I Reached My GOAL! NOW WHAT???

I get that A LOT!

And this week, I was asked to touch on the subject by Oscar Insurace, who provides health care¬†in New York and New Jersey! ¬†So, if you have worked hard and got to your goal and now have that “WHAT’S NEXT?” feeling, please take a minute to read on and learn from my mistakes, AND my victories!

My first answer to, “Now what?”, is ALWAYS, “Set a NEW Goal!”

Those of you who did not know me back in 1996, don’t know that I hit my goal weight one other time in my adult life. ¬†Yup! ¬†I did a “Doctor Approved” weight loss plan. ¬†I lost 84# in about 7 months. ¬†When I hit my goal,¬†you guessed it….I thought I was DONE, so I let all of my bad habits creep back in. ¬†I started eating the way I did before starting the “plan”. ¬†I started drinking alcohol and eating fatty foods again. ¬†At the same time, I was released from Physical Therapy(which was the ONLY exercise I was getting), so I stopped doing any exercise at all! ¬†Within 6 months, I had put back on 45#! ¬†Do you know what I did next?

I GAVE UP! ¬†Over the next 12 years, I dieted continuously, and gained more and more weight, before hitting my all time high, which was closer to 300# than I like to admit. ¬†I admit to 275#, so let’s just stick with that! ūüėõ

No one had told me that health and fitness really IS a lifestyle that you must practice every day.  There is no final destination.  You can always be better.  You can eat a little cleaner.  You can stretch a little more.  You can lift a little more.  You can get a little stronger.  I think of martial arts.  Or yoga.  People practice these for their entire lives!  They are always working to improve.  There is NO PERFECT!  There is not a place where you now know everything, so that is the end.  They just keep working on being THEIR VERY BEST.

Let’s fast forward to September 2008. ¬†I had at that point had 3 back surgeries including a lumbar spinal fusion. ¬†I was a drunk. ¬†I was a chain smoker. ¬†I was a couch potato. ¬†I HATED MYSELF!

I made a decision! ¬†I was tired of living like this, and I was refusing to go on diabetes and blood pressure medication. ¬†I was NOT going to live my mother’s life! ¬†She was always unhealthy and overweight. ¬† And she also died entirely too young!

So I reached out!  I joined an online support group.  They helped me realize that I did not have to be perfect, and making small changes in the beginning would amount to huge success in the end.  So I walked 1/2 a block from my house and back 5 days a week and I cut out fried foods.  The next week, I walked a full block and cut back to drinking alcohol 4 days a week.  The third week, I walked 2 blocks, did 2 minutes of a 10-Minute Trainer video, and cut back to drinking 3 nights a week.  See the pattern?  Nothing drastic at first.  SMALL CONSISTENT EFFORTS=BIG RESULTS.

One Step At A Time

I 100% believe that SUPPORT, no matter if it is one workout buddy, or a group of people online(who for me seemed less threatening, because they didn’t know me well enough to judge me, or at least I didn’t care if they did!), or a group of friends who team up to keep each other accountable as each works towards their individual goals.

And when that particular group broke up, I wasn’t sure exactly what to do. ¬†I knew I needed someone to be accountable to. ¬†So I went BIG! ¬†I went public! ¬†My accountability group became the WORLD! ¬†I started this blog. ¬†Then I started my Facebook Page. ¬†And when I found out that not only was I helping myself stay accountable, but that the people who were following me were using my posts and my page to stay accountable themselves, a passion to help them started growing inside me! ¬†I searched for the best way to do that, and that was when I was introduced to Beachbody!

Today, as a Beachbody Coach, I put people in groups to do the exact same thing!  And not only does it help them, but it helps me.  The more people in the group who participate and share and work to stay accountable, the easier it is for Me to also stay accountable.

In fact, those of you who follow me on Facebook, already know that I am starting a challenge this upcoming Saturday, November 1st, called “The $5, ‘Get Me Through The Holidays’ Challenge Group”.

GROUP!  THAT is the key word here!

If you don’t feel you have to do it alone…

If you KNOW someone is watching…

If you know the other members of the group are counting on you for the same support that they are showing you…

You WILL show up!  Many of us will do EVERYTHING we can to help someone else, but NEVER for OURSELVES!  Mommies especially, I KNOW you are hearing me!

So I invite you to HELP SOMEONE ELSE!

Make it about THEM!  You will be surprised at how much YOU will achieve if you start out trying to help someone else.

Decide. Commit. Succeed!

It is your choice. ¬†It is MY choice. ¬†I could easily decide tomorrow, that this public accountability life is too hard. ¬†That it would be SO much easier to live a quiet life where the world is not inspecting every bite I put in my mouth, every workout I do(or DON’T do), and every time I LIVE MY LIFE and have a beer(or several) with friends. ¬†Yes, I do LIVE! ¬†I try my best to stick to an 80/20 plan, but sometimes life happens. ¬†It gets messy.

But I get up every day and make a choice. ¬†I choose to do MY best each and every day! ¬†Some days are better than others. ¬†PERIOD! ¬†But you have to learn to let the bad ones go. ¬†Leave them in the past. ¬†You know the old saying, “Get back up, dust yourself off, and get back on the horse!” ¬†There is a lot of truth in that statement.

Aristotle said, “Excellence is a habit.”

aristotle

The more you practice picking yourself up, the more it will become a habit.  Excellence will become your normal.  Your ordinary will become EXTRAORDINARY!   So every day, when you wake up, while you are getting ready for your day, MAKE THE CHOICE!  CHOOSE happiness!

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So my 4 biggest “What To Do”‘s in “keeping it off”?

1) Realize that this is a LIFELONG journey!  There is no final destination.  There is always another goal that you want to reach.

2) SUPPORT!!!  Find a group you relate to and hold on to them!

3) Help OTHERS work towards THEIR success!

4) CHOOSE to BE whatever you want!  It really is as simple as that.  Will it be EASY?  Heck no!  Will you have times when you need more help than others to get back up on that horse?  YES!  But can you do it?  Of course!  And Why?  Because the choice is yours!

If you want to join one of my groups, contact me.

LOVE to you ALL!!!

Remember, the choice is YOURS!  MAKE today GREAT!!!

Facebook page – Body By Brenda

bodybybrenda@hotmail.com

Brenda’s Beachbody Site

 

Weight Loss Transformation?

Here is a little hard truth for you.  Tough Love, if you will.

This is me close to my heaviest, and at my leanest about two years ago.

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Yup, that’s right, I far from¬†my leanest¬†right now. ¬†THAT ‚ÜϬ†takes a LOT of work, and I have been giving up a lot of my “ME” time to help others the last couple years. ¬†Not that I am saying that is an altogether a bad thing. ¬†I am still healthy, and I still LOVE ME! ¬†And I really don’t look TOO shabby, right? ūüėČ

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But I am writing this blog, because I truly believe God put me on this Earth to help other people find their way to health and fitness.  To REALLY make the changes in their lives that are necessary to help them life happy, healthy, more fulfilling lives, and not the sad, sick, mediocrity that I and many of you have lived for years.  I will do ALL I can to help every person who WANTS my help to get fit and healthy.

But it does NOT come without a lot of hard work.  And tears.  And sometimes even pain.

It does NOT come for free.

It does NOT come without sacrifice.

You WILL have to buy healthy food.

You WILL have to give up some of your favorite comfort foods MOST OF THE TIME!

You WILL need to MAKE the time to move your body.

AND…
You WILL want to give up.

You WILL call me horrible names under your breath. Maybe even to my face.

You WILL have days that you don’t even think you are worth it all.

But IF you come to me. If you stay invested in yourself, and stay accountable even when you are at your very very worst, as your coach, I WILL BE HERE FOR YOU!

BUT¬†you can’t¬†hide from me.¬† You have to¬†help ME,¬†help YOU, or the “quit” is not on me. Don’t make excuses. Especially BEFORE you even respond to my outreached hand. ¬†Do you know why?

Because excuses are PLANNED LIES!

So, my question to you is:

Are you planning your healthy future, or are you planning your excuses to NOT have that future?

If you are ready for a plan, I would LOVE to be the one to help you start the journey to meeting your future healthier self!

Contact me today at bodybybrenda@hotmail.com

MAKE today GREAT!

worth it

“Am I Ugly?”

I listened the following TED Talk while I was working Friday afternoon.  I had to pause it several times, because I realized that she was describing me and my life.  I have been working consciously on my poor self-image and the self-hatred towards myself and how I look for about 5 years now.  But 38 years of feeling you are the ugliest and most worthless person in the world is not an easy thing to overcome.

Some of you who follow me on IG and FB got to see my baby picture last weekend.  Here it is if you missed it.

baby picture

 

Yup! ¬†That’s me! ¬†All 12 lbs 1/2 oz of me! ¬†And yes, that IS one DAY old, not one year! ¬†I was also breech, which lead to even more stories since after they broke my ankle to get me out, I got stuck AGAIN because my shoulders were so broad.

Also, for those of you who haven’t known me all my life, have I ever told you all what my nickname has been since BEFORE I was born is? ¬†It is Boo Boo! ¬†No, not like Yogi’s adorable little friend, like MISTAKE! ¬†OOPS! ¬†I always tried to take that name with a grain of salt, because my Mom always told me that I may have been an “oops”, but that I was the most LOVED “oops” EVER!

But even with her kind words, as I got older, the self-hate grew. ¬†After my back injury, I felt even more worthless. ¬†More useless. ¬†More fat. ¬†More UGLY! ¬†I learned that I could numb myself to the world with alcohol and prescription drugs. ¬†Which did not help my already sedentary lifestyle. ¬†And as the problem grew, I withdrew from family and friends more. ¬†I had friends that I would talk to occasionally, and I saw family on holidays. ¬†But to be honest, I was “happiest” at home with my beer, my food, my pain killers, and my growing self hate. ¬†THAT was my normal. ¬†I lost many friends and acquaintances to my BEST BUDS¬†Beer and Hydrocodone.

I used to LOVE women’s magazines. ¬†Fitness, beauty, fashion. ¬†But they all reminded me of how NOT perfect I was. ¬†I would start the latest diet nearly every Monday. ¬†It would generally last until Monday at 5:30 when that first drink of beer of the day would cross my lips. ¬†But even with my lack of willpower and commitment to my health, I continually compared myself to those beautiful, perfect creatures in those magazines. ¬†The ones I longed to look like. ¬†The ones I longed to BE.

You know what is funny?  Once I got fit and healthy, I cancelled ALL of those subscriptions.  I guess I got healthier mentally too.  And realized that fit and healthy does not always mean skinny, drop-dead gorgeous, with big boobs and the perfect ass!

I still struggle with my self-esteem and body image almost daily.  But for the first time in my life, even if it is not always my first thought when I see my picture next to a gorgeous, fit woman, I know in my heart that I am fit and healthy.  I work my butt off to be the best ME that I can be!

kickpic collage

And that IS enough. ¬†And anyone who doesn’t think so, doesn’t deserve me, my time, or my friendship.

We need to band together to let our girls know that genetic lottery + photo shop does NOT equal perfection.  And we need to stop striving for, and comparing ourselves to, a perfection that does not exist!

DO NOT skip watching the video!!!  The message is important!

Working Through The Emotional Stuff

Many of you know that I have struggled with a lot of emotional and mental issues for most of my life. ¬†Self-Hate and depression were just the beginning at a very young age. ¬†When I added the loss of a child, when I was still a child myself(She went to be with God the day after my¬†18th birthday), we prayed¬†for the best, but the fear of the worst is there. ¬†On April 10, 1989, I could see that fear in my Mother’s eyes. ¬†She was scared as to what I would do next. ¬†How would I handle it? ¬†Would I fall apart? ¬†Would I try once again to take my own life like I had years earlier?

Well, I have had many break downs since then. ¬†Marian’s dad was actually great in the months following our loss. ¬†Although we did not stay together, he was a kind and gentle man, especially considering his age(he was 16) and what we had just been through. ¬†Marian would be 25 years old now, and I still think of her every day. ¬†I don’t mourn her as much as I used to, but I often wonder what she would have been like. ¬†And how¬†would my life have been¬†different? ¬†I do still have days though.

Today is Pregnancy And Infant Loss Remembrance Day.  In honor of that, I am asking you all to join me in the Wave of Light to remember our tiny angels.

wave of light

 

I also want to share with you a poem that was given to me by Marian’s dad after she left us.

In Memory Of Marian

I hear the cry of a child

From far, far away

And I wonder if the crying

Is my Marian trying to say…

 

It’s OK, so please don’t frown,

It was not your fault at all.

Now I am sitting here in Heaven

And GOD said that I could call.

 

So I called to say I love you,

And I hope that you’re alright.

I hope my call won’t sadden you,

And keep you up all night.

 

Well, I have to go now.

Please be happy and don’t fret.

‘Cause I am sitting here on GOD’s lap

Getting the best care I can get.

 

So as I reach out with my words as a HUGE HUG to all of you today, I hope each of you struggling with an empty place in your arms, but an extra little light in your heart, knowing that such a special little angel was a part of you once.

The love is real.

The PAIN is real.

The emotions are real.

Just because others don’t understand it, does not mean it is not real.

If you need help dealing with it, please get it.  If you need a friend who will not dismiss your pain, find one.  You are not alone.  Many of us deal with these feeling EVERY day.

I am blessed to be an aunt to so many wonderful kids. ¬†And now THEIR kids’s GREAT-Aunt! ¬†I honestly, without writing their names all down, have lost count! ¬†LOL! ¬† But they share their love with me, and respect that there are going to be days that I may cry when a little one is lain in my arms for the first time. ¬†They know it will be OK, I am just thinking about the love I have for my Marian that I never got to share. ¬†Thank God there are so many of them to spread it around to! ūüôā

#PregnancyAndInfantLossRememrbanceDay

saying goodbye

Your On Switch To Fitness – P90

Will YOU let P90 be Your On Switch To Fitness?
I will admit, I thought that P90 was going to be too easy for me. I am in pretty good shape, right??? As a Beachbody Coach, I have been thinking of it mostly as a beginner program.  But it has the potential to be so, SO MUCH more.

Friday night, I did the Month 1 workouts Sculpt A and Ab Ripper A, and I gotta say, that I really enjoyed it.¬† Classic Tony Horton wit.¬† Great exercises with modifications shown for everyone.¬† I am not going to lie, I was sweating by the end!¬† But even as it did ‘reconfirm my belief that this truly can be the On Ramp to fitness for so many people, I also realized that it is so much more.
But I still chose to not write this blog that night.  I wanted to also see what the Sweat A was like before I made my full review.
And can I just say….I ABSOLUTELY LOVED IT!!!
This program not only has the potential to help people like I used to be

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Yes, I am talking about an alcohol swilling, except pill popping, chain smoking, disabled and in constant pain, morbidly obese 37 year old woman living in the body of a 78 year old(my age on the “Real Age” test the week I started my journey in September 2008), AND the woman I am now.
BUT…could it also help keep a fit and healthy person fit and healthy? I believe that answer is “YES!”
It could even be a way for a fit and healthy person FINALLY get those they love to finally workout with them. You can all do the same workouts TOGETHER! How amazing would that be?
Just image finally having a program that older parents could be a part of. Or get your overweight, game obsessed teen to spend 25 minutes with you learning that it really IS possible to move without feeling awkward and left out.
Or, what about that spouse or sibling who has bad knees, or a bad foot, or a bad back who just does not think ANY workout can ever be “theirs”?
Or the person who says they don’t have time? Longest workout in the C Phase is STILL less than an hour!

So, I ask again?

Could P90 be the On Switch to Fitness fir YOU? Or maybe someone you love?

If so, or if you have more questions, Please contact me. I would love to help Coach you through it.
E-mail me at bodybybrenda@hotmail.com or message me on Facebook.

I am very passionate about this. I know that passion can sometimes be mistaken for being pushy, but I know what “Rock Bottom” feels like. Trust me, THIS
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Strong, FIT, and healthy…

Is better! ūüôā

Love to you, All!

WELCOME TO OCTOBER!!!!

 

breast cancer tree 1

Been really busy, first being run down with allergies! ¬†UGH! ¬†I can’t wait for all the fields to be cleared out! ¬†Worst thing about living rural as far as I am concerned ūüėõ

But I have also been doing some planning for some things that are going to be happening this month on not only my website, but specifically on my Body By Brenda Facebook page. ¬†I am going to have Breast Cancer Awareness recognition and resource sharing. ¬†I am going to be sharing tips from my friend Stephanie from Secret Sister Shop. ¬†I mean, come on…I even dyed my hair pink to raise awareness! ¬†And trust me, when a 43 year old administrative assistant dyes her hair pink…..EVERYONE asks WHY?! ¬†LOL!

But as a woman with friends, family, heck even friends of friends, who seem to be affected by this disease EVERY day, it makes me realize that as a health and fitness professional, it is MY duty to make sure people KNOW where to find the info. ¬†But not only that. ¬†I don’t want my part of this to be about scaring women into having a mammogram, but to CELEBRATE those who are fighting now, the battles won, and the heroic lives of the battles lost!

 

AND, not to take away from Breast Cancer Awareness, but rather to FOCUS more on our overall health, I know there are a LOT of you out there who are NOT taking proper care of yourselves. ¬†You don’t make sure you get in exercise for a minimum of 5 days a week, and simply put, your nutrition SUCKS!

As a Beachbody Coach, I have not only teamed up with Beachbody and Tony Horton, but with Wounded Warriors to get you started on the BEST Intro to Fitness Program I have ever seen. ¬†Tony has taken the EXTREME out of this program and made it for EVERYONE! ¬†Pair it up with Shakeology, the “Healthiest Meal Of The Day”, and you are sure to see success. ¬†For every Chalenge Pack sold, in honor of the late Tony Horton Sr., Beachbody is donating $5 to http://www.woundedwarriors.org, and I will be matching that donation! ¬†So your purchase will not only help YOU, it will send $10 to our veterans who need our help! ¬†How cool is that?

It is my goal to start a test group for this program and use a Facebook Group to keep us all accountable and feeling supported so that we all make it to day 90! ¬†Date is still TBD, but it will be in the next few weeks, so don’t delay!!! ¬†I will announce it soon!

If you want to be a part of this, and I KNOW you have said to yourself at one point in time or another, “I would do ANYTHING to be healthy and feel GOOD!”. ¬†Well…..THIS is your chance! ¬†NOW is the time. ¬†I am your sign!

Send me message on my Facebook page or to my personal email, bodybybrenda@hotmail.com, and I will get back to you ASAP about the requirements to be in the group, and how to order your P90 Challenge Pack as soon as possible to make sure you are all set to start when the Group goes active.

 

To learn more or order now, click here —->¬† Coach Body By Brenda’s Team Beachbody Page