I’ve been told so many times “You should look into being a personal trainer” and every time I laugh a little bit harder. People are saying that to me now because I’ve lost so much weight, and because obviously I know a little bit about getting in shape. My body has changed, yes, but my personality hasn’t changed at all. I’m not (suddenly) this kind person with soft edges who has the power to encourage you to do anything you set your mind to. In fact, I’ve got even more of a no bullshit attitude NOW than I had when I started.
Two years ago, a few months after my first attempt to get healthy (which mostly failed), I found a girl named Mary on Instagram. She was from the northeast, she was a former soldier who was now a trainer. I started following her and so many times I talked with her about getting healthy and working out and eating right. You don’t really need to know about my friend Mary. But if she were here, she would tell you about all the excuses I gave her for YEARS before I decided to start taking my health seriously.
If I were to ever become a trainer, which I won’t, I would absolutely HATE to have a client like me. Someone with a never ending stream of excuses about how they couldn’t (or WOULDN’T) compromise for their results. I’m getting angry just thinking about it.
I posted a status on Facebook the other day and I’ll re-post it here. It said –
This is why I can’t be a trainer. This shit right here. Excuse me as I rant: If you come to me for advice or suggestions, I’ll stop what I’m doing to help you – all day, any day, no problem. However. If your immediate response to my two cents is to tell me how that’s not something you can work into your life, I’m not gonna try to argue with you. I physically cannot. I just say “okay” and go along with my life. That, to me, says “I’ve already decided to continue what I’m doing and hope things work out in my favor.” That says “I’m unwilling to compromise my lifestyle to get the results I want.” And I simply cannot argue with that level of ignorance. Sorry if this is offensive to anyone. I’m ignorant intolerant.
I was that person with all the excuses. I was that person who would get hype about “changing my life”, just to give up when I didn’t drop 60 pounds overnight. I was that person who didn’t like vegetables or most fruits, so I thought I would never be able to diet or eat clean. I was all of these people, and more. I’ve overcome that. Now I know, that all of those excuses were just that – excuses. Now I know that results don’t happen overnight. I know how to eat clean in a way that my body responds well to. I can’t fight those demons in someone else because I’ve just figured out how to fight them in myself.
That’s why they call this a Fitness JOURNEY. Because it’s a long road! And because you learn new things all along the way; about yourself, about your body, about your emotional attachment to food, about your limits… And once you learn those things, they change! Limits change, attachments change, and bodies definitely change. At the end of the day, I’m still on my own fitness journey and right now I don’t ever think I’ll ever know this road well enough to give directions.
However, there is one area where I’m completely confident giving advice, planning, and helping people to understand - and that’s meal prep. I’m so good at it, in fact, that I offer it as a service. I started doing this a while ago, and I have clients all over the United States that come to me for their completely customized meal plans. I don’t do this as a way to make money, but the fact of that matter is that there’s a lot of work and calculation that goes into creating a meal plan for someone. Everyone is different. Everyone needs a certain number of calories to keep their bodies going. Every eats at different times throughout the day. Sometimes people need more calories during certain times of the month (looking at the ladies). Some people need to eat 5 meals a day, others only need 1 meal and several snacks.
The point is, meal plans are not 'one size fits all'. Everyone likes different foods, different textures. These are all things I take into consideration when creating one of my meal plans. I’m still accepting clients, so if you’re interested in what you’ve read about today, click here to create an email. I’ll get back to you within the hour. If you want more information, click here to check out my Meal Plan FAQs.
Eat at the same time every day.
Even if you're eating complete and total shit - Be consistent about your shit eating. Do it at the same time every day, 7 days a week.
It has to do with training your metabolism - which is a fancy way of saying You train your body to use your food for energy instead of storing it as fat. If you eat at the same time every day, your body notices. Imagine your body saying "Oh yay! I don't have to store this food as fat, because I know I'm going to get fed again in three hours. Let me burn this off right quick." Diet or no diet, this is important.
Diet or no diet, this is important. Everything but water is either loaded with chemicals or sugar (but I'm not gonna fight that battle today). If you don't like the taste of plain water; add lemon, mint, or lime.
Fat leaves your body in two ways, pee and sweat. So the natural answer to How do I lose weight is pee more and sweat more. That translates to drink more water and make your body sweat.
Invest in a Fitbit, and actually use it.
If you don't know what a Fitbit is, let me be the first to enlighten you. A Fitbit is a fitness tracker. You wear it on you wrist like a watch. They range anywhere from $60 - $250, and they are worth every single penny. In addition to real-time step and calorie tracking, some of the more advanced models have features that track the flights of stairs you climb throughout the day, your heart rate, and answer calls with the touch of a button. In addition to the actual trackers (which are very well made), you get a whole world (literally speaking) of support via messageboards and communities. You can add friends who have Fitbits and see how your activity compares to theirs over the last 7 days. Fitbit is an excellent company - I recently LOST my tracker. I was no one's fault but my own. When I emailed the company to see if they could use GPS to locate my device, they offered to send me a new one completely free of change. They are incredibly loyal to their customers and NO, I am not being payed to write this article. That's just a huge perk.
If you're not someone who has the time and energy to spend at the gym, this will show you that some exercise is better than none. The trip to the restroom, the walk to and from your car, walking next door... It all matters. Fitbit technology takes these steps and adds them together and gives you a very accurate idea of how many miles you've walked. That's right, miles. Before long, you'll find yourself parking at the end of the parking lot just so you can hit your step goal for the day. You'll be walking laps around your house at 10:00pm just trying to get those last few steps in before bed. There's something comforting about knowing that what you're doing, matters. And that's why so many people (like myself) SWEAR by the use of Fitbits.
Find healthy options of foods you already eat.
I love pasta so much that I've actually considered the possibility that I'm Italian and nobody told me. In fact, if you looks in my Recipe section, you can see that even my very restrictive diet can't come between me and my Pasta. The difference? I use whole wheat pasta (aka the brown stuff) and do you know what? My taste buds can't tell the difference.
First things first, carbs are your primary source of energy. If you stop eating carbs all together, your car runs out of gas (so to speak). But most importantly - Diets don't work if you don't stick to them. If you cut all carbs out of your life, your body is just going to crave them until your break. It's better to have a healthy serving of carbs every day, than to starve yourself of energy until your break your diet and binge eat the entire McDonalds menu.
Don't ever stop.
This is so important, and I know how cliche it sounds. But don't ever stop. You have a cheat meal? Alright. Drink lots of water to flush the toxins out, and get back on the band wagon tomorrow. You missed a workout because school/work/life was too overwhelming? That's okay. Promise yourself that you'll push yourself to the max at your next workout. Your Uncle ate some of the meals you had prepped for yourself? Treat yourself to healthy meal out with friends instead. You're craving chocolate? Eat half of the bar, and drop the other half in the toilet and throw it away (assume you don't have anyone around you that'd like a free half chocolate bar). Don't let a bad day, rotten mood, or bump in the road derail all of your success. There's a quote that says "You didn't gain all the weight by eating ONE bad meal. So don't think you'll gain it all back after one cheat."
Think of the reasons you want to be healthier. Think of the people that want to watch you fail. The people that want you to succeed. What kind of an example are you setting for those people? For your siblings, for your children? You CAN do it!
Do you remember the first day at your very first job? How about the first time you ever went to a gym? How about the first time you ever received a paycheck, or when you got your first car?
Moments like these happen every single day, all around us. You may not notice them or recognize them for what they are, but they are happening.
Something I struggle with is the idea that everyone starts. Starts working, starts earning money, starts working out, starts driving. You can’t judge the first-timer working out next to you at the gym. You can’t snicker at the new girl in your office for not knowing how to work the copy machine. And you can’t judge people on Facebook for getting their first paycheck and expressing their pride. At one point, YOU were all of those people.
Channel your negative energy into a smile, or a friendly wave. Don’t you remember how scary it is to start something?
I already know what happens when I give up. I want to see what will happen if I don't.