? ??????????????????? ????Easy Install Instructions:???1. Copy the Code??2. Log in to your Blogger account
and go to "Manage Layout" from the Blogger Dashboard??3. Click on the "Edit HTML" tab.??4. Delete the code already in the "Edit Template" box and paste the new code in.??5. Click "S BLOGGER TEMPLATES AND TWITTER BACKGROUNDS ?

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

I know I have said that I will continue to post... but man, Blogging is hard! I just forget to do it. I am sure that I have a boat load of stuff to say, but I just forget to "Blog" it.

I also will re-post some of the old stuff that was on my old site.

Marking the year anniversary of his passing, here is a little somthing I wrote after a conversation that I had with Charles "MASK" Lewis back in 2005.

Being competitive athletes we constantly hear people talk about 'motivation' and what drives them. We listen to people day in and day out giving their two cents on what we can do to achieve our goals and what we should rely on for motivation. While I value the opinion, as I'm sure you do, of everyone who wants to 'help', it is not all that often that someone says something that I either haven't heard already or truly settles in my mind and makes me really stop and think. I'm not talking about 'motivational quotes', as we all know I am big on that, but someone who says something that challenges you to dig deep. To look inside yourself.

Has someone ever said something to you and it seems to settle into an empty place inside you, that maybe you didn't know was empty? Has someone shared words that, although you had never verbalized them yourself you thought "Aha! That's how I feel!" Or "That is what I was trying to say?!" Some people have the natural born ability to do that; interpret feelings into words or to simply motivate. They may motivate you by telling you their "story" and what they learned and got out of their experience. Or just by being so charismatic and excited about their own goals, whatever they may be. Have you heard a story so inspirational that you could apply the same train of thought to your own life and you are able to draw on that person or their story each time you were unable to find your own motivation?

I recently had a conversation with someone who, in my opinion, by their own right is amazing. This person played by life's "rules", and lived the "norm". Marines, College, Professional Career, etc. And one day with an alternative vision in mind, decided "Nah, this isn't for me." And went ahead to pursue dreams… dreams that weren't the 'norm', dreams that people around him, even the ones who by family default should have supported, turned their noses up at. Being told that he couldn't/shouldn't do it, and it was a complete risk, went ahead and did it anyway. Why? Because he was passionate about it, and he believed not only in his vision, but in himself. A quality that everyone should be so lucky to possess.

As he chronicled the events of his journey, and his struggles through the lows and disappointments of pursuing his highest aspirations I found myself completely rapt in his story. More so, than the story itself, but I was utterly intrigued by his outlook, enthusiasm and perseverance on his road to accomplishing what he set out to do.

As well as humbled, upon hearing about the sacrifices he was willing to make along the way. He sat with visible tears in his eyes replaying how even when shooting for the stars and not hitting them the first, second, and even the third times, he refused to become discouraged. It only made him try harder, as he was determined to prove to himself and to everyone else, that he undoubtedly would achieve what he had set out to do. He was coming closer still with every small accomplishment all the while still shooting straight up and keeping his sights set on the "Big Picture", which of course, had grown and grown. If in the end of his quest he didn't accomplish what he set out to do, no one could ever say he didn't try and more importantly, no one could ever say he failed. Consequently, he did accomplish what he set out to do and then some. He is still on his quest of success, and his horizons are broader by the day. Now instead of shooting for the stars, he is shooting higher and further.

Within the same conversation we discussed fitness and goals within the support. I explained the preparation, the training, subjectivity of the sport, and how you just never know who is going to show up the day of the show and what 'package' they will bring. All you can do is prepare yourself to the best of your ability and hope that it works out in your favor and you place well. "F@$K that!" he said "Why even bother competing, if that is your attitude?! Why not just work out and look good, and not worry about all this other stuff like suits and routines and show times?" What? I had to stop and think about what he just said. Then I got it. Although someone else may hear this statement and it may mean nothing, for me it was a 'light bulb' moment. I don't know if it's because of the context that it was put in, the enthusiasm and the encouragement it was said with, or this amazing and successful person that was relaying it, but it hit me, and it stuck. While I don't completely agree with the statement because I truly just love to compete, I completely understood the point he was making. He continued on saying "You shouldn't even be concerned with who is showing up that day… your biggest competitor is yourself. Every time you walk into that gym you should compete with yourself. You should be your own biggest competition." Although I have heard this uttered in different variations before, this time it came at me blind side and it stuck. It stuck somewhere deep inside me, and I use this conversation that has so subtly made a place for itself in the back of my conscience… to call on when I feel that I need that extra motivation.

At the end of my conversation with him, I said "Now what are you shooting for?" His answer….. "People ask me where I am going now, and I say 'Pluto'. Damn Mutha F&@ckers already walked on the Moon, and hell, people even touched on Mars. I'm going where no one has been." And with that… the conversation was over.

Although there is no real 'point' to my story. I just wanted to share with you the fact that motivation comes from all around. Whether you are preparing for a fitness competition, setting out on an uncharted path in your life, or just trying something new, you will undoubtedly run into a wall at one point or another. You will need to find some external motivation. So be aware in your daily interactions. And the next time you need to draw on yourself for motivation, I encourage you to dig deep. You just never know what you may find.

RIP ~Charles "Mask" Lewis 1963~2009

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Who Needs Validation?

“No one can make you feel inferior without your permission.” ~Eleanor Roosevelt

Over and over again I hear it from fellow competitors and girls that I train, “…I just can’t concentrate… my head isn’t in the game… I have too much going on…” and too often than not it has to do with a guy. Whether it be someone they just started dating, a long term boyfriend, and sometimes even husbands, there are many guys out there that aren’t supportive and view Fitness/Figure as a distraction and as ‘something’ that takes away from their time or plan. Trust me, I understand that this is sometimes a selfish sport, as countless hours are spent in the gym, preparing food, and the prohibiting of being able to eat out or attend certain functions. There are definitely compromises that need to be made from both sides, however, I am also the first person to say “Deal with it… this is me, and what makes me happy…. Take it or leave it.”

I have seen girls give up when they are so close, or just not put 100% into a goal that they have set for themselves all due to outside forces either being unsupportive or better yet, being made to feel that what they were doing was ‘stupid’, ‘silly’, not worth the effort, or something of the like.

In past years, I have had more clients than I care to remember drop out of shows due to “man issues’. (Realize, that this is not the same as ‘family issues’ and other circumstances that take priority over goals, etc.) Now, if I tell you that I have never had ‘issues’ or times when I thought that I just couldn’t mentally handle it, it would be a lie. But I some how was able to dig deep and realize that I was doing this (Whatever your goal may be) for a reason… ummmm, cause it’s what I want to be doing. So why stop? Why not complete the journey that I have set out for myself? Because someone else doesn’t agree with it? I don’t think so!! I’ve pleaded with girls to say “EFF” them… it’s about me, and if he can’t handle it, then too bad. Move on… go forward. But for whatever reason there are girls who let these men make them feel like what they were doing (whether it be competing or anything else) that they were less than adequate. Or for some reason or another were waiting on validation from other people that they are worthy enough of their companionship and will do anything to please them, even give up on their aspirations or act in a way they normally wouldn’t just for that validation. Almost to the point of becoming diluted versions of themselves! Let me say this… GET OFF THE path to get corroboration from the people around you and return to your own journey. Do not become a passenger of someone else’s and instead be happy being who you are. Girls….Be you… trust me… in the end, you’ll be much happier, and when these guys are gone, you’ll still know who you are! Do not allow yourself to be subjected to these people that are clearly not supportive. By not supporting you or putting your efforts or goals down they are calling themselves out. Realize it, and move on, you are better than that.

So to all you AWESOME women out there who have been or are in a relationship like this… I say this... Embrace yourself and every step of your journey that you take, fitness and otherwise. Love yourself and respect yourself enough to know that you deserve nothing but the very best. Make all your own choices, because in the end YOU have to live with you. Please, just commit yourself to being the magnificent women that you are.

“But the most exciting, challenging and significant relationship of all is the one you have with yourself. And if you find someone to love the you you love, well, that's just fabulous.” ~ Carrie, Sex in the City

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Thanks to everyone for checking out my new site and for the emails letting me know that you like it! I have been sent a couple of messages about some of the 'thoughts' and 'stories' on my old site. I will repost some of them, edit others and give you a revision, and simple press 'delete' to a couple of others as they are old and are simply not relevant in how I feel or think anymore.

It is so funny to me how as each year passes our thoughts, views and dreams take different paths... all the while we never seem to run off course. Well, I don't anyway. I just go with the flow and where life leads me. For instance, had you asked me 3 years ago where I would be today... I probably wouldn't have answered "...married and floating on Cloud 9". BUT, that is exactly where I am, and wouldn't change the path that brought me here for anything in the world.

Keep your heart and your eyes open, you never know what you will find.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Fitness Myths

UGH! My iPod died at the gym! I can’t believe I forgot to recharge it! Extremely frustrating for sure! Honestly, my iPod is like a security blanket in the gym. If for some reason I ever forgot it, I would turn around and go back to get it before I would train without it. (Note to self.. maybe I will keep an extra iPod in my gym bag…)

Anyway, while training with NO MUSIC, I was privy to a conversation that was taking place between a couple of young guys who are new to the gym. Without going into the entire banter one of the exchanges that I heard was “Dude, I am totally going to McDonalds when I leave here.” The other one replied “Isn’t that stuff bad for us?” without missing a beat the first kid said “Look how hard we just worked out, and besides, I’m trying to gain weight anyway, it doesn’t matter what I eat.”

While this may be a bit true for a 20 year old kid, in general that is a “Fitness Myth”.
Just because you workout hard and often does not mean that you can eat more cheat foods or drink more alcohol! Working out hard and adding muscle to your physique while eating a bunch of ‘junk’ will only force your body to store fat and appear larger than it already is…. And give you no added muscle definition!

Here are a couple of other “Fitness Myths”…

“If I stop working out, my muscle will turn into fat”. Or “I am going to start working out and turn my fat into muscle.” Fat and muscle are two different tissues. Therefore, one cannot turn into the other anymore than an apple can turn into an orange. Building muscle and burning fat are two different processes. The combined effect of building muscle and losing fat may seem as though you're turning fat into muscle, but that is just an illusion. Just as if you stop working out your muscles may atrophy over time, and fat may take its place, however your muscle has not turned into fat.

”How do I lose weight in my butt?” I hate to tell you, but you cannot reduce the body fat in only 1 specific part of your body. You can however, reduce the fat throughout your entire body by adopting a good exercise regimine and clean eating habits. This will cause the specific area you wanted to initially lose fat in, to look how you would like it to.

I hope these couple of ‘truths’ helped to clarify any misleading information that you have heard! Until next time…. H