From Disordered Eating to Plant-Empowered Living: Part 1

Kick Disordered Eating Out

The time to share my journey from disordered eating to plant-empowered living has come! 

Part 1: Intro

I’m ready to come clean…

Disordered Eating Vegan

What you are about to read is Part 1 (an introduction) to the multi-part “coming out” series I am going to be sharing with you over the next few weeks. I will be telling you parts of my journey that I’ve never shared openly before. I’m thrilled that I am in a place in life where I’m able and willing to get REAL and RAW, which means being transparent about the struggles that have made me who I am today!

Up until recently, I put A LOT of pressure on myself to be the shining example of a fit, healthy (physically and emotionally) vegan. It’s been my mission to bring veganism into the mainstream for over 20 years, and up until recently, the misinformation about plant-based nutrition, and the stereotypes about vegans in general, were so intense I purposefully made it my job to focus on only positives.

I’ve been vegan 22 years (vegetarian 30 years), and in large part, when I got sick or didn’t feel well, people were quick to blame it on my vegan diet. As ridiculous as that is, (I mean really, how many omnivores get sick and don’t feel well sometimes… ummm… everyone!), I did everything in my power not to give people any reason to associate anything negative with being vegan. I felt this is what I needed to do to help the most people become motivated and inspired to make the transition to a vegan lifestyle.I felt my own personal struggles were irrelevant, since they had nothing to do with me being vegan, and everything to do with my mental and emotional health.

Well, times have changed, and so have I!

Jump ahead to 2016 for a moment (don’t worry, I will be sharing all the juicy details about my years of disordered eating shortly)…

Last year I began a new chapter in my life and career. I created and launched my first online coaching program, making it possible to coach people all over the world through a structured process for transitioning to a fit vegan lifestyle. This was also exciting for me because it was an opportunity to finally put my counseling skills (from my Master’s in Social Work) to use. The program is holistic in that we work on nutrition, fitness, and emotional health together, since each affects the others.

The program also gave me a great deal of insight into the issues people face on their journeys to simply be healthy and happy. One such issue includes different types of disordered eating. The diet mentality, and the pressure society puts on us to have the “perfect body”, is so ingrained in our culture, that most of us have totally lost touch with our innate ability to eat without trying to follow self-imposed “rules” that dictate what, when, and how much food we consume. If you really stop and think about this concept, it’s mind blowing!

Countless people, who understand logically that diets don’t work, feel totally lost without a “diet” to follow. Most are also fearful that they will lose control of the shape of their bodies without self-imposed dietary rules. They are scared of “getting fat” and/or losing muscle. These fears are heightened when switching to eating plants exclusively since this usually means more carbs and less protein (in this carb-phobic protein-obsessed world in which we live)!

Disordered eating story

These disordered eating issues are certainly not exclusive to omnivores. Although I’ve been plant-exclusive for my entire teenage and adult life, I too have struggled with disordered eating and an impaired body image. I could truly relate to these people I was coaching.

It has been a long, agonizing journey for me to come to terms with, and work through, my disordered eating issues. At one point in my twenties I played the, “how lean can I get” game, in a subconscious attempt to gain control of my life. I am strong and lean at 120ish pounds, so can you imagine what I was like at 99 pounds? Looking back at photos is quite terrifying to me now.

In fact, as healthy as I am now, I consider myself in recovery still, and I wouldn’t be surprised if I continue to feel I’m “recovering” for the rest of my life. To me, this simply means I am empowered to continue to practice existing and new tools for emotional growth to which there is no ceiling. It also means I couldn’t be more excited to be launching my new Plant-Empowered Coaching Program. Here the focus is learning to eat consciously, mindfully, and intuitively as part of building a PLANT-strong body, heart, and mind.

My purpose for sharing my story, and putting my heart into this coaching program, is to empower people with similar disordered eating issues to “come out” and get the help they need to become PLANT-Empowered too!

I invite you to stay tuned for Part 2 of my story. I dive into what went on behind closed doors all the years I was drowning in my own diet hell…

Vegan Fitness Challenge for August 2017


Time to announce our Vegan Fitness Challenge for August, 2017!

If you want to get and STAY motivated to challenge your body and mind, and you have not joined our Vegan Fitness Challenges Facebook group yet, now’s the time!

Our Vegan Fitness Challenges Facebook group was formed in May, 2017, and so far, we’ve completed challenges for the months of June and July. (If you haven’t read the first blog post introducing the group, you may want to read that post before continuing.)

Hey everyone, Ella here, and we are getting ready for the August Vegan Fitness Challenge!

Fitness Component:

I want to first introduce what we are going to do for the workout component. We will be doing 100 lunges, that’s 50 lunges on each side, every single day. There’s going to be a different type of lunge to perform for each of the five days that we’re doing this vegan fitness challenge. In addition to those 100 lunges you’ve also got 100 plank jacks per day to perform.

Take a look at the video above for a demonstration of each of the five different types of lunges. Keep in mind I’m giving you these options to, number one, add variety to your workouts. Number two, to work your muscles in different ways in order to build functional strength and tone. And the third reason is to increase the difficulty of the challenge for our more advanced participants.

Also remember, if you are a beginner, and a basic lunge is challenging enough, you’re free to stick to one type of lunge during this vegan fitness challenge. I always set the bar high so that you have something to work towards, and so that the more advanced participants will be challenged as well. Last, keep in mind that the other way to step it up is to add weights/dumbbells.

Diet Component:

For the diet part of the vegan fitness challenge we are of course going to eat vegan, but we’re going to step it up a notch this month. I want a minimum of five servings of green vegetables eaten every single day for those five days. For optimal vegan nutrition, we should ideally be doing this anyway, so if you’re not in that habit this is a great opportunity to practice getting in tons of greens every day!

Mindset Component:

Now for the mindset component of the challenge. We’re going to work on turning every negative thought into a positive one. For example I came down with a cold the other night so I’m not feeling my best. I could easily focus on how crappy I feel, how my performance is suffering, and how annoying it is to work out when I can’t breathe well. OR I could turn that around and say, “You know what? This is a perfect opportunity for me to take it easy for a couple days and let my body rest and heal.”

I have a tendency to overtrain, and I’ve got a shoulder injury that I’ve been struggling to heal completely. Spending less time training will not only give my body a helpful break, it will also allow me more time to get tons of work done.

Just like in my example, I want you to work on catching yourself when you have a negative thought. Once you catch yourself, you can then take a step back in order to become the observer of your own mind and the watcher of your own thoughts. Only then can you consciously make the choice to create a new, positive thought to replace the negative thought. We often can’t change our circumstances, but we do have total control over the thoughts that we have about those circumstances. Our thoughts are what cause our feelings, our feelings dictate our actions, and our actions lead to our results. If we start by taking control of our thoughts, we are suddenly empowered to reach our goals through our actions. See how that works?


We start the Vegan Fitness Challenge on the first Monday of every month, so this month we begin on August 7th. I’m giving away a copy of my book, The Six Weeks to Sexy Abs Meal Plan, to the person who not only completes the challenge, but also puts effort into sharing their experiences throughout the week with our Facebook group, with their own Facebook friends, and on Instagram (#veganfitnesschallenges @sexyfitvegan).

Let’s Do This!

Vegan Fitness Challenge Group: Fit Vegan Living Made Fun!


If you’ve ever been stuck in a food or fitness rut when you needed some extra vegan fitness motivation, join the club!

No really… Join the Vegan Fitness Challenge club!

Starting next month, June 2017, we will be taking on a vegan fitness challenge the first five weekdays of every month. Whether you’re feeling unmotivated or bored with your current routine, or you want to prevent getting to that point, this closed Facebook Group is the perfect way to evoke some excitement and add variety to your current food and/or fitness routine.

I want to take this opportunity to introduce the group, invite you to join, and get you stoked for our first challenge which begins June 5th, 2017!

Here’s the Dealvegan fitness challenge group at Sobekick in Miami

Many of us thrive on challenges. We all want to be our best selves, but often times we get lost when it comes to implementing a structured approach to improving ourselves. Challenges provide a structured process for stepping outside of our comfort zones. And guess what… We need to get uncomfortable in order to make true changes to our bodies and our lives. This goes for both food, fitness, and mindset.

Vegan Fitness Challenge group to the rescue!

Bottom Line

Having a supportive community to guide you through a vegan fitness challenge truly sets you up for success with motivation and inspiration.

Our group also adds the accountability factor. When I ask clients starting my 8-week coaching program, “What are you missing?” The number one answer is accountability followed by guidance and knowledge.

How it Works

Every month I will be announcing the details of the vegan fitness challenge. The challenge always begins on the first Monday of the month and lasts through Friday (5 days).

Each vegan fitness challenge will be made up of 3 parts.

Part I: Eat vegan and post at least one food pic or video each day.

Part II: Complete the workout I provide and post a picture or video of you working out each day.

Part III: Complete the mindset exercise I provide each day.

What You Need

The drive to challenge yourself and the desire to be fit, strong, and healthy from the inside out is all you need to succeed as part of the Vegan Fitness Challenge group.

What You Don’t Need

Equipment. The vegan fitness challenges will not require any special equipment so that everyone can participate no matter where you are or what you have access to.

You also don’t need to be vegan to challenge yourself to eat plant-exclusive for 5 days out of the month. Anyone can do it and I’ll be there throughout the process. I’ll be answering questions and giving tips on vegan nutrition, preparing your own vegan snacks and meals, and how to eat out as a vegan.Vegan Fitness Challenge Group award

It Gets Better!

Every month I will be awarding one participant my book, The Six Weeks to Sexy Abs Meal Plan! I will be shipping the book to the person who has goes above and beyond with their posting throughout the 5 days of the challenge!

How to Join

Our Vegan Challenge Facebook group is closed, meaning you can request to join and I will be approving the requests. I’m choosing a closed instead of public group because I insist that the group be full of positive juju! A supportive community of like-minded people ready and willing to support, motivate, and inspire one another. The group is a judgement-free zone. Anyone violating the awesome vibe of the group will be removed immediately.

Maximize Your Vegan Fitness Challenges Group Experience!

Step 1

Learn more about the Vegan Fitness Challenges Facebook group HERE and request to join HERE.

Step 2

Let’s Do This!

Fit Vegan Program Makes Going Vegan FUN!

It’s here… the VEGANS TASTE BETTER 8-Weeks to a Plant-Empowered Life, designed to help people create a fun, fit vegan lifestyle that is practical, balanced, and FUN!

I Bet You’ll Agree With Me When I Say,

“I want it all! I want a strong, lean, healthy body. I want to enjoy the food I eat. I want preparing meals to be quick and easy. I want a great social life and wholesome relationships. I want to enjoy a glass of wine with dinner and cocktails when I go out with friends.  I want to love my workouts. I want to feel energized and empowered. I want to have a fit vegan lifestyle. I want to love my life!”

Here’s My Take..

We CAN have it all! A fun, fit vegan lifestyle does NOT involve counting calories or giving up the glass of wine you enjoy with dinner or cocktails with friends. Why? Because a “lifestyle” by definition is SUSTAINABLE! Who wants to count calories, count macros, or be fearful of a night out with your friends because you don’t want to “fall off” a diet you’re on? No way!

The Bottom Line…

You CAN have a strong, healthy, sexy body eating and exercising in a way that’s enjoyable and practical. You CAN gain lean muscle, get stronger (physically AND mentally), and have more energy than you’ve ever imagined on a plant-based diet. You CAN stay true to your values of compassion for animals and concern for the environment with a fit vegan lifestyle without feeling overwhelmed or deprived.

I’m living proof, as are my clients!

Here’s The Deal…Vegan Fitness Plant-Empowered Promo

After 22 years as a fit vegan, and 14 years as a vegan fitness expert, I’m psyched to be rolling out the VEGANS TASTE BETTER™ 8 Weeks to a Plant-Empowered Life coaching program to guide people with a structured, step-by-step process for making the transition to a healthy, fit vegan lifestyle that works for them. I introduced my 6-Week Plant-Empowered Coaching Program in 2016, and after having over 30 people complete the program, I decided to do a revamp to make it even MORE comprehensive, holistic, and FUN!

I Can’t Emphasize Enough…

Why more holistic? I can’t stress enough the importance of several key factors for successfully transitioning to a fun, fit vegan lifestyle

  1. Developing an empowered mindset
  2. Improving emotional health
  3. Focusing on adding healthy foods to your plate (as opposed to focusing on the foods you’re taking away)
  4. Finding balance in your life
  5. Making your own health and happiness top priority

My newly revamped vegan fitness lifestyle program emphasizes gaining not just knowledge, but also the tools you need for optimizing your mental and emotional well-being. Without mental and emotional health, all the knowledge in the world will not create a lasting fit vegan lifestyle transformation!

Is This You?

My coaching program is designed to help people who know that adopting a plant-based diet with the right exercise routine, if done right, is the way to go for a strong, healthy body (and compassionate way of life) BUT they don’t seem to have the all the tools they need to pull off the transformation on their own.

Why? Because of one, or a combination of several reasons. Can you relate?

  1. They lack knowledge of what a well-balanced, healthy vegan diet plan looks like.
  2. They are addicted to sugar, processed foods, and/or animal products.
  3. They fear losing muscle, strength, and other gains they’ve made in the gym on their previous dietary routine.
  4. They lack the knowledge of how to exercise in a way that’s in line with their goals AND is enjoyable.
  5. They lack the motivation/mindset to stay consistent with the changes they want to make to their habits long enough for it to become a lifestyle.

What Exactly Do You Need To Succeed?

In order to discover if my program is a good fit, I always ask potential clients the question, “What do you need to be able to get on the right track and STAY there so that your new habits become your new fit vegan lifestyle?”

What’s your answer? Is it one or more of the following?

  1. Education about what a well-balanced healthy vegan diet looks like and/or what sustainable fitness routine will help you achieve lasting results.
  2. Accountability/having others to answer to when you either fulfill or fall short of your commitments.
  3. Guidance and support to help you get on a plant-based nutrition and exercise plan that works for YOU so that it is sustainable.
  4. Gaining mindset tools that will facilitate their ability to overcome life challenges and feel in control of the decisions they make about what they put in their bodies and how they move through the world. (Becoming empowered!)

The Real Story…

I have to say that selfishly, I am LOVING guiding people through the 8 weeks of my VEGANS TASTE BETTER™ plant-empowered coaching program. Why? Because I’ve set the process up to be do-able and enjoyable. Seeing clients through such an empowering experience is priceless for both me and them.

Judy is one of the most recent “graduates” of this vegan fitness program, and here’s what she had to say…

I contacted Ella, the “sexy fit vegan” a while back because I just was not feeling well and was very dissatisfied with my diet and body. I have never been crazy about eating meat and just like Ella, I am a true animal lover. With compassion especially for dogs.

Ella was extremely sincere and patient with me and adapted very easily to my schedule. Basically she made herself very available for me as I needed to start her plant-empowered program. 
She never hesitated to share her knowledge, resources, and experiences with me. Her enthusiasm is contagious!
Ella gave me all the tools that I required to help me attain a fit, vegan lifestyle. As the program is nearing the end for me, I feel AMAZING and I am loving the lifestyle.
I have taken a new lease on life and feel energized, recharged and I can honestly say that this lifestyle works!
Thank you Ella for not pressuring me and for all of your encouragement, support and understanding of my own schedule. 
I give Ella my highest recommendation as a great accomplished coach to help anyone interested in a fit, vegan lifestyle that truly works. I am thrilled that I had the great fortune of finding her.
 As part of the program, we have an awesome secret Facebook group just for program members… Check out what Lilly said after just 3 weeks in the program. I do not allow people to weigh themselves during the program by the way (which is why Lilly is showing her loose pants instead of talking about pounds). Why? Because I require the focus to be on THE PROCESS of gaining the vegan fitness tools you need for a LIFETIME of health and happiness. Weight loss will simply be a side effect of learning those tools!vegan fitness program testimonial by Lilly
I’m thrilled to say I’ve got tons of success stories to share! Feel free to check out more HERE.

That’s Not All…

I’m offering FREE one-on-one consultations (what I like to call discovery sessions) for anyone who may be a good fit to work with me. I have a strict policy that I will only accept people into my program who are a good match and who I believe will finish the 8 weeks THRILLED with the success they’ve had and the confidence they’ve gained to continue with their newly created fun, fit vegan lifestyle. So, in order to make that determination, I speak with every potential client myself.

Let’s Do This!

If you think you may be a good fit for the VEGANS TASTE BETTER™ 8 Weeks to a Plant-Empowered Life coaching program, I’d love to speak with you! Simply apply for your free discovery session with me HERE today.

Looking forward to connecting with you!


Fitness Exercises You Can Do With Kids During the Winter Months


The winter months can present challenges when it comes to sticking to your exercise routine as well as keeping your kids active…

The new year may be here, but winter still has a few more weeks before it melts into spring. For most of us, winter calls to mind warm, cozy sweaters, nights cuddled up by the fire, and lots and lots of hot beverages. You know what tends to slip our minds during winter? Exercise and healthy eating. This can be tough for those of us trying to live a healthy lifestyle, particularly when we have children looking up to us.

In some ways, I understand our wintertime, couch potato tendencies. Who wants to spend time trying to convince themselves and their children to get some physical activity – especially when it’s cold outside! What’s more, our cupboards are usually crammed with holiday goodies co-workers gave us as gifts during the previous holiday season, tempting anyone who dares to trek through the kitchen. Who among us has the willpower to resist a tasty cookie and get a healthy snack instead? (Not me!)

Over the years, I’ve picked up a few tricks that not only get my son moving during the winter months, but actually help me keep fit too! They’ve become some of our favorite winter activities. Why not give a few a try to kick start 2017?

Walk in a Winter Wonderland

It’s a simple fact: every kid likes to play in the snow. So when you wake up to some clean, fresh powder, why not take advantage of it? Bundle up and take a walk so you both can enjoy the scenery. Make a snowman or have a snowball fight! Whatever you decide to do with your time in the snow, it will certainly be better than time spent in front of the TV.

Even if you live in a snow-free climate, you can still take advantage of the winter weather. Parks and hiking trails will be less populated in the winter, which means your family can have the place practically to yourselves! As long as you are dressed for the weather, there is no reason that you and your little ones shouldn’t enjoy some time in the wintry outdoors.

Marathon Your Meal Prep

If you’re living a healthy, vegan lifestyle, you probably already know the importance of meal prepping. Taking time to prepare healthy, plant-based meals and snacks can be a lifesaver during those busy workdays, when it seems like all you do is grab something as you head out the door again. But have you ever stopped to consider that meal prep could be a workout?

Get the whole family involved in your cooking! Chopping veggies (if you’re old enough to handle a knife, of course), running around the kitchen finding ingredients, and mixing things together can actually get your heart rate up and your muscles working – and if you don’t believe me, as anyone who’s ever baked something without an electric mixer!

At my house, we make meal prep an athletic event. We invent little competitions, like who can clean the counter the fastest (my favorite way to get my son to tidy up for me) and we make sure that everyone plays a part in getting ready for the week. It may not be as strenuous as running a marathon, but it’s leaps and bounds better than lying around all afternoon.

Reclaim Your Favorite Outdoor Games

Your parents may have told you not to play ball in the house, but you’re the parent now! Go ahead and try repurposing your favorite outdoor activities for a housebound group. Have wheelbarrow races around the living room. Compete to see who can hula hoop the longest. Practice your handstands or hacky sack skills. Find your favorite tunes and turn up the volume, gather the family, and take turns showing off your best moves.

Really, the key is that everyone is getting their blood flowing and their endorphins flowing. Not only will you find yourself getting some exercise, you will make amazing memories you’ll cherish for years. Fun-filled exercise like this can really help you shake off those winter blues and help create healthy habits you’ll keep all year!

Tri Training During the Winter Months


Training for triathlons is an excellent way to get and stay in shape, since learning to become a better, faster, and stronger athlete across three sport disciplines is a significant physical challenge.

Depending on where you live, though, triathlon training can be much more accessible and feasible in some parts of the year than others. It’s a no-brainer that you’ll want to swim out in the open water and run and cycle out in the open roads when it’s warm and sunny outside, but what about all those other months of the year when it’s cold, wet, dreary, snowing, or freezing?

Figuring out how to rock your triathlon training year-round, but particularly in the winter months, takes some planning and research, but I think it’s completely doable, provided you manage your expectations accordingly. With a little research to find out what your available options are, and a lot of patience – you may be asking yourself if winter will ever end!? – you’ll be able to get through your winter while still also posting significant accomplishments in your tri training.

Below, you’ll find some of my tips for managing triathlon training during the winter months.

Swimming: commit to masters each week.

Most triathletes I know, as well as people who swear they have no interest in tris, always say that their weakest sport is swimming, and it’s probably with good reason. Compared to the other two disciplines, swimming is arguably the most technical, and it’s no surprise, then, that enlisting the help of a swimming coach – or at least going to the pool when others are there who can help critique your form – will do wonders for your skill.

Obviously when it’s cold outside, you probably will have no interest in swimming outdoors, but you can at least commit to attending masters each week for the duration of the winter. Even if you’re not putting in significant volume when you’re swimming, you can still reap the benefits of instruction and feedback from the masters coaches. Plus, with other people also being there, you can commiserate together.

To further incentivize it, maybe as a reward for working hard at masters all winter, you can treat yourself to a long weekend away to somewhere warm where you could post some open-water swimming at the end of the winter.

Cycling: the trainer will become your new best friend.0002378_tacx_bluematic_turbo_trainer

When the roads are impassable or simply unsafe to ride, you’ll quickly find that your trainer will become your new best friend. Many triathletes I know loathe the trainer, yet at the same time, if it comes down to riding on the trainer for a few hours or not riding at all, they’ll suck it up and do it.

There are many new online training programs available that will help you more easily pass the time on the trainer, such as Zwift Watopia, that will allow you to virtually ride on courses all over the world. If you’re so inclined, you could even pass the time on the trainer while binge-watching movies or Netflix.

One nice thing about using the trainer is that you are in charge of the climate control, so if you’re training for a race in a warm and humid location, you can adjust your home temperatures accordingly while you’re on the trainer to begin to mimic what you’ll experience on race day.

Running: bundle up with a buddy or stick to the treadmill.

Of all the sports in triathlon, running is probably the most durable, in that you can do it year-round outdoors. Provided you dress for the elements correctly, you may find that winter running is actually a lot of fun!

Obviously, don’t do anything that will jeopardize your health or well-being – if there’s a band of sub-arctic temperatures coming through, it’s probably not a great idea to venture outside – but there’s something to be said for running through some freshly-fallen snow or making snow angels outside after you finish a run. If you’re not all that interested in running in the snow, then naturally you can stay indoors on a treadmill and watch TV while you run in place. I personally love running through the snow, but I realize that it may not be everyone’s cup of tea.

Escape to a hot yoga class.

Even with all the different sports inherent in triathlon training, triathletes will still benefit from devoting some time each week to flexibility and stretching work. If it’s sub-zero outside, you may find the thought of escaping to a yoga class – particularly a hot yoga class – especially enticing. It could be a fun way to mix-up your triathlon training routine, and provided you listen to your body and scale the stretches accordingly, if you’re having any difficulties, your body will likely thank you for the flexibility work, and you’ll leave feeling refreshed and renewed.

Find an indoor triathlon mid-winter.

Finally, I know that some gyms offer their members a chance to participate in indoor triathlons throughout the winter. While it’s obviously not the same as an outdoor triathlon, it could still be a lot of fun to have little time test trials throughout the winter so you can obtain several benchmarks for how your training is faring, without having to wait until the temperatures warm up enough to complete a triathlon outside. Gyms will usually only offer these opportunities to their members, so do your research well in advance if you think you’d want to participate in the event.

While waiting for spring to come might seem like a Sisyphean task when you’re in the middle of triathlon training during the cold, dark, and dreary winter months, know that a little planning will go a long way. It will behoove you to be creative while you wait for spring to show-up, but all the work that you do in those early months will surely pay dividends later, when you’re back outdoors in the open waters or on the open roads.



5 Advantages of Using a Desk Treadmill at Workplace

treadmill desk

Many people who were used to working while sitting all day long have now adopted the use of a treadmill desk, and the adoption rate is increasing day after day.

A treadmill or a standing desk can make you healthy by limiting your sedentary way of life. With the number of Americans today who are spending around 9 hours sitting, the prevalence of certain cancers, diabetes, and other kinds of health disorders continues to escalate each year.

That is merely the start. There are lots of advantages of working while on a treadmill desk. Here are at least five of them:

  1. You Are Far Away From Sitting Diseases and Painsdesk-treadmill-1

Sitting disease, in other words, is a winding down of the metabolism that happens when a person sits for a long period of time. The lowering of the basal metabolic rate (BMR) is the most direct consequence of this. Assume that it is your heart rate when you sitting still. You burn lesser calories just to keep your vital organs working, exercising your brain cells, etc.

By standing, you can significantly increase your body’s BMR since the heart needs to work harder to keep your body erect. Slowly walking at a pace of one to two mph will raise the BMR even further, and with that, your background calorie burns. You can estimate such burn rate at around 100 to 130/hour.

  1. It Reduces Stress and Increases Productivity

Exercising regularly can help improve your mood and lessen anxiety through the release of the brain of endorphins to the body. The endorphins can lessen your sensitivity to pain and stimulate a positive feeling to your body. When using the treadmill desk, you are already able to exercise on a regular basis.

Apart from that, a study also concluded that the performance of employees while using a treadmill desk did not decline after an initial, short adjustment on its use. As a matter of fact, it was found out that the overall health and productivity of employees have improved. Stating that mental performance, time management, and work quality all improved when the employees use the treadmill desk.

  1. Calories Are Burnt and Results in Healthy Body Weight

Like any other kinds of exercise, walking burns calories. Although not as many calories as biking or running burns, but walking still needs energy and thus offers a calorie burn. For losing weight, increasing the level of intensity, increasing walking or incline level for longer periods will burn lots of calories. However, when utilizing desk treadmill workstation for the first time, you should start gradually and slowly increase your speed as well as walking duration after several weeks.desk-treadmill-2

  1. Improves Fitness, Health, and Creativity

Studies show that engaging in exercise enhances health and fitness, and is directly connected to connectivity. The study even found evidence that using a treadmill desk at a workplace can enhance memory and increase creative thinking. It may also help the brain to work better by boosting the functional connectivity among the areas in the brain.

  1. Maintains Blood Pressure and Reduces Risk of Type 2 Diabetes

We all know that walking can help improve blood flow which in turn lessens blood pressure. According to also to studies, people with hypertension have lower bp readings for around 22 hours after a session of working on a treadmill desk. This effect is also beneficial to those who are suffering from type 2 diabetes. Through the use of the desk treadmill, there are able to exercise and that helps reduce the levels of blood glucose and which will help them avoid long-term complications later on. 

In addition to these 5 advantages, using desk treadmill at workplace also promotes a healthy lifestyle. Many users are reported to obtain moderate weight loss as an outcome of this new routine. Crash exercise programs and crash diets can give negative effects hence a very slow weight loss rate is really an ideal thing to aspire. The main objective of using a desk treadmill should not, however, be losing weight but instead the prevention and reversal of sitting diseases.

– Jack

Marathon Training: Cross-Training Exercises Best for Runners


“For many marathon runners, there are plenty of training programs out there, but one that really helps you prepare is cross training.”

It’s early on an October morning. The sky is tinged with a cold, slowly warming pink as the sun begins to wake the rest of the sleepy, dark world beneath it. Below, there are a few who have chosen to forgo another hour of rest and instead opted to get up and test their limits.

Breaking the crest of the hill is my best friend, running at a steady, loping pace that she could keep up for hours if she had to. She’s training for a marathon, and I offered to come out and run with her, partly for the exercise and partly for moral support.

I had done a couple of laps but (at the time) I was no runner, and was now sitting on the pavement next to dewy grass stretching. Since I’ve started stretching she’s passed me a couple of times on the track. As she continues her training, she is looking for more and more ways to push her limits so she can achieve the best time while being able to actually finish the run.

For many marathon runners, there are plenty of training programs out there, but one that really helps you prepare is cross training. Cross training involves runners, or any other type of athlete, partaking in a combination of exercises from disciplines other than their own. The purpose of this is to improve overall fitness, and for runners it can have other benefits as well, such as quicker recovery time, the prevention of further injury, rehab of an old injury, and it can be a great way to change your routine up if you get bored. Here are some tips to remember when choosing what kind of cross-training you want to do.

  1. Low to No Impact Exercise: Running is a high impact exercise, which means that it can be hard on your body. The reason for this is the range of movement you complete as you run. While most exercise involves the contraction of muscles, running actually requires the extension of muscles, specifically in the knee, to support other muscles being stretched. When cross training, it’s a good idea to choose an exercise that is low to no impact. This will give your muscles a chance to rest.

Recommended Exercises: Swimming, Cycling, Yoga, and Pool Running

  1. Exercise New Muscles: It might be tempting to find an exercise that will strengthen the muscles that you use to run, but in reality cross training is a great opportunity to exercise muscles that you don’t normally use when running. These muscle groups could have been neglected as you’ve been marathon training, so they’re not all that strong. There are plenty of exercises that offer the opportunity to exercise new muscles.

Recommended Exercises: Swimming, cycling, yoga, strength training

  1. Injury Recovery and Prevention: What’s great about cross training is that many exercises can help you recover from injuries. The easy way to do this is to choose a low to no impact exercise, like the ones listed above. By exercising unused muscles, you can lower the risk of them having to overcompensate while you’re running your marathon. Luckily, there’s a ton of exercises you can do to recover from and prevent injuries.

Recommended Exercises: Low to no impact exercises, new muscle group exercises.

Whichever exercise you choose, know that cross training is a great way to prepare yourself for the enormous undertaking of a marathon. By cross training, you will give your body a chance to recover, grow strong, and it may even help you beat a personal record!


Top Vegan Resources For A Happier Healthier You!


In this post I’m sharing with you some of my favorite vegan resources that can empower us to take our health and happiness to the next level!

Part of my 6-Week Plant-Empowered Coaching Program is making sure my clients are set up for continued success by arming them with a ton of awesome resources to continue guiding them on their transformational path. Now I’m sharing them with all of you! I sorted them by category and have personally tried all of the resources on this list so I can give you honest reviews 🙂

Vegan Food/Drink:


This awesome website and app is the best resource for checking to see if the beer, wine, and/or liquor you want to drink is vegan-friendly or not. In case you didn’t know, a large percentage of wines use animal products such as eggs and fish bladder in the filtering process. There are also liquors and beers that have non-vegan ingredients such as dairy and honey. Unfortunately these ingredients don’t usually show up on the labels. Barnivore has over 22,000 entries that have been checked and often double or triple checked by the Barnivore community, letting you know products’ vegan statuses. And now they have also released an app to make it easier to do your research on-the-go!Happy Cow

Happy Cow 

A website and app, this resource has been helping travelers and people everywhere find vegan, vegetarian, and healthy food wherever you go since 1999. This is not only a restaurant and health food store guide, but also an online hub that serves as a one-stop resource for everything veg.

Vegan Nutrition Information:  

Dr. Michael Greger releases a new, short and to the point nutrition-related video or article every single day (amazing)! He has a huge database of videos and articles at this point covering just about any vegan health related question you may have. Everything he presents is based on the latest research from the most trusted sources. Bookmark this website for sure! I also love that all the proceeds from the sales of his books and DVDs go to charity.

Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine 

This website combines the expertise and experience of over 12,000 physicians to give us the most up-to-date, scientifically accrued information on health related to diet. In addition to tons of articles, they have a free 21-day Vegan Kickstart program designed for anyone wanting to explore the health benefits of a vegan diet (based on research by Neil Barnard, M.D.).

Vegan Health 

Founded and run by Jack Norris, RD, this website is a project of Vegan Outreach and a great resource for getting answers to your top nutrition and health questions.

Healthy Vegan Recipes/Vegan Diet Plan:

Dreena Burtan’s Plant-Powered Kitchen 

Dreena’s focus is on natural, non-processed ingredients and most of her recipes are fairly simple and definitely delicious.

Fat Free Vegan 

Susan Voisin creates and posts delicious dishes made with whole foods and without added refined oils. 

Oh She Glows 

A fantastic, inspiring blog full of tasty recipes by Angela Liddon. Many of these are more complicated than I’m up for doing myself, but if you enjoy cooking then you will love what she offers on this site. There are also many easier, more simple recipes that are more my style, you just have to do a little searching to find the ones that work best for you. 

One Green Planet

There is a huge variety of healthy vegan recipes submitted and approved by people all over the world on this website. There are so many it’s slightly overwhelming, but also ensures you will find whatever you’re looking for.

The Six Weeks To Sexy Abs Meal PlanSix-Weeks-to Sexy Abs Meal Plan

This is my new book in which I guide you through an easy-to-follow 6-week meal plan that’s designed for anyone with the goal of a lean, strong body. The idea is that no matter how hard you workout, if you’re not eating the right food it’s impossible to lose those last few pounds that are hiding your six pack! I give you a hundred simple, whole-foods based recipes with grocery lists to go with them. The plan and recipes are designed to be totally do-able for even the busiest people. I make them as practical as possible. I also give guidelines for the plan so that if you go out to eat, or want to create your own recipes it’s totally fine, as long as you’re following the guidelines of the plan. The book itself is also very high quality with beautiful pictures to go with the recipes. It’s also available in kindle format. To see the blog post I wrote about the book click HERE. Hope you enjoy!!!

Inspirational Vegan-Related Podcasts:

Rich Roll Podcast 

I can listen to many of Rich’s podcasts over and over again because they are not only inspiring, they’re also entertaining and very “rearich-roll-podcastl”. Here’s how it’s described on the website (I couldn’t describe it better if I tried!) “Each week Rich delves deep into all things wellness with some of the brightest and most forward thinking, paradigm busting minds in health, fitness, nutrition, art, entertainment, entrepreneurship & spirituality. Intimate, deep and often intense, these are not interviews. They are conversations. A weekly aural dance designed to provoke, educate, inspire and empower you to discover, uncover, unlock and unleash your best, most authentic self.” He also has an app that makes it easier to listen to all the podcasts he’s ever done.

Main Street Vegan 

Main Street Vegan is a “lively hour devoted to your health, well-being, and ways to live lightly and lovingly on planet Earth.” Host Victoria Moran is super entertaining and brings you the latest on the vegan life every week. If you simply want to look and feel amazing, eat extraordinary food, help animals, and “create a physical body perfectly attuned to spiritual growth” you must check this podcast out. Victoria’s guests range from vegan authors, activists, physicians, chefs, spiritual leaders, and even some of those glittery celebs. I’m honored to announce that I will be featured on the show on February 16th, 2016!

Planted In Miami 

I found out about this one when I got a message from Jeanette asking if I would be a guest! Jeanette and Alex, the hosts, also lead the No-Meat-Athlete meet-up group in Miami and are the most delightful couple you’ll ever meet. This “New & Noteworthy” podcast is all about the business owners, artists, musicians, farmers and others who are moving Miami forward through social awareness and community engagement. From environmental causes to healthy lifestyles, animal welfare to conscious living, it’s about giving people the information that they need to make informed decisions about living a more thoughtful and compassionate life. I had a ton of fun recording the episode I was featured in – I also wrote a post on the experience and more details about the hosts HERE.

Overall Happiness:

Mind Body Green

This website is a platform with the mission of revitalizing the way people eat, move, and live. The site has a ton of articles and posts from different contributors giving you tips, tools, and ideas to help make your life better and inspire you to be your best self. The blog post/article categories are “Eat,” “Move,” “Live,” “Breathe,” and “Love” to give you an idea of the variety of information offered. I recommend checking it out for sure! I was thrilled to be able to contribute two articles, one called, “What I Tell My Clients Who Want To Eat For Toned Abs,” and one with recipes from my new book, “Slow-Cooker Sunday: Quinoa Soup With Sweet Potato Mash.”


Described as ‘meditation made relevant to modern life’, Headspace is a platform that makes meditation more accessible for everyone, especially people like me who have only dipped my toe in meditation before, never achieving consistency. The founder and former Buddhist monk Andy Puddicombe is present throughout the app (he’s got a great English accent that’s very pleasant to listen to) imparting his words of wisdom and guiding you through the process one step at a time. The first ten-minute lessons, (or exercises of the mind you could call them) are free. If you then want access to a huge library of guided meditations, and to join over a million users you can pay a monthly fee (or year in advance to make it cheaper). You can also map your journey, track your progress, and get rewards as you go. You can even buddy up with friends and motivate each other along the way. It’s pricey, but trying out the first ten sessions will help you decide if you can commit to continuing your meditation practice in which case I think it’s worth the cost.

10% Happier App 

This is a great app for newbies and skeptics of meditation. I have known about the basics and benefits of meditation for years, but until recently have not been motivated to actually commit to doing it (sitting still is not my strong suit)! I’ve struggled with insomnia for over 10 years and have tried everything else that’s ever been suggested… except meditation. So I finally decided to give it a shot and this app was a huge help to stick with it. Dan Harris gives very short, interesting videos that precede each meditation. The guided meditations begin very short – 5 minutes, and move to 11 minutes. And it’s extra cool that you get an actual person as a meditation coach who texts, emails you, answers any questions you may have, and gives you encouragement. The app starts out free so you can get a feel for it, and then you pay $19.99 (one-time fee) if you want to continue. 

Vegan-Related Documentaries:

Forks Over KnivesEarthlings, and Cowspiracy are all simply must-see movies for everyone. Please check them all out!

*For more information on the 6-Week Plant-Empowered Coaching Program, and to apply for a free strategy session with Ella click HERE

Cross-Training to Avoid Injuries

Ella Magers running

Cross-training is a kind of training involving two or more sports to help improve fitness and performance. Any athlete is prone to having injuries most especially if the kind of training that she is going through may not be appropriate to what she really needs or may have worn out her muscles from too much working out.


Cross-training helps build strength and flexibility that a single type of training may not be able to completely provide. It also kills the boredom out of simply doing the usual training routine. More and more players from different sports are already incorporating cross-training with their routine because they have seen the impact that it does to their performance.

Cross-training should not only involve wanting to increase your fitness and capabilities but also to be aware of how to prevent injuries. Athletes should not only be focused on improving their skills or agility but also to be cautious with their physical health, most especially after a competition.

Benefits of Cross-Training

Athletes may come to point wherein they feel that no matter how hard they train, changes are no longer evident. Hitting a plateau is perfectly normal.

To be able to surpass that phase, there is a need to modify the usual training technique used, and incorporating other kinds of training may be the best solution. Athletes are able to reinvent themselves by combining different disciplines into one great routine to help them perform better on their respective fields of sports.

Here are some of the advantages of engaging in cross-training:

  • With cross-training, you can include different disciplines to increase your fitness level. The conditioning type of cross-training involves increase in muscle mass, loss of unwanted fat, improvement in cardio capacity, and also faster feet movement – all in a single workout.
  • Continuous training may wear out muscles, tendons and ligaments, and this may cause injuries due to the amount of stress from working out too much. With cross-training, you are able to strengthen other parts of your body and help the injured parts to rest. It makes an athlete become healthier and more complete.

How to start cross-training

Before going all out and trying out your first cross-training experience, you may need to study up on best practices. One good way of getting valuable information would be websites like that focus on helping athletes and running enthusiasts.

Here are some of the best cross-training options for runners:


Biking can be a very effective form of training for runners. Through biking, the body is able to do more work with less stress on the body because it enhances cardiovascular fitness, thereby promoting better circulation of blood to the lower limbs.

Replace two sessions of your running activity with an hour of bike sessions at least twice a week to quicken your stride. Find a route that is mostly flat to allow balance of moderate resistance and quick motions at 90 RPM, which is equivalent to 180 steps per minute.


Swimming can be an alternative way for runners who want to improve their endurance. About 20-40 minutes of swimming, twice a week can be beneficial.

What makes cross-training successful is its potential to not only improve physical strength and endurance, but also boost the immune system. Added to that, cross-training makes workouts more fun!

Having the same kind of workout routine can be a bore, most especially if you notice that it’s getting more difficult to achieve your goal of strength and endurance. With the help of cross-training, you should be able to enjoy your next exercise routine while getting the exact same results.