fitness

How To Set Goals and Achieve Them

“The victory of success is half won when one gains the habit of setting and achieving goals”. – Og Mandino

If there is one thing I’ve learned about being in a fitness community, it is that it is constantly changing. There are so many different schools of thought and it is often hard to keep up with. Did you hear that a high fat diet is now a good thing? Anyway, as we change and adapt to these new thought processes, so do our goals. Whether it’s to bulk, or cut, lose weight, gain weight, whatever it is, you can apply the same rules.

I am constantly setting new goals to improve myself. Not just in fitness, but in every aspect of life. In doing this, I have noticed that when one area of your life starts to take shape, the rest of your goals become easier to achieve.

For example, I recently completed a 21 day fitness challenge with a group of ladies. Since we all are being held accountable by each other, we become much better about controlling our instincts. I consistently notice myself wanting ice cream after dinner less and less until one day, I don’t even think about it. Then I realize, “wow. I accomplished something big!”. It’s such a great feeling and I began to crave it. Then I started to think about other goals I had for myself. Saving money. Not fitness related, but a goal all the same. So I went to my husband and told him I didn’t want to spend any money on coffee for a week. For those of you that know me well, you know how much of a struggle this would be for me. I went a week and a half, you guys *insert happy dance here*.

So how you do you start? The first step seems simple, but can often be the hardest one! You ready? Here it is…

Step 1: Define your goal. Where do you see yourself next year? It is so easy to get caught up in what is happening right NOW that we forget to ask ourselves this question (or you could just be extremely impatient like me). Really think about this question. Do you want to feel comfortable in a bikini at the beach? Do you want to buy your first home? Whatever it is, write it down and keep it in a place you will see it often like your bathroom mirror….or if you’re like me and you’re honest with yourself, your refrigerator door.

Step 2: Start small, but be precise. A lot of times when I set a goal for myself, I am so eager to just go all in and give 110%. That’s an easy way to get burned out fast. Did you notice that my goals above were small? Stop eating ice cream after dinner, don’t buy coffee for a week… they are small and precise. Setting a small goal makes you realize that you can do hard things and makes you next goal not look so intimidating. Do not set goals like “I want to drink less diet coke”, say “I will drink 1 diet coke a week”. When you say I want to drink less diet coke, that becomes a relative term and doesn’t help you consistently get better.

Step 3: Know your weaknesses. I used to work a stressful retail job and every night when I got home, I would eat an entire bag of potato chips to cope. Not a great habit for many reasons, but it wasn’t great for my weight loss goal especially. I knew that if I had potato chips at home, I would eat them because, let’s be real, you can’t just eat a few potato chips. So what did I do? I stopped buying potato chips. I realized that I still wanted something salty and crunchy, so I switched to almonds. It did the trick! What is your bag of potato chips? Remove it from your sight!

Step 4: Challenge yourself. What’s that quote I keep seeing on coffee mugs? “Change begins at the end of your comfort zone”? Yeah that’s the one. It’s true. Once you’ve conquered all of your small goals, it will be time to accomplish some big ones, but you’ll be ready for it! Know why? Because you’ve been practicing for them this whole time!

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coffee, fitness

National Coffee Day’s Finest Contributor

Some of you have heard me say this, but I am a major coffee snob. I absolutely refuse to drink coffee from gas stations, hotels, McDonald’s… you see my point.

Not only am I a snob, I’m hopelessly addicted. Like…drink at least 3 cups a day and get a headache by 9am if I skip that first cup. It’s not just that though, it calms me.

My coffee addiction came at a young age. My dad started a tradition as long ago as I can remember to take me to get coffee on weekends (I started with orange juice to ease into it of course). Even after I was much older and moved out, he has always made time to do this. Sometimes it’s just quick catch up sessions, and other times it’s like $200 an hour therapy. I have a great dad, guys.

Anyway, I’m addicted. I’ve been getting by with Green Mountain Coffee….and by getting by, I mean have it on autoship from Amazon, but anyway, I found this new brand the other day and I can’t wait to tell you about it.

It’s called http://coffeeovercardio.com. And you guys, the things I would give to have thought of this myself would blow your minds. This brand is all about “boss babes focused on self growth, business, and booty growth”…..aka THE DREAM.

It sounded too good to be true, but I ordered it anyway and I was not disappointed. This coffee is like nothing I have ever tasted. It’s smooth, full of body, aromatic….everything you want in a coffee. Did I mention they have an organic option? This coffee is the whole package.

After buying all 4 flavors, my favorite is Flourish. It’s an organic, medium blend, and roasted to order so that it stays fresh. It’s the perfect morning coffee to get your day started. This is NOT the coffee that you have to add 5 splenda and 6 creams to just so it doesn’t taste like water.

I want to say that I am absolutely not being paid in any way to talk to you guys about this coffee. I just love the message and the product. I did, however, become a “Barista Babe”. What does that mean? You get to use code 10fitasamother to get a discount on your purchase. Try it out and let me know what you think in the comments! You won’t be sorry.

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Why I Became A Beachbody Coach

I remember when I first started using Beachbody programs and people made SO MANY JOKES, “what do you do? Just dance in front of your television?”, “Julia can’t eat anything but broccoli because she’s trying to get a ‘beach body'”.

Here’s the thing, I am the first person to call BS on ANYTHING…..but these programs have truly changed my whole lifestyle. I went from laughing when my husband asked me to workout with him to …..actually wanting to workout. Daily.

Here are a few reasons why I believe in Beachbody:

1). The meal plans are NOT a diet. This is what got me first. If you’ve read any of my other posts, you know how I feel about dieting. Long story short, I hate it. Anyway, Beachbody uses a portion control system and gives you TONS of options of what to eat, just not overeat. I honestly didn’t know I was overeating (…which I should have because I would easily eat a bag of potato chips on my own, but…let’s not dwell on that)! It also gives you categories of food that you have to eat each day. It made me realize that I did not eat enough fruits, vegetables, or even healthy fats.

2). It improved my mental health. I believe that a lot of people that have weight issues struggle with their mental health. I, for one, have always turned to food as a source of comfort when things went wrong. As a recovering perfectionist….a lot always seemed to go wrong. Working out is not just about changing your body, it truly changes your mind. I never thought I could lift weights. I never thought I could do push ups or have definition in my arms and abs. You may have heard the phrase, “your body achieves what your mind believes” – it’s true! Say you won’t, you can’t. Say you can, you WILL. Working out has proved that I can do things that I thought I couldn’t.

3). Workout plans for all levels. Most people think of Beachbody and think of INSANITY and P90x. While those are great workout programs, they are INTENSE. I definitely could not have done those back when I was using 2lb weights for bicep curls. They have HUNDREDS of workouts ranging from yoga to kickboxing…and you can do them anywhere! My favorite spot right now is in my kitchen.

Have you ever thought that you couldn’t workout because it just isn’t the time? You want to get your eating right first or join a gym and try a few smaller workouts? I’m here to tell you to stop the excuses. There is no time like right now. Imagine where you could be 3 months from now if you start today. If I can do this, anyone can.

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5 Ways Confident People Live Differently

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This has been weighing heavy on my mind lately. The fitness world is a hard place to exist in. It is easier now than ever to see what your ideal body would look like or to compare yourself to others. I will be the first to admit that I am guilty.

As someone who has always struggled with self confidence and body dysmorphia, you may wonder why I would be the one that is able to talk about this. But here’s the thing, I have the inside scoop. As a classic Virgo, I internalize and over process everything. Though this can be exhausting, it also makes me extremely self aware.

It is normal to have moments of doubt. Everyone goes through ups and downs. In my mission to become the best version of myself, I first have to ask “what is holding me back from being truly happy?”

I’ve been reading “Girl, Wash Your Face” by Rachel Hollis. Within the first two chapters, she says:

“If you’re unhappy, that’s on you.”

That hit home for me. I am not in control of what people say to me, but I am in control of how I react and process other’s words and actions.

So what now? If I truly want to be my best self, that means being 100% comfortable with who I am, so what am I missing? I’ve done some research on the difference between confident people and ones who consider themselves…well…less than. And here is what I’ve found.

  1. An article on Lifehack explains that highly confident people do not make excuses. They don’t blame traffic for being late to work, they were late to work! They take ownership of their actions.
  2. They don’t let fear control their lives. This is a big one for me. I have let anxiety get in the way more times than I would like to admit. I even got a tattoo to remind myself to “live free”, but let’s be real, that tattoo doesn’t make me want to ride a rollercoaster or have a confrontational conversation.
  3. They don’t obsess over other’s opinions. Someone made a comment that your boobs are small? Um okay, guess what? YOU CAN’T CHANGE THAT. And you shouldn’t want to. I would love to spend years talking about women taking pride in their bodies, but that’s for another post. Your grandparents don’t approve of your choice to not go to college? SO WHAT. It is your life, you need to live it. Confidence comes when you are comfortable with the choices you make. You should not make choices for other people, you make them for you. Which brings me to my next point…
  4. Confident people do not find joy in pleasing others. Listen to me, I do not mean that you need to be selfish. I’m talking about the kind of people pleasing that gets in your way. The kind where you put aside your own happiness to make someone else have a better opinion of you. The kind where you let people change your mind! The kind where you won’t choose a place to eat, you accept any invitation, or you are constantly working hard to prove yourself.
  5. Lastly, they don’t make comparisons. I want to say first that social media makes this very difficult. It is so easy to make it appear that you have a perfect life when nobody knows what is going on behind the scenes. As far as fitness goes, it can get unhealthy so fast. I recently have decided that I will unfollow people who I compare myself to. I may love their page! But our lives are too different for me to aspire to be what they are.

What are your thoughts? What is one thing you can change today that will help you become more confident in the future?

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The Instagram Fitness World

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I recently created a fitness profile on Instagram (@fit.asamother) and in the month or so that I have had it, I have learned a lot about people.

This will probably make me sound like an 80yr old woman finding out that any kind of social media platform even exists, but I’m willing to take that risk. I joined Instagram to find a group of likeminded people. I want to see what they’re doing, we can all motivate each other, and just create a support group. However, Instagram is much more superficial than that. A lot of you are probably nodding your head like “duh. It’s a profile made of 99% selfies”. Okay, I get it, but…..well let me give you some scenarios just from this past week:

  • This guy direct messages me: “wow, you’re a mom and you workout. How do you have time to get a body like that?” I don’t respond. “Have any tips on how to get abs?”…before I can even THINK to respond, *sends shirtless pic of shredded abs*. I can’t even eye roll enough to get across how I’m feeling.
  • Guy DMs me: “I sent you a request because you are a very beautiful woman and seem to be a very nice person that I would like to know more about, God has a reason for all purpose, Are you single?” *gives me an email address*, “drop me a message and I will get back to you asap. baby please don’t share my number with anyone.. Kisses & Hugs for you!!!” …….I’m not even going to comment.
  • Guy DMs me: “have you ever let anyone photograph you before?
  • Every girl on IG that sends a DM: “Hey! Just noticed your profile and it’s so inspiring and motivational. Are you a coach? You should be with results like that!”

So…. these kinds of messages disturb me for a few reasons. I had to come to terms with the fact that most guys are following #fitgirlsofig just because they find them attractive. Not out of respect for what they are doing or what they have done, but for the hope that they will post a lot of good booty pics. Girls follow a lot of people just so they could potentially be clients of theirs. I do respect what coaches are trying to do. Would I love to make money on Instagram? Um yes please, I just thought it could also be a place to find genuine people with similar interests. Don’t get me wrong! There are some, but they are few and far between.

Again, this may only be surprising to me, but it did stop to make me think. It’s not even surprising….it’s that it has made me become a little jaded. As soon as someone messages me, it’s like when you see that mom at the mall with their kid that keeps poking them, “mom. Hey mom? Mom. Mom. Hey mom?” and she finally snaps, “WHAT?!” Someone DMs me, “WHAT?!”

Has anyone else experienced this? I’m interested in hearing your thoughts!