Modify?!? Does that make me a failure?

I was going to post this in Facebook, but I sometimes think that long FB posts get skimmed over, so I figured a blog would be best.

Here is the picture that prompted today’s post. 🙂

sponge bob insanity

Maybe a bit much to get the giggles, but if he kept moving, didn’t give up, and got through the workout, then he did a good job!

Here are some of my views on Modifying:

First, the word ‘modify’ is NOT a dirty word in the fitness world!  In fact, in my opinion, and in the opinions of MANY trainers and coaches way smarter and more experienced than I, modifying will help you learn better form and use the muscle you are working to its fullest potential, which in turn leads to the BEST quality workout!

Second, taking a break does NOT make you a failure!  If you are just starting your journey to a healthier and fit lifestyle, new to the workout, coming back from injury, or sometimes just having an “off” day, more breaks may be needed to make it through to the end.  Just try to keep moving if you can while you catch your breath.  Even if it is just a light march in place.

AND Third!  This one could be the MOST important!  IF you are a beginner or you are coming back from injury, or simply have one muscle group that is not as strong and needs to be slowly built up….DO THE MODIFICATION!  For Example….There is no shame in doing push ups on your knees!   This one is hard for me, because I could do perfect military style push ups before I hurt my shoulder.  But I need to build my strength back up and stop pushing it too fast.  So it is NOT just beginners, all of us need to use modifications some times.

Modifications help you perfect your form.  In fact, I believe that sometimes doing the modification of an exercise actually helps me slow down and concentrate on the muscles I am using.  Sometimes you get to the point that you start swinging weights, or just going through the motions.  And doing 50 squats in 30 seconds is NOT a good thing if you are doing them sloppy and with poor form.

Since becoming a Beachbody Coach, I hear excuses all the time like, “I can’t do that!” or “That program is too advanced for me.”  or “I couldn’t keep up with that!” or “I can’t do (fill in the blank), I am too uncoordinated!”  First of all, how do you KNOW any of that if you don’t try?  And second, there is ALWAYS a modification for EVERYTHING!  If you can’t figure it out, ASK!  There is always something different you can do if a certain move bothers you.

For instance, I since I have a lumbar fusion in my back, while doing acro yoga yesterday, one of the moves was flying whale.  I can be the base for whale, but I am not comfortable having someone’s feet in my lower back, but here are my friends Mahala and Shari doing and AWESOME job at it! 🙂

mahala and shari flying whale


But I will say acro yoga is REALLY helping me with my trust issues.  Several weeks ago, I let Mahala the instructor talk me into letting her fly me.  Here is the picture taken for PROOF!  LOL!

me flying

And yesterday, I let both my friends, Gloria and Mr Bentley fly me!  I am getting there! 🙂

So, get over your “I have to be PERFECT to start!” mentality!  Take that first step!  And as always…..

MAKE today GREAT!!!


5 YEARS!?!?!

WOW!  With all that has been going on this week, I almost missed my 5 Year Journey to Fitness Anniversary!

I can not believe it has been 5 years since I started my journey to get healthy.  But more than that, I can’t believe 5 years ago I weighed over 100# MORE than I do right now.  Over the past several months, I have had some trials and ERRORS, but all in all, I am STILL a success story!  I have kept off 100# for almost 4 years now.

I want to take this moment to thank EVERYONE who has supported me, believed in me, and helped me in any way to make my dream of living a healthy lifestyle my REALITY!  I may have done all the work, and put forth all the blood, sweat, and tears, but without you all, I may have given up on myself.  I never felt worthy of having wonderful things in my life.  So I would do anything I could to  make sure I didn’t!  The negativity I used to put into the world, came back on me continuously.  Sure, I had a wonderful husband and family who love me, but I had even pushed and the few friends that I did have away by choosing my negative addictive existence over them.  But along this journey, I have found my way back to enjoying company of people over a toxic lifestyle again.   I have made an effort to make friends who have the same interests as I do.  People who also want to be fit and healthy and live a FULL life.

I admit that am still a bit of homebody, which helps explain why Beachbody was such a great fit for me, but I also treasure my time with my friends and have found a true love in Group Training.  Whether it be teaching or taking Zumba and FIT classes at Legacy Martial Arts or doing the Body By Brenda Workouts in the park.  I love seeing people enjoy fitness and people believing in me enough to allow me to be able to be part of that.

Hard to believe that a person who consumed as much alcohol and Rx pain killers as I did to numb out my life would now be the one who not only celebrates each and every moment of life, but want to help others find their path and do the same.  Speaking of my old vices….it has also been almost 5 years since I had my last cigarette!   Remembering back to September thru December 2008, I was SO determined!  I had failed so many times.  Work hard for a week or so, and then BOOM!  There comes the weekend.  Or a holiday.  Or a party.  Always an excuse to eat bad foods and drink LOTS of alcohol.  Heck, back then, a Tuesday was a good enough reason for that! 😛  My how things have changed.

before during after

Illness and injury have been a big part of this year so far, but I am working to get back on MY schedule.  The one that just “works” for me.  And then I have some new goals in mind.  But first, I am aiming to get back to the girl in this 3rd pic.  I have put on about 18#, and look more like the 2nd one now, but I will NEVER sell myself short!  I know I can do it!  I HAVE DONE IT!  I REFUSE TO GIVE UP!!!

055 - Copy-1

Who’s with me???  Who is NOT willing to put off their BEST SELF any longer?  Who does NOT want to wait until January 1st?  I am starting a new Beachbody ANY PROGRAM Challenge on September 30th.  You must be willing to invest in yourself and commit to the program and group.  One meal or snack replacement each day with Shakeology, and Push Play on your Beachbody program of choice for the duration which it is designed, whether it is one you already own or a Challenge Pack that you buy today.  Contact me on my Facebook Body By Brenda or email me at  OR you can go straight to my site and check out the programs at .

You don’t need a New Year to resolve to make your life better.  You just need tomorrow.

MAKE today GREAT!!!


I have been obsessed with Katy Perry’s song Roar since I first heard it.  I even HAD to choreograph a Zumba warm up routine to it.  The words just really resonate with me.  It is SO ME!  I spent many years of my life being obese and a closet heavy drinker, so I hid from the world a lot.  I did not want people to see Me.  I also lived my life very quiet and small.  I felt my opinion was very insignificant to the world.  Many times when I did have an opinion, I kept it to myself, out of pure fear that if I did stand up and speak, that would mean someone would have to look at me.  

It has taken a lot of work.  A lot of soul searching.  A lot of digging deep.  But as I lost the weight and gained some confidence, I found that I wanted MORE! So I work and fight to find more every day.  I want to be someone that people want to listen to.  I want to help others reach for their goals.  And I WANT to do it LOUDLY!!!


I am the Champion of MY LIFE!  Why shouldn’t I Roar?

Make a concerted effort EVERY DAY to be your very best YOU!  That is all we can do in life.  Striving for perfection is going to leave you only with heartache!  Even when you ARE perfect to someone else, you, as your WORST critic, will never be perfect in your own eyes anyway!  It is a losing battle.  Strive for PROGRESS!  Make today a little better than yesterday.  And when it isn’t, and there WILL be days like that, get back up dust yourself off and ROAR!  This is YOUR LIFE!  Only YOU can change it!  Do your best, WHATEVER that is for that day, and just keep moving FORWARD!  

The past is over!  

The time of biting our tongues is over!

It is time to ROAR!

African Lion Roaring Animal Model



I know it has been a long time.  A lot going on in my personal life right now.  If you follow me on FB, you know it has been a struggle for me.  But I keep fighting.  Stress has me frustrated and gaining weight!   UGH! I am trying to re-focus starting today.

But today I want to talk about FEAR.

Are you wanting to start on your journey to your fittest you, but you are scared to start? Fear of failure keeping you sitting on the sidelines? Thinking to yourself, “I want to __________, but I am just not strong, smart, coordinated, etc. enough.”


5 years ago today, I weighed OVER 275# and have been morbidly obese for more of my life than not ! I was drinking EVERY night! Smoking 1.5-2 packs of cigarettes every day! I was pre-diabetic, had high BP, and my cholesterol was…well, to be honest, I think it read GRAVY! I have titanium bolts holding my lower back together.  I have things in my past that have left me feeling COMPLETELY WORTHLESS TO HUMANITY!  I live in a town whose population is about 400!  And we live paycheck to paycheck!

So, did I think I could get healthy and fit on my own, was a stretch by itself. But to think that one day I might inspire, motivate, and even help and coach others on their paths would have never even crossed my mind.

NOW? Now it is my biggest dream and greatest joy in life. Whether it be through classes I am teaching, a workout I designed, or through being a Beachbody Coach, or just talking to someone about nutrition, exercise, or finding their confidence and self worth, I feel I am doing what I am meant to do.

This post was brought to you by my friend and fellow Beachbody coach, Andy, after he posted one of my favorite Twain quotes this morning~

“Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines, sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.” -Mark Twain

So don’t live your life in fear of failure. You will regret NEVER doing things you wish you had than doing them and failing. And if you keep working, there is no failing. You are ALWAYS a work in progress. I may feel “blah” at times, but I KNOW I am not a failure. I am just an unfinished masterpiece! 🙂

MAKE today GREAT!!!

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