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New Workout Gear for Week 14!

Fall is in the air!! I always loved going “back to school” as a kid (nerd alert).   As an adult, I’ve used the “back to school” fever to get myself organized and back on top of my goals/resolutions.  Honestly though, this year, (I’m happy to clean my house up a bit) but this challenge has kept me so accountable over the summer that I don’t need to RE-focus on my goals, I have been focused the whole time.  I went to so many BBQ’s and skipped dessert, extra servings, macaroni salad, hamburger buns etc.  I mean I really did the damn thing!  I didn’t use “summer” or “Bbqs” as an excuse.  I have been really dedicated since beginning this challenge.  I finally made a decision to transform and stop getting in my own way.

For so long I was afraid to take a stance and say “I’m not eating that” at family parties because I was afraid people would find me annoying or self-indulgent.  But now I realize that I was letting the FOWOT (fear of what others think) stand in my way for far too long.  Imma be me!  And honestly, no one has given me a hard time about being gluten & dairy free so that was all in my head!

I’m way behind on my workouts for the challenge by about 6!  So this Sunday when I arrived at the gym at 9am and there was no teacher for class I was a little panicked!  I waited a while, but then realized the class was cancelled.  I got home and rounded up my family for an impromptu workout in the playground on my street.  Ran also wanted to get a workout in and I figured at the playground we could do a circuit with my few dumbbells from home and some ingenuity.  I also figured no one would be there since it was the Sunday of labor day weekend at 9:45 in the morning, but we ended up bumping into 2 people we know!  They both complimented us on our workout enthusiasm so early in the morning.  I was determined not to miss a workout so I got creative.  Now I think we might start doing this every weekend and invite some local parents.  There’s nothing better than bringing your kids to your workout and showing them the great example of taking care of yourself.

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Doing some Rows in Cabrini Park

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Daphne looks on at Cabrini

Since Dylan had no school earlier this week, I had to bring him to bootcamp for a class with me (because again, I couldn’t miss a day) so I can work on completing the challenge. He is pretty well behaved there and talks about his “workouts” that he does at karate.  Plus he sees me “doing the damn thing.”  He also likes to see where I’ve been all those nights I said, “I’m going to bootcamp.”  It’s never easy to leave your family at night for an hour to get a workout in, but taking him has helped me show him what I’m doing so he understands why it’s important that I go.

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Dylan does his best “Superman”

I’ve started thinking about what comes next in 2 weeks when this challenge is over. What more can I layer in to make it more transformative?  I’m always looking for ways to push myself out of my comfort zone, because that feeling of personal growth is so intoxicating I’d hate to let it go.

So I’ve decided to do 2 extra cleanse days for the challenge.  I’d originally committed to 16, but now I am re-upping for 18 total.  My workouts are going well, but it’s likely I won’t hit my 48 goal by Sept 21.

Week 14 Results

Weight: 185.6 (-11.4 since start, -4.0 change since last week)

Cleanse days completed this week: 2 (14 total for the challenge)

Workouts: 4 (36 total for the challenge)

Non-Scale Victory:  Today at the gym one of the trainers said I look great!! She said my shoulders and arms have improved.  Arms are smaller and shoulders are more defined.  Plus my body fat percentage went way down!  I was very proud today to get on the scale.

What I want to be acknowledged for this week:  I went through my clothes and pulled out 12 items that no longer fit or are just old and need to be passed on.  In the past, I would have agonized with guilt about getting rid of “perfectly good” clothes even though they don’t suit me anymore.  But I have LET GO of this false attachment and removed some items to make space for the new.

Book I am reading this week: Love Louder, by Preston Smiles

This week’s title inspired by: Imma Be, by Black Eyed Peas

The Advanced Class!

September 7, 2016

Posted by Ran Isner

Tonight I had a conversation with my teacher at Jiu Jitsu about me moving on to the advanced class. It’s been about two months since I started taking classes and I have been very consistent. The first thing the teacher told me is that The teaching staff is certain I can handle that physically and that I am ready. It felt nice to be acknowledged for my hard work but I also recognized that I wasn’t looking for their approval, which is a change for me.

That also means a larger investment money wise. It wasn’t as bad as I thought it was but it’s still an added expense. Between my son, my wife and myself taking various classes, the money adds up. I mean, I could stay right where I am and keep practicing at the basic level or, I can make the investment in myself and go for it. Like almost every human being on this planet, I have a tense relationship with money. I always worry how we are doing with our money and is there anywhere we can cut expenses?

One would consider this a problem and one of my mentors has a saying about problems. “Just outproduce your problems!”.  Simple, right? I used to think it wasn’t that simple and I thought that because of my own shit. You see, in network marketing the way you make money is by making connections with people and providing a solution to their problem and in order to do that one has to:

A. Step out of their comfort zone

B. Stop making it about you!

C. Belief

 

I have an issue with all of those areas.  Stepping out of my comfort zone scares the crap out of me because I have spent years being comfortable with being uncomfortable. News flash! Our comfort zone is anything but comfortable. It’s filled with self doubt, fear and guilt and who the fuck wants that? I have been working on stepping out of that zone and getting comfortable with being confident and successful.

By being afraid of what people would think when I talk to them about what it is I do in network marketing is making it all about me. If I don’t share this amazing gift with people because I am afraid they would think that I am weird and pushy, them I am possibly depriving them of something that they might be craving for and that is selfish.

Now this is the kicker. I believe in the products I have to offer people 100% because i know what they do. My belief in myself? That’s a different story altogether. For the longest time I didn’t think I mattered. I didn’t think that who I am was anything special and that what I said or did had any impact on anybody. The bottom line is that’s a load of bullshit! Every person on this earth matters and the value they have to add to this world is limitless because the universe is limitless.

There is a saying that goes like this ” When the student is ready, the teacher will appear”. By being faced with deciding whether or not to move on to the advanced class I finally understand what it means to outproduce my problems. I don’t want to ever have to deprive my family or myself of things that enhance our experience on this earth because of money. I am fortunate enough that I have an amazing tool in network marketing where the sky is the limit financially if I choose for it to be so and if I put in the work required to achieve my goals. It’s time to peel off those layers, roll up my sleeves and get to work.

How appropriate it is that Jiu Jitsu’s advanced class is creating the clearing for me to move up to the advanced class of my own life?

Week 13

Earlier this week I wrote a post about gratitude.  It’s easy when everything is going well, it becomes a real skill when you can do it when things are really shitty around you.

This week, I went a little off the reservation.  I ate gluten, lots of it.  I don’t know how it happened except I decided it was ok and I just went full force I guess.  The doctor says my gluten sensitivity test came back negative, but that doesn’t mean anything because sometimes the tests do that.  So I guess that little devil on my shoulder started to win out (“Maybe YOUR test was right! Eat as much gluten as you want!”) That little devil is an asshole.

So, okay, I’m in a little funk about it.  Time to focus on what I’m grateful for in order to get outta this.  I’m grateful for my naturopath who is guiding me through my new dairy-free lifestyle, I’m grateful I didn’t gain more than 0.4lbs this week.  I’m grateful for the support of everyone who reads this blog to keep me accountable!

Not every week is a winner, but I’m committed to finishing this challenge strong.  I’ve plotted out the next 15 workouts over the last 3 weeks to make sure I reach my goal.  I’ve also worked out the final four cleanse days.  I’ve even got a surprise for the end of the challenge figured out to really light myself on fire.

Despite this challenging week, I’m really proud of myself for keeping up with challenge.  I’ve done a lot of scary stuff.  (Bathing suit photo anyone?)  No matter what the results of the challenge are on paper, I am really happy with the journey it has taken me on.  Thanks for coming with me!  3 weeks to go!

Week 13 Results

Weight: 189.6 (-7.4 since start, +0.4 change since last week)

Cleanse days completed this week: 0 (12 total for the challenge)

Workouts: 2 (32 total for the challenge)

Non-Scale Victory:  I went on an audition!! I haven’t done many auditions in the recent years because I had zero confidence about it.  But now that I’m feeling good, I went.  Even thought I was kinda unprepared.  I went.  I just got over myself for 15 minutes and sang my song to complete strangers.  And the best part is that it went well and now I get to be part of the Jalopy Chorus.  Very excited to sing again and meet some new people!

What I want to be acknowledged for this week:  I took on a larger role in my assisting responsibilities at Landmark this week and did several recreation calls for participants in the seminar.  I coached some wonderful people I had never met before.  I was really nervous, because WHO AM I? but I just focused on THEM and what can THEY get out of it and I’m happy to say it turned out great for me and them! (Lots of breakthroughs)

Book I am reading this week: You Are a Bad Ass, by Jen Sincero

This week’s title inspired by: Carry That Weight, by The Beatles  – Thanks to the show BeatBugs on Netflix, Dylan has learned a bunch of Beatles songs and this is one of them. He was roaming around the apartment today singing “Boy you’re gonna carry that weight!”  What a great reminder.  You’re gonna carry that weight, Marie – put down the chocolate chips.

Down To The Wire

August 31, 2016

Posted by Ran Isner

It is almost 10:30 at night and I am sitting down to write this blog entry. To be honest with you, if my wife hadn’t said that she still needs to write her blog entry I wouldn’t have remembered to write mine. I have been doing this for 13 weeks now so how could I have almost forgotten to do this today?

For the past two weeks I have been holding myself back, textbook upper limit shit. I am breaking through on so many levels and I still get my shit organized. On top of all of that I am the procrastination king! I completely didn’t do any of my assignments for my nutritional cleansing business team calls because i waited till the last minute and then there was no time left. Now, I’m not going to give you the excuse of “I just didn’t have time” because that is not true! There is always time, it’s a matter of prioritizing. In order for me to move forward I require prioritizing the things that will propel me forward, not the ones that will hold me back. I Still haven’t scheduled my days in a way that I can actually accomplish my goals for the day, the week, the month and the year. Yes! I require to be that specific if I am to go to the next level. Will the world end if I don’t accomplish these things? No it won’t, but I will also stay exactly where I am and that’s unacceptable to me at this stage in my life.

This is the most action I have taken in a ridiculously long time and it feels so good! I am in a space where I can acknowledge that. However, I am also in a place where anything less than that is no longer workable. I know for a fact that I was put on this earth to change people’s lives. I was put here to show them that they could live a life by their own design if they choose to do so. It is through the “Light Yourself On Fire” challenge that I discovered that. Now, I require the skills involved in taking on this kind of leadership and the first step is organization. Leaving things for the last minute is exhausting! The guilt,self deprecation and anxiety involved fucking suck! There is no room for those emotions in my life anymore! I am so done with this!

I am extremely proud of myself for the progress I’ve made and I am also aware of where my opportunities to grow are. We are always growing and evolving and that is a beautiful thing. Life is a beautiful dance, sometimes you lead it and other times it leads you because after all, we are only human, right?

As I am writing these words, I am becoming present to what I am grateful for today. I am grateful for having this forum where I get to share my thoughts and insights. I am grateful for you for taking the time to read it and hopefully resonating with some of it. I am  most grateful for my family as they are my greatest source of inspiration.

No more of this down to the wire shit!

 

 

The title for my video blog post this week was “Birthdays – what does it mean to you? Dread or delight?”

Because, like it could go either way right?

So for maybe the last 10 birthdays, I’ve noticed that I am more dread than delight.  I had all these wild expectations of my loved ones of how I thought they should act on my birthday.  What they SHOULD buy me, give me, do for me, say to me, etc.  And guess what, it almost never was exactly what I wanted.  Then I’d get to be all pissed and indignant all day – which I didn’t want, and yet it kept happening every year.

The worst, was the year my husband gave me the Six Feet Under box set of DVDs. On my birthday.  From my husband.  It was not pretty.  Did I mention that he worked next door to a Best Buy at the time?  What I made this mean was that he… a) didn’t put much thought into my gift… b) didn’t really love me…c) I don’t deserve to be loved.  I think in critical thinking terms that’s…

If p \to  q = no one could ever love me

Way harsh for a birthday, amiright?

This year, I was determined to focus on what’s important and not get stuck in a rut of what my birthday wasn’t.  What helped a little this year is that it fell on a Tuesday, so it was a regular work day.  Plus we had already celebrated over the weekend when  we got away for about 24 hours to PA for a little dinner and gambling.  At the casino, I was very lucky and won at roulette 3 times in a row!! First 23 came out (my bday), then 34 (my age at the time) and finally 29 (my daughter’s bday).  Then my luck ran out!  I expected to win and I did. Thank you Sands for paying for my trip!

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My Family, this is what’s important!

I decided this year I was going to focus on what I’m grateful for on my birthday rather than expecting every action or non-action to mean something.  I know my husband loves me, and even if he gives me a crappy gift (he didn’t), that doesn’t change.  There were a few rough spots during the day of plans getting changed but I took it in stride.  I kept reminding myself to be grateful every time something didn’t go the way I wanted.  And I gotta say, it was a lovely birthday.

Plus I had a few cheat meals, which I enjoyed and now it’s back to the challenge and finishing strong with these last 4 weeks!

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Flowers as a gift from my coach for reaching my Birthday weight loss goal!

Week 12 Results

Weight: 189.2 (-7.8 since start, +1.4 change since last week)

Cleanse days completed this week: 1 (12 total for the challenge)

Workouts: 0 (30 total for the challenge)

Non-Scale Victory:  Going out for my bday in heels and a top that necessitated a strapless bra.  I have always said that I opted for comfort over fashion, but the truth is I was also insecure about wearing more sexy outfits and that I would look fat.  I felt great, and I was a little uncomfortable, but I felt like it was worth it because I was owning my sexy!

What I want to be acknowledged for this week:  Trying some new things this week in my diet to jumpstart things and see if I can keep the momentum going with my weight loss.  Also, for not eating everything on my plate when we were out for several meals over the last few days.  I was able to actually stop eating when I was full, which used to be a struggle for me in the past (because I’d feel guilt or FOMO if I didn’t finish the food I’d ordered).  So over that!

Book I am reading this week: You Are a Bad Ass, by Jen Sincero

This week’s title inspired by: Birthday, performed by Paul McCartney & Ringo Starr, live at Radio City Music Hall 7/7/10, because I was there and I saw it live!

Pledge Of Allegiance

August 24, 2016

Posted by Ran Isner

A little over 11 years ago I moved to the US to study acting. After my freshmen year I met my wife and 4 years later we got married. All my life people told me that I should live in America because I know everything there is to know about American pop culture that i might as well be American.

One never knows where life will take them and my life happened to bring me here. I believe wholeheartedly that I was meant to come here so I could meet my amazing wife. I was meant to be on this journey that brought me here and has me writing these words. With her I feel that I am right where I need to be, and we have two beautiful children which further affirms my belief.

Not too long ago I started my naturalization process and by the end of this process I will be an American citizen. I like to keep myself up to date on what happens in this country and basically be well informed. The way I see it is, if I live here I might as well have a say in where this country is headed.

This decision was not a difficult one to make. My life is here, my family is here and this is where I want to be. I’m not saying I don’t miss Israel, I do, and I think that I sometimes block those emotions from coming out because I feel guilty. I feel that I haven’t been in touch with my Israeli self and that includes introducing Israel and it’s customs to my children. I have wanted to assimilate so much to make it easy on myself that I have been neglecting my roots. As I am writing these words I am getting very emotional because I don;t want to feel that guilt anymore. The fact that I am becoming an Amrican doesn’t mean that I must forget where I came from.

Today I went to the USCIS processing center for my biometrics. That means that They took my fingerprints, a photo and my signature for record keeping. I realized that that’s the signature is going to be on my passport eventually! It wasn’t after I left there that I really understood the magnitude of it all. At the naturalization ceremony, you pledge to renounce your allegiance to any other country and as I was reading those words I felt a pinch. At that moment, when I let it sink in, it felt like I had given something up right then and there. Fun fact! Israel is one of the only countries that the US allows it’s citizens keep their citizenship thus becoming a dual citizen.

I am very grateful to be in the position I’m in and I am not taking it for granted. I know that I have exhibited some upper limit symptoms this week because I have been off my routine and have been allowing myself to take my eyes off the prize. This is a great thing that’s happening yet my mind and my ego are so afraid of change that they convince me that I shouldn’t be this happy.

Another thing I am grateful for? This blog. This medium a gives me the opportunity to let things out. It allows me to be present, raw and real and be who I really am. No masks, not stories, only truth.

Thank you all for taking the time to read this, I really appreciate it.

Marie + Bathing Suit = Facing Fears

It’s not surprising that after 5 days in Vegas my weight is up this week.  I definitely let loose a bit and had some meals that included gluten and dairy.  I wasn’t planning on it, but the food looked so good and the allure of “vacation” was strong.  I did my best to stay on track drinking my shakes 1-2 times a day and I avoided unnecessary snacking, but being away gave me an excuse to be less than rigorous about my choices.

I did one cleanse day when I got back to just reset a little which helped me stop with the unhealthy choices.  It’s so easy to keep going down that path once you get home and there’s the stress of unpacking and settling back in, but I was determined not to let the holiday continue!

My husband Ran also came home and did a 2 day cleanse and is at his lowest weight so far for the challenge this week.  We literally came out of the event in Vegas with nothing holding us back from our health and wealth goals.

My birthday is next Tuesday and I’m turning THIRTY FIVE.  My goal was to be at my lowest weight in 3 years, and I am happy to say that I’ve achieved it!  I am very proud of my progress so far.  I have new goals for the rest of the challenge that I am working towards for the next 5 weeks.  This challenge ain’t over till it’s over!

Week 11 Results

Weight: 187.8 (-9.2 since start, +3.4 change since last week)

Cleanse days completed this week: 1 (11 total for the challenge)

Non-Scale Victory:  I went to my dad’s for a quick dip in the pool and managed to bring my shake with me.  So many times in the past I would have just eaten whatever was available and not taken the time to prepare for myself.  This time I brought the shake, and drank it (!) and had a little self-care victory!

What I want to be acknowledged for this week:  Meeting my goal of being at my lowest weight in 3 years on my birthday!

Book I am reading this week: You Are a Bad Ass, by Jen Sincero

This week’s title inspired by: Can’t Hold Us, by Macklemore & Ryan Lewis

Posted by Ran Isner

Are you serious? Or curious?

Have you ever been asked this question? This question is something we ask prospective coaching clients in our nutritional cleansing business. I’ve heard that question mentioned many times but I don’t think I’ve ever taken the time to understand what that question really means.

I know this about myself. I have followed through on very little in my life. To be fair, the things I’ve followed through on were pretty huge. I was a top gymnast, I moved to the US when I was 25, I graduated College with honors, I married the woman of my dreams and had two beautiful children with her and we bought an apartment. Pretty impressive right? I know it is, but the trick is to follow through on the little things that are not quite as life  changing at first.

What I mean by that is that I was lacking integrity. My word wasn’t worth much because I kept making promises and never making good on them. I’m talking about housework and things to do with the household. I would promise I would take care of things and forget to actually take care of them, you know, the everyday kind of stuff.  It hurt me in my professional life and even more severely in my personal life. My marriage was on the line because my word was worth nothing and my wife felt that she couldn’t count on me to be there for her and our children if I was not being my word. That was both my rock bottom and my wake up call.

Going to therapy and working on my own personal development has helped me grow as a person, husband, father and fellow human being but I needed that jolt to help me face who I was being in the world. I was a man without a word. I wasn’t serious, hell I wasn’t even curious! I was going through life like a zombie, hoping that something will come to me by way of a miracle.

Ever since the event I attended with Marie in Arizona, a monumental shift has happened within me. They say “when the student is ready, the teacher will appear”. I was ready, ready to finally be a man of my word. There are still moments where I catch myself being out of integrity but I no longer beat myself up for it, I acknowledge it and embrace it because that is the only way to grow.

I finally realized that I had to be a man of my word with myself before I was a man of my word with others. I have been letting myself down for so many years but I never gave it any significance because I didn’t love my self enough to realize I matter. Loving myself created a space for me to pursue the things that will propel me forward and that will allow me to create a life by my design and not a life by default. I am creating my own opportunities instead of waiting for them to magically appear.

Being curious is great, it means that you are moving in the right direction but being curious will not get you to where you want to be. Being curious will not ignite the fire you require to take it to your next level, whatever that may be for you.

For the longest time I didn’t do anything with my business but I had this vision of freedom and abundance that I hoped I would attain one day. To quote a famous line from “Gone With The Wind”, “wishin’ ain’t gettin’!” How will I ever achieve the freedom and abundance I desire if I don’t become serious about what it is I want to achieve?

For the first time ever in my life I am ready to put in the work required for me to pursue and achieve my goals. I am coachable, open to new experiences, creating new healthy habits, ridding my life of chaos( I am actually working with a schedule now!) but most importantly, I am being a man of my word.

So tell me, are you ready to get serious about your life? or are you content with being curious?

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Marie at Gala 2016 (left), Marie & Ran (right)

Turning back the clock this week as I’ve broken through on my weight in a MAJOR way.  Remember 2010?  The year that gave us the Gulf Oil Spill and the Apple Ipad?  Well I haven’t weighed this little (!) since 2010!  Since I’ve recorded my weight on My Fitness Pal since the beginning of 2013, I have a pretty good record of what I weighed and when.  If I get time, I’ll plot it out on a graph for you all complete with the all the emotional lampposts that influenced it all.  Some years I was not in the mood to take care of myself it seems.  And I am always one for a little Microsoft Excel spreadsheet action.

2010 was also the last time before I started having kids.  I became pregnant with my son Dylan in November 2010 at 195lbs.  It was a difficult year for me prior to that.  Honeymoon bliss had worn off and my husband was out of work.  I didn’t feel as connected to my husband as I had before we’d gotten married.  Plus, I was stalled at work having been in the same position for 3 years with no promotion in sight.  I was feeling stuck, disconnected and uninspired.  In 2008 I’d released 23lbs and in 2010 I put it all back on.

In between having my two children I did my best to release the weight and the closest I got was 185.4.  Then, I decided to get pregnant (again)!

Now, I’m working on my health not just from a calorie standpoint but also a mindset transformation.  Before when I succeeded at losing weight, it was because I was dealing with the symptoms (being fat) and not the root cause of the problem (my mindset around food/eating).  That’s why I would always rebound, I wasn’t treating the root cause.  Now that I’ve found the best system for my body to lose weight AND I’m working on my mindset, I am deliriously happy.  My goal is finally within reach.  I am poised to keep the weight off this time around.

I’m sure you want to know what secret sauce of mindset training I am doing to cause all these breakthroughs.  I’d love to tell you, but it’s not just a silver bullet method.  I’m coaching with experts, spending time at Landmark, reading books, listening to podcasts, working with a naturopathic doctor, connecting with my colleagues, pushing myself at the gym, and so many other new behaviors.  It’s not just 1 thing, it’s so many things that I’ve exposed myself to over the past 22 months that have lead me to this point.  And I’m sure there’s more for me to do so that I can achieve my goals, so I don’t stop moving forward. We never stop working on ourselves otherwise we start to slip back.

Doing this 16 week challenge with Ran has been so wonderful for our relationship.  We are connecting and supporting each other with cleanse days and workouts.  We are a stand for one another to achieve our health goals.  We are enjoying spending time together coaching our team and building our business.  We feel kinda like newlyweds again.  We are deliriously happy in our relationship after being together for 11 years.  It’s truly magical.

Week 10 Results

Weight: 184.4 **New Lowest Weight!!** (-12.6 since start, -5.2 change since last week)

Workouts: 2 (1 Bootcamp, 1 Zumba, 28 total since start)

Cleanse days completed this week: 2 (10 total for the challenge)

Non-Scale Victory: Everything to do with the gala I attended on Tuesday night was a non-scale victory.  Wearing a new dress, feeling confident in it, doing my own hair, feeling sexy, and not getting all weird and anxious about it.  Getting ready without drama, tears and anxiety is the best non-scale victory for me.  The day of my wedding I was so nervous about my dress that I cried while I was putting it on.  I never want to deal with that again.

What I want to be acknowledged for this week:  Finally planning for a day at the pool with my kids and actually packing myself healthy food.  Packing for my trip to Vegas with ease.  Getting up at 6am for Zumba (which I’ve only done once before) and breaking through my fear about being the most uncoordinated person there.

Book I am reading this week: You Are a Bad Ass, by Jen Sincero

This week’s title inspired by: Delirious, by Steve Aoki ft. Kid Ink

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HALFWAY POINT!! I’m really pleased with my results so far.  So many people are starting to take notice and are supporting my journey – it really makes it so much more fun.  Thank you to everyone who made a comment and encouraged me!

I think I had a major breakthrough this week…emotionally!  Which I promise, is related to my weight.  In my business we say, how much weight did you “release”? Instead of “lose”.  Using the word “lose” makes it sound like you may want to find it again, which no one does!  So we say “release” instead, so that it may never come back and find you!  For me, my extra weight was related to so many things that I’d never realized until I became a health coach.  A lot of them are personal, but I’ll share a few here to give you an idea of how the mind/body connection can be a factor in your weight loss journey.  My family is full of people who are overweight – everywhere from 10lbs to 100lbs.  So for me, to release weight and be at my goal weight would mean on some level to not be connected with my family anymore.  That sounds crazy on the surface, but that is a real reason to resist losing weight.

You want a gut check? Take a pen and paper and write 20 reasons why you don’t want to lose weight.  Someone challenged me to do this and I did it reluctantly.  But I found it really cathartic.  The reasons will surprise you.  Another one of mine is that if I got to my goal weight I was afraid that I’d be under more scrutiny from people about how I ate and lived my life.  I was also afraid that if I got to my goal weight I’d have to eat way less to maintain it.  I’m also afraid that I’ll lose my struggle and my identity wrapped around my weight loss struggle.  The struggle is very familiar, I’ve been doing it for a decade!

I wrote the list, then I shared the list with a confidant and decided these were all “reasons” I could overcome.  And just like that, I decided to let go.  I stopped “trying to let go” or “struggling to let go” and I just let go.  One of my coaches, Jeffery Combs, has been teaching me about how letting go is a decision.  Not, as he puts it, “a ‘How do I?'”  He says, “Why don’t you?”  I decided this week I have suffered enough and I let it all go, all 2o reasons.

And you know what, I lost another half pound.  This mind/body shit really works.

I’ve named this week’s blog after a song that Ran and I performed at an event for Jeffery Combs back in December.  To me, it’s a song about letting go.  I put a link at the bottom to a short video of our performance.  Enjoy.

Week 8 Results

Weight: 187.6 (-9.4 since start, -0.4 change since last week) *Averaging 1.175lbs per week, overall goal for challenge is 25lbs

Workouts: 3 (23 total since start) *1 behind on Schedule

Cleanse days completed this week: 1 (8 total for the challenge) *Right on Schedule

Non-Scale Victory: Virtually shopping for a gala gown was actually fun this week! Instead of looking for dresses that would hide my body I was actually excited to show it off!  Buying dresses for formal events is pretty stressful for me usually and this time I was very relaxed about it.  This is big growth for me, getting dressed in the past used to give me anxiety attacks!

What I want to be acknowledged for this week:  I really got back in the kitchen this week and cooked up some delish food for myself and my family.  I had been resisting cooking because I was lazy, bored or just too hot! But this week I made a few new recipes and I started to enjoy cooking again!  I made Sweet & Smoky Chicken, Zesty Turkey Meatballs, Quinoa Salad and Shiitake Bacon!

Book I am reading this week: Love Louder, by Preston Smiles *Already completed my 4 book goals for the challenge

This week’s title inspired by: You Only Wake Up When’s It Over, performed by Marie & Ran Isner

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I was trying to figure out in my head the math on Week 7 and how much of the challenge I have completed.  (It’s 43.75%).  Numbers are a big thing for me.  I always enjoyed math as a kid and was even considered good at it until we got to the hard stuff in Pre-Calculus. Math is so black and white which is why I think I gravitated towards it. I’ve always been a very black/white, right/wrong, yes/no kinda person.  It’s something I’ve worked on, because life isn’t always black/white.  I always assumed I knew everything about a particular situation because I’m naturally inquisitive and asked a lot of questions, but that’s just not true.  There’s always going to be part of a situation that you don’t fully know about.  Naturally, then I would find out some detail that I didn’t know before and my whole perception would change.  The realization was then that I DIDN’T know everything (hah!) and what I thought was black or white was actually gray.  Usually it is gray, in fact.

Understanding this about myself has been great for my personal development and helping me not be so judgmental and all, but when it comes to your weight, either it’s UP, DOWN or the SAME.  This is math.  And it’s been pissing me off!

For the past few weeks I’ve been going up slightly after my last deep cleanse.  I was ready to throw in the towel completely (on deep cleansing) because I was failing at cleanses.  I tried twice and ended up giving up around dinner time.  Then my dad called.  My dad! “You can’t give up on cleansing!”  Ok dad, OK.  I’ll try one more time.  Maybe I needed the pressure, maybe I needed the reassurance, maybe I just needed my parent to take me to task. But I did it.  And once it was done I broke through my lowest weight since giving birth to Daphne (who’s now 20 months old by the way) and reached 188.

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How I felt stepping on the scale to 188!

I first hit 189 in January of 2016 and I’ve been flirting with it ever since.  Hit it again in June and now I’m on the other side of it at 188.  One of my goals is to be at my lowest weight in 3 years on my birthday on 8/23.  If I stayed at 188 I would achieve that goal, but my stretch goal would be to hit 185 by my birthday.  The last time I weighed 185.4 (which was my lowest since having kids was Oct. 2013).  This is a significant number for me, because for 3 years I have remembered the joy I felt seeing 185.4 on the scale that day.  I remember what I wore (a denim dress from Gap) and what I did that day.  It was a landmark day for me on this journey.  I’d love to recreate that for my 35th birthday.

MI and LM at QVC

How I felt stepping on the scale to 188!

So 185, would be uncharted territory for me in this chunk of my life post having children, and who knows what could come next? The possibilities are there for the taking!

Week 7 Results

Weight: 188 (-9 since start, -4 change since last week)

Workouts: 4 (20 total since start)

Cleanse days completed this week: 2 (7 total for the challenge)

Non-Scale Victory: Wearing a bathing suit at the public pool and feeling good about what my body looked like.  For many of us “swimsuit season” sends shivers up our spines.  But for the first time in about 3 years, I’m feeling good about how I look and even better about how I feel.

What I want to be acknowledged for this week:  Deep cleansing on the weekend! In 3 years of cleansing, only once did I cleanse on a weekend day (Sunday) and I dragged my friend to the movies so I could spend a few hours not thinking about food.  This week I embarked on a cleanse on Friday/Saturday and it was the first time in a while that it went well.  Maybe it was the heat, but I wasn’t that hungry.  I didn’t get any heartburn (that had been happening) and I got through it without picking a fight with my husband (that had been happening too, mostly when I was at the tail end of the cleanse).

Book I am reading this week: The War of Art, by Steven Pressfield

This week’s title inspired by: Anything Could Happen, by Ellie Goulding

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It’s interesting that I’m reading a book about resistance, and tonight I am resisting writing this blog update.  Funny how that works.  Thanks a lot Steven Pressfield.

Here’s a juicy tidbit from The War of Art

“Resistance and Sex

Sometimes Resistance take the form of sex, or an obsessive preoccupation with sex.  Why set? Because sex provides immediate and powerful gratification.  When someone sleeps with us, we feel validated and approved of, even loved.  Resistance gets a big kick out of that.  It knows it has distracted us with a cheap, easy fix and kept us from doing our work.

Of course not all sex is a manifestation of Resistance.  In my experience, you can tell by the measure of hollowness you feel afterward.  The more empty you feel, the more certain you can be that your true motivation was not love or even lust but Resistance.”

It goes without saying that this principle applies to drugs, shopping, masturbation, TV gossip, alcohol and the consumption of all products containing fat, sugar, salt or chocolate.”

This totally resonated for me because how many times in my life did I eat an entire sleeve of cookies or bag of chips and then feel hollow inside.  It was my equivalent of sleeping with a stranger that I’d just met.  I never really over ate Kale chips, it was always fat, sugar, salt and chocolate.  The food was my “cheap, easy fix that kept me from doing my work”.  I thought for a long time I was an out of control emotional eater, but maybe I was just having Resistance?  Interesting…

Meanwhile, last night was my cheat meal, so when I weighed myself I was none too thrilled, but I realize it’s an anomaly.  Believe me, I was definitely trying to think of ways to drop 4lbs before publishing this blog, but I didn’t come up with any, so I decided to post the truth.

Last week, I received so much support from you all on my struggles with losing just 0.4 of a pound.  Thank you.  I wish I could say I didn’t cry and totally give up for a few days, but I did.  Oh and did I mention I had a meltdown at the gym?  The cherry on top of my dairy-free sundae this week, crying to the 22 year old trainer at the gym about my weight.  I was so stressed out.  I finally realized that being so stressed wasn’t going to help, it was only going to hurt.  With cortisol coursing through my veins it’s gonna be difficult to continue to lose weight.  That’s just how the body works!

The plus side, is that I’m getting my workouts in and really pushing at the gym.  I feel stronger and more toned.  I am still using my bullet journal and getting things done in a timely manner.  I am falling asleep to peaceful quiet instead of sitcom re-runs.  My clothes fit a lot better.  I am happier.  People notice a change in me, even if it isn’t reflected on the scale the way I want.  I’m reading an entire book every 7-10 days.  I’m not wasting time on things like TV or Candy Crush.  I have made a lot of progress over the past 6 weeks, and there’s still 10 weeks to go.  I am not going to let a number on the scale define me anymore.  Not when there’s so much other great stuff happening.  Just like I don’t let my IQ, shoe size or cup size define me, I am not going to let this define me either.

Week 6 Results

Weight: 193 (-4 since start, +3.4 change since last week)

Workouts: 4 (16 total since start)

Cleanse days completed this week: 0 (5 total for the challenge)

Non-Scale Victory: Wearing a new outfit (with a strapless bra!) and feeling really good in it.  Feeling pretty, sexy and confident.  A lot of those feelings are new for me.

What I want to be acknowledged for this week:  My first 6am workout in a long while.  And I actually enjoyed the morning air and the sunshine during the workout instead of hating being awake that early.

Book I am reading this week: The War of Art, by Steven Pressfield

This week’s title inspired by: Don’t Blow It, by Eyes Lips Eyes and Honorable Mention: Get Over It, by Ok Go

Attitude Of Gratitude

July 13, 2016

Posted by Ran Isner

Yesterday was my wedding anniversary. 11 years ago yesterday( and I believe that it was a Tuesday as well) was the first time me and Marie met and four years later we became husband and wife. I knew I liked her but didn’t have the balls to ask for her number or ask her out because I thought I didn’t deserve her  and I was ready to let that opportunity slip away, an opportunity that would forever change my life. Luckily, Marie thought that this might be worth a shot, got my phone number and made up a fake party for me to show up to. I have been grateful to her ever since.

Being married is not easy, granted we did live together before we got married so it felt like we were married-ish but being married is forever, at least for me. Two people living together, two different personalities and two different ways of looking at things are now meant to spend the rest of their lives together and you think there isn’t going to be conflict? yeah… no. Believe me it could get ugly and you know why? because when you are that close to someone and things that you thought were acceptable back then are being questioned all of a sudden, your first instinct is to get defensive and argumentative. All of a sudden you find yourself resenting your spouse and the tension is tangible.

You know what’s the worst thing your spouse can do to you? they can show you how great you can really be but your self doubt is so strong that you get angry at them for even suggesting that and in turn you get angry at them. That was at least my case. I didn’t want to hear it! I thought that I was good the way I was and that trying to be great will only set me up to fail and what’s the point. When Marie suggested therapy I completely dismissed it. I dismissed it for years but we hit a point in our relationship where if I didn’t work my shit out, things were not going to go well. I hit a version of rock bottom and it was time to get to work on myself. Marie was encouraging me to attend The Landmark Forum and I resisted for 8 or 9 years. I knew nothing about it but thought that I was going to get brainwashed and was not going to take any part of it. Again, I had nothing to base this off of and Marie had done it and clearly she wasn’t brainwashed. I was at another one of my low points and even after I committed to doing it, I was trying to find ways to talk myself out of it. They say that one’s forum starts when they register and I completely got that. My journey didn’t get off to a god start. I procrastinated and waieted too long to register so the dates I was looking at were already sold out and as it turns out it fell on Father’s Day weekend and I made that my excuse, “Oh it’s Daphne’s 1st Father’s Day, I can’t possibly do it then”. See what I did there? I made an excuse not to go. Anyway, I called the center and I plead my case as to why they should let me attend the Forum that weekend. They did their magic and I got in. I felt so good after that and I thought to myself “why can’t I feel this way all the time?”

Starting a network marketing business is what really put me in the space where I was really open to growing. Owning your own networking marketing business requires you to grow personally if you want to attract the people that will help you grow your business and that you would be willing to help them grow theirs. I am so grateful for that opportunity. I am grateful because it really made my marriage better

The reason I just gave you the reader’s digest version of this journey is because Marie was the one who planted the seed and was always a stand for me being the best version of myself. She kept showing me the way to my greatness and even though I was frustrating as all hell and there were many breakdowns along the way, we are now in a place where we can communicate in a much more constructive manner and I have grown so much because of it.

I have learned that gratitude is such a major component to happiness and to living a life I love that I make it a point to be grateful for everything, the negative and the positive because being open to it and grateful for it helps me grow as a person and makes my life better.

What I am grateful for the most is Marie, she is my #1 fan and always sees the best in me even when I don’t see it in my self.

I have adopted an attitude of gratitude and since then I have seen a tremendous shift in my life.

There is so much in life to be grateful for, so show your gratitude to the people in your lives and tell them you love them because they made your lives that much better

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Week 5, Gym Selfie

“You look so slim!”

“You look great, Marie, keep it up.”

“I have been reading your posts every week and it keeps me motivated!”

“You should write for a magazine!”

These are just some of the compliments I received this weekend – okay ALL of them came from family members, but whatever!  I was so pleased people are starting to notice my hard work and the Light Yourself on Fire challenge.

And then, I got on the scale.  Whomp, whomp. 189.8.  It was such a downer.  ALL THAT HARD WORK FOR 1/2 a pound.  I think I actually said out loud to my scale “F you”.  I tried to shake it off, but man was I disappointed.  I felt like a failure about my own challenge.  And then, I went through all 5 stages of grief.

Denial – this scale can’t be right.

Anger – I hate this stupid scale and this stupid bathroom and this stupid body I have to live in.

Bargaining – If I could please just get down to 185 I would never lose my temper again with my children and never punish my body with junk food.

Depression – I am never going to lose this weight.

and Acceptance…I think I might still be working on that one.

So here’s the deal.  I remember 2008, the year I lost 23lbs on weight watchers and it was a painstaking journey of losing .2, .4, maybe 1 pound when you were lucky and then sometimes you’d gain and really want to throw in the towel.  But back then I was counting my points but I wasn’t armed with the knowledge I have now about cleansing and net carbs etc.  I thought now it would be easier, not harder.  Yes I realize I am 8 years older (is that math right? geez). But even still, why is it not happening faster????

I’ve tried in the past week 2 different cleanse days and both were failures.  That’s not common for me but it does happen from time to time. At this point, I’ve made a decision that I’m pretty much done with cleanse days for now.  I committed to 16 during this challenge and as of right now I’ve done 5.  I don’t know if I’ll change my mind from now till September, but that’s where I’m at.  I’m committed right now to healing my gut and maybe the best thing is to focus on that and not the weight loss.  It will come, I keep telling myself, if I build it, it will come.

Week 5 Results

Weight: 189.8 (-7.4 since start, -.4 change since last week)

Workouts: 4 (12 total since start)

Cleanse days completed this week: 0 (5 total for the challenge)

Non-Scale Victory: Wearing a bathing suit in front of my whole family and feeling good about it!

What I want to be acknowledged for this week:  I went to 3 parties/bbqs and managed to make it out alive! No dairy and no gluten!

Book I completed this week: Shoe Dog, by Phil Knight the creator of Nike

This week’s title inspired by: It Don’t Come Easy, by Ringo Starr

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Believe it or not, I’m now 25% done with this challenge.  Time is flying and I’m starting to settle into a routine.  I’ve been dairy free now since May 12th and this week I really got tested when we took the kids to the beach and then for pizza.  I knew full well I couldn’t eat any of it, but I felt strong enough that I could go with them and be okay smelling the sauce, cheese and bread.  I’m not gonna lie to you, it was hard.  I was tempted, but I had resolve that I wouldn’t introduce the dairy back into my system, because I knew it could be very painful afterwards.  (Both mentally and psychically).  Hello stomach ache!  Honestly, I won’t do that to myself again though, because there’s no honor is being miserable watching your kids and hubby eat pizza.

What I’m realizing with this challenge is that in the past I’ve been really good a doing stuff about 80% of the way.  I’ll study and do homework 80% of the time.  I’ll get to the gym 80% of the time I’m supposed to and I’ll eat well 80% of the time, but that’s not enough if I want to achieve my goals.  I’ve basically lived my life inside the Pareto Principle, that 20% of my efforts will result in 80% of my results. Over time, I’ve used it as shorthand to describe everything in my life.  Usually with the emphasis on, no one is perfect, and I can’t do everything 100%.  So, I’ll just focus on 80% compliance on pretty much anything.  It keeps me stuck in the same place and it’s really just about my ego trying to keep me safe.

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I did a boot camp challenge back in Oct/Nov and I never truly followed the eating plan (though I did a lot of workouts and won the “attendance” award) because of my ego.  “I’m a health coach, I KNOW what to eat.  I don’t have anything new to learn here.”  Just 6 short months later I’m finding out I have food sensitivities and everything I was eating was pretty much incorrect.  Now, that’s a blow to the ego.

Week 4 Results

Weight: 190.2 (-7 since start, 0 change since last week)

Workouts: 3 (Boot camp 3 days in a row!), 8 total since start

Cleanse days completed this week: 1 (5 total for the challenge)

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My “original” wedding band fits again

Non-Scale Victory: My wedding band fits again!! Truth be told, I’ve been wearing my “pregnancy” wedding band since 2011 and I was never really able to go back to my original wedding band which is way more sparkly!  When I got an upgraded engagement ring on my 5th anniversary, I was pregnant with Daphne so I wore it, but was never able since then to wear it with the original wedding band.  I tried it on yesterday, and it fit and it’s comfortable and it looks amazing!

What I want to be acknowledged for this week:  Seriously just letting go of my ego and really submitting to my coaches who are the experts.  All the best coaches have coaches. People like Richard Branson or Oprah have at least half a dozen for all the different areas of their life.  I will continue to utilize my coaches and stop making it all about my ego!

Book I’m reading this week: Power Vs. Force, by David Hawkins

Progress Report, Month One

Mostly to remind myself, here’s what I committed to at the onset. 

  • 16 cleanse days  – 5 done!
  • No dairy – done!
  • No gluten – 1 hot dog bun, but otherwise done!
  • 48 workouts – 8 done, I should be at 12 for the month so need to catch up
  • Read 4 books on personal development – 2 done!
  • Write a blog post on my journey every week – done!
  • Introduce at least 10 new people to this lifestyle – 2 done!

Goals:

  • Lose 25lbs – 7lbs done!
  • Ring in my 35th birthday at my lowest weight since 2009 – not sure what the exact numbers are but I’d say 185 would be the goal for this.
  • Assist my clients to lose a total of 50lbs (combined) – 9lbs so far!
  • Not obsess over every pound on the scale – done!
  • Have fun! – done!
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