Archive for motivation

Underestimating Yourself + Weekend Fun

I am a resource.

I live and breathe health and fitness. And by that, I don’t mean that I am 100% healthy all the time or that I’m the fittest person on the planet. I mean that my world literally revolves around health and fitness. My jobs are all health and fitness related, I personally do my best to stay healthy and fit, and it happens to be what interests me most in this world. So when I say I live and breathe it, I mean it.

With that said, I tend to underestimate myself at times. Forgetting that I’ve been studying, learning, and DOing this “stuff” for almost 10 years. I still have plenty to learn, and am constantly challenging myself to learn more, but I DO know a lot and I tend to forget that sometimes. For me, it’s common knowledge. It’s no different to me than knowing my couch is black and tan. And sometimes I forget that it isn’t that obvious to most people. That is no fault of their own, and as long as they’re willing, I take those opportunities to teach.

I think a lot of us do this. We forget that what WE know is very valuable. Because it’s such a common knowledge in our world, we tend to underestimate what we have to share with others.

It’s the reason I started training clients again. I LOVE teaching others, I love showing them how they can achieve their goals, and it helps ME continuously learn, learn, learn. I’ve been training myself and learning from other world-renowned fitness professionals for YEARS, and now I’m getting to learn by training my own clients and learning it from a whole other perspective.

Because of this, I’ve started sharing more and more fitness tips that I think would be useful for others on Instagram and Facebook. Those things that I felt like “everyone knew”. And I urge you all to ask more questions. I’ve always been a curious person, and whenever I’m unsure, I always ask. Any of my trainers would tell you, I constantly had questions. “why am I doing this?, what does this do? Is this the best way to do it?” and then I would experiment on my own too. So all of this to say, USE ME. Ask me questions. Get my advice.

I’m HAPPY to share! You can e-mail me fitlizzio@gmail.com or message me on Facebook! I’m always listening! (well, Charlie might say differently but…you know :-D)

I encourage you to stop underestimating yourself as well. Share your knowledge. Somebody (or a lottabodies out there might really need it!)

Ok, onto more exciting things…

WEEKEND FUN

This weekend, I taught boot camp, played baseball, and lounged. It was great! Instead of talking about it, here are some photos….

My #1 Fan!

My #1 Fan!

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SO GOOD. Shrimp, avocado, lemon juice, cayenne pepper, garlic salt. THAT’S IT

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Question of the Day:

1. Why do you do what you do? Whether it’s for work, a hobby, etc.

Hitting Your Workout Groove + Less Serious Stuff

Hey guys!

We are THISCLOSE to the weekend! Woohoo!

I have a good mix of relaxation, fun and activities planned into my weekend:

-Teaching Boot Camp

-Friend’s Birthday Dinner

-Playing baseball (I joined a men’s wooden bat league!)

-Laying by the pool

Good Workouts and Hitting your Workout Groove

I’ve been getting in some really great workouts lately and it reminded me of the ups and downs that come with fitness. You go through times where you just have it in you to push really hard, hit new PR’s, and see great results. Then you have times where you are unmotivated, barely getting through your workouts, and just feeling kind of BLAH. These times can last anywhere from a few days to a few weeks. It isn’t a perfect cycle and it goes in waves. I’m currently on a HIGH with workouts and have been really crushing it in the gym! I took a week off when I was in Big Bear and can’t help but think that giving myself a break from the gym was the exact motivation and rest my body needed to start hitting it hard again. Finding your groove isn’t easy and isn’t always something you can wrap your head around. It’s easy to workout when you’re feeling motivated, and extremely difficult when you’re not. The important thing to keep in mind is to stay consistent and push through no matter what you’re feeling that day. This isn’t to say that some days are better taken as a rest day, because there are definitely times like that, but I’m talking about the mindset. If your head is what’s getting in the way, you have to push past it. You have to keep on keepin’ on and KNOW that if you’re in a rut, at some point it will turn around. It’s part of the process and learning to love and trust the process is a HUGE thing that has taken me YEARS to learn. I used to hear it and even repeat it to myself, but I didn’t truly believe or understand it. These days, I do. I get it. I’ve been training for 8 years straight now (hard to believe!) and it amazes me that I just keep learning more and more about myself, training, the body, and how they all work together and sometimes against each other. This is sort of a brain dump, but I couldn’t help but think about it today. So what should you take away from this?

If you’re having a bad/off day, week, or even MONTH, don’t get discouraged. YOU ARE NORMAL. Everyone goes through it. Bodybuilders, gymnasts, athletes, you name it. No matter how much someone seems into their sport, there are times where you just don’t feel like you’re able to push and give 100%, and that’s OK. What’s important is that you stay in the game. You give what you can that day, and you trust in the process. The good days WILL come back.

(drops mic, walks off stage)

Less Serious Stuff

-I posted this photo on Instagram last night….Oscar is going Hollywood on me….

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-If anyone tries to bring you down, just send them this photo

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-Does anyone else’s dog sit on their lap like a human? Oscar is so odd.

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Look at where his feet are!

-I went to Ross the other day and bought a bunch of tank tops for like $6 each. This is one of them. Love bargain shopping!

IMG_9094Hope you all have a wonderful weekend!

Question of the Day

1. Are you currently in a high or low with your workout routine?

2. Are you obsessed with your pet like I am?

 

Why Lifting Weights Rocks + Leg Workout

Wednesday already?!

I’m not complaining, but this week is kind of flying by! I also have Friday off of work, save for a few personal training clients, so I’m definitely excited about the weekend! Summer is just the best!

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Since taking a week off from the gym, I’ve been getting in some really awesome workouts! I thought I’d share my leg workout from yesterday. It was a KILLER. I even posted a video on Instagram mid-workout. For anyone that thinks weight lifting doesn’t have cardiovascular benefits, think again! I was sweating and breathing hard the entire workout!

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As you all know, I’m a big believer in lifting heavy weights (which is totally relative to what is heavy for each individual person). Lifting weights and working towards getting stronger WILL change your body composition. If you’re eating in a deficit, you WILL start to lean out and the beauty of it all is that as you put on more muscle, your resting metabolism increases, which means you’ll burn more calories throughout the day even when you’re just sitting around. Bret Contreras put up a great Facebook post the other day that sums it up pretty well. Smart guy!

This point really, really, really needs to be driven home. All of my clients who stay the same weight and gain a lot of…

Posted by Bret Contreras (Fitness Page) on Thursday, June 25, 2015

Okay, on to the workout:

LEG DAY

-Hip Thrusts (4 sets of 5 reps): 255#, 275#, 275#, 255#

-Deadlifts (3 sets of 12 reps):  135#

-DB Bulgarian Squats (3 sets of 12 reps): 15# DB’s

-45 Hypers (1 set of 20 reps & 1 set of 15 reps):  25# plate

-Lateral Band Walks w/ Squat (2 sets of 20 per leg): I used a light band

-Kettle Bell Swings (3 sets of 15 reps): 20kg KB

Question of the Day:

1. What’s your favorite way to sweat?

2. Any fun plans for the 4th?

Full Review: 21 Day Clutch {progress pictures}

So, much to my surprise when I woke up today, it wasn’t Friday. For whatever reason, yesterday felt like a Thursday for me and my week now feels discombobulated.

HAPPY WEDNESDAY

On another note, I’m getting my wisdom teeth out today. TERRIFIED, although I’m sure it won’t be that bad. (right? RIGHT?!) I’ll be sure to fill you all in afterwards (aka, I’ll share my chipmunk cheek photos with you for your viewing pleasure).

21 Day Clutch Review

bodybuilding.com

Photo Credit: Bodybuilding.com

I finished up the 21 Day Clutch as part of the FitLizzio Experiment! I’m soooo excited to give you all the details about this, so let’s get right to it!

The Program: 21 Day Clutch by Ashley Conrad

Program Length: 21 Days

Intensity: Hard

Workouts per Week: 5

Average Workout Length: 45-60 minutes

Overall Score (1-10): 7

Starting Weight: 152.9

Ending Weight: 149.1

THE WORKOUTS

This program had a mixture of lifting days and cardio days, with 2 rest days each week. The lifting days were full body workouts to be done circuit style. The cardio days were HIIT sessions that lasted anywhere from 15-25 minutes with an ab routine at the end.

Success rate: 99%. I stuck to all of the workouts and didn’t miss a single one. I did my own stretching and foam rolling (instead of what was prescribed), and added a barbell to the body weight squats to make it harder.

Likes:

-The workouts kicked my butt. I always left the gym a sweaty mess!

-You can day anything for 21 days. I liked that this program wasn’t something I had to commit to for a REALLY long time.

-While there was a small amount of steady state cardio that was recommended (but as an option), the cardio days were based around doing sprints on the treadmill. I agree with this philosophy and feel that it is the most effective way to improve your cardiovascular health as well as lose fat.

-I plan peppering both the lifting and HIIT workouts into my regular workout schedule about once per week.

Dislikes:

-The lifting workouts stayed the same throughout the entire program. I would have welcomed a little bit of variety.

DIET

I followed the diet to a T for 7 days, but found that it just wasn’t enough food for me. Ashley recommends 1/2 gram of Carbs per pound of body weight (for me, that’s only 75 grams per day!), 1 gram of protein per pound of body weight (150g=good), and 1/2 gram of fat per pound of body weight (75g=good). While I had intended to follow this plan exactly, it just wasn’t doable for me. I am up at 5:30am and work 12-13 hour days sometimes. I workout, work, train clients, and chase a dog around throughout the day, so I’m very active. 1300 calories per day and such a low amount of carbohydrates wasn’t sufficient. Instead, I stuck to my own macro-nutrient numbers: 150g Protein, 60g Fat, 190g Carbs per day, with slightly less on rest days.

Likes:

-While the first 7 days I followed the exact foods that the 21 Day Clutch called for, by Day 8 I realized that it was also a macro-nutrient based diet, so I could swap out foods for other foods with similar macro-nutrient values: SCORE! Considering that’s also my philosophy when it comes to dieting, I went with that and made the adjustments I mentioned above.

Dislikes:

-Not enough food. I’m 5’7 and it suggested I eat 1300 calories per day. As I mentioned above, this isn’t nearly enough on a day I’m working out.

-The diet seemed like a “quick fix” type of diet, which I do understand. It’s laid out to be a 21 day turnaround, so to see big results that quickly, requires drastic measures. However, I prefer a plan that leads to a sustainable lifestyle and this didn’t seem sustainable to me. It’s also possible to see results without being too crazy about it (see below).

PROGRESS:

At some points throughout the last 21 days, I felt that my body was changing. Other times, I couldn’t tell. I have had several people tell me my upper body is leaning out a lot, so I figured something must be happening and I just continued to trust the process. I took my 2nd set of progress pictures yesterday and was surprised to see the changes:

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It’s funny how seeing yourself every day can skew your view of changes that are happening. I’m definitely happy with the results!

I haven’t decided what my next installment of the FitLizzio Experiment will be, but I’m going to be scouting that out over the next few days. I’ll likely go back to lifting heavy weights for a few weeks (and incorporating the 21 Day Clutch HIIT workouts, too!) before starting my next experiment.

Question of the Day

1. What programs have you done that you like?

2. Checkout the programs on BodyBuilding.com. Anything in particular you’d like me to try next??

FitLizzio Experiment UPDATE + Weekend Fun

Hey, HEY!

How’s your Monday treating you?

Mine is quite divine if I may say so! I LOVE productive Mondays because they set the tone for the week.

I trained a client early this morning, got my own workout in, and then got started on work. It’s a busy time for us right now, so I’m being very diligent about keeping lists and calendars to make sure I get everything done on time.

FitLizzio Experiment – Day 20

Guys, I am almost done with the 21 Day Clutch! It’s been a really fun experience and I can’t wait to give you a FULL recap (progress photos and all) this week!

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Remember when I said I didn’t really like the workouts? Well, I’ve been getting more accustomed to them. They’re still not my favorite way to push myself, but I’ve come to enjoy them. I’ll likely continue to do them once per week when I’m finished with the program.

Which brings me to my next thought: Sticking with something. It’s interesting to me how my attitude towards the program has morphed over the last 20 days. I’ve gone from super stoked, to somewhat bored, to seeing results and getting excited, to wondering how to incorporate this way of training into my regular training schedule. Total 180, right?!

It proves that even though something might not SEEM like the right thing, if you stick with it, it might just become something you like. While sometimes that won’t be the case, it is something I will keep in mind going forward.

This is by far my favorite part about doing challenges. I love learning new things and seeing what I’m capable of doing. I love finding out more about myself. It’s amazing how much we don’t know! You always hear that you learn about yourself when you push yourself outside of your comfort zone, but it’s a really hard concept to grasp until you do it. I haven’t pushed myself outside of my comfort zone in far too long when it comes to working out, so this was really fun and motivating.

Look out for a post in the next few days for #allthethings related to the first installment of the FitLizzio Experiment: 21 Day Clutch.

Weekend Fun

This past weekend, my friend Torri and I launched Rockstar Fitness™ Boot Camp! Quest Nutrition was our sponsor and it was SUCH a fun day! Our class went really well and everyone loved it! I can’t wait for next Saturday!

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Special RSF Gift Bags from Quest!

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Rockstar Fitness™ Boot Camp in action!

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Wall balls!

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Our OFFICIAL Mascot: Oscar the Boxer

Our crazy group!

The rest of the weekend wasn’t quite as exciting, but was just what I needed: time with my pup, time with my man, and relaxation.

We went to breakfast at IHOP on Sunday morning (and of course, we brought Oscar).

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We followed that up with coffee, of course, and then decided to hang out by the pool for a bit.

It was a perfect day outside!

Afterwards, we went and saw Spy with Melissa McCarthy and Jason Statham. SO funny! I love MM and both Charlie and I really enjoyed it.

We came home and watched a few episodes of Better Call Saul (we just started it…so far so good!) while we ate dinner, and then I was so exhausted that I headed straight to bed.

THE END.

Question of the Day

1. What do you LOVE about boot camps?

2. What do you HATE about boot camps?

5 Ways to Love the Skin You’re In {My Story}

*If you are sensitive to or think a post about disordered eating/a poor relationship with food may be a trigger for you, please skip this post.

I’ve spoken about it on the blog before, but in case you’re new around here, let me give you a little background about me.

At the end of 2008, I got the wild idea to compete in an NPC Competition in the Bikini division. I actually really wanted to compete in the Figure division, but I had only been working out for 2 years and didn’t have much muscle mass. I spent from January – July training, doing a bunch of cardio, and dieting for the competition. The results were really good.

progress pictures

December 2008 – 147 pounds

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July 2009 – 123 pounds (i’m 5’8)

I placed 2nd in my first show, got instantly hooked on the stage high and decided to compete again 5 weeks later. I placed 5th at that show, although there were definite politics involved (as there always will be in the fitness industry).

From there, everything basically went to shit.

I had been dieting for 7 months at this point, and my will-power was wavering. I had made so many foods “off limits” that eating even just a bite of something that I had labeled “bad” set me off in a spiral. I had failed and therefore, I might as well throw this day in the trash and eat my face off.

This happened every now and then. But it started to become more frequent. I was literally spinning out of control and felt that I couldn’t stop myself.

I’d feel guilty and terrible after spending my day eating junk food, and try to make up for it by doing endless cardio (I once ran 10 miles on a treadmill to try to counteract what I had eaten the day before), and restricting my food even more. I would literally try to not eat all day or to eat as few carbs as possible. It was awful.

The cycle continued on for over a year and I was becoming depressed, gaining weight (I was bigger than I’d ever been in my life) and feeling completely lost. I thought for sure that this was how my life would be forever.

This was my heaviest. I wasn't that big, but for my body, it was way bigger than I'd ever been. I don't even recognize myself in this photo.

This was my heaviest. I weighed 163. I wasn’t that big, but for my body, it was way bigger than I’d ever been. I don’t even recognize myself in this photo.

It wasn’t until about 2010 that I started to “figure it out”. I can’t remember or pinpoint what exactly changed, but I do remember that I decided that there was nothing I could do about the weight I had gained and that I might as well be happy with the way I looked and work on myself from there, rather than missing what I had before. It was kind of like a bad breakup. I had to make the concerted effort to move on, in order to actually do so. While my mind wasn’t healthy, my body was, I could still workout like a beast, and I tried to really force myself to believe I was still beautiful, even though I was 25 pounds heavier than I was when I stepped on stage.

I decided to let myself eat what I wanted to eat. I still kept track of what I ate (and still do to this day), but if I wanted to eat a previously labeled “bad” food, I would eat it. At first, you better believe that I didn’t have any control. It wasn’t like I woke up one day and all my troubles went away.

It took me almost 2 years to rid myself of the horrible relationship with food I had. You see, over time, it became easier to eat just 1 cookie, or have just 1 small bowl of ice cream. It became easier to put the bag of chips away before they were all gone.

In 2012, I did something even more drastic. I gave up cardio.

I had known that doing a bunch of cardio wasn’t necessary, but I couldn’t really let myself believe it. I somehow, even though I knew better, still led myself to believe that I NEEDED to do cardio almost every day.

The funny thing that happened through all of this, with allowing myself to eat whatever I wanted and giving up cardio, is that I started to lose weight.

I wasn’t even trying, and yet, my clothes were fitting better and I could see more lines in my body.

Oddly enough, when I allowed “bad” foods back into my life, I realized that I didn’t actually like to eat junk food all that much. I’m much happier eating healthy proteins, fruit, vegetables, sweet potatoes, oatmeal, and many other healthy foods. Did I still like having frozen yogurt every now and then? Absolutely. But I didn’t feel the need to have it all the time. And more importantly, I could eat it without feeling like I needed more, more, more.

Giving up cardio was tough at first, but I started getting stronger. My weight training was improving, I was lifting heavier weights, and my body was leaning out.

What makes this most interesting to me is that I would advise my clients to do EXACTLY what I had finally started doing myself. I KNEW it was the best formula for years, yet, I couldn’t heed my own advice.

Because I was messed up. I had a full-blown eating disorder, hidden from the world (only not really), and felt that there was no way out.

Here I am in 2015, and I have a great relationship with food. I now train to get stronger. I do HIIT a few times a week for conditioning, because I want a strong heart. I now eat to feed my inner badass. To feed the superhero, workout warrior that I feel like I am. And sometimes? I eat because I have a craving. I no longer set myself up for failure, which I was inadvertently doing from January 2009 – August 2009.

On the blog at FitLizzio.com. Progress pics + workouts for the week.

March 2015 151 pounds

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May 2015 – 148 lbs

Shoulders are growing. WOOHOO!! Happy Friday!Large Blog ImageNew blog post is up on FitLizzio.com. I'm on my soap box today talking about how you can stop saying I CAN'T....and start doing more than you thought possible....link in profile.

I eat what I want, when I want for the most part. Of course, I still have goals and I still am working towards a leaner body. But I’m patient. And I know that restrict, restrict, restrict is NOT the answer for me. So I’m allowing myself to slowly get to where I want to be. And I’m enjoying foods that satisfy me along the way. There is nothing wrong with having weight loss goals, but how you go about them is extremely important. I learned the hard way.

This is part of the reason I feel that I can connect with so many others that are trying to lose weight. I’ve been where you are. I’ve been through A LOT. And on top of that, I’ve been educating myself for almost 10 years about nutrition, weight loss, strength training, sports specific training and cardiovascular health.

With that said, here are 5 Ways to Love the Skin You’re In..and let go of your poor relationship with food.

1. Stop labeling foods. This was by far the worst thing I’ve ever done. Processed food isn’t BAD. If you ONLY eat processed foods? It’s probably not a good thing, but having some Cheetos or a Twix bar every now and then is totally fine. In fact, I encourage people to eat at least SOME kind of treat each day. It helps keep wild cravings from coming on. (And yes, you can still do this even while you’re trying to lose fat.)

2. Be happy where you are. This was the biggest part of my recovery. I reminded myself EVERY time I looked in the mirror to be happy with where I was today and to know I could only improve from there on out. You only have one body, and treating it poorly both mentally and physically will not help you. By treating your body like a temple and keeping your thoughts about your body positive, you will have a better chance at starting to believe those thoughts. By repeating this to myself DAILY, sometimes HOURLY, I actually started to believe it. I started feeling comfortable with myself once again.

3. Make your goals fitness-based. The weight loss will follow. When I stopped working out to lose weight and started working out to be more fit, be the warrior I felt like inside, get stronger, run faster….I actually started losing weight. My fitness goals now are to get stronger. I want to squat 200lbs, I want to deadlift 300 lbs, and I want to Hip Thrust 400 lbs. Whether you want to accomplish a big goal like running a faster 5k, or just complete a small goal like getting in more reps today than you did yesterday, you will feel gratitude each time you hit those goals and start feeling more positive in the gym. It doesn’t mean you can’t strive to lose weight, but don’t let it be your main focus. Let it be the side effect of your goals.

4. Be mindful of what you eat. This doesn’t just mean to try to eat healthy foods when you can. This also means that sometimes, having a cookie IS the right answer. Sometimes an extra serving of ice cream is OK. Just not every day. Over time, as you start to develop a better relationship with food, you will find that you trust yourself with food and won’t feel the need to eat #allthecookies. You will start to know when you REALLY want a cookie and you’ll pass on them when it just doesn’t feel necessary. (If you would have told me this a few years ago, I would have told you that it isn’t possible. Your mind tricks you into thinking that you will never be able to think like a “normal” person when it comes to food. I assure you, it is possible.)

5. Let go of the guilt. Whether you are currently struggling or have struggled in the past, let go of the guilt. You are NOT a failure. You are NOT a loser. You just got caught up in an unfortunate situation. No matter how you got there, remind yourself that you don’t have to stay there. Even when it feels like there is no way out, THERE IS. If you don’t feel that you can do it on your own, reach out to someone. There are many people out there JUST LIKE YOU that can help you deal with and overcome your issues.

 I would love to hear your thoughts in the comments, but if you’d rather speak privately, feel free to e-mail me at FitLizzio@gmail.com

Why I Write My Workouts Down {Monday Motivation}

Happy Monday people!!

I love Mondays! They are even better when I get my ass outta bed and get a workout in first thing in the morning. It is always soooo hard to get out of bed to do it (I hit snooze at least 6 times every Monday), but when I’m finished with the workout, I feel ready to take on the day.

This morning, I got up and headed to the track for a little something different. Last night, I wrote down what my workout would be (as I always do), so that I could just get up, throw on workout clothes and shoes, and just start doing.

Here’s what I did:

20 minute workoutMy goal was to do about 20 minutes of work, and I was in and out of there in 25 minutes (including my warm-up).

Brain Dump

I think I was on my 3rd or 4th bleacher when I started thinking about how f*&*ing hard this workout was and how much my legs were dying. This propelled me to start thinking about what i would do if I had just decided to “wing” my workout. I probably would have settled at 5 bleachers (because it was plenty) and gone home.

Since I had written out my workout beforehand, I knew that I had slated myself to do 10 bleachers, so I wasn’t going to quit until those 10 were done. (barring any injuries or my body being LITERALLY done).

It reminded me of the importance of having a plan. If you walk in without a plan, you’ll do as much as you can, work until it gets hard, and then probably go home.  Without a plan, it’s easier to talk yourself into just finishing when you feel like it. If you finish when you feel like it, it’s usually before you’ve really hit that hard sticking point. It’s that point when you want to quit and be done. Some days, that’s okay and I do believe in listening to your body, but if you’re trying to really make changes and achieve goals, quitting when you feel like it just won’t cut it. You need to push past the sticking point to really see progress. (at least that’s my opinion, others will have their own I’m sure).

If you go in with a plan, you’re more likely to stick to that plan. You’ll do those last few reps you thought you couldn’t do, and finish the final sets you didn’t think you could do, much like I did today at the track.

IMG_7079I hobbled away from the track today with my legs visibly shaking, but I completed the workout that I set for myself. It feels really good to want to quit, but to then push through and finish strong. I knew today would be a good day because of it.

Your Turn

I challenge you to start planning your workouts. Even if that means writing it in your car before you walk into the gym (which I do allllll the time), just set a goal for yourself, and complete that goal.

As always, check with a doctor before starting any new workout program and listen to your body. Learn the difference between pushing through a sticking point and pushing TOO hard. There is a difference and the more you workout, the more you’ll start to learn when to quit and when to push through.

Post-Track Workout Face

Post-Track Workout Face

Q’s:

1. Do you plan your workouts or just wing it?

2. Do you feel like you push through your “sticking point” or do you usually quit at that point?

It’s Never Too Late

WoohoO! We made it to Friday!

I had a late-ish night last night, but only because I was hanging out with this stud muffin:

Love this little guy! :)I drank a lot of coffee today when I got up and spent this morning on back to back to back to back phone calls and am now working on emails on emails on emails. 0_o

(Oh, by the way, just a heads up! I’m doing something cool with my subscribers to help them reach their goals. If you’re curious about it, subscribe to my e-mail list and I’ll send you the info. I promise I’m not an annoying e-mailer and if you hate me, you can always unsubscribe. ;-))

* = required field

Anyways, as I was saying….I’m pretty buried today with work, but I’m hoping to crack it out in record time. When I’m in the zone, I can work pretty quickly, so I’m hoping I can get IN THE ZONE today. I took a break to blog because after being on so many phone calls, my mind just needs a minute.

It’s Never Too Late

I was recently talking to a friend of mine who is in her early 40’s and we were discussing workouts and fitness (shocker, right?). She asked me what I do for workouts and how I got my bubble butt, and so we started talking about my training. I was explaining some of the exercises I do, that I lift heavy, that I do some conditioning, and that I just stay consistent with my training. She stopped me and said to me “geez, i wish I could do that. If I was your age, I’d start training with you!”.

This woman is in decent shape, does a lot of cardio, and doesn’t have any physical disabilities, so I looked at her and said, why can’t you start now? She gave me the usual response/excuse of being too old, not having time, blah blah blah. I told her that ANYONE can start somewhere and that it’s never too late to start something new. She didn’t seem convinced, so we continued chatting.

I told her I didn’t get to deadlifting 225 overnight. It took me a lonngggggg time to build up to that. YEARS. Lifting heavy means something different for everyone, so I clarified to her that my  heavy weights are not going to be her heavy weights and that all she has to do is pick up weights that feel heavy to HER.

We discussed this for a bit and she finally started to get motivated. I could see it in her eyes that she finally believed that she probably could do that. She started getting excited and I gave her a few exercises, resources, and training tips to work on, and that she should email me in a few weeks to let me know how it’s going. She left the gym with a twinkle in her eye and I’m excited to see how it goes for her.

This completely made my day and was something I knew I wanted to share with my readers. I get into conversations just like this quite often. For some reason, someone along the way told us that our age and/or timing were the end-all-be-all for starting something new. That if you didn’t do it at a certain time or did it “too late in life” that you couldn’t do that.

….And some of us actually believe that.

That is SOOOO far from the truth. You can start ANYTHING you want at any age barring any true barriers. Look at all of the people that go back to school for their master’s degrees at 40, 50, even 60 years old. Why should training be any different? You don’t have to do what you’ve always done. It’s 2015, and almost everything is acceptable now, people. If something looks interesting, exciting, fun, or just intriguing to you….TRY IT. Know who you are and where you are in your fitness level, and just start from there. You have nobody to compete against except for yourself and when you start to notice that you’re improving, it’s a really amazing feeling.

I encourage anyone that has ever thought it was “too late” to try something new, to take the first step. Take a free fitness class, do an intro session with a personal trainer, or walk into the weight room for the first time (I promise, everyone in there is too focused on themselves to be watching you).

IT ISN’T TOO LATE. Take advantage of where you are now, and start doing something you’ve always wanted to try.

The Real Workout Starts When You Want To Stop + FitLizzio.com

Q’s:

1. What’s something new that you’ve tried recently?

2. Have you ever tried something you thought you’d love and ended up hating it after you tried it?

Stop Saying You CAN’T…

There’s so much I have to say about this topic, so I’m just going to ramble through it and hopefully you get something out of it.

Saying I can’t…

We all do it. All of us. I’m the type of person that tries not to set limits for myself, and I do truly believe that I can do anything I put my mind to, but I STILL find myself, at times, saying…I CAN’T.

Oddly enough, the most often setting that I use those words happens to be when I’m working out.

“I can’t lift that much weight”

“I can’t run that fast”

“I can’t jump that high”

I try not to do it, but i totally do. It’s a hard habit to break and sometimes it can be really hard to believe that you CAN do something.

Now, before you go step in front of a 10 foot plyo box and try to jump on it from a dead stance….let me make it clear that I’m talking about realistic things here haha….so don’t go around saying that “Lizzy said I could do anything i put my mind to so I’m going to somehow get magical powers and jump on top of this monstrosity”. I’m talking about the things you truly CAN do, but may think you cannot. Now that we’re clear, let’s keep moving…

Why We Can’t

SO, why “can’t” we do things?

The #1 reason we can’t do things is because we get stuck in our own damn heads. If you can’t get past your head, you’re screwed. That thing you want to do, can’t happen. You will be unable to do that thing because your head won’t even allow you to try. You’ve told yourself you can’t, and your body and brain will follow that.  It’s just like Henry Ford said, “Whether you think you can or cannot, you are right.”

We tell ourselves that we can’t all the time. We stay in our comfort zones and do what we KNOW we can do.  Why? Because this way, it’s harder to fail. Failing sucks. It really, really, really SUCKS!! Sometimes it hurts physically (hello dent in my shin from “missing” a step on the bleachers), sometimes it’s just flat out embarassing, and no matter what, it makes you feel shitty. Isn’t it so much better when you do things you know you can do and accomplish them??

Well, yes and no.

Of course, it does feel good to accomplish things you know you can do….. but when you do something you originally thought you couldn’t do…and then you actually DO IT….

Holy fuck balls….THAT feels good. It feels like you’re high on drugs…it feels like you are floating on a cloud…like you can walk on water (although I don’t recommend trying that). It’s absolutely one of the best feelings in the world.

So I’m here to explain to you why you CAN. And how to get OUT of your head.

The Gray Area

When I lived in Arizona, I trained with an old power lifter guru genius type guy named Karl. We used to call him God because he was the healer and knower of everything when it came to the body. Your back hurts? He could fix it. Your legs are sore? He’ll roll them out with a PVC pipe until you cry…and until they feel better. You can’t add weight to your back squat or deadlift?….Karl fixed this too.

My experience with Karl was extremely impactful. I remember very clearly when I first started training with him.  I was always telling him what I could and couldn’t do. I think he got really sick of it, and one day he decided to do something about it.

He took me to a decline leg press and loaded it up with more plates than I could count. I looked at him for a few seconds and finally asked “are you serious?” He wasn’t smiling..he wasn’t joking…he looked at me and said “yes…now let’s do this.”

At first, I thought for sure he was just messing with me. I explained to him, once again, that there was no way on earth that I’d be able to complete even 1 rep with that weight. His response to me was “so what? try it.”

I was freaking out thinking what if I get stuck??? What will I do then??

I still felt like he was off his rocker, but when God tells you to do something, I guess you do it.

I put my feet up, lifted off, got to the bottom and sure enough, I couldn’t move. The panic set in and I looked at Karl with a look of complete and utter terror. He just sat there smiling at me and said “just let the weight go all the way down.”

WHAT? I’m going to get stuck!! (meanwhile, I’m holding up 2349083 pounds and sweating, unable to move.) Again, he said: Just let the weight go.

And so slowly, i let my knees press into my chest, as the weight went down. And suddenly, the only pressure was my knees against my chest. And the weight was quietly resting at the bottom of the leg press.

And I was fine.

I didn’t die.

I didn’t get hurt.

I didn’t get stuck.

This was my first lesson in breaking through the gray matter in my head. The gray matter… the stuff in your head that holds you back from trying, in fear of failure.

Lesson 2 came a few days later in the squat rack. He did the same thing. He set up the safety bars, loaded the bar up with more weight than I’d ever done, and told me to squat. Now, Karl knows me and knew I had good enough form and instinct that I could handle this test, and that if i couldn’t do the weight, I’d be able to get out of it unharmed. KARL KNEW THIS…but I didn’t.

Once again, I put the weight on my back, squatted down as low as I could go, tried to get back up, and NOPE. Not moving. My legs started shaking, my heart was pounding and I was looking at Karl in hopes that he would save me.

Again, he looked at me and just told me to get all the way to the floor and let the safety bars hold the weight. I did…and sat on the ground, the weight off my back and on the safety bars.

Once again,

I didn’t die

I didn’t get hurt

i didn’t get stuck.

These two lessons were soooo important in my growth as a weight lifter. I was stuck in a bubble of telling myself what I could and could not do. And while Karl was purposefully giving me weights that I could NOT do, he was teaching me that it didn’t hurt me to try. His lessons showed me that if I could just get past the gray matter in my head, and TRY to do the things that scared me, I could do them. My squat weight went up in a huge way from that point on. I went from thinking 95lbs was my max, to squatting 135 just the next week. I could only do 1 rep at that point, but I could still do it. This was about 5 years ago now, and these lessons are still something that hold true to me to this day.

A few weeks ago, I squatted 185 and deadlifted 225. Those were weights that I NEVER thought i could get to. But every week, i try to do a little bit more. Sometimes I fail and it SUCKS BALLS…but it also lights a fire in me. I remember failing at 165 several weeks ago and immediately wanting to do everything I could to break through that and squat more weight. 5 years ago, I would have just stopped and stuck to lighter weight, thinking that was all I could do….but now? Now I know that isn’t true. Now I know that if I just put in the effort day in and day out, the results will come.

I would estimate that about 75% of not being able to do something, is likely because of you. It’s most likely because you’ve told yourself that you can’t do it. This could mean that you don’t try, or it could mean that you give a little bit of effort, but give up after a while because you just don’t think you can do something.

If you can just get past that gray matter…if you can just start to try a little more, a little harder….you might be surprised at what you actually CAN do.

Now, I’m definitely not saying to go get yourself stuck in a squat rack, but I’m telling you to do a little more than you thought you could do, each time you try. This doesn’t just go for weight lifting. This goes for LIFE in general.

Whether you’re trying to start a business, get a promotion, or just lift heavier weights, do something every day to try to get a little bit better. The big goals that you don’t think you can achieve are successfully reached by the small goals that you work on day in and day out.

Start thinking with an I CAN attitude…remind yourself of the gray matter in your head, and BREAK THROUGH IT.

Your life will be infinitely better when you do.

5 Things I Do Everyday to Stay Healthy

Staying healthy in an unhealthy world can be really, really tough.

Are you surprised that I called the world unhealthy?

Obviously, not the whole world is unhealthy, but there sure is an abundance of it.

In the U.S. alone:

 

  • 68.5% of adults are overweight or obese; 34.9% are obese.
  • 31.8% of children and adolescents are overweight or obese; 16.9% are obese.

(Source: www.frac.org)

Personally, I think one of the toughest ways to get around this is the temptation that is literally EVERYWHERE.

I’m healthy, but I’m also human. Do you think that just because I’m a fitness professional that I don’t get tempted by all of the marketing ploys that surround me at the grocery store? Of course they do!

It’s tough, man. You head to the store with a healthy mindset of the fresh fruits, vegetables, and lean meats that you’re going to buy when BAM, there’s a bag of chips in your face and oh, how bout those cookies to your left? Don’t look to the right…it’s ICE CREAM!

I’d be lying if I said I never gave in. I do give in sometimes (which is totally fine)….but I wish it wasn’t even there! I want to make that decision WITHOUT it being shoved in my face.

In any sense, the crap food IS there and in our faces, and it’s there to stay. That isn’t necessarily a bad thing either, as long as you can practice moderation. I personally love ice cream, chips, and cookies and eat all of them. Just not very often.

So in a world that seems to be closing in on us with all kinds of unhealthy foods, how do we stay healthy day in and day out?

5 Things I Do EVERY DAY to Stay Healthy

1. Drink Water. I know you’re probably sick of hearing this, but seriously. If you’re going to do nothing else that day to be healthy, drink some water. Or even a lot of water.

2. Sneak in some fruit and vegetables. Even if you’re going to have a bunch of crappy foods, sneak in some fruits and vegetables beforehand. It can help you stay a bit fuller so you don’t eat as much crap and it gives you boost of antioxidants and vitamins. (Plus, they’re delicious!!)

3. Walk. I workout most days, and still try to walk places when it’s possible and I have the time. Sometimes I drive places that are definitely walkable, but if I’m having a lazier day, I always opt for some type of walk. I’ll go walk to the coffee shop, or to the Co-Op. If there’s nothing close-by, I’ll just walk around outside to get my legs moving a bit. Even if you plan on sitting around all day, find 15 minutes to just take a walk.

4. Eat a healthy breakfast. I’ve learned over the years that whatever I have for breakfast sets the tone for the day. For example, if I eat something sugary for breakfast, I feel lethargic and gross. That spirals me into just feeling meh, and most likely, my food and exercise choices for the day will follow that. If I eat a healthy breakfast, I know that my chances of a healthy day are that much greater. I can honestly say, I haven’t had an unhealthy breakfast in over a year. (Just a personal choice.) Do I think it’s bad to have an unhealthy breakfast here and there? Of course not, but I do know that I can always have an unhealthy breakfast for dinner if I still want it. (Breakfast for dinner is the BOMB anyways!) I’d rather start my day out with good foods that will likely set me up for a better day. I highly encourage you to try testing this theory out to see how it affects your choices for the rest of the day.

5. Don’t take the day too seriously. If I’m having a lazy day where I don’t exercise much and I’m eating less than stellar foods, I don’t sweat it too much. There was a time where I would internally beat myself up so badly for not eating well or not exercising. These days, I remind myself that one meal or one day of unhealthy eating isn’t going to ruin anything. As long as I consistently eat well and exercise, I’ll be on a good path.

Question of the Day

What are some things you do every day to stay healthy?

 

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