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6 Ways to Stay Motivated to Workout

Some people live, breathe and dream about workouts. You hate those people. I know. Most of us know we need to workout, and know why. But few stay motivated to actually get our butt’s in gear, to finally make working out a habit! I’ve written about some ways to build that kind of habit, but wanted to give you a few tips on staying motivated. Obviously there will be some overlap between the habit building and motivation, but there are a few extra things you can do to keep your motivation level up!

work out

Know your “why”

Having a clear “why” for your pursuit of health, is crucial to staying motivated. And let me be clear…aesthetic goals are a place to start, but they are usually not enough to keep you going when things get tough. So come up with something deeper. Wanting to be able to stick around for your grandkids,  live your life with energy, be able to work and serve others well,  are all big-picture “why’s” that will keep you moving, when all you want to do is climb in bed with Ben and Jerry.

Non-scale victories

I don’t own a scale. I don’t let my daughters weigh themselves. I was enslaved to the numbers on a scale for years. Let me tell you, that no number on a scale can measure your actual health, strength or how energetic and strong you feel. I like for my clients to have other types of goals and then we celebrate when they meet those goals!  Maybe they want to do a certain number of push-ups, fit into a certain pair of pants, or be able to run around the back yard with their kids without having to take a break. The scale can’t measure any of those things. AND… 150lbs on someone who never works out, and eats fast food all of the time, is going to look a lot different than 150lbs on someone who is living a healthy lifestyle fueling their body well, and growing in their strength.  Celebrating non-scale victories helps you to see progress more clearly, and reminds you of the deeper reasons why you are pursuing a healthier lifestyle!

Switch it up

Some people love consistency, but most of us get bored easily. Change up your workouts. If you live in a city with ClassPass or GuavaPass, I highly recommend you utilize those! They are a perfect way to try out different types of workouts, bringing you some variety. Having something new to try and master keeps most people motivated to keep truckin’ on! If you can’t swing a ClassPass or Guava Pass, then vary your workouts at home. Try different types of YouTube videos and mix them up with a run, a sprint session or a heavy weight session!

Find community (online or off)

You have probably heard the saying, you are the average of the 5 people you spend the most time with. So, choose wisely! Surround yourself with people who understand your goals, and who are working towards the same thing. If you can find this in your offline life, awesome! If not, join some online FB groups, get a trainer or join an online bootcamp (shameless plug), or connect with people through social media (check out some fitness related hash-tags). If everyone around you (or everyone in your IG feed) is making time for the gym, a little positive peer pressure might kick in, and get your booty to the gym as well!

Schedule it in your day

What gets planned gets done. And ya’ll, I’m NOT a planner. But, I am learning this principle, and implementing it in my own loose way (planners of the world would mock me, but I am getting it together in the planning department). If you put a workout on your to-do list you are more likely to do it (<–see what I did there). Even though I am not a huge list-maker and crosser-offer, I am much more likely to get anything I put in writing, done! Schedule a workout into your day, and then cross it off when you finish.

Set up small rewards along the way

Set up small rewards like a new pair of workout capris, some new sneakers, a quick massage, or an afternoon off at the coffee shop when you meet a goal. I am not a fan of food being a reward, and you certainly wouldn’t want to reward yourself with something that will derail your goals (like a week off of working out)! So, think about what would reinforce your healthy lifestyle, and then set your goals with that reward in mind.

Here are some examples:

  • When I am able to complete 10 chin-ups, I will get a manicure and pedicure with my friend.
  • When I have worked out every week day for an entire month, I will buy a a new workout outfit.
  • When I drop one dress size, I will take one Saturday morning off to go read in a coffee shop.

Be sure to tell someone about your goals and rewards so that you will have some people cheering you on and celebrating with you as you begin reaching those goals!

Staying motivated to work out can be a challenge when you are busy living life and doing your thing. But, the benefits are obvious (in addition to the health benefits, there is a lot f research that shows regular exercise can correlate to productivity and overall success at work). So, while it would be great if we were all intrinsically motivated to live a sugar free life at the gym, it is likely that you will need to get creative in your extrinsic motivators. Enlist help and do what you’ve got to do. You might find over time that once you have worked fitness into your life for long enough, that you actually do begin to feel a lot of that intrinsic motivation rising up in you. Until then…bribe yourself with a kid-free afternoon or some cute new LuLu’s!


Are you a busy woman juggling faith, work, home and family?

I am too.

Sometimes women like us can get so focused on helping others that we forget to take some time for ourselves. We don’t set aside time to spend with God, and  workouts fall to the wayside. I get it. Sometimes I feel like I don’t have another minute in my day to spare. But, if we don’t take our spiritual and physical health seriously, we won’t be able to work, serve and love well. We will end up a hot mess of frustration and anxiety.

I hear ya’ sister…that struggle is real, and I feel it every day!

That’s why I am committed to helping women like you refocus their faith and get in shape. Because when we are planted in God’s Word, and feeling healthy and confident, we can go out and do all of those things God calls us to do, and we can do them excellently!

Sign up below and get my 3 Day Faith and Fitness Quick Start Guide for Busy Women. In it you will find 3 days of Bible study (looking at a different Psalm each day), and 3 quick, effective and simple workouts for you to do at home! This guide is totally FREE and will take you less than 30 minutes to go through each day!

 Sign up here, to snag yours!


Why You Should Train Functionally

I am pretty passionate about everyone finding a way to squeeze some form of exercise into their lifestyle. So, in an effort to help you find something that is a good fit, I have called in a few experts to share about various types of workouts. When I was thinking through the different experts I would want to share with ya’ll, Rob was the first who came to mind!

(Rob led my personal training certification class. If you are living in Bangkok, and thinking about becoming a PT, I highly recommend Evolution Fitness.)

What I love about Rob is that he really knows what he is talking about, but comes across super genuine, super relatable, and not too impressed with himself! He also has a great holistic view of fitness, and really trained us to think not only about what would be most effective for our clients, but what would be most fun for our clients! So, I am excited to have him first up in this series to talk about functional training and its benefits! FYI…This is one of my favorite ways to train!

I’ve been in the fitness industry for over 10 years and feel very lucky to have had the opportunity to train with, work with and learn from many brilliant trainers and coaches in many different fields. The beauty of this was my exposure to many varied approaches and styles and the opportunity to learn all about them first hand and eventually forge my own approach and understanding to apply to and share with the clients, athletes and fellow trainers/coaches I work with. The reason I begin by mentioning this is I believe everyone should take the opportunity to do the same thing, to explore movement and exercise to filter through and find something that not only works for you,  but something that you actually enjoy, like being a kid and playing again. I don’t ever remember play being a ‘chore’ or ‘hard work’, and neither should your workouts be.

If my style or approach to training or conditioning had to be pigeon holed into a category or name, functional training would be the category I would be placed in. Functional training is described as using non-traditional strength training tools and non-traditional exercises while using a multi-dimensional approach to movement. However, in my opinion, functional training doesn’t exist. What I mean is that functional training refers to the approach of training a specific client for a specific task/function. That means there will never be 1 approach that is fitting for 2 different people. What does exist is training for a function, for a specific task or requirement (eg, pitching a baseball – being able to stop, turn and accelerate – swinging a golf club – carrying grandkids) when training for a specific function you also have the fun of utilizing all the available training tools available at your dispense. When creating a program for a specific function, we look at movement patterns within the body, how the body moves in space (in all 3 planes of motion), how well the body can control different speeds and forces (accelerate, decelerate, dynamically stabilize and come to balance), what kind of ranges the body is capable of and needs and how strong and stable it is throughout all of that. This enables me to see what areas are lacking and need to be focused on in my programing.

The exciting thing about functional training is that you are never limited or restricted with training possibilities or exercise variations. Likewise, the training tools/equipment now available in the functional training realm is huge and extremely versatile meaning training possibilities are endless. This helps make workouts fun again and allow you the freedom of play!

If you want to try a workout like the one described above, and live in Bangkok, stop by New Moves for a class! If you are in Lexington SC, the Bodyshop is amazing! If you are in neither of those places, you might want to look up a gym nearby that offers boot camp kinds of classes. Often (not always), those types of places will offer functional workouts!

You can follow Rob on:

New Moves Instagram/Facebook/Website/Personal Instagram/NASM Personal Trainer Course

A Little About Rob:

Rob Cook Graduated from the Australian Institute of Fitness as an Executive Master Trainer and went on to start his first Personal Training/Bootcamp Business on the Gold Coast, Australia. After that, began travelling and working with elite athletes, celebrities and business executives throughout the UK, US & Canada. While in the UK, Rob began studying with FASTER Global and attained his Diploma in Functional Performance and Diploma in Functional Therapy amongst others. He is now the Head Educator/Mentor for FASTER Global in the regions of Asia Pacific where he travels often, teaching courses to educate other trainers. Rob is the Head educator in Thailand for NASM and presents for Freemotion Fitness. He now resides in Bangkok, Thailand where he proudly Founded NewMoves with his team of trainers.  They work with Diplomats, celebrities, expatriates and athletes while specializing in conditioning, rehab and many other aspects of the fitness industry. Rob is often featured in publications such The Bangkok Post, GQ Thailand and Lifestyle Asia to name just a few. Like I said…he knows his stuff ya’ll!


Want a Free 3 Day Total Body Workout Plan? Sign up here!

Money Matters, What I am Learning and Some Resources

So, I am all about helping you to get it together with grace. However, there is one area, where I need a lot less grace and lot more structure, money!

Money stresses me out. The details associated with money stress me out more. But, as I am learning what it means to be a good steward of the money God has given us, I am able to better use it towards the kingdom.

I wanted to share with you guys my favorite tools and resources when it comes to money. But first, I wanted to share a few things to keep in mind in terms of money. I am very much in the process of learning and studying these principles, but wanted to share what I’ve got with you so far.

1. All that we have belongs to God.

2. We need to be wise investors in eternal things.

3. Living with open hands is the only way for a believer to live.

4. You can only cut out so much, but you can always earn more.

5. If you have been given much, it is for a purpose that is far greater than your own wants and desires.

6. God provides what we need. Sometimes He gives us things we want.

This list is growing, but is a good starting point. As a believer, I feel a good amount of responsibility in handling my money wisely. We have NOT always done this, truly this is a new-ish thing for me. One day, I will write about this long journey that we are still on, in terms of doing this money thing right. But, as I am learning, I want to pass on the tools and information that have been helpful to me. So, here are some practical things for you.

You Need a Budget

This app has changed our lives. I used to have a big spread sheet that I had to check every day, and reconcile with our bank account. It was annoying, but, kept us in line. Then, I tried You Need a Budget, and got rid of our spread sheet all together. The thing that has been so useful for us, is that both Esteban and I can see how much we have in each budgeted area. We can both track in the same place, and we can keep our U.S. account in one budget and our Thai account in another. This has been a total game changer for us. If you don’t read anything else, go and get this app. I am not even an affiliate for it people! I just really love it!!!


I have read the Treasure Principle by Randy Alcorn (Christian perspective on $ and what it means to be a steward) and Workable Wealth by Mary Beth Storjohann (practical things like investing, retirement, saving, at a really basic level). I know lots of people love Dave Ramsey’s books, but I haven’t read one relating to money (although EntreLeadership was fantastic), so I can’t recommend one just yet.


So Money with Farnoosh Torabi is one of my favorite podcasts. I love this podcast, because Farnoosh interviews super succesful people about their lives, their views on money and their financial practices. It is super varied, and you get lots more than just money advice. Sometimes I don’t agree with what people’s view points are, but that’s okay, it makes me think through why I disagree!

Dave Ramsey’ podcast is really practical. Sometimes he rubs me the wrong way just a bit, but he covers things that go far beyond paying off debt and savings. Most of his info is really applicable and helpful!

What resources do you guys love? I want to learn a lot more this year, so I am open to suggestions peeps! Any all resources are welcome, except for stuff that is all about manifesting money. I can’t handle that stuff!!


Want access to my free eBook, and other fun resources in my growing resource library?

Sign up here!


Looking for a workout program that is budget friendly? I have designed 4 Minute Fat Burning Online Boot Camp for busy women who want to lose weight and get in shape.

Read more about it here, and sign up!

My Meal Planning Game Changer

In case you are new here, you should know a few things.

1) I can cook, some things.

2) I hate cooking.

3) Recipes feel more like a suggestion to me than they do an actual recipe.

4) I am a non-planner. Planning is hard. It stresses me out.

5) I am super picky and so is a precious little daughter of mine.

Okay…now that you have that little bit of background, you should also know that we are a pretty busy family. We don’t have unlimited financial resources. So, planning meals for the week is actually a necessity. —->cue Danielle breaking out in hives.

I used to just go to the grocery store, buy whatever seemed reasonable, spend a lot of money on it, and then get home, only to realize that I had enough for about three meals that week. Which meant that my husband or I would end up back at the grocery store, spending more $ and wasting precious time.

So, I tried eMeals, which seemed like the perfect idea. They looked at the sales in your area, made a meal plan for the week, and gave you a list. Perfect right? Well, I ended up liking maybe one or two meals each week, which still left me with 5 days that I needed to come up with something amazing edible. What I did love about eMeals was that they provided you with a shopping list. I really need someone to take my recipes and break them down into a shopping list for me. That was soooooo helpful.

Enter Pinterest. I had a million (okay that is an exaggeration) meals pinned. They all looked amazing, but never made their way onto our dinner table. Why? Because writing out a weekly plan and making a list felt like torture, and I am not one to willingly submit myself to torture.

Then, the heavens opened up, and I saw the light. A blogger had written about Plat to Eat before, but I ignored her posts. That seemed really plan-y. I mean it had the word Plan in the title. Clearly, it was not for me. But, there was a free trial, so I tried. And found out, that it was TOTALLY for me!

Here’s the rundown:

Simple Meal Planning - Plan to Eat

Plan to Eat is an online program that allows you to EASILY store your recipes, drag and drop those recipes into a weekly planner, and then generate a shopping list based on those recipes. You can type in the recipe, or automatically upload one from any website (in like 30 seconds). You can add items to your list, check what you ate last week, and share recipes with friends. Seriously. This. Was. A. Gamechanger.

It took me about 35 minutes when I first got the program to upload my recipes. Now, when I come across a new recipe, it takes me about 30 seconds! Planning my trip to the grocery store takes me about 5 minutes each week. I drag and drop, look at the list generated, check off anything I already have, and add anything else I might need. And I am done. I meal plan in 5 minutes people. And….shopping with a list like that every week means I save lots of money, and time!

Ya’ll…I told you that I wanted to help you get it together with grace this year right? Well…I desperately needed to get my meal planning, grocery shopping act together, for the sake of our family’s budget. And this  is the simplest, most effective program I have come across to help me do that. Maybe you are an awesome Martha Stewart type who enjoys sitting down with a binder of delicious meals, sorting through them, and then writing out your list each week. If that is you, I am so impressed. I wish I was like that. I have friends like that. They are amazing, and dinner at their place is usually pretty perfect. But, me, not so much. I have no ability to do things like that. If I didn’t have Plan to Eat, my family would probably be eating Kraft Mac and Cheese for half of the week. So, for those of you who are like me, here is a little bit of grace to help you get your meal planning act together. Plan to Eat….that is your grace. Get it. It is free to try for a month. You lose NOTHING. If you hate it,  just cancel!

If you do sign up, let’s be friends, and share recipes. Just look me up under dnyelmrie!

Sign up for your trial here!

Simple Meal Planning - Plan to Eat

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*This post contains affiliate links. Read my full disclosure here.

Two Things to Keep in Mind While Reading Your Bible

In today’s world Bible study has often been relegated to a 5 minute search for some applicable truth or encouragement for the day. I will admit that I’ve been guilty of approaching God’s word this way in the past. But, as my love for studying scripture has grown, I have become keenly aware of how approaching God and His Word that way, cheapens the relationship He offers us in Christ.

As a teacher who works with struggling students, I spend a lot of time teaching high schoolers how to study. In all of my years of teaching, I have never once told a student to open their text book to the middle of a chapter, read two sentences and begin answering questions based on those two sentences. Yet, when we struggle with the goodness of God, we open up to some verse that tells us He is good, read it over and over, and close the book, hoping that it will stick with us throughout the day. No one has ever understood molecular bonds by reading three sentences about what a molecular bond is (and let’s be honest…I could read a whole textbook on that concept and still not understand). Why do we think that we will understand the riches of God’s character and the vastness of his story, by doing just that with our time in the Word?

God has given us all of scripture, because all of it is necessary. It is all part of us knowing Him, and being able to relate to Him. Making time to study God’s work can be hard. Understanding scripture can be hard. But, when we approach scripture with the right mindset, we are putting ourselves in a much better place to know God in a deeper, more intimate way. From that knowledge flows love, and a deep understanding of grace, mercy and what we are called to be and do.

I want to help us re-shift our thinking when it comes to spending time reading and studying the Bible, and think there are two main ways for us to do that.

The Bible is not about you.

There is a lot about you in the Bible. There are things that apply to you all over the pages of Scripture. But ultimately, the Bible is NOT about you. It is about Him. It is about God’s character, His plan, and His glory. When you sit down to read the Bible, remember first and foremost, that the Bible is about God. In the same way a biography is about one person, with many relationships throughout that person’s life, scripture is always, mainly about God. Everything in it that has to do with us, or other people, will also point back to God.

There is a time and place where the Bible speaks about you. But, before you go there, ask yourself:

  • What does this passage say about who God is?
  • What am I learning about God’s will/plan/heart?
  • How does what I am reading help me to worship God more fully?

The Bible is God’s story.

There are many intriguing stories throughout the pages of scripture. People of great faith, obeying God with hearts of worship. There are battles and love stories, miracles and deep emotions.  While the Bible is filled with hundreds of individual stories, there one story that spans the entirety of the Bible, it is God’s story. He is weaving together the story of who He is, what He has done, and how He has done it throughout every small story we find from Genesis to Revelation.   If we miss this, we miss the point! Esther, Abraham, Rahab, Moses, Joshua, David, John the Baptist, every prophet, every apostle; their stories are only important in light of the one big story that unfolds on the pages of scripture; God’s story.

To keep this at the forefront while reading the Bible each day, ask yourself:

  • How does what I just read, fit into the bigger picture of God’s story?
  • What other pieces of God’s story does this piece of scripture shed light on?

You don’t need a ton of time to read scripture each day. But, we do need to come to those pages remembering their purpose. Coming to scripture with its main purpose and focus in mind, helps us to spend our time in the Word more wisely. It will help us to better understand the God that we are called to love and serve, and to walk more freely in light of who He is.

How does what I just read, fit into the bigger picture of God's story? Click To Tweet

If you are totally lost when it comes to studying God’s word, I cannot recommend the method outlined in Women of the Word more highly. If you haven’t gotten that book, I strongly suggest you grab a copy today.  Look through the chapters in the second half. They walk you through a great method of Bible study and teach you how to dig into scripture.


Are you a busy woman juggling faith, work, home and family?

I am too.

Sometimes women like us can get so focused on helping others that we forget to take some time for ourselves. We don’t set aside time to spend with God, and  workouts fall to the wayside. I get it. Sometimes I feel like I don’t have another minute in my day to spare. But, if we don’t take our spiritual and physical health seriously, we won’t be able to work, serve and love well. We will end up a hot mess of frustration and anxiety.

I hear ya’ sister…that struggle is real, and I feel it every day!

That’s why I am committed to helping women like you refocus their faith and get in shape. Because when we are planted in God’s Word, and feeling healthy and confident, we can go out and do all of those things God calls us to do, and we can do them excellently!

Sign up below and get my 3 Day Faith and Fitness Quick Start Guide for Busy Women. In it you will find 3 days of Bible study (looking at a different Psalm each day), and 3 quick, effective and simple workouts for you to do at home! This guide is totally FREE and will take you less than 30 minutes to go through each day!

 Sign up here, to snag yours!

*This post contains affiliate links. Read my full disclosure here to learn more.

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