena MT, Physical Therapist

“I very much enjoyed your words of wisdom included with the challenge, and the sense of acceptance and compassion they contained. It is a refreshing change from the usual fitness/ beauty advice for women which is predicated on present inadequacy and the need for change rather than an acceptance of our imperfect perfection. So thank you for that.” – Josie A., Seattle

“Thank so much for your positivity and guidance! It really is much appreciated. I have needed to make this type of shift in my life for quite some time but have not had the motivation to do it. The most significant overall change I have noticed has been my perspective. I honestly didn’t think the challenge was going to “work” for me because in the past I’ve had a difficult time when I make mistakes, slip up, have one too many drinks, etc. Changing my way of thinking has really helped me get past this. I woke up the other day and felt so empowered and simply good in my own skin. You helped me realize that finding a healthy balance in day-to-day living is key…so what if I slipped up? Move on and face the next day, taking into account how the previous day felt to me physically and mentally.”

“I have really loved doing the challenge bc it has grounded me and made me more conscious about food and other decisions.  I have been breathing in the mornings and feel like I have been able to eat more consciously.”  – Sarah H.

“I like your philosophy of living clean 85% of the time and being okay with 15% of things that may not be the best choice, but they fill you up in other ways.  Thanks for that!” – Emily V.

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If these stories resonated with you and you’d like to begin building your own health momentum, I am so excited to tell you that last week we announced the re-launch of our Momentum Challenge for March in 3 separate flights (you can join starting 3/3, 3/10 or 3/17). Because of our desire to meet you where you’re at, so created 3 separate levels to participate based on your needs: 

  • Level 1 – $30: Includes Building Momentum [opening] and Maintaining Momentum [closing] packets that provide you with the tools to transform your world, while creating a body and life you love. Plus bonus articles, along with group support and discussions created through our closed Facebook group and online access to myself and Regan 24/7 to answer your questions and help facilitate a personal experience for you; complete with individualized check-ins and health coaching.
  • Level 2A – $75: NUTRITION PACKAGE includes Level 1 + plus 4-week complete Nutrition Program with grocery list, 30+ new recipes and articles to change your relationship with food and increase your knowledge ($75 savings from typical Macks Mo pricing!).
  • Level 2B – $75: WORKOUT PACKAGE includes Level 1 + 4-week Online Workout Program with exercise video tutorials and tools to create body-transforming results. All workouts take under 30 minutes, require only dumbbells and are designed so you can do them in the comfort of your home ($25 savings!).
  • Level 3 – $150: MOMENTUM COMBO includes both Nutrition + Workout Programming and 2 Challenge Packets ($30 savings!).

*If you’re ready to take the steps towards transforming your life all while creating a life and body you love, the Momentum Challenge is waiting for you, just click here: SIGN ME UP!

How to Increase Energy + Focus, While Creating MO(re) JOY in Your Life

AZIf you’re like me, the drear of winter seems to become more present by the time February rolls around. For this reason and the fact that within our business we always do a group challenge at the beginning of the year, Regan & I have made it a habit to schedule yearly sunny getaways in February. This vacation I had one prerogative – to actually recharge my batteries so I could come back with more enthusiasm & passion for my work. I was coming off of 8 weeks of intense working hours – writing, conducting and wrapping up our 2014 Momentum Challenge. We stayed in a condo rented through VRBO.com and went to the grocery store to load ourselves up with good food [mostly fresh fruits + veggies] for the week. The daily routine went like this – sleep in [like a serious, extra 5 hours more than usual sleep in], enjoy a cup of coffee together, move our bodies then cool down/stretch in the sun, eat breakfast, then head to the pool until we lost the sun – doing a little work, a little reading, a lot of relaxing. Then, in the evenings we would pretty much repeat the daytime, except with a fireplace instead of sun.

I have to say, this vacation, felt totally different than any other vacation we’ve taken, because I actually came back in better spirits, shape and frame of mine then when I left. So, my goal since I have been back is to recreate this nourishment every day in some way. Because who says we have to go on vacation to actually take good care of ourselves every day? Can you relate to working yourself “to death” for the weekend or an upcoming vacation? Then find you’re just exhausted all weekend or all vacation? Or maybe feeling the need to pack everything in and live it up because Monday is looming just around the corner?

recharge moreIf your answer is “yes”, I have a challenge for you – to schedule into your day, [at least almost] every day, something that you look forward to. A moment, an activity, a meal, a meet up – whatever. But something that you really can’t wait to do; and hold yourself accountable for doing it. Treat it like a mandatory meeting with your boss; you have to show up. Sometimes in order to be more productive, we don’t need to work more, we need to recharge more {tweet it if you agree – @macksmo}. And I am not talking about doing something for anyone else [even if you do receive joy in doing things for others], I am talking about doing something for YOU. Even if you love your job [like I do], we all need to step away from the work and recharge.

For many of us, we don’t realize how joy-less, stressed or over-worked we are until we take a step back and get committed to slowing down. Believe it or not, there is a direct correlation between the above three factors and poor health, lack of energy, lack of mental clarity + focus, cravings for anything – especially sweets/caffeine/salt and the inability to lose weight. So if you’re feeling “stuck”, like you can’t get ahead or perplexed as to why you can’t lose weight or never feel rested, I have a proposition for you – to embark on a 30 Day commitment to creating more joy in your life.

What would happen if you took a bath and turned on some relaxing music instead of watching your usual Tuesday night TV show line up? Would you sleep better? Instead of forcing yourself through another high-intensity workout when you’re tired & sore, what if you gave yourself permission to attend a soothing yoga class? Or instead of your usual Friday night happy hour, what if you and your gal pals met up for a cardio striptease class [just sayin’…]. Buy some flowers at the grocery store, call your best friend back, walk to the grocery store, play hookie from work, get a massage, learn to make a new recipe [click here for our newest!] or try a new restaurant, do a date night with your partner, pamper yourself with an at-home spa day [try searching Pinterest for DIY facials made from real food!], go to bed 30 minutes earlier – the options are endless! And I promise, the more you start taking care of you – in little ways, every day, the more energized, focused, clear and happy you’ll feel. Are you in? To help you with this, I created this Get More Joy Challenge chart for you to record your daily joys. At the beginning of each week [I suggest Sundays], write out one thing [or more!] each day that you can look forward to and keep it in a place where you can see it every morning – posted on the fridge, inside your closet door, your office, whatever works. I mean, come on – who doesn’t want an excuse to have a little more fun?
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If you like this blog post, but would like more support, we’re here to help! Last week we announced the re-launch of our Momentum Challenge for March in 3 separate flights (you could join 3/3, 3/10 or 3/17). Our January group of 50+ participants lost a total of 318 inches, 212 lbs. and had an average of 49% improvement on their fitness tests. And beyond the weight loss, they all increased energy, joy, self-love and gained a piece of their lives back. And we want to meet you where you’re at, so created 3 separate levels to participate based on your needs: 

  • Level 1 – $30: Includes Building Momentum [opening] and Maintaining Momentum [closing] packets that provide you with the tools to transform your world, while creating a body and life you love. Plus bonus articles, along with group support and discussions created through our closed Facebook group and online access to myself and Regan 24/7 to answer your questions and help facilitate a personal experience for you; complete with individualized check-ins and health coaching.
  • Level 2A – $75: NUTRITION PACKAGE includes Level 1 + plus 4-week complete Nutrition Program with grocery list, 30+ new recipes and articles to change your relationship with food and increase your knowledge ($75 savings from typical Macks Mo pricing!).
  • Level 2B – $75: WORKOUT PACKAGE includes Level 1 + 4-week Online Workout Program with exercise video tutorials and tools to create body-transforming results. All workouts take under 30 minutes, require only dumbbells and are designed so you can do them in the comfort of your home ($25 savings!).
  • Level 3 – $150: MOMENTUM COMBO includes both Nutrition + Workout Programming and 2 Challenge Packets ($30 savings!).

*If you’re ready to take the steps towards transforming your life all while creating a life and body you love, the Momentum Challenge is waiting for you, just click here: SIGN ME UP!

Italian Lamb Stew + Apple Thyme Muffins {YUM!}

italian lamb stewNothing warms the body and soul like a savory soup and hot-outta-the-oven muffins, am I right? My kitchen has been stew-possessed lately and there’s nary an ingredient that hasn’t been thrown into the pot lately. And I figured it was time to spread the love. So, fresh from my oven to yours, you’ve got to try this Italian Lamb Stew + Savory Apple Thyme Muffins!
*Options for stove top or crockpot. If cooking on the stove – preheat the oven then start the stew. While stew cooks, make the muffins, they should finish around the same time!

ITALIAN LAMB STEW:

Ingredients:
1 package organic, grass fed lamb [for crockpot = stew meat, for stove top = ground]
1 leek, washed & chopped
4 garlic cloves, chopped fine
2 cups organic vegetable broth
2 Tbls. olive oil
1 (15 oz.) can San Marzano diced tomatoes
Cannellini beans [for crockpot = 1 cup dried & soaked overnight, for stove top = 2 (15 oz.) cans drained & rinsed)|
1/2 lbs. small fingerling potatoes
1 red bell pepper, chopped into small pieces
1/2 bunch of kale [recommend Lacinato, but any kind works; spinach or chard great too]
1 Tbls. each: oregano + thyme
1 tsp. each: rosemary + red chili flakes [latter optional]
Sea salt + pepper to taste

  1. In a dutch oven [or large pot], add olive oil, leek + garlic and saute for 1 min – making sure not to brown the garlic. Then add the ground lamb and cook until browned.
  2. Add remaining ingredients [minus kale] and cook on medium heat for 30-45 minutes.
  3. 5 minutes before done, add kale or leaf green of choice!
    FOR CROCKPOT: Use lamb stew meat vs. ground and add all ingredients minus kale in together. 5 minutes before ready to serve, add kale to soften. Eazy breezy! 🙂

apple thyme muffinsSAVORY APPLE THYME MUFFINS: Original recipe from our fabulous client Heather and one of her Paleo cookbooks. I tweaked it by adding nuts, carrots and oats + adjusting flour ratio and swapping out some other ingredients. These muffins are dense like brownies vs. fluffy like a cake [my personal preference] and to die for. You will need an electric mixer (I use my Kitchen-Aid) and a food processor.
Ingredients:
DRY: 2 cups almond flour [you can process whole almonds in a food processor to make the flour – go until it becomes “flour-like” consistency], 1 tsp. baking soda, 1/2 tsp. each of: ground ginger + sea salt, 1 Tbls. thyme
FOOD PROCESSOR #1: 1/2 cup each rolled, organic oats + cashews (pecan or walnut yummy too) and 1 peeled/washed carrot
FOOD PROCESSOR #2 [WET INGREDIENTS]: 1 medium, cored organic apple [Gala or Pink Lady] – chopped a bit, 1/2 cup organic maple syrup or raw honey, 2 large eggs, 3 Tbls. coconut oil

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Place food processor #1 ingredients in a food processor and chop into fine chunks. Add to electric mixing bowl.
  3. Add other dry ingredients to mixing bowl and combine.
  4. In the same food processor [no need to clean], add the wet ingredients and blend until all liquid.
  5. Add wet ingredients to the mixing bowl and stir on low until all mixed.
  6. Divide the batter into 12 lined muffin cups [I have reusable silicon ones that are amazing] and cook for 20-25 minutes.


*If you like this post, share the love and don’t forget to tag us “@macksmo”.  And in case you haven’t heard — as of last week, we re-launched our over-the-top successful Momentum Challenge and you still have 2 chances to join [beginning either 3/10 or 3/17]. 
Our January group of 50+ participants lost a total of 318 inches, 212 lbs. and had an average of 49% improvement on their fitness tests. And beyond the weight loss, they all increased energy, joy, self-love and gained a piece of their lives back. And we want to meet you where you’re at, so created 3 separate levels to participate based on your needs: 

  • Level 1 – $30: Includes Building Momentum [opening] and Maintaining Momentum [closing] packets that provide you with the tools to transform your world, while creating a body and life you love. Plus bonus articles, along with group support and discussions created through our closed Facebook group and online access to myself and Regan 24/7 to answer your questions and help facilitate a personal experience for you; complete with individualized check-ins and health coaching.
  • Level 2A – $75: NUTRITION PACKAGE includes Level 1 + plus 4-week complete Nutrition Program with grocery list, 30+ new recipes and articles to change your relationship with food and increase your knowledge ($75 savings from typical Macks Mo pricing!).
  • Level 2B – $75: WORKOUT PACKAGE includes Level 1 + 4-week Online Workout Program with exercise video tutorials and tools to create body-transforming results. All workouts take under 30 minutes, require only dumbbells and are designed so you can do them in the comfort of your home ($25 savings!).
  • Level 3 – $150: MOMENTUM COMBO includes both Nutrition + Workout Programming and 2 Challenge Packets ($30 savings!).


*If you’re ready to take the steps towards transforming your life all while creating a life and body you love, the Momentum Challenge is waiting for you, just click here: SIGN ME UP!