Skip to Content

About: Olivia

Recent Posts by Olivia

How Much Sleep Do You Really Need?

I am sure you have heard of the sayings “the early bird catches the worm” or “you can sleep when you’re dead.”  Well, with our busy, over scheduled modern day lifestyles, many of us seem to wear our lack of sleep like a badge of honour. In our society, working overtime and being chronically busy are all signs of the motivated high achieving folk. With that being said, no wonder so many of us never think of sleep deprivation as a serious problem. It turns out that missing sleep really isn’t getting any of us farther ahead in life. Instead, it’s making us sick, unhappy and even depressed. Cumulative sleep debt is robbing us of mental capacity, preventing us all from performing at our best and it’s the barrier between living life optimally. Not to mention the unpleasant side effects of weight gain and aging at a more rapid rate. Lame….right?

As adults we NEED 7-9 hours of sleep. The benefits of enough good quality sleep include:

Screen Shot 2015-05-10 at 8.13.28 PM

– Appetite hormones stabilized

– Reduced inflammation

– Reduced cortisol (our stress hormone). FYI – When our cortisol levels are chronically high (usually due to stress and poor nutrition), our testosterone, which is what we need to build muscle and burn fat, cannot be high at the same time. Hence why it is virtually impossible to lose body fat when we are chronically stressed. Sleep will naturally help to lower our cortisol and promote fat burning in the body.

-Beautifying benefits thanks to melatonin and growth hormone both of which are highest at night

-Repair and regeneration of muscle, skin and bone cells which also mainly occur at night

-Feeling more optimistic, content and vibrant!

The answer is simple, but remarkably underrated in our productivity-obsessed culture: Get more sleep.

With that being said,  just saying “get more sleep” is obviously much easier said than done with the overwhelming amount of tasks, expectations and stress we are all under. However, it may be helpful to see if you can eliminate or reduce some things off of your plate. For instance, there are many things we do in life that are unnecessary or not as important as we make them out to be. I, for one, am still learning to not take on so much in life, accept things as they are, and to eliminate what no longer serves. I find this very useful in creating a more healthy, balanced lifestyle. Not to mention lowering your caffeine intake which can make a difference too. Again, I know, not always the most glamour of solutions, but too much caffeine along with chronic stress and a resistance to what is can truly disrupt our ability to sleep and stay sleeping throughout the night.

Finally, daily exercise, even something as little as 30 minutes of walking everyday incorporated with proper nutrition are hugely beneficial to stabilizing your blood sugar levels and reducing cortisol. Both of which contribute to better quality sleep. In the end, all of these things do accumulate and make a big difference to not only to our sleep, but also our weight, mood and ultimately how we feel day to day.

We owe it to ourselves to develop better sleep habits.

Your body and mind will thank you!

Much love,

Olivia

PS – If you’re having trouble going to sleep or staying asleep for long periods of time no matter what you do, it could be your hormones. Message me anytime to discuss or check out this link to have your hormones today: GET YOUR HORMONES TESTED TODAY!

2 Continue Reading →

Are You Eating Like a Sumo Wrestler?

Sumo wrestling is a traditional Japanese sport; where the heavier you are the better.  Sumo wrestlers intensely stare each other in the eyes, stomp down with their heavy feet and try to intimidate their opponent.  One of the heaviest sumo wrestlers, known as Rikishi in Japanese, was born in Hawaii and weighs in at 630 pounds!

Why am I bringing this up? Well, the over busy, hectic North American lifestyle can lead to unknowingly eating like a sumo wrestler. The difference being, the goal of most North Americans is NOT to become heavier.

sumoman

So how do sumo wrestlers get so big?

1.  They don’t eat breakfast.  Sumo wrestlers NEVER eat breakfast.  This is a great way to slow down your bodies metabolism and ensure you binge eat later on in the day when your blood sugar levels are super low.

2.  They only eat 1-2 meals a day.  Sumo wrestlers get up early, work out and then only eat until late in the day.  This way they ensure they are starving and will eat anything in sight when they do eat.  They eat as much as they can to ensure they consume a massive amount of calories for a maximum amount of weight gain.  When you eat a large amount of calories in one sitting, the body uses up what it can and then stores the remaining energy reserves for later.  When your storage tank gets full, everything left over is stored directly as fat.

3.  They eat out. Many studies prove that people who eat out at restaurants will eat 43% more food and 32% more fat then they would if they were at home. Not to mention the fact that eating out usually means picking unhealthy food options. While eating out, sumo wrestlers try and push through the “getting full” signals their body is giving them to ensure more calories are consumed in one sitting.

Scary right? Sadly, a lot of these behaviors probably sound quite familiar to most of us! I know that as a personal trainer, I have heard this scenario many times: “I get up early, skip breakfast, race to the office or to drop the kids off at school, and between stressful meetings try and scarf down and meal or two.”

This is truly the result of our hectic, busy North American lifestyles.  When you work as much as most of us do, it is easy to unknowingly eat like a sumo wrester. For many reasons, but this being one of them, I created the Spring Reboot program specifically to support busy professional woman and mothers with meal prepping, eating properly and learning how to put themselves first.

So how do you change your habits if you are eating similarly to a sumo wrestler?

1) Drink water – If there was only ONE healthy habit I could recommend to feel and look your best, it would be to drink a LARGE glass of water first thing in the morning before anything else. Drinking lots of water hydrates the cells and ensures proper regularity. Most people are “backed up” and mistake being tired and hungry for dehydration. Being dehydrated slows down your metabolism and the process of burning fat. Drink up….try 3 litres a day as a goal!

2) Eat breakfast: Without breakfast, we slow down our body’s metabolism, increase food cravings, promote overeating, and make it harder to focus and concentrate for the rest of the day. Your mother was right; breakfast is the most important meal of the day. Whatever you eat, or do not eat for that matter will impact your mood, energy level, digestion and appetite for the rest of the day. Try making a power packed smoothie to rev your metabolism and get you full and satisfied.

3) Stop skipping meals & eat like your life depends on it: The whole waiting to eat until we are virtually starving has got to STOP! Eating healthy meals throughout your day will not only ensure your blood sugar and energy levels stay stable, but will also work to prevent you from turning into an angry, moody version of yourself. Eat more high quality foods more often and reap the rewards of abundant energy and weight loss.

Want to learn how to fuel your body from the inside out, eat frequently and never get caught up in the sumo wrestler way of living? Sign up to be notified of the next meal prepping program for women HERE.

Much love,

Olivia

1 Continue Reading →

3 Really Good Reasons to Meal Prep

There is no doubt that nutrition plays the biggest role in having the energy and body you desire. Problem being, we’re all so busy that we tend to be under nourished and dehydrated due to our hectic lifestyles. Meal prepping, for that reason is one of the best ways to stay on top of your game.

Here Are 3 Really Good Reasons to Meal Prep:

1) You Will Be More Fit

Having your meals on hand during the day means you don’t have to go out to eat. This not only saves you time, but also your waistline. You have full control over the portions and ingredients.

2) Regulated Metabolism

You’ll be prepared at snack time when hunger strikes with something nourishing, so you can feed your body regularly and keep you metabolism humming. Snacking regularly will stop your body falling into a catabolic state, which results in the loss of lean body tissue (including muscle) and the lowering of your metabolism.

3) More Cash

Another major advantage of planning and prepping your meals: saving money. Skip the $14.99 a day you spend on a not-so-great salad covered in croutons and a chemical laden dressing..instead prep your meals and pocket roughly $80 a week. That’s enough for a new gym top and a drop in pass to your favourite workout class!

And while I was grocery shopping today to shoot a meal prep video for the upcoming Spring Reboot program, I came up with these 3 rules for grocery shopping:

1) Never go grocery shopping hungry

2) Always bring your bags with you (I ALWAYS forget and need to shoot a video on ways to not forget this lol)

3) Bring a shopping list and better yet have it on your phone so you won’t forget!

Let’s put our nutrition first and reap the benefits of balanced energy, weight loss and truly….a better life:)

Much love everyone,

Olivia :)

olivia jars!

0 Continue Reading →

How to Make Simple Chicken Quinoa Chilli

If you are anything like me and most of the busy women of the Empowered Fit Club, you just don’t have the time (and sometimes energy) for elaborate meals with lots of prep and ingredients. With that being said, this Simple Chicken Quinoa Chilli will be the perfect recipe for YOU if you struggle with recipe prep.

For the Spring Reboot program, I got a lot of requests for simple, but tasty recipes.  Thus the creation of this simple Chicken Quinoa Chilli recipe. This has to be one of my favourite quick meals to make and meal prep with for “Sunday Meal Prep.” I always seem to have the ingredients kicking around in my pantry and freezer so there is less to buy at the grocery store. Whether your goals are to loose weight, put on muscle, or save time and money this recipe is a perfect addition to your collection.

Chicken Quinoa Chili

Chicken Quinoa Chilli
Servings: 5
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 45 minutes1.5 c quinoa
4 Roma tomatoes
1 540ml can black beans, drained 1 cup frozen corn
2 1/2 c chicken stock
1 lbs ground chicken or turkey
1 green pepper, chopped thinly
1 medium yam, diced3 stalk of celery, sliced
1 medium onion, diced
2 garlic cloves
2 tsp cumin
2 tsp chili powder
salt and pepper to taste1. Combine and mix all ingredients in a slow cooker, set on low and cook for 5-7 hours. OR, cook in pot for 45 minutes at medium temperature. Stir occasionally.2. Enjoy!

DOWNLOAD —>>> Chicken Quinoa Chilli PDF

Much love,

Olivia xo

1 Continue Reading →

How To Eat Fat to Burn Fat

Yes you heard it right folks!

Eating healthy fats are a KEY component to any nutrition or weight loss plan. Researchers have discovered that not all fats are to blame for the increased rates of obesity and heart disease – you actually need to eat fat to burn fat!

Did you know that eating good fats helps you to feel full and satisfied longer; reducing overeating and food cravings? Good fats provide some of the highest sources of stable energy; helping to maintain blood sugar levels and to avoid energy crashes. Also, healthy fats are essential in proper hormone, metabolism and muscle production. Thus, helping you burn more calories all day long for a leaner, more toned body!avocado-300x175

The best sources of good fats to include are coconut oil (my absolute favourite), olive oil, fish oil, salmon, flax seed, nuts, nut butters, and avocados. The fats you want to avoid are trans fats, also known as hydrogenated oil, and most saturated fats; usually found in deep fried and processed foods.

When in doubt, be sure to choose fats that have gone through the least amount of processing and are the closest to nature. In the meantime, go eat some healthy fats.

Try dipping apple slices into natural almond butter for a fat burning snack or adding coconut oil into your favourite smoothie for longer, sustained energy. Also, one of my favourite ways to eat healthy fat is by adding chia seeds to oatmeal or pancakes for breakfast.

Check out all of the wonderful benefits of coconut oil:

Much love,

-Olivia

0 Continue Reading →

4 Delicious Breakfast Recipes

Your mother was right; breakfast is the most important meal of the day. Whatever you eat, or do not eat for that matter will impact your mood, energy level, digestion and appetite for the rest of the day.

Just imagine, you get up in the morning and you go to drive your car to school or to work. But your gas tank is empty, so you can’t go anywhere. Now imagine your body, getting up and skipping breakfast. How well do you think you will make it through your day? I love comparing it this way as cars cannot obviously run on empty and our bodies are truly no different. Also, if you had a small child, would you ever not just feed it breakfast? No, of course not. I like the airplane oxygen mask concept. You put yours on FIRST, and then your child. Point being, you are no use to anyone when you haven’t taken care of yourself first:). You are important and deserve to have energy to fuel your day.

Without breakfast, we slow down our body’s metabolism, increase food cravings, promote overeating, and make it harder to focus and concentrate for the rest of the day. And if you someone who just doesn’t feel like eating breakfast, its most likely because you haven’t been for ages and now your body has adapted to this habit.

Therefore, you want to be sure to start your day off right with a large glass of water and a nutrient dense breakfast within an hour of waking. Choose a metabolism boosting meal that consists of three things: fiber-rich carbohydrates for quick energy, lean protein to promote fullness, and some healthy fats to keep you feeling satisfied.

Avoid eating processed carbohydrates without any protein or good fat for breakfast. For example, avoid sugary cereals or heavily processed baked goods.  A nutrient depleted type of breakfast such as these will only spike your blood sugar levels, making it easier for your body to store fat and your energy levels to decline shortly after. As a trainer, I get a lot of people telling me that they don’t have time to eat breakfast. The truth of the matter is that there is ALWAYS time to eat something. You just have to make it a priority.

Here are 4 of my favourite breakfast recipes for your enjoyment:

Gluten Free Pancakes

Peanut Butter Chocolate Smoothie

Quinoa Oatmeal

Very Berry Smoothie

Enjoy!

Olivia :)

Screen Shot 2015-03-20 at 3.19.27 PM

0 Continue Reading →

Do You Really Matter?

People take different roads seeking fulfillment and happiness.For most the journey can be a very difficult one, filled with unexpected twists and turns.
There are countless self-help books and ‘how to be happy’ guides that simply don’t apply. One size just doesn’t fit all. That’s not how life works.
“The deepest desire of the human spirit is to be acknowledged.” Stephen Covey
Though it’s been said many times, the first step should be to shift your focus within. 

Too many of us seek external fulfillment. And yes, I’m talking about the “people pleasers”, “work-aholics” and “shop-aholics” alike. In some ways, they are working so much harder to get the world to show them that they matter. It can be so much easier. Allow me to elaborate:

You can be an amazing mom, incredibly supportive sister, role model for others, dependable co-worker, fantastic friend etc. There are so many scenarios that involve receiving reassurance and affirmation that you really are making a difference in someone’s life.

And, of course, there is nothing wrong with that.
But, what happens when situations change, as they often do over the course of time?

You may end a relationship, move away from friends or family, switch jobs, or your kids grow-up and move out, etc.. Again, so many scenarios that involve change.
As much as we hope for consistency and stability, life is rarely that predictable.

In order to adapt to these various life situations, we must first change our perceptions.

Instead of putting value on how people see us, our many performance benchmarks, our status, or monetary wealth; why not first seek to understand how we can better ourselves from the inside?

Who doesn’t love 3 easy steps?!
Step 1) Help contributeLove Yourself to your self-nurturing abilities, by learning to appreciate what you’ve done thus far; cut yourself some slack. Forgive yourself for your mistakes (we all make them) and become less dependent on others for approval and acceptance.
Step 2) Develop a deep sense of security and integrity. It is the foundation of who you are and it should not change. Ever! Think of this as your moral compass, your guide (some may call it: “that gut feeling). Embrace it, as it will likely always point you in the right direction.
Step 3) Remind yourself (daily, ladies!) that you truly do matter. Not because someone has assigned you a job title, or made you a promise, or for any other reason in the world than you believe it. And if you’re not ready for this step, because you’re just not convinced, go back to Step 1 after you say this out loud:”There is noone, and I mean nobody like me in this world! I am going to learn how to love myself so fu$%ing much that the world has no choice but to follow my lead!”
Guest Writer
1 Continue Reading →

This Is How Water Can Change Your Life

If you are my client or if you have been reading these blogs lately, you know that I never shut up about the importance of drinking more water. And I am still really serious about it. I will probably never get bored of talking about it either:)

Why? Well… with our busy, hectic, over scheduled lives, most of us tend to get dehydrated without even knowing it. We have long, demanding days that can result in the lack of proper nourishment, rest, and play leaving us feeling less then energetic and motivated to exercise and eat well.

It is really important to MASTER THE FUNDAMENTALS of our health by first and foremost drinking more water throughout the day.

There are so many good reasons to drink water but here are just a few:

  • Clears Skin
  • Boosts Immune System
  • Helps with Digestion
  • Reduces Inflammation
  • Is A Natural Energy Booster
  • Boosts Metabolism
  • Flushes Out Toxins and Waste
  • Natural Energizer
  • Improves Mood
  • Helps Prevent Disease
  • Ensures Proper Regularity

 

Needless to say, we could all benefit from drinking more water. I get my ladies of the Empowered Fit Club  to drink up to 3 litres per day. So, if there was only one healthy habit I could recommend for you to begin today, it would be to drink a LARGE glass of water first thing in the morning before anything else. Most people are “backed up” and mistake being tired and hungry for dehydration. Being dehydrated slows down your metabolism and the process of burning fat. So truly, if you want to be fit and healthy and feel your absolulte best, DRINK UP:)

Tips for Drinking More Water:

  • Drink a glass of water as soon as you wake up in the morning (can add lemon for extra Vitamin C and detoxifying benefits).
  • Carry a water bottle with you are all times, at work, at home, even if you are just out running a few errands.
  • Download and use an app on your mobile phone to track your water intake or simply set an alert on your phone to remind you.
  • When you are beginning to get hungry, start with a glass of water before you reach for the snack. A lot of the time, feelings of hunger are actually your body telling you that it’s thirsty. Water can help curb cravings too!

 

But what if you don’t like the taste of water or you get bored easily? Try adding some delicious infused water to you daily routine. The combinations and flavours are truly endless and everyone who tries them will love it.

How to Make Infused Water Recipes:

For infused water, there really is no one recipe. There are no right or wrong measurements or combinations, it’s all based on taste, preference and what you have in your kitchen.

Generally, I just add all of the ingredients to my pitcher or jar (or glass), slightly mashing up any fruit to release their juices. Next I add the leaves of any herbs I want to you. Finally, I top with some filtered water and enjoy! I find letting it sit in the fridge for an hour or so really allows the flavors to mesh together. The longer it sits, obviously the better and stronger the flavor will be.

Check out some of these amazing combinations:

water

Also, try to select fresh organic produce and herbs whenever possible, you want your ingredients to be pesticide-free. More on why organics are important here.

Infused waters can be stored in airtight jars or pitchers as shown above, mason jar, glass pitcher, water bottle, gallon jug, etc. Whatever works for you. Infused waters keep in the refrigerator for about a week or until the flavor is no longer present. I tend to drink and add more water to replace the water I just poured out, adding more fruit or flavors as necessary, until it just no longer has a pronounced flavor.

Let me know how you make out.

I hope it is super delicious and that you reap the cleansing and nourishing benefits;)

Much love,

Olivia Keane;)

2 Continue Reading →

6 Ways to Boost Your Energy NOW

We all know what it is like to feel the complete all out energy drain – that exhausted feeling where no matter what exciting thing you have planned, you simple can’t get yourself to physically do anything.

If this sounds familiar, rest assured. Energy suckers are all around us, some being more obvious than others. The good thing is that there are many ways around a lot of them.

Try one, two, or all 6 of these and you are bound to see your energy levels kick up a notch!

DRINK MORE WATER 

It’s 2:30 p.m., and you’re nodding off. What should you do? First, try drinking a large glass of water.  Feeling tired can be a sign of dehydration and when you are dehydrated, you slow down your body’s process of burning fat.

Anyone who has worked with me knows that I never stop talking about the need for us all to drink more water. I truly believe it is the simplest, most fundamental things we must master, like drinking water, that can make the biggest difference in how we look and feel.

POWER SNACK

Power snacking is more than just eating between meals. Fuelling your body with a simple, healthy snack that combines protein, good fats and some fibre can really help to perk up your energy. The carbs offer a quick pick-me-up, the protein keeps your energy up, and the fat helps you feeling full and satisfied. By snacking in between meals you are much less likely to binge eat later on in the evening as your energy will be more consistent and sustained throughout the day.

Some of my favourites include cut up veggies dipped in hummus, apple and almond butter or a power packed smoothie.

 GET MOVING OUTSIDE 

While it may seem that moving your body when you are drained is the fasted way to feeling more tired, the opposite can be true. Especially when it comes to doing something light and refreshing, like walking or spending time in nature.

Walking, even around the block at work a few times is accessible, simple and you don’t need a gym or fancy equipment to do it. In the end, the magic is all in the doing. It doesn’t have to be some crazy 2 hour gym workout to make you feel better.

DON’T SKIP BREAKFAST

Your mother was right. Breakfast is the most important meal of the day. Eating a healthy breakfast helps to set the tone for the rest of the day so pick something packed with protein, good carbs and healthy fats.

Try one of my favourite smoothie recipes for a quick and easy delicious breakfast: BERRY DELIGHT

EAT LESS SUGAR 

The key here is to keep your blood sugar balanced so that your energy remains constant.

By eating foods high in sugar, you get a spike in blood sugar, which gives you an initial burst of energy. However, this is always followed by a rapid drop in blood sugar, which in turn can leave you feeling very wiped out.

REDUCE STRESS AND ANGER 

One of the biggest energy suckers is stress. Stress is usually a by product of anxiety and anxiety is a killer when it comes to your energy and mood.

Like worry or fear, stress can leave you feeling mentally and physically wiped out – even if you’ve spent the day in bed.

We have all been there before. On top of this, unexpressed anger can take a huge hit on our energy levels when we are expending all of our energy trying to contain our angry feelings, which can be utterly exhausting.

If you can’t ultimately eliminate the source of stress right away (job, relationship, conflict etc.), schedule and make your self-care regime a priority. I like taking baths, talking to a good friend on the phone or curling up into bed and getting as much sleep as possible in order to better manage stress or conflict that life inevitably will present.

I hope that was helpful:)

Are there any things you do that really help boost your energy? I would love to know. Leave me a comment!

Much love,

Olivia :)

Screen Shot 2015-02-24 at 2.46.09 PM

3 Continue Reading →

How to Be Healthy When You Have No Time

We all know by now that living an active healthy lifestyle should be one of our top priorities in life. We are well aware that only by taking good care of ourselves do we stand a chance of being the kind of woman we strive to be at work, with our significant others, our children and in our communities. However, that does not mean that it’s easy, especially within our busy schedules.

Work, especially, can get in the way of our fitness and working out—in fact, there is a big paradox going on, and it becomes more obvious the more challenging and fulfilling a job becomes: On one hand, we struggle to find time to work out; on the other, we can’t afford to not exercise because it is such an important part of our sustained success and happiness.

I have found the best success if you first and foremost MASTER THE BASICS and foundations to a healthy happy life. I love the saying “get healthy to lose weight, don’t lose weight to get healthy.” This is so key for us

ladies and represents a much more effective, sustainable and enjoyable approach to getting fit.

A couple DEAD SIMPLE things to be on top of to master your health in this week’s episode:

Here is the download recipe and one day meal guide sample: Chocolate Berry Smoothie Download

You were meant to feel and look amazing! We must first get our minds into the game and then take inspired action.

Your turn. Do you have any SIMPLE, effective health tips that you believe and fundamental to being fit and healthy? Please leave us a comment. Would love to hear your thoughts. I am sure we will have some common threads here.

That’s all for now! Stay tuned for my next video on strategies to fitting in workouts when your too busy.

Much love,

Olivia;)

0 2 Continue Reading →

 

Recent Comments by Olivia