The Packrafting Podcast: The magic of Alaska, mental health, & overcoming fear.

Hello everyone! 

The podcast interviews keep coming and this has been a fun one! Recently I was honored to be a guest on the Packrafting Podcast, sponsored by Alpacka Rafts and hosted by the wonderful human and new friend that is Dulkara Martig

As the title implies, the Packrafting Podcast content is anchored by the guest and host connections to the sport, though, I feel confident that even if you aren't a packrafter you will find inspiration and relatable content within the dialogues that take place here. 

The episode I was on is titled: The Magic of Alaska, Mental Health, & Overcoming Fear.

Topics covered include: 

  • Thoughts on winter in Alaska: 5:01Growing up on the Kenai Peninsula: 12:37
  • My experience in the Wilderness Classic: 14:56 
  • My first experiences packrafting - including a couple of sticky situations: 22:06
  • Some strategies to help overcome fear in the outdoors: 26:40
  • The origin story for Summer Strong and Ski Babes: 42:23
  • ...
Continue Reading...

The Tutu Test

 

Are you able to use your outer glutes to stabilize your hips? 

Take this quick test to find out. 

The Tutu Test came together after one of this year's Ski Babes asked for some help identifying if she was using her outer glutes or not.

I had just taught a Halloween Ski Babes workout in costume (sweaty ballerina) and realized how helpful it was to be wearing a tutu when demonstrating proper hip alignment! 

And so the Tutu Test was born. :) 

The goal of the Tutu Test is to help you identify if your outer glutes are doing their part in stabilizing your hips.

And if they're not, I've got techniques in this video to help them pick up the slack. 

When you're able to activate your outer glutes, you take some of the load off your IT Bands (if you have a chronically tight IT band this might be part of what's happening). 

You'll also have better luck keeping your knees in alignment over your ankles, which is a huge part of helping prevent knee...

Continue Reading...

Podcast: It's Okay to be a Beginner in the Outdoors

Hello! 

I loved this conversation I had with Martha Rosenstein on the Outdoor Explorer Podcast! We highlight overcoming barriers to getting started with outdoor adventuring, remembering what it's like to be a beginner again, and how to build functional strength at home in anticipation of winter sports.

The topics we covered include: 

  • What is a mental health informed fitness trainer?
  • Sarah's journey into mental health and fitness world
  • Anti-Bro Culture
  • How can we do better when it comes to creating an inclusive outdoor rec community?
  • Weakest link syndrome
  • Progression of new skills
  • Functional Strength and Adventuring 
  • Defining Summer Strong and Ski Babes 
  • Getting Started in Backcountry Adventures
  • Self-Awareness in navigating nutrition 

I hope you will have a listen and that you enjoy the conversation! If you have thoughts or any of these topics resonated, I'd love to hear from you

You can find the episode in a couple...

Continue Reading...

Podcast: Building a Strong Body & Mind

Hey there! 

I recently had the opportunity to have a chat with on the Connect with Sheila Botelho Podcast. Sheila is a certified health coach,  lifestyle entrepreneur, and mom of two, best known for her online wellness programs, mentoring, and self-love passion. Her podcast focuses on how to connect to your soul's calling and take action on it. 

We covered a lot of ground in this short interview, and I hope you'll enjoy listening as much as I enjoyed chatting with Sheila! 

The title of this podcast episode is: Building a Strong Body & Mind

Topics covered include: 

  • My role models for the active life I now live: 3:57
  • How I combined my passion for the outdoors and mental health and started my business: 5:16
  • Cultivating mental strength: 10:26
  • Luc and mine's traverse of the Western Brooks Range: 17:09
  • Gaining courage to step into new experiences: 18:56
  • How to put the nervous system to work for us: 22:41
  • The evolution of faith in my life: 30:50...
Continue Reading...

Arctic Refuge 2020

Luc and I had lots of ideas about potential summer trips for 2020, but when COVID hit and rural villages across Alaska shut down-- with rightful concerns about limited medical infrastructure and intergenerational trauma from the Spanish Flu-- we knew we needed to adapt our recreation plans to keep us self-supported, out of villages & on the road system.

Luc put his trip-planning skills to work and came up with a ~350 mile loop that started & ended on the Haul Road, got us out to the Sadlerochit Mountains (which we'd wanted to explore since we floated past them in our 2017 Arctic Refuge Traverse) and incorporated a food drop that some friends of ours already had planned. We pulled in Will Koeppen (the pics in this post are Will's, & I'd encourage reading the daily journal entries he posted on his Instagram, starting here) and hit the road.

My biggest take-away from this trip was how well the nervous system and mind/body...

Continue Reading...

We know how to hunker down

winter Mar 29, 2020

What a world we find ourselves in! At the moment of writing this (March 29, 2020) people around the globe are social distancing, taking shelter in place, and hunkering down due to the COVID-19 pandemic. We're isolated, out of our normal routines, and in a time of huge uncertainty in our world.

[Also a huge shout out to those in critical operations who can not work from home and are on the front lines of the pandemic. Thank you for your work.] 

It's a global experience that those of us in the north know a lot about. We know about isolation, spending lots of time inside, not knowing how long the storm will last, and the impact that leaves us with. We know about cabin fever. We just came off a long, dark winter, and survived pretty much intact.

   

Of course it's also true that while similarities exist, this is also very different from a typical winter isolation. For many of us, winter hunkering down involves potlucks, tea with friends, game...

Continue Reading...

Nervous System 101

 

I have a webinar coming up on Wednesday 3/11 about how nervous system health impacts our workouts, adventures, relationships, and our daily lives.

This is a topic I've been diving DEEP into in my own study -- & life -- in the last couple of years, and I'm excited to share what I've been learning with you.

Thankfully our nervous system is good at learning too, which is part of what makes it so interesting to work with. We can train our nervous system to work for us -- and teach it a new way if it's been overreacting. Super cool and impactful stuff. I'll share my favorite tools with you and give you an opportunity to experience a couple of them in the training.

Find more about the Wednesday training here

Continue Reading...

Are you at risk for an ACL Injury?

injury prevention knees Feb 10, 2020
 

How are your knees these days?

I've got a couple friends who are struggling with knee injuries at the moment, so the subject of healthy knees has been heavy on my mind. I know how devastating it can be to have a knee injury - or an injury of any kind, for that matter - so I'm hoping today's video will help you assess the health of your knees and more specifically assess if you're at risk for an ACL injury. 

This is a personal passion topic for me, because when I was in High School, I tore BOTH of my ACLs with a couple months of each other. ‍ 

It was a low point for me, for sure (Read: I was heartbroken). But luckily my surgeries went well, I was able to rehab and re-strengthen successfully, and I've been able to be as active as I want (including playing rugby, running, skiing, backpacking, etc.) with no issues ever since.

My experience has made me super passionate about helping other people PREVENT injuries like mine, though, which is what the video I...

Continue Reading...

Western Brooks Range Traverse

In June 2019, my husband Luc Mehl, our friend Josh Mumm, and I set off on a three-week traverse across the Western third of Alaska's Brooks Range. Luc and I had traversed the two other thirds of the Brooks Range in previous summer trips, and were curious to see what we'd find on this final and most remote section.

We started on the Ambler River, on a drainage we'd floated past on a previous trip and had wanted to check out at the time. Then it was raining, cold, and the Ambler was a flooded muddy brown color, so even though we were tempted to stop we didn't. This time it was pretty different! 

 

Luc & I had done some walking along the Noatak River a few years back in the worst tussocks we'd ever seen, so we were mentally prepared for slow and tricky travel. Incredibly we found the opposite -- lots of nice hard, flat-ish ground, and much brush. 

But the best part was that the further west we traveled the more caribou trails we ran into. By the...

Continue Reading...

Warmup & Mobility for Pregnancy

 

Pregnant folks, this one's for you~ 

Finding the right kinds of movement for your body as it adjust throughout pregnancy can be a moving target. That's why I recommend that all of my pregnant clients develop a daily mobility routine that feels good in their body and can act as a bit of a barometer to check-in with yourself. How are my hips today? Can I connect to my pelvic floor? Any new aches or pains? What's feeling good?

Notes about pelvic floor work: pregnancy is a beautiful opportunity to learn to contract & relax your pelvic floor muscles, though I'm a firm believer that there are huge benefits for everyone, especially women, in connecting with their pelvic floor. Pelvic floor work can help with anxiety (when we relax it, we send a relaxation signals through the whole nervous system), trauma recovery, insomnia, and digestive health, among other things.

Now that you're building a baby, though, it's extra important that you start solidifying your...

Continue Reading...
Close

50% Complete

Yes! So glad you're here.

Add your email below to open up your access to the 20-Min Busy Day Workout. 

You'll also be included on my email list, where I send out updates & resources on fitness, mental health, and adventure. It's low-pressure, lighthearted, & easy to unsubscribe at anytime should you wish to.