If it Don’t Make Dollars, it Don’t Make Sense.

Let’s keep it real: businesses are designed to make money. Sure, there’s childhood dreams, life-long aspirations, passion, talent and love involved – but the purpose is positive cash flow. The whole idea is to make money in a different way.

Dreams & passion aside, we all need income to survive. To pay bills, keep a roof over our heads and food on the table. We don’t always like to talk about it, but it’s true.

When you start a business, the scariest leap is the financial one. Will this business make enough money for my life? Will I go into debt? Will I lose everything?

We were lucky that our business was pretty cheap to start. We had cleaning supplies, our real estate licenses, some software and a shared laptop in a one-bedroom apartment. That was it. As the business started to take shape, though, we constantly came up to the same obstacle:

This would be great for our business, but does it make financial sense to do so?

The answer to this question popped up as a lyric from one of our favorite groups: if it don’t make dollars, it don’t make sense. If it doesn’t work, it doesn’t work.

We wanted so many things: a luxe office space, all organic, locally made cleaning products, sustainable/fair trade cotton linens, and a third person to help us out.

We settled for a new laptop, a cheap desk from Walmart, and generic cleaning products/linens from amazon. It was what made financial sense at the time, and it was absolutely the right choice.

Two years later, we’re moving into a beautiful three-bedroom home so we can have a proper office. We’re still working towards our third person, but for now, we’ve started contracting out the cleanings and laundry work, so we can focus on accounting and growth.

It’s what makes dollars and sense, where we are right now. And that’s what has empowered our business to grow and improve without putting us into debt.

So keep in mind – if it doesn’t make dollars, it doesn’t make sense. You have to put YOU and YOUR business first. Before all the partnerships, collaborations, and shiny, attractive services you can’t quite afford yet. It doesn’t mean you have to give up on what you really want – it just means that you have to take your time to get there.

Lifting, Running, Uncategorized

Motivation Monday: Do what feels right.

The other day I woke up at 4 a.m. for a 15-mile long run before work. I was sore, tired, under slept, achy, grouchy, hungry, and cranky the day before. I was positive I wouldn’t wake up for my run and subconsciously sleep through the alarm as an avoidance tactic. Begrudgingly, I set my clothes, shoes and water out the night before. Just in case.

When the alarm rang at 4 a.m., I popped right out of bed and laced up my shoes. I didn’t feel any of the cranky feels of the previous day or even tired or mildly annoyed at such an early wake up time. It just felt right.

As I took off on my run, it felt even more right to be winding through dark, empty streets and cool air before the heat kicked in and the rest of the world woke up. I watched the city I so dearly love awaken, as the light gently began to creep in as the darkness faded away. Honolulu slowly rubbed its eyes and awoke and unfolded its morning and I was there, with each and every step and breath, to see it.

The key with a healthy lifestyle – just like every other aspect of life – is to find something you truly enjoy. Even something you love. If I had to cycle, or lift, or swim for over two hours I would have been ready to throw a temper tantrum – in fact, I probably wouldn’t have even made it out of bed.

Find something you dig. Discover what works for you, and then run with it – literally 🙂


Lifting, Running

Motivation Monday: Reaching Goals


Every Monday is a gift. A fresh start, a clean slate, a chance to start the week with an open mind, positive vibes and a grateful heart.

We all have goals. Whether it’s to eat better, or run farther, to train for a race or show or just to see some definition in our arms or abs, we all work towards something. Goals are the ultimate motivation, because our efforts are moving us forward. With that momentum, we’re pretty much unstoppable.

Here’s some goal-oriented motivation for your goal-oriented selves and a kick off towards a great week!

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Processed with VSCOcam with s2 preset


Lifting, Running

Stay Fit While Sick

A few weeks ago, a brutal cold knocked me OUT. I mean sleep-for-three-days, don’t-leave-my-house and drink-nothing-but-green-tea sick. I was forced to rest because I didn’t have much of a choice, but the second I got better I went right back to working out. What can I say? Old habits die hard.
The first day I felt a little better I played a soccer game, woke up the next morning for a morning swim and played another game that night. Except I couldn’t play much, because my body completely gave up. My legs locked, my lungs ached and I couldn’t breathe. It was bad enough to that I finally gave in and went to the doctor.

I found out I had bronchitis, because I hadn’t rested properly and let my sinuses and lungs heal from the congestion. Now, I had to pay the price of taking a full week off. Which for me sounded like torture.

I was training hard for a half marathon before I got sick, and had built up strength, stamina & endurance I did not want to use. Even though I couldn’t work out per say, I used my free time to focus on these activities to stay as fit as possible while I was sick.

1. Stretch 

If you’re a runner, you know the plight of stiff muscles – such a buzzkill. To keep my legs and core strong & loose, I did a few gentle yoga routines every morning and stretched liberally before I slept each night.

I found this to be really good for my sanity, too. I woke up peacefully and drifted off to sleep with ease. This is one practice I’ll keep in my daily routine even after I’m back to 100%.

2. Walk

People tend to underestimate the power of walking, but our grandparents had it right. Walking is good exercise and a great way to keep legs strong & loose. It also provides some mental clarity and a spiritual boost, if you’re into that kind of thing.

Walking is also really easy to fit into your routine. I walked during my lunch break, to the store, on the beach, with my boyfriend’s dog…you name it.

3. Eat well

This one is super import if you’re sick, injured, of healing. I filled my meals with nutrient-rich fruits, nuts, veggies, seeds and herbs that offered a breadth of antioxidants, minerals and vitamins to boost healing. I cooked all my dishes with coconut oil, garlic, ginger and tumeric, threw spirulina & dark leafy greens in all my smoothies and covered my salads with nuts and seeds.

I also kept my food relatively bland and easy to digest, so my body could focus on healing. Eating this well made a huge difference in the recovery process; I actually could feel myself healing from the inside out. 


The best part about being sick was given myself free permission to nap. I went to bed at 8, took naps after work and on Saturday mornings. Sleep is a pivotal cornerstone of health, wellness and recovery in general – even more so if you’re active.

Happy healing everyone 🙂 hope you have a great week!

Lifting, Uncategorized

Motivation Monday: Spartan Fit!


In case you haven’t noticed, I get down with plenty runs, races, and events. As a life-long athlete, nothing brings order and happiness to my life quite like training for something. It’s exciting, all-encompassing, and effects every aspect of my life: sleep, training, diet, nutrition, alcohol, and choices. When I have a schedule full of races (especially Spartan Races – AROO!) I find myself sleeping more and earlier, making healthier food choices, and cutting back on alcohol. It’s an easy, natural process because it makes logical sense.

That’s part of the reason I’m proud to participate in Spartan Races. It’s not just a race – it’s a thriving, vibrant community of people and an equally healthy, vivacious lifestyle. It’s a way of being, focused on health and mental and physical badassness all year round. That’s why all of us Spartans are so addicted and adamant about our big, international family. This lifestyle of working hard, eating right, and being tough is personified in co-founder Joe De Sena’s newest book, Spartan Fit! spartanfit

Spartan Fit! is a 31-day guide that won’t just get you ready to tackle one of our kickass obstacle races. It’s a cheat sheet to crafting a Spartan life from the ground up – no gym, products, or gimmicks required. The book focuses on utilizing our own bodyweight, mental toughness, and spirit to create a strong, sexy, and successful body that’s capable of handling any obstacle with gusto.

The beauty of a no-gym, no-equipment workout plan is multi-faceted; it preaches self-reliance, which in turns boosts self-esteem and confidence in all areas of life. It empowers people that are logistically, economically, or socially unable to join or uncomfortable in a gym setting to still get a great workout without monthly fees or judgment.  You can workout in your garage, the park, while your kids are at school or the baby’s sleeping. NO excuses, no exceptions.


Since the Spartan Trifecta is coming out here to Hawaii in August (yay!) I’ll be gearing up to do a giveaway very soon! Hawaii folks, remember that the race sold out last year, so be sure to sign up as soon as possible!

Mahalo, and happy lifting, running, and being a badass 🙂

Running, Uncategorized

Motivation Monday: Body Love

This week I read an incredible article on FitSugar about body confidence, size acceptance and straight up happiness. In the cacophony of cleanses, fad diets and spotty nutritional advice all over the internet, it’s easy to forget the first step in making any positive changes in life: self acceptance. Self Love. Crafting your own happiness from the mind first, and the body second.

Although frustration, anger, and self hatred can be great motivators, changes are more powerful when they come from a place of love, instead of fear. Positive intentions yield positive results, whether you believe in karma in the cosmic sense or not.

As a thicker female, I’ve felt the societal pressures of body image weigh me down for most of my adolescent and adult life. Loving yourself when you’re not textbook ‘perfect’ isn’t easy – and growing into my shape as a teenager was rough. It hurts to see my younger family members going through the same thing – figuring out where they fit on the body spectrum, how they should feel about it, and what they can do to stay healthy physically without compromising their mental and spiritual wellbeing.

As much faith as I have in this world, I’m a realist at heart – to me, accepting myself at whatever size/shape/fitness level I’m at makes logical sense. Why would I feel bad about myself, when I’m the only me I have? This is the only body God/the Universe have blessed me with. These genes, curves, legs, are mine and mine alone. They have carried me through foreign countries, across marathon finish lines, powered me through incredible hikes and kicked me on to killer waves.

The least I could do in return is to love and appreciate them, exactly as they are.

Running, Uncategorized

Motivation Monday: Staying Fit & Happy While Injured

  Being injured is no walk in the park. It’s upsetting, frustrating, show-stopping, and causes general panic among the most seasoned athletes and runners. When friends of mine get hurt, I joke, Hey, what’s so bad about resting and watching Netflix for a week? When it happens to me, I want to throw my computer throw a window. I’m so bored from watching Netflix and being so still. The reason I run is because I’m restless; now, all that energy has nowhere to go. Except to seriously interfere with my sanity.

I’ve been off the road for about a week and a half, after injuring my back from a colossal case of overtraining. I was loving the changes in my body and energy levels so much that I got too crazy and woke up one morning physically unable to get out of bed. Back strains are no joke – it’s humbling how a little pain here and there can derail almost any activities or plans. The back is the boss of the body, and mine was forcing me to do nothing but rest.

Despite the pain, I’m shocked by how quickly I bounced back. The first day, I was convinced I’d be out of the gym & trails for at least a month. Yet, somehow, I felt better the next day….and the next. I was healing fast, and today, I’m finally read to tackle a short run and see how I feel.

Being injured after building up such a solid base and months of consistent good eating and training taught me a few things about being injured. While I’m no expert, here’s what I learned 🙂

1. Taking good care of yourself = faster healing

When we take good care of ourselves whole-heartedly – which means getting enough sleep, eating healthfully, and working out consistently – our bodies reward us. Particularly in times of injured strife. When we function well as a whole, we’re able to bounce back a lot faster.

 2. Nutrition is key

No matter how tough your workouts are, it’s the kitchen where abs are made & injuries are healed. Protein, potassium, flavonoids, antioxidants, iron, magnesium…they all aid in healing. Since I’ve been out, I’ve been shooting for at least 100g of protein a day to help my muscles, tendons and ligaments sort themselves out.

3.Keep it active

Rest is super important, but there’s a difference between laying-there-helplessly-all-day rest and active rest. Active rest means there’s lots of (gentle) stretching, foam rolling, icing, elevating, compression, and movement happening to facilitate healing. Even when I could barely move, I forced myself through some painstakingly gentle movements and stretches, followed by ice and a nap. The most important thing is to keep the rest of the body functional. Gentle yoga and stretching are great ways to let the body heal without losing strength & flexibility.

4.Rest is crucial

Once I felt a tiny bit better (not healed, but just better than before) it took every inch of self control to keep myself on the couch and off the trails. The problem is that a lot of runners and avid fitness freaks get hurt, rest for a few days, and then go back out there and go HAM – thus undoing all the rest they’ve already done. Unless you want to be on the bench for another week, it’s more cost effective to rest a few more days instead.