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Welcome to the October Challenge: #31DaysofMindfulness and #MeatlessOctober! This challenge is a collaborative project to promote the implementation of mindful self-care practices and health conscious nutritional choices.

So what exactly is Mindfulness you ask? In its simplest definition it is “the quality or state of being conscious or aware of something.”

During this challenge you will be challenged to become more aware or conscious of three things: 1) your daily mood and state of mind, 2) how you treat your body physically, and 3) what you feed your body nutritionally.

Mindful Minute

Beginning with the ‘Mindful Minute’. This “Mental WOD” is designed to be a self-reflective moment in the course of your day to promote positive self-talk, daily inspiration, and inner peace in the chaos of your day to day life. Each daily reflective thought is very personal in nature as they come straight from the heart of yours truly. So get your heart strings ready for a reflective journey into the source of your daily moods, attitudes, and thoughts towards yourself and the world around you. Challenge yourself to incorporate these reflective thoughts into your daily mindful mobility yoga practice to help you focus your intentions for the workout and the journey ahead.

Mindful Mobility WOD

The next component of the challenge day involves mindful movement with the mindful mobility WOD. In this part of the challenge, we will embark on a daily flexibility and mobility journey to promote daily physical self-care using a basic yoga sequence to help you cultivate a routine flexibility conditioning practice.

Why yoga? There are numerous health benefits to a regular yoga practice outside of general flexibility and improved mobility. The following link from Yoga Journal outlines a long list of about 38 Health Benefits of a regular yoga practice.

Prehab vs Rehab. Practicing prehabilitation helps to prevent the need for rehabilitation from injuries caused by not being mindful of your body’s imbalances. Prehab, as defined by National Institute of Health, is used by doctors to prepare a patient for the inactivity associated with post surgical procedures. However, prehabilitation (prehab) goes much further than that and into everyday life. Many physical therapists and athletic trainers use prehab as part of a daily program to help prevent nagging injuries in clients that are caused by physical imbalances as well as the larger ones that can be caused by athletic injuries and require surgery. 

Cultivating a consistent personal prehab self-care routine can help to prevent injuries by allowing you to discover and focus on correcting your body’s imbalances. In general a good prehab program consists of warming-up, stretching to full range of motion such as in a regular yoga practice, a cardiovascular component like walking or swimming, and a resistance training component mixed with functional movements that relate to everyday life. All in all regular yoga and flexibility/mobility practices are an important key component to any personal prehab program.

Meatless Meal of the Day (MOD)

Why Meatless you may also ask? Studies have shown that a plant-based diet has many benefits to an individual’s overall well-being and the only  two commonly associated risks with a plant-based diet are inadequate protein intake, and vitamin and mineral deficiencies, both of which can be remedied with proper protein, vitamin, and mineral supplementation, such as through products from Garden of Life brand, which provide organic, raw, certified vegan and gluten free protein, vitamin, and mineral supplements. So don’t let the ‘risk’ of missing protein and nutrients scare you from this journey.

Each day will feature a Meatless Meal of the Day (MOD) idea to try at home if you like getting creative in the kitchen. I personally due to my hectic work-life schedule order my meatless meals from a meal delivery service called Trifecta Nutrition , just choose the Vegan or Vegetarian meal plan depending on how meatless you are ready to be.

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Trifecta nutrition Sweet Potato Chickpea Salad

As you know there are differences between Vegan and Vegetarian, as well as differing forms of Vegetarianism. Veganism omits everything from animals, the meat of animals and their products (eggs, milk, cheese, etc.) True vegetarianism is similar to veganism, however, there are variations and exceptions that some use for individual reasons and preferences, such as ovo-vegetarianism which allows for the consumption of eggs, lacto-vegetarianism, which allows for the consumption of milk and dairy products, and pescatarianism which allows for the consumption of fish and seafood.

So whatever route you choose to take in this Meatless October journey, choose what works best for your personal health goals and overall well-being. The goal here is to make health conscious and physically nourishing decisions about the foods you choose to consume on a daily basis. 

So welcome to #31DaysofMindfulness and #MeatlessOctober I look forward to enjoying this nourishing journey with all of you!

See you all for Day 1….until then ~ I AM CANDICE MARIA ~

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  • *LATE POST*

Ask me no questions, I will tell you no lies about the goals I am chasing on this day….lol! No in all seriousness, I am officially 11 weeks away from my first competition in almost 2 years. After a 2 year break from the stage, I’m back at it again with a new focus, a new coach, and a new team…only God knows what’s in store for me in 2017!

Stay tuned…week by week prep progress videos are next….

Competition Prep Update | 11 Weeks Out | Vlog

10 Weeks Out | Progress Check-in | Vlog

Up next a quick weekly update regarding my second week of competition prep and whatever else is on my mind on a Friday morning at 5am. I am currently 10 weeks away from the stage…feedback from my coach after sending in today’s progress pictures was that everything looks good and on track to be ready for the show in May. Also, it has been decided that we are going to double up on this show and try a crossover category and do figure and bikini….so stay tuned.

9 Weeks Out | Progress Update & Gym Life Rants | Vlog

The following is my 9 weeks out from competition update and progress report! Plus random gym and fit life rants while stuck in traffic accompanied by the charm of Southern living! Enjoy…

8 Weeks Out | Figure Bikini Prep Update Pt.1 & 2 | Vlogs

Sneak peek into my countdown back to the stage….8 weeks out headed to posing practice plus a few progress pics.

and

7 Weeks Out | Figure-Bikini Prep | Vlog

Progress updates…countdown to the stage…7 more weeks! Lucky 7! LOL! Just a general update on where I am and where I feel I am headed with my prep, what I am anticipating after this week and waiting to find out what adjustments will be made with my nutrition among other aspects of the process!

Figure-Bikini Prep Vlog | 3 Weeks Out Update

This is it folks….the final 21 days until showtime have begun! Progress pictures and posing practice every week, plus upcoming nutrition changes..I’ve been MIA for a bit between week 7 and this week  due to work and school demands, so I am praying I can hold it all together by May 1st when the semester ends and I can take a break from the stresses of grad school at least and focus 110% on my prep for the show!

This is also the last weekly update video…the next vlogs in the next blog post will feature the final 24 hours leading up to showtime….Thanks for watching and until next time…

NPC BodyBe1 2017

…I AM CANDICE MARIA

*LATE POST*

Well this is it…I am on my way to the competition prep and posing clinic workshop in Seattle with Physiques Northwest. Excited to see how things go, what I learn about myself and my potential in my sport over the course of the weekend as well as try to catch up with an old friend and take in some of the sights and sounds of beautiful Seattle while I’m in the area!

Hope you enjoy my highlights and thoughts from the weekend! Feel free to leave a comment below:

Pre Seattle Trip Expectations | Vlog

Sightseeing highlights and tour of the city with my long time friend Gary, during my mini vacation trip to Seattle for the Physiques Northwest competition prep workshop…

Sightseeing in Seattle | Vlog

 

This last video features my personal thoughts and outcomes from my trip to Seattle for the Physiques Northwest Competition prep workshop. I received some interesting feedback to take with me for the rest of the 2017 season. No definitive competition plans, but I do know what categories to work towards.

Post Seattle Trip Thoughts | Vlog

Until Next Time….I AM CANDICE MARIA

Well this is it…I am about 2 days away from the competition prep and posing clinic workshop in Seattle with Physiques Northwest. Excited to see how things go, what I learn about myself and my potential in my sport over the course of the weekend. So stay turned to my channel and other social media feeds for highlights from the weekend!


If you have questions or comments about any health, fitness, or nutrition related topic be sure to leave it in the comments section below. The best questions/comment I will turn into videos like the one you are watching now.

Be sure to subscribe to this channel for future updates and to follow me on my various social media platforms and my website/blog. Will truly appreciate the support.

 

Until next time….I AM Candice Maria

 

 

 

Counting down to my very first official posing clinic and competition prep workshop ever since I  began my figure competitor/fitness model journey in 2013…lol! Looking forward to the trip to Seattle and meeting with the coaching team of Physiques Northwest http://www.physiquesnw.com

Also just my thoughts and reasons on why I took a break from competing and my goals going forward, looking ahead into my future as a physique athlete and aspiring fitness model.

 

 

Be sure to subscribe to my YouTube channel for future updates and follow me on my various social media platforms and website blog. Will truly appreciate the support. Until next time….I AM Candice Maria

 

Most recent video blog content posted to date on my YouTube channel: http://www.youtube.com/c/CandiceHubbard

 

 

 

Until next time….I AM CANDICE MARIA

workout with Candice

 

Happy New Year 2017 to you and yours! 🎉🍾

Hope you had a safe and peaceful transition from one year to the next….

Today’s post is about the popular topic of New Year’s Day “Lucky Foods” with a peak into what’s on my “lucky New Year’s Day” Dinner plate 😂🍽

Now I don’t believe in superstition, but I do like the idea that most all of these “lucky foods” are consequently “healthy foods” or in my case for bodybuilding  they would be considered “clean or lean  foods”! 

So here’s a quick look at what I consumed from the New Year’s  Lucky Foods list on this lucky 1st day of the year 2017: 

Fruit: 

Not just any fruit a “round” fruit. It’s symbolism represents coins (money) and prosperity. This “lucky apple” was my post workout snack today! 💪🏃🏋🍎💱

So aside from its “lucky New Year ” benefits it’s jammed packed with fiber and vitamins to fuel a very productive and prosperous year! 

Greens:

Leafy green foods are said to represent money or a year of financial gain. So my leafy green of choice on this “lucky New Year’s Day” is Spinach steamed into the shape of round balls to symbolize bank rolls (ok not really: they just come out like that) 😂

However,  I may not be able to spend my spinach or save it in the bank, I can reap the health benefits of the abundance of healthy nutrients found in spinach, I’ll be able to enjoy the financial fruits of my labor for many years to come 💸

Beans:

Beans, like round foods and fruits, are also said to represent coins (money) 💱 , prosperity and longevity. 

My lucky beans of choice today were black beans,  known for their high fiber content and bad cholesterol fighting, healthy ❤ and healthy  weight management benefits. I think that’s enough to qualify these little guys for the longevity award. 🏆

Grains:

Aah the grains….yeah I know any paleo followers out there, it’s ok. I won’t dwell on this one very long.

Grains are said to symbolize abundance because they swell when they are cooked,  unfortunately they tend to swell elsewhere for most folks as well (dear carb bloat do not visit me this year). Any who,  my grain of choice is a gluten free ancient grain: quinoa. Packed with all its protein and fiber goodness, it’s a grain I can safely say I am ok consuming in a reasonable abundance.  🍲

Fish:

Last but not least,  the Alpha and Omega of everything I love about life in general is symbolized by fish. Aside from fish scales representing silver coins, but the concept of progression and moving forward as well as abundance in such activities is said to be symbolized by the forward swimming motion of fish and the fact that they typically travel in groups called schools 📚😂 Talk about forward thinking and progression for the year ahead! 

My lucky fish of choice this New Year’s Day is salmon, one of my all time favorites. Jam packed with protein and Omega-3 fatty acids for a strong and healthy start to a very productive and forward thinking new year!

Happy New Year 2017🎉🎉🎉

Bon a petite 


Until next time…. I AM Candice Maria 

 

What’s up world! It’s been forever and a day since I have blogged or vlogged, so before the clock strikes midnight and 2016 escapes me without at least sharing something with you, I have compiled a little vlog of some of my reflections and thoughts on New Years Eve resolutions and just day in the life stuff related to my training regimen.

Happy NYE 2016 | Vlog Post

My goal for 2017 is to be more consistent in updating you all on my training and progress and just life in general. A lot has changed in my life over the past year that has kept me away from the keyboard or the video editor for that matter, so please forgive the rough entry as I’m just trying to get back into the flow of things and get back into a routine of sharing my “day in the life” fit life and life happenings with you all.

Stay tuned and as always until next time…..I AM CANDICE MARIA

nothing-works

 

Staying fit on the fly, or lean on the go, doesn’t have to be challenging, nor does enjoying social meals with friends. When I used to travel a lot with my former career, Panera Bread was always one of my go-to places to eat while on the road traveling from city to city every few months because of their generally “healthy” menu choices. However, as a fitness professional and competitive aesthetic athlete, over the years I have learned that you never have to settle for just what’s on the menu, especially when you have precise health and fitness goals to meet. Always customize if and when you can, something I like call lean couture.

Ms. Natural Alabama State Figure Champion
Ms. Natural Alabama State Figure Champion

Below you will see how I reduced the fat and turned a normally greater than 262 calorie fattening menu item into an under 500 calorie nutritionally dense and deliciously filling meal that can be enjoyed solo or socially through restaurant menu customization.

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The Panera Bread menu item: Roasted Turkey & Avocado BLT. Half a sandwich ordered off the menu as is: a whopping 255 calories before side items or beverages.

SO what exactly did I do to not only reduce the calories of this hefty half of a sandwich, and be able to enjoy a fun side item?

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Home screen of the myPanera app

I customized my order through the myPanera app that can be accessed through Google Play or iTunes App Store, or simply visiting the Panera Bread website.

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I am allergic to tomatoes, hate pork so I hate bacon, but love turkey and the health benefits of avocados, mayo is a very unhealthy fat whereas mustard has metabolism boosting properties, and don’t need added salt, also I prefer the nutrients in spinach over lettuce, and the bloat and inflammation reducing benefits of cucumbers and onions, plus whole grain bread is simply a healthier complex carbohydrate bread of choice

If you are a myPanera member, or simply have a smartphone or access to a computer, simply go online and set up an online ordering account. From there, you can pre-order a customized entre’ for rapid pick-up at any Panera Bread location and quite possibly if you decide to dine-in, you can pre-select your customizations, and see the complete nutritional totals before leaving home, and read your list of custom changes for your order at the restaurant counter.

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Get the Facts: Nutrition facts that fit my macros and my fitness goals. NOTE: be sure to calculate the macro exchange ratios. Panera math is not the most accurate: Totals: 366 calories (Fat 2.5 g x 9) + (Complex Carbs 63g x 4) + (Protein 23 g x 4)

So my customized Panera Bread menu item was ready for pick-up during the busy Saturday afternoon lunch hours after leaving the gym, made exactly how I wanted it, fit and filling, for a busy afternoon of writing, creating and blogging.

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My Customized Panera Bread Roasted Turkey and Avocado NO BLT half sandwich on whole grain bread just 366 calories, plus a serving of baked chips and black coffee: Total meal: 496 calories

Until Next Time…Train Smart, Eat Smart

~ I AM CANDICE MARIA ~

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Gym Etiquette 101 with Candice Maria

The ungodly stench of the wildebeast in your local gym, workout with caution lol! FYI: If you notice you have that same stench, get medically treated or just simply wash your butt before you come in to workout in your local gym. Please be courteous of others. This is a public place. Just my thoughts at the moment.

Until next time…I AM CANDICE MARIA

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Post gym reflections