Get the addiction out of your life. The more you eat, the more you crave. Make it a gradual change, limit the sugars slowly. It will be hard at first, but the longer you go without it the longer you can BE without it and end your cravings all together.
GIVE ME THAT OLD SCHOOL LOVE Sarah Orbanic Photography
Looking back on the last few years of my life, nothing great was ever accomplished without me taking a risk. I post on social media about dreaming with your eyes wide open; careful to pay attention to the details, and I recall mornings, days, evenings and falling asleep envisioning myself and where I wanted to be. Regardless of the size of any competition I would always see myself at the top, crossing the finish line, not stopping when it got tough. The power of your mind is so strong, I believe your mental mindset is more apparent than any physical strength you have. We give up 95% of the time because we allow our minds to argue with us. Its okay to be scared when prepping for any competition a new event, a new job or starting a business. My mom can testify the ridiculous phone call she would get literally seconds before ‘Go-Time’ of how I nervous I was. I love my mom because of the tough love. She never allows me to back down, just encourages me to calm down and reassures me that I am going to be fine. I want to make it very clear to you guys at you start thinking about 2014 to really start experiencing life. If you have goals stop waiting till next week or next month to start them, you’ll always stay in that pattern. In one year, what will you look back on your life and wish you would have started today. www.ashleyhorner.co
The ‘No Thank You’ Bite
In the grocery isles full of fruit snacks, pop-tarts, cookies, frozen pizzas and sugar loaded drinks. It is an uphill battle trying to get our kids to eat healthy. Regardless of how hard we try, they are exposed to so much junk. Companies have spent millions of dollars on marketing and have really hit a home run when they can even make Lucky Charms seem ‘healthy’ with ‘WHOLE GRAIN’ planted right on the front of the cereal box. Almost seems like we’ve lost the battle before its even began.
It might surprise you that if you were to open my pantry cabinets, you would find a box of Lucky Charms for Tripp and Cash, yes I don’t completely avoid foods like this for them. Tripp and Cash are 4 and 6 years old they are already understanding the importance of eating healthy for physical activity, to grow big and strong muscle. They get to have treats they love occasionally, its in their best interest they aren’t completely disconnect from these foods but I put them in a positive environment and they understand how to respect foods and balance them with nutrient rich foods.
I also have found success when taking them to the store with me, I put them in the cart and we pick out new fruits and veggies together, I let them pick out the ‘best’ one. They get to touch and smell the fruits and vegetables, again this is an opportunity for them to learn. Then when they see it on their lunch plate or snack plate they get excited because they picked it out; curiosity gets the best of them, its not a foreign food because it was already introduced to them.
We are always trying new foods, as parents we tend to already have the, ‘They won’t eat that’ mentality’. Stay open minded, and just because its not your favorite ‘healthy’ food doesn’t mean your child won’t like it. You don’t have the same tastebuds as them, and you shouldn’t predispose them of what they will like/dislike. We try something called the ‘No Thank You Bite’ especially for Tripp, he tries everything I put on his plate, with two big bites. If he doesn’t like it, he simply says ‘No Thank You’. This creates a no pressure environment and causes them to be open to new foods, instead of screaming at the sight of that unfamiliar food on their plate. You will be so surprised how many things they will end up liking! It incredible, and so much more positive then, EAT THIS NOW! Which creates tension and stress at the table.
Teach by example, don’t expect your kids to be eating steamed broccoli, when you’re munching on fried okra. Its not going to work like that, kids are smart, and they pick up on so much without a single word spoken. Lead by example, if you want to change our youth, diabetes, nutritional education and how our school lunches are being prepared then start now in the home and let your actions be seen.
I train there I am….
A typical rainy afternoon in Guam, I pull up to my beach side condo searching for a close parking spot. ‘Great!! Good day to come home with a car full of groceries’ I thought to myself as rain splattered across my windshield making it difficult to even see 20 feet in front of me. ‘All the good spots are taken again’, I mumbled quietly under my breath. I turned my head to look over my shoulder at Cash, my delightfully energetic 3 year old, sleeping soundly in his car seat. He obviously is in dream world with the slight smirk appearing across his face. Not having a choice in the matter I parked as close as I could. Everyone always carries at least 2 or more umbrellas in their vehicles in Guam, except me. Mine hangs upstairs right inside the front door, returning them to my car is something I had been meaning to do, but always forget until it rains of course then its only wishful thinking. Opening the back car door carefully placing Cash over my right shoulder, I grab my bag and my arm load of groceries and take a beeline across the grass up the stairs to my front door while my legs were reminding me of all the walking lunges I had done earlier that morning. Managing to keep the eggs from breaking and my sleeping toddler in his peaceful state, he rested on the couch next to the laundry that had been there for at least two days; possibly three. Groceries were being put where they belong, and I began the process of preparing my meals for tomorrow. The little quiet time I had, I was taking full advantage of it, and with the gloomy rain outside this Saturday I wanted nothing else then to take a cool shower and snuggle up with my little guy, turn on some Netflix, & veg out in front of the television. The thought crossed my mind for a short moment, but I knew if my meals were not prepared tonight I was only setting myself up for failure tomorrow. I train therefore I am steadfast, determined and confident in everything I do. With perseverance.
Being a mom is extremely busy. Being in control of our lives and not allowing our lives to control us by making the proper steps to be a healthy and fit family makes you even more busy. Put being a single mom on top of that the silent moments you have to yourself are few and far between and are much appreciated when granted. As women, we are strong, nurturing and attentive beings. We have individual characteristics that make us unique in our makeup. We have the ability to take control of our families and lead them down a healthier way of living. Having physical strength only enhances our mental strength and capacity to overcome any trials that may come our way. We must realize the ability we have to make a long and lasting impact on the loved ones in our life. Knowledge is so powerful, taking what you know and learned and teach it to our young will only create deeper roots for them to build their foundation on. My time throughout the course of a day is organized specifically on the needs of my family and profession. I’ve taken the things that are important to me and make it a top priority. Fitness and health is extremely important and I incorporate it into my life on a daily basis. With proper balance, my day gets exactly what it needs and I get exactly what I need out of my day. We are all given a specific amount of minutes and hours in the course of a day. No savings account for our time. Once its gone its gone. I choose to live life with a vengeance never taking a moment for granted and taking the path less traveled with a greater reward at the end of a hard days work. It’s easy for us to become lazy, apathetic and going with the flow of life. We are beautiful creatures with so much to give back to the world; we need to learn to give back in the right ways. Women of dignity and unbending principles are not just born; they are molded to become so.
Begin to look at your life and find the balance that works for you. Balance is a constant changing puzzle in your life depending on the moments. Its easy to get overwhelmed when we put too much on our plates, so start by letting go of obligations that aren’t propelling you forward with the goals that you have set and replace them with key factors that will only have a positive outcome for you and your family. Learn to love life and life will love you back, keeping our lives simple focused and purposeful.
Almost an hour has passed and my vegetables a chopped and prepared, my chicken breast baking in the oven is done and I’ve almost completed my coconut cinnamon cookies for my sons preschool class in the morning. I walk over nudging Cash as he begins to open his eyes offering him fresh carrot cucumber and apple straight from my juicer; a favorite of his for the past 3 weeks. The rain has passed and the scorching sun is dominating the skies. Lets go get your swim trunks on; I say to him cheerfully we need an afternoon spent at the beach.
I am a lover for life. The aura and energy that you get when you give expect little and love big. I have so many things to be thankful for; not for material matter although those things are great; rather experience the moment. Don’t get me wrong, we can easily appreciate the sleek styles and comforts that come in the box with a pair of Christian Louboutin Stilettos, sparkling water with dinner and the overpriced handbags we tote around with joy that inevitably end up in the trunks of our cars or the bottom of our closets with all the other ‘last season fashion’. When I speak of home I am referring to Guam. Where importance is set on family afternoons at the beach, Sunday morning Mass and the constant revolving fundraisers for off island medical expenses. My World in Guam is a lot different than living in the United States. I live in a little condo close to the water (Guam is only 2 miles wide and 30 miles long, so every place is ‘close to the water’) I drive a little 2 door manual shifter red car that I paid only 3,200 cash for. Indeed overpriced but the A/C is cold and I have a sweet little spoiler on the back. My car is considered a GUAM BOMB, not to be confused with a local alcoholic shot this is a favorite amongst the military in their late night off duty adventures. I buy my fish locally almost everyday. Its common to see fishing boats pulled off to the side of the road selling right out of the pacific just hours before buying it from them. I can go weeks without even opening my makeup bag and never even think twice about spending money on expensive hairstyling products. I have been traveling all across the U.S. now for about 8 weeks. Every 3-4 days I find myself setting at a different departure gate. You know you’re traveling a lot when the airport security and flight stewards know you on a first name basis. The lifestyle of ‘wanting’ is so toxifying and happens before we even realize it; people, material things, or any sustenance that can quickly seep into your life. I am ready to get back to Guam where material items are much much lower on the todum pole. I spend my days in worn out beach clothes, sand in my shoes, and catching gekoos with Cash. I spend the weekend nights listening to local bands and collecting hermit crabs my boys bring to me in delight. I look forward to running the soft sandy beaches once again without a single person sitting, standing, or laying in my way.
I live for the simplicity of life; I have a love for the beauty of nature. My heart full of compassion for others . Give me oranges not the orange truffle. I want a life in its purest form not composed by material objects; but moments that will last a lifetime in my soul but memories printed in heart.
I have nice things & enjoy them, but they are limited [by choice] in my life.
Clear your mind and focus on the one goal that you’ve set out to accomplish. Never let anything or anyone distract you from pressing onward. Become confident in everything, Giving back always. Grounded through all things, and stern through all trials-, Ashley Horner.
It’s important to me that I come into my own. Without influence. My goal is not to be like any particular person but to create my own path. There’s not a minute that goes by during the day that I’m not thinking of ways to make myself better. I have the desire to become more rounded as athlete and a model on every level in the fitness industry. I’m driven and focused in everything I do. I eat breath and live this life. It’s what I love it’s my passion. My purpose in this industry is to change lives, to lead them to a healthier overall well-being. Because of my purpose I am naturally driven, I see the bigger picture in the fitness industry. It is easy to motivate and inspire others without effort when you love and live the life you encourage to others. It just pours out of me even during moments of my everyday life. To be a motivator to others you don’t need to have ‘story’ or a crazy ‘transformation’ Simply taking the time and recognizing someone’s hard work is enough, can ignite their fire even more.
My name is Ashley Horner. I was born in the heart of Oklahoma. My Ethnicity is Native American having strong roots in the Choctaw tribe. A country girl being raised riding horses bare back around my parents multi acre ranch. No time or any interest of sitting in front of the television, there was never a need for a lot of inside toys, the back yard was my playground. Its where I ran around barefoot playing with animals, catching fireflies at night, and allowing my imagination to be free. An avid soccer player, I played all through my teens and in college playing for the ODP team (Olympic Development Program) and later with the Woman’s National Soccer Team. I always had a thicker athletic figure, thick legs and a great big booty. I was never one of the skinny girls and the closet thing I ever came to a date was my high school Spanish tutor every Thursday. I recall soaking my pillows with wasted tears after being rejected by the third guy I asked to Prom. I was shy and awkward being made fun of a little. I think we all were during our high school days. I had a turning point in my life that forever changed me. All it took was a small spark. It caught wind and turned into a bigger flame. It gave me that ‘alive’ feeling. I had been introduced and had fallen in love with fitness. I wanted to know everything about it. I wanted to immerse myself in it, I wanted to be it. I identified myself with the fitness world. For once I saw and felt that I could be strong have my thick legs and big butt and be beautiful. I found beauty in my strength and not just the scale fighting the battle of just trying to be thin. I wanted to share my passion with the world and that’s how it all began. The more it gave me the more I wanted to give back. I wanted to give back to others who share the same passion and the same Sisterhood.
I am a mom, I have two amazing boys who are my rock and continue to bless & amaze me everyday. They remind me to always have fun at fitness and living the fit lifestyle. I am also a single mom, so balance is critical in my life. Every moment has a purpose. We are given 1,440 minutes in a day, these minutes can not be put in a savings account and they don’t roll over to the next day, once that moment has passed we cant take it back. I live everyday with integrity and for a purpose. I am always finding that balance as it changes often with what seems to be going on in my life.
I am a ProFitness model , landing my pro card in the WBFF. It was an amazing moment and a feeling of accomplishment and success that I will never forget, knowing how hard I worked for it. I am also so fortunate to be a columnist for MMA UNCAGED and FIT & FIRM, now having a total of 3 columns. I am looking forward to 2013 and everything it holds. I am currently training for my first half Iron Man and then will be focusing on WORLDS in Las Vegas, mid August to compete for the WORLD TITLE with the WBFF organization.
THE GIRL FROM GUAM
There is something so mysterious about the ocean and the clear turquoise blue waters that frame the Island of Guam. As the waves continued to wash up onto the sandy beach I sat mesmerized by her beauty and power. Within an arms length, over a dozen of baby hermit crabs crawl around my toes. They pay no attention to my existence, as if I am apart of their land. The sun is peaking over the horizon as stand up and begin wading knee deep into the water. Already her exotic beauty encompasses me as I begin to immerse myself into a completely different world, and I am taken back. I step over the bright purple starfish scattered all along the ocean floor little curious neon fish brush against my leg as if to check me out and say good morning. No one is around for as far as I can see, just an old fisherman’s boat setting peacefully on the water. Pulling down my mask I take a deep breath and begin to swim out into the deep blue sea for some early morning cardio. I am the Girl from Guam.
We all have life experiences that change us, moments of clarifications that direct us to our paths and plant us in the present. I will always claim Guam as my home. Maybe Guam claimed me. It has taken a part of my heart and gave me life. I found myself here I trained with the land and fell in love with the mysteries of the ocean and the beauty that poured out in every direction I looked. I have heard myself referred to as the ‘girl from Guam’ I even overheard someone asking their friend, “Does she speak English?”
To set the record straight, my name is Ashley Horner. I am 27 years old and I was born in the heart of Oklahoma. My Ethnicity is Native American having strong roots in the Choctaw tribe. A country girl being raised riding horses bare back around my parents multi acre ranch. No time or any interest of sitting in front of the television, there was never a need for a lot of inside toys, the back yard was my playground. Its where I ran around barefoot playing with animals, catching fireflies at night, and allowing my imagination to be free. An avid soccer player, I played all through my teens and in college playing for the ODP team (Olympic Development Program) and later with the Woman’s National Soccer league. I always had a thicker athletic figure, thick legs and a great big booty. I was never one of the skinny girls and the closet thing I ever came to a date was my high school Spanish tutor every Thursday. I recall soaking my pillows with wasted tears after being rejected by the third guy I asked to Prom. I was shy and awkward being made fun of a little. I think we all were during our high school days. I had a turning point in my life that forever changed me. All it took was a small spark. It caught wind and turned into a bigger flame. It gave me that ‘alive’ feeling. I had been introduced and had fallen in love with fitness. I wanted to know everything about it. I wanted to immerse myself in it, I wanted to be it. I identified myself with the fitness world. For once I saw and felt that I could be strong have my thick legs and big butt and be beautiful. I found beauty in my strength and not just the scale fighting the battle of just trying to be thin. I wanted to share my passion with the world and that’s how it all began. The more it gave me the more I wanted to give back. I wanted to give back to others who share the same passion and the same Sisterhood.
You’re probably wondering how I ended up in Guam. Well, it took one person very close to me not believing in me. When you become so passionate about something, you dream about it every night and think about it as soon as you wake up. You begin to mold your life and build your foundation that will soon lay the bricks to your house. Hearing the sentences ‘you’ll never make it’ and ‘fail’ echoed in my ears. I had to make a choice that would forever change my life. I cleaned out my closet, packed my suitcase, kissed my mom goodbye, and watched as her SUV disappeared from the airport departure lane. Tears flowing down my cheek holding my sons hand tightly I turned and walked through those terminal gates. It felt like my heart was going to beat out of my chest. What then was the scariest decision of my life ended up being the best decision of my life! I found myself in Guam or maybe Guam found me. I learned that during your weakest hour you can prevail into greatness. I began to trust myself, let go of fear, and allowed my passion to take hold of my heart.
An hour has passed as I swim back towards the shoreline. Morning runners trickle by with their dogs as I wave and say, “Hafa Adai!” (have a good day, in Guam). The sun is already scorching and high humidity levels are raising quickly to her tropical year round temperatures.
I see my life a lot like the ocean in our similarities. That’s why I am drawn to her. Her persistent waves so calm on the surface yet so powerful underneath. Just by sitting and looking out into the skyline you can capture her beauty and her power can be felt. But the true beauty she holds is much deeper, into the depths of the ocean are her wonders, its there that her true beauty lies and is waiting to share with the world the depths of her soul.
I don’t need a lot of things in life, it may seem like it by way of image but I am a pretty low maintenance girl, give me a hot cup of coffee, a weekend camping or exploring new country sides this would most definitely outdo any fancy dinner or shopping spree. I love fresh markets, a good sweaty gym session and getting educated on taking care of my skin. (this topic is starting to come up a lot more in my world lately). In fact, I have learned that I am at my best when I follow the threesome rule. There are so many of you who are playing the single card and getting NOWHERE. Most of us feel satisfied with the twosome, but are you getting anywhere? I am going to tell you why I love threesomes. You will begin to see why 3 is a company that can stay a while.
When we think about overall health and getting ‘fit’ for the new year, we automatically think working out! I need to get to the gym to workout, cardio weights whatever it takes. First, ask your self are you interested or committed? There is a difference. Yes, the gym is a great way to start changing your lifestyle there are so many benefits such as lowering your risk for osteoporosis, it’s a stress reliever, time in the gym can help lower your blood pressure, strengthen your joints and most importantly it creates these incredible endorphins that helps you to be happy gives you that feel good sensation. I have never met a person at the gym who is grumpy. Working out creates such a positive environment for everyone around you. You don’t have to be getting ready for a bodybuilding show or a bikini T-walk, I have trained several business professionals and they are all around a happier person because they commit to that fit lifestyle. So maybe your goal isn’t to get onstage in that tiny suit, but working out in general creates a better happier successful you. In your personal life & professional life.
You want to eat what? You hear this so often, your abs are made in the kitchen not the gym! If you’ve heard it once you heard it a dozen times. Nutrition plays such an important role. Think of your body like a car, you wouldn’t put mud in your gas tank would you? NO of course not, you’d be calling for a tow-truck before you could even get out of the gas station parking lot. It is crucial that as you begin changing your lifestyle that you learn about proper nutrition a long the way. I cant tell you how many times I see someone walk straight from the gym to the burger king down the road. Come on! You cant just workout! You much learn the proper diet that goes a long the lifestyle of trying to be more fit. You will start feeling better, happier and more energetic. You will get over that afternoon lethargic drag and be peppy till you hear the work whistle blow.
If you are not sure about proper diet and nutrition, just start following these rules. ONE RULE- Clean eating. clean eating is anything from the earth, lean meats like chicken turkey, fish, bison, eggs and good fats like avocado, raw nuts, Salmon and good carbohydrates, oatmeal, brown rice, whole grains and the less processed the better. Sweet potatoes are another great form of carbohydrates and don’t forget all the veggies and fruit. I have noticed a huge difference in my skin since cutting out diary completely. Yes, even the greek yogurt that I love, I do not eat it as much as I used too and I have noticed brighter and smoother skin.
Last but not least, giving us that amazing threesome (I think of it like a triangle of love) Is skin care. Yes, our skin is nourished from the inside out however how are we taking care of our skin from the outside in? This does not mean you must go out and buy expensive face care product, its simply a reminder to start taking care of your skin washing moisturizing under the eye serum, its your canvas. I do naturally have dark skin tones, being Native American. I rarely burn unless I’m sitting in the Guam sunshine for hours. But I still remember to put sunscreen on. Girls!! learn how to fake it. They have some great sunless tanners available on the market. I have tried so many, and my favorite is Playboy Glitz spray on self tanner. Just Google this product, beautiful tan right in a bottle. Taking 5 minutes and care for your skin by making sure you’re washing your face at night and adding a simple moisturizer to you face will show years down the road. I know a few girls who will just fall asleep with their makeup on and wash it off when they shower in the mornings. Not a good idea, so much bacteria will begin to build up and not only on your face but on your pillow as well. GROSS. I make sure that even when I am not wearing makeup I bring the makeup wipes to the gym with me and after Im done sweating it out, I change into dry clothes and I bring the face cleansing towels with me to wipe my face off and add moisturizer. Girls, its also important that your are getting out of those sweaty clothes right after you workout even in you’re not getting in the shower, its not good to sit in wet sweaty clothes, even if you’re driving straight home.
So this is my threesome (my triangle) of love. I don’t believe you can have 1 and 2 and not 3 or 3 and 2 and not 1, you get the point. They all play an interlinking roll with one another making a whole. By doing all three of these you will begin to reap the full benefits of living that overall well balanced lifestyle. So give me these three things & I am a pretty happy girl. Being active, eating healthy and taking care of your canvas will keep you strong, peppy & glowing for years to come.