Time for a Major Change

I’m sure a lot of you have seen me posting about my fitness over the last eight plus years. But this last year, I have hardly had time to workout and eat the way I wanted. I really only had the energy to focus on my Crossfit coaching each week.

Life gets so crazy sometimes, and working out and eating well moves down on our priority list. I have to be honest, 2016-2017 kicked my butt. It was the craziest, most stressful year of my life. I have been such a mess, I ignored important people and priorities for almost an entire year. My world has been upside down.

During this time, I yo-yo dieted. Ate out way too much. Stress ate. Tried this-or-that weight loss method for 7 days, 21 days… or even for 3 hours. (You read that right) … Even though I had the knowledge, I was wrecking my chances for fitness success.

Thanks to the grace of God, I am getting my life in order. I am eliminating unhealthy patterns and replaced them with the correct ones. God shined a light on some dark spots… and I am cleaning those areas up and mending some fences.

I am living with new priorities. God. Me. Family. Career.

Perhaps surprising to some people, “me” comes after “God?” That’s right, me. I don’t think this is because I am selfish or ego-centric. It’s because I can’t take care of anyone else unless I take care of myself. If you fly much, you have probably heard the flight attendant say, “In case of an emergency … put the oxygen mask on yourself first before attempting to help others.” I have to attend to myself first in order to help others. This includes time in the Word. Exercise. Sleep. And Nutrition. I have a strong desire and have been built to serve others… and I can’t do that while I am broken.

My excuses are OVER. I am ready to do this RIGHT!!!

When I look back at what worked for me over the years… I keep coming back to a holistic strategy that I’ve taught for years.

* Dense Superfood Nutrients
* Simple Clean Eating
* Strategic workouts that get real results
* Peer Support to stick with it (especially on days we don’t feel like it)

So, effective August 7th, I will be returning to a meal replacement and cleaner eating. I KNOW this works for me and my clients.

Time for Meal Replacement

I also will strategically insert running, high impact exercises, and strength training back into my weekly workouts.

If you want to quit making YOUR excuses, I’d love to help you! I will be setting up an free online health and fitness group to help keep us accountable and share some of my meal plans for the rest of the month of August! I did a similar plan and lost up to 10 pounds and gained momentum for my fitness journey… more importantly, I felt amazing.

So, to hold myself accountable and help and inspire others around me, I would love to have you in this group to help each other kick-start our goals. Message me or like or comment below if this is something you think you might be interested in! We all start somewhere.

Let’s call this group “No More Excuses – Kick Start

Mandy Turner

A “Transitional” Year

As I look back on this past year….I realize how much I have changed as an individual.  It was a very different year for me. A year of a lot of change in my life…not to mention turning 40!!

If you know anything about me, you would know I am a very much goal oriented person. I am driven. Hard working. Super dedicated.  And STUBBORN!! LOL! You might also know that I make New Year’s Resolutions (aka Goals) every year.  Since as long as I could remember, every New Year’s I would write these down and then put them in my Bible to review and remind myself throughout the year.  BUT, last year was the first year that I did not do this!  WHY?? Cos I had NO CLUE what to expect out of my year.  I had no real direction.  No real DRIVE for anything in particular….other than crossfitting and some running.

My 2015 year began with me resigning from my 6.5 year position as the Children’s Pastor at my church.  And I was coaching crossfit classes very part-time.  I had no idea what I was going to do next…. I just knew in my heart that it was time for a change.

Because I am the type of person that needs to have SOMETHING IDENTIFIED as a goal so that I can chase it, to not have any goals were a real struggle for about 8 months out of my year.  The only goal I had for the year was to do a CrossFit Competition as a RX athlete.  And that didn’t go as planned either….because I got injured one week before the competition.  **This was an athlete spirit killer for me too!

I felt like much of my year I was lost.

–I was a new crossfit coach…working hard to gather as much knowledge as possible to help my athletes.  And I was also getting to know my coaching peers…and slowly making new friends with those I worked with.

–I was a busy wife and mom—but a mom of teenagers who didn’t need me the way they used to.  It’s a big change to have kids who are somewhat independent….that need me and my attention is a totally different way than they did in the earlier years.  Now they are little adults.  I have gone from Mommy to Mom.

–I was a Christian..struggling to open my Bible and having a hard time connecting with God in my prayer life. (I truly believe this was a huge adjustment since I had just left full time ministry and struggled to know how to study without an audience in mind).

–And as an athlete….It was a humbling year.  I had spent much of my year injured. (People warned me this would happen at 40years old-haha).  I thought my injury would be just a two-three week deal but it ended up being a 4 month ordeal.  And that was just ONE injury.

I vividly remember late in the summer having a complete breakdown at Crossfit.  I was hoping to PR (aka Persona Record) on my clean lift (cos I hadn’t PRed in months…like A LOT of months) and I was due.  That day I barely hit my previous PR.  I was devastated and just threw my barbell down and took off running….while everyone else did the WOD (workout).  Yes, it was a grown woman tantrum!!!  

As I was running, I remembered that running hurt, too.  And right then and there I ran (wobbly) and cried my eyes out…wondering why God was taking everything away from me that made me ME…the things that I loved or felt like I was good at.  I couldn’t run.  I couldn’t lift heavy.  My workouts sucked.  I just ran and snot cried! I started doubting my coaching ability. I knew I was struggling spiritually but that snot run I actually felt like He was listening to me.

 

SOMETHING HAPPENED soon after that tantrum!  All of a sudden I was able to feel freedom of being okay with not having a direction.  It was like I suddenly understood I was in a “transitional stage”.  I was realizing I was refinding myself….. or I think a better term would be “redefining myself”!  And suddenly I was content to be open to any change that may come my way.

I have finished off my 2015 year feeling more confident and actually excited about this new transitional time in my life.  I am enjoying every minute of redefining who I am…..in God, as an individual, as wife, as parent, as a coach, and as a friend.

And right now I am in a good place……a very, very good place!

–And I will be making goals again this year!!! Stay tuned!  Welcoming 2016! Can’t wait to                                           see what it has in store for me!!

 

 

My Barbell Relationship

I used to have a “love” for running on a daily basis. More and more miles each day. More and more goals being met. Times achieved. Distances achieved. And loving the feeling of the “runner’s high”.  And to be totally honest, I loved that it was taking weight off of me pretty quickly too.

That was over two years ago…. before I was introduced to barbells and weights.

When I was first introduced to the barbell it was soon after a few months of doing kettlebell crossfit like classes (beginner crossfit so to say). At the time I was doing these classes, I didn’t realize it would advance me to barbell classes later on. Another words, I was clueless. I basically thought I was attending a boot camp style class cos that’s kind of what it felt like to a certain degree. Again, clueless.

I was quickly advancing in these classes, so my coach asked me to come try a barbell class. I reluctantly decline cos I didn’t want to drive to a barbell class or pay the extra fee. But a few weeks later I did try a barbell class.

I remember my first barbell class well. It was very intimidating as I went all by myself. I walked in and the sound of loud music and barbells crashing to the floor all around me. I remember immediately finding the bathroom to go for a nervous pee and for a quick prayer (this part is no lie either, I remember it that well). One class was finishing up a WOD while other people were rolling on foam rollers waiting for their own class to start. ***I didn’t even know what a foam roller was for, so that seemed awkward too. HA!

I am pretty sure that night we were working on snatches (which is one of the harder lifts). I was awkward. I required a lot of the coach’s attention (which I don’t think he was crazy about) and I left thinking…..NEVER AGAIN! —-and just for the record, I am still awkward with those snatches! LOL

But for some reason I came back. Something about having that barbell in my hands was empowering, frightening, and challenging. I LIKED THAT!!! It was soo much different than running, for sure.

This time I attended a morning class. I walked in and saw familiar faces….one being my previous coach who was working out and another that was a church friend. Our coach was a young, young girl. That day we were doing strict press maxes. I wasn’t supposed to be maxing out yet, but they allowed me to since they were closely monitoring me. That day, my second day of cross fitting, I strict pressed 100#.  I had no idea that that was pretty good. But I do remember my coaches and peers being impressed with me and telling me I was strong. Suddenly I felt intrigued and empowered by what I could possibly do with the barbell.  I hadn’t ever been considered strong either!?!?!

There was something about that barbell that was empowering….and a mystery, and a little rebellious too.

In the months to come, I learned so many new things about the barbell. I had no idea that you could do so many movements with one piece of equipment and some of them are very complex movements. From presses, to cleans, to snatches, to squats, to deadlifts…..this list can go on and on.

mandycf

But fast forward to NOW…the present time. I have come to have a love-hate relationship with the barbell. I absolutely LOVE IT and can be quite good at some of it, but I am absolutely terrible at a lot of it, too!!  HA!   Each day brings on a different emotion with that barbell. Some days I feel strong, like I am making huge progress. Other days I leave feeling like a defeated crossfit joke. But there is never a time I leave and don’t come back….. because I LOVE throwing around the big weights. And let’s be real, those big weight like to throw me around too. ****That’s the point of it though.  It’s like life.  There are a lot of days we are good at life….we help others, we work hard, we study hard, we take care of our responsibilities, etc…. But there are many days in our life that just plain kick us in the bootie! Life is hard. You can feel defeated, tired, and want to quit…. BUT YOU DON’T.  You continue to live life the best way you can.

This sport is so mental. It is so challenging. And it kicks my butt time and time again. But each day…. I find myself getting better, getting stronger, and becoming a better person, athlete, and coach because of it. And recently I am learning that it’s a growth that is beyond the physical growth…. but very much mental and even spiritual.
crossfitself

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

livebetterplayharder

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…..my 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!!!

 

Telephone Pole Goals

It’s late January here in Texas and the weather the last couple of days feels like May.  It’s absolutely beautiful outside with plenty of sunshine.  It’s almost like a good tease to the new season that lies ahead! :-).  I don’t like to miss a good run on a pretty day.  So needless to say, I have been getting some mileage in this past week. LOVE IT!

Yesterday, as I was running, I realized something I do every time I run.  And I have been doing this since I began running over a decade ago.  I have “telephone pole goals“.  See, I live in a small town.  I actually live IN the small town, but am one block away from a road that leads me out to the “back roads” or “country roads”.  These roads have open pastures of land.  I am able to see horses, cows, creeks, hills, etc…  These roads are lined with telephone poles, too.

I am very much a goal oriented person.  I like to set small goals that lead to bigger goals….and I like to accomplish my goals, too.  Feeling successful is empowering.  In the beginning stages of my running, I started out at the track.  My first days of attempting running (after being a walker) I would run the straight-a-ways and walk the curves of the track.  This eventually moved to run half the track, walk half the track, and then walk/run laps at at time.  I quickly progressed to running 1 to 2 miles at the track at a time….but it became boring going in circles….so I began to take on the “back roads” for something different.

polegoals

Now–back to why I mentioned telephone poles earlier… These telephone poles have been a big key to my running success.  These back roads are longer and more difficult terrain to exercise on.  It isn’t nearly the same as running on the track.  The roads can be uneven, there are hills to conquer, there are random cracks in the pavements you have to dodge, and of course traffic, and the occasional friendly dog that becomes your running buddy for a couple of miles.  HA!  Because these roads were lined with telephone poles, I began playing mind games with myself by setting goals to run to a certain telephone pole and then walk to another.  As I progressed in my endurance, I would extend my telephone pole goals to perhaps run to the 4th telephone pole and then walk to the next, run 4 more telephone poles, walk another, so on.  Even as a marathon runner,  I still had telephone pole goals; run to the “subdivision entrance” telephone pole, walk to the next, etc.

Yesterday it dawned on me that I am still subconsciously using these telephone poles to push me and make me go a little further.   What a great tool to have!

This is something YOU can do to.  It doesn’t have to be telephone poles either.  It can be streets, blocks, or houses if you live in a neighborhood.  It can be street lights in the city.  You can even do this with walking if your not ready to run yet.  Maybe speed walk a block, and then casually walk the next, and so on.  There is no right or wrong way to this.  The main thing is to get out in this beautiful weather and move! Set yourself these goals! And make yourself feel successful.

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