Monday, November 6, 2017

Continue To Challenge Yourself

Okay, first off....I had NO IDEA it had been so long since I've been on here. Where has the time gone! Work has been crazy, I've been trying to adjust to some changes in my workouts at FT, and just really haven't felt like writing and posting. I've had plenty to write, but just wasn't motivated to post anything. I truly thought it had only been a little over a month but apparently it's been like three months! But, what I'm excited to write about is something new in my fitness journey!

I’m always looking for new things to challenge myself for two reasons. One, I tend to get bored and once that happens I tend to get discouraged and start becoming less motivated. And two, the main reason, is because I need to continuously strive to grow, improve, and better myself. Here these last several months I’ve been struggling to stay consistently motivated and a lot of it is I’m bored with my workouts and the environment. It’s not that the workouts aren’t good, and I still love my FT family dearly, but I no longer feel challenged and feel like my growth has stalled. So, I decided to incorporate a new training method in hopes to be challenged and to help get me closer to my goals.

Today I went to my first Taekwondo class at Jenks Martial Arts Academy. That's me after the class. I was nervous, but I also know that’s a good sign that I’m getting outside my comfort zone. I know this journey will not only challenge me physically, but mentally as well because it will take a lot of both. I’m excited to see where this takes me on my fitness journey. I look forward to seeing what results I will get and meeting my goals.

Thursday, August 24, 2017

Loving Myself

I'm ugly.
I'm fat.
I'm worthless.
I don't deserve to be happy.
I'm not important.
What's wrong with me?
I hate myself.

We all have something we don't like about ourselves and want to change. I think we all at some point have had at least one of these thoughts I listed above, but for me I had them all. I had a lot taken away from me with four years of sexual abuse when I was younger. My self esteem and trust in others were the two big ones. I felt ashamed, embarrassed, and had all these thoughts for many years which also had a major negative impact on my life through the majority of my young adult life. The abuse happened between the ages of 12-16, but I didn't seek any type of professional help and counseling until I was 29. So all those years I did my best to block it all out and just forget that it ever happened, except it's not that easy. Of course by the time I was almost 30, all these negative thoughts I had about myself I truly believed were true and suffered severe depression. I limited my interactions with people and shut people out, as well as who I would be friends with. I didn't allow too many people into my life due to trust issues as well as fear of being hurt. I also know I missed out on many good friendships and relationships because of this as well.

So I'm 29, depressed and crying at the drop of a hat, and going off on everyone at work. My boss calls me into his office asking what's wrong with me. After several times telling him nothing, I finally confided in him and it was the first time I told anyone about it outside my parents. For 13 years I tried to block all of it out, but as I started to turn 30 I realized how much I missed out on life and I never even allowed myself to even have a real relationship. I was scared once I told him of what he would think, but I was surprised when he supported me in making sure I got the help I needed. He convinced me to see a counselor, and then within a couple weeks of counseling I was seeing a psychiatrist to manage my anxiety and depression medication. At first I thought, it's been 13 years since the abuse stopped, it's too late to get help. I've already missed out on so much, quit college, and was working two jobs just so I could stay busy so I wouldn't have to interact with people. But, I'm so grateful I took that major step because that's when I took my life back. After two years of counseling I had really come a long way. I no longer felt guilty, or felt I did anything wrong, I knew I deserved to be happy and have good people and things in my life, and more importantly I knew I was no longer allowing him or my past to control me.

So, I was in a better place and decided to go back to college. I went back and earned my associates and my bachelors in business management. And with just a few months left before graduating I realized I was 350 pounds because eating is how I dealt with my emotions and stress. So in March of 2011 I hired a personal trainer. The first time I met Michael Watkins, owner at Fitness Together I was scared, but knew I needed professional help. I showed up to my consult, committed to the minimum package of three months because I didn't think I would even last that long, and here I am over six years later. In that time I've lost a total of 153 pounds, have had a small set back but still no where near where I was at and getting it back off, and I'm the healthiest I've ever been. I just mentioned this the other day that I went in there to hire a personal trainer, but I feel God led me there and blessed me with friends and another family. Michael has actually become one of my mentors and has been the best one I've ever had. Sometimes when he's giving me advice it's pretty straight forward, maybe some cuss words to enhance what he has to say, but I know what he's telling me is what I need to hear and it's truly because he does care. And to be honest that's why I respect him, his advice, and what makes him a great leader. I've learned so much between my past years of counseling and having him as a mentor.

But, despite all the counseling, and even though I'm still 200% in a better place in life than I was in 2013 when I started seeing a counselor, the memories never truly go away and things pop up from time to time that are difficult to deal with. Things from time to time trigger these feelings and memories, and even though they aren't easy to deal with, I do handle it a lot better than I used to. I don't shut down, but instead I reach out to someone to talk to and then I face it and deal with it. It's not easy, sometimes lots of tears and anger comes back up, but at least I'm not ignoring it and hoping it goes away because trust me it won't.

Just recently I've struggled with the memories being triggered, causing bad dreams and being emotional and trying to stay positive. Earlier this week I talked with Michael and I had mentioned how I have an analytical mind, but my heart isn't. It's very emotional. I told him I wished I didn't care as much or wish I didn't have feeling and life would be a lot easier. Then he said something that I've been meditating on for a couple days. He said I shouldn't wish those things and that even though what I went through was bad it still made me the person I am today. It's made me caring and compassionate for others because I don't want to see people hurting the way I did. I want to see people happy, healthy, and loving themselves.

So, as I'm reflecting on all this I started to think about where I used to be and where I'm at in life now. It's not perfect, but it's a lot better, because I have been blessed with amazing friends and family who have supported me and been there for me when I need them the most.

So now when I look in the mirror I no longer have those negative thoughts, but instead I say to myself......

I'm ugly.     I'm beautiful.
I'm fat.     I'm fit and healthy.
I'm worthless.     I'm worth everything.
I don't deserve to be happy.     I deserve to be happy.
I'm not important.     I'm the most important person in my life.
What's wrong with me?     I'm awesome.
I hate myself.     I LOVE MYSELF!!!!!!

Sunday, July 30, 2017

August 2017 Challenge

Here is the challenge I'm starting this coming Tuesday, August 1st. Click on the image to enlarge for better viewing. If you would like me to email you the challenge, just message or email me. I'm doing this challenge in conjunction with another challenge I accepted with another group. They will go good together so hopefully the month of August I will have some good results.

Monday, July 24, 2017

What's A Hero?

What's a hero? A hero is defined by Merriam-Webster as "A person admired for achievements and noble qualities. One who shows great courage."

When we are asked, "Who are your heroes?" I believe we tend to immediately think of those who have been there for us when we needed them the most and who taught us life lessons. For me personally the people that come to mind first are my parents, grandparents, and my friends/mentors Michael, Pastor John, and Pastor Scott.

But, what about those heroes who aren't there for you, but their achievements, noble qualities, and their great courage touch your life? What about those heroes who you have never met, or have met just a few times, yet they touch your life and inspire you in some way? For me these heroes are little, but mighty, and they are our Wrestling For A Cause (WFC) kids. WFC is about helping kids who are fighting cancer and about raising awareness to childhood cancer. WFC is getting ready to celebrate 6 years and we've helped so many families in this time, and I'm proud to say I've been a part of it in some way for over 4 years now. I started coming as a fan, to watch the wrestling and just support the cause. But, since January 2016 I've been more involved by being their ringside photographer. Not only am I more involved with the cause and helping them out, but it got me more involved with the families. I'm getting the opportunity to get to know the kids and the families on a more personal level.

All of the kids are my heroes. The way they fight and the great courage they show as they battle day in and day out this horrible disease that's called cancer. Today I found out this morning Princess Aaliyah earned her angel wings at 4:43 AM, and as hard as it is on me, I still can't imagine how hard it is on the parents, families, and friends of these kids who have been there their whole lives. This past year four of our heroes earned those angel wings, but we have many kids still fighting. And in honor of those who have been taken away from this world way too soon, I will continue to fight for them and with other kids by being a part of WFC and doing my part to help these families and raise awareness to childhood cancer.

You have all touched many lives, including mine, and are an inspiration to many! These kids and their legacy will live on forever through their families, friends, and people like me. People who will continue the fight for them.

RIP and fly high Aaliyah, Jasmine, Kai, and Luther. You are loved by so many!

Aaliyah and her daddy Rod
Jasmine (right) with Maddie who is still fighting

Me with Kai and his daddy Gary

Tuesday, June 27, 2017


I know, I know, I know....once again I'm back saying it's been way too long! And to be honest, me not blogging regularly is just one way I'm self sabotaging myself. I keep telling myself every week that I've got to get back to this. I need to get back to my meditating, journaling, and blogging. Not only for myself, but I started this blog to help inspire and motivate others. Well, today I did some meditating at lunch and my thoughts led to self-sabotage, and not only for what that means for me personally, but why do we do this to ourselves? We all do it in some way.

So, just to get you up to date on what's been going on. I am still at Fitness Together, but he is in the process of going down to one location. He's closing the downtown studio, but keeping the Riverside studio. What does this mean for me personally? Well, it means I'm back to 5:15 AM workouts because now I won't be able to make the drive to the studio while at work during my lunch break. But, that's okay, the change I believe will be good for me. I just started the new schedule, as well with a new trainer he hired, and I'm actually feeling a lot better. I have found that on the days I get up early (3:45 AM), that not only do I feel better once I've done the workout, but it starts my day off better. To be honest, since the first of the year I have been making changes in training schedules and trainers just trying to find what works, but it seems I never truly found that balance I needed. I think there were times I thought what I was doing was better, but I think really I was just trying to not be a burden and just get in there and do my workouts. But, even in just these last couple days I'm already seeing and feeling that it's going to help me be more consistent in my schedule by getting back down to the Riverside studio early mornings (I'll have my routine all week), I like the new trainer, and I'm actually using my lunch to just create space for myself by reading, meditating, journaling, etc.

So, today like I said, I started to think about self-sabotage. This is something I'm constantly doing it seems like, and I think in general we all tend to do this to some degree. I mean it's like, we start feeling great about ourselves and what we're doing, and so what do we do? We somehow get in our own head and start creating chaos that leads to us doing the things that cause us to self-sabotage. To each of us those things are different. For me personally, what I was thinking is how these past few days I've been getting back to some basics. Like meditating and journaling, doing the early morning workouts, and even the simple things like drinking my water like I should. I feel amazing and I do so much better in my workouts when I get up early and workout, drink my water throughout the day like I should, and make those healthy eating choices. I stopped running so I'm back to square one training for a half marathon in December, even though once I've gone out and run I always feel so much better. So why is it that I stop doing these things knowing that I'm going to feel physically horrible, which leads to me feeling mentally and emotionally drained? Because this is what I tend to do, I self-sabotage when things are going good and I'm feeling good!

But, that stops today! I'm not saying I won't have bad days because I'm not perfect, but it does mean I'm going to be more self aware of the things that trigger me to self-sabotage. So what I encourage you to do is what I did. I took the time to just reflect on the things I do that make me feel good, as well as how I feel when I don't do them. Then, I made a note of what I need to do to make sure I'm not going to get in my own head and cause that unnecessary chaos. And then I'm going to do exactly what the picture quote says, I'm going to be prepared each day to confront my own self-sabotage. I'm going to do this by staying focused on my goals. I've been so worried about what could go wrong with all the changes, that I didn't allow myself to see the opportunities with the changes.

Monday, May 15, 2017

St. Jude Half Marathon 2017

Last year I ran my first half marathon and it was a great accomplishment; but this year I've decided to do another half marathon but this time it's more than just for myself or an accomplishment. This year I'm running to help raise funds for St. Jude Children's Research Hospital and raise awareness for childhood cancer. I was inspired to do this by all the kids and families I've met through a local charity organization Wrestling For A Cause where I'm one of the ringside photographers. I'm running for all these kids I've seen fight so hard! They are the true heroes!

The race is December 2, 2017 and takes place in Memphis, Tennessee. I've officially registered and have set a minimum goal of $500. My $50 registration fee has been applied to my personal goal and so I only have $450 minimum to raise by December 2nd. I have no doubt with the help of my friends, family, and others who are inspired to help I will meet my goal. If at least 45 people donated only $10 each I would meet my goal. Please consider not only supporting my participation, but also these kids and St. Jude Children's Research Hospital, by clicking on the link for my personal fund raising page. Click HERE FOR MY PERSONAL PAGE to donate and help make a difference, and help me reach my goal. Thank you in advance for you support!

Below is just one of the many kids who have touched my life, inspired me, and why I've decided to do this run. We need more research and cures for these kids. They deserve more and whatever small role I can play in that, I'm honored to do so. Please, again, consider helping out by clicking on my personal link above and making a donation. In loving memory of Warrior Kai.

Wednesday, April 5, 2017

When You Get Burned Out

I know it's been awhile since I've written anything and the truth is I've just been unmotivated and burned out. This is something that we all go through, and I've been this way before, but this time it was different and it lasted a few months. The last few months I've had some transitions and adjustments in my trainers, workouts, and then trying to balance everything else in life I got really overwhelmed. But, because I'm all about being honest and real, there's a lot I stopped doing like my daily meditation, journaling, creating space, and really started to do for everyone else and not for myself and this didn't help the situation at all. I guess the two most important things to point out is, one I never gave up. I still showed up for my workouts but it was my nutrition that I allowed to suffer. I stopped weighing in, I still planned/prepped my meals but I didn't write anything down, and I also didn't stick with what I planned and prepped. The second thing is a few weeks ago I realized what was happening. I took a couple weeks "off" from everything outside my private training sessions and then I reached out to Michael and Sully. I was able to explain what I felt worked for me, what I felt like I didn't have anymore in this transition (which the truth is I still had it, I just failed to communicate what I needed and what I was feeling), and what I needed to be able to get back on track and be successful.

So, I set my goal and the three of us are in the process of getting on the same page so I have what I need to meet my goals. I truly was in burn out mode, and what I'm grateful for is that I have amazing trainers at Fitness Together like Michael and Sully. They take the time to listen to me vent and express what I'm feeling and thinking, but then they actually help me work through it and then are there to help guide me. One of the things we did was an assessment on Monday, and it was a real eye-opener because in these last few months I gained about 30 pounds. But, like I said I've gotten back on track, and I know I can't be hard on myself because this is just part of the journey, and I just need to remember how much I've still accomplished and be proud that I didn't give up completely. And don't get me wrong, Michael and Sully aren't the only amazing trainers at FT, and even though they don't train me regularly they still put up with my mood swings and are always taking the time to listen to me. So big shout out to Roberto, Aaron, Colt, Matt, and Terri. And I also want to thank another FT client and sister Jennifer. She's been my running buddy for quite some time now, and she's been a great support system as far as talking. We both are looking forward to turning our runs into a couple days of just going for some mental and emotional therapeutic walks. These are going to be my recovery days and it will give us an opportunity to just go out, walk, and just enjoy talking.

Right now I'm feeling like I have this fresh start and feel like I've got a good balance to help me keep from feeling overwhelmed and burned out. And what better way to have a fresh start than with a new workout/nutrition journal? The journal that's pictured, I found today and had to get it when I saw "Trust The Journey", because when I'm struggling or doubting anything Michael is always telling me to trust the process.

Tuesday, February 14, 2017

30 Day Thigh Challenge

We all have at least one area that we would like to improve the most. Mine are my thighs. It seems when I have a set-back, like I currently had, that any weight gain I have all goes to my thighs. And nothing can remind you of your problem areas quicker than a mirror! I recently started taking a tap dancing class and last night was my second night. I’m having a lot of fun, and I do enjoy it, but like any dance studio there’s at least one wall that’s all mirror. And so as I’m going through the steps we are learning, and I’m observing myself in the mirror, I was quickly reminded that I still have some work to do to get back on track.  Luckily even when I lose that weight I gained, it does come off the thighs as well; however, I still would like to improve that area overall. So, I found this 30 day thigh challenge that I’m going to start tomorrow and wanted to encourage you to join me in on this challenge. As you can tell, it starts off with low number of reps and gradually increases throughout the 30 days. Also note the tips. The number for lateral lunges and fire hydrants is per side. Modify the exercises to suit your fitness needs, and increase reps for more of a challenge if needed. Me personally, I’m not only going to increase reps, but I’m going to do three rounds each day of the indicated exercises having a 60 second rest between rounds.

So for example, day 1 shows….
            5 lateral lunges
            10 scissors
            5 fire hydrants
            5 plie squat pulses
But, I will do……
            10 lateral lunges w/ weights
            20 scissors
            10 fire hydrants
            10 plie squat pulses w/ weights
            I will complete this 3 times and between each round I’ll take a 60 second break

By doing this, doubling the numbers, it’s going to make day 30 really challenging by doing 240 lateral lunges, 300 scissors, 150 fire hydrants, 300 plie squat pulses and doing this for three rounds!!!! J

You should be able to click on the image and enlarge it, but if you have any issues viewing it please let me know and I'll send the challenge to you in another document/format.

So.....who's in?????

Tuesday, January 10, 2017

Daily Insight - Weigh-in Update

Tuesday's are my weekly weigh-in day, and I always post my results for accountability. I didn't weigh at all in December, we did my new year assessment last week and so I have my results for the first week of 2017. I'm down exactly one pound. Not going to lie, hoping for more since I had gotten so far off track this past month, but a loss is a loss and a pound is a pound, so I'm happy the scale went down.

But, as far as my day, rough start but I finished strong and feeling better. I didn't sleep well and just was pouty this morning in my workout, but it's just something I need to work through and figure out. I did apologize to both Michael and Roberto because I was a big ass to both of them and really it's not their fault how I react to certain things and that I shut down. But, while I was at FT waiting to go on my run this evening, and since one of the girls was sick and the other was doing the class, Michael nudged me (didn't take to do the class instead because he was doing a boxing class. And it made me realize how much I've missed boxing since I cut back on that to focus on running.

I've been going back and forth on some goals because I really want to just focus on losing weight, inches, and body fat, but still want to run for my cardio. After tonight I think I figured out how I can do that and still get my running and boxing in for my cardio. For at least this month and next month, because I've got some extra expenses coming up that I hadn't planned for, I'm going to focus on running and interval training for my cardio. And then of course showing up to my sessions, leaving the bullshit at the door instead of being pouty and bitchy in my workouts; and be present mentally, emotionally, and physically regardless of what I walk into and bust my ass doing the work. Then come March, continue busting ass in my sessions, but then get back into the boxing gym three days a week. I figured I need to do cardio Monday - Friday, and I could do boxing three of those days and run the other two like I'm currently doing. This way, I'm getting the cardio in I need to get work towards my weight loss goals as well as losing inches and body fat, and I can run and box!

Overall my day was good and I'm really grateful for the patience of Michael and Roberto! It might have been a rough day, but at least I'm not letting it turn into a whole week or month of sulking like I did in December. Tomorrow is a new day!

Friday, January 6, 2017

Daily Insight - Don't Give Up

Michael is big on asking "What's your why?". Why are you doing this? Why did you start working out? Why did you start eating healthy? What is your why?

For me, almost 6 years ago, my why was I was 350 pounds and I wanted to lose weight so I could be healthier. I had been really lucky and was never diagnosed with any heart disease, no diabetes, no blood pressure or cholesterol issues. But I knew if I didn't do something about it I was heading down the road to many diseases. So that was my original why. Over the years I've set new goals along the way and there's always a reason why I set those goals. Even though my original "why" for the overall big picture is the same, from time to time I have other reasons for setting and wanting to meet goals.

Here recently I struggled with being motivated, staying on track, and even thought of leaving FT and start somewhere else. I even had questioned myself on if this was even worth it anymore. I mean I'm never going to get to my goal weight or be where I want to be, so why continue to pay the money and put forth the emotional and mental effort in something that will never be. But, because Michael is more than a trainer, but one of my mentors, I always reflect on what I'm thinking and feeling. I meditate, journal, and work through those emotions. Many times I work through those asking myself, if you told this to Michael what would he say? What advice would he give you? And usually that's enough to help me realize I'm just being a dumb ass and letting my emotions control me. Sometimes I end up needing to meet with him and he's always there to keep it real with me. And that's what I did this time and I realized some things. For starters, if I left FT I wouldn't be happy anywhere else. And also, if I stop going or give up because I'm telling myself that I'll never get to where I want to be, then I'm self-sabotaging myself and then of course I never will. But, also giving up isn't going to get me anywhere either.

As I went through this process I did a lot of asking myself, "What's my why?" And that's the reason that I'm back on track, I'm feeling awesome, I've been motivated, and why I never gave up. So that's what I encourage you to do as well. When you start to struggle, when  you want to give up, when you feel like it's not worth it, ask yourself "What's my why?" And this could be to be healthier, this could be you want to be able to play with your kids without feeling like you're an old fart running out of breath, or it could be you now have grandchildren and you want to live longer to see them grow up. Whatever your why is, always keep that close and never stop asking yourself that question.

As far as my day, it was busy and I'm glad the week's over. I had a stressful end to my day at work, but it was all better after I got to the studio for my session and got to hang out with B for a little bit before I trained and he had to leave. He's the owner's 6 year old son and we've been hanging out since he was 9 months old so it's something we like to do and don't get to do that often anymore. And he likes to train me and so he put me through a little workout and he's going to make a great trainer one day! He's learning from the best in his daddy. I really don't have much to my day today because it was so busy at work and I just got home and started on this blog post. But, it was a great day overall and I ended it with a great mobility workout.

DAILY QUOTE: "When you feel like giving up, remember why you started." - Anonymous

FIT TIP - ELEVATE THE BURN: skip the elevator. Take the stairs to burn an extra 16,425 calories per year! Little choices add up.


  1. My friends and family. I can't imagine people who truly are alone and how they get through life without anyone. I can't imagine life without my friends and family. Love you all!
  2. I don't have to worry about staying warm. It's currently 19 degrees here in Tulsa where I'm at and I'm grateful I have a home to go to. But, not just a home, but a warm home. I'm grateful I have a car so I don't have to walk in the cold or wait in the cold for a bus or a ride. I'm grateful that I have a coat, gloves, hat, scarf to keep me warm when I'm outside running to my car or to get inside the place I need to be.

Thursday, January 5, 2017

Daily Insight - Comfort Zone

I know I've talked about comfort zones before, but with today's motivational quote I decided to touch on it again because it was a great reminder that I needed.

It was actually kind of ironic because I had just sent a message to Michael this morning about some changes we've been discussing and how it will get me out of my comfort zone. And then about 2 1/2 hours later I went to go journal and the daily motivational quote was about getting out of your comfort zone. The changes we've been discussing will be more emotionally and mentally out of my comfort zone, but still I'll be pushing myself in a new way that will help me grow and become better. I even made the comment I think I've gotten too comfortable and maybe that's part of my problem.

The inserted picture has a great illustration of what can happen by staying in your comfort zone, along with what you can gain by allowing yourself to push yourself outside that comfort zone. I personally can relate to pretty much everything listed in the illustration. But, I want to go ahead and talk about what I've personally experienced by staying in my comfort zone as well as what happens when I allow myself to get out of my own way and become uncomfortable.

So what happens if I don't allow myself to get out of my comfort zone? What happens if I become comfortable with where I'm at and what I'm doing? I've learned that I stop growing, improving, and I stop getting results. I notice it on the scale, in my assessment measurements, in my clothes, and in my workouts. I start to even feel it mentally and emotionally. But the other thing that happens is I stop enjoying what I'm doing. I no longer feel challenged and start losing motivation. Then that leads to overthinking and wondering what's wrong with me and what I need to change. I find myself starting to shut down and not want to be around people.

But what happens if I do push myself out of my comfort zone? What happens when I avoid things or situations that make me uncomfortable? This is when I find myself facing challenges, which keeps me from feeling like I'm in a rut or bored. It keeps me motivated and striving to do more and be better. It pushes me to get out of my own way, to get me out of my own head, so I'm doing more than I thought I could. And this leads to me feeling better physically, mentally, and emotionally I also see the results on the scale, in my assessments, clothes, and in my workouts.

The question then is how can we continue pushing ourselves outside our comfort zone? First, I believe we need to be able to recognize those feelings or triggers that we get when we start to get too comfortable. Then reflect on what you're doing. Ask yourself, "What can I change?" "What can I do different or add?" And here's the ironic part, the things that scare you, make you feel anxious, or you doubt are more than likely the things you should do to get out of your comfort zone.

Now to my day. Kind of crazy and hectic, but I found myself not stressing. I just stayed busy rushing around. Another system issue kept me busy running up and down stairs to other departments. I feel like I got an extra cardio workout in I went up and down the stairs so much today. The issue isn't fixed, but I have the people who can fix it on the situation. And then the two things I had planned after work didn't happen. I cancelled running for a couple reasons. One, it's way too cold as it's 25 degrees here in Tulsa. We were going to meet up still and do some cardio inside the studio, but the two girls who planned on coming ended up not being able to make it so I decided to stay at work a little longer to work on some things I didn't get done due to the issues I had been dealing with. Then I was supposed to meet with someone to talk to them about what they are wanting and needing to start their health and fitness journey. She ended up not being able to make it, but I was already at Panera. I had my coffee, was working on this blog post, when she texted that she couldn't make it. Which is fine, we've been trying to meet up for a couple weeks and both of us had things come up where it didn't happen, but we'll eventually meet up. But it actually allowed me me to realize something about myself. This gave me an opportunity where I was creating space for myself and working on things to benefit me. I'm enjoying being able to sit here and just think and write while drinking some coffee, which coffee will be mentioned in our fit tip for today! :) I even started to brainstorm about a new writing project, something I've been wanting to do and never started. I actually think I found a new outlet for me to create space for myself where I can process my thoughts and emotions through writing.

DAILY QUOTE: "Life begins at the end of your comfort zone." - Neale Donald Walsch

FIT TIP - Coffee can improve your cognitive function, increase dopamine levels + stimulate your workout 10-15% longer. Sip a cup before your workout for a java jolt of energy. Bonus, it's happiness in a cup!


  1. Remote start and heated seats in my car. I know this isn't a necessity and it's more of a luxury, but when it's 20 degrees at 4:30 AM, I'm grateful I have that remote start to get my car warmed up before I have to step out in that cold. And then just as grateful that I can turn on the seat warmers and warm up my tush.
  2. The time I get to myself to just focus on me, especially when I don't even have to plan it. I realized being able to just sit in a cafe, drinking coffee and writing my thoughts and emotions, is a really great outlet for me.
  3. My job and the company I work for. We all have days that don't go right, and even days that we don't want to go into work. But being able to work for a company that is employee oriented, as well as customer oriented, it really helps to get through those days easier. I have a great boss, work for a great department, and the company itself I'm grateful for.

Wednesday, January 4, 2017

Daily Insight - Back To The Basics

Tonight I went back to the basics, doing the simple. This is what I did in the beginning of my health and fitness journey and when I was getting my best results. Besides my workouts with my trainers, I would go in either before work or after work and do just basic cardio on the treadmill for anywhere between one to two hours, depending on how much time I had. I would do some intervals in the beginning, but then finished off with just some steady walking.

After I got off work I had some time and so I went to the Jenks studio and I got on the treadmill and did a total of 90 minutes. The first 30 minutes I did a running interval program Michael posted for us, and then the last 60 minutes I just walked. I put Sons of Anarchy on Netflix, watched two episodes, and that 90 minutes went by pretty fast. In that total time I went 5.06 miles and burned 695 calories.

Even though it's only been three days since I got my shit back together, been on track with my meals and getting my cardio in, I can already tell a big difference in how I feel. I don't feel blah, I actually am excited and look forward to my sessions, and I feel motivated and inspired again. Last week when I was reflecting on everything and what I needed to do, I had decided I needed to get back to the basics and do the simple. So regardless if you're just starting your journey, or if you're like me and getting back on track and refocused, just get to the basics. I found myself really overthinking so much that I actually was making it harder than it should be, and I wasn't enjoying it anymore.

Now to my day!  Overall it was great! Had a rough start at work getting two supervisor calls within the first hour because they were mad, but I handled them as usual. But, then today Michael and I made up a session from last week so I was able to get out of the office and workout at lunch. Today was upper body so now my arms and shoulders are as sore as my legs, which that workout from yesterday is really starting to set in. We've got several things at work that don't seem to be going right, but we are getting through it. I was supposed to have choir practice tonight, and planned on going after I did cardio tonight, but when I was leaving FT I noticed I had a headlight out and I knew I needed to get it fixed. I started to get frustrated, but then thought why get upset about it? I figured if I went to choir practice I wouldn't even get home until about 9:00 PM and I wouldn't be able to take it somewhere until after work tomorrow. So I decided I better just take care of it tonight. I knew it was too late to find a place tonight that would be open who could change the bulb out for me, so I just went to the store and bought the bulb I needed for my car and my brother changed it out for me. So, even though my day didn't go as planned and had a few hiccups, I'm at home feeling great about my life. I've been so blessed with an amazing family and friends, and at the end of the day no angry member or burned out headlight can take any of that away from me!

I posted on my personal FB page that in my new journal I wrote about yesterday there is an inspirational quote and a fit tip for each day, and that I'm going to start sharing those in my daily insight blog post along with the things I'm grateful for that day as a closing to my posts. Hope the quotes inspire you all as much as they do me and the fit tips help you in your own health and fitness journey.

DAILY QUOTE: "What you get by achieving your goals is not as important as what you become by achieving your goals." - Zig Ziglar

FIT TIP - AFTER BURN, BABY: High intensity resistance training burns 18% more calories 24 hours post-workout than traditional strength training. Add cardio between sets to boost the burn!


  1. My boss and how she supports me. She isn't just a supportive boss at work and helps me grow in my job, but she supports me in my health and fitness journey. She encourages me to use my lunch for my workouts. She allows me to be flexible on my lunch, if I need to leave a little early or come in a little late, to accommodate a workout as long as I'm getting my time in and getting my work done.
  2. The various support groups I have to share my journey with. I don't just have my trainers and FT family, but I'm lucky enough that I also have my WFC family, friends, family, co-workers, my FB friends/followers, and all the people like you who read my blog. All these people, all these outlets, have people who truly care about me and they encourage me in my journey.
  3. My brother. He's four years older than me, and we've had our differences, we fight and argue, growing up I was the typical spoiled bratty sister, but we both would do anything for each other.

Tuesday, January 3, 2017

Daily Insight - Are We Crazy Or Determined?

FT Run Group (L-R) Christy, myself, and Jennifer
Today was a very long day at work! We found out last Friday about 16,000 of our members cards went out late in the mail and so our phones were ringing off the hook of members wanting to know where their cards were. Most were understanding, but had a few angry ones and as the supervisor I get those calls. Usually they just want to vent to someone who has some type of management title, because once I allow them to vent and say what they have to say and then I proceed to tell them the exact same thing the rep just told them they calm down and are fine by the time the call ends. Just with that alone I had several times I needed to meditate but unfortunately didn't have that much time. So, I made sure to use my lunch break to get away from it all and then I did have a couple moments that I took a few minutes to shut my office door and just close my eyes. And it seemed besides this, we also had one thing after another come up out of my control, so I just dealt with them the best I could as the issues came up. And I also kept in mind, that as chaotic as it was for me my team was feeling it even more because they were getting all the back to back calls. They are a great team!

But, that was work and when I left work at 4:00 I left work there and went to go do some running intervals. And let me tell you, I wasn't smart at all! Totally didn't realize the temps would be 39 degrees and I had on capri workout pants so legs were cold, forgot my gloves and hat, not even my headband that covers my ears. The only thing I did bring was a sweatshirt. And then I wasn't sure if anyone else would show up, I mean it's 39 degrees! But sure enough my two faithful girls, Christy and Jennifer, walked in to join me! But they were smart, they had on long pants, gloves, hats, hoods, jackets, and bundled up. As we start walking to warm-up I'm thinking to myself, this is nuts, but we all three agreed we have goals to meet and we all three are getting back on track and knew we needed this. So we were out there a total of 30 minutes and half way through I thought, either we're crazy or we're determined. Some might say crazy, but I'm going with determined! Now before I get all the comments and lectures on being safe and the cold can be dangerous, just like I get when it's hot. We're all three pretty intelligent, and we know when to push or to back off, but all three of us knew we would be fine continuing our run intervals. It's important to push yourself, but also listen to your body and know when to stop or let up. Today we were all cold, but that was it, and I know the three of us would not have continued if we thought it was dangerous. So, we ended up having a great run! See our picture above? We are smiling! :)

After the run, since I hadn't bought my new workout and food journal for the new quarter, I decided to stop at Walgreens to look for a journal. Typically I just find a journal type book with blank lined pages, usually like a composition book, and each day I write down my meals, workouts, and my core4. Well, I came across this journal and on the front it said "Start Each Day With A Grateful Heart" and I assumed it just had blank lined pages. And I thought, this is perfect, a great quote on the front as a daily reminder for me to be grateful for my life and what I have. But, then I opened it and I got soooooo excited! It's like the perfect journal for me. I had no idea how much it cost because it was in a random spot on the shelf, the only one there like it, and I couldn't find the tag to match it; but it was so perfect I didn't even care how much it cost. I thought to myself, why am I trying to locate the price when I've already decided I'm buying it regardless of what the price is. So I walked up to register, excited for my new journal, and happily paid whatever price rung up. Why is this journal perfect for me and why am I so excited? It has everything I need! I hope you can tell by the pics below what the pages entail and how this was so perfect having everything laid out that I need to keep track of daily.

The center picture (left side of page) has a spot for me to write the three things I'm grateful for today. Then a spot for me to write my goal to live fit for today. And then one thing I appreciate about my strong body. And then I get to rate my day on my workouts, nutrition, and my mood! This part here is a great way to hold accountability for myself. Then it has a fit tip!

The right picture (right side of page) has a motivational quote each day and then blank spaces for me to log my meals and workouts!!!!!

Told you! Perfect journal! I know you're probably thinking I'm crazy because I'm getting so excited about a journal, but for me this has been what has kept me on track while at FT. I have workout and food journals going back about four years and this one has even more tools to help me stay on track and motivated!

Now to end with the three things from my day that were good and that I'm grateful for!

  1. Michael, the owner at FT and one of my trainers. These past couple days he's really helped me get refocused, back on track, and helped me feel better about some things that I've been questioning and even some anxiety about some changes. I'm grateful he's my mentor and for his friendship.
  2. My team at work. They work hard and they do a great job. I know I don't express my appreciation as much as I should, but they all go above and beyond to do the best job possible.
  3. Being able to lead the FT Run Group. It might just be a few of us right now, but I'm grateful Michael allows me to schedule these runs and lead them for myself and for our clients. It helps me stay accountable and it allows me to help others as well.

Monday, January 2, 2017

Daily Insight - Meditating/Journaling

Well, real quick I want to explain what my goal is for my being, which is part of my core4. I'm trying to get back on track and one of the things this past month I've gotten out of doing is meditating and journaling. I notice a huge difference in my mental and emotional being when this happens, and it tends to cause chaos in other areas of my core4 (body, balance, and business). Of course one of the main reasons for meditating and journaling is to work through the rough spots which is necessary, but I want to also make sure at the end of the day I'm reflecting on the things that went right and were good in my day. Because we all know life tries to get the best of us sometimes, and no matter how crappy our day might seem, we can always find the good. And one of the things I really want to do is get back to my blog daily, which is basically online journaling. So, I'll have my journal like I normally do so throughout the day if something triggers me that I need to work through I can start writing all those thoughts and emotions down; but at the end of the day I want to reflect on the positive. And then I want to be able to share that here to not only help me stay on track and motivated, but in hopes that if there is someone who can relate (especially if they are struggling), that it inspires and motivates them to keep going.

So, today overall was a really great day! The only thing that I had that I wasn't looking forward to today was my new year assessment. It was one of those things, because I know this past month my nutrition and cardio have sucked, that part of me wanted to do it but then part of me wanted to remain clueless. But, when I went in this morning, Michael did the assessment and after we weighed and did measurements, he reminded me that I needed to get out of my own head and consider this a fresh start. I can't change the past month, but I can choose how I move forward and I can either be pissed about the weight I've gained this past month or I can choose to be happy, get back on track, and do what I know I'm supposed to do. So, that was my mediation and journaling today and I realized I'm too hard on myself. I know I didn't do what I was supposed to do this past month, but I do know what I need to do to get back on track. So, I'm giving myself permission to let go of what I can't change, allow myself to be happy with what I have accomplished overall, set my new goals and focus on those, and more importantly remember that I'm doing this for me. That everything I'm doing is making me a better person physically, mentally, emotionally, and spiritually.

Also, to explain the inserted picture, I've decided to start taking a picture the first of each month as a way to track my progress from a visual aspect. Many times when I'm working towards a goal I notice a big difference in pictures, which is why I like it when my trainers take pictures. The first of each month I'll take a new picture, and then compare it to the ones before. I'm also making these my profile pictures on social media because I think it'll be a great reminder of my progress when I start to hit those bumps in the road.

Now to end with three things that were good about today.

  1. I got to see Beckett and Marley, and as usual the little things mean so much to both them and me. Like running a lap around the building with Beckett and then listening to Marley tell me all about the play-doh Barbie video she was watching.
  2. Even though I was off work, I had several hours of peace and quiet to myself. This allowed me to create space for myself easily and I binged watch Netflix and just enjoyed relaxing.
  3. I got the rest of my meal prepping done for the week, have my Herbalife supply for my shakes, so now I'm back on track with my nutrition.

Sunday, January 1, 2017

Happy New Year 2017

By the time December rolls around I think the majority of us are all in that mindset, "I'll be glad when this year is over." We start to think of all the things we want to either start doing, do better, or change come January 1st because we see this as a fresh start at a new year.

But, the downfall to that in my own personal opinion, is that allows us to start reflecting on everything that we view as negative or things that aren't good in our lives. Which, isn't a bad thing, because we should reflect on these things some so we do know what we need to change or work on. But the problem that I think a lot of us tend to fall into, and it's what I recently have done, is we stay in that mindset and focus only on what all went wrong this past year and then we just start looking forward to the end of what we are now thinking is a shitty year instead of remembering all the good things that happened and the great accomplishments we have done.

I'll use my own personal example. This past month I really have struggled to stay positive, motivated, and even contemplated leaving Fitness Together where I've been for almost the last 6 years. I had myself convinced that I needed a fresh start, not necessarily in my actual workouts or my nutrition, but in my environment and even working on certain relationships that are very important to me. I thought maybe this would help, but this would be a drastic change and just not sure if I'm ready for that or if it's the right thing. I know there needs to be some changes, and I know leaving FT isn't really the answer, but I just wasn't sure exactly what I needed to do. But, instead of talking to the people I needed to, I just chose not to deal with it which made it worse so then I started the last week of December in that mindset, and just because the past month I've gotten off track, gained some of my weight back, that I just can't wait for this year to end. Fortunately I have a great mentor/friend/trainer in Michael at FT, and he seems to know when he needs to reach out and tells me what I need to hear, so last week we had a quick chat about discussing some changes. We discussed briefly about what those changes will entail, but will discuss more in detail later on. But it was enough for me to know that even though the changes will be outside my comfort zone mentally and emotionally, it will allow me to grow as a person, help me utilize other sources/people to improve in my health and fitness journey, as well as help those important relationships grow and be better. After our chat I immediately felt better, but after a couple days of meditation and journaling I started to realize these changes will be good for me and I actually am looking forward to them.

I realize this last month I've allowed myself to get inside my head, I've allowed my emotions to control me to where I wasn't happy, and even was telling myself this year just needs to end so I can start the new year off strong and get that fresh start I need. So, these past couple days I started to reflect on my year, forgetting about what I feel has been bad, and just looking at what I've done and accomplished. And that's when I realized, not only did I accomplish several small goals, but two major goals in one year! I worked hard for two major goals and I accomplished both of them, including exceeding in my running goal! In the inserted picture you'll see I'm wearing a medal and then I'm in the ring with another girl. I started training in May at a boxing gym to participate in a spar, as well as started training to improve in my running to run in 5K races as well as a 10K race. In regards to my spar, I trained hard for that and I ended up accomplishing that goal. I got in the boxing ring and went three 1-minute rounds with another girl for my first official spar. I had so many emotions, as I was anxious, scared, excited, nervous, but once I was done I was proud of myself. But, my running, that's where I really exceeded in my goal. I had set out to be able to run a 5K without walking. I accomplished that goal the first race in July. I did a couple more 5K races and then ran a 10K race. But, what I didn't think I would do is I decided to start training for a half marathon. And not only did I get through the training, but I completed a half marathon race! I mean, I really never thought I would ever be able to do that, but here I am ending the 2016 year off by saying I've had my first sparring event and I completed a half marathon, as well as several other things that I haven't given myself credit for doing.

So, as I'm getting that fresh start for 2017 I'm looking forward to the changes that will help me be a better person and grow. Not just in my health and fitness journey, but mentally and emotionally, as well as my relationships with others and even myself. Just remember, it's okay to look at the things you don't like; but don't lose yourself in focusing on only the things you want to change or improve on, and remember the things you don't want to change and all the great accomplishments and progress you have made. The one thing I'm going to work on this year is just celebrating my victories, no matter how small or big they might seem, I'm going to celebrate them and give myself credit for my accomplishments.