Guest Blog: Tandy from PimpYourMat.com

Sophie and I have known each other for seven years now. A trip in the way back machine places us as trainers and regional manager for Equinox Fitness in sunny SoCal. Long before babies and husbands and our entrepreneurial spirits fully blossomed. In the time we have known each other we have run strangely parallel paths: each having two young boys under the age of 8, incredibly supportive and involved husbands and a clear passion/drive for sharing how to get healthy from the inside out.

 



Sophie asked me to guest blog and share my story and what I do and why.  I launched a subscription based lifestyle website February 2013. I had gone from full time working momma (teaching, training, Regional Pilates Manager at Equinox SoCal), to part-time working momma (training via Skype and traveling to teach workshops) to full time stay-at-home-momma, to I-want-to work-and-have-more-to-give-to-the-world-but-don't-want-to-be-away-from-my-boys very much. So, my husband and I created www.PimpYourMat.com. My subscription based website where I post a fresh 30 minute pilates based workout every three days that is stashed in your account to go back to for the lifetime of your subscription, over 300 dairy and gluten free recipes, the PYM Food Reset and access to me as your actual coach and trainer to go to for modifications, adjustments, motivation and support. Pimp Your Mat solved our family’s needs and the needs of every other busy person who is trying to stay or get balanced and fit in a tech savy, time efficient, budget honoring, intelligent fitness way. You have direct access to me via my Facebook Fan Page @PimpYourMat or email. I shoot 30-minute workouts from home (or if I'm traveling...on the road), I edit and upload to the site myself.


Whew. That's a lot. Now, other than it just making sense, being creative and still wanting to be able to pick-up, drop-off and make snacks for my kids why did we create PYM?


Because people think fitness and wellness is difficult and time consuming. Because people think getting healthy is hard, because I’ve spent 15 years in the fitness industry, many of those years with a 'dirty little secret' of being physically fit and lean but internally quite a health mess.


From the age of 18 I had thyroid nodules that kept multiplying. I had chronic fatigue, anxiety, panic attacks, chronic sinus infections, acne, mysterious belly bloating, gas, pain and lets just say it, chronic diarrhea.


I went to doctors and I went to therapists. I went to every alternative practitioner I could find or afford and they all basically told me I was 'stressed'. Um. Okaaaaaay. Seriously? Yes, I was a living, working person in the world but I loved the things I did and at my ‘gut’ level knew that was not the culprit. I didn't accept that answer ever. I didn't even accept it when they handed me antidepressants. I was busy but internally happy and thought, this is crap. I don’t feel well but not because my ‘head’ is wrong because something in my belly/system is causing the veil I felt like I was wearing on my vibrancy.


I was convinced it was food and self-care related and embarked on any and all variations of food, wellness regimes I could. God help my husband who stood by me at each variation and step. It was not easy on me but no easier on him as I sifted through regime after regime.


I had periods of time I was healthier in the inside, but I was never 'well'. I always required more down/recovery time then the people I was surrounded by and some symptoms just never went away. (Panic attacks, anxiety, acne and diarrhea was still the big kicker) I just 'managed' them, didn't address them and quit discussing or thinking about my internal health. I figured if I looked fit, that was enough. Most people didn’t even have that.


Fast forward to having my second son. The nodules on my thyroid had multiplied to total 9. One was actually bigger than my thyroid itself and my latest thyroid panel showed my TSH at less then  .0001. Let's just say that's really not what you want. Your endocrine system kind of regulates everything and if your thyroid 'burns out' of hormone your entire system can shut down. I had started having symptomatic 'stuff' that includes mild tremors, more frequent panic attacks, extreme fatigue and bouts of mild depression. I was having what they call small thyroid ‘storms’. I was scared for myself and I was even more scared for my kids. If I couldn't figure out what was going on with me how was I going to protect, teach and raise my children to be healthy and fit?


So, I put my momma warrior on and thought if this were happening to my kid what would I do? I needed to do that for myself.


I had my thyroid removed. For me, it was the right choice. At the rate it was going it wasn’t going to ‘last’ my lifetime anyhow and we were basically short-cutting the step of letting it burn out. I embarked on a lifetime of chemical meds to replace my little butterfly organ and marched towards writing my own food reset.  I knew my 'stuff' was food related. I have always believed you are what you eat and that your gut instincts are usually right. I believed, as I still do, that food is fuel and beautifully nourishing and absolutely healing. I had always eaten 'healthy' but the truth was it wasn’t working for me. I devoured food sensitivity, intolerance, leaky gut, celiac and thyroid dysfunction articles and books. I relentlessly searched symptoms in effort to put connecting pieces together and chatted with my endocrinologist about my suspicions. I took blood tests, skin tests and elimination diets and cleanses. In the mix of it all, I cracked my own code and saw very clearly how others could figure out the ‘perfect’ fit to balance their own systems.

 

My discoveries were that certain things absolutely didn’t work for me not matter how many articles said they were ‘packed with nutrients’ and ‘good’ or ‘best’ for your health.


My first step was to remove gluten. Although I had been tested for it and all tests always came back negative, I removed it from my diet and immediately (within 4 days) had a solid bowel movement. Gross, I know but bowel movements truly are the sign of your internal health. Wish is knew THAT fact much earlier in life. And I thought ‘AHA!’ This is it! I ditch gluten and the world is my Oyster! Not Quite.

 

I eliminated gluten and continued to eat things that were supposedly healing and healthy but things just didn't totally 'fix' and then went through a period of time where things got worse. Back to the drawing board. More reading, more experimenting. I knew Gluten was out but was becoming suspicious of nuts, nightshades and a myriad of other foods and ingredients. I kept thinking perhaps EVERYTHING was cross-contaminated with gluten, but no, I was actually not responding to many other things just as I had suspected, nuts, seeds, nightshades, any grain fed animal, ‘natural flavorings’ and ‘artificial flavors’, legumes and all grains plus any dairy containing casin. I went in a thoughtful and methodical way to research everything that was a possible gut irritant and took them all out. I kept in foods that I had researched to be healing and non-irritating to the digestive tract and easy to absorb nutritionally. I also researched how to get the most nutrients out of your foods, cooked or raw, and created a balanced map that had me feeling better than I EVER thought possible.


The research I did ended up becoming the PYM Food Reset. Within 21 days I had identified more foods that were triggers for my sensitive belly then in my entire lifetime! I felt empowered, vibrant, rested and above all armed with a road map for myself. It was absolutely about me, my system and what it responded to. Not what anyone else said it should be. Custom built by my own belly for wellness and fitness. I felt like a super hero when I eat the foods that I know work for me. Still do!


Pimp Your Mat.com is not just about pilates. PYM is about getting to your most vibrant and balanced self and working with your own needs and responses. Learning what works and doesn’t work for your body regardless of what any doctor, therapist, specialist, nutritionist or dietician says. PYM is about taking things at your own pace with a clear path to consistent health. PYM is about balance and real, busy lives and it’s about listening to your gut and getting connected to your own self. How do you approach your days, your weeks and years and how many of those do you enjoy and experience to the fullest, undistracted and unencumbered by the ailments, sounds and ‘funky bits’ of your body


I believe each body requires a little something different in order to thrive. I believe and know you can 'crack your own code' with the PYM Food Reset in a short and simple amount of time minus a ton of pricey testing (which I've done and you should do if you think you have genuine health issues triggered by food, but those don't always give you functional answers or real life help. ALL of my testing came back negative. I never did and still do not have any food allergies. I have however been diagnosed by my General Practitioner and Endocrinologist with Celiac based on my reactions to gluten).


Since doing my own food reset I know what sets my system off. I'm not perfect and I still trip up, but I am healthier than I've ever been, I'm no longer crazy fatigued or have to take a nap every afternoon with my boys (ok, sometimes I still so cause they are wonderfully snuggly and only small for so long). I no longer have panic attacks and I do not present the same extreme level of anxiety I used to. I feel safe in my body and generally happy, capable and vibrant in the world and above all capable of caring, teaching and raising my children to listen to their systems to create the highest health for themselves.


Our wellness and fitness is not just about our vanity. It's about our longevity and quality of life. PYM is my way of being there for those who don’t yet have a calm, balanced, healthy experience in their body. PYM is what I wished was around for me when I was going through my experience. I believe fitness and wellness should be about being of service and usefulness to the world we live in and the people we care about.

 

There are so many things in life to experience and I’ll be damned if I’m going to miss out on it because I was eating things the general world told me were healthy but simply not a fit for my personal system.


Pimp Your Mat is about marching to your own drummer, no excuses, 30 minutes a day of pilates based workouts on the mat, 2-6 days a week, gorgeous, simple, quick whole foods and increasing the fun you have in life because you’re body is in it’s sweetest balance of strength and flexibility. PYM is about hormone balance to allow your body to loose weight, gain muscle, create a healthy blood pressure and cholesterol levels without medications.


We all know we 'should' address our health and fitness but what we don't always know is our why or how.

My 'Why's' are named Milo, Sam and Mateo. My children and husband are more gorgeous and powerful teachers than I ever could have imagined and I want to be the most I can be, for them.


The 'How' is getting on the mat with pilates based workouts that balance your body with equal length and equal strength without over-taxing or ‘burning’ out your system. Balance brings your optimal body and results. Strength and length. Activity and Rest. Food and Hydration. Pimp Your Mat teaches and guides you through all those steps in a fun, simple, calm manner. PYM is $32 a month to have me as your pocket trainer and coach via any Wi-Fi connection to calmly and consistently balance your body, teach you how to listen and connect with your own system without it getting 'sleepy' or lame. Plus, PYM has a thriving community of ambassadors and subscribers world wide that all support and motivate each other along their wellness journey via the Pimp Your Mat Fan Page on Facebook.

 

 

Pimp Your Mat is a virtual, boutique online studio. I know my subscribers by name, their stories, their wins and fails. I’m in it with them. Everyday. I want to be an advocate for all those who feel lost along their fitness way and for others to know they don’t have to be at the mercy of their bodies. You can be fit and well without beating up your body.

 

Whether your interested in the workouts, the food, the reset or me, it’s all there at www.pimpyourmat.com when you want it.


If you're interested in getting on the mat with me, I offer Philosophie’s fans and followers a 30 day gift code you can activate anytime you’d like to test drive the site. Just reach out to me at Tandy@pimpyourmat.com or the Facebook Fan Page PimpYourMat

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Green Simple Salad Recipe

Hi loves! How are you feeling? Have you checked in with yourself lately? Take some time to really scan over your entire body and see where you may need some more attention. Take some time to really care for yourself and give yourself a little more love. Only until our own needs are taken care of and we’re completely full and balanced then we can fully give to others.

One way I love giving myself all I need is by fueling my body with whole, balanced meals loaded with superfoods and nutrients. This green salad is so simple that you can make it for an easy meal prep or when you only have a small break for lunch. It’s loaded with delicious veggies like carrots and radishes and is topped with Green Dream Superfood + Protein Blend for a delicious boost of spirulina and hemp.

Eat your colors, always!


Gather This:

1 bag mixed greens

2-3 sliced radishes

3 carrots, shaved

1 tsp Green Dream Superfood + Protein Blend

A sprinkling  of sesame seeds or nori


DRESSING:

1/2 cup unsweetened coconut yogurt

1 tsp turmeric

1 tsp Green Bee Honey

A chopped clove of garlic


Do This:

Place greens on the plate, slice radishes lengthwise and shred carrots (a peeler is great for that!) then add a dash of Green Dream Superfood + Protein Blend. In a separate bowl, combine all dressing ingredients and mix well. Toss on optional sesame seeds + nori and dress to your liking!



What are your favorite superfood salads you make to power you through the day? Share yours with me on Facebook using #PhilosophieSuperfoods or #PhilosophieLove

Iced Apple Cider Recipe

As the season softly changes from summer to fall, we wanted to bring out one of our favs over here at Philosophie HQ. This is the best afternoon superfood sipper while the weather is still warm and sunny over in LA but you’re dreaming of cozy sweater weather. This high vibe beverage can easily transition from a hot to a cold drink depending on your mood!

This take on a traditional apple cider has all the best fall spices with our Cacao Bee Honey for a delicious energy boost and nutrients. Drink it iced for a cool + refreshing burst of energy while enjoying the vibrant, cozy flavor profile. This cooling cup of cider has added benefits of being super healing and immune-boosting because it's full of vitamin C, vitamin K, magnesium, calcium and fiber!


Gather This:

5 apples (juiced; Granny Smith apples make a deliciously tart juice while Gala apples make a sweeter juice!)

1 orange (juiced)

5 whole cloves

5 cinnamon sticks

5 whole cardamom pods

2 star anise

1/2 to 1-inch piece of fresh ginger (grated; amount based on how spicy you like it)

½ tsp fresh lemon zest

1 tbsp Cacao Bee Honey

ice (6 cubes per glass)


Do This:

Add the orange juice, cloves, cinnamon sticks, cardamom pods, star anise, ginger, lemon zest, and manuka honey in a saucepan (feel free to play around with the amount of spices to get it to your liking!). Cover and heat on medium-low heat for about 15-20 minutes. Remove from heat for 15 minutes, add the fresh apple juice, and then strain. Pour into your favorite glass, toss in some ice, add a straw, and ENJOY! Leave out the ice if you want it warm!

What superfood drinks do you enjoy as during the season shift? Share yours with me on Instagram using #PhilosophieSuperfoods or #PhilosophieLove

HOTW: Mindfulness Techniques w/ Kids

Adi and I had the privilege to sit down and talk to Ashley Graber on this week’s IGNTD podcast all about mindfulness. (Listen to the talk here!) We got into all of it! From mindfulness tips expecting mamas can do to carry mindfulness way beyond the womb into your home. Tips for creating space to come together as a family and how to live more mindfully, even as a kid!

Anyone who knows me and follows me on social media knows I’m all about being a mindful and present mama and I’ve tried to instill the same practice in my boys. Noa will get there, but she’s only 4 months! It’s so hard to get the boys to stay still and focus inward. They love going to yoga and meditating with me when there are no distractions. Still, when you’re growing + experiencing this vast world the emotions that come in can be a LOT and having the tips + tools Ashley gave us on the podcast will be AMAZING to implement into our lives.

Photo courtesy of Energy Muse

One of the biggest tools she advised to try out was creating a Mind Jar. A mind jar/clarity jar is a physical tool that can allow kids to concentrate on their emotions and practice peace and stillness for merely a minute.

Ashley explains, “the jar represents the mind, the glitter represents thoughts, feelings, and physical sensations. When we shake it up this represents when we are overwhelmed, stressed, upset, and/or overly excited to the point that we cannot see clearly. Our perception becomes cloudy. We can be more "reactive" to life from this place, as opposed to "responsive". It can feel like there is a storm inside and unsteady. To help balance and steady ourselves we can practice coming to our senses...literally...with focusing on one of our senses.”

Ashley advises to label each glitter with an emotion, making it super fun to come up with them together and have the discussion about why each color represents that particular emotion. Here’s how to make your own.

Gather This:

Jar with a good lid (i.e. mason jar)

Hot + cold water

Glitter of different sizes (larger & fine) + different colors (for different emotions)

Glitter Glue

 

Do This:

Put a generous amount of glitter glue in the jar. Add just enough hot water to cover the glue and shake up to break up the glitter glue then add cold water almost about ¾ of the way to the top. Next, add glitter of the desired color and different sizes. Fill with cold water to the top and SHAKE. Time it to see how slow or fast it settles and adjust accordingly. It should take 1 minute to settle and become clear again. If it’s too fast add glitter glue + hot water. If it’s too slow, pour out some of the water and add fresh cold water.

NOTE: Do not use red glitter – it stains the water

The important thing is that this mind jar it’s not to be used as punishment or suggested at a time when you, as a parent, are reactive and frustrated. We discussed using it at the dinner table when you’re gathered as a family or right before bedtime to relax your kiddos. Light some palo santo, sit together as a family, and have each kid take turns shaking the jar.

Besides this super awesome mind jar technique, we’ve also begun using a Feelings Wheel in our home. You can find the photo below on Google here or print it out from this post. We tape it to our fridge and whenever either of the kids is going through some particularly rough and are having trouble communicating what’s going on inside them then they can look to the wheel. Being able to label what may be going on inside them is already settling and makes the problem easier to manage. It helps us too! Sometimes we just need to say out loud that “I’m frustrated” or “I’m feeling abandoned” it makes the emotion manageable.

Being mindful doesn’t mean you need to do yoga every day, meditate for two hours and travel all over the whole on soul-searching retreats. Sometimes it’s as simple as breathing slowly for 5 minutes, or labeling what each wave of emotion you’re feeling, or making a jar full of glitter and shaking it up.


How do you practice mindfulness in your day-to-day? If you have kids, what tools do you use to teach them mindfulness? Share with me on Twitter using #PhilosophieLove or #MyPhilosophie.

Green Dream Sushi Recipe

When we say you can use Philosophie superfoods in everything, we really mean EVERYTHING! We decided to whip up some fun Green Dream sushi rolls that you can make for a fun family dinner or make to pack in your lunch. So good at any time of the day when you’re craving some high vibe sushi.

These rolls are loaded with carrots, Tamari (GF), Primal Kitchen Mayo (our fav!), and Green Dream Superfood + Protein Blend, of course! Our Green Dream protein blend is entirely vegan and truly gives you the nutrient boost you need to power you through the day.

It’s the sushi roll you’ve always dreamed about, but at half the price!

Gather This:

2 nori wraps

3 organic carrots (grated)

1 tbsp Primal Kitchen Mayo

1 tsp chili pepper (optional)

1 tbsp Tamari (gluten-free soy sauce)

1 tsp Green Dream Superfood + Protein Blend

Do This:

Grate the carrots and place a nori sheet on a flat surface. Add about 3/4 of a cup of the grated mixture going lengthwise. Combine Primal Kitchen Mayo and the chili pepper paste then stir, adding a dollop on top of the carrots. Add a sprinkle of Green Dream Superfood + Protein Blend and roll up! Top with Tamari or fresh ginger! Cut and dig in!

What new + creative ways do you use Philosophie superfoods in your lunches and dinners? Share with me on Facebook using #PhilosophieSuperfoods or #MyPhilosophie.

Easy Dinner Hack + Summers to Savor Cookbook

Hi loves! I wanted to brighten up your week with a helpful dinner hack + cookbook obsession I’ve been loving lately. If you’re anything like me, your days are completely filled up then all of a sudden it’s 6pm and you have hangry kids running around asking about dinner. I’d love to say that it rarely happens to me, that I plan out dinners for the whole week, but that’s just not real and any mama out there can relate. Pretty much anyone with a career, relationships, and a breathing soul can relate!

That’s why it’s so important to turn to recipes that you can always pull out at the drop of a hat. Some of my go-to’s are a simple soup dish using leftover veggies and a delicious broth or a potato, veggie + protein dish with extra superfoods (of course!). So simple! Always try to fill plates with color and you’ll be good to go. It doesn’t have to be a perfect, picture-worthy meal, just one that’s tasty and extra nourishing.

You may have seen my last post using Dr. Praeger’s Kale Veggie Burgers for some BOMB veggie wraps. I was so in love with the dish and ingredients used that I decided to look into more from them and found an amazing cookbook, Summers to Savor created + crafted by entrepreneur mama, Brenna Praeger. She truly understands that there’s just not enough time in a day and you need a reliable recipe you can depend on when days get busy and it’s already dinnertime.

It has so many SIMPLE and nourishing meals for moms, dads, and the kiddos. Whether you’re making something for yourself, for your boo, or maybe for the whole fam there are endless recipe options. All of them are filled with nutrient-dense ingredients and are perfect for feeding + nourishing growing bodies. We decided to make the Sweet Potato Grilled Cheese Waffles and they were SO good! I love the Kid’s Table section - so many fun recipes and Kai can help me make them (even better!).

The cookbook is all about transitioning your summer foods to fall. It’s so beautiful + inspiring. I highly recommend, especially if you love enjoying summer flavors all year around. I partnered with Dr. Praeger's for an exciting GIVEAWAY. Two lucky winners will receive Dr. Praeger’s new cookbook, Summers to Savor, and coupons for five free products! All you need to do is follow @drpraegers and @sophie.jaffe on Instagram and share your favorite easy-to-make recipe on my latest Instagram post for a chance to win. Winners will be chosen on Friday, Oct. 12thGOOD LUCK BABES!

What are some of your superfood dinner hacks when you’re in need of a quick meal? Share with me on Twitter using #MyPhilosophie or #PhilosophieLove.

Welcoming the New Moon in Libra

We have officially entered Libra season - the season of balancing and realigning to our true selves. It’s a delicious time. The seasons change. The weather cools. Collectively, we feel the need to nest and make room for the things that truly bring us warmth and joy in our lives. The New Moon on the 8th is a beautiful time to set intentions for the new season and really begin some serious manifestation.

Venus also went into retrograde on the 5th and will stay there for 40 days. It’s a great time to connect to all of your relationships, romantic or otherwise, in a more authentic and honest way. Our sensuality is heightened, as well as a deeper understanding of love and our intuition. Our heart centers are open and vulnerable. Really take the time to center that energy + calm intensifying emotions. It’s a delicate time, but also a delicious time to reconnect with those who matter in your life.

October is all about your inner balance and strength. How can you turn inward and focus on using yourself for stability rather than depending on others? By connecting with your true selves and follow your intuition, you’ll be living mindfully and following a grounding life full of abundance and peace.

It’s all there, inside you. You have to dig deep and unlock your inner courage, wisdom, creativity, kindness and compassion. Begin a grounding practice and physically go outside, barefoot, and connect with the Earth. Allow yourself to breathe and focus inward. From this grounding, you’ll be able to show up to yourself and follow a more present and mindful life. It’s all about that balance. The balance between living and existing, between the divine masculine and the divine feminine, between giving and receiving, it shows up in every aspect of our lives.

Take this next cycle to find where you may need balance in your life and put in the work to realign it.

New Moon in Libra

We have a New Moon in Libra on the 8th. This moon is all about finding harmony within, then bringing that internal stability to all areas of your life - your relationships, work, etc. Libra is the sign of justice, ready to stand up and fight for our beliefs. In this delicate political season, it’s SO important to speak your truth and raise your voice. We need more of us standing together. Only as a large collective unit of female voices can we truly make a difference.

 This New Moon is all about connecting with our inner peace so we can physically and mentally prepare for balance shifts in the Universe. Take the time to return to your center and vision a future you hope to create + manifest.

Welcome the New Moon with Palo Santo for energy clearing before an intuition setting practice, meditation or moon circle. Bring out your favorite moon card deck (like The Moon Deck) for inspiring thoughts + emotions that are ready to come to the surface.

Take some time to journal with the following prompts:

A New Moon is a time to reset intentions for a new cycle ahead. What intentions do you want to cultivate at this moment? They can be physical, mental, emotional or spiritual.

The New Moon phase is a time to attract new people into your life, begin new projects, interview for jobs and invoke more clarity and spirituality in situations in your life. Where can you re-evaluate and plant new seeds?

Libra is all about balance. Love, partnership, harmony, diplomacy, beauty and legal matters in general. Where can you examine the work you need to do in these areas of your life? Where can you bring more balance into friendships, relationships in general, partnerships?

Love yourself, deeply. Take the day slowly and be kind to emotions that continue to rise + fall within you.

How are you honoring tonight’s New Moon? Share your intentions with me on Facebook using #PhilosophieLove or #MyPhilosophie.

 



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