The Mind Game Never Ends

This time last year I was in a great place as far as my fitness was concerned….and I looked fit (lean and not “fluffy”).  However, the months after last Spring began another downward spiral.  Even though I had put the time in the gym….got stronger, faster, and became a better crossfit athlete, my diet slowly dwindled back to the “old normal”.  The “old normal” was eating right all week long but totally blowing it on the weekends.  Not only was I sabotaging myself with this terrible routine, but I also let my thyroid get back out of wack, which also meant the other hormones in my body were going out of wack, too.

This past January, I knew what I needed to do…which was to regulate my body again.  Clean the gut out.  To stay consistent on my thyroid meds. Put in the hard work. AND GET RID OF THE SUGAR.  I did the 21 Day Sugar Detox and with much success, I completed it.  I lost 9.5# in 21 days.  I felt better than ever. The hormones were regulated again.  The cravings for bad food were gone.    My workouts were strong with good intensity. My pants were fitting better. The “swollen” look was going away.  I could see my muscle definition coming back.

I am now approaching a full month of clean eating and sticking to a good plan that is working for me.  I am down 11#. I feel strong. And confident again.  People are seeing the changes.  And you know when someone can tell you’re putting in the work….it makes you proud!!! So you keep at it!!!

THEN—this “mind game” begins….

So let me tell you about this roller coaster week of mine that I am having with my mind and emotions….

Monday—I am killing my workouts. I feel strong. I have a lot of energy and focus.  It was a great day…. I actually over did it on Monday; Two partner WODS. Lots of muscle up attempts. With lifting and running at home later.

Tuesday- I wake up and am soo sore.  But I get in a great hard WOD…one that kind of left me a little shaky.  **This doesn’t happen often to me, but I knew it was because my body was still recovering from Monday.

Wednesday— I decided to REST but had several classes to coach.  I began a private session with a new client of mine.  The client is a beginner to CrossFit and working out, as she is 6 weeks postpartum.  I spent 1.5 hours with her in training and getting measurements and “before” pictures done.  She was wearing baggy clothes so to get a good “before” picture, I asked her to raise her shirt to reveal only her mid-section.  I demonstrated this for her so she could mimic what I was doing.

In that brief moment, this all takes place in my head as I raise my shirt to show my stomach area:  “OH GOSH—This is my bad area. I hope she doesn’t think that’s a cross fitter’s abs?”  ***The insecurity of letting some stranger see my very worst feature were quickly frightful…..  She even looks at me with a surprised looked…and I immediately want to undo what I just did! But she totally surprises me by saying “Oh my gosh! You’re so cut! You’re abs are awesome!”—– In my little head I wanted to hug the girl.  I also wanted to laugh at her for even thinking I was remotely cut….cos I am NOT cut!!! I have so far to go to be what I and many fitness professionals would call “cut”.

But then in a few shorts seconds after that I was simply reminded that I need to be proud of where I am.  I often forget that I have done some hard work.  I have made some huge improvements.  And yes, I do have some definition in my abs now due to my handwork and commitment.  This girl saw this for a brief moment and she wanted to be where I was.  And I forgot I used to be that girl, starting all over again at ground zero.  We sometimes get so caught up in trying to achieve the “next level” that we forget to enjoy the journey and milestones along the way.  This is why we often fail….because we are never satisfied or content where we are at. Then we slowly go back to the “old normal” which takes us back to starting all over again.  I know this to be a true as I can identify this behavior in myself.  It can be sabotaging our long term goals.  But even though I am not near close to the fitness goals I have for myself….and I am so much closer now than I ever was. I am going to choose to enjoy the journey! And keep kicking butt along the way :-).




Live Better. Play Harder.

Live Better. Play Harder.  This is my “tag line title” of my website/blog.  It has taken me some time to come up with this “tag line” but now that I have it, I can’t be more pleased.  I truly believe that this tag line explains what my goal is for myself but also for my clients, as well!!! #WIN #WIN


A few months ago, my husband asked me to come up with a “tag line” for my new website.  I knew at that time I wanted something that involved the word PLAY.  I am few months away from turning FORTY, but I still “playing” as if I am a kid or teen athlete.  In matter of fact…. I may play harder now than I did in the “good ole days”.  I think that why I absolutely love what I am doing now.  It’s not only CrossFit alone that has me playing (even though I truly believe CrossFit has physically and mentally prepped me and given me the courage to play more), but also in so many other aspects in my life.  Like I said, I am almost 40 years old BUT I am having the best time of my life playing!!! Whether it’s tree bashing at crazy speeds with my brother snow skiing down a mountain….Or swimming way out too far into a lake (just cos I can). Or going for a random 17 mile run around Washington DC for some sight seeing…. Or simply playing basketball in the front yard with my kids.  These are the things I LOVE doing! They give me great joy and make me love living life.  I feel most alive when I am at “play”.

But here is the truth…. I can’t play hard if I am not properly taking care of myself.  I must FUEL properly (diet wise).  I must exercise (strength, endurance, stamina, etc). I must properly rest. I must take certain supplements that my body needs extra of.  I must train my mind—become wiser.  I must train my soul–mature in my relationship with God.  I must love… family, friends, and others. All these things are a part of what I mean when I think of LIVE BETTER.  Everyday, every week, every year…. I want to be better in all these aspects of my life that are greatly important to me.

So when you see my hashtags now….. #livebetter #playharder, you will now know what I am referring too!!!


Train Your Weakness *Rope Style*

One perk of being a CrossFit coach means I have the ability to look ahead into our programming to see what workouts are planned for the week.  Our athletes only know day by day.  I saw this workout posted on Sunday and immediately knew I was going to opt to do the scaled version.  Scaled in crossfit means you might sub out an advanced movement for a less advanced movement, or you may scale the amount of reps or time, etc.  Another words, it’s a way to modify the workout to fit your own abilities or needs.

The WOD (workout of the day) for today was:

Run a 800 meters

15reps-12reps-9reps-6reps-3reps of Pistols (which are one legged squats).  This could be scaled to goblet squats (which means holding the KB to do a squat)

5reps, 4 reps, 3reps, 2reps, 1 rep of rope climbing.  This could be scaled to doing 15-12-9-6-3 ring rows.

Then 100 double-unders (cycling two jumps when jump roping at a time). This could be scaled by doing 200 single jump ropes.

***The way this workout function is you run and then you alternate between doing the pistols and rope climbs reps before doing the double-unders.  Another words, you run, then do 15 pistols, then 5 rope climbs, 12 pistols, 4 rope climbs, etc….. then you finished the workout with your 100 double-unders.



Here’s the deal with rope climbs.  They are HARD! Especially after you do one or two of them.  Or at least they are for me! One reason they are hard for me is because I need to learn a better, more efficient technique that allows me to use more legs than arms.  Rope climbs need to be more leg work, than arm work.  But this is where I struggle.  I use all arm strength.  Which is why I have never done more than two full rope climbs at a time because it simply wears my arms out!

So–I saw this workout and immediately knew there was NO WAY I could do 5 rope climbs back to back…let alone, 4 more back to back later, then 3, 2, 1.  NO WAY! I have only done two back to back before.

Of course, I get there and my coach says, “Nope, your doing them.  Just take breaks in between each climb”.  I was super reluctant.  I had my mind set on ring rows (and I am sore from yesterday’s handstand pushups—–EXCUSES- HA).  I even was ok with doing one or two rope climbs at a time and then finishing off my set with doing ring rows.  But not according to my coach.  She wanted me doing them!

I gave it my very best. To my surprise, I did my first five fairly well.  This was already a win in my book. I was stragetic. I had made sure to take breaks in between each climb.  But let me tell you, the set of 4 was soo hard! I needed more than just a break.  I needed full on coaching to get me on that rope.  Then set 3—well, it became very mental!! VERY MENTAL.  My arms were on fire (especially my forearms).  I even made it half way up a couple of times and had to come down for more break time.  I got the set of 3 done.  It was ugly! It was exhausting! It took all I had.  My arms were so spent after doing 5 in a row, 4 in a row, and 3 in a row.  As bad as I wanted to continue rope climbs 2 and 1…. I knew with my arms feeling so tight and looking a little swollen, that it wasn’t worth getting injured over.

So—-today I trained one of my weakness!  I did not complete this workout with all rope climbs.  But I am by no means feeling defeated.  I feel inspired to work on this even more.  I am very proud at the fact that I did 12 out of 15 required rope climbs—when I have never done more than 2 at time before. I will now learn a better way to use less arms and learn to use more legs (or get a better foot wrap around the rope).  But today, I didn’t just train my weakness of rope climbing, but I also trained my mind.  I didn’t want to try this workout and I did.  I wanted to walk away several times because it was hard, but I kept coming back to the rope to try again.  I quit a couple of times mid-climb because it was getting hard to hold on.  But I kept coming back to the rope again to finish that set.  My last two rope climbs were as much mental as they were physical.  It was hard to hold on to that rope when my arms were DONE, but I would hold on, take a deep breath and do all I could do regrip the rope with my feet.  I finally got up those last two ropes without quit. But I finished that set—however, I did not complete the last two rounds of 2 and 1 climbs (I subbed them for ring rows).  But that’s only because I felt like my body had actually hit it’s limits.

I trained my weakness today! :-).  I became a better athlete today, as well!


Home Workouts (No Equipment Needed)

I often get asked for home or traveling WODs. Below I am posting several WODs that you can do at home or when traveling.  These WODs do not require equipment. However, you could easily add the kettle bell or dumbbell for an added challenge.



-10-9-8-7-6-5-4-3-2-1 of burpees and sit-ups.
-20 walking lunges, 10 push-ups for 6 rounds.
-10 sit ups and 10 burpees for 10 rounds.
-30 Double Unders (or 100 singles) , 20 air squats for 4 rounds.
-50 sit-ups, 40 Double Unders for 3 rounds.
-100 air squats for time. Rest 1 min. 100 sit ups for time. Rest 2 min. 50 Pushups.
-15-14-13-12-11-10-9-8-7-6-5-4-3-2-1 reps of burpees and sit ups.
-30 second handstand to 30 second bottom of the squat hold for 10 rounds.
-100 burpees for time.
-Handstand practice, 25 tries at free handstands, then a 1 mile run.
-Run 400 meters, 50 air squats for 4 rounds.
-50 sit-ups, 400 meter run/sprint/walk for 3 rounds.
-Run 1 mile for time. Rest 7 min. Run 1 mile for time.
-20 min Every Minute on the Minute of 10 Burpees.
-15 min As Many Rounds As Possible of 5 Pushups, 10 Air Squats, 15 Situps.
-21-15-9 Reps of Burpees, Jumping Air Squats, Pushups.


No Excuses! :-).

Crossfit Level One Trainer

I am a Level 1 Certified Crossfit Instructor for Solus Crossfit in Sherman, Whitesboro, and Gunter, Texas. I would love to have you attend one of my classes each week.

I have always been active and competitive since as early as I can remember.  I was actively involved in basketball, track/crosscountry, and power tumbling as a high school athlete.  Beyond HS I played college basketball and graduated college as a Kinesiology major.  As an adult athlete, I had coached HS basketball, track and cross country and completed several endurance races (marathons and triathlons).  Crossfit became my new passion just less than 2 years ago when I learned that I could combine all the different aspects of the sports I love into one sport of Crossfit.  I just recently completed my internship at Solus and am a CL-1 Trainer.

Crossfit trainers soluscrossfit solus Gunter

CrossFit Solus is a certified CrossFit Affiliate, where the coaching, training and programming is centered on the CrossFit philosophy and methodology. That is, our focus is on workouts that are constantly varied, functional movements executed at high intensity and scalable to your fitness level. Constantly varied means every day you’ll tackle a new or different workout. Functional movements are the normal movements your body goes through in life like running, lifting, squatting, shoving and pulling. We want to help you find your intensity while making sure the  workouts you are doing are manageable based on your individual capabilities. Our workouts are designed to prepare you for any of life’s actual physical demands. We understand that those demands range from tasks like unloading groceries, tackling yard work, climbing stairs and chasing a young child; to enhancing performance in a job related task or a competitive sport. That’s why you’ll have workouts that involve throwing and jumping or lifting  and running. That’s also why you won’t find weight machines and sections of elliptical machines and treadmills. What you will see is space to run, jump, squat and lift. The equipment you’ll find are pull-up bars, weighted balls, kettlebells and barbells.

Welcome to

I am excited to launch this new website and begin this new journey of fitness, wellness, and nutrition with you. My family and I are committed to living a healthy lifestyle. After years of “trying” to eat decent and working out when I can, I decided to take the time to learn how to be healthy and committed to a healthy lifestyle. Our family stays active (few video games, little couch time, strategic rest periods) and now I spend my time teaching others how to do the same.

Mandy Turner Family

My kids are now learning how to eat correctly. How to workout correctly, with good form and with a purpose. Follow my site and stay up-to-date as I post weekly content to encourage you as you “pursue your path.”

crossfit kids

You can begin to follow me on Instagram and Facebook.