Hi Mia here,

Labor Day weekend is upon us!

For some, that means absolutely nothing. Everything stays the same. For others it means a time to relax, maybe take a mini vacation. Maybe you're busting out the BBQ.

Sasja and I are headed to Malibu for a retreat I've been attending annually since 2011. It is probably our first break from work that does not include a family emergency so we are crazy excited! 

Vacations, rest days, electronic fasts, chill time are all just as important as training when it comes to fat loss, gaining muscle and overall health.

Here in America, when have the tendency to operate at a constant state of stress - from our working conditions, our foods, our air, our water and as women, we also have all of our added responsibility from taking care of the world. Then for those of us who train on a consistent basis, that's added stress on our bodies as well. 

According to Susan Krauss Whitbourne Ph.D. - "Chronic stress takes its toll in part on our body's ability to resist infection, maintain vital functions, and even ability to avoid injury. When you're stressed out and tired, you are more likely to become ill, your arteries take a beating, and you're more likely to have an accident. Your sleep will suffer, you won't digest your food as well, and even the genetic material in the cells of your body may start to become altered in a bad way. Mentally, not only do you become more irritable, depressed, and anxious, but your memory will become worse and you'll make poorer decisions. You'll also be less fun to be with, causing you to become more isolated, lonely, and depressed."

We need a break from the stress. To reset. Here are my personal favorite tips to make sure you are living optimally and stress-free.

1. Take vacations! They don't have to be long. Stay-cations work as well. Just cut yourself off for a bit and enjoy you! Plan ahead so that actually get to do everything you want.

2. Journal/Read Daily! Taking this time to just dump your brain, write things you're grateful for or just reading something cool that has nothing to do with your ever growing to do list is helpful to give the mind and soul a break; a reboot.

3. Eat plant foods! Most plant foods are highly anti-inflammatory. Stress is inflammation. By eating more plants you can reduce to eliminate your nutritional stress/inflammation, therefore lowering your overall stress levels to allow for increased energy, better sleep and overall goodness.

4. Electronic fasts! Turn off your phone, ipad, computer and chill out. Take a day to not answer emails or see what's happening on social media. If you're really a bad ass, cut out TV as well. Get outside. Read a book. Go out with friends or family. Go for a walk or bike ride. Put yourself first. Claim your day.

5. Meditate! This varies for different people, but essentially you just need time to be still and listen to God or the universe or whatever you call your higher being. It can be guided or you can merely focus on your breath. You can do it sitting or laying down. If you're a dancer, allow yourself to freestyle, losing yourself in the music, if you're a runner, a painter, a musician, same thing; allow yourself to get lost in your art. That is meditation as well. When you're out on a walk, take time to appreciate the trees and flowers around, take in their beauty and AWEsomeness and say "Thank you".

There you have it. Start putting these in practice this weekend! Take time for you and don't feel guilty about it. You are worth it and deserving of self care and self love. 

Dedicated To Your Success, 

Mia Shanté
Transformation Coach/Stretch Therapist
Strong 4 Pole, Owner

P.S. We do have a Labor Day Special coming up, but as we're going on vacation. We will not announce it until we get back Monday since we will not be on the computer. If you're interested in learning more about it, reply to this email - "Labor Day Special Please!"