I have had so many discussions with people about fitness and weight loss, and the most common thing I hear is, " I have failed so many times before, I'm just not ready to try again." Some have had momentary success and ended right back where they started and others barely made it out of the gate but they are overwhelmed, discouraged, and hopeless. My heart breaks for them! They look around at other people who seem to have it all together and they feel inferior. They hide when cameras come out, and crop photos of themselves so as not to be reminded of their failure. They feel dressed in their shame. When I get into these discussions, my sole purpose is to bring hope because regardless of what the track record has been, the goal is to fail forward. What does that mean? It means that you now know what didn't work for you and you pick yourself up and make a new plan. For some, that may mean changing the exercise program or the diet that they were following but in most cases in comes down to accountability.
I have worked out as long as I can remember. My mom worked out and so it was just part of our lifestyle. We also grew up on the beach so we surfed, skateboarded, and went for crazy long walks in the evenings. Exercise was abundant! My mom made healthy food but we still had things like cookies or chips lying around the house too, so ultimately our diet, as it should be, ended up being our own responsibility. Being part of the same family does not guarantee the same metabolism or even the same attraction to healthy food. My sister loves healthy food but she also loves donuts and chips. She worked out but she ate what she wanted. In high school, she was a couple sizes larger than me but not heavy by any standard. She told me later on that people actually said horrible things to her like, " Wow, it sucks for you to be the fat sister." (She was wise to keep it to herself though, I might have been arrested for assault otherwise!) Ashley had an active lifestyle so she maintained a decent weight, but because of her eating habits, she never got truly fit.
She married young and got pregnant right away and that's really where her trouble began. She gained 60 lbs her first pregnancy and before she had time to lose all the weight she was pregnant again. She said her wake up call was 4 months after the birth of her second baby, she got on the scale and she had gained 6 pounds since her 6 week check up. She said, " I felt like I was in someone else's body. I realized I had to get my support system back and get moving!"
I would like to introduce my sister, Ashley! Before picture she weighed in at 184, after picture she weighed in at 125.
First, I want to start out by saying that this amazing transformation was ALL her. I was part of her support group and I encouraged her but I am not at all taking credit for what she accomplished. This girl was a powerhouse of determination! She joined fitness clubs online, researched the best workouts for a mom of toddlers, made meal plans on her own, and not only did she create a life of accountability for herself, she invited others to join her. She was ( unofficially) coaching long before the rest of us and it was not an easy path! She had people discouraging her, telling her she was being unhealthy, and at times people purposely tried to sabotage her diet by tempting her with things she loved to eat! I watched that girl throw away food so she wouldn't be tempted! I know very few people that can thrive under that much negativity. She's amazing! She was reamed out on social media for posting about her workouts to the point that she deleted her status' and refrained from talking about her journey online. She jumped over every hurdle, and dodged every obstacle and refused to be discouraged. And yes, she did it herself but she succeeded because she had accountability. She had constructed a plan so when she was in tears over a mean spirited comment she could be encouraged by a true friend. She asked people to follow up with her and hold her to the standard that she had set. She offered to help others and she let that be motivation to succeed herself. I remember distinctly walking around her neighborhood one night ( We still love long walks!) and she said, " I finally get it! I finally feel in control and it's addicting! I want to eat healthy, I want to feel this good! I'm not making myself doing it anymore. I want to do it!"
Just like peddling your bike up a hill, there is that moment you reach at the top where you get to coast down the other side! Does that mean someone who hates working out suddenly loves it? No. Does that mean someone that is addicted to sugar isn't tempted anymore? No. What changes is that you have grasped the vision, and tasted the success, and you have cemented good habits in place of your bad habits and the temptations are no longer stronger than your vision.
Her story is a large part of why I decided to become a Beachbody coach. Not only did she have to fight the battle inside her own mind to control her own cravings and force herself to workout in the beginning but she had to fight against the world outside as well. It is not easy to keep the course in the midst of all that struggle and discouragement. This is why I am such a believer in challenge groups! So often, the motivation that we need to continue comes from being surrounded by like minded people that are pursuing similar goals. People that understand the self doubt and the temptation to cave. People that stand beside you and see the beauty of the vision you have for your life and remind you when you lose sight of that vision. The voices encouraging you need to be louder than those that are discouraging you! Even one negative opinion can make you doubt EVERYTHING. You have to have people you turn to that will remind you of the truth when those moments come because they WILL come. How does the quote go? " If you fail to plan, then you plan to fail." It's not all meal plans and work out schedules, you have to plan for the emotional set backs too.
We need each other! Part of why I love coaching is that it gives ME that extra motivation to get my workouts in and to eat healthy. I am way more aware when the red bull is calling my name from the check out line in Target that others are watching me. It's easier to make wise choices knowing that it helps other people make wise choices.
If you are feeling discouraged, if you have desperately tried to get control over your nutrition and still feel lost, there really is hope! The program that I recommend is the 21 Day Fix. It's 30 minute simple and effective workouts paired with an easy to follow nutrition plan that comes with a color coded container system for a no-brainer approach to healthy eating. It teaches you portion control as you go through the program. No calorie counting, no points! It also leaves room for coffee, tea, wine, and chocolate as well as other approved treats. No depriving yourself here!
It takes 21 days to break a bad habit and 21 days to build a good one and that's the premise of the 21 Day Fix. The challenge pack sale for the 21 Day Fix has been extended for the month of July which makes it the lowest price of the year and it also comes with a 30 day money back guarantee. You can complete the entire program and pay nothing if it doesn't work for you! The challenge group is a complimentary service for those that buy a challenge pack to help you succeed.
You can check out the details for the 21 Day Fix here or email me for more information at firstname.lastname@example.org ---> Check it out! :)
Come as you are! Learn with us, struggle with us, and conquer with us! I have a new challenge group starting every month (next one is July 13th) with other women that are either right where you are or have been there themselves. Fail forward, my friends! Success awaits you!
For all of you out there that hate to cook as much as I do, I am going to try and post my easy go-to's weekly to help encourage you on your path to healthy eating and meal planning! Here is one of my family's favorite from Cooking Light Magazine July 2011
You will need:
1 Tbsp olive oil
1 Tbsp minced Shallots
1 garlic clove, minced
1 cup balsamic vinegar
1.5 tsp of coconut sugar
1 tsp chopped fresh rosemary
1 tsp Dijon mustard
1 ( 1 pound) pork tenderloin cut into 12 slices
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp ground black pepper
1. Heat oil in a small saucepan over medium high heat. Add shallots and garlic; saute 2 minutes. Add vinegar,sugar, rosemary, and mustard; cook until reduced to half a cup.
2.Heat a large skillet over medium-high heat. Coat pan with cooking spray. Sprinkle pork with salt and pepper. Place pork in pan; cook two minutes on each side. Add balsamic reduction; cook 1 minute, turning pork to coat. Yield 4 servings ( serving size: 3 pork medallions and two tablespoons of reduction= 1 red container)
For the Grilled Peaches:
Heat a grill pan( i use a cast iron skillet) over medium high heat. Coat pan with cooking spray. Add 4 peach halves to pan;cook two minutes on each side. Cut each half into three wedges. Yield: 4 servings ( serving size half a cup or half a purple container)
Serve with a yellow container of brown or wild rice.
As a single woman and as a young married woman, I was very comfortable in my roles. I had figured out early on what I wanted to do with my life, I worked hard in pursuit of those dreams, and doors opened. I flourished in the workplace and I loved the finite nature of it all. The 9-5 hours, my tasks, understanding what I could do to go beyond my job requirements and be noticed. It all made sense. It was a pattern at which I excelled.
Oh, but motherhood isn't that way at ALL! No one really ever tells you about all the inner guilt, the way you constantly compare yourself and your child's milestones to everyone else's to try and achieve that same sense of security. How many times a day do you ask yourself, " Am I good mom?". And then, usually in the midst of sheer exhaustion, you scroll through facebook or pinterest ( name your poison) and see that good moms throw lavish and creative birthday parties for their one year old, and good moms hand make their own baby food out of organic fruits and vegetables, and good moms NEVER let their children watch television. They are on top of potty training by 18 months old, learning to read by age 3, or have them in ballet, soccer, and gymnastics. All of this is overwhelming as it is, but then you add in all the contradictions! Good moms don't prevent pregnancy, good moms plan their pregnancies, good moms vaccinate, good moms don't vaccinate, good moms homeschool, good moms send their kids to school, good moms work outside the home, good moms stay at home with their children! And so on and so on! It never ends. From what I can tell from speaking with lovely women that have gone before me, it's always been this way to an extent but social media has turned up the volume. This is good and bad.
Good because if your skill set doesn't include lavish birthday parties you have them all mapped out for you on pinterest to provide something special for your child. It can be a gift. The problem is that the technology that made things more efficient just managed to make us feel that we needed to fit more into the same amount of time and this has translated similarly into our lives. Because we have access to so much information, we feel this pressure to do every thing well and with flair! However, how many of your attempts have turned into pinterest fails leaving you feeling inferior?
That lie is what takes root within us and causes self doubt and insecurities to start running rampant. Either we seek to assert our superiority to drive out inferior feelings or we turn into a ball of self loathing and see nothing worthy in ourselves at all. I want to challenge this inferiority complex.
First, we can't compare ourselves to one another, even if someone is similar to you in personality, circumstance, or season of life. We are created unique for a purpose and trying to define yourself by another person or even a group of people's opinion is only going to lead you farther from where you need to be. We often don't see the God given talents and abilities we possess as being as impressive as other peoples talents but if you spent as much time cultivating our own as we do wishing we had others, we would be able to make ours shine.
In Matthew 25:14-30 We are told the parable of the talents and though the talent they speak of was monetary, I believe it applies here as well. We are given a gift and we need to make the most of it to honor the One who gave it to us! Dr Henry Cloud in his book "Changes that Heal" says,"
"Another important aspect of our identity is our talents and abilities. God has given each of us certain talents and abilities and He holds us responsible for developing them. Many times, people do not explore their own talents They accept other's definitions of them, without seeing if these definitions fit. Sometimes they will deny their own gifts and live vicariously through others,"
When we look at someone posting an amazing skill on social media we need to view it as a manifestation of innate ability matched with human effort. The talent is beautiful but it was the hard work that went into mastering their talent that makes it truly amazing! You were not looked over when it comes to talents and abilities. Perhaps you don't know what they are or you don't see them clearly because they are mundane to you. What comes naturally to you will most often seem less exciting than something that doesn't. The envy that we feel is misplaced. We feel envious not because some one has a greater talent but that they have found their calling. We long to feel fulfilled with purpose and to have meaning in our life, but trying to live vicariously or imitating someone else will never bring us to that place. We have to seek out our interests and desires and be willing to explore new things. How sad would it be if Monet had never picked up a paintbrush or Shakespeare had never written a word. You have gifts every bit as lovely to offer the world. Be willing to find them!
I was never one of those that had a certain talent but I loved to learn. I am always willing to try a new job, an odd class, or obscure hobby just to see! And through the course of time I have learned things about myself.
1. I am a jack of all trades! Good at many things but great at none. I used to consider this a weakness but I now consider it a strength because once I get passionate about something being "good" at it is often enough. There are many people that have incredible ability that I surpass because they lack the determination to excel. Much success can be achieved simply through hard work and dedication.
2. Through the process of learning what I was "good" at, I narrowed down the things that inspire me to work and called out to me to pursue. Just because you are good at something doesn't mean you are passionate about it. I absolutely love photography! I loved every single second going to school for it and I still love it to this day. However, I tried to start a business doing it and though I was reasonably successful, I found it very stressful. It wasn't something that spoke to my soul the way I thought it would. I was surprised when I realized I didn't want to do it anymore. Doing it as a profession stole the joy out of it for me and I learned that though it will always be a part of my life, I don't want to pursue it as a job.
I was a buyer for many years as well and it was my dream job at the time. I never thought I would leave but then I had a baby and I couldn't imagine leaving her to work 60 + hours a week and travel a month out of the year. My priorities changed. Now the thought of returning to the rat race of being a buyer when I am in my 50's doesn't appeal to me at all and God has opened up a new door pursuing my love of fitness and helping others while being able to stay home with my girls. Each season of my life has been filled with a beautiful rainbow of talents and opportunities and so if you are looking through your arsenal of skills and nothing stands out among them, don't be discouraged! Look through them and pick something that appeals to you, or even learn a new skill that you have always wanted to try. Don't be afraid to fail at something! Failure isn't the end unless you make it the end. If you are still passionate about something after a failed attempt, try again! If your passion as waned, try something else! Life is too short not to explore and enjoy the different facets of your personality. Get to know yourself!
Something else I have come to realize is that so often we are told to look at our weaknesses and improve on them. I don't disagree that we all need to grow over time but I think before we focus on our weaknesses, we need to maximize our strengths. For example, I am a very disorganized person and when I was pursuing photography in school I was forced to become more organized. I had to organize and archivally keep my negatives and process other peoples film at times. I had to grow in my weaker areas to improve upon my greater ones and the process was much more pleasant because I was doing it out of a desire to grow my skill not because I was being forced to look at my flaws. If I had to master all that boring organizational stuff before I could dive in the part I was passionate about, I probably never would have pursued it. So, you may need to change your mentality if you have grown up in an environment that was harping on overcoming your flaws. Seriously, you grow almost organically in your weak areas as you fully pursue your strengths and there are some things you are just NEVER going to be good at so laugh at it, delight in amazement at someone who can do those things, and set your heart free to find what it loves!
If you can get to that place where you can appreciate another woman's skill without envy, you will find that you can joyfully learn from her. I have an amazing friend named Ashley who's mind is an uncluttered and beautiful place which translates into a beautiful, clean, and organized home. It's a wonder to behold! Every time I go to her house, I learn something. She keeps her sponges in the dishwasher when she is not using them, or how she efficiently organizes her pantry, or how the dining room table is not an acceptable place to store things ( who knew?) She has been in my life a couple of years now and I tease her that I now have an inner Ashley that speaks up when I'm being disorganized. Has it changed my scattered mind? Heck no! I still struggle but I do keep my sponges in the dishwasher and clean out my fridge more often. I see how her gift honors God and honors her family and I desire to grow in that but I also have gifts that require me to be flexible and not sweat the small stuff and so as I let her example inspire me, I let it take form in my own way.
I looked up the meaning of the word "Supermom" and apparently it means:
: an exemplary mother; also : a woman who performs the traditional duties of housekeeping and child-rearing while also having a full-time job
I want to redefine it. It doesn't matter if you are a working mom or a stay at home mom. A supermom in my dictionary is a mom that does all the mundane work of a mom and still pursues her passions and skills letting her children see the light of purpose in her eyes. A woman that teaches her sons to respect and honor a passionate hard working woman and who teaches her daughters to dig deep and see the kaleidoscope of beauty that resides inside herself so bright that it lights up the world around her.
We tell our daughters that true beauty lies within but we need to SHOW them! They will see us insecure and burying our talents and they will follow our example. Our deepest beauty is not what the world can see on the outside, ladies, it's that kaleidoscope we see so clearly in our daughters. You ARE a supermom! Discover your super powers! Find your passions, enjoy mastering them, and delight in your life!
"And Aubrey was her name. A not so very ordinary girl or name."(Or so says David Gates ;) I'm a wife to Phillip, a mother to Scarlett and Juliet. We live in the beautiful city of Thornton, Co. I'm a recovering red bull addict. I love to read. I hate to cook. I seek to be inspired and also to inspire others. I am a Beachbody Coach on a quest to be truly healthy mind, soul, and body and challenge others to do the same.