Podcast: Building Mind & Body Strength

Greetings!

Wow, I just had the chance to sit down with Kaitlyn Kasso and had a really fun time! Kaitlyn is an awesome photographer that helps women develop their personal brands. You can follow what she's up to on Instagram @kaitlyncassocreations. She also runs the Inspired by HERstory Podcast: Getting Comfortable with Being Uncomfortable.

We talked in detail about my first time in the Alaska Mountain Wilderness Classic, both of our experiences with imposter syndrome, and what it's like to be a beginner in the outdoors. I really think there is a bit of something for everyone in this episode! 

Topics covered include: 

  • The story of my first Wilderness Classic: 5:50
  • How my business came to be: 19:38
  • When to confront challenges and when to back down: 22:40
  • Workout Perfectionism & Imposter Syndrome: 26:10
  • Building confidence when you're new outdoors (or at anything): 33:10
  • Building a capacity for failure: 38:12
  • Advice on how to deal with Imposter Syndrome: 42:43
  • ...
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One Year of Sistering Support

One year of Sistering Support

In April of 2021 SMH Training officially marked the one year anniversary of our Sistering Support program!

In honor of that milestone, I wanted to share some information about how it’s gone, who we’ve helped, and why financial support and equity pricing are an important part of our business model.

 

First things first – what is Sistering Support?

"Sistering" is a construction term in which a post that's holding up too much weight is supported by additional posts on either side. This metaphor conveys what we're after: helping take some of the weight off those who are carrying a lot right now. Especially for BIPOC, queer, disabled, bigger bodies, and others who are underrepresented in the outdoor world.

Ideally, finances wouldn't keep anyone from health, movement, or outdoor time. And if we’re going to realize our goal of a more diverse outdoor recreation community – we have to work to make the opportunities to thrive in...

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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
  • ...
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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...

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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...

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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...
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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...

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We know how to hunker down

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...

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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

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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...

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