The Heart of Transformation – My Fitness Journey in Progress

I don’t allow society or the ‘norm’ whatever that is to dictate my health, mind, or body – “She” belongs to me! ~ Ria

 

Seeing Your Hard Work Take Shape

So I woke up this morning no alarm slightly sore but glowing! Last night was an emotional day. I was releasing some unacknowledged pain and sadness I thought I’d already released during this New Moon, Full Moon, Moon Eclipse, Equinoxes, Blood Moons (- smirking- ) these past few months have been eye-opening and full of personal truth and resolution. Spiritual transformations and physical transformation!  I was feeling a bit sorry for myself, when I decided to pick up my bags (literal and metaphorical) and head for a swim.  Surely that water would help clear my head and aid my spirit.  I looked at my app and realized I had another work out before my Rest Day.  Yesterday being Leg Day, I was still slightly sore but in need of some transformation. Day 9, Chest and Triceps!

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Expanded Facility

This facility I hadn’t been to in months (maybe a year aside from the pool) had expanded. I was so surprised and excited once I discovered they had added new equipment even though tiny in room size, this gym was equipped with everything and more. Kettlebells, dumbbells, free weights, olympic bars, curl bars, tricep bars, hex bars, smith machines, mats, medicine balls, Bosu balls, exercise balls, weighted balls, massage balls! :‑O
It was an athletic dream aside from the Marine base gym I visited last year. This gym for the local public was dope! And I’m thinking how to make this a permanent gym while in the area because Planet Fitness is “ehhh!”

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September 4, 2018, Chest, Triceps, (added Abs, Calves and a Swim!)

I’m so amazed at how this transformation is taking shape- literally! ~ Ria

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Knowing What You Need and Listening to Your Body

In addition to the workout above, I added an abdominal routine! That left me sweating before my swim and jacuzzi session.  I will do this routine at least 4-5 times a week because it made my total routine complete. My abs are the hardest for me to loose and I realize that if I don’t focus on their development “it aint gonna happen!” After twin boys and a daughter and several C sections my abdominal wall split from its natural anatomy and unfortunately my pregnancies left me with extra skin that never stretched back to shape. Something like a Kate and 8 the mother (Kate Gosselin) who had the 8 babies and had to have an abdominoplasty to return her stomach to its original size, look, and aesthetic.

My Secret Body Shaming 

I was told by plastic surgeons I have a 6 pack under my extra skin! “Yuk,” “Yikes” and “Wow!” all at the same time. I was blown away at their comments “We had another very young women your age who did quite well! You have a fit body type.” This was at my 150lb body-weight at my initial consultation. I’ve pretty much been in a secret self body shaming cycle for the past ‘few’ years since taking on fitness and gave up a few times because my abdominal section just wouldn’t budge beyond the rock hard underneath the childbearing scaring.

I kept this in dire secret never telling a soul and its affected so much of my life including my sexuality and intimacy! I’ve since decided to say “Fuck it! I‘m gonna keep going no matter what and see what happens to the rest of my body!”  I have to see how far I can go. No, I have no interest in competing professionally or turning into a professional body builder! I just want to be REALLY FIT for my body type and my ideal look and feel, sorta like a  Jada’s-mom-fit, Angela-Bassett-fit aesthetic look! I have to defy my “age” and the societal norms that say being over 40 is old, and being ‘old’ means out of shape and struggling with dis-ease. (Especially in the Black community!) I say “NO” to the mental programming. I am choosing a lifestyle that is serving my highest good and the rest will follow and fall into place. This is for no one else but me – I owe myself this opportunity to shine!

 

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Ab Workout Routine: 2-3 Reps to Failure. Russian Twists (Weighted), Alternate Heel Touchers, Bottoms Up, Plank, Cocoons, Air Bikes, Side Planks, Elbow to Knee, Repeat, Repeat! This should leave you feeling an ‘ouch’ on your tummy – now you know you’ve got it in! (smile)

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September 4, 2018

 

Finding the Right Facility for Your Goals

I usually try to cover up during my workouts, I wear hoodies and zip up to my neck! While at Planet Fitness this week around 11pm (after work) I was surrounded by group of young Arab men who continuously commented on my physical “attributes.” Their comments made me so uncomfortable I gathered my water bottle and exited the gym. This new facility, however, was safe and well equipped for the novel fitness person as well as for the school athlete or military veteran all of whom were present yesterday evening.  It’s important to find the right facility for your goals and comfort level- not all are created equal so be objective, envision, and plan for your workout sessions accordingly.

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Friday,  August 31, 2018 – 122.7 lbs

I say “NO” to the mental programming. I am choosing a lifestyle that is serving my highest good and the rest will follow and fall into place. This is for no one else but me – I owe myself this opportunity to shine!  ~ Ria 

The Heart of Transformation

When I woke up and looked in the mirror my arms looked like well-sculpted parts of someone else’s body!!! I was blown away at how I had changed since January being closer to 150 lbs at 5 foot 0 inches. I don’t have a morning pic but a photo from last week I will share (pictured above). I’m so amazed at how this transformation is taking shape- literally! I am determined to be 50 and fabulous (in just a few short years ahead!) I really didn’t mind my 150 lbs body to be honest, “thick” is trendy and desirable these days so women at almost any size feel appreciated, loved, and happy with their body type and weight. For me, however, I wanted to simply ‘see’ what transformation looks like on me. I am proving to myself that I can go all the way to make significant gains on my own terms and in my own “time.” Plus I have a goal (image) in my head that wont disappear no matter how lazy or non motivated I get from time to time. I get back up and get back in and keep it moving. I keep hearing the voice “You can do better! You’re more than this!” And its this voice that keeps me on this focus of self-transformation and consistency.

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January 2018 at 150lbs

 

I really didn’t mind my 150 lbs body to be honest, “thick” is trendy and desirable these days so women at almost any size feel appreciated, loved, and happy with their body type and weight. ~ Ria

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January 2018 Collage as the Thick Ria

 

Fit in Progress Pics

I can actually see the difference in my body shape taking form. I was afraid my arms would get too muscular and have me looking like a little man woman but they are actually looking good, still feminine, but slightly defined and toned. I love ♡  it! A few more tweaks and it’s all maintenance from here!

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From Thick Girl to Fit Girl – Progress Pic- August 2018

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122.7 lbs – Slowly but surely, hard work taking shape! 08-31-18 as the Fit Ria

If I can inspire just one person to eat healthy, exercise, and continue to learn (mentally and spiritually) then I’m doing my job here on this planet Earth!

Be Happy, Be Abundant, Be Empowered! 

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Ria

Herbal Healing Hacks – Thyroid Support Herbs, Everlasting Life, and SunGazing Immunity

Vegan Soul Food at Everlasting Life

Who doesn’t love vegan soul food? The tasty indulgence of childhood Southern favorites with the shedded guilt of pulling heavy meat industry resources from the planet. Ahh, biting into a buffalo-sauced, meat-free wing is as close to extravagance. Although hard-core vegans would argue “why fake a meat dish at all?” I get it and lived that life as well. Today, I’ve embraced the middle road. Less inclined to be dogmatic about my diet but strict enough to stay within the imaginary lines of remaining consistent on the organic, natural path.

“Excuse me Sis, but you need to teach a tutorial on how to stay fit.” – 30 something guy in white suit, Everlasting Life Restaurant, Maryland  

08-26-18_Everlasting_Life_MD_Store.jpgI have to admit the last time I’ve been to Everlasting Life was probably shortly after their opening on Georgia Avenue, NW, Washington, DC almost two decades ago! The DC restaurant was since bought by Woodland Vegan Bistro in 2013. It was the first time after Queen Afua’s class (2000) near Howard University where Pyramid bookstore was housed so many moons ago, I had the sensual pleasure of tasting (for the first time) mock tuna, mock egg salad and seaweed salad that bursted with so many flavors my taste buds still anticipated its memorable suggestion.  So after hitting BWI Airport and the gym out in Laurel I was famished and in need of some nutritional healing. I remember hearing Brother Red Pill and Professor Griff speak so highly of Everlasting Life this past August during their lecture circuit and since I was within driving distance I had to check them out. The line was long enough for to me figure out what I was going to sample by the time my turn came and I chose cabbage, mock mac and cheese, and various buffalo and barbecue meat-free wings. I admit I was searching for more dark green raw veggies (as I follow a half raw food to cooked food ratio in almost all of my meals). I almost picked up the seaweed salad but thought I haven’t had ‘soul food’ in so long I’d give it a try. After all, I am always eating raw greens and salads so why not?  As I strolled to my car to tear open the container,  before I was approached by a 30-something year old man in a white suit who had been on his phone talking real estate money moves and appointments, “Excuse me Sis, but you need to teach a tutorial?”

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” A tutorial?” I laughed questioning in amusement exhausted emotionally by the turn of events in my personal life. “Yes, a tutorial on how you keep yourself so fit!” I was shocked at his comment. For one, he had come off to me as — lets say someone I thought uninterested in women, secondly, he was hella young (lol, oh Stella!), thirdly, I hadn’t been to the gym (seriously) in a few weeks and felt super guilty for my lack of motivation and allowing my personal life events to dictate my schedule and energy.

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August 25, 2018 – Ria Sweetraw aka Daria, me at 122.7 lbs (shocked face)

Everlasting Life Food Review

The food was pretty good, although I personally would have incorporated more various green foods – light green, dark green, blue-black, and purple foods with more “alive” energy that activated and nourished the melanin of its predominate customers. Everlasting foods were more mock soul food items that appealed to its demographic community. What struck me, further, was the amount of black people who were in those lines, some looked like your traditional ‘woke’ brothers or sisters while others did not. That struck me as how things have really changed where more blacks had embraced a more healthy lifestyle and seeking being vegan and vegetarian as a very real way of life. This awakening was transparent in the lines and popularity this store has in the community.

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For my years of being vegan and vegetarian, however, I enjoy many different types of eclectic foods from many geographical origins of the world that are vegetarian and vegan based. I prefer raw veggies, greens, bitters and sweet fruits, and cooked beans with fresh, spicy or herbal dense tasting flavors. Overall, I loved the buffalo meatless wings and the cabbage was slamming. I’d frequent this vegan soul food spot in a heart beat!

Restaurant Rating Review

Everlasting Life,  9185 Central Ave, Capitol Heights, MD 20743, (301) 324-6900
Menu: 
Veteran vegan cafe/coffee shop providing cooked & raw soul-food dishes in a casual space.
Rating: ♡♡♡♡ (4 out of 5 hearts) 


Ripley’s Garden, Washington DC – Sun Gazing Copper Immunity Boost 

Ripleys Garden (Mary Livingston Ripley Garden, located  is located at the Smithsonian Museum grounds, Outdoors, between Arts & Industries Building & Hirshhorn Museum, has more than 200 plants, hanging plants, borders, raised beds, seasonal annuals and exotics.

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Garden Rating Review

Ripley Garden,  Smithsonian Museum Grounds Outdoor Garden, between Arts & Industries Building & Hirshhorn Museum
Attraction: 
Seasonal Annuals, Raised Flower Beds, Exotics, Herbals, Hanging Plants, Bees/Butterflies
Rating: ♡♡♡♡♡(5 out of 5 hearts) 


I truly needed some healing sun! My weeks had been difficult emotionally and spiritually and the pentacle came Sunday morning when I had to cancel my flight to Costa Rica where I had planned on an Ethnobotany conference at Hidden Garden Sanctuary. I felt defeated by the forces and felt burnt out emotionally, physically and even spiritually. I found myself finding free parking near the Smithsonian and walking into a garden.

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In my own personal experiences with Sun Gazing, Agnihotra (AM and PM Sun Rituals), Surya Namaskara Yoga practice, Sun Bathing and Sun Meditations, there is a powerful alchemy that takes place during the sun interfacing with the skin (integumentary system)  receptors and our cellular molecular chemistry which boost immunity, organ health and functionality,  and longevity.  ~ Ria Sweetraw

The sun was beating down igniting and warming my skin and I embraced this kind of healing I was desperate for it. I roamed through the beautiful garden finding rosemary, varieties of sage, edible flowers, exotic shrubs,  and their sheer beauty adorned and visited by bees and butterflies. I melted into this green space absorbed in the world of plants, water fountain sounds, and beauty looking at all the names and shapes of the trees, shrubs and perennials from around the country and world.

 

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As the sun kissed my caramel skin it soon roasted my flesh into a reddish dark copper complexion which made me feel a natural high (probably from mere mental exhaustion) and lack of sleep. Nevertheless, the sun penetration did its job by the middle of my video I was feeling happiness fill my being and some rejuvenation. I  was reading Jeff T Bowles,The Miraculous Results Of Extremely High Doses Of The Sunshine Hormone Vitamin D3...” and in my own personal experiences with Sun Gazing, Agnihotra (AM and PM Sun Rituals), Surya Namaskara Yoga practice, Sun Bathing and Sun Meditations. I can assure you the Sun energy is one to be studied with reverence and an open eye and heart. Sun gazing, Sun bathing and Sun meditations have enormous benefits especially for people of darker hues aka melanin. There is a powerful alchemy that takes place during the sun interfacing with the skin (integumentary system)  receptors and our cellular molecular chemistry which boost immunity, organ health and functionality,  and longevity. Perhaps I will share more on this in a later post. 😉 In any case, I was rejuvenated both physically, emotionally, mentally and spiritually!

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Herbal Healing Hacks w Ria Sweetraw | NaturalSelfGoddess™ Blog♥


Quick Herbal Remedies Hack

I was approached a week ago by a coworker who insisted I give her remedies for her thyroid problem. I was shocked because I didn’t remember telling anyone about my years of herbal medicine practice. But for years I studied herbs and healed my children (and myself) with herbal remedies I got from books and healers in the community. I still wouldn’t call myself an herbal healer. I’ve listened to cutting edge researchers who are up on melanin, chemistry, ethno botanical herbs and foods and use scientific terms with skill and expertise. I am a fan of these teachers in the field of natural health, botany, chemistry, and melanin studies.  I’m still learning and expanding to include in my own personal practice. I smile though when I share basic healing remedies I’ve personally used on my self or my children (who are long gone from home).  What I gave her were some rather basic remedies and lifestyle changes (I stressed lifestyle changes) because dis-ease does not happen by chance or over night. Disease or imbalance is really maintained by poor habits; ignorant eating choices, poor exercise habits or lack thereof,  and negative, self-limiting emotions.

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Sample Meals for Meat eater or Transitional Meals 

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Thyroid Support 

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Turmeric, Ginger, Ashwaganda, Gotu Kola, Ginseng, Licorice, Echnacia, Bladderwrack (Seaweeds), Selenium, Vitamin B12

Liver Flush Juice for Liver and Kidneys

Raw Juices, follow eating a healthy diet heavy in green raw vegetables and leaves, avoid caffeine, alcohol, Replace Coffee with Green Teas such as Matcha Tea, Yerba Mate, Sencha Green Tea 

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Im not a fan of carrots as they are a hybrid vegetable so I will omit that from raw juicing but you can add if that is your taste.

I am fond of Beets and use them to also cleanse the kidneys and liver as a raw juice.

Ingredients: //apples, beets, ginger *optional dandelion leaves

  • 1 beet, rinsed, lightly peeled and quartered
  • 1 apple, peeled, cored and quartered
  • 1 Tbsp size piece of fresh ginger (skin removed)
  • can add dandelion leaves

Blend and strain.

Kidney Flush 

Ingredients: //celery, cucumber, parsley, limes

  • 1 celery 
  • 3 cucumbers
  • 1/2 bunch of celery
  • 3 limes (or lemons)
  • 1-2 cups of water

 

Water Tonic

Ingredients: //lemons, ginger, turmeric water

 

Fresh Water and Coconut Water (Electrolytes) 

Hydrate your body! Your body (organs, cells, etc) need water and are made up of over 65% water so keep the circulation of water recycling in a healthy way, your kidneys will thank you!

Exercise

3-5 days per week devote to some form of exercise such as yoga, stretching to increase flexibility, weight training such as lifting iron weights in repetitions to increase muscle strength, walking (if choosing this as the ONLY form of exercise is valuable to reduce heart disease, lower cholesterol, and body fat), swimming known to work the whole body (whole-body workout for all sizes and ages, great for people with injuries and asthma), dance

Sleep, Rest, Relaxation from Stress 

Breathing practices, intentional breathing helps to regulate, relax and strengthen the Spirit, practice Pranayama (science of breath) techniques, Sleep (8 hours deep sleep) preferably in a dark room with no electronics such as phones, wifi, tvs or computers to reduce EMFs (Wifi/Radiation) that effect and interfere with brainwaves, nervous system, and depress immunity,  melanin, hormonal health, Meditate – practice mindfulness 10-30 minutes a day, take some time to go into Nature to get grounded, breathe, go bare foot on the earth

Sun Gazing meditation and other meditations for Love (open hear chakra), Healing & Relaxation

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Aromatherapy

Essential Oils used for thyroid (hypothyroidism)
** note: please research carefully to choose the right essential oil for your condition

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  • cloves
  • myrrh
  • cedarwood
  • lavendar
  • sandalwood
  • spearmint
  • lemongrass
  • peppermint
  • frankincense
  • rose geranium
  • pine

Hope this helps! and I hope you injoy my video. It took me all  day as a learning curve getting around Adobe Premiere and working around certain obstacles in the application along with YouTube but my first video! It will only get better!

Peace, Love, Wealth, Wellness and Empowerment!

Ria

 

Words of Power – Adding mantras to your physical routine

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Adding mantras to your physical routine

Mind over matter, thoughts create things, if you think you can or you cant you’re right, all these philosophical phrases are true. They can make the difference between winning or failure, attaining your goal or watching it drift up with the wind of your dreams. Truth is you create your reality, everything you have or don’t have is a result of your deepest perception and belief in your self.  What you say to your self (the internal dialogue) shapes your existence, what you attract, and your progress.

Adding mantras to your physical practice are key to helping you shape the life you desire and body you envision. They can help keep you focused, on track, and committed to your vision (goals, targets, and dreams).

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Mantras in History

Mantras have long been used to reshape reality and create change. Known as “sacred sound or utterances” these syllable word groups are believed to bring forth spiritual and mental powers. Some of the oldest mantras were used by yogis and priests in the holy temples of ancient India (Indus Kush) predating Aryan invasion, however, the oldest known mantras are in Vedic Sanskrit.  Today these mantras aid meditation, increase abundance, and empower change to create the life you desire.

Healing Benefits of Mantras

Mantras can induce altered states of consciousness, trance, and reprogram the subconscious mind. The use of  “power words” in your spiritual practice and meditations empowers your heart and chakra centers, aligns and attunes higher frequencies to your sense of self, grounds and uplifts your spirit, and sets forth positive affirmations of change and dynamic transformation on a soul-level in the universe. Your words are vibrations that create change and take form into solid matter, experience, and outcomes.

Power words are like seeds that take root and form abundant trees full of healing fruit, seeds, nuts, berries, flowers, and medicinal bark. Your words can flourish, create, destroy, preserve, and activate. Mantras are perfect creative tools to mindfully place intention as a vehicle for your transformation.

Read more  Goddess Wisdom on EvolutionaryGoddess Project 

 

where is ria?| fitness check’in

It’s been some time since I posted to NaturalSelfGoddess the Blog, for one I’m happily in college and killing it so far (fingers crossed) in my courses. Truth be told I LOVE SCHOOL, ACADEMICS AND LEARNING!  (i’d learn something new even if i wasn’t in a classroom)

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where is Ria? Fitness check in collage.  Photo Credits: ©2017. Daria Smith Giraud, DwriteDesignStudio & Ria Takharu Media LLC.

Since childhood, I’ve been competitive in academics and treat it much like a sport. I push hard, I’m relentless in my pursuits, and I expect the very best of myself knowing full well that I have the potential and aptitude to achieve beyond my expectations. Since I’ve picked body building (body sculpting) back up it’s only helped me to shape my mind to become more disciplined and push harder passed limitations. Just last week, when my Trainer Friend was missing in action and I had some free time to myself, I lifted over #210 lbs on the leg extension! It was at that moment I realized, I could do and be so much more. Adding to more realization that self-motivation blossoms in the midst of adversity and challenge (should that be the lesson of the moment).  I no longer ‘complain’ about my challenges, misfortunes or illusionary defeats but recognize them as opportunities for pure growth of mind, body and spirit! so much appreciation, gratitude and innerstanding~ One Love, Gains and Creative Abundance! Ria

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“as you think, so shall you become”

Leave it to the profound wisdom of the martial arts master, sir Bruce Lee to bring the truth where it counts, “As you think, so shall you become.” Life can often be full of challenges that we must rise to overcome, rediscover ourselves, and create the balance our soul, spirit, mind and body need to live a long healthy life.

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As my dear soldier friend shared with me this beautiful May spring season, “find your formula.” As I began the process of recalibration of my mind, the magic quickly manifested from “dream” to “real” right before my eyes. I am thankful for the beautiful souls that have both taught me the tough lessons and the genuine love.

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Life is truly your thoughts and the actions you create. 🙂 As for working out, I went from 139 to 129 without much effort at all. I was rather shocked when a trainer shared my weight and bmi stats with me.
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Since living in Georgia, I hadn’t realized just how much I’ve missed the Water! As a child and my adult life, I lived near a body of water. Literally, a creek in my backyards, on the Potomac River, the Chesapeake Bay, Accokeek Creek, Quantico Creek, Neabsco Creek, Aquia Creek, Doeg Creek, Pohick, Accotink, Cameron Run, Rock Creek, the Po River of the Ma and Ta rivers, just to name a few I grew up near that filter into the Atlantic Ocean. Life is somehow different being on that body of sacred water with many names. There is an air of ancient tribal history that predates mans memory and their history books. The names themselves are preserved with vibration that water provides.
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Today was the first day back into the mystic and magic of ‘water.’ My childhood play with water and discovering my body movement within this elemental body. My new Speedo, googles, and cap had the lifeguards, and lane swimmers assuming I was a pro but I was just excited to be back in this element practicing my child-like form. Goal 2016? Learn proper form and become a really good swimmer! Because the water not only heals the soul and spirit but provides 10 minutes of super crunched calorie burn and body strength.

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And I love to have variety when exercising where I can do crossfit one day, swimming and weightlifting the next.

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Here’s to rising up at 4am, getting in your meditation, affirmations, and early morning exercise!

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Be Your own Superhero! – Burpee Tuck Jumps for @Home Fitness with Ria Sweetraw

Invest in Yourself! Commit to 30 minutes a day of physical exercise 3-4 days a week!

Empower yourself, Improve yourself, Inspire others to live a healthier more balanced lifestyle! Here are  just a few benefits of daily exercise practice:

  • Improve Your Sex Drive and Happiness
  • Increase Immunity and overall wellness
  • Reduce risks of Cardiovascular Disease, Cancer, Diabetes
  • Build Bone Density and Strength
  • Increase Flexibility, Agility and Stamina
  • Restore Brain Health !
  • and More!

 

  • Be Your Own Superhero! Invest in 30 minutes a day 3-4 days a week! Empower, Improve, Inspire!

    Be Your Own Superhero!
    Invest in 30 minutes a day 3-4 days a week! Empower, Improve, Inspire!

 

Being My  Own Superhero! Fitness Anywhere Anytime Anyplace 

So in my Be In + Live In the Now-Zen energy  I created some videos doing some @’home’ fitness.  I have to admit, I am far from where I envision myself but it’s a lot of fun learning! And I look forward to growing, expanding, perfecting, improving, and figuring it all out to expert-level.  I even had a wonderful invitation to a top notch gym to train and shoot some quality video! YEAH Good Vibes!!! In the meantime, I will keep posting, sharing, expressing and evolving (smile).

Ohh I have updated my old Youtube channel to include some ‘ancient’ videos I posted on Facebook so now I can simply add my Youtube channel as part of my media (sooo cool!) Feels so new and refreshing!!! And I’m so excited to improve, grow, expand and share!

InLove,

Ria

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Burpee Tuck Jumps ♥ RiaSweetraw ♥ NaturalSelf Fitness

Happy Fortitude Fitness ♥ Friday

Happy Friday Family!
(Happy New Moon in Sagittarius and for the vedic kemetic astrology Opichius New Moon!) I had no idea it was a new moon although I think a few days ago, I was looking at a crescent waning moon and thought “Ahh, how gorgeous” before rushing into my next task.  At some point I did find it was in Scorpio! Thank God for Breath, Yoga and the slow-down -and -pause moments to place you back into center.  I am thankful for that awareness.

Fyi: If you are a must know metaphysics enthusiast like myself and wonder how you can use the new moon for your benefit, here’s how:
New Moon Magick: New beginnings, new ventures, fresh starts, new jobs/hunting, optimism, new love, romance, hope and faith, strengthening your health and good intentions.  New Moon in Sagittarius: Philosophical,  Health and Sports, Compassion and Freedom-loving, Optimistic, Chanting, Yoga, Natural Quest for Knowledge. Truth and Wisdom.

New Moon in Sagittarius Art: Steel Eyes

New Moon in Sagittarius
Art: Steel Eyes

Yesterday was Cardio for me, today Dirty 30! Working my way back into the Gym..I’m so VERY excited. After visiting my Trainer Fitness friend on his birthday at his new gym this week, I was very wound up eyeing the equipment and space! I truly do love training, working out, dancing, nature and the best organic, nutrient rich foods; guess I’m a true Sagittarius, Virgo moon! Haha! Something about the Primal Physical Element mixed with a heap of Hermetic Mentalism that turns me on! What can I say- Strength is Sexy! Mind, Body and Spirit! 😉

"Thought is the Sculptor who can create the person you want to be." Henry Thoreau

“Thought is the Sculptor who can create the person you want to be.” Henry David Thoreau

And in keeping in that alignment, Happy Happy Fortitude Fitness Friday! Whoot whoot!

  • Get Your Early Morning Superfood Protein Shakes and Smoothies
  • Eat Whole Foods after your workout or training
  • If You are doing the Intermittent Fasting remember to Hydrate and Train Smart!
  • Remember to use Good Form
  • Hydrate some more!
  • Show and Share Gratitude and Appreciation!
  • Get Shyt Done!
  • Love Yourself Some More!

Fortitude Fitness Fridays Inspiration!

Fitness Fridays Inspiration

Fitness Fridays Inspiration: Maggie Watson

Self Acceptance and Change : A Great Mix of Action !

Self Acceptance and Change : A Great Mix of Action !

Make it Your Intention to Be Both; Give and Take! True Reciprocity!

Make it Your Intention to Be Both; Give and Take! True Reciprocity!

BElieve in YOUrself! Stay Consistent! Eat Right, Eat Clean, Work Hard!

BElieve in YOUrself! Stay Consistent! Eat Right, Eat Clean, Work Hard!

EatClean Fight for Fitness!

Eat Clean, Train Mean,  Fight for Your Fitness!

 

InLove,

Ria

 

 

Best Belly Fat Exercises for Quick Weight Loss

Want to loose Belly Fat and Burn Calories Fast?
According to research (Colorado State University) you can burn an extra 200 calories by doing just 2.5 minutes of sprint intervals!


Sprinting – for the Fastest Calorie Burn

Sprinting is so awesome! I didn’t find out until last night just how effective these interval exercises truly can be. After doing them in the early morning, about half way through my day I noticed I felt and looked different. I could actually see my belly fat disappearing! This has been the most difficult area of my body to reduce fat. True I’ve been in full submission of my nutrition plan – no bread, no sugary snacks, no late night eating! But this fast? I was amazed at how I felt almost instantly after doing the Sprint – Jog and Hills intervals.  So I started to investigate, here’s what I found!


FloJo, Olympic Athlete.

FloJo, Olympic Athlete.

Fact: You can burn more calories doing intervals of jogging and sprinting then a full class of regular yoga! Want to reduce belly fat and get lean muscle- Sprint!  According to research (Colorado State University) you can burn an extra 200 calories by doing just 2.5 minutes of sprint intervals.  

This is what a sprint interval looks like:

  • 30 seconds of full-on sprinting
  • 30 to 90 seconds of jogging or walking

sprint


More Ways to Burn Calories! 

Stair Run – Build endurance, stamina, this High Intensity Total Body Workout 

Credit. Health Fitness Expert.

Credit. Health Fitness Experts.

Don’t have enough time to exercise? Try Stair Running for 10 minutes a day! This exercise builds muscle,  builds endurance, sheds fat and tones your entire body! You can burn almost 100 calories walking up the stairs for 10 minutes, or almost 200 calories running up the stairs for 10 minutes.

For a more accurate body weight, height, age calculation  go here! According to this calculation I can burn 753 calories in 1 hour with Stair Running training.

Swimming – Hands down swimming is ‘the’ elite, most effective form of exercise overall!

For weight loss and toning, swimming is the best cardiovascular exercise recommended by doctors to reduce obesity and gain a full body workout.  You can get healthier faster, shed belly fat, tone more muscle groups simultaneously, increase endurance and strength! You can burn 500 calories in 1 hour of swimming. Tip, the Butterfly stroke burns the most calories at about 750 calories for 1 hour training. The only kickback is swimming may increase your appetite so eat low sugar, whole foods with lots of healthy leafy greens and whole grains!

Jumping Rope – For quick weight loss and upper body toning! 

woman-jumping-ropeTrying jumping rope if you want to loose weight fast and tone your upper body in a quick, portable, fun way.
Remember those jump rope days as a kid out on the play ground for hours at a time? Okay so jump rope training nowadays is way more complex then our kiddie days but it’s well worth the time and investment in practice! You can burn 100 calories in 1 – 10 minute jump rope session and 1,000 calories total a week in practice! 


Ria Sweetraw Takharu

MY COMING OUT, FINDING BALANCE, LISTENING TO YOUR BODY

WHERE HAS RIA BEEN?

You probably think I jumped off the face of the earth but I was  recovering from  a serious bout of Anemia and had to take a break from weight training lifting and exercise. It was awful! I had extreme guilt, shame and was in denial. For years I bragged about my almost perfect health and going Vegan was something I aspired to become to prove to myself and the world that it was ‘better’ more spiritual and optimal for health even in extreme fitness. What I was shown was something quite the contrary. I turned the shame and isolation into a time of deeper spiritual innerstanding of peer acceptance, self acceptance, food and nutrition and personal dietary needs to obtain balance, wellness and fitness.

whereisria_fitness_riasweetraw

BEAST MODE THEN WHAT?

whereisria_fitness_riasweetraw2It’s true when I’m into my fitness I go hard and had no idea that according to TCM (Traditional Chinese Medicine) some Spleen meridian issues (pathologies) causing Anemia and other heavy blood flow can be aggravated by intense and excessive exercise! My almost 2 hour workouts with heavy weights and cardio didnt seem to help my situation at all.
I was absolutely floored when my medical doctor insisted I have a blood transfusion (?) huh, is this that serious I thought and no I would not place some random persons blood into my system. I’ve suffered from Anemia for many years, especially as a vegetarian. This time being Vegan proved to be stressful on my body producing allergies I’ve never had like cashew and other fickle bouts of allergic reactions. This time my usual period of ‘cleansing’ felt more like a nightmare. I was literally sick and could not understand why.

FOODPICS_RIASWEETRAWFor over 20 years, being Vegetarian and Pescatarian  was my way of life, this time going back to Vegan proved too much for my body and my emotions.  It was as if I was being initiated at yet another level of what reality is, should be or can be. That ‘it’ (in my case ‘diet/nutrition’) was absolutely ‘factual’ on an individual intimate level that can not be judged or validated by anyone other than my self. And that true ‘enlightment’ would prove that all things are both light and dark having their sun and moon, good and bad, what was seen as medicine could in deed be poison if taken in excess and without a balanced approach.  Although, this all seemed very logical AND spiritual simultaneously I suffered with this resolution  and my actions emotionally and spiritually.

In my personal evolution, I no longer over emphasize or stress about my weight (well not that much) in fact I’ve pretty much given up the dogma I had about every little thing I eat or don’t eat.  I eat what I want (within reason) with no guilt or stress and ironically I weigh less than I did when I was on a strict diet! I have turned away from replacing ‘religious’ attitude and behavior with the “Raw Food Movement” or “Vegan” ideology. haha I can even laugh about it now. I was so obsessed!

But two months ago, I was really quite devastated when I was diagnosed with severe anemia I felt great guilt and bewilderment. I thought me being Vegan as the socially accepted eco-friendly super-conscious movement stamped me as spiritually acceptable and within the social guidelines of my peers and the gurus I worshiped.

Anything but VEGAN for me was unacceptable and yet my body was rejecting this way of eating and seeing it as an imbalance rather than balance! WTF! I was embarrassed and felt like a fraud for having this dis-ease, symptom, imbalance. The whole ordeal became  quite personal and intimate. In secret, I was in a kind of spiritual-emotional anguish and had a hard time admitting that I was somehow different from the pack. I had to find out that there is no cookie cutter way or answer for the “All” and that “Some” are just plain different requiring whatever the body, mind and spirit sought as balancing chemistry to properly function in her immediate environment. That environment has everything to do with food choices, that these variables and  adjustments should be carefully taken into consideration. There is no ‘right’ or ‘wrong’ stamp on my nutrition simply what works best for my constitution in the environment which I reside, the work I do,  my emotional space, home life, etc., is my ‘right’ way and path.

If I was residing in a warm tropical climate, my food choices would better be suited and reflect that temperate climate, amount of Sun, melanin chemistry and molecular food choices, just as certain American climates and geography warrant a varied array of food choices, herbs, seeds, roots, etc.  These variables seemed to propose very real and factual  variables in my health and in my final choices.

What I had preached and followed for so many years was leaving me exhausted, lifeless, debilitated, and imbalanced. What once felt rejuvenating, refreshing, and whole had none of the effects they once had on my constitution. I was a very different person at a very different time, place and space and needed very different variables to balance my life and produce the wellness I deserved.

PERSONAL JOURNEY TO BALANCE, COMING OUT! 

I am not ashamed that I eat small amounts of organic, free-range meat and poultry on occasion. My body seems to have adjusted to the chemistry and my anemic symptoms (Spleen meridian pathologies, according to TCM Traditional Chinese Medicine) have vanished. Of course other areas of my life have also healed in the process of me moving forward both on a psychological and emotional level as all things are connected fundamentally.

46BD_PICS_RIASWEETRAW

I embrace the many changes in my personal life and have left my past to it’s past forging ahead in a very newly rebirthed Body, Mind and Spirit! People are still amazed when I say I am 46 and I no longer hide the fact that my age is just a number that has produced wisdom and strength in this incarnation.

I am so ready to get back into the gym, train, finish my new certifications in Personal Training,  Fitness Nutrition (NASM) and Wellness Coaching (ACE) courses and get back into the best shape of my life! I really do love athletic BEAST MODE along with some dance, yoga and meditation! 
~ with Love, Light and Ascension Ria, December 7, 2015

Fitness Milestones | Celebrating 30 Days of MyFitnessPal!

DAILY ACCOUNTABILITY

Sometimes it’s important to toot your own horn! Stay humble but acknowledge the changes, transformations and shifts in consciousness and habits. There are times when I get discouraged, I want instant results and I have to remember this is a process that requires patience, commitment, perseverance, and a kind of ‘obsession’. I am cultivating a focused mind. It transcends into all areas of my life. This is good!  I am thankful for every sweat,  sore muscle,  and session I take on.

CREATING FITNESS PLANS | GOAL TRACKING

Okay so this is my 30 Days of Continuous Journal entries of my Nutrition and Fitness Plan! Yeah… It’s more than Okay to Celebrate the small steps and big leaps! They mean you are moving, creating, and following your plan and empowering your wellness lifestyle.

 

Celebrate, recognize and mark your Goal Milestones!

Celebrate, recognize and mark your Goal Milestones!