All posts by Brianne Skidmore "Mom in Motion"

Brianne is an Arizona native who spends her (exceptionally hot) days taking care of her son, three young daughters, and black lab, Chance. After marrying her high school sweetheart, Brianne began to seek out and develop her talents and passions as a wife and mom. A creative spirit at heart, she has enjoyed being able to design homes along with her general contractor husband, and has taken courses in cake decorating (fun but messy) , faux wall finishing (exhausting, period) and oil painting (better than…yoga). But Brianne finds her greatest pleasure in working with other women as an NASM certified personal trainer. She believes strongly in the benefits of eating clean and training hard. Her own workouts consist of spinning, running, weight training, plyometrics, Crossfit…whatever sounds fun in the moment. Brianne’s clients all know that diversifying their workouts is the key to getting and staying in amazing shape. Brianne is continually reading up on, participating in, and taking courses in all new and growing areas of fitness and nutrition and can’t wait to share all of her findings with the Skinny Mom community.

Hot on the Trail: Trail Running Essentials


If you’ve ever participated in a trail race before, you know how different it is from running on a paved road or sidewalk. On a trail, you often find yourself on a single track with one person ahead of you and one behind, and you talk. You talk to break the silence, to make the time go by faster. Because you are constantly concentrating on the terrain, scanning for footholds and avoiding hazards, you are totally unable to let your mind wander. So, in trail running, you talk. You are able to enjoy the runners, not the run.

Off-road races are incredibly difficult, but we have listed a few trail running essentials to make it just a little bit easier:

Trail running shoes: The main difference between trail running shoes and regular running shoes are the soles. While running shoes have a smoother sole and may slip on dirt and rock, the thicker, nubbier soles of trail running shoes will grip the trail. Trail running shoes are also made of a heftier material, helping them to stand up to the rough conditions and giving added foot and ankle support. We love Brooks Adrenalines.

Sunscreen: Whether you’re on the road or on the trails, face sunscreen is a must to ward off burning and premature aging. You never want anyone to know you’re a runner based on the texture and lines of your face. Rodan + Fields Broad Spectrum Sunscreen is amazing.

Hairbands: The reason we love American Apparel cotton twist scarves so much is for a couple of reasons. First of all, they consist of wire that allows them to twist and stay any way you choose. You can even tie one around your head, twist at the neck, and tie up a ponytail at the bottom! Second, they are super wide so you can pull them over your ears if it’s chilly, or scrunch it up if you’d like.

trail running

Lip balm: No matter what the temperature, your lips will get dry if you properly breath out of your mouth while running. You should keep an EOS lip balm in your purse, in your pool bag and in your gym bag just so you always have one on hand. Plus, the Lemon Drop flavor has added SPF for your outdoor runs.

Hydration, Hydration, Hydration!! Did we say hydration? Always assume you’ll be out there longer than you think. There are so many different ways to tote water, so just choose which one you like best. We prefer the handheld kind, but there are also Camelback backpacks and hydration belts for those who like their hands completely free of anything. Remember, you may need to be able to grab onto rocks from time to time.

Phone and music player: Bring your phone! It’s important to be able to communicate while you’re trail running. Accidents happen, and when you are off the beaten path, a fully-charged cell phone is a necessity! Pandora is just an added bonus.

Photo Credit:,,,

Photo Credit:

Now, get out there and enjoy the world you live in!


Get “Gym Ready”

Looking clean and pulled together at the gym is more than just vanity and an attempt to be noticed. In fact, if that’s your goal, your workout will suffer. The only one you should be thinking about in the gym is YOU. However, when you feel that you look good, and your confidence is at a high, you will, undoubtedly, perform better. Why do you think that the gym is covered in mirrors? There is great benefit to watching the way you are performing a lift, your posture, your muscle movement, and when you can’t bear to look up because you are not happy with your appearance, your workout will suffer.


Try this pre-workout beauty and hygiene regimen that takes 10 minutes flat to get you freshened up and ready to sweat:

  • Wash your face: This will keep breakouts at bay. Sweating on top of a dirty face is more likely to clog your pores. Try Puff’s Fresh Faces face wipes! 
  • Brush out your hair: No blow dryer or curling iron needed. Just let your hair tell you what it wants, either a bun, a ponytail, or a braid. Always clip or pin back any loose pieces of hair to keep it off you face. One of our favorite headbands to use while working out is Owl Be Sweatin’. Not only are they adorable, but they stay in place!
  • Brush your teeth. Nothing is worse than sucking wind through a dirty mouth OR jogging on the treadmill next to someone who is sucking wind through a dirty mouth.
  • Apply deodorant– Really? Do we have to elaborate?
  • Apply concealer, powder and lip balm– These really just make you feel better and if you have to run an errand before or after, you’ll look more pulled together.

Click below for great fitness apparel that will make you feel even more put together.

fresh vegetables in a basket

Clean Eating 101: Change Your Body the Healthy Way

fresh vegetables in a basket

Diet-surfing is exhausting! There seems to be an endless number of books, articles and pins battling for our attention (and money). The no-carb, vegetarian, liquid-only, HCG and cabbage soup diets. The bottom line seems to be that fad diets may be able to give us temporary results, but leave us looking again and again for a better way to trim down our love handles and saddlebags.

Clean eating isn’t a fad diet. It’s a permanent, healthy way of eating that, with a little practice, can (and should) become a way of life. Clean eating is eating for the sake of nourishing your body with food as close to it’s natural state as possible. There is no math, no point systems, no insane calorie restrictions. When you begin to replace the processed, fried and unhealthy foods from your diet with whole grains, fruits, veggies and lean protein, your body will respond in amazing ways.

  1. Your muscles will respond to the added lean protein by growing which will speed up your metabolism.
  2. Your body will respond to the whole grains by regulating itself.
  3. Your body will also rid itself of water weight caused by excess sodium that is PACKED in processed food.

healthy grilled chicken kabobs

To make getting started on a clean eating path as simple as possible, we have created an acronym:

  • C: COUNT your meals. You should aim to eat 5-6 times a day (3 meals and 2-3 small snacks). Shoot for every couple of hours. This will keep your metabolism burning all day long!
  • L: LEAN protein! Each meal should contain about a palm-sized serving of lean protein (white-meat chicken/turkey, fish, black beans, egg whites, etc.) Find your favorites and keep them on hand.
  • E: EAT your fruits and veggies! They’re delicious, filling and packed with what our bodies need.
  • A: AVOID processed and refined foods. White flour, sugar, bread and pastas are no-nos. Replace them with complex carbs such as brown rice and whole wheat. Also, read ingredient lists. A long list means ‘not clean’. Read Food Labels Translated: 10 Alarming Ingredients to Avoid!
  • N: NEVER eat mindlessly. Too often, we tend to grab a food and toss it back without even a thought. The next time you go to eat something, ask yourself, “Will this do anything positive for my body?” and “Will I regret this choice later?”.

Check out 4 must-have ingredients for clean eating here!



Family Friendly Exercise

This week is my kids’ October Break week. That means 7 straight days without school to babysit my little monkeys. That means 7 straight days that my gym and running sessions may have to take a backseat to entertaining 4 little bodies. But that doesn’t mean that I am willing to let my body rest. Why should I? There is nothing that kids love more than running around and being active. It’s what kids’ bodies are made for!

Here are my top 5 ideas for what to do over the fall and winter breaks to keep yourself and your kiddos active and busy:

  1. Take a hike. While kids, depending on their ages, may not be able to go as long or as fast as you, they LOVE to climb. Just make sure to bring PLENTY of water and snacks and maybe even plan on doing a scavenger hunt of sorts. Print out a list of things, plants, rock shapes, animals, that they can check off when they find. That should keep them entertained and interested for the duration.
  2. Go to the zoo. Zoos are notorious for exhausting moms. With the endless walking up and down hills, there is huge potential for sore quads and hammies at the end of a long zoo afternoon! And, fall and winter weather make for a lovely, cool way to enjoy the outdoors. Again, just be prepared with lots of water and healthy food to ward off snack bar begging and empty wallets.
  3. Go for a ride. Bikes are a kid’s, and adult’s, best friend during long breaks from school. If you haven’t already, invest in a bike that you can take on leisurely rides with the family, or ride to run errands on a daily basis. Riding to the corner store will turn a boring quick trip into a calorie-burning outing.
  4. Go shopping. Yes! I said go shopping. Those old ladies in their tennies that do speed walking around the perimeter of the mall are on to something! In one shopping trip to the mall, you could get in TONS of walking and pushing a stroller or carrying kids can add a good extra “umph” to your calorie burn while getting you out of any wind, rain or snow that the colder months may bring in. Just keep up the pace and steer clear of the soft pretzels and pizza!
  5. Go to the park…a kid’s heaven. Playgrounds can be as much fun for an adult as they are for a kid if you use your imagination. While your kids play, run laps around the perimeter, do hangs or pull-ups on the monkey bars, do step-ups on the stairs, and do lunges through the sand. There are an ENDLESS number of exercise ideas that will kick your tail at a playground.

School breaks do not have to be a time-out for a mom. Grab your kids and enjoy the time together while teaching them the importance of being fit and healthy!


Top 10 Reasons to Ditch Sugar this Fall

Two years ago, I did it. I convinced myself that I could, and I managed to avoid even the tiniest piece of candy from my diet from October 1 through December 24…(it’s a long story). Not even a single candy corn! I’m not gonna lie…at first it was miserable. I had giant Gummy Bears stalking me in my dreams. But after detoxing for a week or so, I began to feel the other side of going sugarfree and it felt good, really good. The lesson to be learned from this story is that it’s possible. If you make the firm decision to do so, you can clean sugar, or at least candy, out of your diet. Here are my top 10 reasons that you should try giving up candy during the time of year that we devote to everything sugary:

  1. Sugar gives you cavities. Yes, teeth can still rot as adults.
  2. Sugar ruins your breath. Who wants that??
  3. Sugar makes you gain weight.
  4. Sugar bloats you.
  5. Eliminating sugar leaves you feeling lighter, more energetic, just all-around better.
  6. Eliminating sugar will force you to reach for healthier meal and snack choices.
  7. Stealing your kids’ candy while they’re at school is just wrong.
  8. Be a good, healthy, do-as-I-do example for your family.
  9. Healthy habits have to start somewhere. Start with sugar.
  10. Prove to yourself that you can do it!!

It’s been 2 years since my diet has been quite that clean. But today, I did it. I have convinced myself that it is possible to eliminate every piece of tempting, sugary sweetness from my diet…not even a taste! And I know I can do it because I’ve done it before. You can do it too and it’s worth the sacrifice and the temporary struggle because of how being sugarfree makes your mind and body feel. Join me, ladies. I’m going on Day 2!


Tips for Navigating the Gym

Woman at the gymPart of the reason that small, independent personal trainers, like myself, are popular with women is that many women tend to feel uncomfortable in big, commercial gyms. Some feel insecure about people watching them workout. Some feel intimidated by all of the equipment that they don’t know how to use, and some feel like big gyms are big germ-fests. For whatever reason, some people are just turned off by the whole gym experience. While that can be good for me, I hate to see women uncomfortable working out anywhere. Plus, hitting the gym between training or cardio sessions can show huge gains in both weight-loss, muscle growth, and overall fitness. Here are my top tips to help you feel comfortable in your local gym:

  1. Bring a bag. – A gym bag should contain everything that you need to have a successful, enjoyable gym experience. My gym bag contains lip balm, weight lifting gloves, a water bottle, facial wipes, a fitness magazine, a towel and a travel-sized deodorant. And that bag never leaves the back of my car so I never have the opportunity to skip a gym session because I don’t have “my stuff”. Need a new gym bag? Check out Urbandillo’s Hobo Gym Bag, it is fabulous!
  2. Have a plan. – Always prepare for the gym by either clipping a workout from a magazine or a website (like this great one) or planning and writing out your own. A good rule of thumb is to either hit 2-3 body parts in a day, or do a circuit for a full-body workout. There is no need to be in the gym for over an hour. Just pre-plan so that your workout is efficient.
  3. Get to know the gym. – Don’t be afraid to ask for assistance from gym staff or “regulars” to teach you how to use equipment or show you where everything is. Feeling confident in the gym environment will make a HUGE difference in your workouts. I’ve have friends who’ve just walked up to someone who does workouts that they like or the body that they are after, and asked for their help and advice. Don’t be shy. They would LOVE the compliment!
  4. Use the mirrors. – The best way to check your form and to keep your head and shoulders where they need to be when you’re weight lifting, is to stare at yourself in the mirror. Trust me, you will not look vain. People will know that you know what you’re doing when they see you watching your form and movement in the mirror. When you see your muscles move and contract, you will feel how an exercise should be performed and therefore be more effective.

Going to the gym should be fun, not dreaded. So, do your homework, be brave, and get out there.

(photo credit here)


Explore the World Around You

It was around 7PM that I began my run through the White River National Forest in Vail, Colorado. Starting off from my relay exchange point, surrounded by endless miles of  Aspen and Pine trees, I inhaled deeply. That first breath was in part because I was absolutely terrified that I wouldn’t be able to breath at this altitude, and partly because I had promised myself that I would really allow myself to enjoy this race. This would, more than likely, be the only time that I would ever find myself running in a place that John Denver wrote so many songs about.

It was along that first of my 3 relay legs, that a fellow runner graciously stopped to take this picture of me. I have run in some truly amazing places over the years; barefoot on the beach in Mexico, part way around the island of Kauai, at the base of the red Sedona mountains, on the boardwalk along South Beach in Miami and, most recently…Hyde Park in London. There have been moments along those routes that I have wanted so badly to remember every detail of my surroundings but I become so entranced in the run that stopping to take a picture is the last thing on my mind. So…thank you, my good Samaritan Colorado Ragnarian:)

What I have come to learn about these runs is how much I would miss if I didn’t do them. There is a whole, enormous, awe-inspiring world out there that not a single one of us has been even close to covering. If I were to have missed that run in Miami, I would never have seen the sun rise over the ocean, (weird for a western girl). If I had traded my Hyde Park run for a ‘continental breakfast’, I would have never known about that amazing garden pool tucked deep within the park. Running has become as much a part of my vacations as everything else on the site-seeing agendas, because vacationing, for me, is about exploring, and…traveling to a place is exciting, but exploring that place can change you.


Carry-On Essentials: Make Flying Enjoyable

Why does traveling do this to me? Am I the only one who feels like they can’t stop to take a breath until I’m sitting, seat-belted into my airplane seat…taxiing off the runway? At least, this time, I have taken the time to plan out all of the things that I will need on my long, long trip across the pond to make my journey as tranquil and enjoyable as possible. Hopefully, this list of my ‘flying must-haves’ will help you on your next flight;

  1. An over-the-shoulder bag– Airlines allow you one carry-on and one purse. Make the most of your purse by bringing a tote that easily carries everything that will keep you happy and comfortable on the flight. This Big Buddha tote is the perfect shape and size for travel.
  2. A good read– If, by chance, your flight has a movie, who knows what it will be. Bring a magazine or two and a great new read to keep you entertained during your journey. Gone Girl is #5 on the NYTimes Bestsellers List, right now. It’s already packed in my Big Buddha and calling to me:)
  3. TSA-approved travel containers– I LOVE these little, squeezable travel containers! Gotoobs have a twistable label of the tube’s contents and the 2 ounce size has a handy suction cup, allowing it to attach to your hotel mirror or shower wall.
  4. Facial spray– It is not your imagination. The air inside a plane must be dry to protect the metal fuselage from the dangers of corrosion. This, almost complete, absence of humidity can lead to your skin feeling uncomfortably dry and itchy. Fight the dryness with a facial spray like this one. From the first time I tried Mario Badescu’s aloe, herbs and rosewater facial spray, I was hooked. I will never travel without it.
  5. Lip balm– Lips are especially susceptible to the dry conditions as well. For those of you who follow my blog posts, you know what’s coming. I do not, I repeat…do not, leave the house without an EOS lip balm.
  6. Neck pillow– In 2 days, I am traveling from Phoenix to London where I will have lost 8 hours. That means I will be losing a whole night’s sleep. You can bet that I will do just about anything to get comfortable enough to fall asleep for the flight. My neck pillows are from Target but a girl can dream, right. Can you just imagine the comfort of this massaging neck wrap from Brookestone. Ahhh…
  7. Anti-bacterial wipes– According to a study done by the National Research Council’s Transportation Research Board, in 2010, cold and flu viruses can live for hours on airplane surfaces such as lavatory doorknobs and latches on overhead bins. A pack of antibacterial wipes will eliminate the fear of developing an illness that could ruin your vacation.
  8. Snacks– If you’re like me, airline snacks don’t dot it for you. Pretzels and dry-roasted peanuts are not exactly clean and healthy and leave you feeling less than satisfied. Pack along a couple of ziploc baggies of carrots, air-popped popcorn or apple slices. You’ll be glad that you did:)




Scottsdale Fashion Square’s Back to School Event


If there’s any AZ mamas out there that still need to do some back to school shopping for your littles, this one’s for you!

This Saturday, August 25, Scottsdale Fashion Square is hosting a back-to school event from 12-2PM. Make a day of grabbing salad and pizza across the street at Sauce or chicken and hummus from Pita Jungle in the Food Court, and then head to the Back-to-School Fashion Show in the Barneys New York wing of the mall. The fashion show will showcase trendy kid and teen fashions and offer specials from a number of different participating stores. The Road Crew from Radio Disney will be there, so bring your kids because they’ll be announcing how to win a pair of tickets for the Justin Bieber concert in the Radio Disney AM 1580 Suite.
*Paticipating retailers include: 2BU Aveda Salon, Aeropostale, Caketini, Charming Charlie, Doc Popcorn, Francesca’s Collections, G-Star Raw, Gap, Haagen Dazs, Peek…, Pita Jungle, Regis Salon, Sephora and Splendid.

Some of the offers that are only good on that day are…

  • G-Star Raw – 20% off any 1 pull price item of your choice. *Offer valid August 10-25.
  • Splash Designs – 25% off your entire purchase. *August 25 only.

Trust me, your kids will thank you for this! Maybe you could even get them to clean their rooms, afterward;) And if you take them by Caketini, upstairs, for a cakepop, I bet they’d even clean the garage!

*photo credit,; featured image photo credit,