You are what you choose to be, your life will be a reflection of the choices you make in response to what the world gives you. I have always been a person that will look at each situation and figure out how I need to climb each mountain/hurdle in life, rather than, why way I given this mountain or using the mountain as an excuse to quit.
I grew up in a small town of about 1,500 people and learned quickly to make things happen for me, rather than wait for them to be handed to me. Simply put, I love HARD WORK and I thrive off of accomplishing goals. A quote I feel reflects my life is “Respect is earned when no one is looking.” This is where the hard work is applied in building the foundation of your goals and persevering until it is accomplished.
About 2 years ago I began quite a new journey that required extreme perseverance. My husband and I opened our own iPhysique Gym which was a big goal, but we had very minimal business experience. Exactly 2 months after we opened our gym, I gave birth to my 2nd child. This was a challenge as I was the prime revenue source for the gym but could only work minimally for the first month of my sons life. While struggling with the balance of business owner and new motherhood, I also had to be the Coach and Leader to a team of 35 active Bodybuilding/Figure/Bikini competitors. I coached them to show while, running the gym, running my family, and beginning my own contest prep. I am an IFBB Professional Figure athlete and have been competing for 12 years but my contest prep this time was very challenging with what I had on my plate of responsibilities. I was successful and was able to step on stage 6.5 months after giving birth to my son, Levai.
I have an 8 year old daughter Talia that has such a tender heart and is always supportive of my goals, but it is important to me that I do not bring the struggles of my competition prep into our home. She would not know whether I am in prep or not unless I tell her. It is also important to me that she see’s me as a positive role model who loves to be active and who has a passion for clean eating. I know that I am planting the seeds that will allow her to make the choices in her life that will keep her healthy and happy.
I have recently taken a passion to outdoor obstacle racing and other athletic or performance based events as opposed to the physique based events I have done for the last 12 years. This new passion has allowed me to keep Talia more involved and active with me in a way that she can enjoy. We can go to the playground and I will train on the monkey bars, jump rope, balance beam, climbing the pole etc. What better way can a child stay active then to enjoy it with her mother. I feel very balanced being able to incorporate my family life with my fitness life and not let the fitness become a negative thing that takes my time away from my children.
We have also discovered that the best way to incorporate clean eating is to get the kids in the grocery store and kitchen with you. Yes it will take more time than if you were to do it on your own, but it is quality time that teaches invaluable lessons to my child.
Here are some tips that we have enjoyed:
Going through the grocery store and using the “fooducate” phone app to scan foods that have a label and grades them. She cannot purchase something that is lower than a C+. Along with that she has to choose as many whole foods as she can.
Talia started her own garden in our backyard that she calls “her business” because she is feeding our family. She enjoys watering her plants and talks to them to help them grow.
When we have smaller grocery trips Talia enjoys using the self scan to scan our purchases and bag them, she organizes the categories of fruits, vegetables etc.
In the kitchen cutting the fruits and veggies is even more exciting to her now that she gets to use an adult knife. (Under adult supervision of course!)
Making videos of her in the kitchen making clean eating recipes (she doesn’t eat most of them yet but enjoys making them for me). Kids love to see themselves on video and even more if you post it on Facebook and they see your friends’ comments.
I train clients, competitors and athletes of all levels and find that those who are most successful are those that follow my advice and learn to “live in the grey.” I say that meaning that if you make a mistake you acknowledge and correct as soon as possible.
Those that dwell in their mistake, or expect nothing but perfection, will find themselves running around in circles and never getting anywhere, or frustrating themselves to the point that they feel defeated.
Along with that I strongly believe that “You are your own 24/7” you must take personal responsibility for your actions rather than putting the blame on others. Too many times we fail to be true to ourselves and no one else knows exactly what you do in the 24 hours that are given to you daily. If I am in the house alone (which is rare) I do not go to the cupboard to sabotage my diet or clean eating lifestyle because I would not be true to myself and would only be hurting.
My hope is that I have inspired you find ways or reasons to succeed in life, rather than finding excuses as to why you did not succeed.
Have a happy and healthy life, be inspiring, and bring balance to life.