Change Is Hard! But Stay Positive, Because It Could Just Possibly Be the Change to Lead You to Your Best Life!

OK, so by that title, you probably think this is going to be all rainbows and puppies.

NOT how I feel right this moment, but trying to see the all the positives that are possible from this change.  If you have followed me for any length of time, you know that as a childless woman, I met an AMAZING Mom a few years ago who became a VERY close friend.  So close, that she started referring to me as her beautiful daughter’s Bonus Mom.  And that little girl, in essence, became my Best Friend. ❤

This is She and I at a Kickpics Photo shoot 2 years ago.moments.jpg

Last night, our embrace was filled with less happy emotions.  LOTS of tears 😥


You see, I will not get to see her as often, because she and her Mom are moving away.  And it is going to be HARD!  I will miss them both HORRIBLY!

BUT…..I know this is good for them!  It is a chance at a new beginning for my dear friend who needs, and DESERVES, to close a toxic chapter in her life!  And I 100% understand and support her in that change.  Will it be a difficult transition?  Will it still hurt sometimes?  Will it take TIME?  YES!!!

But to be a good friend, I have to recognize that this is what is best.  It is not like I will never see or speak to them again, just a little less.

My message today, is that sometimes the very BEST change for someone else, may hurt those left behind.  But we have to make sure we are never holding someone back from living their happiest life.  We will adjust.  We can make it through.  And if we stay positive and try to see their change as something good, maybe we will realize that they are here to lead as an example to us.  Maybe their change could inspire a change in ourselves to work towards living our very best lives too.  Because I don’t know about you, but I could use “stepping it up” a bit 😉

So although I will miss my dear friends, I will ALWAYS wish them the Greatest Happiness in their lives.


So even if adventures like these are fewer and farther in between, we will always hold these memories in our hearts, right next to the loving friendship that will never die!

Amazing what kind of friendships can grow from a simple little Dance Fitness class ❤

Enjoy your next chapter, My Friend!   And I WILL see you soon ❤

You Are Not Where You Want To Be

THAT, My Friends, is the answer to the question, “What should I use for motivation?”


Are you healthy?

Then eat right and exercise!

Are you at your goal weight?

Then eat right and exercise!

Are you happy with YOU?

Then eat right, exercise, and add some wonderful Personal Development books! *I can recommend a few of my personal favorites if you don’t know what a good PD book even is.*


Yes, I do know that the above is a bit cliche’, but I don’t really care.  It is 100% the TRUTH!

Here is a bit of MY truth if you don’t know it.

10 years ago this week, I was 35# down from my highest weight of 296#, and no one had even noticed! I was practically starving myself, and knew I was on yet another road to failure! No one even knew I was trying to lose weight.  I had not declared that I was on a health journey, because I just knew I was going to fail.  On September 16, 2008, I watched the Season 6 Premier of Biggest Loser, like I ALWAYS did, but something felt different in me this time.  I had already seen the number on the scale go down some, so why not go for it.  I joined an online community, and went on to lose another 110# to see my lowest weight.  But I still didn’t look like what I was aiming for.  So I started lifting more weights and doing a little less cardio.  I gained back about 20# of solid muscle and dropped another 2 sizes!

This pic was taken around that time. Man my hair was short! LOL!

Now, over the past few years, some BIG stresses, some tragic distractions, some “not so smart on my part” experimenting with different diet theories, and simply getting older and entering menopause, has lead me to where I am now dealing with some metabolic/hormonal issues along with a significant weight gain.  Today, I weighed in at 205#. I am still mortified by that number, but it is also unfortunately NOT the highest I have seen over the past few months.  I know that this leg of my journey is going to be a rough one!  Y’All KNOW I work hard, so that number does NOT and WILL NOT, define Me!

But what I KNOW works, is not something I have stuck with as I experimented with the many trends that I tell people to stay away from, but had to prove it to myself.

And what is MY MOTIVATION to return to what I know works?





So, maybe those aren’t YOUR reasons.  Maybe you could care less about being a size 6.  To be honest, it was never my goal either!  A size 12 was.  And even right now, where I am currently, I am wearing mostly 10’s and have caught myself hating on me and beating myself up.  To that I now call BS!

And I had to look long and hard into the mirror and find MY MOTIVATION!  And it was staring back at me!  I see the barrel around my midsection.  CLASSIC Diabetes body.  I can feel my blood pressure rise sometimes and see my ankles and hands swell along with that heavy feeling after a hard move in a workout.  Classic heart disease signs.  These 2 diseases plague my family!  It is imperative that I take control again.


So, I ask you, do you need me screaming in your face and dropping some TOUGH LOVE down on you?

If so, I do both in person classes and training AND online coaching.


But I am here to tell you that all the coaching and knowledge in the world will not help if you are not ready to commit to Yourself!  If you can’t look in the mirror and ask yourself, “What am I waiting for?  WHY do I continue to do this to myself?”  and come to the conclusion that you are READY to LIVE your healthiest life by making more good choices than bad and showing up ready to do WORK!

So, I tell you all of this to let you know that just because I am not where I want to be, does not mean that I am not working for it.  I AM!  If you come to any of my classes, you KNOW that to be true!  And today, I challenge you to put in the work to make YOU feel better.  I would love to, but I can’t do the work for you.  Here is what I am doing because it is what has worked for me in the past, and I just need to be patient and put in the work.

I am eating right approximately 80% of the time.

I workout a minimum of 4 days a week.

I lean on MY support group when I need some accountability or need to vent or need someone to be there to either help or even just listen while I talk something out.

And, this just in, I am learning how to REST!  My recovery time, or lack thereof, has been a big part of my current issues.  So I am learning to make some time for it again.

So, now that you know Your Motivation comes from within and has been there all along, you just needed to look for it…..

What’s Your Plan?

Let me know if I can help! ❤

But Did I Really Fail?

I have been beating myself up again lately.  You see, I started LIIFT4 with Joel Freeman, and at that time had every intention of doing all 32 workouts.  And at first, the getting up early was going OK.  And I even started to feel stronger.  But around week 5, I noticed that a few things were “off”.  I was cranky.  I felt weak.  I was tired.  I was having trouble getting through not only MY workouts, but the classes I teach each night at Phoenix Fitness with Body By BrendaT.  Which in and of itself makes me feel like a failure, because I need to be 100% there to lead my students.  So that was really bothering me.

Week 6, I was on vacation from my day job, but I was actually physically busier than when I work, and I was NOT getting up early when I finally had time to get some decent sleep!  So, my only workouts were my classes that I still taught 4 out of 5 of the normally scheduled days. Which unfortunately means that I did not stay on track with LIIFT4, and then did not go back to it after I went back to work to finish the last 2 weeks.

Did I fail?

To complete that particular program, yes.

But did I really fail?

I don’t think so.  Why? Because I did learn some valuable training tips from Joel, and I learned the MAIN GOAL of LIIFT4!  That you CAN do this AMAZING program even with a busy lifestyle, because it is sustainable!

But for ME personally, I was WAY overdoing it!  For the 6 weeks that I was doing LIIFT4, I was working out a minimum of 10 hours a week!  And with choreography and Insanity LIVE and Country Heat LIVE practice, it was more like 12-15!  And if you have ever been to one of my classes, you know that I teach best by doing and giving it 110% of MY Best!

Does that sound like a lot?  Maybe not to some of you, but remember, I also work a full time job, have a husband and 5 furkids to take care of, plus all the financials for both my business AND my home, AND I am a Beachbody Coach!  I have been spreading myself too thin.  And I have known this is the reason/cause of my adrenal fatigue for awhile, but I just keep pushing! And I am now recognizing that it is time to stop.

A word that I have to return to is SUSTAINABLE!  What I was doing was NOT sustainable for me.  It is going to take awhile to heal, and I know that, but learning to chill a bit, has been a struggle for me.  I feel like I am letting someone down if I don’t try to do it all.  But doing it in exchange of my health, can’t happen any more.

So, first up to go was my extra morning workout.  Yup!  They had to go.  At this time I am down to approximately 7.5 hours of working out, plus learning how to mark things better for choreography instead of doing everything FULL OUT!

Next, will be lowering my weights in my resistance classes.  It is tough for me to watch my students lift more than me, but that is my stupid EGO getting in the way!  Time to also LET THAT GO!


So, that makes this an opportunity for me to do some learning about ME!

So, as one failure passes, a new opportunity to do it right has begun again! 🙂

fail or beginning.png

Low Points and Clawing Your Way Back!

We all have times when we start questioning choices we have made in our lives.  And right now, I am not going to lie, is one of those times in my life.  Which unfortunately, also makes me think of my past and wonder if those who said I would never be enough and would continue to fail at everything, were right. Have I internalized their words so much, that even after all these years, they will win?

I would like to believe the answer is NO.  But some parts of my life are signalling differently.  And as Julia Roberts said in Pretty Woman, “The bad stuff is easier to believe.”  When I feel like things are going great, I am skeptical.  When I feel like things are going bad, my brain says, “SEE!  That’s what they told you would happen.  You will never be enough to get it right.”


WHY am I feeling like this right now? I look back to where I was 5-6 years ago, and things were MUCH different with my finances, my health and even the way I looked!  Does the way I look thing make me egotistical, maybe, but that isn’t even why I refer to it. When asked by a friend of his, if my Dad was proud of me when I lost 148# and ran a marathon, he said, and I quote, “I’ll be proud of her if she actually keeps it off!  Otherwise, it is actually just another failed attempt.”  Weeeelllllll…..guess what?  I didn’t keep it all off.  I am still down over 90#, but I feel like a failure.  And I can feel his disappointment deep inside.



It is often hard to believe in yourself when this is the demon living in your head.

But then…..I think about all that I HAVE Accomplished, despite being made to think that I would never be good enough.

I AM a Childless Mother who still gets out of bed each day.

I AM a Survivor!


I DID lose 148#!

I DID work my butt off to put on 22# of solid muscle and take my BF% down to <20%.

I DID run a marathon at 40 years old after 3 back surgeries and a spinal fusion.

I DID keep over 100# of that weight off for nearly 9 years.

I DID open a rural fitness studio and keep the doors open for nearly 2 years now despite only ONE person from my small town ever stepping foot in the door!

SO I am NOT a Failure!

Have I failed at things?  ABSOLUTELY!

But I am NOT a Failure!  And although sometimes I need to think about it long enough to get good and mad enough to prove people wrong to get back on track, I NEVER give up completely!  Otherwise I would be as unhealthy as I was in May 2008, worrying about pre-diabetes and colon cancer, and weighing in around 296#!  And if you follow me at all, you know that I still workout, I still eat well most of the time, and I hurt myself the most by not resting enough! THAT is a big one that I am working on now!  Sleep and downtime!

So, in summary, this blog post was simply my way of talking to myself back into caring about and believing in myself enough to keep going. Sometimes, life gets you down.  You just have to make sure you are strong enough to get back up no matter what!

believe in you

Be An Arrow

We all struggle.  We all have things or times in our lives that make us feel like we are being pulled back, held back, or even beaten back to the wall.  But just think of the greatness that will follow once it has been drawn back all the way and then allowed to fly!


I no longer look at slip ups, failures, screw ups, or even down right meltdowns, as 100% bad anymore.  Because maybe that just wasn’t MY thing.  Maybe it just wasn’t MY time.  I do my best and think I am pretty good at what I do, but I am still not what most people would call successful, because I don’t make a lot of money.  But I think that part of my life could still be on the horizon.  For now, I have some great friends, and some AMAZING students and clients, and I will keep being my best for them while working hard to keep my head up and above water.

So as I keep getting pulled back, I will just keep thinking of how high I am going to go when this time of tension is over and I get to fly!

Rainbows and Unicorns???

I would love to tell you that my life is actually like all of the happy and positive posts that I share daily on Social Media.  But truth be told, they are as much to inspire and motivate myself as they are for those who follow me.  Life is very rarely Rainbows and Unicorns, but I try to make the best of it each day.

not rand u

Today is more of a Dark Clouds and Trolls kinda day.  Why?  Because I am battling some pain.  I deal with pain on a daily basis, so if I actually get to the point of admitting it outloud, then you best believe that I HURT!  But it is mostly arthritic pain, stronger than normal back pain, and muscle soreness from falling yesterday.  So what did I do when my alarm went off at 5:30AM today?  I started by rotating my wrists and ankles 10 times each way, stretched my hands, back, and legs, did some hamstring and quad exercises that I learned from a PT years ago, and finally got out of bed around 5:45.  Let the dogs out, fed them, and then went across the street to the studio to workout.  Did Wk2 D1 of LIIFT4 – Chest and Triceps, with weights going from 12#-25#, and then went back to the house to get ready for work.  You see, often, I find that I hurt worse when I don’t try to get my body moving.  When I first woke up, believe me, I thought about it.  Calling into work and calling off classes.  Everyone would understand, right?  But how would that have helped me MOVE?

I also feel like crud, because I ate my emotions all weekend.  YUP!  I had a really bad nutrition weekend.  It happens.  More often than I would like recently to be honest.  But I wake the next day ready to embrace the challenges again.  Every day isn’t a success, but every day can LEAD to the next successful day.

So when a bad day takes you over body, mind, and soul, do your very best to let it go and be open to the next day being better!



But no matter what each day brings, when you are looking in the mirror and hating everything you see, STOP!  And consciously give yourself a bit of LOVE.  Because you can’t soar at life if you don’t first learn to F.L.Y.!



My Insanity LIVE Training

Let’s start this a few months back, when my friend Beverly posted in a Coach Facebook Group about ShaunT HIMSELF coming to St Louis to do an Insanity LIVE training.  I was like….Well…..I haven’t actually even done Insanity, and not real sure it is something I could sell OR EVEN TEACH FOR THAT MATTER, in my small rural gym.  But I believe in going to live training events for my business, and anything that you just want to be better at, so I decided to sign up.  Not really sure if I would like it, or EVER teach it.

But come this past Saturday morning, I got in my car and drove to St Louis.  Excited, scared, nervous, having anxiety about my jacked up knee and how much I would have to modify, and very unsure of where my life was actually heading after this day.  But I chose to do my best to keep an open mind and a positive attitude.


WELL….Let me tell you……Saturday changed my out look on MANY things!



THE FIRST being, this man is AMAZING! 

Even MORE AMAZING than I thought before.  I have always adored him and loved his dance programs, and to hear him speak, has always been one of my favorite things about going to Coach Summit.  He just has a way of speaking that touches me to my core.  And Saturday was NO EXCEPTION!

By the end of the day, between him and the AWESOME Chip Hoffa, Master Trainer, I was EXHAUSTED!  But I was also a Certified Insanity LIVE Instructor!

AND even more importantly, I had a revived feeling of excitement about not only the future of my studio and fitness classes, but of my own health and fitness journey.  I CAN DO HARD THINGS!

I felt ALIVE!

And I even felt more ready to start the new program I started Monday, LIIFT4 with Joel Freeman on Beachbody On Demand.  And so far, I am SORE AF, but I am LOVING it!  Remember I am a Fitness Professional, and we are all a bit twisted! LOL!

So if you are local to me, watch my schedule for Insanity LIVE classes as early as the first week of August, which you can find on My Google Calendar!  And even if you are not, keep tabs on my fitness journey and what I am up to next on IG – @bodybybrendat or on Facebook, you can find me at Body By BrendaT or Phoenix Fitness With Body By BrendaT.




ON EDIT….I wanted to add this post from my Facebook Page to help share with you WHY this Saturday meant so much to me.

37121527_1831932000230731_6123491846371934208_nody By BrendaT is with Shaun T.

Published by Brenda Turnbaugh · July 15 at 10:48 AM · 

I got to meet this AMAZING man yesterday. And if you know me, you know that even with this once in a lifetime chance, I sat back away from him, and nearly didn’t talk up when I had something I wanted to talk to him about. But when he said,”One more question.” To my surprise, my hand shot up! 😨😱😰
Yes, I talked to him. Yes, I got emotional. Yes, he gave me some AWESOME advice. But when Shaun T is talking to you and during that conversation, he says TRUST, and puts his right arm out, and then BELIEVE and puts his left arm out displaying his tattoos of those words, it feels like a huge hug of faith and belief in a way I had never felt before.
I have been in the room several times for talks from him where he did that to the audience. But yesterday, he did it TO ME! He was directly addressing Me!
I am bawling as I type this, because it meant so very much to me ❤️
I battle believing in me often. But yesterday something changed.
I went to Summit this year hoping for a renewed energy. As fun and informative and uplifting as it was, that <5 minute conversation with ShaunT did more for me than anything has in the last few years. It gave me back the feeling that even though I have struggled, I can still BELIEVE IN ME!!!

And I am going to become a force to be reckoned with. So join me, follow me, or get the HELL out of my way! It is time for this Old Girl to Trust and Believe that the AMAZING LIFE that she deserves is out there waiting for her! Time to go get it!❤️💪❤️