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There is never a perfect answer for this. 

Your motivation will change. You may need to dig deeper, reevaluating your goals and dreams.

What is MY motivation? 

The thought and desire for future success, and the gratification of past success. But that's ME.


“That time.”

Of all the topics I chat about, and of all the information that is out there on the web and on social media, this topic is one that is probably not addressed.

The information I am about to share varies from individual to individual, and there isn’t an ideal way to manage any stressors. These are simply my tips, ones that I assumed most of you already know, but as I share my tips with my clients, I realize every day that most do not realize the that our menstrual cycles can play a role.

If you are “back on track” on any sort of plan, and monitoring your progress with a scale, the scale can already be a very frustrating tool to use, and extra frustrating during “that time of the month.” You have probably noticed some goofy changes going on in your body (and in your head, hello emotions!). Those lovely symptoms are the result of hormonal changes, NORMAL hormonal changes. You may have noticed you are up on scale, and quite a bit even days before your cycle comes. You have been extremely diligent on your macros, or on whichever plan you are following and see that scale go up, and up a lot! Well, let me tell you this, THAT IS NORMAL water retention, and yes it will always happen! This water retention is normal, and so is the rise on the scale, so leave the scale alone. Stay off, hide it, just say no! This normal water retention will come and go, and it is NOT fat gain. If you check in with a coach (or me!), then feel free to check in, but tell them the reason you skipped the scale! They will of course understand. If they don’t, well that’s a whole other discussion! The cravings, the bloat, and lack of energy, are also temporary, and I assure you that these symptoms will subside. Even though these symptoms are bound to happen to most of us, here are a few things that you can do to feel better!

KEEP CHUGGING. I mean this in so many ways. First, keep chugging that water even if you seem so bloated already. In fact, UP YOUR WATER intake. It will HELP the bloat. Secondly, keep chugging along. Don’t break your usual routine or plan just because you feel that you have a green light or an excuse to do so. Keep following your macros, and make some great whole and clean choices. I do recommend to avoid a surplus of packaged items. A little extra salt won’t kill you, and it certainly will not hinder long term progress, but I would not suggest loading up on foods that are overly packed with a very high amount of sodium. Have a craving? That’s okay, of course you can, you are human! Give in to the craving, don’t let it become a nasty binge or out of control snack fest. If you do indeed opt for something super high in sodium, drink more water. You will be fine! Don’t stress! You have plenty.

One of my biggest reliefs that I highly recommend trying, is to keep up your normal workout or training routine. You will feel better, I assure you, due to that little endorphin rush that comes along with exercise. And, the cherry on top of the sundae, you will even de bloat a little! When I took this photo, I was away at my daughter’s dance competition, day two of my cycle, feeling bloated, emotional, tired, ALL THE THINGS. I felt so much better after a 25 min lift, I felt the need to selfie it!

Next (please don’t hit me), I would highly suggest to avoid the booze, as tempting as it may be when you just feel MEH. There are several reasons why this is a bad idea, but one of the reasons I like to avoid it, goes into my next tip to manage your cravings! Drinking alcohol can leave us not only with an increased appetite (and a bloated physique), but it can induce some cravings, and make it hard to control a proper serving size if you do end up working in a treat. But if you have a craving for chocolate (as you should, its divine), then work the treat in to your macros! It will fit, I assure you. If the idea of working in chocolate or a dessert makes you a little nervous, then make a healthier alternative of your favorite dessert. I have endless recipes for chocolate cravings and other desserts, so I’ve got you covered there. If you do not have the energy to bake something fabulous, then head over to, and order yourself the yummiest and cleanest chocolate spread you will ever try. If you like chocolate, I assure you that you will love this! A little bonus, enter the code TaraFFit10 to save a little moolah, since I know you may be online shopping when your emotions get the best of you!

And last, listen to your body. Really! I mean it! If you sincerely need an extra rest day and are hunched over in pain, then rest. No questions asked. Take care of you! I assure you that you will feel back to your normal self in no time at all.

I'LL TAKE TWO, Please.

I really wish there were TWO copies of myself, is that too much to ask?

Who has felt this way before? That If we had a clone, we could "DO IT ALL". 

If I had two copies of Tara, I can complete every task, wear every hat, get it ALL done, and done the RIGHT way. 

I can have one Tara committed to my work, and the other Tara committed to my family, especially right now while I tackle remote Learning with my kiddos. 

But then if I had TWO of myself, would I want THREE? OF COURSE, I WOULD.

I would want ANOTHER Tara, to take on EVEN MORE. That’s how we all work. We always want MORE.

I personally, always strive for MORE, which is not necessarily always a great thing either. I want to learn more, grow more, be more, retain more, build more, teach more. But that comes with a price. I prioritize my own goals so much, that I find myself missing out on quite a bit, then I am back to needing now a third Tara and perhaps even a fourth Tara.

I have made this mistake time after time, whether it has been during competition prep, where I prioritized competing over friendship and my social life, missing out on quite a bit of opportunities. I have done the same thing with my work life and social life balance recently. One of my closer girlfriends just recently made a move to another state at a pretty fast speed in order to take a fantastic opportunity for her family. When I found out the news of her upcoming move, I broke down with such sadness. I could not stop crying, I instantly regretted how little time I had made for her recently, since I had been so consumed with work. Fair, this was a time during Covid, where we should be social distancing, but let’s be honest, I think we are all being a touch more social by now. Now, this dear friend, who used to be only 25-minute drive away, is now a 7 hour drive away. That chance is gone, and I missed the chance.

I did NOT need two versions of Tara or even 3, in order to see her and be a good friend, and still be a good mom and coach. I just needed a dose of my own medicine, and to practice what I preach, BALANCE. To balance it all out, a little here, a little there. I am a firm believer of work before play, but currently, my work load and Remote Learning responsibility is pretty high on the hours. I realize if I abide by that mentality, the “play” will never happen. I need to fit it in.

The same pertains with finding that right balance in order to budget the time to take care of our health, finding the time to fit in regular exercise and prepare healthy meals for ourselves and our families. Of course, we are busy, of course all of our days are filled to the max. It is obvious by now that we are all living in a hectic, busy and stress filled time. But we can budget in some block of time for what is good for us. This friend was good for me, in so many ways. This friend I mention, has a heart of gold. Our friendship is the type that feels very comfortable and forgiving. I am very disappointed in myself that I did not find the time to balance in time for a relationship that was truly good for me. All I can do it move on and learn, and try harder to practice more balance and learn from MYSELF.

We ALL are suffering and struggling right now, in some way or another, please remember that. If you know that you are prioritizing one aspect of your life over another, please think about this and re-evaluate. Your situation may be completely different from mine and that is completely okay, but it still pertains. The cold hard truth is, that there will never be two of us, but instead only ONE. One unique and pretty amazing person that has the capability to do indeed do it all, just do it all in time. Balance it all out, a little here, a little there, and the pieces will come together. 


Winter Blues, Post Partum Blues, and now COVID BLUES

Winter blues, post-partum blues, post competition blues (in the body building industry) and now…Quarantine blues. There will ALWAYS be some type BLUE, some reason or event that has brought us heartache, stress and perhaps an easy excuse to put ourselves very last, thus identifying that sadness for lack of motivation. There will always be some type to emotional event that could bring our mood down, and for some reason may feel like an easy opt in for the ice cream pint binges and bottomless chip bag snacking. Motivation at times like these can be extremely hard to find, but I assure, you it it’s there. We all may just have to dig a little deeper to find it.

From my own past experiences during times of emotional stress, there are TWO key components that I motivated me. The first, is simple, if I see RESULTS, and feel confident, I am motivated. The second, a bit more elaborate, is getting rid of extreme STRESS. In my opinion, it is stress or any emotional blues that could occur from the mentioned life scenarios, that take over the presence of any motivation that may exist. So how do I cope? Simple, TRY TO DE STRESS. (and perhaps, not so simple).

For me, and most individuals whether they realize it or not, exercise is a fantastic stress relief. Now you may read that, roll your eyes, and eagerly start to scroll down to my next blog. Give me a minute, hear me out. The secret to this method, is even more simple, finding the method of exercise that actually relieves YOUR stress. Perhaps you want to take my advice, and you decide to sign up at a new gym to try my method out. Perhaps you are also an individual that isn’t used to regular exercise, and you start to realize that the stress of getting into a new gym environment, meeting new people, finding available equipment at the gym, finding your rhythm and knowing what to do in the gym is indeed bringing on even MORE stress, emotional stress. Maybe you start off with too much exercise, and start exercising five days a week, when you were previously used to one day per week. Now, your body has become stressed, you are run down, your immune system is compromised because you are in a calorie deficit plus taking on more exercise than your body is accustomed to, you are sore, tired, and inflamed since your body isn’t used to this new change in activity. Every day you dread getting dressed for the gym because you detest getting on that treadmill, but do it anyway because your friend or some other influencer “swears by it.” Quickly realize that you are already burnt out. Now both your body and mind are stressed. And the biggest killer for motivation that I see, perhaps you get on the scale, to monitor the progress you have made with these great changes, and realize the scale has not budged, in fact it is up two pounds. Boom, now you are even more mentally stressed again. Game over, gym is done.

What is my suggestion to fix this? FIND YOUR OWN MOTIVATION.

Tips for motivation is all relative to each individual. You have to find what motivates YOU. Find the type of exercise you are WILLING to do and that you actually ENJOY doing. You may not have one type of exercise that you actually enjoy YET, but I promise you, you WILL find one. Trial and error my friends. Just because your girlfriend swears by own method and she looks fantastic, that does not mean that method is an ideal choice for YOU. I used to HATE exercising. HATE IT. I envied the people that said they loved it; I just didn’t understand. And now? THAT’S ME NOW. I get it. I love it, I crave it, I need it to feel balanced, motivated, energized, focused, and it is Exercise is my BIGGEST stress reliever. I truly enjoy it now. Going from a body that had over 100 pounds to lose, dreading the idea of stepping in to a gym or moving my body, to now making it a hue part of my life with both pleasure and work. I was never a runner, I tried, but nope, never a runner. I don’t know where in our society we were taught that we HAVE to run in order to lose weight. That may be the most common fitness related question I am asked daily, “Do I have to run?” Of course, you don’t. While it is the pairing of a proper amount of both cardiovascular and strength training that will bring you fantastic results, it is not the TYPE of each. In my opinion, the only PERFECT workout method or style, is the one that YOU are WILLING to do, and one that you can one day say that you actually enjoy and feel great doing. I found what I love, and what I actually crave and look forward to. We all need to find our own style and method that WE can enjoy and commit to, and turn off the noise of everything else, especially from social media, expensive boutique gyms that push only their method on you.

For me, I know that if I do not take care of myself physically, mentally I don’t feel my best. If I do not eat the way that makes me feel balanced and great, or exercise regularly, I am even more tired, cranky, stressed, unconfident, have BAD cravings…. all the things. So, if I consistently stick to a coping mechanism like exercise that I know relieves my stress and brings me continued motivation, what more could I ask for?

Motivation is really based around our mindset. We need to get in the right mindset rather than the repeated mentality of “I have to start over” or “get back on track.” No one has to start-over, we just have to ADAPT; get used to a new practice, a practice YOU feel great doing that you will soon feel is automatic and part of your life. For me, health and fitness are simply a way of life. It is a lifestyle, not “being on track.” I have always disliked the phrase, “on track” for a reason. If we think that way, we are setting ourselves to fall off track, it is simply too much pressure. Same exact thing with the phrase “on a diet; if you are “on a diet” then you will be “off the diet” if you stray. Again, TOO MUCH PRESSURE. I think the winter weather, Covid-Blues, Post-Partum experiences, these for sure are all are very realistic motivator KILLERS for most of us, or easy excused to throw in the towel. These times are unique, we don’t have that goal to focus on such as getting swim suit ready for a trip or warmer weather, we don’t have a ton of choices as far as social activities to engage in, not even enough reasons to make sure those jeans folded on the top shelf of your closet fit. I encourage you to not use these times as an excuse, but instead to refocus that energy to truly take care of yourself, both on the inside and out and all of the emotional stress will be de-emphasized. Take care of yourself for YOU, and no one else.

Look Back, and use it.

Look back at the times you realized you conquered what you didn't think was possible.

Have you ever looked at an old photo an instantly thought, "WOW. Look at me. Look what I did. Look at what I accomplished. " Is it a photo that you are proud of, where you showcased your hard work? Or perhaps the opposite, was it a photo where you look back and say, "wow, look what I did to myself?", or "I have improved since then, and I ashamed of where I used to be." Regardless, be proud at where you are NOW. Maybe you are looking at an old photo and of yourself ten years younger in a body you wish you had now. But, you are making the actions to improve yourself and get back to a great spot. BE PROUD of this change. Use that as your FUEL. If you fall into the opposite category, look back at something you may not be proud of, use that as your FUEL, to push harder, to motivate yourself to keep going and dig deeper. If we don't have a goal, a NEW goal, a NEW desire to push and improve, then how on EARTH can we motivate ourselves, and possibly others (friends, family, or if you too are a coach yourself!). Use your past experiences, both negative and positive, to be a better version of you. In all forms, physically and mentally.

Let's stop pointing out the obvious!

Week 3 update during the Covid-19 Pandemic

I did not Post a week 1 or 2, correct, you did not miss a post. I wrote both weeks several times, then deleted them before I could post. I was unsure if I wanted to talk about the Pandemic situation and current lock down struggles here with all of you, but I feel I am ready to share my thoughts. This post is to not bring anyone down in any way. Instead, I hope it reminds someone, that this situation could indeed be MUCH WORSE. While we may think we've "got it bad," in theory, we REALLY don't. Some of this, we of course cannot change, and we cannot control. But some, we certainly CAN!

Alright peeps. It is no mystery, that this whole situation, is tough as nails. We all are struggling, NO MATTER WHAT. Some may have lost their job temporarily, some for good. Even if one is blessed with the privilege to continue working during this challenging time, I assure you, that they too are struggling in some other way. Trust me, we are struggling over here too. But guess what, it is indeed getting easier, and we will get through this! My family and I had to adapt, we had to change the way we do many things. And guess what, it is getting easier. At this point, none of these obstacles and challenges are NEW NEWS in any means. We are all home; things are different, kids are fighting, everyone wants something they can't have, and we are not going anywhere.

I am getting tired of the complaints, the excuses, the nitpicking, the judging, and most of all, the abuse some are doing to themselves (both physically and mentally), when instead, they could use this unique time to improve themselves. (I know, insert eye roll here, but you know I am right!)

Stop complaining and start doing something to actually benefit your state of mind, your health, and your family. This is the most important time to improve all of those aspects. Come on, we are all better than this.

With lots of love and hope,


"Don't worry about a thing

'Cause every little thing gonna be alright

Singing, Don't worry about a thing

'Cause every little thing gonna be alright!

Rise up this mornin'

Smiled with the risin' sun

Three little birds

Pitch by my doorstep

Singin' sweet songs

Of melodies pure and true

Saying', This is my message to you"

Bob Marley & The Wailers, Three Little Birds

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