I am not you. You are not him.

In the fitness world, we are like snowflakes.  No two people trying to lose weight, build muscle, eat healthy are exactly alike.  We have different bodies, different goals, different loves (and hatred) for various forms of exercise and eating.

I love taking walks. I love fun 5k runs (except I walk them).  I’m learning to love lifting.  I love dance fitness DVDs, some of the P90x videos and I now tolerate Brazil Butt Lift about twice a year….for a few days.

I have friends who absolutely do NOT want to weight lift.  For some, they fall under the “I don’t want to look like Arnold” misconception but for many, they just don’t wanna.  I have friends who have to go to the gym and they LOVE to go to the gym.  Some of them can run on the treadmill for an hour.  Some love the different classes.  Some love the weights.

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I have friends who hate any form of cardio.  Some of them love to lift weights, some just don’t exercise at all- in any form.

We are all different and I respect each of my friends, their goals, likes, dislikes and opinions.  I even respect the ones who choose to lead unhealthy lifestyles.  They know how I feel.  If they want to jump on the bandwagon, I’ll pull them along myself.

Our fitness movement is growing every day.  Let’s not allow social media to start a war within ourselves- “they” love to do that.  Look what they’ve done to moms and politics.  Let’s band together, learn to love each other, learn from each other, support each other no matter how we choose to get fit and healthy.

Don’t break down others because they don’t share your opinion.  Share your love, share your passion, share your tips and share your advice.  You might just change someone’s perception.

Making a fitness goal…while eating a taco

Yeah, yeah, yeah, I know.  But it was a chicken taco, homemade.  Ok, Old El Paso homemade but at least it wasn’t Taco Hell which I’m proud to say I haven’t eaten in over a year.  Yuck.

And I only ate one even though I wanted three.  Fortunately my son went back for seconds and ate them all.

I should also confess that I had a slice of pizza for lunch.  Again, I only had one slice where I used to eat two or three.  Everything in moderation!  About an hour later, I really wished I’d had tuna, though.  :/

I started out great this morning.  But that’s pretty much how every day begins.  I had a protein shake, probably not the best one but it beats Coco Puffs and whole milk.  Hey, I’m making changes.  I use Publix vanilla protein powder, Quaker Oats oatmeal and reduced fat Peter Pan crunchy peanut butter (which I bought to make pb&j sandwiches but decided to cut out bread).

Back to my goal.  It’s the same goal I had last year but didn’t come close.  I want to compete in the WBFF (World Beauty Fitness and Fashion show).  My friend, Gina, competed a couple of years ago and won her pro card.  Yes, it would be awesome to win, but my goal is to walk on the stage and not fall on my ass or look stupid.  That’s all I want.

full.jpg  That’s Gina on the right.  Talk about motivation!!!

I know what I have to do.  I know the workouts needed, the coaching I’ll have to get and the foods I will need to eat.  I think I can do it.  There are 113 days until the WBFF comes to Tampa.  Time is running out so I need to put the pizza and tacos down and get busy.

Gina posted a promotional picture for the WBFF a couple of days ago and I liked it.  Today, I went back and commented on it.  I admitted out there for everyone to see that I wanted to do it this year.  About the same time, my friend, Connell, posted a picture of himself at a gym stating that he’s committed to better health.  Having someone who has their pro card believe in me and seeing Connell make his commitment is motivating.  Earlier today, I had a discussion in a group about restless leg syndrome.  A mom told me that once she started exercising regularly, it went away.  That’s motivating. (If you don’t have RLS, consider yourself lucky.  It sucks and is one of the reasons I was induced 2 weeks early with Maggerina Ballerina– shameless plug).

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Getting rid of my “fat” jeans and pants was motivating.  I don’t want to ever need those again.  I’m not fat but I have fat I don’t want anymore. I have a lot of muscle to build.  Like, a LOT a lot. That’s motivating.  I run fitness challenges and need to be a positive roll model for my fitness moms.  That’s motivating.  So here’s my public announcement (again) that I want to compete in the WBFF on July 23rd, 2016 in Tampa.  Feel free to hound me on my Real Fit Mom Facebook page (like and follow!).  I check it throughout the day so I’ll see your comments and messages.  Are you ready?  Let’s go!!

Now go away so I can get my P90x done for today.  🙂

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What are your fitness goal?  What’s your motivation?  

Goals….they are IMPORTANT!

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Sunday was the beginning of another health and fitness challenge on Tampa Bay Moms Group.  After much deliberation among the admins of the group, we decided to stick with the name Relentless but add II.  We also decided to add a brand new challenge group called Tenacious.  Relentless II is geared toward women seeking to fit back into old jeans, reach lower numbers on the scale or lose some inches.  Tenacious is more for women who have already reached their goal but want to maintain their weight, tone or start/need support for strength training.

Our first challenge for Relentless II (other than having the ladies email me their measurements) was to send me their long and short term goals.  What did they want to accomplish at the end of the 60 days?  What changes did they want to see in themselves?  What eating habits were they looking to quit?  I received some really touching goals, some very determined ones and one absolutely hilarious one.

These are 60 day goals, right?

I’m going with fit in a size 14 jeans, maybe 12. That would be nice. My fat belly just ripped out my last good pair of 16’s. Yeah, that really fucking happened. FML…lol

And on the note of my fat belly….I’d like to be able to see my vagina again. This fat bastard keeps getting in the way. You know, I just want to look down and be like “hey old friend. how ya doin?”. Instead I get this bloated, stretch marked bastard interfering.

There. Goals.

Did I win?

Shit. I forgot. I weighed myself last night – yeah, NOT doing that again….and I’m 2 fucking 30, damn.

Ok. I’m done now…lol”

I think everyone needed the laugh and the honesty.

I shared her goals in our private group, anonymously, and another mom commented this:

Oh my gosh, whoever you are I love you! I totally feel that way all the time. Like, I just want to be able to shave my bush without having to do freaking acrobatics and get short of breath. Also, my tits are HUGE! I mean, I’ve always been big. When I wasl like 115 in high school I had a 34D and I’m 5ft so that was pretty big on my frame. Now I don’t even know my real size. I gave up trying to find out its like a GG or EE or FF or something like that. Basically it looks like I have an additional huge ass sitting on my chest. I’d like for that to go down a little at least. Between the boobs and my stomach I really have a hard time seeing anything below.”

This is what these women need.  Pure, unedited, blunt honesty.  Moments like this bond them. They learn that they are not alone in how they feel.  Each of them have different goals but many of them were similar.  I’ll be doing another post about the rest of them as soon as I get permission to use their words.  This group has been amazing so far and it’s only the first week.  I still have room for a few more and hope that some of those from Relentless join us again.

I love running these challenges.  It makes me feel amazing knowing I’m helping these ladies find themselves again and teaching them that they aren’t just wives and moms- they are women, first.

Slacker Fattie is dead. Moment of silence….

Okay, that’s long enough.  I’m not sad.  I am a little disappointed I was never able to find someone to create a cartoon character of her so we could have a proper funeral, though.  Here, we’ll mummify her.

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How do I know she’s dead?

It’s the middle of the day.  I just ate lunch (including a handful of mint M&M’s).  I’m in my workout clothes.  I just wrapped up a blog post and decided to take a “powder my nose” break.  I decided to get on the scale which I NEVER do.  The scale is strictly for the morning, after I powder my nose and before I put clothes on activity.  Today I broke that rule.  I’m impatient and don’t feel like waiting until the morning to write this.  Apparently I’m on a blogging roll thanks to my Relentless Challenge moms.  Anyway, I took my tennis shoes off (no need to add that extra weight) and stepped on the scale.  The numbers 132 flashed at me.

On Halloween I hit 129.6 lbs for the first time in years and have seen it off and on since then.  I’ve stayed under 133 even without working out much but with eating better.  I even allowed alcohol back into my diet a bit.  So with not exercising regularly, allowing myself alcohol on occasion, having pumpkin pie, apple pie (at Thanksgiving, not all the time) and even eating some pizza now and again, I am still under 133.

I’m officially declaring Slacker Fattie dead.  There will be no tears.  There will be no ceremony or organ music playing.  She’s kicked to the curb.

Now I know life can toss some curve balls.  I’m perfectly aware that she could tear through the gauze, push off the heavy sarcophagus lid and dig through six feet of healthy food and workouts and haunt my progress.

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But she’s been gone for over three months- once the 130’s reappeared on the scale.  That’s a long time for her to be gone.  I’m comfortable calling the time of death- Fall of 2015- and notifying the family- Fit Bitch shed a single tear.  So, goodbye Slacker Fattie.  You are dead, gone and buried.  I won’t miss you.

You CAN do it with small changes

This morning I was chatting with one of my fitness moms through Messenger.  I was popping back and forth between her and Facebook when a before and after picture of a mom in a large group I’m in showed in my Newsfeed.  I saved the picture, took a screen shot of what she ate to lose 70 pounds and send it to her.  She was amazed but said she’d never be able to do a diet like that.  I’m assuming the mom who lost the 70 pounds is from Australia since I just discovered, after meeting an Aussie, that they eat kangaroo.

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I’d just eaten some oatmeal and had a glass of water while we were messaging.  Her comment made me think back to when I started my journey to becoming fit six years ago.  I remember telling my trainer, Douglas, that I would never give up my whole milk, sugar cereal, soda, fast food, pizza, chips and queso and alcohol.  I hated the meal plan he made for me along with most of the foods on it.  I gagged when I tried to eat oatmeal and turned my nose up at brussel sprouts and buffalo meat.  I swore I’d never like sweet potatoes.

I realized this morning how many changes I have made that I never thought I would.  I grew up on whole milk, McDonald’s, Pizza Hut, soda and snacks.  No one in our family was or is obese (although my dad has always had a big belly).  It was simply how my generation was raised.  I look back at the long path I’ve taken.  I never had to worry about what I ate (or drank) until I had my 5th baby at 33. This is when Slacker Fattie made her appearance.  I worked out at 28 before I got pregnant with #4 because I wanted to.  I enjoyed it.  But since then, it’s been a chore.  98% of the time I have an “I don’t wanna” attitude- just like going back to school that I talked about in my last post.  Apparently I need to work on that.

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Making changes is a long path.  I made little steps along the way.  I took it one board at a time.  Eventually I did stop eating milk and cereal every morning.  I learned to put oatmeal in smoothies and take the time to make eggs in the morning.  I’ve been able to let go of pasta and bread, although I still have bread a couple of times a week to avoid the “gluten withdrawal.”  I rarely have fast food and when I do, I try to get a salad.  I’ve even started switching from ‘crispy’ to ‘grilled’ chicken.  I used to get a sausage, egg and cheese bagel, no breakfast sauce from McDonald’s.  On my way to class, if I’m hungry, I’ll drive through and get a parfait which I discovered I loved.  I used to eat 3-4 slices of pizza when Hubby orders it at 11 PM and now I can handle only eating one, maybe two slices.  I’ve learned to love brussel sprouts, asparagus, oatmeal and even plain sweet potatoes.  I’ve learned to meal prep and try to eat 5 small meals a day instead of 3 large ones.  I switched from buying soda for the house to just having it when we eat out.  Eventually, even while out I’ll order water.  Now, many times when I have soda, I don’t like it.

Several weeks ago I cut out soda, fast food, junk food, pizza and alcohol (yes, my beloved cocktails) for 2 weeks.  I didn’t exercise very much.  I lost 10 pounds in those 2 weeks.  I need to mention that I was going through a couple of personal issues and instead of having that urge to emotional eat, I wasn’t hungry.  I wasn’t eating much which also contributed to my weight loss.  However, since then, I’ve kept the weight off.  Fit Bitch has the food thing under control.  The next step is embracing the exercise!

It’s been a process, a journey.  I don’t miss the way I used to eat.  If I have a craving, I satisfy it.  I can eat a bite of a cookie and be happy instead of having a plateful.  I showed myself that I can make small, gradual changes and give up the bad habits I had for years.  It can be done if you want to do it.  Just make sure they are small and gradual changes.  Cutting out everything at once generally leads to failure.

If you want it bad enough, you’ll make it happen.

 

Shoulda, coulda, woulda. STOP!

It’s 1:30 in the morning.  I just found out that I didn’t get an A in Philosophy.  When I signed up for the class I was nervous about passing it.  I just wanted a C.  But once I got going, it wasn’t as hard as I thought it was going to be.  I got an A or B on every test and paper.  I had an A all semester long.  I even got an A- on the first college paper I’ve written in over 10 years.  Grades just came out and I got an 89.5%.  5% away from an A.  I cried.

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I know it’s dumb.  I could have not stressed, gotten an 80% and it still would have been a B.  My daughter said, “But you know in your mind that you were 5% away from an A.”  Well, yes, but on my transcripts, it just says “B.”  We took the class together and she was happy with her B.

I cried.  I laid there upset with myself.  If I’d started studying sooner.  If I hadn’t missed that one study question that was worth 5 points.  If I hadn’t gone to Melanie’s office party even though we studied on the way there, only stayed 30 minutes, studied on the way home, dropped the kids off then arrived at school two hours early to study.  If I’d looked up the answer to the one question I somehow didn’t make a flashcard for while other students trickled in and chit chatted. If only, coulda, shoulda, woulda.

STOP!

I had a mini meltdown last week and my husband said, “We can’t change the past.  I think we’ve both learned that.”  I laughed because it’s usually me that says that.  I’m always the one living in the moment because I feel it’s a waste of time to worry about things we can’t change.

So I dried my tears and grabbed my laptop to write down my thoughts.  I made a lot of mistakes in college when I first left home at 19.  I wasn’t ready to grow up like most kids that age.  I went back a few times over the years, pregnant, with kids, between kids but usually had the attitude of “I don’t wanna go!”  It wasn’t until my 2nd oldest graduated high school that I finally felt ready to go.  She chose to stay home and go to our local community college and I thought I might as well join her.  I was finally ready to grow up- as far as school goes anyway.  This is my first semester and I took two classes to ease into things.  I got an A in my math prep class that doesn’t even count.  But I got an A!  Then a stupid B in the class that DOES count.  But, I passed.  I’m choosing to focus on that….now.

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We have the choice to worry, to fret, to be angry, to be miserable when the weather is bad, if something didn’t go our way, if someone said something we don’t like. A lot of people choose to live this way. They hold onto the past, worry about things they can do nothing about, are just plain negative. That’s a choice.*

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I once had a psychologist ask me how I felt.  I told her that so and so made me angry when they said such and such.  She said, “They didn’t make me feel angry.  I chose to be angry.”  That really pissed me off.  I expected her to be on my side.  But as I’ve gotten older I realized she was right.  And I tell this same lesson to my kids when they yell, “She/he made me mad!”  We have the choice to let things go, to see the positive, to be patient, to see the light shine through the clouds.

I had a bad food/fitness weekend because Hubby was out of town so the kids and I had movie time with waffles, popcorn, ice cream and soda.  When my fitness moms have a bad day I always tell them that tomorrow is a new day.  I need to remember that as well.  I know I was only 5% away from an A and I’m extremely proud of myself.  I know I ate junk all weekend but tomorrow I’m back to eating cleaner.  I refuse to waste time wallowing in misery about things I can’t change.  It’s a lesson my mom taught me even though she’s a huge worry wart and has a hard time letting go.  She tries hard to live in the here and now and has raised me to do the same.

You have the choice.  Make it and live it.

**Some people, due to issues out of their control, cannot always make the choice to be positive and happy.  If you struggle with this I encourage you to talk with someone- a family member, friend or professional.  If you are in the Tampa Bay area I highly suggest Life Focus Group of Tampa. Dr. Gina is a good friend of mine with a superb staff.**

That one comment makes it all worth it

I spend a lot of time on the fitness challenges that I run for moms on Tampa Bay Moms Group.  With each one, I spend more time since they are getting bigger and bigger.  A lot of time…..like a lot, a lot.

I don’t get paid to work for the website.  It’s been a labor of love ever since my friend, Steffany, and I started it four years ago.  I don’t get paid to run the fitness challenges.  I’ve spent some of my own money to mail prizes and this last time I bought ten journals for the first moms who signed up.

There are many times that I don’t get a workout in for myself because I spend so much time making sure everyone else is making good food choices, getting their workouts in, helping them with their struggles and keeping them involved.

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I didn’t say all that to toot my own horn.  Just the opposite.  The women who have joined my challenges and especially the ones who are involved in Relentless right now have been phenomenal.  Yes some of them quit.  Yes some of them have really bad days and weeks.  Yes some of them get crabby when they want cake.  But many of them keep coming back for more.  They don’t care about the prizes they win (although I know they enjoy them).  They care about themselves.  They want to make themselves healthier.  They want to live longer for their children, to be positive role models.  Some of them have even gotten their husbands to make better choices as well.

This afternoon I sat down and made a list of the accomplishments and changes that the moms have made during the last two weeks.  I posted them on TBMG then shared the link in our Relentless Facebook group.  Normally I ask them to please comment but I was so glad to get the post done that I forgot.  I was so surprised when I checked back on the website later and saw that there were three comments.  Reading them I got goosebumps and tears in my eyes.  Comments like they left, hearing them tell me they are working out with their kids, knowing husbands are joining, seeing them brush off a bad day and beam when they have a good one, make every second I spend on the challenges worth it.  I love these women.  They cheer each other on, check on each other, share and encourage.  It’s extremely humbling knowing I created that.  I don’t look for pats on the back or recognition for the challenges…although one of those massages would be nice!  It’s enough for me to see happy, healthy mommies.

I can’t wait to see how much they grow in the future!!

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