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The Secret Between Lean & Ripped

don't miss the victory

Someone recently asked me how to get ripped. I said, “It depends on where you stop”. Here’s what I mean.

The woman who asked that question was already losing weight and leaning out. Whether she gets thin or gets super fit looking just depends on where she decides to stop. She can continue to lose fat as long as she continues her program. While your desired destination can be different than someone else’s, the process is basically the same. The same fit road has many stops along the way. You can stop at 10lbs lost, 20lbs lost or go until you reach super cut and fit.

The problem is, many people quit when they get comfortable. They think, “wow! I really like 20lbs lost. This is a fun place, I’ll stay here for a while and play”. While they are there, they start allowing for more calories – hence, breaking the weight loss cycle.

Another problem is people fall into a false sense of security. They get thin and begin to feel like they “deserve” the extra calories because they are now so fit and active. Because they aren’t as strict during this phase, they quickly lose a grip on how many calories they are really taking in – and before you know it, they’ve plateaued or even gained some calories back. The knee-jerk reaction is to rely on exercise to erase the extra calories, but they will quickly discover it is much easier to eat 1,000 than it is to burn 1,000 calories. Sadly, many people learn the hard way – after they gain some (or all) of their weight back.

Avoid making these mistakes. Avoid missing out on your biggest victory. Next time you feel like stopping, or settling for the results you’ve gotten so far, ask yourself this question: “What if I keep going?” Amazing things happen! “Better” happens! Even if you are doing great now, you can even do better if you keep pressing on. You can continue to improve. You can continue to get fitter, stronger, leaner, healthier. You can be victorious.

Don’t stop short of your greatest victory. Small victories are awesome, but you have even bigger victories awaiting you if you can just keep pressing on!

How to Kill a Bad Habit

Joyce Meyer said, “Every time you feed the flesh, you strengthen it. This is good if you are trying to build a good habit, but detrimental if you are trying to stop a bad habit. The way to “kill the flesh” is to starve it; to stop feeding it.”

feed your fitnessWhat a simple concept: Starve what you want to die, feed what you want to live. In the context Joyce was talking about, she was addressing feeding our physical desires, not necessarily just our stomach. Our body has physical desires. It lusts, it hungers, it wants to sleep, it wants to be lazy. Sometimes it wants to get angry, it wants to cuss, it wants to be get its way and if we LET it get its way, without practicing self control, the flesh will kill you.

So how do we subdue the flesh and grow the things we want to grow in our life? The same way we kill something or grow anything – it depends on how we feed it.

Trust me, if you don’t feed a plant it will die. If you don’t believe me, I’ll show you the plants on my back porch. However, the plants in my yard are thriving. Why? Because my lawn people take really good care of those plants. They feed it fertilizer, they get rid of weeds that may choke out any life, and they give it regular attention.

Our fitness is the same way. It requires attention. The more we feed it, the more it will grow. This means we need to attend to it regular. It also means we need to pull anything out of our life that might choke out our progress. And, it means we need to starve our bad habits (poor eating habits, laziness, business, etc) that will make it more difficult to succeed.

You are in control of your flesh. You decide what lives and what dies.

You are what you think:

“For those who live according to the flesh set their minds on the things of the flesh, (this means you decide what you want your mind should be on, think on those things, meditate on them, focus on them, fix it and keep it there. However, we can think on better things, healthier things, greater things…) “but those who live according to the Spirit set their minds on the things of the Spirit. Romans 8:5

What have you been allowing yourself to set your mind on that doesn’t belong? Decide now to not meditate on those things and replace those thoughts on the things you want to grow in your life. 🙂

31 Days of Motivation: The Impossible Starts with the Possible

Do what you can

Does someone become an olympic athlete by practicing the most difficult trick? No. A gymnist will start with a forward roll on the ground before they advance to cartwheels, round-offs and flips. They have to do what they CAN do first. Then they advance, onc small challenge at a time.

This is how our workouts are. If someone can’t do a military push up, they start on their knees. They may not even complete the movement in full range, but they do what they can, going deeper and deeper (with better and better form) each time they “practice it”.

If I had a dime for every boot camper, or member, who said they never DREAMED they’d be doing what they are doing now – I’d be filthy stinkin’ RICH! Sadly, many people don’t even begin to try because they don’t see what’s possible. All they see is the impossible.

Be encouraged! Don’t think about all the things you CAN do, just do what you can – and eventually, over time, you will be doing things you never thought possible!!

Happy 2014 everyone!! I hope you enjoyed my 31 Days of Motivation. More motivation to come!

31 Days of Motivation: Beware of Short Cuts

Bring Your Gym Bag, Your Muscles AND Your Brain

2014 victory

When I show someone an exercise, I believe it’s important to tell that person what we are working, why that exercise is working that muscle group, and how they can make the most of that particular exercise to get the results they want. Not only will they understand the importance of that exercise, and know how to do it correctly, they will be more motivated to do it when they understand what it will do for them.

Sure, I could easily just point to a machine and have them go through the motions. Shoot, if I did that, they’d HAVE to keep coming back to me for help. Maybe other people consider that good job security. Some trainers have the mentality of, “don’t teach them anything, or they might go off and do it themselves”.  But, if I just told people what to do, although it may change their body, it won’t change their mind.

mind makeoverHere’s my philosophy. People need a mind make-over. People need more than guidance, they need education. They need to make better decisions when no one is around to tell them what to do. The more a trainer empowers people with knowledge, the more lives they can change. The more success stories, the better their reputation will be – that THEY were the one that helped so many people reach their goals.

Sadly, some people just don’t want to learn. Often times people resort to short cuts or programs that tell you what to do because they don’t want to think for themselves. While joining a program that directs you is a good thing, beware of spending hours being told what to do without learning anything. Don’t be afraid to think, to try to understand, to invest time and energy in learning.

We are supposed to LEARN from our hard work. Dedication and discipline is supposed to challenge us, grow us and teach us how to persevere and overcome obstacles. Don’t look for short cuts, look for the right path – no matter how long or hard it looks. The right path is where you will learn the most, and you’ll learn how to stay on track once you get there!

Don’t look for shortcuts, sometimes the hardest routes teach us the most!

14 Quotes to Motivate You to Work Hard in ’14!

  1. The reason a lot of people do not recognize opportunity is because it usually goes around wearing overalls looking like hard work. Thomas A. Edison
  2. Plans are only good intentions unless they immediately degenerate into hard work. Peter Drucker
  3. Perseverance is the hard work you do after you get tired of doing the hard work you already did. Newt Gingrich
  4. Enjoy your sweat because hard work doesn’t guarantee success, but without it you don’t have a chance. Alex Rodriguez
  5. Hard work spotlights the character of people: some turn up their sleeves, some turn up their noses, and some don’t turn up at all. Sam Ewing
  6. Talent in cheaper than table salt. What separates the talented individual from the successful one is a lot of hard work. Stephen King
  7. Young people are threatened… by the evil use of advertising techniques that stimulate the natural inclination to avoid hard work by promising the immediate satisfaction of every desire. Pope John Paul II
  8. For every two minutes of glamour, there are eight hours of hard work. Jessica Savitch
  9. All the problems of the world could be settled easily if men were only willing to think. The trouble is that men very often resort to all sorts of devices in order not to think, because thinking is such hard work. Thomas J. Watson
  10. You can’t get there by bus, only by hard work and risk and by not quite knowing what you’re doing. What you’ll discover will be wonderful. What you’ll discover will be yourself. Alan Alda
  11. Temporary success can be achieved in spite of lack of other fundamental qualities, but no advancements can be maintained without hard work. William Feather
  12. No great achiever – even those who made it seem easy – ever succeeded without hard work. Jonathan Sacks
  13. Opportunity looks a lot like hard work. Ashton Kutcher
  14. A dream doesn’t become reality through magic; it takes sweat, determination and hard work. Colin Powell

31 Days of Motivation: Beware of Motivation

fitness fairy

If I had a dime for everyone who said they just weren’t motivated to workout, I’d be filthy stinkin’ RICH! It’s like people are waiting on this euphoric feeling of magical motivation that lifts them up off the couch like Tinkerbell, slips on their ruby tennis shoes like Dorthy, and floats them to the gym on a enchanting carpet of inspiration and fitness excitement like Aladdin.

It’s a Fantasy Wonderland where cauliflower tastes like Feticcini Alfredo and grilled chicken tastes like Filet Mignon rapped in bacon and topped with Gorgonzola cheese. It’s where a low calorie diet satisfies you each and every day – and, no matter how low your calories are, you have enough energy to power the entire the gym as soon as you walk through the doors. …Oh yeah, and Snow White is your best friend, saying “just one more rep”, and you say “No! I can do 100, because that’s how you roll!!”

fitness fairyYeah, I’m pretty sure that place doesn’t exist. While motivation is surely preferred, it is not required for success. Sadly, many people wait on it to show up, like it’s a workout partner you can’t train without.

Listen people, motivation comes and goes. Motivation is just a feeling. Determination is what will get you to your goal – not motivation. Motivation will drop you faster than the drunk on a mountain bike.

Motivation Where Art Thou?

fitness fairyDoes it mean you quit searching for it? NO! It can surely help you, but it’s not something you should rely on. You have to rely on the decision you made to reach your goals – on good days, on bad days, on days you are motivated, on days you are completely exhausted and discouraged. You keep showing up because you have a goal to reach. You don’t stop for anything, anyone or anything. Your decision has been made.

Heart vs. Mind

motivation is prferred

While there are many real things in life that motivate us to do stuff, most of us think of motivation as the warm and fuzzy energizing feeling. I’m here to remind you, feelings will let you down. They lie to you, they cheat you, they mask the truth and they rob you of your joy. However, determination is a DECISION. It’s not that people who are determined have extra super-powers or don’t have bad days – they just decided ahead of time to not let their feelings change their decision.

Determination:

  • A quality that makes you continue trying to do or achieve something that is difficult
  • A fixed intention to achieve a desired end.
  • The settlement of a dispute or question. (Another words, quit debating with yourself. The decision has been made. There is nothing else to discuss or think about.)

Determination is not a quality you are born with, it’s learned. It’s practiced. It’s acquired over time. And, the more you practice it, the easier it will come – and the reward is what will motivate you to stay determined.

Homework:

Start practicing these traits today, and say goodbye to doubt, hesitation and indecision.

Synonyms: resolution, purpose, resolve, drive, energy, conviction, courage, dedication, backbone, fortitude, persistence, tenacity, perseverance, willpower, boldness, firmness, staying power, stubbornness, strength of character, constancy, single-mindedness, earnestness, obstinacy, steadfastness, doggedness, relentlessness, strength of will, resoluteness, indomitability, staunchness.
Antonyms: doubt, hesitation, indecision, vacillation, irresolution

 

31 Days of Motivation: What Do Your Actions Say About Your Goals?

fit body

I am about to reveal how this fit chick got so stinkin’ hot and tone. It may not be what you think. She didn’t get fit by talking about it. She didn’t sculpt abs by posting workouts on facebook. She didn’t take a pill. She didn’t do it in 6 minutes a day. She didn’t use the Ab Lounge or Thigh Master. It wasn’t her protein shakes, supplements or even her healthy eating that got her looking that good. It wasn’t good intensions, a support group or counseling. No, it was WORK. Very hard work – in the gym and in the kitchen.

Surprise! The people who reach their goals work for it. Their actions speak even louder than their words. They live today, how they they desire to be tomorrow. They don’t have to feel motivated and they don’t have to love each workout – they just have to show up and do the work.

Good News for the Rebel

actions speak louder than wordsWe’ve heard all our life that actions speak louder than words, but how many people talk about getting fit more than they act like it? We are all guilty of that at some point. Sadly, I think we release ourselves from guilt because of our “good intensions”, but what does God say about good intensions? Check out this story that Jesus tells about two sons – one rebellious, and one who appears to be respectful. This is one of my favorite stories because it is so encouraging to see it’s not about how bad we mess up, but about getting on track (or getting back on track) after you messed up. It also (to me) speaks volumes about good intensions. Powerful & encouraging. Here’s the story…

“What do you think? (Jesus says) A man had two sons, and he came to the first and said, ‘Son, go, work today in my vineyard.’ He answered and said, ‘I will not,’ but afterward he regretted it and went. Then he came to the second and said likewise. And he answered and said, ‘I go, sir,’ but he did not go. Which of the two did the will of his father? They said to Him, “The first”.” Then Jesus goes on to say “Assuredly, I say to you that tax collectors and harlots enter the kingdom before you.” (simply because they believed and ended up repenting) Matthew 21:28-32

I think we all have a tendency to rebel. I also think we all “WANT” to do good, and don’t. Sometimes you just have to do what is right, even when you don’t want to (even if it is out of regret and guilt at first). As God blesses you for it (because He will!), I believe your heart will soften and the desires of your heart will change. Now, back to fitness and using this scripture for life application…

Actions Speak Louder

live today how you desire to becomeI believe these same applications applies to fitness (as well as many other areas). It is better to show up dreading your workout than to talk about it, pack your gym bag, and skip the gym. Good intensions aren’t going to get you results. Pretending to be fit, won’t get you results. Posting it on facebook won’t get you results. Your actions must reflect your desires – and sadly, your lack of actions may tell people that you don’t want it as bad as you say you do.

Like the priests and elders (Jesus was speaking to), talking the talk, is not as important as walking the walk. Going to the gym, but not being disciplined in the kitchen, is like going to church on Sundays, and acting like the devil at home. You have to live it – 7 days a week, in public and in private. Like I always say “what you eat in private will show up in public (on your hips!) eventually.”

“Don’t wait on motivation. Don’t wait to “feel like it”. It’s OK to fight it, hate it, dread it, and to rebel against it…at first.” 

Just do it. Don’t wait on motivation. Don’t wait to “feel like it”. It’s OK to fight it, hate it, dread it, and to rebel against it and say “NO! I will not” (but regret it and go anyway). You can mess up, and still stand proud because you DID IT – and you WILL be rewarded. Then, the reward will keep you coming back, and do a major work in your life and body, as well as your mind.

Let’s commit to DOING not just SAYING. Let’s commit to ignoring our rebellious heart and mind, and be obedient – doing what we MUST do TODAY to go where we WANT to go TOMORROW.

I believe most of us want to do the right thing. We want to lose weight and take care of our bodies. We want to be healthy, disciplined and responsible. Now we just need to fully commit to LIVING like we WANT to live. Actions do speak louder than words – to you and everyone else who is watching, including God.

Are you acting as fit as you want to become?

31 Days of Motivation: Trapped in Your Future Body

new bodyAs you set goals for the New Year, it’s not only important to look at what you WANT, but it’s crucial you look at what you DON’T want. Maybe failure is not about what you ARE doing, but what you ARE NOT doing.

Moving on, in many ways, means saying goodbye. The problem is, goodbyes are often hard, even when the place we are headed may be a good place to be. I don’t know why it is so hard to let go of the past, but it is. We prefer the known over the unknown I guess. Ironically, we often prefer the known even if the known is in prisoning us.

It may sound crazy, but I believe many of us don’t get to experience a lot of great things in life because we have such a strong grip on the past. This issue can also affect us when attempting to make New Year’s resolutions – especially when it comes to weight loss.

monkey trapIt reminds me of the story of the monkey trap. The trap is basically a hollowed out coconut filled with rice. The coconut, which is chained to a stake, has a small hole in it just big enough for the monkey’s hand to go in but too small for his closed fist of rice to come out. Crazy as it seems, the monkey cannot see that freedom without rice is more valuable than being captured with it and is trapped.

Like the monkey, we are often scared of losing something, like a favorite food or a certain lifestyle. While pride may stand in the way for some, others hold on to excuses. Unfortunately, many people simply accept things the way they are, as if there were no other choice. In essence, we are no different than the monkey – trapped by our own decisions.

fear of unknownSometimes we need to take a closer look at what is standing in the way of our success. What do we have such a tight grip on? What has kept us from making our New Year’s Resolutions stick last year or what prevented us from even making them to begin with? Whatever your answer is, this year is the year to let go so you can move on.

Don’t fall for the monkey trap this year.

FAILURE

Homework:

Write down the things holding you back right now. Post them so you see them every day. Every day you decide NOT to do anything about it, is a day you decide to stay where you are.

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31 Days of Motivation: Get the YOU 2.0 Update

be better version of you

Yesterday I talked about the power in trying. As you know people LOVE motivational words, quotes and images. After I mentioned the quote that has been shared all over social media saying, “no matter how slow you go, you are still lapping everyone on the couch“, I decided to make a similar quote to remind us that we are only competing with ourself.

Today I want you to focus on being a better version of yourself. It really DOES matter how slow we go if we are not improving. At the same time, it DOESN’T MATTER how weak we are, or how slow we go, if we are better than we USED to be.

This year commit to what Steve calls “keeping your eyes on your own paper”. What he means is, focus on YOU and what you are doing. Don’t let Little Miss Suzy Q fit friend throw you off your game. There will always be someone better, faster, fitter, thinner, more motivated, more disciplined, more seemingly perfect – DON’T DARE EVEN COMPARE YOURSELF! Commit to focusing on YOU and simply defeating the old lazier version of yourself.

This year you have a chance to get the update – to reinvent yourself, work out all the bugs and run faster and better than  before. Enjoy all the victories, big and small, of simply beating the old you. Start the “YOU 2.0 UPDATE” today!

31 Days of Motivation: The 1st Step to Fitness Success (PART 2)

VICTORYBefore you can start on your fitness goals, you need to have a grasp on what your journey will require. Yesterday we talked about surrender vs deliverance. Today we are talking about making sacrifices. While you ABSOLUTELY can enjoy life, eat fun treats, etc. while moving toward your goal, it would be irresponsible for me to not warn you about the sacrifices you must be willing to make. Of course you may already know this to some degree, but if you are like 99% of the rest of America, you probably hope that you are one of the exceptions who will be able to have your cake, and eat a little too. It’s this mindset that gets you in trouble. You must be willing to do WHATEVER it takes to reach your goal – no matter the sacrifice. Before you can change your actions to get the weight off your thighs, you need to change your mind. Success always starts in the mind. So let’s talk….

Worth the Sacrifice

sweaty girlNowadays people try to do anything possible to avoid cutting back. We work harder so we don’t have to cut back expenses. We exercise more so we don’t have to change our eating. We try to change rules so we don’t have to change anything about us. The fact of the matter is there are certain things in life that REQUIRE sacrifice.

You can’t expect to be an Olympic Champion without making certain sacrifices. Many kids sacrifice parties, sleeping in, vacations, afternoon cartoons and other things regular kids enjoy. However, the reward is worth the sacrifice. The same goes with fitness. Most people can’t have the body they want and eat (and do) what they want. I don’t even mean a ripped physique – I mean a fit, healthy physique requires taking care of your body.

deny yourselfIf you want your body to last long, you need it treat it well. You need to drink less, eat healthier, rest more, get regular check ups and exercise often.  Living healthy requires sacrifice – and one of the BIGGEST sacrifices is denying yourself the things your flesh craves.

deny oneself
a. to refrain from satisfying one’s desires.
b. to refuse to indulge oneself in; abstain from.

Deny Yourself to Save Yourself

Scripture is full of truths. You don’t have to be a Christian to learn from what it says. Look at this statement, explaining what it takes to experience freedom and life. “If anyone would come after me, he must deny himself…For whoever wants to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for me will save it.” (Luke 9:23-34)

deny yourselfWhat does it mean by “lose your life”? It means a lot of things, but one thing it means is to let go – to be willing to sacrifice for a greater purpose. We often are obsessed with what our body and mind wants NOW, without thinking about what it will affect LATER. You must be willing to lose your life (to not feed these cravings) in order to become the man or woman God desires you to be. You don’t have to be a church-goer to relate to this. Seriously, this applies to everything in life. Great things require sacrifice – in your job, marriage, health and dreams.

What does it mean when it says “if you try to save your life, you will lose it”? Many people eat, drink, spend, love and party their way through life in a pursuit of happiness. They want to live life to the fullest and so they live for the moment. How many times have you heard someone say “if I just had _________, I’d be happy”. We often even treat money, food, power, climbing the corporate ladder, etc as our salvation – like if we get those things, it will save us. However, it’s the pursuit of these things that often destroy us. Our own selfishness is truly is the root of all our issues including food and our health. The taste of food, laziness, self-indulgences, comforts, not wanting to give up your time, and doing things that make you feel good for a moment are all things that can get in the way of your New Year’s goals.

“You Can’t Compete with What You Eat.”

Food-AddictionYou may think you can just workout more to make up for what you aren’t willing to cut back, but you can’t compete with what you eat. True success requires more than that. It’s funny that scripture doesn’t say, “If anyone would come after me, he must work harder“. No, that’s something we don’t mind doing. We don’t mind working hard (like exercising more, or doing more good deeds), but don’t dare tell me I have to deny myself chocolate, wine, time or money. “However, it is in the act of denying our flesh (the desires of our mind and body) that we become free and can really start to live. Otherwise, we live are just living in bondage of the things we refuse to give up. That is why it is in denying ourself, and truly surrendering those things, that we become free.

If you struggle with food, if you are unable to deny yourself or control yourself, you are allowing food to rule you. Food is your god. Food is your boss. Food owns you. The same goes with any other struggle. It could be alcohol, drugs, work or any other out-of-control area of your life that is out of balance or unhealthy. Just like you can’t compete with what you eat by trying to erase all frivolous your calories with exercise, you can’t always erase the damage by doing more good stuff. Some unhealthy habits must die. Look at Joyce Meyer says we can fix it…

“Everytime you feed the flesh, you strengthen it. This is good if you are trying to build a good habit, but detrimental if you are trying to stop a bad habit. The way to “kill the flesh” is to starve it; to stop feeding it.” Joyce Meyer.

You decide what is getting stronger or weaker in your life by what you are feeding. Are you feeding your bad habits? Are you investing time and energy in things that destroy you or lift you up and make you stronger? Are you ready to surrender the things in your life that have been keeping you from your goals. Are you ready to surrender WHO YOU ARE and tell the world that is no longer you, in order to BECOME who you WANT TO BE?

REMINDER (A little encouragement):

You may need to drink water and skip the fried hors d’oeuvres while everyone else stuffs their face at a party – but they won’t enjoy your healthy life. It’s a tradeoff. You can easily feel sorry for yourself, but I guarantee people would trade a healthy fit body for fried macaroni if they were honest. So while you may be jealous they are eating what they want, and feel sorry for yourself while you are dieting and denying yourself of your favorite pleasures, your friends are probably jealous of your discipline – and envy you for being on the path to looking and feeling how YOU want! 🙂

HOMEWORK:

  1. OBSTACLES: Make a list of the things you must sacrifice to reach your goals.
  2. DESTINATION/GOAL: Make a list of all the benefits of reaching your goals.
  3. THE BIG PICTURE: Compare the two and keep the lists visible to help keep you on track (and keep things into perspective) daily.

Did you miss Part 1? Read Surrender vs Deliverance 

31 Days of Motivation: The 1st Step to Fitness Success

Surrender to Win: Part 1

In this 2-part blog, I will be talking about surrender, deliverance and denying ourself. I know, you are probably already looking for the EXIT key. Believe me, it may not be the motivational words you think you want to hear, but they are words (packed with truths) I believe you need to hear before you can chase your goals and begin to really change once and for  all. By the time you are done with these 2 blogs, I believe (if you apply them) it truly can change your life. With that said, put on to your big-girl (or boy) britches and get ready for some tough talk.

SURRENDER

sur·ren·der  (s-rndr)
1. To relinquish possession or control of to another because of demand or compulsion.
2. To give up in favor of another.
3. To give up or give back (something that has been granted): surrender a contractual right.
4. To give up or abandon: surrender all hope.
5. To give over or resign (oneself) to something, as to an emotion: surrendered himself to grief.

In order to change, you must first surrender the things that have kept you from your goals so you can become who you want to be. You may need to surrender certain food, or surrender your time, so you can exercise more. You may need to surrender laziness and decide that is not who you want to be anymore. Whatever your goals, I guarantee it will require a certain level of surrendering.

Deliverance vs. Surrender

desperateI believe many people are waiting around to be miraculously delivered from their addictions, struggles, weight, health, financial stress, bad habits and selfish ways. They might even pray for deliverance, that God would just take away their desires completely. I personally believe, most of us can’t be delivered until we first surrender.

Seriously, think about it this way. If you are holding on to something SO tight, how hard is it for it to be pulled away from you? It would be very difficult. However, as you loosen your grip, it becomes easier to take away (not that God needs to workout harder so he can win an arm wrestling match). But how fair is it to ask God to rip something out of your hands that you refuse to let go of? Even if He did take it from you, if your mind hasn’t let go and you will likely just take it right back.

We have to surrender. We have to take the first step and let go – in our mind, in our heart and in our actions. It may take weeks or months of letting go before you are completely delivered. You may have to let go every morning and decide to continue surrendering certain things every single day of your life.

tradeoffLook at the first and second definitions of surrender. It explains surrender is often used in reference of giving up something for something else, something better. Surrendering to either avoid something bad, or in favor of something good. In war, someone may surrender (or wave the white flag) to save their life. In that case, a warrior may even lose his rights to land or freedom (something that is rightfully his), but it’s a trade-off. The same applies for us in many cases.

surrenderWe have the right to eat whatever we want. We have the right to say whatever we want. We have the right to be as fat and lazy as we want ….BUT that doesn’t make it right or best for us. We choose to surrender those things in order to have life (and a better, happier, more peaceful and joyous, healthy life).

Of course most of us are not held at gunpoint, forcing us to choose and wave the white flag, but there comes a time in our life where we come to the end of ourselves. We get tired of feeling bad. We get tired of the repercussions of our poor choices. Then we finally realize that surrendering is the only way to deliverance – AND that it will be SO worth it!

Warning signs you may be in bondage with food:

Here are some warning signs you need to take your relationship with food more seriously and make some serious changes (surrendering) in order to WIN the fight with fat once and for all!

  1. bondageWhen you are stressful, blue, mad, sad or excited – you reach for food. It’s your coping strategy.
  2. You panic if you can’t have it.
  3. You plan your whole diet around still trying to have certain foods or beverages.
  4. You focus on adding good habits, to avoid getting rid of bad ones.
  5. You look for fitness, diet plans, supplements and diet pills that allow you to keep doing/eating what you want. You buy every gimmick you see. (Why do you think stupid gimmicks like the “Cookie Diet”, “The Ab Belt” & Diet Pills does well? Because they prey on this type of person.)
  6. You work out more than you need to, to make up for eating more than you are supposed to.
  7. You can’t control yourself around it. If you have one, you have to have 5. If you can’t control yourself around something, then it is more than an indulgence, it’s an addiction.
  8. You binge. Maybe you deny yourself something, and when you finally do give in you go crazy.
  9. It is always on your mind. You talk about it, think about it, plan your day around it.
  10. You think you need it to be happy.

Homework (for the brave and determined:

While I’m not expert of food addiction, I can tell you that I’ve seen plenty of people be fully delivered from their prior addictions. You don’t have to fight a chemical dependency like a cocaine addict, but in some ways you likely have developed a coping strategy and a dependency on food to help you through life – to comfort you, to reward yourself, etc. In a way, food addiction is just an extreme bad habit that can be broken. Breaking habits take work, a lot of practice and a lot of introspection. So be honest with yourself and be openminded to the idea that your weight issue (or food/drink issue) is more than just a luxury you aren’t willing to part with – it could be more serious. If you treat is seriously, you CAN conquer it. However, the same way you can’t expect to put a bandaid on cancer and it heal, you can’t put a bandaid on a food addiction and expect it to go away. Some things must be cut out, removed, treated, operated on – until it’s GONE. 🙂

  1. What are the things (types of food, alcohol or habits) you need to surrender?
  2. Do you admit you are powerless around food, or certain types of food or drink? (this is actually the first step to recovery for true addicts. And it typically takes a while before someone come to grips with acknowledging they really are powerless. However, if you haven’t been able to give “it” up yet, it’s likely you are truly addicted to “it” or the lifestyle. Once you realize you are powerless, then you can begin “treatment” to gain back control.
  3. How do you plan to “let go” of these things? You have to know what this is going to look like. You also need to realize there’s a reward – you have to lose something to gain something (even better).
  4. What kind of support do you need? Are you willing to get the help you need no matter the cost (time, money, effort)? Put it this way, if you had cancer, would you do whatever it takes to get help?
  5. What actions and guidelines can you apply in your life that can help prevent you from falling into temptation. Drug addicts might change phones so drug dealers or friends don’t have their number anymore. They would quit frequenting their favorite hang outs, and start spending time with people who are on the same path. They would not allow whatever it is they are addicted to to be in the house, or around them. They would go to weekly meetings and they would join a 12-step program to learn what their triggers are so they can identify signs they may act out. They would require their friends and family to be supportive – and they too may join groups to learn how to be more supportive and understanding.

Note (the good news):

Realize, while some people will never be completely free from an addiction, as you separate yourself from the things that have ruled your life, it is likely those things will become less and less important to you. Over time, a rich food will likely not taste as good to you. Feeling healthy will feel SO good that you will know there is no comparison to your old past and old ways – so it will be easier to “say no”. The same way an true addict goes through withdrawals in the beginning, the hardest part will be the beginning of your journey. It will get easier, but also like an addict, you must never let down your guard. You have to guard yourself against things that can sabotage progress, as well as guard yourself against those same things when you reach your goal to avoid a relapse.

Next Up: Don’t forget to read tomorrow’s blog for PART 2 of this series. Subscribe (above right) to get notified when blogs are posted.

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