Virtual Training Options (3/29 to 4/4)

Monday, March 30th at 530am on ZOOM Small Group (Strength & Conditioning w/ Sally) ZOOM LINK:  https://zoom.us/j/689086386

Monday, March 30th at 630am on Facebook Live and ZOOM Small Group (Strength & Conditioning w/Brad) ZOOM LINK: https://zoom.us/j/609880615

Monday, March 30th at 7:00am on ZOOM Small Group (Strength & Conditioning w/Steph) ZOOM Link: https://zoom.us/j/681686638

Monday, March 30th at 7:30am on Facebook Live (Strength and Condition w/Andrew )

Monday, March 30th at 800am on ZOOM (Strength and Conditioning w/Steph) ZOOM LINK: https://zoom.us/j/856830047

Monday, March 30th at 8:00am on Facebook Live (Strength and Conditioning w/Isaiah)

Monday, March 30th at 8:30am on ZOOM (Strength and Conditioning w/AJ) ZOOM LINK: https://zoom.us/j/939834470 

Monday, March 30th at 830am on ZOOM (Strength and Conditioning w/Andrew) ZOOM LINK: https://zoom.us/j/614884327

Monday, March 30th at 915am on ZOOM (Strength and Conditioning w/Jori) ZOOM LINK: https://zoom.us/j/677672780

Monday, March 30th at 945am on ZOOM Strength and Conditioning w/AJ) ZOOM Link: https://zoom.us/j/103651879

Monday, March 30th at 1130am on Facebook Live and ZOOM (Strength and Conditioning w/Jared) ZOOM LINK: https://zoom.us/j/543706861

Monday, March 30th at 530pm on ZOOM (Strength & Conditioning w/Brad) ZOOM LINK: https://zoom.us/j/261145616

Monday, March 30th at 630pm on Facebook Live (Cooking with Coach Amanda)

Tuesday, March 31st at 530am on ZOOM (Strength and Conditioning w/Jared) ZOOM: https://zoom.us/j/325135608

Tuesday, March 31st at 6:30am on Facebook Live and ZOOM (Strength and Conditioning w/ Brad) ZOOM LINK: https://zoom.us/j/609880615

Tuesday, March 31st at 7:00am on ZOOM (Strength and Conditioning w/Jared) ZOOM LINK: https://zoom.us/j/184231342

Tuesday, March 31st at 7:30am on ZOOM (Strength and Conditioning w/Andrew) ZOOM LINK: https://zoom.us/j/828603477

Tuesday, March 31st at 800am on ZOOM (Strength & Conditioning w/AJ) ZOOM LINK: https://zoom.us/j/576178055

Tuesday, March 31st at 830am on ZOOM (Strength and Conditioning w/Andrew) ZOOM LINK: https://zoom.us/j/813724469

Tuesday, March 31st at 915am on ZOOM (Strength and Conditioning w/ AJ) ZOOM LINK: https://zoom.us/j/783643302

Tuesday, March 31st at 945am on Facebook Live and ZOOM (Strength and Conditioning w/Jared) ZOOM: https://zoom.us/j/365258772

Tuesday, March 31st at 1130am on ZOOM (Strength and Conditioning w/Steph) https://zoom.us/j/808051317

Tuesday, March 31st at 415pm on Facebook Live (Strength and Conditioning w/Jori)

Tuesday March 31st at 530pm on Facebook Live (Passive Stretch Therapy w/Brad)

Tuesday, March 31st at 630pm on Facebook Live (Cooking with Coach Amanda)

Wednesday, April 1st at 630am on ZOOM & Facebook Live (Strength and Conditioning w/Brad ZOOM LINK: https://zoom.us/j/261145616

Wednesday, April 1st at 700am ZOOM (Strength and Conditioning w/ Steph) ZOOM Link: https://zoom.us/j/168040704

Wednesday, April 1st at 730am on ZOOM (“Strength and Conditioning w/ Andrew) ZOOM LINK:

Wednesday, April 1st at 800am on ZOOM (“Strength and Conditioning w/Steph) ZOOM LINK: https://zoom.us/j/168040704

Wednesday, April 1st at 830am on ZOOM (Strength and Conditioning w/AJ) ZOOM LINK: https://zoom.us/j/214178299

Wednesday, April 1st at 830am on ZOOM (Strength and Conditioning w/Andrew) ZOOM LINK: https://zoom.us/j/311704073

Wednesday, April 1st at 915a on ZOOM Small Group (Strength and Conditioning w/ Jori) ZOOM LINK: https://zoom.us/j/366896275

Wednesday, April 1st at 945am on ZOOM (Strength and Conditioning w/Sally) ZOOM LINK:  https://zoom.us/j/444874393

Wednesday, April 1st at 11:30am on Facebook Live and ZOOM (Strength and Conditioning w/Jared) ZOOM: https://zoom.us/j/543056019

Wednesday, April 1st at 415pm on Facebook Live (Foam Rolling w/Isaiah)

Thursday, April 2nd at 530am on ZOOM (Strength and Conditioning w/Jared) ZOOM LINK:  https://zoom.us/j/325135608

Thursday, April 2nd at 700a on ZOOM (Strength and Conditioning w/Jared) ZOOM LINK:  
https://zoom.us/j/184231342

Thursday, April 2nd at 730am on ZOOM (Strength and Conditioning w/Andrew) ZOOM LINK: https://zoom.us/j/349430704

Thursday, April 2nd at 800am on ZOOM (Strength and Conditioning w/AJ ZOOM LINK: https://zoom.us/j/605124993

Thursday, April 2nd at 830am on ZOOM (Strength and Conditioning w/Andrew) ZOOM LINK: https://zoom.us/j/539216374

Thursday, April 2nd at 915am on Facebook Live (Strength and Conditioning w/AJ)

Thursday, April 2nd at 945a on Facebook Live (Strength and Conditioning w/Isaiah)

Thursday, April 2nd at 1130am on Facebook Live (Strength and Conditioning w/Steph)

Thursday April 2nd at 415pm on Facebook Live (Strength and Conditioning w/Jori)

Thursday, April 2nd at 530pm on ZOOM (Strength and Conditioning w/Sally) https://zoom.us/j/550336053

Thursday April 2nd at 630pm on Facebook Live (Cooking with Coach Amanda)

Friday, April 3rd at 630am on ZOOM Small Group and Facebook Live (Strength Only w/ Brad) ZOOM LINK: https://zoom.us/j/316186334

Friday, April 3rd at 700am on Facebook Live (Fun Friday” w/ Steph)

Friday, April 3rd at 700am on ZOOM (Fun Friday Games! w/Jori) ZOOM LINK: https://zoom.us/j/447389497

Friday, April 3rd at 730am on ZOOM (Strength and Conditioning w/Andrew) ZOOM LINK: https://zoom.us/j/223178348

Friday, April 3rd at 800am ZOOM Small Group (Strength and Conditioning w/Steph) ZOOM LINK: https://zoom.us/j/313708050

Friday, April 3rd at 8:30am on ZOOM (Fun Friday Full Body w/AJ) ZOOM LINK: https://zoom.us/j/307450664

Friday, April 3rd at 915am on ZOOM (Fun Friday Games w/Jori) ZOOM LINK: https://zoom.us/j/401994393

Friday, April 3rd at 915am on ZOOM (Fun Friday w/Andrew) ZOOM LINK: https://zoom.us/j/887762581

Friday, April 3rd at 945am on Facebook Live (Passive Stretch Therapy w/Brad)

Friday, April 3rd at 1130am on Facebook Live (Family Fitness w/Jared)

Friday, April 3rd at 415pm on ZOOM (Fun Friday w/Sally) ZOOM LINK: https://zoom.us/j/487869179

Saturday, April 4th at 800am on Facebook Live (Yoga w/ Isaiah)

Saturday, April 4th at 915am on Facebook Live (Saturday Surprise with Isaiah)

Football & Fitness

I have always loved competing in athletics. It doesn’t matter the sport or activity, I’m in! There is something about the challenge that lies ahead and the opportunity to become the victor that simply just gets me going. Growing up with a single mother who was a teacher, any day off I had from school was spent with my mom in her classroom watching her teach. After high school, I realized coaching in some capacity was what I needed to do with my life; it allowed me to be competitive and instruct. Two qualities that I needed to utilize in whatever I chose to do with my life. 

Before joining the BCS Fitness family, I spent my time coaching high school and middle school students in a variety of sports from football, baseball, track and field, and basketball. However it was the game of football that captured my passion. I was blessed to work with amazing coaches and players, and I carry the lessons that they have taught with me today. I thought it would be a good idea to share some of those lessons with you!

  1. It’s always about the people: I had a mentor of mine tell me “The day my intentions shift away from our boys, is the day I am done with coaching!” Whether we are on the field or in the gym, it is the PEOPLE that get us up every morning! I think I can speak for every staff member at BCS Fitness when I say we truly love to see you achieve your goals! When you walk in the doors of the gym, you have people in your groups that you GRIND with and work hard with. You are walking step by step in your fitness journey with some amazing people, and that is a tremendous blessing!
  2. It takes no talent to be prepared: This one might be my favorite. In football, if a team is not fully prepared, it shows! This is something that you cannot escape. As an offensive coordinator, my days (and nights) were consumed with film, practice schedules, and play call sheets.. And then more film! The same can be said for you and your workouts. Without the proper nutrition, hydration, and sleep the machine we call our body will not function the way you need it to! You work way too hard in and out of the gym to not properly fuel your body!
  3. Effort is between you and you: The beautiful thing about football is that there  are more variables that are out of your control than are. Effort and attitude however, are completely up to you! As a coach, effort and attitude are VITAL in creating a winning culture; but I can’t do it for you! When people in your group think about you, are you known for giving everything you got and bringing a positive attitude no matter the task? A positive attitude and work ethic are contagious and everyone around you feeds off of it!

Football is a tremendous parallel to life and I can say first hand the coaches I have had in the past have shaped me into who I am today. Because of what my coaches meant to me, I feel called to pass those lessons along to as many people as I can; on the field or in the gym. Let’s continue to strive to be our best!

The Five S’s by Coach Jared MacDonald

Five S’s

We spend a lot of time and energy talking about and focusing on our “Why”. This is important, as your “Why” gives  reason and purpose to your effort. One popular and successful strategy for finding your true “Why” is known as the “5 Whys”. It is a fantastic way to drill down to deeper meaning and purpose. You simply ask “why?” each time you answer a question. Why do you want to lose 15lbs? To feel better about myself. Why do you want to feel better about yourself? Etc. This may seem simple on the surface, but usually by the fifth “Why” you find a deep and burning desire for something that is not superficial. But what do you do when you find true North and you don’t see a visible path? Have you ever been on a hike and lost the trail? Trying to find a house or business in an unfamiliar town? That feeling of being utterly lost can be overwhelming, causing paralysis before you even set out on the journey. Or you could be on your way, following the path and then come upon an immovable and unavoidable obstacle. Precision Nutrition recently had a great infographic that I think can help a lot of us once we find our “Why” and the know the destination but are unsure of the path. This is how you build the compass, trail map, road to your destination of deep sustainable change. Again, this may seem simple on the surface. And singularly they are simple (and that is great news, simple is doable) but combined they are powerful.

  1. Simple (told you so): Ask yourself. On a scale of 1-10 how confident am I that I can do this everyday for 2 weeks. 10 being no problem, 1 being as likely as winning the lottery. Aim for 8+.
  1. Segmental: Break bigger things down into their component parts. Seems simple and trivial. It’s neither. Critical and difficult to do without practice. 
  1. Sequential: Start with “Thing 1”, then do “Thing 2”, then “Thing 3” and so on. Don’t about a problem that isn’t actually holding you back yet. Earn that problem by eliminating the immediate problem.
  1. Strategic: Leverage your strengths to address the thing that’s immediately in your way. Don’t focus on what you can’t or haven’t done, focus on what has worked and how that can be employed now.
  1. Supported: Include teaching, coaching, mentorship, and accountability.

*Quick note here: If you are a client at BCS Fitness #5 is the thing we strive the most to provide to you. Take advantage of your coaches, workout partners, structure of the schedule. There is an enormous wealth of support, knowledge, experience, and support available to you, but you have to access it.

**Second note. If you are not a client of BCS Fitness and are looking for coaching, support, accountability we would love to meet with you and discuss your goals and how we can help you achieve your lifestyle and fitness desires.

Cruel Intentions by Coach Jared MacDonald

Cruel Intentions

Coach AJ giving client Erin P a little BONUS.

One of the defining young adult movies of the late 90’s, Cruel Intentions starred Reese Witherspoon and Ryan Phillipe. Why is my fitness coach writing about a dark, emotional 90’s teen movie? We will get to that, first this is not a recommendation to see the movie.

If you haven’t, just don’t. For our interaction all you really need to know is that Ryan Phillipe’s character is a brooding, negative, emotional sociopath that sets his sights on a navie but generally joyful, happy, and young lady going somewhere in Reese Witherspoon.

Spoiler Alert! Reese ultimately prevails, but she goes through unnecessary heartache and difficulty beforehand.

Now, what does this have to do with fitness and wellness? Well, it comes down to intentions. We talk about “What is you Why”, which is a powerful tool to keep you progressing and focused long term towards ultimate desires and goals and useful for getting back on track. Intentions can be used in the moment, for short term efforts. The short term becomes the long term. When you come to the gym for a workout what are your intentions? Most of us would say, “we want to put forth effort, strain our bodies, sweat and work hard”, before we arrive for our workout. What happens to those intentions once the struggle is real? Do you stay positive and focus? I don’t mean fake smiles and pretend it’s easy. I mean, accept that it’s difficult, find conviction to push through and celebrate your effort! It is all too easy to become Ryan Phillipe and look for shortcuts, blame circumstances, sabotaging your mindset and positive intentions. Be like Reese. Accept what is. Face the difficulty and rise above. Below are some helpful suggestions to frame positive intentions and keep them when the work is difficult.

Have a positive mindset: Get your mind right. The warmup is the perfect time for this. The warmup is generally easy and allows you to prepare both mentally and physically for the work to come. Commit to working hard!
Look for mini goals: It is awesome to have big goals and keep chasing them, but it can be easy to become negative and defeated when that goal seems far off in the distance. When I run, which lets just say isn’t my favorite but I’m working on that, I focus on short term distances. Run to the next light pole, hold my pace, run a slightly faster mile. Anything to keep my mind on achieving instead of quitting. You might look to lift slightly more weight on a specific exercise, finish a calorie goal a little quicker, jump a little higher, etc.
Avoid negative talk: This can be both verbal and mental. It is perfectly ok to admit something is challenging or difficult and obviously if something causes pain you should speak up. BUT, words like “this sucks”, “I hate this”, “This is stupid” do nothing positive and make the work even more difficult. Better to put that effort into pushing through than complaining and falling short. Quick jokes and self deprecation are tools I use to reset mid workout.
Celebrate: This goes hand in hand with number 3. Once you find conviction and push through something difficult. Celebrate your effort. Let out a scream, high five a friend or coach, positive energy is infectious! Unfortunately, so is negative :(.

Reflect: After a difficult workout, take some time while you recover and stretch to think about your effort. Did you give great effort? Awesome enjoy the satisfaction and endorphins. If you feel like you could have given more to a workout or exercise commit to giving more next time and move on.

“Intention is one with cause and effect. Intention determines outcome. And if you’re stuck and not moving forward, you have to check the thought and the action that created the circumstance.”- Oprah

“Awakened doing is when you don’t create suffering anymore for others—–or for yourself—-by your own actions. It also implies that your primary intention, the focus of your attention, is on the “doing” in the present moment, rather than the result that you want to achieve through it.” – Eckhart Tolle

The mind is key to success on this journey, and any in journey in life. We will never be perfect but we can chase it with positive intention and effort. Cruel intentions will never succeed in the long term!

Real Talk by Coach Jared MacDonals

Real Talk

Beach body in 30 days! 

Shredded abs in only 8 minutes!

 6 weeks to 15lbs of pure muscle!

 Unfortunately the fitness industry is full of misleading, misguided, and sometimes outright untruthful promises designed to prey upon people’s desire to improve their health and fitness. 

 We are nearing the end of the first month of the new year and passing the half-way point of our Biggest Winner Challenge. I wanted to discuss what real and sustainable change looks like and what is required to see that rate of change.

 I know that a lot of you have put in hard work and things started off great, you probably lost some weight, gained some muscle, but now you may be hitting a plateau. It is easy to become frustrated when the rate of change slows down or stalls. I would encourage you to stay focused and stay the course. Perseverance is what separates those who ultimately succeed and those that fall off the wagon only to start over from the beginning in the future.

 Fitness, like most things in life, is not linear. It ebbs and flows. Persevere and you will succeed, it just might not be as quick or as straight a path as you had hoped.

 My personal weight loss journey was a (wicked) twisted road. First I was 30 years old, father to 2 young daughters and I weighed 200lbs and had lower back issues. I had always struggled to gain weight as a young athlete so this was completely new territory. I decided to change. I got back in the gym, did the same workouts from my youth. I gained muscle mass, but the weight did not budge. 

After 6 months I came to the realization that my workouts and diet needed an overhaul. I did a little research and committed to an aggressive program. I’ll spare the details, but the first 2 weeks were awful and unsustainable. Once I found a balance and moderated my approach I was able to feel great while losing weight. The weight did not come off in a linear fashion. It was like a stair step. 200 to 192. Stall. 192 to 187. Stall. Eventually, 9 months or so later I was down to 175, what I weighed when I graduated high school. I share this to let you know I have been there. I know what that struggle feels like, and it is what led to me becoming a fitness coach. 

Below are statistics from our friends at Precision Nutrition and their research from over 100,000 clients. You’ll see  rates of change for weight loss and muscle gain and what it takes to maintain that rate of change. Hopefully this will give you perspective and the ability to stay the course!

Realistic rates of fat loss per week:

Progress % Body Weight Men Women Requirement

Extreme 1-1.5% 2-3lb 1.65-2.5lb 90-100% Consistency

Reasonable 0.5-1% 1-2lb 0.8-1.65lb 70-85% Consistency

Comfortable <0.5% <1lb <0.8lb 50-65% Consistency

Realistic rates of muscle gain per month:

Fitness level Men Women

Beginner 1.5-2.5lb 0.65-1lb

Intermediate .75-1.25lb .325-.5lb

Advanced .375-.625lb .1625-.25lb

Again, these are trend lines and not linear progressions. Gender, age, fitness level, health factors and host of other variables will affect your personal rate of change. The biggest take away that I see from this research is that you do not have to be perfect or anywhere near it to see a sustainable rate of change over the long term. If you can be consistent 70-85% of the time you will see tremendous progress! 

“Perseverance is stubbornness with a purpose”- Josh Shipp

“Stay the course. When thwarted try again: harder: smarter. Persevere relentlessly.”- John Wooden

This Is How You Determine Success

I’ve got a throwback for you – and one that you’re going to love.

It is all about SELF-EFFICACY, which is basically your success barometer. It’s a trait that can predict how successful you will be!

What makes it even more awesome is that you can build and develop it in a short period of time. It’s almost like a superpower.

Self-efficacy is basically a fancy term for what happens in the children’s story, “The Little Engine That Could.” 

Do you remember it? 

It’s about a train that had to climb a big hill … and at first it wasn’t so sure it was possible. 

It chanted, “I think I can, I think I can,” … which turned into “I know I can, I know I can,” … and eventually it pulled itself to the top of the hill.

Self-efficacy – the engine’s belief in itself that it could do hard things – is what powered that train up the mountain!

In a nutshell, self-efficacy is like self-confidence at the next level. 

It’s the KNOWING that you can count on yourself when the chips are down … and that you can and will do your best whenever possible.

When you challenge yourself and push yourself out of your comfort zone, your self-efficacy meter goes up. 

We teach it to kids, but it falls by the wayside as we get older. 

There can be so many reasons we stop flexing our “self-efficacy muscles” … time, expectations (from others and from ourselves), disappointments, and even fear!

Over time, this can have a profound impact on your life, making it so you don’t even consider trying new things. We give up before we even start!

This is where the “comfort zone” comes in … and over time, that comfort zone can get smaller and smaller (and not very comfortable at all)!

So how do you work on building your self-efficacy? 

You do something that makes you uncomfortable.

It doesn’t mean going bungee jumping or signing up for a marathon. 

It can be as simple (and as powerful) as deciding you are going to stick with a program for a month …

… and then following through with it, NO MATTER WHAT.

Even on days you don’t want to. Even if you’re tired or busy.

Especially when you’re tired and busy. 

There is a huge payoff in all of this. 

You realize everything you’re capable of!

In the words of writer A.A. Milne in Winnie The Pooh, you learn:

“You are braver than you believe, stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think.”  –– Christopher Robin.

I KNOW you can do whatever you put your mind to. But do YOU know it? 

All you have to do is decide … and then just do it!  

You’ve got this…let’s get to work!

The Truth About the Process of Becoming Fit

Many of you are training with the goal of 2020 being a new year and new you. FIrst, we applaud your decision and effort to improve your health and fitness, it’s not easy and can be intimidating. We are hopeful that you enjoyed your experience whether it was your first time inside a gym or you are returning after a season away from exercise. We also love seeing our current clients returning from the holiday season and the gym being full of energy again!

I wanted to talk to all of you that are looking for improved fitness. Fitness is a process, and that process looks different for each individual , but there are some truths for everyone. It does not matter what your specific goal is: weight loss, fat loss, muscle gain, improved conditioning and cardiovascular strength, etc. All of them are a process and take time to achieve.

The number one factor in your success is consistency. When we are full of motivation and great intentions there is a tendency to rush that process. Folks new to exercise want to go all out and workout as hard they can as much as they can to speed that process up. While this is a great intention, it has drawbacks and those drawbacks can derail your efforts before you have a chance to see change. I have made this mistake numerous times, even to the point where my arms were so sore I could hardly brush my teeth! Not fun!

If you are new or returning to exercise from a long layoff, your body doesn’t need the same amount of stimulus as someone who has been consistently training for weeks, months, or years to affect change. If you have been working out and have hit a plateau, more is not always the answer either. You may need to evaluate your sleep habits, nutrition, or recovery protocols to ensure you are reaping the reward of your hard work. Strength training and conditioning do not actually build our bodies up, in fact they tear them down. We see improvement from that exercise through recovery and improved strength via new muscle growth or a stronger cardiovascular system from the strain of conditioning. If you neglect your recovery: SLEEP, stretching, foam rolling, low intensity steady state movement on off days (walking, hiking, biking, stair stepper, etc.), nutrition, etc. You will eventually burn out or become injured. The most important recovery protocol is SLEEP. Deep Sleep, usually 1-2 hours a night is where the body repairs itself.

Exercising regularly and failing to get quality sleep is akin to putting money into a bank account with a negative interest rate. You end up going backwards. Below are some tips to make sure you are maximizing return on investment.

“Do your job, trust the process” Nick Saban
Basically, do everything within your control to make sure you are making your workouts. Schedule a makeup, ask for an outside the gym the workout you can do to keep your routine. We are here to help!
Aim for 7-9 hours of sleep.
Prioritizing sleep over social functions, tv binging, or other fun activities isn’t an attractive decision. Don’t rely on will power. Set a schedule and stick to it. Naps are a great way to get in some missed sleep. 20-30 minutes will go a long way toward your recovery efforts.
Aim for 30/60 minute of low intensity exercise/movement on days you do not train at the gym.
You will increase blood flow to sore muscles and fascia, build a routine of movement and improve recovery efforts.
Ensure you are replenishing your body with quality nutrition.
Focus on whole, minimally processed sources of high quality fats, carbohydrates and protein. Eat slow and stop when you are satisfied, not stuffed. Don’t restrict your body with too few calories. Your body needs nutrition for repair.
Water
Keep a bottle handy and drink whenever you are thirsty. Try to drink water throughout the day. Muscles are predominantly water and water helps deliver nutrition and eliminate waste products that build up during exercise.

“We do not rise to our goals, we fall to our systems” James Clear Atomic Habits
Have a system and follow it, refine as needed.

“Rome wasn’t built in day, but they laid bricks daily” John Heywood
Lay your bricks, and then rest. Rinse, repeat. Progress will follow!

How Your Excuses Become Your Setbacks by Coach Jeanne Larson

Motivation

Excuses? Feeling unmotivated? Too tired to keep your fitness routine in check? You are not alone! How easy is it to lose your fitness motivation when you had FULL intentions to stick with your plan? It’s VERY easy to lose that motivation. In fact, if it makes you feel any better, it is a common thought process by many, but it does not have to be your normal. Diving into a fitness and nutrition plan requires motivation… each and every single day. But to some, this is easier said than done. What you need are strategies to keep the momentum going and your motivation strong so you can fulfill the commitment you started.

To begin with, acknowledge your bad habits and start letting go of them. You don’t have to change everything at once. Start with the smallest and most annoying habit that prevents you from staying motivated. For instance, if you find your negative self-talk a thorn in your side, then knock it off! There’s enough discouragement out in the world, and YOU don’t have to contribute to that negativity. Start replacing your negative self-talk with positive affirmation on things like: how far you’ve come, the fact that you show up for your workouts even when you didn’t want to, and speak encouragement to your own heart that YOU CAN and WILL do this. Throw the negativity out the window and get a fresh perspective that empowers you that you CAN stick to your game plan like it’s nobody’s business, except yours!

Bad habits can also come in the form of daily self-comparison. I’m sorry to tell you, but if you continue to compare yourself with others, you will undoubtedly come up on the lower end of the stick every time. There will always be someone stronger, fitter, and leaner than you. It’s the world’s standards, and it shouldn’t be yours. Social media capitalizes on it and puts the best images forward, with no other words to build you up except “stay tuned for more.” That’s just not going to cut it. Nope. You see, the reality of what you see on social media is just NOT reality of real life. The editing, the primping, the make-overs, the tucks and the angles of photos will always look the very best. If we keep our eyes focused on what the world sees and wants, we will never measure up! Life is too short to live up to these standards. We are all made uniquely, having our own bodies, shapes, and sizes that it is futile to compare with anyone else on the planet. A great quote says, “Every minute you spend wishing you had someone else’s life is a minute spent wasting yours.” Drop the pointless habit of comparison. It wastes time and energy where you can be spending that time on YOUR health journey, and not living in the shoes of someone’s else.

Staying motivated can fall real quickly when people start their health plans fast and furious. How often do you start an exercise routine going full throttle for the first two weeks or month, and then fall back into old patterns and lose the momentum? Losing motivation occurs because fast and furious is not sustainable as a life-long pattern, nor is it necessarily healthy. Whether it is your nutrition plan or your exercise regimen, beginning with a strong, healthy mindset that you cannot change everything at once is critical. But realizing that those small changes, grow to larger changes, then it becomes your new normal, which is a consistent way of life. Motivation will thrive when you realize you can achieve one small goal at a time, then another, then another. The accomplishment you feel after tackling those goals will keep your head in the game.

With assessing your mindset of why you may lose motivation, be aware of your “excuses.” Don’t let your excuses become your setbacks of the hard work you have put forth in your health journey. Write down your excuses in a journal. Look at them and OWN them. Realize the pattern you fall into when those excuses come along. For example, if getting up early is tough because you had a rough night or didn’t sleep, think about the fact that you ALWAYS feel better when you show up and conquer that workout no matter whether you’re tired or not. If the excuse is that you are too busy, then I can say, “Welcome to Life!” Everyone is busy. Life is just busy no matter what season you’re in, how many kids you have, or what you’re work schedule is like. If we are intentional with the time we DO have free, and streamline our days so that there IS time for our workouts, then we need to commit and not allow those excuses to enter our minds. Schedule it in and COMMIT. It takes discipline on our part to schedule our days so that excuses just aren’t an option. Excuses don’t have to stop you… You stop the excuses!

Thinking about your WHY is extremely important in keeping that motivation going at full speed. When we start our health journey, there is usually a motivating factor that kick starts us into gear. It could be your health is at risk and you need to do something NOW to prevent further issues. Your WHY could be to get your health back after having children where you did not prioritize your nutrition or exercise routine. Your WHY could also be that you want to lose weight and gain lean muscle to increase your strength for not only yourself, but your children, grand-children or lifestyle as a busy working person. When we remember WHY we strive for better eating habits, better lifestyle choices, and more consistent exercise where we can see changes, we remember our motivation that began our journey.  That WHY motivates us and puts a fire in our souls for pushing ourselves to complete that workout, and commit to the PROCESS of our health journey. When you start to feel unmotivated, bring that WHY into the front of your mind and let nothing stop you from pushing yourself to completion of that task at hand.

Asking a friend to be your workout buddy or accountability partner, is so helpful in keeping motivated on your health and fitness journey. Tapping into a friend who you trust, who you can share your frustrations and victories with, and someone who will not sugar coat their words, but hold you accountable to what you signed up for. You committed. Your buddy can help you stay committed. Have them text you before workouts, encourage you when you feel unmotivated, and push you harder than you would push yourself. Give them permission to truly hold your nutrition and fitness goals in the palm of their hands, meaning that they can have access to your commitment and know how to help you achieve your goals. Believe me, when you get that text at 5am on the morning you just don’t feel like showing up for a workout, it makes a difference! You will be surprised how helpful it is to have someone “know your business” and care enough to have you stick with your commitment. You will be stronger and fitter by having that buddy help you navigate through your personal health journey.If you struggle with staying motivated, realize that SUCCESS CAN and will happen! Results take time. They take persistence, endurance, and consistency on every level in order to fully see the results and goals you began to tackle on Day1 of your journey. Success is possible! The essential component is motivation through every season and every chapter of the journey. Yes, there will be days or even weeks that you may feel discouraged, or like you just want a break from working out or eating healthy, or possibly like you want to throw the towel in on all your efforts because it’s just HARD WORK. Well my friends, results require hard work. You won’t ever regret a workout. You won’t ever regret showing up and completing what you committed to. You won’t ever regret the sacrifices you make from indulgences you love when you have worked so hard at keeping your diet in line. But you WILL regret giving up. You will come to realize that a sustainable healthy lifestyle IS achievable! With patience, drive, and grit, you will see results and you will be successful. Write down your goals and place that piece of paper in a place where you can see it daily. Keep your eyes on the GOALS. Be mindful of the PROCESS. Be diligent at reaching small goals that lead to greater things ahead. And stay motivated through the ebbs and flows of the journey that is intended to be a marathon, not a sprint… steady and consistent. You’ve got this!

Are You Focusing on the “What” or the “How?”

When you think about your nutrition plan, are you getting wrapped up in the WHAT of things and neglecting the HOW of things?

Are you asking: Should I eat carbs? What about this food? What about that food? How much sugar should I eat? What should I have? What about this nutrition book? What about this diet book?

When we lose our sense of HOW we go about our nutrition plan and the approach we make, we are focusing on the what, leaving us scrambling for answers.

Here are TWO strategies that can be a GAME CHANGER as you strategize to maintain weight, trim body fat or build muscle.

1 – Keep a JOURNAL of HOW YOU FEEL when you eat
You will be able to decipher if you are eating out of hunger or for another reason. Are you hungry or maybe bored, stressed or sad? There can be a lot of reasons why you are eating and there’s nothing wrong with that. Finding a pattern and tracking to see why you eat will help you!
A lot of times we don’t eat when we are hungry so consider waiting until you are at a hunger level 7 and then eat. Don’t wait until you are at a hunger level 8, 9 or 10, that’s too long to wait; but wait to eat when you are at a level 3 or 4. Then, write down when you eat and how you feel.

2 – Make sure you are EATING SLOWLY
Eat slowly, take up to 20 minutes for a meal! We tend to eat too fast because we are distracted and not mindful or we are just used to eating quickly! That can lead us to over consume! Track how long it takes to eat a meal then work to slowly add time to that. Maybe you eat in 5 minutes, work to add 2 minutes to that…don’t shoot for 20 minutes right away! Just make progress! You can make smaller bites, drink water between meals and visit with others during the meal, all allowing you to take longer to eat your meal.

Mastering these 2 things can help you manage your weight!

The WHAT of your nutrition is important but FIRST you need to get the HOW in place. You need to know HOW you will go about your nutrition plan and HOW you will maintain it and then focus on the WHAT. So are you focusing on the right thing?

💻Written by Coach Brad Tillery

2019 Ultimate Holiday Shopping Guide

🎅🏼 🎁I know it’s a little on the early side… but have you gotten your holiday shopping done yet? ✨

🎁We have a GREAT free gift for you that will help you check all the names off your list – and help you spread the gift of good health! It’s our brand-new 2019 HEALTHY HOLIDAY GIFT GUIDE!

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🎄Whether your gift-ee is into wellness, yoga, fitness, or simply enjoys eating delicious food, we’ve got you covered!

🎉Not only that, but we’re pretty sure you’ll find at least a few items that you’ll put on your own personal gift-getting list. :)

You can download your copy of our 2019 Healthy Holiday Gift Guide for FREE right now! 🎅

⚡It’s only available for a short time… so be sure to get your copy today! (It’s our gift to you!!!)