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Are you ready to take a small step forward?

With a New Year, we start to consider all the things we would like to accomplish – all the drastic changes we would like to make.

We set these lofty goals and dream of all the things we can accomplish. Yet rarely do we actually breakdown our goals into achievable pieces and PLAN out how we are going to get there.

We seem to set New Year’s Resolutions with no actual plan to accomplish them.

And you may be thinking to yourself, “No…I always want to accomplish my New Years Resolutions.”

But stop and think about how often you actually consider HOW you are going to accomplish those goals. Usually you don’t. You just state or write down WHAT you want to accomplish and never really go any further than that.

Yes. You may be motivated and really want to reach your goals. But you aren’t setting yourself up to actually follow through if you don’t PLAN.

So on this first day of 2015 take time to not only write down your Resolutions, but also write down how you plan to accomplish them.

And break those plans down into bite-sized pieces. Give yourself SMALL STEPS you can take right away.

Don’t leave yourself with a huge goal that you don’t know how to start – that may even seem so daunting that you don’t know where to start so end up never moving forward.

Break it down and give yourself small manageable tasks to do that will add up to big results and help you get the momentum going.

Remember, even a small step forward is a step forward. And consistent progress in the right direction adds up!

So write down your New Year’s Resolutions and PLAN out how you will reach those goals.

Happy New Year and what small step forward are you planning to take in 2015 to achieve your Resolutions!?!

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A New Years Eve Reflection

WARNING: This post is sappy. You’ve been warned.

I think we all need to remember this heading in to this New Year!

I’ve written this blog for almost three years. And rarely a week goes by where I don’t get at least a couple of posts up because I love it so much.

I do it purely for the love.

Because I love health and fitness so much. Because I love all of you so much.

I actually got asked the other day what job I would do if money wasn’t an issue.

I didn’t even need to think about the answer.

Because I’m doing it.

I live, breathe, eat, sweat health and fitness.

I live, breathe, eat, sweat seeing other people realize their own potential.

Every day I want to share my passion with everyone I meet (Seriously, never get into a random conversation with me if you don’t want me to go on some health and fitness tangent because it will happen…Poor lady at the coffee shop who just said “Hello……”)

Every day, I hope to inspire, to educate, to help others grow to be stronger, fitter, healthier, MORE EMPOWERED than they could ever imagine.

And when I say all this, I’m by no means saying I’m selfless.

Far from it.

I’m just saying this is my passion.

And I get a lot in return.

While I help my clients, each of them teaches me something new. Each of them inspires me in return. Each of them touches and changes me. Each of them makes me better and stronger.

You’ve all touched me and taught me so much in 2013.

I only hope I’ve done the same.

We all now face a new year with infinite possibilities. We have the chance to learn, to grow, to inspire.

What are you going to do with your New Year?

P.S. Check back tomorrow for a chance to have me help you get started on your New Years Resolutions for FREE! Oh yea! Working with the Man Biceps! 😛 Ok…Sappiness is now complete.

Achieving Your New Years Resolutions – It’s All In the Preparation

The other week I wrote about goal setting so that you can achieving your goals this coming year.

But setting proper goals is only the first step.

The next step is planning out how you are going to achieve your goals. And the more detailed your plan, the more likely you are to succeed.

new years fitness resolutions

Most people really skip this part.

They set goals. And then they start working out and eating healthy according to something they read or some vague idea of what they should be doing.

But they don’t really have a PLAN.

They really aren’t sure exactly what they are going to do from day-to-day. They really don’t know what is paying off and what isn’t. They really aren’t consistent enough with one thing to truly track what is working and what isn’t.

And while they may work really hard for a month to try to achieve their goals, they probably aren’t going to stick with it in the long run EVEN if they see progress.

Because at some point their haphazard program isn’t going to get them results. And when they plateau, they won’t know where to go because they will have no idea what worked and what didn’t.

But if they had a plan not only would they have direction to begin with, but they would also know what worked.

They could adjust the plan as they realize what benefits them and what doesn’t. As as they tweak their plan, they would continue to see progress.

Whereas if they had no plan, they would almost have to completely start over to continue getting results. And starting over with no idea of what works….Well that by no means guarantees you results.

Plus a plan is a great way to get you motivated and keep you motivated once you’ve set your goals!

Often we set our goals and those keep us motivated for a week or two.

But once that week or two is up, we lose that initial motivation.

If we’ve done enough to get results in those first couple of weeks, that may provide us with motivation for a few more. But if we haven’t seen great instant results, we may give up.

A plan though would help us stay motivated because we have something clear to follow and accomplish.

Accomplishing and completing the program you lined up, while it might not get you to your ultimate goal, is an achievement in and of itself.

It keeps you motivated to have something clearly laid out in front of you. It is harder to give up on something tangible, something you’ve spent time and energy already to develop, than it is to give up on something that is just a vague goal in your head.

There is something staring you in the face, letting you know you didn’t do it, when you write out a plan.

A PLAN.

That is why programs like P90x get results. They have clearly laid out plans. They have ways to progress and regress the program so that you can adjust it to fit you as you work through it. They even have slightly different variations of the plan to help you reach your specific goals.

You don’t have to play a guessing game to figure out what works.

YOU HAVE A PLAN.

So this year if you want results, create a plan. Set great goals and then map out how you are going to get there.

The next step after creating the plan is to do it and track it. After that, you just can’t be afraid to tweak it!!

NOTE: I’m not telling you to get a program like P90x (although you can if you want!). I’m simply saying that if you want to achieve your goal, the more you can think through all the variables like a program like that does, the more likely you are to achieve your goals!

0-60 in less than 1 second

Who doesn’t want to floor the gas pedal and go from 0-60 in less than 1 second?

Who doesn’t see a motivating fitness picture or read a success story and not want to start working out right then and there?

Who wants to take it slow when they first start a new workout program?

NOBODY!

But unfortunately, unlike some of the race cars out there, our bodies aren’t built to go from 0-60 in less than 1 second!

If you try to workout too often and do too much too soon, you aren’t going to see results any quicker. Actually, you will most likely slow your progress or even keep yourself from progressing AT ALL. You also risk getting an injury that will stop you from doing anything for a while.

I’ve seen it happen all too often. Especially around this time of year.

People get all gung-ho about their New Years resolutions. They have their goals and they want to accomplish them right now!

They start up a gym membership and may have never worked out before in their life, but they are now hitting the gym at least 5 times a week. They start logging in millions of miles or jump right into lifting heavy weights.

Their bodies aren’t prepared for either activity. They’ve haven’t taken the time to create an aerobic base or get their bodies ready to handle heavy loads. They haven’t worked on their mobility or form and haven’t really even taken the time to develop a specific program/routine that can be monitored to see if it is working.

They are perpetually sore, but don’t slow down. They may develop some slight pain in their hips or knees or muscles, but rehab and prehab are only given a fleeting thought as something they should be doing, but just don’t have time for now.

And they just keep pushing. They’re up there at 60. And they may have seen results right at the beginning.

But guess what?

They can’t keep up that pace. Their body gives out. Little injuries become chronic pain. Their numbers and miles slowly go down because their body is stalling.

They weren’t patient. And in their rush to achieve their goals, they’ve actually delayed themselves from reaching them.

I know it’s so tempting to start lifting heavy 4 times a week, always trying to hit your max. I know it’s tempting to workout more and more as you see your body become slimmer.

I FULLY understand the desire, the drive, to work as hard as you possibly can to achieve your goals NOW!

But if you really want your goals that bad, you need to rest too. You need to be patient. You need to outline a long-term program and you need to learn to enjoy the ride.

Learn to love the workouts themselves and enjoy each and every part of improving your health, even the rehab/prehab and rest days.

Constantly remind yourself that when your body rests, that is when the muscles are actually growing – that is when you are actually reaping the benefits of all the time you spend in the gym!

Honestly, if you can remind yourself to be patient now, you will reach your goals a million times quicker than if you try to rush to reach them now.

Don’t let your drive to reach your goal (be it a weight lifting competition, marathon or even just weight loss) make you push yourself too far too fast.

It’s all about the ride! Enjoy each and every moment of it!

Give it 3 months

I have a love-hate relationship with January.

Be honest...Does this sound like you?

On the one hand, January means lots of new members and clients (YAY!). It is also a great time to rethink your goals and plan out new strategies to reach them. It is usually a time when you are most gung-ho about your goals so it is a great time to start working hard!

On the other hand, January means a crowded gym and goals that are never achieved by the majority of the population. It means a lot of frustration for me as a trainer and fitness enthusiast because I see person after person quickly give up on their fitness goals.

How are some people just happy about signing up for a gym membership? I mean literally we have people come in during January who sign up for a membership and never come in after signing up. Why waste your money? I mean if you aren’t going to use it – if you aren’t going to follow through on this resolution – why even set it?

Don’t be one of those people!!! I can deal with a crowded gym but I can’t deal with the people who don’t even give their resolutions a fair chance.

Making a commitment to your health and fitness isn’t easy. There are even times that fanatics like me falter…like these last two weeks…and trust me I feel so crappy I can’t wait to not see bad food or the couch for a while. (Actually my body is screaming out to me, “VEGETABLES!!! VEGETABLES!!!”)

Anyway, committing to a healthy diet and fitness program isn’t easy. You don’t just say to yourself, “I want to be healthy” and it instantly happens.

No! There are cravings for bad food. There are days when you feel sore and tired and just don’t want to workout. There are friends and family who can act as bad influences!

It isn’t easy. No one ever said it would be.

BUT if you give yourself a chance to really settle into a ROUTINE, it will get EASIER!!! You may always still crave certain foods, and there may be times you skip workouts, but you will feel committed and CRAVE your healthy lifestyle if you stray from it for a few days.

How long does it take before you actually feel committed? I tell my clients that if they can push through the initial struggle and stick with their resolutions for 3 months, they will find that it gets like 100 times easier to stick to their goals after that. It takes about 3 months to make working out and eating well a HABIT. Once you’ve made a habit out of enacting your goals, you are way less likely to give up on them.

So don’t be one of those people who only crowd up the gym in January or sign up and never come!

Join a gym, set some goals and push through the first three months. It will be worth it. Trust me.

P.S. If you need help staying committed for those first three months, hire a trainer! I always tell my clients that my job is to help them make working out and lifting weights a habit so that they can do it on their own!

Really? New Years Resolutions?

I’ve never been one to make serious New Years resolutions.

I do the usual, “I want to get in even better shape” or “I want to clean my house more.” But I never set real, measurable goals.

But I want this year to be different. This year I want to set a sort of “Bucket List” – a list of things I will complete before this year is over. Things I want to be able to look back and say, “I did that!”

Unlike “resolutions,” the items on my “Pail List” (Ryan called it my “pail list” since it is smaller than a “Bucket List”…and since I don’t intended on “Kicking the bucket” anytime soon!) are all actions or events, not necessarily a goal I’m working toward that will be fully completed at some point during the year.

One thing on my “bucket list”is to create a Powerlifting training program that not only makes me the strongest woman alive (haha) but also one of the sexiest (great goal right!?!)!

I hear so many people say that you can’t train to be super strong and super lean at the same time, but then again those people probably haven’t ever seen someone who has done Crossfit! I want to create another program that proves you can do just that!

I’m going to take all the self-experimenting and research that I’ve done over the past year or so and use it to create my own program!

So first item – my own super awesome powerlifting program.

My second item, of course relates back to my first item…I want to compete in a national raw powerlifting competition! YAY!

Ok so, that is all I have so far other than maybe dying my hair a super funky color (one year it ended up being pinky/orange…long story…).

These items on my list are just things I want to complete before the year is up – some will take some training while others are things I could technically do tomorrow, but all are things that I WILL DO…unlike cleaning my house more often…I mean what really is more often….

So what are some items on your “Pail List” for 2012?

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