Resilience: your #1 fitness skill

You have the best exercise equipment, a fabulous workout program, and nutrition guidelines at your fingertips. You feel ready to go, ready to attack your fitness goals with determination.  But the bad news is that’s not necessarily going to determine your success in implementing a nutrition or exercise habit. Whether you’re an olympic athlete, recreational exerciser, figure competitor, or busy student trying to fit in your workouts, you will not succeed if you do not have one thing: resilience.

Why resilience matters

You have the best exercise equipment, a fabulous workout program, and nutrition guidelines at your fingertips. You feel ready to go, ready to attack your fitness goals with determination. But the bad news is that's not necessarily going to determine your success in implementing a nutrition or exercise habit. Whether you're an olympic athlete, recreational exerciser, figure competitor, or busy student trying to fit in your workouts, you will not succeed if you do not have one thing: resilience.

I hate to break it to you, but things aren’t going to be perfect. It’s likely that you’ll stay up too late watching your favorite show, leading you to oversleep, miss your workout, and jack your hunger cues.

It (shit) happens, and your success hinges on your ability to come back to the good habits you’re building.

Before I started focusing on my resilience, I let little things derail me. I became frustrated when I didn’t have the ideal equipment for my workouts or when I only had twenty minutes to train. Resilience has helped me stay more positive and consistent. And remember, consistency leads to results.

Three ways to strengthen your resilience

Focus on the good

Resilience is focusing on the positive whenever possible, instead of getting bogged down in the details.

Did you train for 20 minutes instead of skipping a workout? Count that as a win!

Subbed out a couple exercises because you didn’t have the equipment? Awesome. 

My favorite example?

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Your expectations for a single training session can actually increase the benefits you get from working out.  In other words, thinking positively about what you were able to do can help maximize your results.

Plan!

Help yourself to be more resilient to life’s challenges by creating a plan that supports your willpower. We don’t just skip work meetings because we’re tired. We don’t no-show dinner with friends because we’re stressed about school (well most of the time). But we do this with our workouts? All the time.

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My Three S Formula for Consistency and Motivation will bring awareness to your workout habits and make sure you stay on track, even without motivation.

Utilize both your short and long term memory

When it comes to resilience, you’ve got to maximize both your short and long term memories.

If you’ve slipped up, it’s time to use your short term memory and let that mistake roll off your back. When you wake up the next day, forget you were not acting in line with your goals. Just move on and focus on the next action you can take that supports your goal.

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On the other hand, if you’ve had a little win, HOLD ONTO IT. Focus on that feeling of empowerment and success for as long as you can. This will motivate you to continue!

If you’re looking for help becoming more resilient so you can make positive changes in your life, I’d LOVE to help you create your fit lifestyle.  accountable, check out my upcoming programs. I’d love to work with you!

What’s one fitness or nutrition habit you’re trying to implement?

My moderation journey

Moderation has become quite the buzzword recently. I’ve talked about it, defined the heck out of it, and worked on it as a skill. Truthfully, it’s only been in the last six months that I’ve realized that moderation is the ONLY way I want to live my life anymore.

But if I’m being honest, I definitely have NOT always thought this way. I was one of those people who constantly was praised for her self discipline, which is awesome when it comes to schoolwork, but self-discipline can have some ugly side effects outside of the classroom.

See, where most people hit the wall two weeks into a diet, I broke through it and went ahead at full force. Where most people want a bowl of ice cream two weeks into their diet, I cut more calories for just thinking about it.

 

Moderation has become quite the buzzword recently. I've talked about it, defined the heck out of it, and worked on it as a skill. Truthfully, it's only been in the last six months that I've realized that moderation is the ONLY way I want to live my life anymore. This is my journey to moderation.

For about eleven years, I struggled with a severe eating disorder that took away parts of my childhood, all of my teens, and some of my young adulthood. I restricted my caloric intake excessively and always.  My workout routine was relentless and was my way of burning off every calorie I ate. And when I slipped up? I hated myself. Often, I would look in the mirror or try on clothes and just collapse in tears.

Note my approach to the holidays from about 2004-2015.

Thanksgiving Day: run a 10k, eat extra because I’m hungry and tired, have dessert (and wine once I turned 21 😉 )

Day (or honestly, weeks) after Thanksgiving: count every calorie that goes into my mouth, exercise an hour+ per day, hanging on until the next happy hour excuse to relax

It was miserable. This cycle of indulging followed by severe restriction fueled nothing but disordered eating, over-exercise, and crappy body image, regardless of how thin I became.

Katherine without cellulite

I was constantly searching for a better way to live.

My journey to moderation

After years of restriction, I battled every day to eat more food that would nourish my body and fuel my goals. I’d be lying if I told you it was easy. There were days during my recovery when I cried while eating the extra food.

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Things started to shift in 2014. I found Jill Coleman‘s writings on moderation. Her ideas piqued my interest.  You mean, I don’t have to restrict to see results; I just eat the same way every single day? Cool. I can do that.

And that’s exactly what I tried to do.

My Thanksgiving plate looked like my dinner the night before.

Andrew and my anniversary dinner was nothing out of the ordinary. 

I drank beer (OK, Mike’s Hard Lemonade) or wine most nights. 

Combined with the strength training I recently discovered, I lost body fat, dropping into a pretty lean for me range. I was STOKED.

It wasn’t until mid-2016, I realized something that blew my mind: trying to eat mostly moderately every single day was actually just another way for me to continue restricting myself in the day to day.

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Because I focused so much on eating the same every day, I found myself slipping into old, restrictive patterns.

Social invitations were declined so I could eat the same foods (even if I enjoyed them)

I wanted to indulge on special occasions but made myself stop

Traveling stressed me out (because how could I find my foods)

Since that realization, I KNEW I had to make some changes. I don’t want to be in that restrictive space anymore, so I’ve started testing the waters with some new ideas.  I’ve shifted my approach to be one where moderation is two seemingly opposing concepts.

My #consciousindulgence approach to moderation

  1. Eat in a way that makes you feel like you don’t need to have a cheat day
  2. If you overindulge for whatever reason, remember that it does NOT need to be “cheat day” to indulge OR you don’t need a cheat day to (over) indulge

Again, if I told you it was easy, it would be an utter lie. Those ugly thoughts telling me to eat less, move more, and get smaller still are there; I just don’t listen to them as much.

If I want to indulge a bit more (like when Andrew came and visited), I do.

If I need some chocolate every evening to make me feel satisfied, I eat it.chocolate

I’ve been living this way more and more for the last six months, and it’s made me feel more at peace with food. I also feel more empowered to enjoy my life and the experiences that come with them.

So when I leave for Argentina in a few weeks, you can bet I’m taking my #consciousindulgence approach with me.

Post Workout Recovery: Why Take A Rest Day

Who’s ready for the weekend?!

Here in the United States, it’s an extra long one as we celebrate Labor Day. I for one am spending the weekend on the beach in California with my family. Are you doing anything exciting for Labor Day? Let me know in the comments below!

Labor Day

With a weekend full of relaxation and frivolity (oxymoron? I think not) ahead of us, I thought it would be a good time to chat about rest’s role in fitness and how much you ACTUALLY need.

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Moderation as an Accomplishment

Happy Tuesday, all! We made it through Monday! How was yours? Ours was super mellow. I made some naked (no tortillas) tacos that required absolutely no real ‘cooking’ and tasted this bad boy. OMG. SO. GOOD. Happy to share the recipe if there’s interest!

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I’m also working away on a costume for Juno. Google is having a puppy fashion show on Thursday, and Juno is going as a ladybug. I am NOT crafty, but her outfit is coming along…

 

Today, I would like to return to a previous concept, moderation. I’ve written about it a little bit but would like to share a personal struggle and some actionable tools that may help you.

As with many of us, exercising and movement are big priorities for me. I prioritize my workouts early in the morning and “get my steps in” almost every day. Historically, when I achieve both, a feeling of accomplishment washes over me. When I don’t, anxiety and negative self talk ensue.

Enter last week, 9:59pm. Although I had done a great lifting workout, my work day was full of meetings, evening full of studying (read: a lot of time on my bum), and I still was exhausted. Cue all the feels.

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Recently, I’ve decided that these feelings of inadequacy are BS, and it’s time to start creating that mindset shift. Movement (or lack thereof) is not inherently good or bad, guys; it’s just movement. It’s all in our heads, so we can change the way we think.

How? Actively choose to change your thought pattern and embrace the discomfort zone. Here are a couple strategies I’ve used.

  • Continually modify your goals to set yourself up to succeed. If you are consistently missing your mark, maybe it’s time to re-evaluate.
  • Remove all moral connotations or ideas of worth. Regardless of what you did or didn’t do, remind yourself that you woke up worthy and good.
  • Fight back! Do the opposite of what the ‘shoulds’ tell you. In the example above, my mind was telling me, just go walk around the block, you can get to 10k steps. Instead, I grabbed my nighttime snack and went to bed 🙂

I hope these help! <3

My Quarter Life Crisis

Friends, I have a confession to make on this Thursday morning. I’ve been battling through with my ‘quarter life crisis.’ What’s that you ask? For me, it’s questioning who I am and what I want to be. A feeling of restlessness amidst everything going ‘right.’  I’m not at all complaining. I am SO SO lucky and grateful for the life I’ve worked to attain. Health. A stable job. A roof over my head. Food on my table (well couch). A pup that loves me. But still, I wonder, what the heck am I doing with my life?

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Uprooting my life in California, moving halfway across the country, has been exhausting but it has also given me space to be a little selfish, to think, pray, discern, and talk about my goals with those who matter.

My realization? Time to seize the moment and jump.  I want to pursue my passion for fitness as an means to help women experience fulfilled lives. There is SO MUCH bad information out there, with so many women following twenty year old, stale fitness advice, running their bodies into the ground, or trying to starve themselves into self love. I want to learn some stuff, share some ideas, and help some people. Probably gotta start with that learning bit 😉

That’s where the big news comes in: I’ve signed up for classes to become a NASM Certified Personal Trainer! My hope is that this certification will enable to me help, teach, and support more women in the years to come.

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The best advice I got on this journey was to JUST START. If you’re unsure or worried you’re not capable, just start. I’m learning over and over, we don’t regret the chances we do take!

Thanks for listening, reading the early, nascent stages of this fit girl’s blog! If there are topics you would like to learn about, workout types you’d like to see, please let me know. I would love to get to know you better and help you along your journey too!

Hugs from Juno and me! <3

 

Thoughts on JillFit’s #AntiFragile2016

This post is a reflection on Jill Coleman’s recent #AntiFragile2016 trainings. All frameworks are Jill’s; thoughts and experiences are mine. Check out the movement on Instagram using the hashtag #antifragile2016.

Yay!!! It’s Thursday, congratulations for making it this far! How has your week been? I want to know–let me know below 🙂

Today, I’m excited to start a discussion in our salon about Jill Coleman‘s recent #AntiFragile2016 trainings. I’ve been following her for about a year now. Her words always resonate with me and I was SO excited to be part of this movement.

In her own words, Jill hopes that her #AntiFragile2016 seminars are:

A self-trust education, chock full of tools, insights and steps to get you engaging with your life (and your food environments), rather than being scared of it all.
#AntiFragile is about honing a trust mindset, which is the opposite of control. When we try to control, we are always left feeling anxious, scared and unsettled.

This is so important because life is hard. It takes time to trust yourself to handle whatever comes your way. Why? Everyone says “I love learning,” but I challenge that idea. Learning is never easy. It’s messy, exhausting, non-linear, and often painful. Still, we do it over and over, trying again, pursuing new experiences. We like the results of learning because we find that self trust at the end of the road.

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…Cue cheesy picture from my BIG move to ATX

The #AntiFragile2016 movement resonates deeply with me because in the last four months, I have consistently chosen my discomfort zone. Moving out to Texas was the biggest choice I’ve ever made as an “adult,” and I wasn’t sure I could do it. It’s been so lonely and scary. I still haven’t found my people. I miss my friends and family. I’m still not sure this is “right.”

But you know what?  I’ve stuck through all the challenges. I’m still here. I’ve been resilient, and I’m confident I can handle the ones that are still headed my way.

What do you think about the #AntiFragile2016 framework?