On top of my fitness blog, I also write fiction novels. Click on the link above to view and download my ebooks to your tablet.
As a recovering food-aholic, I have committed myself to helping others find the best method to getting healthy. Follow my blog to stay up-to-date on everything health and fitness. You can also book me for training sessions if you live in the Kailua Kona area on the Big Island of Hawaii.
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I truly thought I was unteachable–that I would never reach a point of happiness with my body. There were just too many dark and twisted thoughts in my brain, too much sadness when I looked in the mirror, and so much obsession of what entered my mouth. I inhaled and exhaled bitterness over how much I had to work to lose a pound or how it came so easily to someone else. I was unteachable, unchangeable, stuck, immoveable, and in other words, a lost cause.
I remember praying one day. “God, if you could just change this one part of my life, I would be so grateful. Yet, I don’t believe. I don’t believe that it can be changed. I feel as though this is just my burden. It feels impossible.”
With every part of my soul…
The soul of the girl that would cry in the mirror…
The soul of the girl that would pinch the fat on the back of her arm…
The soul of the girl that got angry at her big thighs…
The soul of the little girl that was called fatso by her grandmother and by friends on the playground…
I wanted to find peace…no matter what it looked like.
And strangely even with all of the disbelief, changes started happening, but it wasn’t without hard work. I suppose what God gave me instead of just taking it away, was the ability to fight back. I became a warrior in my own skin. This girl who felt so weak, started to drag swords along with her into the fight, even though she felt tired and inadequate. Somehow by dragging my weapons even though I had no idea how to use them, the stance, the technique, all started to come to me. Call it maturity. Call it wisdom.
Call it mostly…
A girl who was simply fed up. Who had despised her body enough and spent too many years unable to help others because she was trapped in a box, full of herself with no ability to see the needs of anyone else.
We all feel ready to give up at some point. We all feel ready to throw up our hands at some point.
It’s not everyday that we feel ready to fight. I grabbed hold of what started to work. I started to feel the change…started to feel the confidence…started to feel the heaviness stripped from my back…somedays it would be tougher than others…somedays I would take steps back…many days I would feel like quitting…but in the end I knew…
There was too much to do to be defined by an appearance. There were too many people to love to keep focusing on myself and the shallowness of what I was on the outside.
There were five main ways I started to battle the brokenness…
*** My eyes were opened to the waste of seconds, minutes, hours, days, weeks, months, and years that I was spending on ME. Even though they were self deprecating, they were still taking my focus off of my worth and onto my crap. I couldn’t do anything but feel sorry for myself in those moments and it was a waste of who I was.
*** My eyes were opened to health. My strength was a blessing and not a curse. I had the opportunity to push my body, mind, and soul beyond the box I had painted around me with a hate covered brush. What I put into my body gave me the energy to help others. A bad mood could be as simple as too much sugar and the way my body feels from that…so when I filled it with food that produced energy then I had more ability to give back.
*** My eyes were opened to society’s woman that was making me feel inadequate. My body wanted to be strong and not skinny. I took my eyes off of ideals and focused on an ideal for my body. Skinny wasn’t important when I was working out, but neither was a six pack. If I could keep my body moving and feeling healthy, that was important.
*** My eyes were opened to the obsession of my society–the perfect jeans, the perfect clothes, the tall and slim silhouette, the long straight hair, the skinny thighs, the gap between the thighs, or on the other side, the muscles rippling, the perfectly lean six pack. Either way, our society is obsessed with the look. I had to remind my thoughts of what really mattered. What mattered was my heart. What mattered was that I was taking care of myself. What mattered were others. I started wearing sun dresses and staying away from jeans…my thighs were better that way.
*** I thought of my two little girls and what I wanted them to see as I raised them. I wanted them to see a woman with enough time to love on everyone because she wasn’t so obsessed with herself. I wanted them to see a woman who praises the body for what it can do rather than berates it for what it can’t do. I wanted them to see the beauty that is in this world not the beauty of a face.
You are not impossible. You have more to give to the world than just a heap of bad thoughts and self pity. You have enough strength it just has to be dug out from under the crap people have shoveled onto you.
Worth is yours upon birth, not upon perfection. Take it, find it, uncover it, or discover it.
Nothing is impossible.
I wanted to share with you guys an awesome and easy-to-make chicken salad recipe I found on Skinny Ms. I am too busy right now to cook so I’m constantly looking for easy recipes that I can have my husband prepare. Yesterday I found this one and passed it on so that he could make it for lunch. We eat clean in our home so we already had all but one ingredient. My husband jumped on his moped for a quick trip to the store and within minutes was back at the house cooking away.
We decided not to use the pita bread, but instead use the romaine leaves as a shell in order to avoid the grain. It was slightly too “peppery” for our preference, so next time we will cut the amount of pepper in half. Also, I personally liked the grapes so I requested that Ben add more next time. Grilling the chicken on the bbq kept it nice and moist.
The recipe is listed below for your convenience or click on the link to go directly to the Skinny Ms. website:
Servings: 4 | Calories: 240 | Previous Points: 4 | Points Plus: 6 | Total Fat: 2 g | Saturated Fat: 1 g | Trans Fat: 0 g | Cholesterol: 43 mg | Sodium: 683 mg | Carbohydrates: 32 g | Dietary Fiber: 4 g | Sugars: 8 g | Protein: 24 g
In a large bowl, mix all of the salad ingredients. Chicken salad can be eaten as is or eat as a pita sandwich. Recipe serves 4.
I can only tell you about cardio as I have witnessed with myself and my clients. There seems to be much confusion about cardio, and honestly, it’s completely understandable. Why? Because everyone reacts so differently to cardio. I’ve spent my life confused by it!
If you had asked me in high school when I was at my heaviest, how much cardio I would need to do to lose weight, I would have told you I would have to run…FOREVER!
Then I was introduced to Circuit Training and the combination of weights with cardio seemed to be the answer to everything. I mean everyone was saying that this would burn body fat like a banshee. Which, is true…to an extent.
With all of these things, I was only able to get to a certain point.
Heres a reminder of my timeline:
1. Dropped weight by cutting portions and lost 20 pounds.
2. Started eating “Healthier” (not clean, but low fat, low calories) and lost more weight.
****At this point I’m smaller but still a high amount of body fat
3. Started doing yoga and Pilates, was able to get a little bit more toned, but not low body fat.
4. Got pregnant, dropped sugar, dropped a bit more body fat.
5. Started Tracey Anderson, got really small, but still felt soft!
6. Started Circuit Training and started to see muscle definition.
****At this point I was still higher in body fat.
This leaves me to where I am at now and what I have found!
For certain people, it doesn’t matter what you do…if you have a high amount of muscle then anything will work! For all of you, just keep doing what you are doing.
If you are like me…
When I lose weight, the first thing that I lose is my muscle! Especially if I lose the weight through cardio or low calories!!! I can build a butt and in one month lose everything I have built if I do too much cardio or eat too little! So I get little, but never lean…
Let me repeat that…
With the timeline I gave you before, I couldn’t cardio my way to lean! I could be smaller, but take off the clothes and WHOA NELLIE–everything is soft! Circuit training made me fit, gave me a bigger amount of muscle, made my endurance fantastic, but I was still holding on to the last bit of body fat.
Yet there was ONE thing that I was never willing to try!
ONE THING that I kept ignoring all these years.
To SLOW it down, separate the cardio from the weights, and really push weight. If felt wrong to lower cardio because of our false illusions of cardio.
Instead of integrating 100 burps, 75 squat jumps, and 200 sprints in each Circuit Training Workout, I tried to stop moving and start focusing. I started doing a five day split with only weights, and three days of cardio (NEVER AT THE SAME TIME AS MY WEIGHT TRAINING).
Suddenly my body fat dropped dramatically.
So here’s the point of this post…
If you are always feeling as though you are working SO hard and nothing is helping you get LEAN like you want to be, then I suggest that you slow it down and lift.
Here’s a trick to know whether you are in the right place to try this…
1. Are you connected to every single muscle? Can you stretch out your arms and feel your triceps behind your arm? Can you squeeze every muscle on your body and feel it contract? If not, you need to slow it down and come back to an understanding of each muscle. Feel it move. Feel it contract. If you can’t feel it when you start lifting slow and steady, just go through the motions and give it a couple of days. The feeling will begin to connect with your brain.
Eventually after slow and steady lifting, you should be connected to every muscle. This gives our movements more focus!!
2. If you have so much cardio in between all of your weight lifting that your ability to lift heavy is dramatically decreased, then you might need to slow it down. We can waste a lot of muscle energy on cardio and never get connected to our muscles.
3. If you have a tendency to lose any definition the smaller you get, then you might need to work on building before you can ever think about more cardio.
4. If you are working out and working out, and eating clean and you still don’t ever drop weight or body fat (in fact, you feel bigger the more you workout) you might want to try and slow it down!
5. Try and follow these suggested guidelines:
***If you have never worked out and need to lose 30+ pounds-add cardio in for 3-5 days a week, 30-45 minutes. Any exercise and eating healthy will help you lose.
***If you are healthy, fit, and you have tried everything, but you can’t lose the last few pounds…and your circuit trainings are mixed with weights and cardio and it’s STILL not working, you may be overdoing the cardio. Slow it down. Do more back to back sets, and extend your energy on higher weights.
***If you seem to be able to change your body into what you desire regardless of what you try, then congratulations, you are blessed!
Overall, people should aim for 2-3 sessions of 30 minute cardio or 2 sessions of HIIT for 10-20 minutes, and 4-5 sessions of strength training for forty-five minutes.
I hope that helps!