Confessions

Inadequate
I’ve recently had to confess to someone why I’m such a nag.  I’ve owned up to my feelings of inadequacy and why, to this day, I still don’t feel like I measure up.  I can freely admit I have never felt beautiful.
I grew up the little fat girl.  It’s embarrassing to say this still, but I need to speak my truth. I was fat, chubby, chunky.  And I heard about it all the time.  I was teased and called names and shamed – from a tiny child until adulthood.  Being fat was never out of my reach.  And I still feel it.  I still feel like it.
Once I was old enough to figure out I could do something about my weight, I tried.  I did my best.  But, I was a teenager and I didn’t think things through and I took the “easy” route – resorting to eating disorders.  Starving, purging, non-binge purging, excessive exercise.  I damn near killed myself and ended up hurting the people around me.  I screwed up my body, my health, and my mental well-being.  I spent a lot of time getting better.  A lot of wasted time that could have been better spent for a 16, 17, 18 year old girl.
And then I was fat again.
Fast forward to years later and finally really figuring it out – for real – the fitness and nutrition part – and losing that weight and feeling better about myself.  BUT, I’m still the fat girl.  I still feel like the fat girl.  I can’t shake it.  Dammit!  I am still often focused on what’s wrong with me rather than what’s right with me.
And so, I often feel inadequate.  I feel like I don’t measure up to the standards some people have, and I nag them.  I NAG them.  I pester.  And it’s shitty.  Because, I’m not a jerk.  I’m not an asshole.  I just wear my heart on my sleep and I think the worst and I worry.  I still feel like a little (fat) girl.
And it’s even shittier because I’m an adult.  I have a good job, and I’m funny, and I have a wonderful social circle of friends and family; but I feel bad.  I feel like I’m hurting my relationships with people because of my pestering nature and I’m screwing up friendships before they even happen.  Because I still feel like the fat girl and I feel like I have to earn my way.
When my clients tell me they are struggling with their fitness or their nutrition or their self-esteem, I can tell them I can relate – because I’ve been in their shoes (and often still feel like I am).  And what’s really important is that I remind them of their self worth.  I have to remind myself sometimes of mine.
Being overweight or lackadaisical with our exercise habits or nutrition doesn’t make us worth less or worthless.  Yet, we continue to put so much emphasis on what we look like, rather than how we feel and on our physical and mental health.  This may seem hypocritical coming from a fitness and nutritional professional, but being healthy is as much mental as it is physical, and the aesthetic side of it should just be a bonus (rather than the main focal point).
Finding out the root of personal issues (like my feeling inadequate) can often help us let go of whatever is holding us back so that we can move forward with a better, healthier life.  Letting go of what hurts us and hinders us so that we can become fit – mentally, physically, and emotionally.
MiniMe
~FB
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Day 31 – Reflect

Day 31 – Reflect

Today is the final day of this 31-Day Health and Wellness Challenge and your goal today is to Reflect. Reflect on the last 31 days, the last year, the last decade. Think about what is working for you and what isn’t. Deep reflections can really empower us to gain self-awareness and to improve and become better humans. And who doesn’t want to be a better human? If there is something in your life that isn’t working for you – change it. If things are going great, keep it up. Reflect on your relationships and your accomplishments. At the end of the day, be proud of who you are. And smile.

Be the good.

~FB

Day 27 – Combine My Workouts

Day 27 – Combine My Workouts

Today you’re challenge is to combine all the little exercises I’ve given you over the last 27 days:

1. Plank (30 – 60 seconds) x 3
2. Get some steps. It’s a gorgeous day so get out for a walk/run/hike
3. Do the Body Weight Workout from Day 14 (do it twice)
4. Do 50 Push-ups (x1 or x2)
5. Squat. Find the perfect song and squat til you drop. (Well, not really drop.)

You can always find a workout somewhere. #everydayistrainingday

~FB

Day 23 – Spread Some Cheer

Day 23 – Spread Some Cheer
Smile. Say hello to those you pass. Giggle and keep it going. Leave a positive note somewhere.
 
My co-worker left me this little guy on my desk years ago…she said he reminded her of me because of the big blue eyes. It still sits on my desk and every time I look at it it makes me laugh. Little things DO count.
blue eyes
Aside from helping others have a better day, spreading cheer around is also great for your soul.  Psychologists call it “Helper’s High”.  Our brains actually release feel-good chemicals when we help someone, leading us to do more of the same.
Cheer.  Spread it.
~FB

Day 21- Get Social

Day 21 – Get Social

Lunch with friends, hit up a local pub or cafe for a Games Night, go to a class. The winter can be the most depressing time of year, so stay a step ahead and socialize with friends or family or strangers (make new friends!). Laugh and cohort.

Interacting with others boosts feelings of well-being and decreases feelings of depression. Research has shown that one sure way of improving your mood is to work on building social connections. You may even lower your risk of dementia

In addition, communicating with people face-to-face can help to make us more resilient to stress factors in the long run.

So don’t hesitate…make a plan, grab some friends, and get out (or stay in – together) and have some fun.

SOCIABLE!

~FB

Day 19 – Do 50 Push-Ups

Day 19 – Do 50 Push-Ups.

Yep. That’s right. Today your challenge is to drop and give me 50 push ups. No, they don’t have to be done consecutively.

Look, I get it. I just spent the entire 2018 year doing a minimum of 50 push ups a day – and I still freakin’ hate them. But push ups are a great exercise, and here are a few reasons why:
1. Increase Functional Strength via Full Body Activation;
2. Enhance Your Cardiovascular System;
3. Increase Whole Body Muscle Definition – and promotes HGH (Human Growth Hormone);
4. Great full-body workout.

So go ahead, get down, and start pushing.

~FB

 

Day 18 – Stay Positive

Day 18 – Stay Positive

Hand lettered text. 3d Stay Positive. Inspirational poster. Design element for print, clothing design.

Positive Thinking (and speaking and acting) can improve your mental, physical, and emotional health and wellness. Positive emotions have been linked with better health, longer life, and greater well-being in numerous scientific studies. On the other hand, chronic anger, worry, and hostility increase the risk of developing heart disease, as people react to these feelings with raised blood pressure and stiffening of blood vessels.

Here are a few tips on staying positive:

Write in a gratitude journal every day.  Make sure to be specific!  A number of studies have found gratitude to be linked with positive emotions, and overall well-being, and life satisfaction.

Listen to happy-sounding music.  Research has shown that music activates the region of the brain that releases the feel good chemical dopamine and also relaxes the body.  So “happy” music can in fact make you feel happier!  Seriously….who can listen to “Happy” by Pharrell Williams or “Shake It Off” by Taylor Swift and not just feel like you want to dance and smile.

Share positivity by sending one thank-you email or doing one kind act every day. There are several studies that show that acts of kindness can boost happiness, reduce depression, and even help you live longer.

Challenge your negative thinking.  Ask yourself, “Is there another more positive way I could view this?”  Studies have shown that being able to think optimistically is good for your health and well-being.

Optimists are also better problem solvers and better at accepting bad situations.

Smile.  It might sound simplistic, but research has shown that it actually helps you feel happier.  Feedback sent to the brain from facial muscles can actually impact the development of emotions and the effect is even stronger if you combine the smile with a positive thought.  So smile!

Follow your passion.  Do something you feel excited about.  Volunteer for a cause you believe in or sign up for a class to learn something new.  Several studies have shown that people who feel a sense of meaning in their life are healthier, live longer, and have greater life satisfaction.

You don’t have to let bad news and negativity ruin your day.  You have a choice about where you focus your attention and how you choose to respond to any situation.  Try incorporating these tips into your life and I’m confident you’ll see how the positives outweigh the negatives.

~FB

Day 17 – Skip1 

Day 17 – Skip1 

skip1

Skip1.org is an incredible organization whose goal is to “solve world hunger by building and renovating kitchens within orphanages and schools in impoverished areas; supporting food distribution and feeding programs in places where kitchens can’t be built, and helping with clean water and  sustainable agricultural initiatives” – plus sooooo very much more.  *****YOUR CHALLENGE***** is to Skip1 today. That means, skip the specialty coffee, skip your take-out lunch, whatever it is, skip it (you’ll never miss it) and donate to Skip1.org OR skip it and donate to your local food bank or another program.  Skipping a $6 latte may not mean much to you, but it could change the life of someone else.

Do something good.

~FB

 

Day 16 – Make a commitment to Exercise (and stick with it).

Day 16 – Make a commitment to Exercise (and stick with it).

working out

I find that when I actually “commit” to something, my success rate is 100%. If I just say I’m going to do something, sometimes I allow myself to fail. When making a commitment, I follow through…I plan, I figure it out ahead of time so that I have success. So, I challenge you to make the commitment to exercise (start off with a commitment to exercise for even to work out and at what times. Will you go to the gym? Will you do a video or take a class or go running? Commit to it and follow through.

Day 14 – Do My Body Weight Workout

Day 14 – Do my Body Weight Workout

campers

30 seconds Jumping Jacks
30 seconds High Knees
30 seconds Squat Jumps
30 seconds Plank
30 seconds Crunch
30 seconds Burpees
30 seconds Leg Lifts
30 seconds Wall Sit

Do it once, or twice. Or as many times as you like.

I love body weight workouts (also known as calisthenics training).  In fact, most of my boot camps are body weight-based.  here’s why I love them:

1.It allows people to take the guess work out of using fancy equipment;

2. And saves money because you don’t need a gym membership;

3. You can do body weight training anywhere; in your living room, at the park, it doesn’t matter, as long as you have enough room to move;

4. It combines cardio and strength training;

5. It’s extremely efficient and it burns fat fast;

6. It’s great for any fitness level and at any fitness level it can be challenging;

7. It’s great for building balance, flexibility, coordination, and strength – both physically and mentally; and

8. There’s never any reason not to work out.

So go ahead…give it a try.

~FB