New Me.

 Photos by  Warren Craig

Photos by Warren Craig

January! Wow! Fresh year, New Goals.

Without a doubt; the perfect scenario for promising to take better care of yourself! We do this every year, am I right. We buy a gym membership, we try that diet that Sally’s sister's cousin lost 45 pounds in 5 days with. We are excited, focused...and hungry....ha! In all seriousness, why do we try and become a different person overnight? We expect to wake up on January 1st and apply all these changes (at once) and expect results- in a minimal amount of time. It’s quite overwhelming. A lot of self-applied pressure. There are so many factors that contribute to our health. The #1 favorite being fat loss, aesthetics seem to be the main reason we try and get healthy...we wanna look good! Of course losing fat, gaining lean muscle and dropping pounds can improve many internal functions, joint movement, ailments and so much more!!!


What about sleep? How many hours are you sleeping at night?

Are you getting quality sleep? How are your stress levels? Do you have a stressful job? How do you manage it? Do you stay hydrated? How much WATER do you drink a day? Do you smoke? What is your weekly alcohol intake? What are your eating habits? Do you go the entire day without eating? Are you including fruits and vegetables on the daily? Do you have a support system? Are you surrounding yourself with negativity? Or positivity? Does your circle of friends consist of people with like-minds and similar goals?

crissy-joe.jpg


So yes...many, many factors that contribute to your health, or lack of health.

Take an hour, today. Sit somewhere quietly and alone. Grab a pen and paper. Actually, write out your health goals for 2018. Now, how are you going to do all this overnight? YOU’RE NOT. You’re then going to prioritize them. Then- you start implementing the habit/change, once you feel you have mastered that change and it’s second nature, you then add in the second change/habit and so forth. A new you will involve changes to your everyday routine- don’t try and rush that. Habits are hard to break.

You really really really have to cleanse your surroundings to help you work towards your goals.

Get rid of whatever or whomever is holding you back. Take control over your life. Do not associate taking the initiative to a healthier mind and body with selfishness, not a negative type of selfishness, a type of selfishness that in turn makes you an even better individual, because you feel better, you have more energy, and you have positivity all around you. All by choice. All in the way you LIVE. Effortlessly.

Macro Master

IIFYM, Flexible Dieting, Pop Tart Diet…There are several names for my choice of “diet” (I honestly can’t remember the last time I had a pop tart…I am sure I was a child…and it was probably the generic brand).

I have always been very active, therefore not 'having' to pay super close attention to detail regarding nutrition. Then I started seeing women with abs (Gwen Stefani), my trainer and his wife competing in Body Building Shows, a Fitness instructor at the gym was doing 35lb shoulder presses…and I decided I wanted to actually CHANGE my body. So; I decided to compete. Originally a short term goal, now a huge part of my life- and man have I learned so much along the way. 

DIEting

I have trained for shows in several ways.

Low Carb:

Where I legit ate McDonalds Chicken Nuggets often - 4g Carbs in a 4 pack, FYI. Cuz who cares if I was eating nutritiously as long as my carbs were low, right?

Bro Diet:

I have done flank steak for breakfast, chicken breast, asparagus at all 6 meals, counted out 6 blueberries... (I STILL can’t cook my own asparagus without gagging) Regardless, all the years of competing I unintentionally yo-yo’d. I would eat “clean” for 16 weeks, (NO Peanut butter for 16 weeks…what???) Then go back to whatever I was eating before. It can really become an unhealthy cycle. Soon after hiring a coach; that had me eating asparagus 6x a day; as I was choking down flank steak at 7am-I heard about IIFYM (IF IT FITS YOUR MACROS) and became very intrigued. I started reading & listening to videos. I paid an online service for my macros and have never looked back. 

What are MACROS anyway? 

Short for macronutrients- The building blocks of nutrition. Carbs. Fats. Protein. Understanding macros can honestly lay solid groundwork for a balanced, user friendly, nutrition plan.  

CARBS: Provides fuel! Energy for your brain and body. Veggies, Fruit, Grains, Legumes, Milk, Yogurt

PROTEIN: Build and repair your muscles, organs, skin, blood, and hormones! Fish, Poultry, Eggs, Nuts, Seeds, Tofu, Dairy

FATS: Insulates and Protects bones and organs, acts as back up fuel for energy and helps brain development. Avocados, Nuts, Seeds, Fish, Olive Oil, Coconut Oil.

Can we agree that all 3 of these are important to survive? 

How we do

I give you specific macro “goals”. These goals vary per person as there are many factors I take into consideration. Things like your age, your goals, how many workouts you do a week; etc. 

I tell my clients to look at these goals as a puzzle. You control the foods that “fit” the puzzle. This means, technically, NO FOODS are “off limits” as long as they “fit” in your daily allowance. Food is no longer labeled as “good” or “bad” (Obviously some foods contain vitamins and minerals so YES some foods are potentially a better choice-but * INSERT FOOD FREEDOM*  here).

You are IN CONTROL.  

I am not gonna lie, it takes some practice to become an expert as all foods have different macros, you might accidently go over on carbs today, be short on protein tomorrow; etc. But you soon figure out which foods you eat the most of, which ones you could “fit in” when you’re only left with Carbs and Protein at the end of the day. It’s a learning process, but 100% worth the time invested. Most “diets” tell you what you CAN or CAN’T have. That is why we can’t stick to it. We feel deprived or get sick of certain foods. 

Piece of CAKE

If you want to stop dieting, if you want a lifestyle, I strongly suggest trying IIFYM. Have your cake; sometimes; and eat it to! When I compete I still follow IIFYM. My goals get tighter but the way I eat does not change and hasn’t for years. 

There is a reason we are still trying to lose the same 10lbs. We have to get off the diet cycle. Use food to our benefit. We need to have a healthy relationship with food.

We need to learn how to live with food, not live without it. 

 

MuscleMoms

What else would my first blog topic be about? Bahaha.

I honestly have been a “gym rat” for as long as I can remember BUT definitely had my streak of skipping the gym... (that’s completely NORMAL, by the way).

But then, at 29, I gave c-section birth to twins...

During pregnancy I was put on "bed rest with bathroom privileges only.”  So; no cooking, cleaning, or working out... wait! That’s our dream now right?? lol.

I was pretty shocked with how much muscle I lost in 4 short months of inactivity. Needless to say, when I got my 6-week “all clear” I could not wait to get back to it. I remember popping in a P90X Ab DVD…and being super unsuccessful thinking my body would do whatever it was doing pre-pregnancy. 

Humble Pie.

Anyhow. I kept pushing, MADE time to hit the gym and didn’t give up, and thankfully my body seemed to remember what I had trained it for all those years before. 

Strength and Confidence. 

Feeling strong will give you a new level of confidence. Something about knowing you can lift that box or move that couch on your own is pretty empowering. Owning a gym of mainly women…mainly moms…I often see Moms NOT taking enough time for themselves. Or sticking to the treadmill or elliptical because they are intimidated by the free weight section, or they think one lift session will have them looking more manly.

Y'all… it does not happen that easily, that fast, or even happen without some…achemmm…testosterone help. Let’s be honest.

Start with those 5 and 10 pounders, ladies…but don’t be afraid to go heavier. There are some extremely awesome benefits to lifting heavy... other than feeling like a bad a$$. 

Hot and Heavy. 

Can you say MURVES?  Curves created by muscles, or what most women describe to me as “Toned”.

Forget the scale number.; lift heavier and watch your clothing size and inches DROP. 

Burn more calories all day long. Yes! 

The more muscle mass you have, the more calories you burn-even at rest. It’s like extra credit! 

Prepare for a larger appetite. Yes! You can eat more and your body will LOVE you for it!

Fuel your body. 

Stronger Bones! Weight training also improves your bone density. #fightosteoporosis  

Lifting WILL change your body composition for the stronger and sexier. Pinky Promise.

If you are new to the strength training aspect, don’t be afraid to ask for help or hire a trainer.

When I hired my first trainer, it was strictly for education. I wanted to learn how to lift properly. You can even find some awesome free workouts on Bodybuilding.com, Pinterest, and Instagram!

Safety and Form are always the most important.

Trust me, once you get comfortable in the weight section of the gym, you will be more fit, feel like a beast, and have a new found level of confidence.