Faith Friday: Kindness


KINDNESS.

Regardless of who you are, where you’re from, the challenges you’ve faced, or your own unique experience, I think we can all agree the world needs more of it. Wars may rage, hearts break, and humans endlessly suffer, but kindness is all around us. And kindness is the powerful silver lining of human existence; that somewhere along the way of our worst days we’re bound to encounter it.

blogWith tough times like today – where our country and the world feel so juxtaposed and divided – kindness transcends it all. Have you ever had a super shitty day and out of nowhere, for no real reason, a complete stranger was nice to you? I’ve had one person – who I didn’t even know – be nice to me on one of  the worst days of my life, and it totally turned it around. In fact, when I think about that day, that is what comes to mind; the kindness. Not the terrible stuff, but the single act of kindness that turned it all around.

Peeps, I know life is rough. But kindness feels just as good to dish out as to have it dished to ya.

 

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Happy Aloha Friday!

Love,

Nikki

Faith Friday: Conquering Fears

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Life is beyond scary. It’s unpredictable, unfair, crazy, out-of-this-world terrifying. We’re petrified of getting fired, going bankrupt, making the wrong choice, picking the wrong fight, choosing the wrong partner, raising our kids wrong, making our car payment and navigating our careers in a shitty economy. I know, I know. Life is freakin rough.

I wrote last week all about faith. What I didn’t mention, though, is that faith isn’t only a means to make it through the storm. It’s also a foundation for having courage and conquering fears. When we have faith and confidence in our path, we’re able to take on new challenges and scary situations with gusto.

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I’ll never forget a conversation I had with an Aunty at my old work. I was at a major crossroads and trying to figure out what to do, where to go, who to turn to and how. I couldn’t make a decision; I was confused and lost and petrified of making the wrong choice.

She told me, “You know, it doesn’t really matter what you do. You could decide to move halfway around the world tomorrow and you’d still end up at the right place when the time is right. No matter what you do, you will end up where you’re supposed to be and be the person you’re supposed to become. If you make the wrong choices, it will be a lot more painful, but your path is your path, and it doesn’t waver.”

WHAT.

I have to tell you, this was pretty show-stopping at the time. I actually left work early and went on a run to contemplate it. I was so concerned about being on the right path, as if I had absolute and ultimate control over my fate.

The notion that we don’t have control, although it’s scary, somehow made me fearless. I made the best choice I could with what I knew at the time, and allowed God and the world and fate to correct my path as I traveled along it.

All we have to do is do the best we can, have faith that it will work out, and TAKE THE LEAP. Take it! Feel the fear and do it anyways; everything will happen exactly as it’s supposed to. Faith makes us strong, invincible, and unshakable.

God will walk with us through the deepest of waters.

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New Year, New Intentions!


Let’s face it: 2016 has been rough. Disappointing, frustrating, paradoxical, stupid, crazy, whatever – all of the above, plus more. I think we’re all ready for a new year, and ready for some new year intentions focused on fixing what we actually do have control over, and just hoping for the best for the whirlwind of worldly problems we can’t do much about.

I’m not a fan of resolutions – they’re too limited, finite and final. Intentions, however, focus on the end game; the idea, the big picture. A resolution  would be to lose 5 pounds in a certain time period; an intention would be to live a healthier and more active life. They both have a similar result, but the latter boasts a much more well-founded and all-encompassing approach than the former.


My intentions this year are simple: to keep chasing health, happiness, faith, and financial freedom. To continue building myself, my spiritual wellness, and getting to know God more and more each day 🙂

I’m starting this year so thankful and grateful for a year of laughter, love, adventures and lessons learned. A year of marathons and races and pr’s and soccer games, filled with friends and family and newfound faith.

I love the spirit of new beginnings and clean slates, and I wish you the happiest, healthiest and most joyful new year! 

Spartan Race Christmas Giveaway!


Merry (almost) Christmas, Spartans! I’m super excited to announce that I’m hosting a very merry Spartan Race giveaway! This prize is good for any open-heat race on the continental United States. Yep!

Entering the race is super easy: just follow this LINK to get to the giveaway page and follow the prompts. Good luck Spartans!

Also, the Spartan team has released brand new, extra badass medals for the new year. Check em out!

Healthy through the Holidays!


Christmas time is nothing short of magical. There’s tons of gifts and giving, parties, family and friends…all of which usually revolves around an abundance of delicious food and alcohol. From the office to gifts from coworkers to family to friends, food is EVERYWHERE. Of course, there are some things you simply can’t say no to, such as cookies a dear friend cooked specifically for you or your grandmother’s special pie she hands you with love and a smile. Those things are part of the magic, really – but they don’t have to derail our health or fitness goals if we act smart.


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One of the coolest traditions my dad and I have adopted for most major holidays is to go on a run. Every Thanksgiving, Fourth of July, New Year’s Eve, and yes, Christmas – we head out together and go for a run. Running helps offset everything we’re about to eat, and it actually helps us make better choices. How? Well, the truth is that when you head out for a decent run, you actually want healthier goods to grub on. Your body wants lean protein, greens, water, and the like – and when grandma does come around with her homemade pie, we take a tiny slice and appreciate every single bite.

Indulge Wisely

As we’ve mentioned, there are important times to indulge; particularly when the goods in question are crafted with love, labor, and steeped in tradition. So, DO IT. Indulge. Enjoy – just within reason. There’s plenty of lunches and breakfasts where we do have control over what we cook and chose and eat, so that’s where we get healthy. Eating wholesome, plan-based meals and drinking plenty of water and tea on the non-party times makes the party-times that much more enjoyable.


Don’t Stress – Be Happy!

Guilt is just as much a chief of joy as comparison – especially during the holidays. Stress and guilt have no place in the happiness, love, and merriness of gatherings and parties and family time and giving during the holidays. so let’s enjoy ourselves, trust our bodies, and let go of the control we’re so used to exercising during the holidays.


 

 

 

Spartan Race Season Pass!

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Since now really tis the season, it’s so crucial to get your fit friends and family the perfect gift. If they’re into running, climbing, racing, and general outdoorsy things like me, it’s tough to nail down what they want. What shoes? What gear? What we really want, though, is races.

When my mom & grandparents were nagging me to send out a Christmas list this year, all I was thinking was, “If only I could get races for Christmas. That’s literally all I want. When it comes to shoes and gear, I have to pick them out myself…”

Races are the reason we train early in the morning and late in the evening on busy Mondays and restful Sundays. For athletes in love with outdoor obstacles and general badassery, Spartan Races has the answer.

Or rather, three answers! Spartan Race is offering three brand spankin’ new Spartan Race Passes: the Open Season Pass, Elite Season Pass and Annual Trifecta Pass.

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The Open Season Pass is an Annual Pass that gives you unlimited (yess, unlimited!!), guaranteed (yess, guaranteed!) entry to races of all levels all over the world for the entire Calendar year. Applies to open heats, includes free bag check, and gives you a free spectator pass to drag your friend/spouse/personal photographer along. HOLY CHRISTMAS.

The Elite Season Pass is similar to the Open Season Pass, except its valid for ALL heats – including Elite & Competitive. So, if you’re a serious athlete, this baby is for you 🙂 GET IT.

Lastly, there’s the Annual Trifecta Pass. This is for more of the novice or newbie – it includes three race codes for each level – Sprint, Beast & Super – during the entire year of 2017. This is perfect for a friend or family member working on their first every trifecta!

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The cool thing about these is that individual races add up quickly and get expensive, so these babies offer a more cost-effective way to conquer Spartan courses all over the country.

Happy Holidays & AROO!

Nikki

 

 

 

Faith Friday: Growing in Faith

faith3No matter what your exact beliefs may be, faith is a powerful thing. Faith empowers us to let go of control and allow our lives to play out the way they are truly meant to. Faith isn’t giving up, it’s leaning in. Faith isn’t weak, or naïve, or pie-in-the-sky thinking; faith is the way to fulfillment, acceptance, and happiness. Faith allows us to adjust, adapt, and keep fighting for what we need and desire in our lives.

Faith is something I’ve struggled with tremendously in my own life. It’s difficult to believe that God (or the Universe, or whatever you believe in) was watching out for me when everything was going wrong and my life was falling apart. When I was heartbroken and lost and wandering around in the darkness, I struggled to grasp the fact that things do happen for a reason.

It’s not just me; a lot of people seriously struggle to maintain their faith through the faith2darker times of their life. Now that I’ve made it through the dark and into the light at the end of the tunnel, I’m able to look back objectively and see – truly, definitely, and clearly – that the struggles I endured have made me into a whole, happy, healthy, positive, caring, understanding, generous, and dynamic person. I am strong but vulnerable, confident yet humble, and completely able to handle whatever life throws my way. That is what we call perspective.

Sometimes we do need to be broken down and shaken up in order to reconstruct ourselves and become who we’re actually meant to be. You don’t know yourself until you – and your faith – are all that you have.

faith1It’s weird for me to reflect on the past and see that God was with me always, like a corrective bumper keeping me along the right path. The few times I fell, it was traumatic and disastrous and so bad that it forced me to completely reroute. It’s a blessing to realize that stress and pain and strife were so, so, inexplicably worth it. I would go through the fire a thousand times more just to be the person with the perspective that I have today.

Whatever you’re going through, I know that you’ll go through it. You will come out of the other side smarter, wiser, and stronger. More powerful and even more perfect. And with a little bit of faith, it will all be worth it.