Squirrel.

So I’m officially into what I’ve been calling “Operation M.I.L.F (F)”–> decide what you want that to stand for but I’ve adapted the acronym from what I was calling Mom In Love with Fitness… to Mom Is Looking Freaking Fantastic. (Hense, my extra F) haha.

There are SO many programs that you can hop into to get that body back, SO many challenges, work outs, nutrition plans, etc that quite frankly it can be overwhelming. This is why lately, I’ve been feeling a little ‘squirrely’. One day, I’m deciding to go on a cleanse, another day I’m deciding that I’m going to strength train… a few weeks ago I thought I’d train for a half marathon, I agreed to do another fitness photoshoot with other trainers in May, I started HIIT training in between strength days… played around with my circuits again, saw a fitness coach for help… And then took a mental break and went to Alberta to visit family with my daughter. (PHEW!)

So I get back, and it immediately all comes flooding back to me. I think to myself:
– your core strength and leg strength was brutal snowboarding: let’s work on that
– you rocked a one piece in the hot tub: let’s change that
– hum.. 1/2 marathon? You almost collapsed hiking back country with your sisters on the mountains: let’s fix that
– Your “cleanse” failed miserably, and you’re not eating right at ALL: let’s get on a plan
– You’re extremely tired, and not taking the proper supplements/ vitamins: find a PLAN

PLAN, PLAN, PLAN… FIX, FIX, FIX,

Squirrel.

Time to reset, and remember what it is exactly I want to accomplish. What do I REALLY want. Yes, I DO want to accomplish those things above, but just READING all of those things makes me squirrely. So, SELF: WHAT DO YOU REALLY WANT?

When I ask myself that question, the answer is surprisingly simple– almost embarrassingly honest.
I want to feel comfortable in my skin again.

How many people can relate to THAT? I bet hundreds, maybe even more.

So how can I do that?

Since I seemed completely incapable of making my own decisions, I tagged in my other half. Hubby told me I’m biting off too much (yes, that I knew– I asked you why?) and then told me to forget about it all, and do 12 weeks of insanity with him. In doing this I can stick to a program, have an accountability partner, incorporate that HIIT training I wanted, increase my stamina, quite possibly want to die throughout every workout, but most importantly–> I can track my results with little complications and start to feel like me again. Hum, start to feel like me again– that would ultimately lead to what it is I really want: to feel comfortable in my skin again.

We also decided that WE would use Sundays to prep our food for the week, that WE would get our food scale fixed, that WE would stock up on multivitamins, BCAAs, Protein, etc. For this journey, I think it’s important for me to remember that I’m part of a WE, and that I’m not in this alone. (After all HE did this to me — heh just kidding!)

Having a goal is SUPER important because it gives you that motivation, and keeps you focused on what you want, but sometimes you have to step back and really ask yourself what do you want?
If your goal is too vague, you can get lost on which path to take to get there
If your goal is too complicated, you can loose focus on what’s most important, and end up making zero progress

I was the latter of the two. Wanting too much, too fast and therefore getting NO where. They teach you in training to make S.M.A.R.T goals, I’d like to make a S.M.A.R.T goal that can K.I.S.S my …
Specific –> Want to commit to insanity for the full 12 weeks
Measurable–> Will track progress before, half way, and after.
Attainable (I’m changing to ACCOUNTABLE)–> touching base with my husband to keep me focused
Realistic –> It’s one program, 12 weeks, with my husband. I can do that.
Time Oriented–> 12 weeks is enough time to see progression

This goal can K.I.S.S myyy buttt! because I have remembered to Keep, It, Simple, Steph!

I start on Sunday.

Let the games begin.

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When You Battle the Voice Inside Your Head

Last night was tough. Earlier in the week I went to my first kickboxing class since I had the baby. It felt fantastic! I was so happy to be back, and of course I challenged myself to do exercises that I am not quite used to again… but it really felt amazing. Naturally, I have been sore since that class so I took the next day off to recover.. but anyone who’s ever done a REALLY good workout knows that it’s actually the second day off when you can barely move.

So yesterday, was my second day. It was my second day and emotionally I was feeling defeated. Looking at my post baby body I have been feeling frustrated, disappointed, and quite frankly: ugly. Silly, I know… but honest.  I felt tired, I felt sore, but mostly in my upper body in abdominal area–which clearly meant I was totally fine to do my lower body– or at least I thought.

Hubby and I went downstairs to set up for our workout, and I created my plan for leg day. Ugh. It was horrible. It was that kind of workout where my head fought every single movement that my body was doing. It felt like I should have had an angel and devil positioned on my shoulder whispering lies to me.

The first exercise that I wanted to try (since obviously the only thing to do when you’re already tired and feeling defeated is introduce new exercises, and increase your weights) was Ham curls on the TRX. I set the goal for 12 reps, and forced myself to do 4 sets. Why did I want to do 4 sets? Well, because that voice inside my head was telling me that 3 wouldn’t be enough to feel anything, so suck it up and do it. So, I would get to about 9 reps and want to cry. Not because it hurt, and not because it was hard– but yes it was hard. I wanted to cry because while I was doing the reps I had to battle the voice inside my head that was telling me each rep sucked. I was literally trying to ignore phrases like
“Why are you doing this?”
“That rep did nothing for you”
“Just quit, you’re never going to loose this baby weight”

It was awful. And it didn’t stop there. When I got to my deadlifts with the trap bar, I decided to add 10 lbs to each side. I honestly think I was getting so angry at myself that I would counter my negative comments by increasing the weight and working harder. I finished 3 sets, and there was that voice again:
“You know, you did 3 sets, you’re sweating… just stop there”

No. I wont stop there. Screw you, voice.

I have to say, I was so thankful to have my hubby there with me last night. There were so many times where I felt like I could have just crumbled and sat on the floor crying. But each time he saw me struggling, he would stop his set, come over and help me refocus and get back on track.

I’m realizing more and more that this journey to “get my body back” requires a lot of love and support of those around me. I find that there seems to be a faux timeline that I’m getting sucked into of when I should “fit into my regular pants”. It’s crap. I will fit into those pants when my body is ready to. I’m 7 weeks post baby and I have GOT to stop putting pressure on myself to be back so fast, because it will quite honestly hinder any progress that I’m working hard to achieve.

Ugh, that damn voice. It really needs to SHUT. UP.
fitness

A Shift in Perspective, and Body Position…and Weight….and…

When I started my serious fitness journey 3 years ago, I created a scrapbook. Part of it is the teacher in me who wanted the plan, got excited and ran out to buy all the materials to make the plan look pretty… and part of it was because my husband told me (with brutal honesty) that he didn’t think I would follow through. As much as that hurt to hear, I know that based on previous attempts to “get back on track” often faded off after a few weeks, and old routines came back.

So I created a scrapbook which consisted of 4 pages per month:
-Calendar to track daily physical activity
-Calendar to track what I was eating
-Monthly page dedicated to pictures to track my progress (unflattering angles and all)
-A comment page–> This page was the most important. You don’t always have positive workouts. In fact some days you can feel so discouraged that you want to quit. I thought if I was going to be successful, I knew I needed to write about the bad days as well. It would be a lie to only include those amazing days where I felt like I could take on anything. It’s looking back on the days where I felt tired, weak, and saw no results where I can take pride in saying that I pushed through and achieved my goals.

This scrapbook took me from September 2011 until September 2012, and I filled every page. On the comments page, I can remember adding in other accomplishments like “I went up from 10lbs to 15 lbs with my weights today!” Or “Today I bought a pair of shorts that were size Small! or Size 4!” and I would tape in the tag for my own validation. It had never felt so much pride in shopping for clothes, in sizes I had truly convinced myself I could never wear because I am a tall woman.

You can imagine the irony I felt when I went shopping a few weeks ago for a new one-piece bathing suit for lane swims at the community centre.

I’m not a stupid woman… of COURSE my body is going to change, and I’m going to gain weight. I am having a baby. And don’t think I haven’t heard all the comforting words from friends and family:
“Your baby needs to eat, so feed yourself!”
“Don’t be so hard on yourself, you’re having a baby!”
“You’re not getting fat, you’re PREGNANT!”

I still can’t help but laugh at the irony that only a few years ago I was taping new sizes into a scrapbook, and now I’m mortified when I pick up sizes to try them on. AND more overwhelmed, when the “guess” I make, thinking that’s a big enough gap, is either a snug fit or too small.

Oh well, I’ve slowly come to accept this change, and embrace it! I’m growing a human being inside of me. Aside from the SCI-FI component, this is quite possibly the most glorious experience I’ve ever had!

I’m in my third trimester now, and it is blowing me away the changes still occurring in this belly. My little lime is getting much bigger, and quickly!

I have my cousin’s wedding on Saturday, and last week I tried my dress on and it fit. Yesterday, however.. was a different story. Imagine my shock when I tried to put on the dress, and it would no longer zip all the way up. So I took it to the sweetest Nona, who smiled and said it would be an easy fix. Thank goodness for that! Not sure if my cousin would be happy with me walking down the aisle with a jacket on haha.

As these final months creep along, I keep reminding myself that part of the process is change in my body. The shift in my weight transfer, my body alignment, and yes… my sizes. I feel lucky to still be doing what I love. I can still workout, I’m feeling great… I just move slower. And for right now, all that is required of me is to provide a safe and healthy place for my baby to grow.

If that means I have to look a little further down on the rack… then bring it on.

Listening to Your Body.. Not the Critics

As I journey through this pregnancy, and have fully immersed myself into my second trimester– I’ve been feeling fantastic!

My energy levels have returned, and other than the little belly and added weight at the front of my abdomen, I have pretty much returned to my regular fitness routines. Of course, there are always modifications now, and the intensity is much different than I would normally bring to the table, but regardless I’m up to about 3-4 times a week for some sort of physical activity! 

Last Sunday I had a pretty exciting accomplishment. I ran in the Sportinglife 10K in downtown Toronto. I had mixed opinions from others about me participating in the run, but ultimately

it was up to me to listen to my body and make the decision about whether this was the best decision for me to do!

 

It was absolutely the most rewarding decision to run in this race. I was running with a friend of mine and naturally our paces were not well matched. Within the first 2K I could already tell that I needed to slow my pace down to maintain a safe heart rate, and could feel her pace getting ready to build with the adrenaline of other racers that surrounded us. I told her to continue without me, which she reluctantly agreed to, and with that– it was just me and my baby lime (who has graduated to a small cantaloupe) running together!

At the 5K mark I checked my time. Now, I’ve had to adjust to the fact that my time is much slower than usual, but I was very happy to see that I was at 35 minutes. With most physical activity, I find that it’s more of a mental game than physical. So

I told myself that I was doing amazing, gave little lime a loving rub and got ready to count down the last 5K.

At around 7K, I could feel myself starting to fatigue. There was a water station up ahead and I told myself that really– I had nothing to prove so it would be in my best interest to take a quick walk and enjoy the water break before continuing on. I’m an all-in kind of girl, so slowing down my pace and even walking for part of the run is a hard pill to swallow. But– let me tell you– it takes a stronger person to know when to listen to your body, rather than pushing through and ignoring possible problems. I sent my hubby a quick text and let him know that I was coming into my last couple kilometers. He sent me the motivation text that I needed, which helped me push through for the final stretch.

When I hit the 9K mark, I could feel myself finish that last kilometer with a huge grin on my face.

I had done it. I had listened to my body and successfully ran a 10K race with a tiny baby growing in my belly.

Crossing that finish line felt fabulous. Any negative comments I had been told, or recommendations to “just quit” if it was too hard were so far removed from me at that moment. I had started instilling healthy values that I feel will continue into the parenting of this young child, and hope will carry through into their own healthy choices for an active lifestyle further in the future.

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With any decision in life there are always those that will support you through lifes choices, and those that will try and deter you from what you want. I’m slowly discovering that as a mother-to-be there are many supporters of my choices to be physically active during pregnancy, and many that are unsure of my choices and seem to take my choices personally– as if it reflects poorly on their own pregnancies. 

I want to be clear. I don’t make these choices, write about my accomplishments and lack of “excuses” to continue this lifestyle for any other reason than to be proud of me. I don’t judge those who choose not to participate in these activities while pregnant. I can’t possibly judge a woman or pregnancy I know nothing about. I only know me. I only know what I am capable of doing, and what I know my body will let me achieve. If along the way it inspires someone who was unsure whether to take that route on her own pregnancy journey, then as a fitness professional I have done my job. 

Be safe, listen to your body above all the opinions of others. You will know what is right for you and your growing baby, but please remember– don’t be afraid to try! 

May’s Spotlight: Rosie Metayer

Meet Rosie! She’s a wonderful wife & mother of 3, and one hell of a personal trainer! I’ve have the privilege of being a client of Rosie’s in our boot camp, and now I work alongside her. She’s such a wonderful inspiration and GREAT motivator for those mothers out there who don’t believe it’s possible to be a great mother AND take care of yourself by pursuing your passions. Enjoy this interview, she’s a pretty spectacular woman!

 

rosieName: Rosie Metayer

Age: 39

Occupation: Personal Trainer Specialist

(Credentials:- PTS, FKS(Fitness Kickboxing Specialist)

Zumba Instructor –Level 1

What were you doing before you fell onto this path?

 I was a Commercial Insurance Broker


Would you say you were happy with what you were doing previously? Or was there something that was missing from your previous career path?

Let’s just say it wasn’t my dream job, I fell into the Insurance World and the money was good at the time and so you keep plugging away.  I moved companies a few times, and my last company was much smaller than those Alpha Broker Houses downtown that I worked at.  Working in a smaller office certainly had advantages but also some disadvantages.  Although it started very positive, I ended up not enjoying my job.

It seems we spend more time at work than we do at home, and when we put in extra time and come in on a weekend to get caught up, or to help with meeting a deadline and we leave our families behind, it is quite upsetting when there’s not any recognition of ones hard work.  Instead, there were words of sarcasm.  This was eating at me, deep down inside I knew where I wanted to be and that was in the FITNESS WORLD! This was my passion, this was what I loved.   I loved seeing people push themselves beyond imaginable limits and be healthy, I started to think seriously about departing and leaving the Insurance Broker role, I wasn’t happy, didn’t like how I was being treated, very unfairly and I knew this job was sucking the energy out of me! The energy that I love to have and push forward to my clients, but yet I still stuck it out. I continuously fought with myself, I was scared of making a move, I would say to myself “Is it the right time, 3 kids, expenses, financially can I do this?” I needed out and knew that I had my personal training to fall back on and I not only loved personal training because of how rewarding it was,  I was good at it too!

If you were happy with your current career, what was it about personal training and fitness that made you believe it was time to act on this interest & develop it into more than just a hobby?

The fact that I was Personal Training Go Girl Bootcamp already and knowing how much I have made a difference in many women lives and that I was being told on a continuous basis I was very motivating and inspiring, was making my decision to leave my full time job and fulfill this dream much easier. This wasn’t just a hobby for me. I had transformed my own body loosing my pregnancy weight; I was the living proof to many women in that bootcamp that I was a working mom, had 3 kids and was also personal training clients on a part time basis that, exercising was a lifestyle change, but so rewarding too! When you first start seeing those results on your body, it’s such an incredible feeling. The women I trained saw how this worked for me and my drive to get my results but also I was pushing them too.

I knew..once and for all this was it, this is where I wanted to be, in this space of Fitness, there was no other choice. I was going to make it work, it was time to push forward and just do it.


Had you had experience in an area like this before?

I didn’t’ have previous experience in doing Personal Training on a full time basis, but I did have experience with fitness. I guess deep down inside, what probably has been engraved in my head was seeing my dad being sick with heart disease as a child, and I often wondered how I could make a difference in the world with helping someone become healthier. I was always very active growing up as a child and teenager. I played many sports was captain of house league sports for a year. I took physical education throughout high school and one component of the program was to put a training circuit as well as a cardio routine. I did very well with this and I knew then this could be a possibility to get into this field of work. I also helped friends and family train.

Did you have a mentor/ role model whom you confided in as you ventured into this new territory? How did they help shape your decision to follow your passion/ how have they shaped your journey?

Yes I had a couple mentors who have influenced my decision to get into this field.

One is my good friend and trainer Essam Tossom, who I’ve known now for the last 7 years. I hired him as a trainer to give me the extra push, throughout our training circuits he would say that I was a natural, I had very good form and that I should consider getting into the Personal Training and Fitness World.  We would sometimes tag team personal train with other clients and trainers and he would be astonished at how I could motivate the other trainer’s clients.  “You are good” he would say.  I remember him also saying, it is so rewarding, especially when your clients push themselves and they too see that their hard work pays off.

The second mentor is my current employer, and mentor, Mr. Dan GO, known as the Ninja Man, from Go Girl Bootcamp.  At the time, I was just his client at his bootcamp, I was one of his first clients in the bootcamp world and I got amazing results after my second child was born! It didn’t come easy, I pushed it so hard in that bootcamp and did extra cardio on the side to get that body back.  Every so often Dan would pull me aside and say, “Have you ever considered being a trainer, damn you are good! you bring so much energy to the room and you inspire and push all those women around you during the workout– consider it” he would say.
Dan is a great guy, he knew I wanted a hardcore workout and would always throw things at me to go over and beyond the normal workouts…I loved it!  He planted the seed with the thought that I should consider getting into personal training, and from there I thought about this every day.  In fact, I almost quit my job and not go back to work from maternity leave, but again, I didn’t feel ready, or was I hiding from the fact I was scared of failing?  Well the thought would always enter my mind, in the mean time I ended up getting pregnant with my 3rd child. Now the Personal Training thing was on my mind again, this time I knew that as soon as I had my baby, I was going to get my body back ASAP, I continued to workout with Dan at the bootcamp and went back to my full time job, and every so often Dan would put me on the spot in bootcamp, and would ask me to share my story, of my body transformation and at the same time I had people saying to me, “you should be a trainer, your energy is so good, you helped me push today through class, seeing you not giving up made me get another rep in, you inspired me”  I would keep hearing this every time I went to bootcamp, I had ladies that wanted to be in my group because they felt they wouldn’t quite in the circuit because they were with me.

This was incredible, that I could actually make such a difference in these ladies lives! I still had the feeling of failing, failing the exam, failing myself to not have that perfect body image I had visualized, but really deep down inside, I knew I had what it took to bite the bullet and just go for it.

Together with Dan Go and Linda Watson (Personal Trainer and Franchise owner Of Ilovekickboxing.com) they kept planting that seed, and would say “Why are you hesitating, you are good at what you do- just do it!”

Many books that I’ve been reading talk about discovering your happiness in life, and the easiest way to start is to look back at what you were interested in as a child. Did you ever play games/ participate in activities related to this field?

Yes I always played games and was very active as a child, sort of like a tom boy. Even the simplest of games, like hopscotch, would turn into an athletic hop.  I often thought that I wanted to be fit because my dad was a diabetic and passed away with a heart attack, so I wanted to make sure that I was always fit.

What were some of the challenges you faced when deciding to follow your passion & pursue this dream?

The biggest challenge is financially, it’s scary when you are used to a certain income and lifestyle. I almost felt silly and selfish leaving a good paying job to be a trainer. It’s tough to have your own business, but I feel now that this is my space I can make this happen.


Do you have any advice to other women who are possibly on the fence with following their own directions?

My advice would be to at least TRY following your dreams and passion.  If you don’t try, you would never know if you could succeed, or where you would be in a couple of years.

For myself, I use this perspective: it’s like making a drastic hair colour or hair style change. Chop off your hair, the hair will grow back eventually right? I looked at it as this is my opportunity to try this Personal Training Full Time and to make a difference in peoples lives, and if “financially” I can’t make things work for me and my family, well then it’s just like hair– “it” grows back. I can go back to work full time or part time and still do what I love. But my point is, as scary as it is, sometimes we need to take risks, and those risks we take we will encounter big hills and small ones, sometimes even a bumpy road to travel, but we need those hills to allow us to make mistakes and learn from them.  You become a better person and are true to yourself.

I urge one to try to follow your dream and give it your 100% all of everything you have to make it work, if this is where you truly want to be!  I haven’t looked back since 4 months ago, when this happened to me!

Looking back, is there anything that you may have changed that you think would have helped you get on this path sooner?

No, I don’t think I would change anything, I believe everything happened for a reason, and at the right time.  I also needed to be ready physically and mentally to be able to go on this journey.  It is now that I’m able to deliver the amazing  workouts that I do, I  am more experienced, I know what works, I know what can get people moving and I am confident at what I do….because it truly comes from my heart.

Where do you see this passion growing to over the next 5 years? And 10?

I see myself in the next 5 years, still working along side Dan GO at Go Girl Bootcamp and at Nox as a Fitness Kickboxing Instructor.  I’m slowly building my own clientele in addition to the bootcamp and eventually I would love to have my own facility not only working with women, but work with teenagers and give them a place for them to turn to. I want to promote healthiness and hopefully I can be a role model of having fun, but living a healthy lifestyle too.

Where can someone find more information about your company/ career choice?

At present I am registering my company name-.COMING SOON!

In the meantime, if you would like personal training sessions, I can be reached at: Rosie16@rogers.com or facebook message me.

Thank you so much for taking the time to answer these questions! It’s so important for women to read about other women who have found success in the activities they love. Do you have anything else you’d like to add to our discussion?

Thank you Stephanie for selecting me as your feature, this has motivated me some more, and has made me realize how much more I have made the right choice to follow my dream!

kickboxingrosie 2bootcamp