Selfie Self-Confidence {Guest Post}

Hi!  I’m Megan.  I’m a health and wellness coach in Dallas, TX and I blog over at The Lyons’ Share Wellness.  I’m so excited to be here today and grateful to Allison for letting me share with you!

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When I was thinking about what to talk about here on Life’s a Bowl, I started by thinking of the three things that come to mind when I think about Allison:

  • First, her delicious looking breakfasts (especially pancakes)…  But I have to admit, I tend to stick with my favorite yogurt breakfast at least 50% of the time and I’ve already blogged about that (my 4th ever blog post)!
  • Second, her love for Ryan and Charlie…  But she can talk about those better than I can!
  • And finally, the way she radiates so much confidence and happiness in her workout selfies shared via Instagram…  So that is what I’m going to talk about today!

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If those pictures don’t make you smile, I don’t know what will!  And it’s not just Allison…  It’s actually a scientifically proven fact that exercise boosts your self-confidence!

  • A study by the Medical College of Georgia showed that 20 – 40 minutes of daily exercise dramatically improved the self-esteem and reduced depressive symptoms in overweight children.
  • Another study in the Journal of Sport & Exercise Psychology showed that increased physical activity led middle-aged women to perceive their attractiveness and physical condition in a better light.
  • A third study showed that young girls who exercise had a better self-esteem in their adolescent years than those who didn’t.

I could go on and on, but I don’t want Allison to kick me off for boring you!

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The point is…  There are many benefits of exercise, but improved self-confidence is one that often gets forgotten in discussions.  I’ll bet that you can identify the feeling in yourself.  Think back to the last time you had a really great workout.  Maybe you ran a new-to-you distance without stopping, maybe you deadlifted a higher weight than you ever thought possible, maybe you really rocked it in your last Zumba class.

Whatever it was, do you remember that feeling of “I just ran five whole miles!  I can do anything!”?

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We see the impact of exercise-boosted self-confidence all over social media.  The idea of posting a public image of myself with a shiny, red face, greasy hair, and sweat stains all over my shirt really does not sound like a good one.  Yet, I do it all the time and so do so many others.  Have you ever thought about why?  It’s probably because in that moment, we feel so great about ourselves and accomplishing our workout that we want to share it with the world.  To motivate others, to get praise for what we did, to make someone smile, to hold ourselves accountable…  And it works!

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So today if you’re looking for a reason to exercise, just think about how great you’ll feel about yourself afterwards.  Get out there, do your best, and then show it off to the world!

Tell me in the comments…  Have you felt that boost of self-confidence in yourself after a workout? What workout makes you feel the most confident?

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Thanks so much for sharing such a positive and uplifting post, Megan!  I took a peek at it when Megan originally sent it to me, but since the post was in HTML {code} format, I couldn’t see the pictures…  Until I pasted everything into WordPress and the code transformed into text and pictures.  I laughed.out.loud. :D   It’s definitely my first ever #selfie collage!  But I think she did a fabulous job capturing some of my most {ridiculously} silly selfies.

Selfies are always fun, but always awkward.  Don’t you agree?  Should I tilt my head?  Stick my tongue out?  What do I do with my hands?  How does my hair look?  Nonetheless, Megan’s message is spot-on…  Exercise does in fact foster self-confidence.  We’ve all heard that quote “‘Wow.  I really regret that workout.’  Said no one ever.” and it’s absolutely true.  The only workouts that we can regret are the ones that didn’t happen.

— Allison

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Thinking Out Loud: If they only knew…

Thanks to two snow days and a 2-hour delay, this week has flown by!  Last night I worked my first team night at the running store.  Team night is when a local high school’s cross country/track team comes in to get fitted for shoes for their upcoming season {and receive a super sweet discount!} – the store was the most crowded it has been since I started working, but it was a lot of fun!

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Thanks Amanda for hosting another link-up!

1.  Truth: I used to refer to the treadmill as the “dreamill,” but this past winter I’ve had a change of heart.  It’s always there for me, it’s never covered with ice/snow, the temperatures are consistent, and the hills are…  Nonexistent.  Plus, it’s a great chance to catch up on trashy TV {i.e. Bravo}.

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2.  Yes, yes, yes.  Runner’s World is so smart.  This is exactly why I run.

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3.  Did you celebrate National Pancake Day?  If you missed out but still want to celebrate this weekend, check out Tuesday’s Favorite Finds: National Pancake Day post.

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4.  Or if pancakes don’t tickle your fancy, what about muffins?  These Wheat-Free, Dairy-Free Morning Glory Muffins would be great to make and freeze for a quick weekday breakfast.

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5.  Today I took a personal day because I had two different dermatology appointments.  PSA: Get yourself checked!  Melanoma doesn’t discriminate!

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going back in April to have the mole that’s circled removed & tested

6.  Speaking of health, I want to talk more openly about my “health hiccups” on the blog this year.  By doing so I hope to connect with others who have gone though/are going through similar situations, share my experiences, and inspire others to keep a positive attitude.

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shared via Instagram this morning

7.  I love when “throw everything together and hope for the best” dishes turn out to be delicious!  These meatballs contain a few ingredients that may make you question my cooking ability.  I want to make them once more before I share the recipe, but in the meantime, I need help naming them…?

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8.  Another “throw everything together and hope for the best” recipe…  Except, this one has a name.  Three Bean Bell Pepper Chili.  With a side of dog.

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9.  I overheard a group of high school girls chatting and one of the girls said “Ugh, I’m starving!  I overslept this morning and didn’t have time to eat breakfast or pack a lunch.”  Her friends suggested she go get a sandwich, but she ended up buying a banana and pretzels because “I need to fit into my bathing suit for spring break!”  Wish I {could have} said something.

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10.  And an obligatory snow picture.  Everything looks so tranquil covered in snow.  I wonder if we’ll see another storm this season?

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Question:  Do you ever jump into conversations if you overhear something that grabs your attention?  Yes, I do BUT I think it really depends on the situation and topic.  Chatting about coffee in the line at Starbucks?  Sure, I’ll jump in.  But a conversation between high school girls and body image, that’s a tough one.

Question:  Snow – sick of it or hope for more?

— Allison

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Life is just a bowl of cherries.

Well, I definitely was in the minority yesterday with my wish for school today.  Unsurprisingly my wish didn’t come true – most of the school districts in the DMV (DC/Maryland/Virginia) area, as well as the federal government, are closed today.  Oh well, as much as I wish that we were in school, I’m quite comfortable in my pajamas and enjoying the scenery!

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The snow stared falling around 6 a.m. and we’re supposed to get 3-6 inches, more than we’ve seen in the past 2 years!  Although it’s not tons of snow, it’s coming down quickly and it’s during one of the least opportune times…  Morning rush hour.  If you’re familiar with the DMV area you know that traffic is treacherous and there are lots of bad drivers.  I’m not kidding when I say that driving on a sunny day is just as risky as driving on a snowy day – people are blinded by the light.

Today’s agenda most likely will be similar to yesterday’s: eating, cleaning, pinning, baking, a workout, napping, and enjoying the beautiful scenery.  Ryan went to work because he has surgery tomorrow morning and won’t be able to work the rest of the week.

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A couple of weeks ago I was asked to complete this HLB (healthy living blog) survey.  I’m not sure if/when they plan to share my responses, but I thought it would be fun to share them here too for new readers – hey elf buddies :)

1. What’s your name, blog name, and how did you create your blog title?

Name :: Allison

Blog Name :: Life’s a Bowl

Blog Title Meaning :: I’ve always loved reading quotes and think that they’re a great source of inspiration and motivation.  When I was younger I have a vague memory of someone telling me that “Life is just a bowl of cherries.”  I don’t remember who said it, but my best guess is that it was a bartender or waiter.  As a child I had a tendency to drink a lot, a lot of Shirley Temples with extra cherries, so I frequently made friends with the waitstaff at restaurants and social events.

The quote stuck with me but it wasn’t until college when I looked up the meaning – an expression used to say that life is pleasant and carefree.

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2. What’s one goal you’re working towards right now (career, personal, health)?

Physical :: This past spring I ran my first half marathon and then 2 more.  It’s hard to put my emotions and thoughts into words, but the whole experience – the training, the race, the support – was so exhilarating!  After the third half I decided to take a couple of months off from running and focus on strength training.  The change in routine has been good but I’m very eager to sign up for spring races!

Personal :: Switching careers definitely has it’s perks and pitfalls.  I’m thankful to have the opportunity to do both, event planning and teaching, but the inconsistent schedule is like a roller coaster…  Some days my to-do list is a mile long, other days it’s blank.  Fingers crossed that my schedule gets more consistent in the near future.

3. What daily health to-do is easiest for you to complete?  Which is the one you struggle with every single day?

Easiest to Complete :: A workout – it’s the one time of day where I can completely check out and let my mind wander.

Hardest to Complete ::  Drinking enough water – unless I have a water bottle sitting in front of my face I probably will forget to hydrate.

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4. Spread some blog love – which HLB do you read every single post from?

I read about 10 blogs on a daily basis, plus many more if I have the time.  Downloading the Feedly app to my phone has been a blessing and a curse – I like having the ability to read blogs whenever I’m waiting at an appointment or while I’m riding the bike at the gym, but it’s difficult to leave comments.  I wish I could figure out how to save my contact information (name, email address, blog URL) so I didn’t have to re-enter it every time.

5. How would you describe your blogging style?

I never know how to answer this question because I talk about a handful of things – food, fitness, family and friends, health updates, and a whole bunch of other random things.  One thing that stays consistent is my honesty.  I wear my heart on my sleeve so I’m very easy to read.

6. What is your tagline and why?

“Taking a bite out of life one day at a time…”  I’ve recently noticed that a handful of bloggers use this tagline, oh well.  I bet if you asked all of us that use it what it means we’d all have different answers.

I always try to squeeze as much as possible into my schedule and don’t like to rest until everything has been completed…  But I’ve gotten better thanks to Ryan.  I’ll never forget the first time that we met with our priest – she knew me since I was an infant (I was in the same play group as her son), but she was meeting Ryan for the first time.  She asked us how we’d describe our relationship and without hesitation Ryan blurted out “She speeds me up and I slow her down.”  He couldn’t have been more correct!  Over the years Ryan has helped me to realize that I don’t have to do things to feel accomplished, an accomplishment is any form of success.

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7. What is something you’ve learned recently that you found interesting?

The interview with Amazon.com’s CEO Jeff Bezos on “60 Minutes.”  He announced that we could see delivery drones by 2015 – that’s crazy, I can’t even imagine it!  Although, I did think that we’d be living like the Jetsons or Zenon by now when I was younger…

8. What are some of your favorite blogging tools?

PicMonkey is my favorite online photo editor and Rhonna Designs is my favorite photo editing app.  Instagram and Pinterest are my favorite social media platforms.  I write my blog posts in WordPress, but I’d love to find an alternative.

9. What is your healthy eating philosophy?

Everything in moderation.

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10. What is something about you that would shock us?

A lot of people know that I’m tall but when they meet me for the first time they’re surprised just how tall I am, I’m 5’11″.  In elementary school our PE teacher called my best friend and me “The Twin Towers,” ha!

Question:  How did you create your blog title?

Question:  What’s something about yourself that would shock someone you met for the first time?

— Allison

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