Featured Member, Melissa Bauknight, Golden, Colorado


This month’s featured Ranada Fitness member is Melissa Bauknight -  wife, mother, medical sales rep, director, friend, leader and adventurer who lives in Golden, Colorado.  Whew!  She’s impressive.

I wanted to feature Melissa because she is the quintessential self-leader and beautifully demonstrates how to practice self-leadership in our everyday lives. 

Read on to learn more about Melissa and all the wisdom she shared with me in our recent interview!

Tell me about yourself:  I believe in creating a life that lights me up and that happiness is truly a choice.  I am addicted to learning ways to constantly improve myself and believe that everyone has a gift inside of them that makes a difference in the world.  I wear many hats: I am a wife, a mother of a 17 month old son, a medical sales rep, a Beautycounter director, a friend, a leader & an adventurer.  I strive to live a healthy, active lifestyle and love creating...

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Simple Delicious Latte

This is the best healthy delicious latte recipe ever!  
This creamy vegan latte is made with only 3 ingredients, naturally sweetened and dairy-free.  
If you want a healthier way to get an easy afternoon pick me up, this simple and affordable healthy latte recipe is definitely a must try!

Prep time:  5 minutes


  • 1 cup hot brewed coffee
  • 1 tsp. coconut butter
  • 1  medjool date, pitted 


  • Combine the coffee, coconut butter, and date in a blender and blend until creamy.
  • Pour in your favorite coffee cup or to go mug.
  • Enjoy!  


  • If you are using a high speed blender, you can pour this mixture directly into your cup and serve right away.  If you have a standard blender, you may want to pour the mixture through a fine mesh sieve to strain out any random pieces of date that the blender missed.  
  •  I like my latte extra hot!  If you do too...you can microwave or heat your coffee over the stove...
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Beginner’s Guide to Sleep Better: 7 Simple Steps to Get You Started


Do you have trouble falling asleep or staying asleep? Do you get enough sleep? For that matter, do you know anyone who gets enough sleep?

Sleep is one of the keys to living a healthy, strong and balanced life. There are lots of technical explanations for how you sleep, why you sleep, how much to sleep, what happens if you don’t get enough sleep (24 hours without sleep will affect you similarly to a blood-alcohol level of .10% – in all fifty states you’ll be the equivalent of legally drunk), and whether you can repay a sleep deficit (hint: you can’t). The bottom line is that, without even having to consult the stacks of articles and studies and experiments that seek to explain it, you just know that you feel better when you get enough sleep. For not well understood reasons, sleep helps you repair at night.

But none of this will be on the final exam. All you need to know is that you need 7 to 8 hours of sleep a night, every night of the week. I’m...

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Self-Care 101: 7 Simple Steps to Get You Started

SELF-CARE 101:  7 Simple Steps to Get You Started

What is it that flight attendants say about oxygen masks: If you’re traveling with someone who needs assistance put your own mask on first and then help others. You probably know the logic behind this counterintuitive instruction – if you don’t help yourself, then you can't help anyone else.

The idea of helping yourself – Self-Care – includes anything that rebalances, recharges, refuels or nurtures your body, mind or spirit. Self-care might seem like an option, an elective or something you can tend to when you’ve cleared your calendar. But the truth is, if you don’t take care of yourself you won’t be able to manage any of your obligations.

Here are some simple steps to get you started.

Step 1: Learn

Take time to educate yourself about self-care, since the more you know about it the more likely you are to pursue it. When you make self-care a priority – when you show...

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7 Benefits of Meditation

7 Benefits of Meditation

You’re stressed. You’re tired. You’re anxious and sleepless because everything you wanted to say but didn’t think of in time, and everything you wanted to do but didn’t get done, is swirling around your brain and you can’t make it stop. The more you can’t sleep, the more anxious you get, and the more anxious you get, the more you can’t sleep. What to do? How to free yourself from this grind?

Have you lost count of how many times you’ve been urged to take up meditation? Maybe now's the time to accept the challenge.

Meditation can:

  • Reduce stress

You’re stressed? No wonder: take care of the kids, take care of the pets, the spouse, the home, the job, the hurdles that pop up like the weeds in the garden, which also have to be tended to. And let’s not even mention the Broncos, the Lakers, the Rangers, the Sox (White and Red), the Mets or the Jets. While you’re meditating for ten to twenty...

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10 Building Blocks of Pilates | A Path to Strength and Flexibility

10 Building Blocks of Pilates:  A Path to Strength and Flexibility

My neck aches. My back aches.  My knees hurt me all the time. I don’t want to live with this pain anymore! I need to build some flexibility and strength. Help! What can I do?

Does this sound like you?  Well, you’re not alone -- many clients and patients come to me for these exact same reasons.  A lot of them have coped with similar issues for years. I’m here to tell you that you don’t have to put up with these aches and pains anymore.

The answer?  Pilates!  Pilates has helped me, and my clients and patients, tremendously.  Pilates was created in the early 1900s by Joseph Pilates, who'd been a sickly child growing up in Germany. Determined to overcome his weakness, he designed a fitness program to help build core strength. He also invented spring-resistance machines that could be used to perform the exercises. Pilates exercises build muscular strength, in...

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Barre Workout | Is Barre for You?

Barre Workout:  Is Barre for You?

Ever thought about taking a barre class?  Or even wondered, what is barre? If so, read on. 

I fell in love with barre a few years ago, but not while participating in group barre classes. I truly fell in love with barre during Balanced Body Barre ® instructor training.  Group barre classes were fun, but as I looked around the room I noticed a lot of people whose form wasn't quite right.  I decided to train as a barre instructor to help people feel better, feel stronger, and exercise safely.  

What is Barre?

Barre is a full-body workout using a combination of movements inspired by ballet and other disciplines like Pilates and yoga.  Barre workouts incorporate the use of a ballet barre for balance and to perform certain exercises, but if you're working out at home you can use a chair instead of a ballet barre.  Other props may include light weights and resistance bands for strength conditioning or mini...

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7 + Ways to Incorporate Exercise Into Your Daily Routine

7 + Ways to Incorporate Exercise into Your Daily Routine

Have you ever felt like there’s simply never enough time in the day? Or that you need to put others first before yourself? Or that you are just too tired to exercise?

Well, you’re not alone.

Unfortunately, many of us feel like we are constantly burning the candle at both ends. We feel like we never have the time to put ourselves first, especially when it comes to making exercise part of our daily routine. Years ago, when I was a nurse, I used to think this way all the time. I loved to take care of others so much, but I didn’t leave any time to take care of myself, let alone allow time to exercise. It took me a long time to realize that I needed to devote time to taking care of myself and my body, and that in order to do that, I had to change my daily routine.

It wasn’t easy, but I’m here to tell you that it’s worth it, and you can do it, too. You can make time for yourself and incorporate...

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7 Reasons To Try Pilates

7 Reasons To Try Pilates

I was first introduced to Pilates back in 2000, when I took my first private Pilates session to see what it was all about. That first experience was okay, but just okay. To be honest, I didn’t feel like I got anything out of it. Because of this experience, I knew how important and vital it is for people to make sure they find a good instructor who gives clear and precise cues, especially for those who are just starting a Pilates practice. 

Nine years later, I rediscovered Pilates after accidentally falling and injuring my ribs. My injury, coupled with the stress of worrying about how I was going to help take care of my parents who lived out of state and happened to be ill at the same time, meant that it was a very trying period of my life. In fact, my stress began to manifest itself in physical symptoms. As a result, I felt vulnerable, de-conditioned, and had constant upper back pain from the fall. It literally felt like a knife was lodged between...

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