Consistency. At least once in a while.

Start… stop.
Start again.. stop.
Start and go a little bit longer and stop.. again.
How many times have you stopped and started a healthy eating plan or exercise routine?
Ok, I won’t make you answer that question.
But answer this for me.. tell me about the success you’ve had when you stayed with a ‘program’ for at least two months?
If you’ve stayed with something for that amount of time, you likely have a success story of SOME level, right?
Let me answer that for you- yes. :-)
Success doesn’t come overnight. If we want results we’re going to have to STAY WITH SOMETHING longer than a few days or a week.
Yes, I know, this is crazy obvious. And yet, I hear people complaining ALL THE TIME that X, Y or Z doesn’t work for them and they NEED to try something else.
(What they’re really saying is- X, Y or Z is too hard, and they don’t want to do anything hard so they need to find something easier.)
Yes, I know there are a lot of reasons WHY it’s difficult, but the bottom line is, we cannot say that eating right and working out doesn’t work if we haven’t really given it a fair chance.

Try this: Challenge yourself. Seek accountability. Stay the course. See the results.

Challenge yourself-

Set a goal date that is 2-3 months from now and commit to eating healthy whole foods (protein, healthy fats, veggies and some fruit and nuts) and exercise 3-4 times per week until then. Take measurements and photos, weigh yourself and most of all- don’t quit.

Seek accountability-
Ask someone that you KNOW will keep you accountable and give you a seriously hard time if you even consider quitting. Ask them to contact you once or twice a week to see how you’re doing. Give them accountability questions to ask you to cut to the chase, questions that you can’t answer- generally. Even better, find a buddy who will do this with you, 100%.

Stay the course-
Plan out what foods are going to be allowed in your diet and which ones are not. Put this list on a wipe board or somewhere you will see it every day. Don’t buy these foods, these items are non-negotiables, don’t bring them into your home. Plan how many times a week you’re going to exercise and what you’re going to do. Seek out encouragement and motivation and walk away from those things that are discouraging (i.e. a desserts board on pinterest, lol) Stay focused on your goal of- finishing.

See the results-
(Barring any serious medical conditions,) you WILL reap the benefits of all your hard work. Go 2-3 months longer and you’ll reap even more benefits. Make it a lifetime decision and you’ll see ongoing results.

It’s not that hard. We make it REALLY hard though, don’t we? :-)
It boils down to consistency. To which there is no half-way. Either we are consistent with healthy eating and working out or we’re not.
When I am consistent with my healthy lifestyle, I see results. I suspect it’s the same for you. The best part about all of this? We can change at any moment! Isn’t that awesome?!
If we are chronic quitters and/or we have a history of being inconsistent with our healthy eating and workouts, that can end- TODAY.
Yes it can.
You can do this.
Consistency is your friend, embrace her, she’s your ticket to success.

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Superwoman

Do you do anything in your life right now, that makes you feel like Superwoman? (Assuming you’re a woman, of course..)
Something that makes you feel invincible, powerful and ready to take on anything?!?

I do. It’s called Demolition. ‘Demo’ for short.
And I LOOOOVE it! :-)
So what do I demolish? Walls. Plaster and lath, sheetrock, ceramic tile, wood, concrete.. whatever.

Why do I do this?
Well.. my husband and I bought a 104 year old home that every single flippin’ inch needed remodeling, so we had to take out walls, lots of different flooring and various wood structures.

We’ve also been doing various demo and reconstruction projects for the last 17 years. We’re crazy like that.

It’s tough work, not for the faint of heart or those worried about breaking a nail. Depending on what we’re working on we can easily be covered from head to toe in dirt, concrete or sheetrock dust, and sweat. Yeah, lots of sweat, we are absolutely filthy when we finish.
So why would I do this?
Well, for one, because it needs to be done, and two.. because I can.
Yeah. I can.
Give me a wonderbar in one hand and a hammer in the other and I will take down ANYTHING.
And the grin on my face under my mask will be huge while I’m doing it.
Why? Because I love the fact that I am not only capable of doing this, but I can do it well.
What I (may?) lack in strength (compared to the opposite sex) I will more than make up for in stamina. I don’t quit till the job is done.
And when I’m done, I’m crazy tired and likely bleeding somewhere, but on the inside I’m on top of the world, ready and willing to take on ANYTHING.
In my own little world, I am Superwoman. (Powerful, capable and strong.)
But my husband (lovingly) calls me- Beast.
So I ask you again, do you have anything in your life that you accomplish that makes you feel SUPER?
Something that stretches you?
Something that’s tough?
Something that takes a great deal of effort and thus gives a great deal of pride once completed?
We need these things.
And this is not the same kind of ‘amazing’ that a haircut or new outfit brings, this is the kind of ‘amazing’ that can only come with accomplishment. With facing something tough and tearing through it. And coming out on the other side- victorious.
In the midst of our crazy lives where we are burdened with issue upon issue, we need pockets of straightforward success here and there to remind us that we can make it and we can succeed in very tough circumstances.
We are capable. We are Super. And we can handle Anything that comes our way.

Without these ‘successes’, these moments of awesome achievement, we start to shrivel, and doubt starts to creep in and ‘everything’ seems so overwhelming and we think we can’t make it if we don’t ‘escape’ (to get a manicure, a drink, or eat junk) so we can deal with life again.
Nonsense.
You are so much stronger than you think you are. You may have forgotten this, but the fact remains. You may need to tackle and conquer something bigger than you to refresh your memory of your strength, but it’s there, I promise you.

While leading a group of college girls through a workout not too long ago, I told them of another benefit of exercise that’s often overlooked:
When we face a tough workout that we really don’t want to do or don’t think we can do, but we roll up our sleeves and do it anyways, afterwards, after we’ve pressed on, pushed hard, done our best and finished.. we get to enjoy the gift of accomplishment and we also realize that every ‘impossible’ task we overcome gives us strength and determination to handle the next one, be it in the gym or not. Working-out is a strength builder that carries much further than the walls of a gym.

Some will run to get a pedicure or go shopping when the going gets tough. Fortunately, life never afforded me those options. And I say “fortunately” because without those options, I was forced to develop my ‘perseverance muscle’, and it’s strong now.
Earlier I said my husband and I had been doing demo and rebuilding for the last 17 years, but I had forgotten about this photo here…
This is me and my brother and sisters (minus one) when I was 16 years old (I’m in the center not holding anything). Apparently my Mom looked at two short brick walls and a large L-shaped patch of concrete and it never occurred to her that we couldn’t break this down. She told us it needed to be done and using a sledgehammer we did it. We took turns destroying this sore sight in the yard, till it was no more. No gloves, no protective eye wear, no steel-toed boots. Just grit.
Was it ‘fun’ to do this? Maybe for the first few minutes, but those were (really) rough times, and I’m sure I welcomed the opportunity to work some frustration off. Would I have rather gone swimming or read a book or hung out with friends? Uh, yeah. But it was during these years that I was learning just how strong I was (we all were). Not by choice, we never choose adversity, right? But it’s in the fire, in those moments when we want to quit, but don’t because that option isn’t even on the table, that we find there’s really something in us, in all of us… that’s Super.
Thanks, Mom.

The master of…

Working with people who are trying to lose weight, I’ve noticed something:
People are either a master at making progress or they’re a master at making excuses. Some excuses are so clever, so well thought out, that seriously, if there was a book made on the top 100 excuses of all time, these finely crafted gems would be at the top of the list, yup, they’re that good.
So let’s talk about you.

Are you making progress or are you making excuses?

It’s really that simple. No.. It really is.
Because when we really want something, we make a way. Don’t we?
Think about the last time you reeeeeally wanted something, (other than a smaller jean size), How hard did you work for it? What were you willing to sacrifice to get it? How well did you plan ahead to make sure it happened?
It’s really not about losing weight, (well it shouldn’t be) but working towards being the healthiest version of you. Weight loss will automatically come when we ditch the processed junk in our diets, eat whole foods, drink water, stop with our emotional eating/boredom eating and implement an exercise plan.
It’s really not that difficult. Really it’s not.
Unless…
We’re just not ready. In other words, we want something MORE than we want our health and figure back.
That ‘more’ could be anything.
We can say all we want that- we want to lose weight or we want to get our health back on track but the bottom line is this: if we aren’t quite ready to give up our comfort foods, learn new habits and get up and get moving, we will find every excuse in the book for staying exactly where we are.

So the question is this..
What do you want? No really.. What Do YOU Want?
(You KNOW what’s coming next.. yup, my favorite quote.)

“Decide what you want,
decide what you’re willing to give up for it,
establish your goals and get to work.” ~Hunt

Ask yourself- Am I making excuses or am I making progress?
(And here’s a tip.. you’ll grow when you get quiet long enough to hear the answer.)
Because we cannot do both. If you’re ready for change in whatever area of your life, you’ll find that excuses are no longer part of who you are. When they pop into your head, you will recognize them for what they are, get rid of them and keep moving forward. You will begin to look at obstacles as opportunities.

Can I tell you what you already know?
You can do this. Yup, you can.
So, lay down the excuses.. and pick up the keys to your future. :-)

You are what you…

You are what you… listen to.

You thought this was going to be about food, didn’t you. :-)

You probably thought I was going to say:
YOU ARE WHAT YOU EAT.
Well, we all know that, don’t we.. (please say- yes..) it makes little difference on how most people feed themselves, but yeah, we all know that, right?
Next.

You are what you watch on tv and in the theater and online.

You are what you read.

If you want to know what/who you are going to be in a few years, look no further than your friends and/or your media choices.

We’ve heard it a thousand times- You become who you hang around (the younger crowd still doesn’t buy it, us older folks- we know it’s true), but what happens when you ‘hang around’ just as many television shows, movies, music, games, books as you do actual people?
Well, hmmm.. it’s no different. You become.. what you hang around.

What you feed your mind is just as much a contributor to who you are as your eating choices.
Wait, you don’t think what you watch, read, or listen to has any impact on you?  Really?

The average cost for a 30 second commercial in the Superbowl is 3.5 MILLION dollars. Folks, EVERYONE  in marketing and advertising knows that everything you see, hear and read has an impact on you. And that impact will shape who you become. It will shape how you feel about yourself, your income, your car, your clothes, your values, your family, your career, your looks, your future, your spouse… And 30 seconds? WOW, they can just about own you with that much time in your head. That’s the ONLY reason anyone would be willing to pay that much for just 30 seconds. And HOURS?!?

Look back at how your views and values (good and bad) have changed over the years, they can all be traced back to what you read, saw, listened to or were modeled.

I challenge you to guard what goes into your mind as closely as you guard what goes into your mouth. Take a closer look at what you’re taking in. The mind, body and soul are all connected, to be health conscience is not merely about watching what you eat, it’s time to start taking care of our whole body health.

Since I’m going to become what I read, watch and listen to, I want my choices to reflect my values and my goals.
I want to be fed with possibility and potential.. I want something to aspire to.
I want my choices to point to the person I want to be in a few years from now.

It’s only week #2 and I’m ready to quit.. help?

What is it about the two-week point in your quest to eat clean and lose weight that is so tough to get past? I’ve heard from many of you that you do GREAT for two weeks and then ‘something’ happens, and before you know it- you’re off track (again?).
We could talk forever about the reasons why… but can I just encourage you for a bit? Thanks, thanks (this is my favorite part). :-)

So…
Look how far you’ve come.
No really, do it. When you started two weeks ago, did you think you could make it this far? It’s TOUGH to let go of junk food and sodas and sugary coffee drinks… etc..
VERY tough.
But you did it. YOU did it.
YOU started (which is the toughest part of all) when everyone else was still making excuses. (Do you need to reread that last sentence? It’s HUGE.)
YOU stepped up and took control of your life and your eating habits in spite of a very busy life.

Remember this.
Remember how hard it was and how much you worked to overcome the obstacles.
Remember every time you chose something healthy over something unhealthy. Remember how hard you worked to plan your meals so you would have good food to eat.
Remember.. and be proud of yourself.

Now let’s look forward.
You have a goal, whether its a number on the scale, a certain size pair of jeans, running a marathon, you name it.. but YOU have it. It’s all yours.
See that goal, take a few minutes to see yourself THERE. Finished.
No matter how you’re feeling right now, let me just tell you..
That goal.. YOUR goal is TOTALLY and COMPLETELY possible. Did you hear me?
It’s possible.
You just need to do one thing.

Keep going.

Don’t quit. Don’t try to figure out how you’re going to ‘do this’ for months or years.
Think about your next meal and making it healthy.
Think about kicking some serious butt in your next workout.
Take it one choice, one action, one decision at a time.

Don’t quit.

Take a deep breath (or six) and focus on your goal and do what it takes to stay in the game.
This is your life, and your goal and they are worth fighting for.
You can do this.
Yes, YOU can.
Now, go be the awesome, motivated, hard working, WINNER that you are.
Yeah, you can do that, too.

“I wanna get in shape this year, but….”

Good grief.. there’s always a ‘but’ or an excuse in there somewhere… right?!

“I don’t want to give up my starbucks, I need it to get going.”
“You don’t understand how much I love bread.”
“I just have these cravings for ice cream and I can’t help myself.”
“You don’t expect me to give up chocolate, do you?”
“I have to have my diet coke.”

What’s wrong with us these days? Why do we think we can get something for nothing? Why do we think we can have something amazing without sacrifice?

It’s this simple.
Ready?
If you want to be fit and healthy, you gotta start by giving up the crap you’re eating and drinking.

That’s it.
No other way around it.
Nothing of value comes without hard work. And sometimes the hardest work is walking away from our crutches.

If you’re not willing to address your food addictions, emotional eating, and bad habits, get comfortable where you are, because that’s where you’re staying.


So the question is simple.
What do YOU want and what are you willing to give up for it?

The rest of that quote is this:
Set your priorities and go to work. (Hunt)
You can do it.

This year doesn’t have to be a repeat of all the other years, it really doesn’t. This year can be the one you drop the excuses and change your life for good. It all boils down to this.

You must decide.

Just begin.

Where ever you are is the best place to start.

So many distractions in life to take our minds off of what we’re aiming for, what we’re trying to become or finish. So many forks in the road.
So many excuses. :-)
The awesome thing is, we never have to wait for tomorrow or even Monday to start over. We don’t have to wait till we’re a certain size to go back to the gym and we don’t have to wait till we have our own act together before we can reach out and help someone else along. We don’t have to wait for anything to do what we know we need to do.
We just have to decided we want to start over. We have to want to.
The line is in the stand, just step over it. Don’t wait for an invitation or approval.
And definitely don’t wait for the right time, because you’re gonna be sitting there for a long time. :-)
It’s always the right time to do something good.

Where ever you are is the best place to start.