Tag Archives: abandon

Fit Body Boot Camp- Week 13- Meet the Boss Lady, Sara Goossen

Fitness CAN be fun, with Sara Goossen!
Fitness CAN be fun, with Sara Goossen!

Are you familiar with the action of a wrecking ball?

That is Sara Goossen in a nutshell. The lady is powerful, energetic, and ready to knock excuses out of the way. She is a bright and compassionate person who sees the potential in people and then helps individuals harness their inner bad ass. This talent is an imperative staple in her personal business model.

October 1, 2012, Sara opened Fit Body Boot Camp- Cheyenne, with 14 clients. Her goal is to change the lives of 5000 of Cheyenne’s citizens by 2017. As of April 2015, she has trained and cultivated a community of 1200 residents who are interested in adopting a healthy life style. That is an average of 400 people a year, getting active and aware in the fair city of Cheyenne and it’s surrounding areas. No small feat for this 5’3″ wrecking ball.

Sara and I got together to discuss her fitness past and her optimistic fitness future; how she came to start FBBC and some of her own trials and tribulations in the fitness process.

Before I jump into the interview, I would like to state that when you are looking for a gym, and a support system to help you change your habits; having a leader like Sara is imperative because she has run the gamut of unhealthy eating and body weight issues. She has children, she knows struggles and excuses. She has taken initiative on her own, in her own life in order to transcend her past hang ups. In turn Sara has turned hardships into valuable insight for those at any point in their fitness journey.

It may be easier for certain people to take her ethic very seriously because she didn’t start out on this lifestyle right after high school or college before having children; when most women’s bodies are still in that youthful metabolism. She wasn’t always healthy. It was a choice that she had to dedicate herself to; which meant a long road of challenges that led to the changes that are evident in her today.

Let’s find out more, shall we?

March/April 2015; back in  the game after a 2 month break.
March/April 2015; back in the game after a 2 month break.

STATS

AGE: 28

HEIGHT: 5’3″

WEIGHT: 145.3 lbs

FAVORITE EXERCISE: RUNNING STAIRS, WORKING THE BACK, AND SQUATS

LEAST FAVORITE EXERCISE: BUILDING CLIMBERS

Breaks are temporary... This lady is out to GET IT DONE!
Breaks are temporary… This lady is out to GET IT DONE!

Let’s talk about your fitness past, eating disorders, all that stuff.

It goes so far back, it’s disturbing… so, okay, 10 years old; my mom told me I needed to stop eating granola bars because they were making me fat and at that point in time I had just finished some book, I can’t remember the title of, and it was talking abou this girl who would throw up, because she was so fat. So…I…followed suit.

Thank God for Children’s Literature, right?

Yeah, I was like, “Well, now I am well informed and I can solve this problem.

(Sara reminences with awkward laughter.)

So, at ten years old that started fourteen years of just roller coaster disordered eating; ranging the spectrum of binging and purging to just starving myself. When I got pregnant with my son, when I was sixteen, I kind of just said “Fuck it. It doesn’t matter if I am skinny; it doesn’t matter if I am fat…I am pregnant. I can eat whatever I want and have no guilt.” I gained 50 pounds when I was pregnant with him, and I lost ten. I lost some weight nursing, but after I stopped nursing him, I continued the disordered eating cycle.

Just picked it up where you left off?

Yep, just picked it up right where I left off. And I knew… I was an athlete in high school, I knew about nutrition but it’s not something that I ever listened to because disordered eating was so much easier than learning how to feed myself. At nineteen I married my now ex-husband, (my daughters’ father) and gained all that “happy weight” I maxed out the scale before we got married, at 197 lbs…. so, I looked like a cow in my wedding dress.

None of this happens over night... it takes time to get to either end of the spectrum.   Which one would you prefer to be closer to?
None of this happens over night… it takes time to get to either end of the spectrum. Which one would you prefer to be closer to?

Thank god for girdles….

After that we were trying to get pregnant with Emma, and couldn’t get pregnant… couldn’t get pregnant. We tried for two years, and I finally went to the doctor and asked “what is going on?” I was diagnosed with Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS) and the doctor told me that I had to make a lifestyle change, or else…. “you’re going to end up with diabetes; you are more apt to have certain types of cancer, you are just going to get fatter, your thyriod is going to peter out…” All the things that go along with PCOS… “This is your future. You either make a change now or enjoy your future where it is headed.”

At that point I sought help because I knew my disorder was no longer a sustainable way to live life. It wasn’t mentally or emotionally healthy.

So I lost about 20 lbs. and we got pregnant with Emma through a series of fertility treatments. When I was pregnant with Emma I only gained about 20 lbs and then I lost it all right away. At that point they (the doctors) said “Well you are probably not going to be able to have any more children, so don’t worry about it.” And I thought, okay, cool; I am just going to go back to doing the whole weight loss thing, because I still had fifty pounds to go.

So I lost another twenty pounds, and then I got pregnant with my daughter Ileena… BOOM! I remember going to my dads house and saying, “Well… I am pregnant again just when I was gettting my ‘sexy’ back.” My grandma looks at me and says “Well honey, maybe that’s the problem.”

Double edged sword on that one…

Yeah! So I got pregnant and did that whole thing and I only gained fifteen pounds with Ailena , and I lost that all right away. November 2009 I found Body For Life, Bill Phillips, transformation.com ; whom I heard about from my step-mom. So I thought, I am going to try this thing. (Everybody thought I was crazy for starting during the holidays.) It was pretty easy; three days of lifting, three days of cardio, all high intensity intervals. By doing that the next three months I was able to loose the rest of the weight. About half way through that three month process I was like “Ya, know, I want to help other people because I can do this as some one who has struggled their whole life with eating well and taking care of themselves … I can help some one else do this.”

I got my personal training certification.

How long did that take you?

It was about four months and about that time I was working for my dad as his administrative assistant amoung other things. I decided that I would try this training thing before and after work, and see what happens. I did that and it just blew up, so in June 2010, I quit my job working for my dad and I started training full time.

I was doing a lot of one on one training and two boot camp sessions at a local gym. I was making money, doing something I love. I worked there for two years and I left because there were some issues that made it neccessary for me to get out of that environment. I decided, I am just going to start my own place; I left and they came after me with for violating my no-compete/ no-solicitation agreement.

Looking back, I was so mad at the time. I was furious, like how could they do this? How can this stand up? Well, it stood up because I had solicited the people who had signed up with me, but were also their clients. I had to take a year off of training and I went back to working for my dad for a year and within that year I knew I needed to do something. I was miserable.

When you are following a life of passion and suddenly it is taken away; it’s like the wind has been knocked out of your sails. You don’t even feel like a human being. I started looking down in Colorado for places I could move to and open up. I was doing all this during the same time I was being sued and working for my dad; I also had gotten a divorce from my kids father. It was everything that could go wrong, did.

I was at an impass; like shit, what do I do?

I looked down in Boulder and I spent about six months driving back and forth, just looking for a location I could open up. I encountered road block after road block.

By this point I had already talked to the CEO of Fit Body, who has been a long time friend. I told them, I want to do this but I have to wait until this year is up or I am screwed.

Was that part of your Non-compete agreement? Did you have a time limit to wait?

Yes, that was the year. One year to the day, October 1, 2012; we opened up with fourteen clients. I was just so excited to be open and be able to do what I love to do. That’s it… the rest is history. Here we are today; looking for another space, a bigger place… sitting down with the bank and talking about bigger loans.

The beginning bare bones of a fitness fortress in the making.
The beginning bare bones of a fitness fortress in the making.

That’s pretty quick, only three years.

Yeah, less than three years actually.

How do you know the CEO of Fit Body?

The fitness industry is so small, it really is. So if you don’t know every one you soon will if you stay in it long enough. I met him doing a master mind. I was in there with the two founders of Fit Body Boot Camp, Steve Hochman and Bedros Keuilian. I was in Steve’s Master Mind and through that I met Bedros. We had several conversations and talked on the phone several times, emailed back and forth; He called me up one day and said ” What’s it going to take to get you to open a Fit Body? And I told him, “You know what it will take, you know what I am up against right now. It’s going to have to take one hell of a deal and some patience and that is where it’s at.” So he said “Alright, let’s make it happen.”

At this point it was going from licensing to a franchise, so they were looking for people and I just happened to be one of those people.

Do you get together with other gym owners?

I do know a lot of the Fit Body owners simply because we get together quarterly; every three months, usually in San Diego or Chino Hills, California. There is a great community with in Fit Body, even from a corporate structure coming all the way down to the clients. It’s nice that we can just continue to pay it forward. It’s pretty cool, and a very unique situation.

Would you like to talk about your competition stuff?

OH YEAH! Sure! I don’t want to bore you to tears with business.

I first competed in August of 2011, I also ran the Denver half marathon in October 2010, and after that I gave myself permission to never run again. (laughter.) I find it really useless and painful. It turns out I am better suited for lifting heavy things than go fast.

2011 looks good on Sara Gosseen!
2011 looks good on Sara Gosseen!

Did you do this on your year of sabbatical?

No, it was right before everything blew up in my face. Then I competed in my second figure show August 2013.

2013 looked even better!
2013 looked even better!

Did you win anything?

I did. I placed 5th in the second show, I was pretty excited about that. Granted there were only six figure competitors, so I was 5th, but I was happy to have something to take home, regardless.

My first show I did there were 36 figure competitors, and I think I finished 34th. So I was like, “I think I have improved!”

'High Knees
‘High Knees” are different than heinies… make sure both are in good form!

Were these in Wyoming?

The one in 2011 was in Loveland, Colorado. The Warrior Classic, and the other one was in Wyoming, and that was the Jay Cutler Classic. And that Dude, is a Big Dude. I have a picture of him somewhere.

Not only is Jay Cutler bohemoth, but he makes Sara look like a tiny lil tea cup.  Jay Cutler Classic 2013.
Not only is Jay Cutler bohemoth, but he makes Sara look like a tiny lil tea cup. Jay Cutler Classic 2013.

 

He was there?

Yeah, he is huge! He is a moose of a man! My head is as big as his shoulder!

He could pick you up in the palm of his hand!

Honestly I am getting the bug again, to compete. I am trying to weigh out the time commitment that it takes, along with my other obligations to see what it will take… if it’s something I can feasibly do right now while keeping everything else balanced. I do love competing .

If you wait to have your own place, you could put on your own competition, in house competition. Then you won’t have to go too far.

That is one of the most fun things about competition; you get to meet so many interesting people from all over the country. People who are busting their asses just to get super lean for just a minute. It literally lasts a day. You deplete enough to have a six pack for a day, and then you gain 20 pounds the next day because you drink water. It’s crazy.

It would be interesting to time lapse a person going through the build up to competition, and then the 24 hours afterward. Once you get the tanner off, and start drinking water again, it’s like what the hell? You blossom like a flower.

You still eat, you carb load the day of to fill out your muscles because you have depleted to the point that you have taken all the glycogen and striped your body of literally everything. It’s not something you want to do often because it is kind of dangerous, BUT, it’s still fun to push your mental ability and physical barriers. That is big for me, because I love the challenge.

Are you a challenge junkie?

I totally am! I love the personal challenge. Competing against other people is fun, but figure prep is anywhere from 2-5 months.

It’s kind of interesting that you have struggled with disordered eating which is in and of itself sort of an addiction, and pushing your body to a limit and challenging it, but not in a very healthy way. And here you have turned your addiction around to a healthier way of expressing it. Yet, there are still these extremes that you go to.

It totally is. What I think helps me with competing and the lifestyle of body building is the structure that it provides. It’s like a security blanket. You take some one with an eating disorder who has struggled with that their entire life, and you say, “you don’t have to struggle, here is some structure. Have a nice day.” It’s like, “okay, this is safe.”

Then the biggest struggle, is will power to be able to keep on the regamine.

Yeah, it’s like any other fitness goals… as long as you have that dead line… the finish line at the end; it makes it that much easier. It’s not like you have to do this for a lifetime or else… It’s here is your dead line, and then you reset the goal. And that is something that is really, really exciting for me.

Through competing I learned to accept my body, where ever it is; whether I am 120 pounds or 145. I am still strong, I am still beautiful and I am still worthy of love and acceptance and success. That is one of those things that I have accidentally learned through the process. It is a by product.

I know a lot of people who compete who struggle with that mindset. Like if they don’t have a six pack they are done for. They are like “Oh My God, My Life Is OVER!”

It basically boils down to bulemia or dysmorphia. It’s all activated on the same brain wave length, same neurological pathway. It’s been nice to find freedom from that as I have gotten older. To not be stressed out about the numbers, to see yourself and be like “You look good!”

IT’s a good example to your kids, too.

I hope so. Sometimes I wonder, “am I ruining these little people?”

Mommy, Wife, Business Owner and Encourager of the Masses... what can't this lady do?         Photo courtesy of  Lacey Dippold Photography
Mommy, Wife, Business Owner and Encourager of the Masses… what can’t this lady do? Photo courtesy of Lacey Dippold Photography

Instead of “You’re the reason mommy has a drinking problem,” it’s more like “You are the reason mommy has an exercise problem.”

That’s funny beacause when I took two months off earlier this year, my kids were like “what is wrong with her?” I did not feel like myself. I felt like I was insane most days; like absolutely bat shit crazy.

You needed to be exerting yourself.

Yeah, I needed that rush of endorphins and I think it was something that I had always taken for granted because I have been doing it for so long, it’s just been part of my life for so long. When I completely took it out, I had no idea the impact it would have on me. Not just physically but spiritually, emotionally and mentally. I got to tell you, the week we started working out again, my husband and I; He was like “Gosh you are so much easier to be around.” And I knew he meant that in the sweetest way possible, instead of being a jerk, and I was like “I know, trust me, it’s easier to be in my head.” I went to the doctor and I asked am I schitzophrenic, what is going on here? And she said “I think you are depressed.” And I just needed exercise.

So tell me about your favorite success story to come out of here.

My favorite one, honestly, is from when I very, very first started. He followed me when I opened Fit Body. His name is Austin, he was 16 when he came to me he was 386 lbs. and he was tall and huge. He knew he had a problem. He was home schooled so he didn’t have a lot of interaction with other kids. The reason he was home schooled was because when he was in school, the other kids were just horrible to him because he was so big and kind of awkward and quiet.

He would come, every single day to Boot Camp. At that point in time, they were 1 1/2 hour sessions, he would show up at 6:00 AM, every day. And even if he couldn’t do it, he would struggle through it.

He asked me, “what do I eat? how do I do it?”

His mom was onboard, but I didn’t see her much. Sometimes she would come and walk while he did Boot Camp. Every now and then she would come talk to me, well when I took the year off, Austin started power lifting and he took his focus off the weight loss. Then he came over to Fit Body when I opened, and he brought his mother with him, and they did it together.

It was just so, so, so cool. He ended up losing 110 lbs by the time he was 19. Then they moved to Oregon. He was such a great, great kid. It was just so cool to see how he was able to influence his mom because it’s usually the parents who influence the kids. He was able to influence his mom after two years of going at it by himself.

Was she also over-weight?

Yes, she was, but such a nice, nice gal. I look back on those two, especially Austin and I think “That kid could have made every excuse in the world because teenagers do, adults do. Teenagers learn from what the adults model.” He just was like “I am tired of this. I am tired of being the ‘fat kid’. I don’t mind being a ‘big kid’, I am 6’3″. But I am tired of being the ‘fat kid'”

The last Halloween he was here, he dressed up as The Hulk; and that involved taking off his shirt, and painting himself green, and walking around with out a shirt on. Two years prior to that you would have never seen him do that. It was so cool to see him blossom from this awkward quiet, video gamer (indoor) kid to this little ball of life and energy, and sass.

It was fun to not only see his journey of weight loss but also to see how he grew as a person. To see him evolve into an adult from a kid that just didn’t want to be fat and made fun of.

Do you stay in contact with him?

I do. I stay more into contact with his mom because he is a young adult now and all over the place.

It would be interesting to see if he takes a career in Fitness from this influence. It seems like people who a great at teaching come from a past of being ostersized.

So, we have touched on this, but obviously Fitness has a positive effect on your homelife.

Oh God, yeah! The kids are like “Mom, go work out, you are driving us crazy.” It is also nice though, because my husband and I can share it together. Every morning Monday through Saturday we go work out together, and then go to work and do our thing. It’s been a good bonding experience for us too. Although it did take us three years for him to come and work out with me. The first time we exercised together, he was having a bad day and we were just friends at the time. I was like “he’s having a bad day, just go lift, and he will be fine.” Well a half hour in, he is dry heaving on himself, and I was like ” I thought you were in shape?” Well, after that he didn’t come back to work out with me for three years. And he comes to boot camp, and he makes it through the whole thing, and after that he said “I am going to have to wait until you are ‘deconditioned’ a little before we can work out together.”

He took the oppertunity while I took two months off to “even the playing field.”

Since then it has been nice, in the last couple of months to have that morning time with my husband because we have five kids… we need that time together. It’s nice to have that time and cheer each other on.

What are some of your future goals?

Really my mission is just to help people and it always has been. I am in the business of changing lives and if I am not changing lives, then I am doing something wrong.

Watch out folks....
Watch out folks….

YOU RUINED MY LIFE THROUGH EXERCISE!

Ha, ha! Oh man, if some one said that to me, I would have to reevalute everything. I really do just want to leave an impact on this world. And, Cheyenne… God Bless it, and all of it’s citizens; (but Cheyenne) is a FAT city. Overweight, unhealthy; spiritually, mentally and physically. People are over worked and under paid, or over worked and over paid. They have little or no time for their families , no time for themselves; no time to do anything. So we have people spinning their wheels, but for what? At the end of the day if you don’t have your health, you have nothing left. I don’t want to out live my children. I see obese kids around and I want to slap their parents. I don’t want to beat the kids, but I want to slap the parents. It makes me so mad. But then I look at it, and you have to change the lives of the parents before you can change the lives of the children. At the end of the day, it is our job as adults to make those responsible decisions. It isn’t easy, but it is our responsiblity.

It’s in my heart to change the health of this community, if not the entire community of Wyoming, but that’s a long way off down the road. I want to continue to make a difference in peoples health and in their lives.

Thirty minutes of exercise might not seem like much, but it can change how a wife treats her husband. She is in a better mood, she feels better about herself, she feels more attractive… she actually wants to be with her husband instead of saying ” I don’t see what you see, at all.”

It changes how a mother treats her children because she has more energy, she will want to take them to the park, or go hiking and do stuff. Or maybe she is just in a better mood and doesn’t want to paddle their butts just for being little people.

It is just fitness, it is just a work out… but it can change EVERYTHING. I have seen it with myself. I saw it when I started my journey years ago and I still see it today. If I don’t work out, I need to work out because I start feeling ‘cagey’ inside. Anxious.

What has your biggest triumph been in your personal fitness journey?

I think just staying the course. Every day is a new day. I can’t say one event has been a real defining moment in my health and fitness journey. I think it just staying course with the lifestyle. I mean sometimes I fall off, just like anyone. I go on a little cookie diet, when I feel stressed, and then I gain eight pounds and then I have to lose it again. At the end of the day just knowing that I am doing what I need to be doing is just great. But when I am not doing that I can tell a difference. So for me, it’s just committing to the lifestyle.

Is there anything you would want to change?

No. Not really because I believe even the hard stuff is lessons. And I think I am far more grateful now toward some of the hardships that I went through. When you look back at it, it just gives you an oppertunity to learn about yourself; to learn about others and the way the world works. Hardships are often self inflicted. So if anything it’s just learning about who I am and who I want to be and who I do not want to be. It’s just about growing up.

Would you like to give any tips or inspiration?

It’s just about consistency. You have to pick and plan and be consistent. It doesn’t matter what your plan is, as long as it has some good foundation of physical health, mental health and spiritual health. Even if it’s CrossFit or lifting or body building or boot camp; whatever it is, I think it’s just about picking something that works for you and stick with it. I know Boot Camp isn’t for everyone. I wish it was. At the end of the day finding something that works and sticking with it long enough to get results. So many people just go about their life by starting a new program every two weeks, saying “But I am just not getting results.” and I am like “Dude, it’s only been two weeks. Do you know how long it took me to lose 70 pounds?”

How long did it take you?

Beginning to end it took three years. Granted I got pregnant twice in between, but it took me three years to lose that 70 pounds. It’s not going to happen over night.

After spending all this time taking other peoples measurements; when do people, on average see a difference for themselves and accept that change is occurring?

Typically eight weeks, especially for women. I call it an 8 Week Miracle. Literally nothing on the scale can change and inches may not change, but may be your clothes fit differently. For whatever reason the inches may not change, your body fat may not change, and then one day you wake up and somewhere between the bedroom and the bathroom, you realize you lost your ass. It’s like it’s just fallen off somwhere and you hop on the scale and you are down ten pounds from the night before. And you will be like “what the hell? My scale must be broken.”

So you call in a spouse or a loved one and you have them hop on the scale and it says what it always says to them, and you hop back on there and it says the same thing, “you are down 10 lbs.”

You have to trust the process, long enough. Not just “half commit.”

“Oh I am just gonna work out for eight weeks and hope that everything is going to happen. You have to have a plan. Have a plan of attack and exicute it flawlessly. Even if you have one bad day, okay, perfect; get back on the band wagon, but don’t let that one bad day or one bad meal derail you for the next six months.

So I think that is the key. Consistency. You have to be consistent, no matter what. And that goes with anything; if it’s fitness related, or business related, or if you want better relationships. What ever it is, BE CONSISTENT! STICK WITH YOUR PLAN! Things WILL change.

In summery; Knowledge, is the awareness that all action has a reaction, and Wisdom, is using that awareness to your advantage whilst utilizing all available resources.

Fit Body Boot Camp works because of the significant insight that the program lends through collaborative Wisdom and Experience.

Fit Body Boot Camp is calling out more of Cheyenne to get involved in their fitness; and during the month of May we are taking extra efforts to expose residents to the opportunity.  If you have been following this blog and you are tempted to try it; COME ON DOWN!  Let them know you read this blog and that it has helped you to take the first step in health and wellness; or if you are new to town and looking for a fitness community and this seems up your alley, come take a test drive.

You can find out more by going to fitbodybootcamp.com/cheyennefitnessbootcamp, or on Facebook Fit Body Boot Camp Cheyenne.

If this article interests you and you would like to read more, check out these related blogs.  And as always I appreciate “likes”, comments, suggestions and subscribers; so  please feel free to interact.  And remember kids, Fitness is great, but Burpees SUCK!

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Fit Body Boot Camp: Day Five (help i’m alive)

 Lyrics for Help I’m Alive By Metric
It’s FRIDAY!!!  I made it a straight five day run!! And, guess what?!?! I am still alive!
My body is sore, and tired… my brain has slowed down a little from the hyper-drive it was whirring at last Friday, when I was anticipation of my first day at Cheyenne Fit Body Boot Camp.
I have discovered that most of my anxiety was about attempting to make it to the 5 am class, and the need to have to set an alarm for that to happen.  To solve that problem, I decided to commit to a time that is actually more conducive to my natural schedule; so now I can tell people I have got to go get, “My Nooner.”  Yes, folks, this IS the MOST action I have seen or had in YEARS! (wink wink)
It has been a pleasant diversion to have something to look forward to on a daily basis that gets me out of the house, and around people with a common goal.  It has been very interesting and insightful interacting with fellow Fitters in our private online accountability group.
This is something that most people who go to a regular gym probably have never experienced.  We literally have access to 24 hour accountability… if you have the connection to the interwebs, you can get a pretty rapid response from some one.  It’s pretty cool.  Go to work and tempted by birthday cake?  Someone will remind you of your goals.  Eat the cake anyway?  Some one will remind you, that you are human, and to get over yourself and get back on task for the rest of the day and week.
It’s not even tough love, it is a support group and a common unity.  I haven’t been in one of those for a while.
Five days isn’t long in the greater scheme of things, but it does bring me five days closer to how I would like to look and feel.
On October 2, 2013 I made this blog post, I want a better body, I want a better mind.
Many of the things I wanted THEN, are attainable by going through the Fit Body Boot Camp.  I didn’t know about the program then; and even IF  I had… I probably wouldn’t have gone anyway.  I wasn’t mentally ready, I hadn’t reached my rock bottom.
I have literally felt super high all week.  I am excited at the fact that this is going to continue to challenge me for as long as I choose to continue… No boredom here folks! I look forward to getting more into the diet end of things, in order to systematically change my bodies current state of affairs.
I’m going to tell you another one of my reasons why this excites me; I am kind of addicted to “before/after” pictures.  When I was in high school I was an average sized girl, I have always had big thighs and hips.  I wanted to get all my gym credits out of the way, so I took a weight lifting class, along with regular phys. ed.
I found myself in the weights class with a bunch of football players and wrestlers.  The coach had us all on one program; weekly maxing out. At my peak I could squat 320lbs. and dead lift 120 lbs.  As proud as I was of my strength, I hated how I looked.  I was building muscles and not burning fat.  I later learned that I should have been doing more reps with less weight. And, that the coach wasn’t worried about the body prerogative his female students.
Eh, you live and learn I guess.
Lucky for all of us our bodies are pretty malleable things, and if we set them up for success, they will usually follow suit.
Back to those Before/After photos; have you ever seen yourself in an old photo and thought, “hey I didn’t look so bad back then, I was being hard on myself,”  or the opposite “what the hell.. I don’t even recognize myself”?   I sure do.  Well I want a new one.  One that I look at and say “DAMN!”
And with that, I can’t even think of an excuse you might have today.

Fit Body Boot Camp : Day Four (mod some more)

Merriam-Webster Dictionary defines “Humble” as,

: not proud : not thinking of yourself as better than other people

: given or said in a way that shows you do not think you are better than other people

: showing that you do not think of yourself as better than other people

Day Four of Boot Camp put that word into action.

Ashley was coaching again today, and let me tell ya; to watch her, is a humbling experience.  She has worked hard to make these exercises look easy and with precise form.

I will be the first to admit; sometimes I am a klutz (my name ain’t Grace for a reason), and sometimes I really struggle with hand, eye and foot coordination.  Today was one of those days.

IT is a humbling experience to KNOW you look like a fool trying to figure something out.  However, in my honest opinion, it is better to look like a fool while attempting hard a perfection, than it is to show off and potentially hurt yourself.

Today was jam packed (yet again) with physical activities that I do not have the strength to perform with out modification.

To watch Ashley demonstrate modifications is like watching a knife go through a soft stick of butter; effortless.

So in my head, I’m all like, “Yeah, okay, I can do that.”  But in actuality, my body is all like, “What the HELL? This BURNS!”

Modifications are not for pansy asses; in fact modifications are building blocks to getting to the full expression of the desired activity.  It is terribly humbling to KNOW that I am not yet strong enough to do certain things that only a few years ago, I probably would have had less trouble with.

It is humbling to know that what looks easy, isn’t always so; and that like a symphony all parts and pieces must work together  in harmony to reach the desired effect.  It’s humbling to literally have your ass in the air and be called out for improper form.

But, you know what?  It isn’t the least bit embarrassing (for me).  I KNOW, my trainers want me to be safe and to do things correctly to prevent strain and injury.  In that knowing I can let the Ego rest, and just listen and follow directions.

I don’t feel cornered or embarrassed because  it is probably rare for a person, who has never done something before, to be perfect on the first try.  Again reminded, that everyone starts somewhere.  There is no need to be ashamed by the process.

I admit, there are some things in life that I have mastered on first attempt; this is not one of them; and it makes me reflect on those times when it was me in the Master Seat.  Did I gloat?  Did I criticize those who weren’t up to par?  No.  I would offer encouragement and advice.  This is a huge part of the philosophy of Cheyenne Fit Body, and this is why this program resonates with me.

Coaches are not yelling at you to tell you how horrible you are; They are however yelling at you to keep going, and to not give up.  They are yelling encouragingly at you… and when you make it to an end of a session, you really feel like you accomplished something.

Even with modifications, I could feel the burn, and the burn means you are WORKING it!

If your excuse is, ” I am afraid of looking like a fool and being publicly embarrassed in front of people I barely know.”  I say pshhha.  That doesn’t happen here by fault of any trainer.  If you are embarrassed, KNOW , that too is all in your head.

To bring this point home, on the lighter side of things; I asked what some of the Fitters greatest fears were in class.  Not a single one said “fear of embarrassment.”

The most common answer, was “Farting during class.”  To which one of the trainers admitted happens A LOT.

Let’s face it, gas is a totally normal part of living.  Every one does it.

Part of the Fit Body Boot Camp is a dietary change; some are more sensitive to it than others.  Farts happen, I like to think of it as, my butt is giggling.  Farts are funny, people will use their mouths to giggle about it.

You know what would be more embarrassing than farting?   Holding it in so long that  you create a pathological distention of the bowel.  Imagine explaining that to your friends and trainers.

Get comfortable with natural functions of the body, and you will alleviate a lot of unnecessary worry that may be tainting your pretty little brain.

Are you interested in getting back into shape, and want to do it in a safe and encouraging environment??  Live in the Cheyenne , Wyoming area?  Click HERE.   Want to find a boot camp in your area, or start one of your own?  Click this link.

Didn’t catch the beginning of this series, and want to follow along? Click these links> Consult > Day One > Day Two > Day Three.

Want to donate to this blog?  HELL YEAH!!!!

Waiting

I saw minutes fly by like birds in migration, flapping wings; they soar beyond sight to another hemisphere.

Only minutes forever disappear.

Fifteen of them at a time fly right on by.

Soaring near my face; One leaking shit on my cheek like a delicate opaque tear.

The next one, Number Two, buzzed nearest my ear with a fearful ticking of finality.

The Third flew into my mouth, making me choke for air; daring me to fight for a Minute.

Number Four won’t back away from my hands, as they work to remove Number Three; caught between my throat and a molar.

Minute Five arrived just as alive as the rest.  Sinking claws into my scalp, then pulling away.  Leaving a talon in my skull.

This is bullshit.

My ass is getting kicked by minutes- Limitless and passing

Beyond recognition, each sort of leaving their mark on my skin; my heart and my brain

I’ve lain down enough lines tonight on this subject alone.  I feel like I own it.

Man, you’ve blown it.  I am still waiting on you to show up.

To not, let me down, but I frown at my attempt to be with you.

I should be in my own bed at my own house.

It appears you are out for the night, I should turn out your light.  I should board the bus back to my place.

I have an hour to decide; to make a decision.

I keep listening for your car to keep me glued to these sheets.

I’m defeated and tired.

Minute Six licks my cheek gently where Number One left it’s mark; then swiftly with stinging fury, smacks me so hard, I saw so many stars.

I never saw Number Seven, with a club in one hand, and in the other; a frying pan.

A single, a double, a triple whammy.

Damn, I must be the one tripping now.  I can’t seem to control these minutes and their rising aggression.

I get the sensation they wish they were being used by someone other than me.

They’ve declared anarchy on my sensibilities; meanwhile I wait for you to pull me though this lonely game.

It’s so much better with you here; to smack Minute Eight in the ass when he passes gas in your nose and mine.

It would be fine to have a partner in crime at this particular time.

Especially when Number Nine pulls his shit and tries to poke you in the eyes.  I would grab him from behind because I like your peepers; it’s too bad that I just lost mine when Number Nine got me with out any back.

Alone I still sit, thinking you must not want to be with me, a past regression into negative emotion.

Whoa, that must have been the influence of Number Ten; him and his rotten fortune cookie.

Look at me and Minute Eleven; Number Sevens’ twin… Again I get knocked silly, floating with stars.

Should I go back to the scummy bar for an ale before I hit the bus.

I’ve traveled enough for one night.  I have been let down  enough for three eves in just the matter of hours.

Mean while, Minute Twelve hid on the shelf, until I looked away in recovery.

I didn’t see him throw those books at my noggin; You’re usually blocking those too.

Thirteen beams with joy at adding to this display , by air raiding me with water balloons and foul language.

Fourteen pelts rotten apple cores, vying for my attention.

Boy, I’ve learned nothing but how to block these punches, and it’s hard when they come from every side.

Hence, Number Fifteen, sixteen times over, barks and bites like a Doberman Pincher.

Twelve Midnight and thirty minutes…

A half hour to catch the late bus, time to switch gears and quietly leave, each Minute a failed attempt at following me.

Lost minutes are no consolation for you holding me.

The Observational Adventure

Remember the great writers of the most recently retired generation. The Kerouac and Thompson era. Those journalist trippers taking to the road, ( and not always the high one) making a story as they went along. The intricate weavers of an American subculture. Remnants of their lives describe eternal youth and the adventure of virility few in this day and age can experience without some hinderance. Even those books were riddled with hurdles and nay-sayers, but these writers weren’t necessarily writing with the mindset of being the voice of their generation. Instead, these creative minds were merely taking time to observe the human condition from a new perspective; brilliantly commenting on the social climate. They are the record keepers, the traveling linage of pioneers ready for change and personal breakthrough.

The karmic struggle of a writer, is to conveying a worthwhile message. Anyone can write, but few can write well enough to captivate audiences for years to come. Those literary artists stepped beyond the front stoop and took a bounding leap into the unknown. These are the characters found to be the most inspirational.

Who will be the next great writer of my generation? Who will take the open road exposing eyes to things unseen, and yet there all along. Which one will stand up with vigor and enthusiasm for the new paradigm, a master of words and action? Why will masses follow along the journey, what will make it profound and worth recommending to a friend? What is it, as a growing society, that we still need to learn and assimilate? Who is worthy of such a task? Could it be a woman?

Few know author, Joyce Johnson. She wrote the memoir “Minor Characters,” a journey of her evolution as a writer and her love affair with Jack Kerouac. Joyce, was indeed, a minor character in the underground life of some of the most recognized writers of that time. She was amoungst one of the few women allowed into the inner sanctum of those well known beatniks, Burroughs and Ginsburg. Her accounts of the time she spent learning, loving, and living in the shadows is poinant and captivating. “Minor Characters,” brings to mind the question as to how; with her writing skills, keen observation, and warrior spirit, she remained overlooked as a complimentary commentary on the day and age. Perhaps we have been so caught up in the taboo stories of fierce and flagrant men; as is common in American culture, that those softer voices have been drowned out. Just as the admired men of her time were openly defiant to the social norm, tagging along the ranks was Joyce. In a time when women were expected to get married, stay home and have babies, Joyce was expanding her mind and sexuality. Her involvement with Kerouac never turned into marriage, and though he was 12 years her senior, he highly respected her as a writer and confidant. Still, few recognize her impact on Kerouac’s musings… truely a minor character.

I took the leap into the unknown some 10 years ago now. I have traveled the open road, and talked with strangers. I have stayed in the homes of people met merely hours ago, only because it seemed like a good idea at the time. I have observed the bizarre and beautiful array of life bleeding behind closed doors. Empathy is more prevalent in my life due to scenes so heart-wrenching and real, no script could do them justice. Trickles of poetry and sketch have formed from the surreal nature of observational participation. What is it I am destined to convey?

I have been treated with love and disgust, invaded and ignored. The path has been dirty but rewarding. Perhaps the only rewards are stories. Maybe it is the ability to slip into the personal lives of others. To walk, invited into all the swells of struggle that humans desire to share, and yet feel too ashamed or isolated by, to know how to. I have been there in one way or another. Crying with strangers, sleeping with soul mates, laughing at nature, embracing the sunset. The fabric of our lives is a quilt work of words and experience, a colorful co-creation in a constant state of evolution. Each of us, without knowing, are active in our participation. The blessings of momentary meetings, the rush of brilliance shown through Truth. You may not know it, and you may never realize the silent impact you can have on a writer. I could write poems about a certain strangers’ smile. Those things may never be published, the muse may never know they were influential… and yet, words however private spill forth like a fountain of expression. A writer’s “full release.” Just as life force spills forth from every man until his death, words worth writing fill the page of eager hands. Some times in life are less inspirational than others, and still it is only a sign that the wellspring is in the process of change and revitalization.

I am on the adventure, you are each adding to the journey, the goal is unseen. The struggle is to learn how to really LIVE a life of expression and integrity. Each interaction bring to light a new concept or facet of totality and unity within our humanity. May the words of sages and wise women be a spark into the flame of greater creativity in each mortal soul. Eagerly we await a greater acceptance of our bond as humans, our Universal Minds and Hearts. Each time you read words of inspiration, contemplation, revelation and resonance, heed the message, though mass produced, it was written specifically for you at that time. There is no time in Truth, and Truth is timeless. May your soul recognize your journey no matter what time it is.

Invisible Immaculant

If I can just sort of spiritually brag for a minute… my life has been filled with amazing, beautiful, poetic, and ironically humorous synchronistic guide posts.

Yours probably has been too, but maybe you have been too busy questioning the latest mind numbing activities to allow your brain to make those connections… I don’t know. I am not you.

I can only say that I have observed that effect on humanity, and it has kept a large portion of people in a saddened arrested development which really can be hard to reverse once it has reached it’s later stages.

I am going to go out on a limb here and say that I have noticed these things occur with frequency and consistency through out my life. I do not say this to seem better than anyone else, but rather to call the attention of those who may feel that is my “tone,” to hear me out and understand why you are so quick to cast judgment on me, if you are.

If you deny yourself the potential of this reality by making excuses for why you have not experienced it and why it can not exist, maybe you should look at that first.

The only thing which limits your potential is yourself, and by denying the potential existence of something beyond your scope, limits you directly from consciously and voluntarily participating in a process of self expansion from many levels.

You can take that in any form large or small, super size or miniscule, and realize this Truth by how hard it may cut you on the inside.

Now, noticed I said ” consciously and voluntarily participating” , there is a reason for this.

These guideposts, I have had in my life, have told me a few things.

They are doing the same for you, but maybe you are not paying attention and listening… they come in various forms.

Main themes for me are preparation for the emotional output of others whether positive or negative. This has led to my self preservation as well as knowing if I am on the “right” or “wrong” path.

People who constantly fall on hard times in their life often times are not seeing the signs given to them, in their own personal code. Things like blame; hate, fear, anger and excuses get in the way, of what otherwise could be a really rad physical experience.

Those roadblocks of emotion can bog us down, and with prolonged exposure they fog our vision toward all the things which are pointing us in our own personal golden direction.

I don’t want to give you some fluffy “BE HAPPY ALL THE TIME” bull shit. It isn’t like that… It is far more real and gritty… and let’s face it; pretty obvious if you give the idea any credit.

I figure, I like to know what’s going on, and I like to have info and facts… well why turn down an extra tool which pretty much makes life less stressful? And the only proof I need is in my own personal experience and the positive outcomes.

Let us also face the fact that potentials are endless… what if you married someone else, what if you dropped out of high school… what if you had that baby, what if?

I almost feel like self sedation is just a way of self prevention. It doesn’t seem to hurt the ability of a person, to exacerbate their already arrested developments.

I use to wonder about each untainted individuals “golden path”… the one they choose that is best of all the options, the path they were on before they end up here…the people they want to meet… how they want to influence the world… and then further down the plan they add the exclusions of a “choose your own adventure.” So a person can have their Spiritual Ideal, but there are a lot of paths and potentials in this world with some free will… so who will we actually choose to meet out of all those Souls we know? And is this why so many people feel separate from their “people,” or why so many feel incongruous from themselves as they have mindlessly milled about in a sedated state?

Where would my golden path have taken me… had things been slightly different? I don’t really care but for the sake of curiosity; and yet I feel so perfect in how it has all played out thus far. I have seen purpose in all of it, and the connections for me are undeniable.

I wrote this story, no doubt. I know all the lines like the back of my hand… and when I see things in my reality, or I hear things in my heart and mind I go with it… and it has not failed.

I am not wealthy in money because I choose not to be… but I never starve, I always have shelter, and IT IS NOT A STRUGGLE to acquire those simple things honestly!

It’s divine like Mary Poppins, when the winds change, it shows me where to go.

And I am not ashamed of how I live my life, because people trust me with the care of their most precious earthly things…animals, children, homes, gardens… and since I have few precious earthly things, I can fully love and give to that which is entrusted with me… and no one has had a large complaint yet.

I am missed when I leave, and life changes for everyone with new light in their eyes, knowing now new things.

I value life and personality. I enjoy silence and laughter in equal part. When I am alone, I am very happy and very content… because I feel you all so strongly, that at times it is overwhelming.

It may always seem I am writing about me… to me… but mostly, it is for you. It is the words you have not yet found and put together like the puzzle pieces of experience which is the blessed benefit of living. It may be the context which makes you stumble at the ability to comprehensively explain your own similar circumstance.

I can’t write a book because the story is not finished yet… and this is why we have the Akashic Record and it’s keepers.

I can’t perform a symphony alone. And luckily I don’t have to… It’s like we have all had the sheet music and we have been performing alone at home mostly. A few practices here and there… to get accustomed to our parts… But now it is feeling like opening night… and everything is aligned in the most brilliant way.

We have been practicing a piece of music which has never been performed publicly before to the scale in which it is about to be performed.

It is curtain call.

Submit to Abandonment

portalTake a moment to really meditate on the word “submission.”

What kind of feelings does it convey for you? Can you conjure the words?

Does it leave you feeling some what deflated, and limp?  Weak or powerless?

Maybe it feels productive some how…earned?  A relief.

How about the word “abandon”?

Is the feeling you get from this word visceral?  Deep and wide, like some sort of void?

Or perhaps it makes you feel free?  Without attachment and strings?

Words, words, words.

Perceptions, definitions, placation, sublimation, choices in participation… a positive and negative to every situation…silly souls sitting in stagnation.

Ok, words.  Powerful things.  Creatures with a life of their own, they are; these, words.

Triggers, even… or some may say.  We know through Gnosis words are magic, and organic, and mystic upside down simplistic ways of toying with physical manifestation.

I am doing it now… though through no specific attempt of my own.   This is just something that happens when I step bare foot into the flow that is already occurring.  Tonight, the water is a temperature which sets well with my blood.

In early 2003, I had moved home to “regroup”.  In my spare time I was participating in self led yoga.  I received an unexpected and green Christmas greeting from a friend on the West Coast.

I found it all so inspiring, and the weather so conducive, that despite the 30 degree temperature, I found a cozy spot of intense sun and 90 degree reflection on the deck and  in that Vitamin D bliss orb, I embarked on a transition in my artistic workings.

A pose came to mind.  The simplest pose there is… Childs Pose.  And that pose to me was Submission…. and Abandonment.

Strangely enough, it’s rich quality had absolutely nothing to do with anything negative.

In yoga, Child’s pose is usually a resting spot between inversions or as a way to end a sequence of moves.  When you examine how the body is positioned, knees tucked into the chest, forehead on the floor… arms extended out; it appears a drastic bow.  As the Muslims do when they pray… or as a child looks, asleep.  As though they fell asleep suddenly, submitting to their own exhaustion.

Literally, we think about submission… and to many, it means “giving up.”

Wikipedia says “Submission is the acknowledgement of the legitimacy of the power of one’s superior or superiors.”

This brings up the questions..Hmmm who is MY Superior?  Why would I submit to anything less?  Why does ‘submission’ and ‘submit’ feel like dirty words?  Why am I compelled to “feel submission” from a Higher Stand point? (More about this in a minute…)

Abandon…

How many people feel positive about THAT word?  I mean, honestly I think we could create a whole subculture of people who could associate to the best and worst attributes that would be connected to the the “Abandonment Tribe.”

Of all the situations that have fallen through, for the millions of hopeful souls out there… or for all the parents who died before their child’s ideal prime, only to be blamed in the big cosmic game, that is… Abandon (ment) has received quite a nasty rap… and yet it has SO MANY definitions…

People rarely take time to think and talk about all the things; people, and ideas that they have chosen to abandon over time, in order to grow and clear room for the new.  People have take sick pleasure in the seeming abuse of “being abandoned.”

It is an easy route to sympathy.  It is a scapegoat meant only for rainy day amusement.

Abandonment is SO BIG.  And WAY LESS nasty that we have given it credit for.

To loose all abandon; is to let go totally.  No longer is there consequence or forethought.  There is only the action which exists in the moment.

Many people find that to be dangerous and scary.   Abandonment has earned it’s bad rap through the perception of personal experience mixed equal parts, Fear God Complex.

Think about all the best parts of not giving a fuck what others think.  To abandon worry, or care… many find this irresponsible  and once they have partaken in it, find themselves in a retaliation cycle of guilt.

A person can walk with abandon and submission with out walking at all in negativity…

To walk and not care, to feel bliss and blessed by being regardless?

Yep, it’s pretty easy to do.  In fact your heart already knows how to…  You live and let live… You speak your mind when it feels right, You love despite doubt.  You breathe deep and enjoy the air in your lungs.  You do what is best for your Higher Self… you say “No” when your heart tells you… You cry at the beauty of nature with no shame… You see something GREATER in YOURSELF and in OTHERS… and YOU ARE SICK OF DENYING or pushing it to the wayside.

Submission and Abandon… well they are like two adopted sisters from the ghetto, living with a “good Christian family.”   The bad name branded through perception as a double edged sword.  But really they try just as hard with their lessons, and they show up when you don’t expect them to… and they show, they are not mutually exclusive when it comes to duality…

So Abandon all reason and doubt… Submit to Love, light and Laughter.

Transform the norm to Extraordinary!Image