All Posts By

Dustin Maher

Single mom ready to end it all, chooses life

By | 21 Day Challenge, Challenge, Health, Killer Kurves, Lifestyle, Mindset, Moms, Mothers, Nutrition, Transformation Center

I knew Onica was a special person the day I met her. I only had about 20 minutes to get to know her, but I could see deep hurt within her and yet I also sensed she was a strong, determined woman that was ready to give it her all.

Fast forward about two months and I was sitting at the Transformation Center going through my e-mail when I received the testimonial you are about to read. The crazy thing about reading this e-mail that night was that Onica was standing about 15 feet in front of me, waiting for her Killer Kurves class to start. After you read her heartfelt story, click here to learn more about how Killer Kurves can help you or a loved one. Even if you don’t live near Madison, the video alone is worth 5 minutes to watch. ->-> Click here to watch the video

Take it away Onica….!

My name is Onica and I have struggled with my weight for as long as I can remember. I have gained and lost and lost and gained more times than I care to count. In high chool my diet of choice was Anorexia, I would eat nothing all day and then have just enough dinner so that my parents wouldn’t notice something was off. I kept the weight off until I was 25 and went from jobs where I stood all day and rarely ate breakfast or lunch to a desk job where it seemed like someone wanted to take everyone out to lunch daily. The pounds piled on quickly after that. I had my son at 26 and never lost the baby weight. Two years later I had my daughter and 6 weeks after she was born I joined a weight loss program. I did great and was 7 pounds from my goal when self destruction kicked in. We had recently moved an hour away from our hometown and I knew no one, I was a stay at home mom and it was winter. I learned that I love to bake and more than that I loved to eat what I baked. Again, the pounds piled on, I was more than I had ever weighed, even when I was pregnant.

Fast forward 2 more years, I was now a divorced, single mom trying to make ends meet. It wasn’t easy to say the least. Every small bump in my life made me feel like I was sinking deeper and deeper into a pit that I was never going to be able to claw my way out of. I felt that every single aspect of my life was just too much for me to handle, that nothing I did was good enough, or could possibly be worth anything to anyone, that my kids would be better off if I weren’t around. What kind of a role model was I for them? Wouldn’t it just be better for them if they didn’t grow up with a mom like me, someone who never had any time or energy for them, whose house wasn’t spic and span and who was fat? I had a plan to end it all, I didn’t have a time frame, but I had a plan. It would have appeared to have been an accident so that my ex would still get the life insurance to use for raising the kids and above all no one else would be injured and my kids wouldn’t be the ones to find me. I had a plan.

Then on September 5th an email came into my inbox from Dustin. It was about a 21 day clean eating challenge. My sister told me that she and her husband were going to take the challenge and that I should do it with them. I decided to go for it. Part of that was to meet with Dustin in person to discuss your weight loss challenges and goals etc. That day changed my life, more accurately, that day saved my life. After I gave a short run down on my weight history Dustin told me about his Killer Kurves program, I didn’t think there was any way I could make it work for me financially or with my schedule so I tried to just forget about it. However it seemed that nothing would make the thought of this program leave my head. It sounded so perfect for me. After several days of not being able to stop thinking about it I rearranged my schedule with my kids, worked out a financial plan and I signed up. I can honestly say that signing up for K2 was the best decision I have ever made for myself.

On our first night I was nervous but excited. Everyone there seemed to be in the same boat. The trainers were very friendly and accommodating to everyone’s fitness level and any physical limitations we had. The people were all super friendly and no one was judging anyone else. As the weeks have gone on we have formed a bond with each other, the support and encouragement is like nothing else I have ever experienced. We have turned into a family of sorts and I love it, I can’t imagine my life without K2 now.

One of the things that I have learned to do is to view food as fuel for my body and not a hobby or way to relieve stress. I won’t put a certain brand of gasoline in my car because it gets terrible gas mileage with it so why did I continue to put food in my body that was terrible for my health and energy? It has really changed the way I look at eating.

We are currently starting our 9th week of the 12 week program and I have lost 29.2 pounds and 14 inches. My self esteem is on the way back up and the pride in myself that I feel is amazing! The little things no longer throw me to the bottom of the pit and I am smiling more than I have in years. I’m not where I want to be yet but I am a whole lot closer and more importantly I now have the support, knowledge, and confidence in myself to keep going towards that goal and not to just give up because of a setback or hard day.

If there is anyone out there that is on the fence about joining Killer Kurves, I say do whatever it takes to make it happen! You will not be disappointed. I know I’m not. Your life will never be the same again.

Onica

Wow! When I first read her story I was so moved, I got teary eyed. Since she was also at the TC that night, I went over to her and gave her a big, long hug. I had no idea of her struggles or how Killer Kurves has given her a new lease on life. Her physical and emotional transformation is an inspiration!

Onica, I am beyond excited to see you continue to progress and am excited for the boundless opportunities life has in store for you. Thank you for courageously sharing your story.

Dustin

PS If you are ready to start your own journey of transformation, or just want to learn more, reply to this email or fill out the contact form here: http://madisonbootcamps.com/killer-kurves/ and I or one of my team members will get back to you!

Are you Desperate, Embarrassed, Fed Up, Frustrated, Overwhelmed, or Feel Like You Want to Give Up Trying?

By | Behavior Change, Health, Lifestyle, Mindset, Nutrition, Uncategorized

We would probably describe the above emotions as “negative” emotions and in one way I would agree.

These feelings suck and are what we don’t want to feel.

But…

I think these emotions can also be the best thing to ever happen to a person.

Why?

It is through this pain that we can decide right then and there that we are done living in the state we are living in and are ready to make a change.

Not just “try” but actually commit and “do.”

Now in the fitness world, many unfortunately prey on the desperation of people and offer late night infomercials, pills or creams that are guaranteed to melt fat away, or some prepackaged meals that sound like they will solve all their problems. But these “solutions” are pretty much BS or solve only 5% of the problem.

That is why I am excited when someone comes to me “desperate” because I know they have what it takes–they are ready–to create a life-changing transformation.

A transformation their friends, family, and coworkers can’t stop talking about.

I know what we offer at the Transformation Center is the real deal. It is 100% of the puzzle, not just 5%, as long as someone is ready to make the change.

If you have been following my journey over the past 13 years, you will find that I have hardly changed my strategies and beliefs in terms of how I help people get in shape.

In other words, I haven’t fallen for all the trends, gimmicks and fads.

As my friend Jamie Eason says, “the secret is there are no real secrets.”

It has and always will come down to the following formula for just about everyone.

  1. Mindset: Believe that you need to take care of yourself, if you are going to be able to be there for others. Believe that success is more than possible, no matter how many times you have failed before. Believe that you are worth the effort.
  2. Nutrition: Eat real food. The % of macros or even the number of calories to a certain degree is less important than just eating real food most of the time.
  3. Fitness: Exercise most days of the week with 2-3 days of strength training, a couple sessions of interval cardio and the rest steady state cardio. Move more throughout the day, every day. Doesn’t have to be intense all the time, but aim for less sitting and more moving.
  4. Community: Surround yourself with people who are fitter than you, who have already established the habits you wish to adopt. If you don’t have this, it makes it much more challenging to have lasting change.

There you have it. The not so secret secrets.

Executing this is, of course, the more challenging part and is what we strive to do at the Transformation Center and in our online program, Fit Moms for Life.

So remember, desperation isn’t bad, it can be the flammable ingredient to igniting your success.

Maybe you aren’t desperate yet but don’t want to get to that point before you take action. Desperation isn’t a requirement.

If this message has spoken to you, the next step I would like you to do is to schedule a free 20 min session with me where we dive deep into your goals and challenges and create a plan.

Cathy loses husband and purpose but finds it at the TC and drops 40 lbs

By | Fabulous Over 50, Fit and Fabulous Over 55, Health, Transformation Center

I pinch myself every day to have the opportunity to meet and hang around incredible humans who overcome so many obstacles.

I hope you will be inspired by Cathy’s story.

The one thing I want to point out from her story is that when she started, she could barely get to the ground or back up without help, but because we have incredible trainers here we are able to meet someone where they are and take them to where they want to be.

Here is Cathy in her own words:

January 2018 I was lost in my life. I lost my husband Mike to brain cancer June 23, 2017. Due to the stress over Mike’s illness and death I had gained all the weight that had taken me a year and a half to lose. I had knee surgery in December I needed to find a purpose in my life.  End of February I joined the Transformation Center and the 1 pm Fit over 50 small group personal training session.

I will not forget that first day when Dustin was there to help me get to the floor and show me how to get up. I still can’t believe how bad I really was that day. I could have given up but there was something about being there that helped me keep going.

I set a goal to be under 200 for my 60th birthday.  I missed my first goal by a week, but I did it. My next goal is to ride my bike in The Ride (to raise money for the UW Carbone Cancer Research Center) in honor of my husband Mike. The Ride is coming up this Sunday. I will do my best. A year ago I was 40 pounds heavier than I am today.

My final goal is to keep working out and to keep dropping weight and getting stronger, both physically and mentally.  I enjoy working out at the Transformation Center.

Erin has worked with me to get me to where I am today. He worked around my injuries and surgeries.  I get stronger every day and I am working towards getting strong enough to join the Killer Kurves group to prove to myself I can do it. I have 40 more pounds to hit my final weight goal but more importantly is for me to get stronger, and I know with the help of everyone at the Transformation Center I will meet that goal.

I gained 7 lbs…

By | Behavior Change, Lifestyle, Mindset

I shared this with one of my Fit over 50 small groups a week ago and they said they really appreciated me sharing so I thought I would share it with you.

Ironman for me was Sept 9th and since then I haven’t been exercising very consistently.

I have only done 5-6 runs of 4-6 miles, about 120 miles of biking, and a couple sessions of lifting and core.  Nothing much.

Part of it was planned to give my body some recovery from 8 months of averaging 15 hours a week of exercise (peaking the last three months closer to 20 hours a week), and part of it was that I went into full work mode, putting in big hours at the Transformation Center.

But those weeks turned to a month, and I was struggling to find myself again and figure out a consistent workout routine.

I gained about 7 lbs, lost some additional muscle. I felt flabby and just blah.

Each day that I didn’t work out became more frustrating, the guilt built up and it was even harder to start the following day.

I filled my days with non-productive things to fill the space that working out took up and it was a vicious cycle.

Can you relate?

I am happy to report I broke this cycle a week ago and logged 42 miles of running last week with 44 miles planned this week.

So what changed?

Here are a few thoughts, and things I did. I hope you can apply the principles into your own life.

-I said enough was enough. I was tired of feeling tired and stressed. I knew from past experience, exercise was one of the best things I could do for myself and for my family.

-I recommitted to my WHY.  I still want to work towards qualifying for the Ironman World Championships and in order to do that I need to improve my run massively.  This in itself is highly motivating for me.

-I hired a running-specific coach for the next 5 months to help guide me.

-I created a plan.  I am going to focus on my running this winter 5-6 days per week (along with strength and core) to work on my weakness, and I asked my coach for a specific run training plan.

-I made it as easy and convenient as possible.  My coach wants me to run on soft surfaces as much as possible to decrease the chance of injury.  Many of the go-to places aren’t close to my house, so I have been searching for the best running places that are close to where I live.

-I found running partners.  I am still in the process of figuring out the best fit, but I ran with 6 different people last week to figure out who and what times will work best for my life.

-I got  the right gear.  I will be spending quite a bit of time running this winter.  The last couple winters I got all the cold gear I will need, but I want to listen to church sermons when I run to strengthen that part of my life, so I needed headphones and a way to hold my phone.  I posted on FB asking for recommendations, and within 1 hour I had purchased what I needed to make my runs more enjoyable.

-I discussed the plan with Tessa to make sure she understands my why and will support me in it, by watching my son Bo when necessary.

-I listen to a running related podcast, video, book, or article each day to keep my mind fueled for this goal.

-I am enjoying the journey.  At first my mindset was that I have 5 months of “off season training” before I get to the fun stuff of training specifically for my triathlon races.  Almost like this was a means to an end or that the next 5 months would be torture but a necessary evil to reach the results I want come next summer. Instead, I am taking each day as it comes as it’s own wonderful experience.  I have been appreciating the little things like the colorful leaves under my feet or the cold biting winds that keep my body from overheating. I am trying to enjoy the journey since running isn’t something that comes naturally or that I love (I am starting to like it more though).

-Lastly, I have developed a strong visual belief in a positive future outcome.  The feeling of getting faster, and placing higher up in the races is very motivating for me and keeps me going.

Each person is motivated by different things, and there is no right or wrong when it comes to this as long as it works for you.

Has anyone told you that you have changed?

By | Behavior Change, Health, Lifestyle, Mindset

Change…

A word that society doesn’t seem to like or support.

A politician can’t change their views on a certain topic.

An expert in their field gets put down for changing their opinion on a specific theory or belief.

A family member gets chastised for no longer wanting to do the same unhealthy behaviors over and over.

A coworker becomes isolated for no longer wanting to join the rest for happy hour.

You can change for the better or worse, but I want to focus on positive changes.

Growing or evolving are words I think of when it comes to positive change.

Why is it that most people around you will do everything they can to prevent you from evolving?

In most cases I believe it is because it shines a light on their own life and reminds them that they are still dealing with the same crap they have been dealing with a decade prior.

Evolving can be a lonely road.

That is one of the biggest reasons why making healthy changes isn’t as hard as keeping those healthy changes up for a lifetime.

We have a dozen different anchors (society, family, certain friends, jobs) that keep pulling us down.

How do we combat this?

We need to distance ourselves and drop some of those anchors in our life.

We also need to put on additional life vests.

What do I mean by that?

We need to fill our life with certain people, books, podcasts, courses, and communities that are all striving to evolve together and support each other in that process.

So if you are feeling lonely in your journey to evolving to a fitter, healthier, and happier person, you must start to cut some of your anchors and find a community or two of people who would like to hand you a life vest and do life together in an ever evolving way.

How does sun and sand sound come mid January? You are invited…

By | Adventure

How does sun and sand sound come mid January? You are invited…

 I know it doesn’t seem right to be talking about the cold winter yet, but in the Midwest at least, it is only a few months away.

I personally enjoy the snow and cold weather, but also miss the warm sunshine beating down on my face.

My wife Tessa and I would like to invite you to the 4th year of hosting a fitness cruise in the Caribbean (Tessa’s first). 

It has been a handful of years since I last did one, and we are so excited to invite you for 7 nights of incredible food, weather, people, exercise, entertainment and fun.

Click here to check it out ->->

We have partnered up with one of the finest cruise lines (Norwegian) and have selected one of the greatest and newest ships in the entire world right now (The Norwegian Escape).

Imagine for a moment waking up to a warm, humid sea breeze. You put on your workout clothes and head to the top deck to take part in a fun workout that all ability levels are able to succeed at led by Tessa and me.

After an invigorating 45 ish minute workout and stretch we head down together to one of the 25 restaurants on the ship to enjoy a healthy breakfast of fresh goodness.

Next, we talk about the day and the various activities people are planning on taking part in and either group up for activities or do something on your own. After a full day of fun on the ship or at on one of the islands, we meet back together for an incredible dinner and then catch one of the amazing evening shows.

This sounds awesome! But it sounds expensive. 

Because we are able to get a group rate we are able to offer this cruise for an incredible value of less than $160/day which includes your food, ultimate beverage package, entertainment, room, taxes, workouts, etc.

Pretty awesome huh?

Click here to check it out ->->

We have limited spots available though, so head over to the web page we created and take a look at more of the details and reserve your spot.

As long as you are cool, you qualify for this trip. Usually I have only met half of the guests prior to coming on the ship, so invite your friends, share with your family and let’s create some memories that last a lifetime.

Keep moving,

Dustin and Tessa Maher

PS: The ship will only allow us to reserve a certain number of rooms before they get “released” after which this special price is no longer guaranteed. So don’t waste time, check your schedule and make the necessary arrangements.

Life Lessons on My 34th Birthday…

By | Uncategorized
Life Lessons on My 34th Birthday…

Holy smokes, where did time go?  It feels like just yesterday I was 20 years old and getting certified as a personal trainer. I have tried to take a step back, take a few deep breaths, and think about a couple of life lessons I have learned over the past decade post college.  I will break it up into a couple different categories.

 

Training Client Lessons:

Weight loss is less about calories in and calories out, and more about the state of mind of the individual and their environment.  In other words, it has more to do with the thoughts in their head, their beliefs about themselves, the friends they choose to have, and the small daily choices they make.

Exercise and eating healthy has to be done consistently.  I am amazed at how quickly we can gain weight, lose strength, reduce energy, etc by eating poor and moving less.  Consistency trumps nearly every other variable.

Who their friends, family, and coworkers are means so much.  If I have a client who has an unhealthy (define that however you want) family that they live with (spouse especially), unhealthy friends (or lack of friends), and a low morale/unhappy work environment, it is going to be nearly impossible to see lasting change unless something changes in some of these areas of their life.  Social belonging and mimicking is so strong and powerful.

For people in their 50s, 60s, 70s, and beyond, strength training and interval cardio is the best drug we can give anyone to have youthfulness.  It’s important for everyone, but it becomes ESSENTIAL as we age.

Show me someone who is committed and I will show you someone who will see a massive transformation.  100% commitment is essential.  This doesn’t mean 100% perfection, but it means that despite obstacles and barriers, their motto is keep moving forward and overcoming.

 

Business Lessons:

Never stop learning, adapting, and changing.  If I still had only our bootcamp programs like 3-7 years ago, I would be out of business right now.  We must continue to improve, evolve, and grow.

I can’t do everything.  For the first 5 years of my career it was mostly me doing everything.  It worked for awhile, but not only did it become unsustainable, it limited the growth and how many and how well we could serve people.  Plus it built up a lot of additional stress in my life.

It’s not about me.  It’s about you.  While I hope to lead by example and share my successes and flaws with you, it really isn’t about me, it’s about you.  How can we help you reach your goals faster, better, and with more joy and happiness?

Similarly, the TC isn’t my gym, it’s our gym.  I still feel the pressure to be here 70 plus hours a week to see all our clients each and every day, but I have realized that again it’s not about me, its about you, our incredible community, and our awesome staff.  If I am not around 24/7 it will still run smoothly, assuming our systems are in place.  This has taken a tremendous amount of stress and worry off of me, but it is still a work in progress.  I struggle with guilt a lot. =)

Have the best staff, treat them as well as possible, and make the work environment meaningful, healthy, and positive.  I look forward to finding more and more ways to make it even better.

There will be many hard and lonely days, but with a positive attitude, great support, and a strong work ethic, good days lay ahead.  I believe owning a fitness business is one of the hardest businesses in the world to run.  I won’t go into all the reasons why, but it is SO hard, which is why the average fitness business goes out of business in less than 2 years.  While it is extremely difficult, I don’t know of a more rewarding and meaningful line of work to do.

Change is a good thing but can suck in the short term.  Losing our building last year unexpectedly caused a lot of stress and challenges, but a year later it is clear that it was for the best.  We have a much nicer spot for our clients and staff, and we can’t ever get kicked out again.

It’s ok to be scared.  Similar to the above paragraph, this has been a scary year financially.  Besides investing a large amount of money over the past decade into hiring coaches and teachers to teach me, I live a very simple low cost life.  This year, I went over $1.3 Million into debt to be able to see the Transformation Center become a reality and to purchase our small home.  Getting out of our comfort level is when massive growth can occur in all areas of our life.  I have over 18 employees/team members that expect a check each month to support their families.  While it is super scary, it is also very rewarding and I don’t take it lightly.

Have a plan, but be willing to adapt.  If you would have told me 5 years ago that our Fit over 50 program would be our largest program and that we would be having as many men joining as women, I wouldn’t have believed it. But things evolve and we become clearer on what we do best as we listen to feedback.  It’s been so awesome to see how things evolve.

 

Marriage and Relationships:

I am pretty new to the whole married thing (6 months) so my lessons here aren’t very many yet.

Marry your best friend.  If you love spending time with that person, it will make it much easier to spend the rest of your life with them.

Make sure you have similar beliefs on the most important things in life.  For me this is our Christian beliefs, our desire to have 3-5 kids, consistently eating healthy and exercising, high level of positive attitude, and unwavering belief in one another.

There are things you must give up/sacrifice.  Just like most great things in life, if you want it, you must change or do things differently.  Single life was awesome and I am grateful for the decade of adulthood I got to spend in that stage of life. There are many things that go along with that lifestyle that I can’t do now, but that is ok because it opens up even more amazing experiences.

Communication and expectations are key.  Generally it isn’t what you did that necessarily was the problem, it was that it wasn’t communicated properly or at all and didn’t meet the other person’s expectations.  Tessa doesn’t get upset at me if I am 15 minutes late for dinner, she is upset if I don’t let her know that I am going to be 15 minutes late for dinner. 🙂

 

My own health, fitness, and life lessons:

Life is fragile and can’t be taken for granted.  Duh… We all know it but until it hits you personally, it is hard to fully grasp.  In the past 5 years, I lost both of my grandmas, who I was very close with, my mom, my mother-in-law, brother-in-law, sister-in-law, and almost lost my 24 year old brother to a stroke, along with many other friends and former clients getting very sick or dying.

There is more to us than our bodies and here on earth.  Here is where we may disagree and that’s cool!  But for me I believe we are a Spirit being and live in our temporary bodies, but when our bodies die here on earth our Spirit (which is who I really am) will spend eternity in Heaven with Jesus if we choose.  This belief and relationship not only helps me get through tough times throughout my day, it also causes me no fear of death.  I don’t want to die yet, I feel like I have a lot to still experience and give here on earth, but if I were to get hit by a truck today while biking and die, I don’t fear it.

Don’t limit your potential, and take inventory of the dialogue going on in your head.  I won’t spend too much time on this because I have written many times about it, but I got into triathlons and Ironman 18 months ago because I found it to be something that I initially didn’t believe I could do.

I had many stories I told myself, like I can’t swim, my knees are too bad to run, I am not an endurance person etc.  I realized these stories weren’t really making me a better person and were preventing me from realizing my potential.

It wasn’t until my mom’s unexpected death kicked me in the butt that I was ready to commit.

Committing doesn’t mean you know the path, or have all the answers.  Committing only means you are going to figure it out one step at a time.

Simple is more… I have been getting into the minimalist movement just a little bit.  Nothing too extreme, and it has become harder now that I have a house, but I’m not buying things for the sake of buying them. Rather I’m asking if this is something that brings me joy or happiness or reduces my pain.  If I can’t answer that with yes, I generally won’t buy it.

Less stuff means fewer things that break or need fixing, fewer things to lose, less space needed for storage, and fewer decisions you need to make, plus more money to spend on the things that really matter in life.

Lastly, be diligent about what you let your eyes see, and your ears hear.  Whatever you allow to be inputted will greatly affect you, even if you don’t realize it.

I personally chose to limit time spent with Debbie Downers, gossipers, news media, and conversations over a minute that include too much complaining.  I also avoid most movies (I don’t really enjoy them), but I definitely avoid any movie that includes violence or other very graphic scenes.

Instead, I choose to watch/listen to inspirational stories of people overcoming obstacles, good things that are happening in the world, and all the exciting changes that are progressing society.

I spend time with people who smile a lot, are driven and passionate, see the glass not half full but overflowing, and believe that anything is possible.

Thank you so much for reading this and investing a few minutes of your day.  Feel free to share with me some of your life lessons.  We can all learn from each other.

Keep moving,

Dustin

 

A Sample Day of Healthy Eating for Me

By | Uncategorized

A Sample Day of Healthy Eating for Me

I get asked all the time what I eat. Somehow people think I am this perfect angel who only eats kale, organic berries, and triple purified water.

While I would say I do eat pretty well, I live by the 10-20% moderation rule where I am ok not eating well for a small % of the week’s meals.

So ice cream once a week, maybe a frozen pizza—it’s not the end of the world. But for most meals, I eat real and eat clean.

Here is a sample day’s worth. I will preface this by saying this isn’t what I am currently doing, since I am training 15 plus hours a week for Ironman so my calories and carb needs are much higher now. I might have what is below but will eat larger portions or include more carbs with the meals.

This would be more for a typical pre-tri diet where I am only exercising 4-6 hours a week:

Breakfast: 6 whole local free range eggs, cooked in about a tablespoon of coconut oil, scrambled with a cup or two of veggies. Possibly an apple or some berries if it is a big workout day.

Snack or post-workout: Smoothie at the TC made with frozen berries, whey protein, almond milk, and our hydrolyzed collagen.

Lunch: Huge salad with dark leafy greens. Protein would be chicken usually but could be steak or fish. Fats would be olive oil and vinegar with some slivered almonds or other nuts.

Snack: String cheese, a natural (non-nitrate) local beef stick. Possibly a handful of raw nuts if still hungry.

Dinner: Protein (different than lunch) so it might be fish, beef, chicken, or something else. Will have at least one main non-starchy vegetable. Asparagus has been a favorite lately, but brussels sprouts with a tiny amount of bacon has been another favorite. Low carb is important in the evenings unless you are exercising hard at night.

Water intake is about a gallon and I do my best to spread it out throughout the day.

For women, reducing portion size by about 30% is probably best.

These are very general guidelines but I hope that gives you an idea of an ideal eating day with the combinations of fats, proteins, and carbs.

The more you can avoid:

-Alcohol
-Fruit juices
-Enriched wheat anything
-Vegetable oils (canola, soy, etc)
-Added sugars
-Processed products

The much healthier, leaner, and more energetic you will be.

Keep moving,
Dustin Maher

Your Body Doesn’t Care What Season It’s In…

By | Uncategorized

Your Body Doesn’t Care What Season It’s In…

This marks my 12th year as a fitness professional and with that comes a lot of experience and trends that I see in people’s attitudes and beliefs.

In the Midwest at least, we have 4 distinct seasons, which affect people’s activity levels and beliefs around those different seasons.

During the winter months of cold and dark I hear excuses like, “It’s too cold to go workout… It’s too hard to get up when it’s dark out to exercise… There are too many holiday parties that sidetrack my fitness…”

Then there is the spring… “It is getting nicer outside so I don’t want to workout inside… I have spring break trips planned… It is the end of the school year and there are so many activities I need to go to…”

For the summer months… “It is way too nice to be inside working out… I am going on a summer vacation… The kids are out of school… I get enough exercising doing lawn work and gardening… I like to walk or go on hikes…”

In the fall I find the excuses are less, and the damage done from the past 9 months is motivation enough for some to start looking at their exercise and nutrition habits, but still there are many excuses.

You get the point.

Your body craves eating real food and engaging in regular strength training and cardio.
It doesn’t care what season it is.

Consistency is king.

That is why there is no “good time” to start. The best day to start was yesterday, and the second best day is today.

This reminds me of getting ready to jump into the pool for swim practice. I know it is good for me, I know I need to do it, but I know the momentary “cold” that I will feel when my body submerges into the water is uncomfortable.

But once I jump in and have those 5 seconds of discomfort, I am acclimated and good to go.

So if you have found yourself making continual excuses, do yourself and those you love a favor, and jump in with both feet and commit.

Keep moving,

Dustin Maher

Does Fear Prevent You From Starting/Reaching Your Goals?

By | Uncategorized

Does Fear Prevent You From Starting/Reaching Your Goals?

I posted this on FB, but I wanted to go into a little bit more depth. Over the past three weeks, I have spoken with close to 150 people who have considered committing to our Killer Kurves 12 week lifestyle transformation program, which just happens to cause people to lose a lot of weight in the process.

To qualify, a person must need to lose 40-200 lbs of fat, and for many, committing to the program is one of the scariest things they could ever think to do.

Fortunately, we have 97 people who are going to face those fears and start our 12 week program.

So many let fear and other excuses rob them of their Transformation, and 6 months from now they will be in the same situation or even worse.

Wish you could commit to things despite fear?

Click here to watch a short but entertaining video with Will Smith

He shares a powerful story about skydiving. We both share a similar belief about fear and it is why I believe everyone should skydive at least a couple times in their life. It is extremely empowering and transformational.

I wish I had a magic formula for you to use to overcome fear and commit, but I don’t.

Nike has it right… Just do it.

Some of the most magical and memorable moments in my life came when I felt a lot of fear but just did it.

Here are a couple that come to mind over the past few years…
-Proposing at the finish of Ironman
-Skydiving
-Going 7 figures into debt to invest in the building for the Transformation Center
-Signing up for Ironman
-Taking my first swim lesson
-Speaking in front of hundreds of people
-Bungee drop
-Asking a girl I had a huge crush on out on a date
-Traveling alone to Africa
-Committing to do a fitness model runway show
-Going 50 plus mph on my tri bike

The list could continue to go on but in all these situations I had a pit in my stomach and in some cases got sick to my stomach. Once you make the commitment and take that step, you find the only regret is that you didn’t do it sooner.

Keep moving,
Dustin Maher

A heart-felt message to you…

By | Transformation Center

A heart-felt message to you…

I write this letter with as much passion and conviction as anything I have ever written before.

At the Transformation Center, we have 4 distinct programs. Each program is different in many ways, but similar too.

Each supports a person just a little bit differently and creates mini communities that are able to bond and connect with one another to meet each person where they are at in their stage of life and goals.

No program is better than another…

Fit over 50 may have a small group personal training structure, but is no better than Sweat Fit (bootcamp) – it’s just different.

Sweat Fit/Fit Moms classes incorporate more high impact jumping activities, but that doesn’t make them any better than Fit over 50 or K2.

K2 offers an extra layer of support for participants, who sit down and chat for 20-30 minutes after each session. It is no better than Fit over 50 or Sweat Fit because of this. It is just a potentially better fit for some people.

Fit Moms provides FREE childcare, but is no better than the other programs because of this.

You get the point.

I completed an Ironman, but I am no better or more accomplished than the 55 year old woman who shows up for her first workout at the TC, even though her husband recently left her and she is 75 lbs overweight, has struggled with depression and anxiety much of her life, hasn’t had any meaningful exercise in over 20 years, and is scared out of her mind, but she shows up anyways.

In fact, in my mind she is the hero… Not me.

So there is no such thing at the TC as “graduating” to another program. Each program is beautiful and powerful in it’s own way and we as a staff will continue to mold and modify the programs to improve the results and experience for our clients.

There might be a program that someone could fit in better with, but switching doesn’t mean they have “graduated.”

My dream and prayer for our society, when it comes to health and fitness, is one where we realize we are all on our own journey, and all that matters is that we keep moving forward on that journey to the best of our abilities. We can help encourage and support each other in that constant progression of improvement.

If you aren’t connected to the TC and want to be part of a community that supports and looks after one another, and you are READY for an incredible physical (and emotional) transformation, then email me at dustin@dustinmaherfitness.com and I will chat with you and see if one of our 4 programs is a good fit for you.

If we aren’t a good fit I will recommend you to someone else.

Fair enough?

Keep moving,
Dustin

How Stephanie dropped 27.6 lbs in 12 Weeks and Went from 0 Pushups to 12

By | Killer Kurves

How Stephanie dropped 27.6 lbs in 12 Weeks and Went from 0 Pushups to 12

Today, I want to share with you a story I just received from one of our Killer Kurves participants who just finished her first 12 week session and will be starting a second session next week.

Her story is so common. She lost part of her identity when she became a mom. This is the same thing that many women find who get heavily involved in their career. Finding themselves again is the least selfish thing they can do for their loved ones.

I am so proud of Stephanie and can’t wait to see what the next 12 weeks bring her.

“Before the Transformation Center, I pretty much defined myself as a Mom. Not that that is a bad thing, but I didn’t know who I was outside of being a mom anymore. From the second my daughter was born, she was my main priority. I lost all my baby weight plus more while I was breastfeeding. Then as soon as I went back to work and starting eating normal again it all came back plus some. My daughter turned two at the beginning of February and the only kind of working out I’ve done since she was born has been trying to keep up with her. Granted, chasing a two year old around can be exhausting!

Slowly over the last two years since I’ve had my daughter I started losing myself. If you asked me who I was my first thought would be to answer a mom. I’m much more than a mom but I let myself get consumed in always putting her above everything else including my health and well being. I would opt out of going to events or social functions because I didn’t want to spend time away from her. I work 32-35 hours a week and felt like the times I wasn’t working I needed to be with her.

It took me being away from home on a girl’s getaway to realize how unhappy I was with myself mentally and physically. It wasn’t just about my weight–I was allowing my fears and emotions of being a mom keep me from living a healthier and happier life.

I got home from my vacation and was scrolling through Facebook when an Ad for the Killer Kurves program at the Transformation Center was in my news feed. I commented on the post with a question and within minutes Dustin messaged me asking if we could talk about the program. After we talked, Dustin suggested I look at the website and watch the video and get signed up if I wanted to join. I was excited, scared and nervous all at the same time. The program was starting 4 days later and I didn’t know if I could do it. Walking into the center that day I felt my anxiety kick in. Will everyone be staring at me and see how out of shape and over weight I am? Will I even be able to do the exercises they want me to do? I went and did the exercises, although I can’t say I did them well!

Each week I felt stronger and stronger until I sprained the ligaments in my left foot during a class. I was so upset because I had finally started feeling like I was in the groove and making progress. Part of me wanted to quit because I didn’t know how long I would be limited. I decided I would at least try and go back to class and do whatever exercises I was able to. All the trainers at the TC were wonderful with coming up with different modifications for exercises I couldn’t do. During this time I really had to focus on what I was putting in my body since I wasn’t able to work out as hard.

This program is much more than a workout. It’s a community where everyone supports you and cheers you on. No one judges you or makes you feel unwelcome. After your workout you gather in a group setting and talk about different items each week. From nutrition to emotional eating and to learning how to love yourself the way you are. One of the biggest things I have taken away is that you can’t be perfect with your eating or working out all the time. Sometimes life gets in the way and all you have the option to eat is a cheeseburger. It’s about learning how to make heathier choices and to allow yourself a “cheat” day or meal every once in a while and to be ok with it. Just try and get back on as soon as you ca n! I would suggest this program to anyone who is looking for a judgement free zone with support and guidance on working out and making healthier choices.”

I’ve lost 27.6 Pounds and 16 inches.

Fitness Test week one:
500M Row – 2 minutes 19 seconds
Squats – 50 in 60 seconds
Push Ups to fatigue – 27 on my knees

Fitness Test week 12:
500M Row – 1 minute 56 seconds
Squats – 61 in 60 seconds
Push Ups to fatigue – 12 on my toes with an additional 25 on my knees

Great job Steph! If you can relate to any part of her story and not only want to lose weight (this is just a by-product of living a healthier more active life), but if you want to rediscover who you are and who you want to become, this K2 program is so much more than just an exercise program.

< Click Here to Watch the Video Steph was Referring to >