Category

Health

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.

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.

Our Top Two Tips to Make Healthy Eating Easy!

By | Health, Kids nutrition, Nutrition

I like to give all of our new clients my top two super-simple, healthy-eating tips, as it is true that you cannot “out-exercise” a bad diet.

The key to healthy eating is to make it as easy and simple as possible. These two “rules” are my top two tips to simplify healthy eating for good. I promise if you can do these two things consistently, you will automatically avoid the foods that are making you fat, sick and unhealthy!

Rule # 1 – Eat what your great grandma ate!

Think about it. The more processed the food item, usually the worse it is for you—higher in fat, sugar, and hard to pronounce additives, preservatives, colorings and other chemicals, while lower in actual nutrients.

Your great grandma did not eat foods with labels containing 20+ ingredients! She ate real food. Meat, fruit, vegetables, and baked goods made with just a handful of real ingredients. If you fill your plate with real, whole foods—foods that came from a farm, not a factory—you will automatically avoid most of the crap that is hiding in our food these days.

Plus, your great grandma did not cook with canola oil, corn oil, or any of the other “healthy” vegetable oils that are in almost everything today. She cooked with butter and lard.

You may be thinking “heart attack” when you read that, but it turns out good old-fashioned butter and lard (from pasture raised animals), along with coconut oil and high quality olive oil, are much better for your heart than vegetable oils.

As it turns out, processed vegetable oils (corn, soy, canola, grapeseed, safflower, etc) are not that good for you. They cause inflammation in the body and are now suspected by many researchers to be a primary contributor to heart disease.

In addition, it takes a LOT of processing to turn a rapeseed into canola oil, corn into corn oil, etc. They must use solvents to extract the fats and then must treat the resulting oil extensively to make it palatable, adding preservatives and even “de-odorizers”.

The bottom line is that you are better off eating the healthy natural fats that people of your great grandma’s generation ate in different parts of the world: avocados, nuts, coconut oil, butter, lard (grass-fed), and olive oil (cold applications only—don’t cook with olive oil!).

So Rule #1—eat a low CRAP diet, not a low-fat diet, by eating real, whole unprocessed foods and healthy fats, as your great grandma would have. If you can eat this way 80% of the time, you will feel more satisfied, reduce inflammation, and give your body the nutrients it needs to stay healthy!

Rule #2—Never eat carbs alone!

The essence of this rule is to always eat protein with your carbs and vice versa. Your body needs carbs for energy. But it’s better for your blood sugar, your energy levels and your hormonal balance to never eat them alone.

When you eat a meal or snack of just carbohydrates (ie bread, crackers, pasta, fruit, vegetables, sweets, milk, flavored yogurts, soda, juice) your blood sugar rises quickly, as does your energy. Your body quickly produces insulin and other hormones to convert excess sugar to fat to store it and get it out of the bloodstream. Before long, your blood sugar crashes and you feel sluggish and tired, and you are usually craving more carbs. So you eat more carbs, repeating the cycle. Repeating this cycle too often leads to insulin resistance and type 2 diabetes, along with lots of inflammation in the body.

The solution to this is to balance your protein and carbs at every meal and snack. When you eat protein with carbs, it slows the absorption of sugar into the bloodstream, prevents a big blood sugar spike (and the following spike in insulin), and provides you with energy that lasts. Your hunger is controlled, you avoid cravings and you have more energy. Worth it, right?

If you can follow these two basic eating strategies, you will feel better, have more energy, and get your cravings under control… making healthy eating easier than ever before.

So remember:

  • Eat what great grandma ate;
  • Never eat carbs alone.

This is How You Should Eat to Lose Weight and Have More Energy!

By | Health, Nutrition, Uncategorized

Recently, our naturopathic nutritionist, Tracie Fountain, came to the Transformation Center and shared, to a packed crowd of well over 100 of our clients, how you should eat to reduce joint pain, improve body fat loss, and have more energy.12088077_807193786058243_1183807333470083040_n

This information isn’t general knowledge and isn’t what is being talked about in the media or in most doctor’s offices yet.

We recorded this event for you and I can’t encourage you enough to invest the hour in your education.  Tracie provides an incredible amount of actionable steps to improving your nutrition.  Watch this as soon as you can, you will never look at food the same way.

Click to watch on YouTube ->-> https://www.youtube.com/watch?t=34&v=QTl4hbbdIL8

The video and audio isn’t quite professional but it is plenty good to get the content.

Click to watch on YouTube ->-> https://www.youtube.com/watch?t=34&v=QTl4hbbdIL8

Due to the overwhelming positive response of Tracie’s presentation, Tracie will be back this month for a presentation called STRESS-LESS which will go over practical nutritional and lifestyle hacks to deal with the stress we all have in our lives.

STRESS-Less (1)

Spaces are limited if you want to attend in person at the Transformation Center.

->-> Click here to register for the in-person FREE event. ->->

If you can’t make it to Madison, then we will be live streaming it so you can follow along with us anywhere in the world.

->-> Click here to register for the live online event. <-<-

Nutrition and stress are two of the biggest factors in the quality of our lives, unfortunately there is so much misinformation out there.  Once you can manage these areas, your quality of life will dramatically improve.

Keep moving,

Dustin Maher

  1. The nutritional information shared on the video is quite controversial but more and more doctors and the media are starting to realize that it is the right way to eat for most people. Invest the hour and watch it now.

Jillian Michaels Just Kicked My Butt in Chicago… Then I Disagreed with Her!

By | Behavior Change, Fabulous Over 50, Health, Killer Kurves, Lifestyle, Nutrition, Uncategorized
This weekend, 7 trainers from the Transformation Center went to MidwestMania, a large fitness conference in Chicago, designed to help us become better trainers and coaches. (A huge thank to our trainers, Ashton, Joe & Ryan, that stayed behind and kept our classes going!)

(From left, back row: Monique, Dustin, Liz, Michelle, Erin; front row: Shelley, Tessa)

This was the 4th  year I have taken a team of trainers there and it was a great time to learn more ways to safely exercise, more ways to use food to burn fat, and learn the latest science on fat burning, aging well, and improving fitness.

Jillian Michaels from the TV show, The Biggest Loser, kicked our butts in an intense 30-minute workout and shared some of her advice on staying fit with kids, a crazy career, and everything else.

She said, “There are seasons in our lives when you have to be ok with “good enough.”  You should always be striving for improvement but at times in your life you can’t strive for perfection and if you have done your best you need to be ok with that.”

I really liked that.

But…

There was a controversial moment in Jillian’s keynote and that came when a trainer asked about her menopausal clients and how it seems harder for them to lose weight and what Jillian thinks about women in that demographic. I am paraphrasing what Jillian said, but basically she said that losing fat is losing fat whether you are 20 or 60. It requires you to eat less and move more.  Then she gave examples like Madonna (58), Jane Fonda (80), and Helen (mid 50s) from Season 7 of Biggest Loser. She basically said it is in menopausal women’s heads that they can’t lose weight.

This certainly didn’t settle well with the hundreds of menopausal trainers in the audience. In one respect, I do get Jillian’s point.  She is saying we can’t use age as an excuse and that we need to exercise intensely more than ever as we age and eat the right foods and we must get enough sleep, manage stress the best we can, and eliminate toxic people from your life.

I 100% agree with this.

But…

I spent much of the past 3 days in lectures and workouts focusing on menopausal women’s issues and there are distinct challenges and issues that occur when your body dramatically reduces its estrogen production and eliminates progesterone secretion. So my response back to Jillian would be:

“Jillian, you are right, we can’t use age as an excuse why we can’t exercise at a very intense level and eat healthy food and lose weight, BUT fat gain happens MUCH EASIER after menopause, particularly in women’s stomach areas.”

Is it impossible to lose fat after menopause?  Of course not!  You just need to employ some additional strategies and small habits into your life that you maybe didn’t have to have during your 20s, 30s, and 40s to stay the same size. In Madison, we have become the undisputed leader in training/coaching menopausal women and beyond in both our Fit over 50 small group training program and Killer Kurves.

We are able to get our clients in their 50s, 60s and 70s to lose weight, build strength, and dramatically improve their cardio/energy by employing some specific strategies that most women aren’t currently doing including what we are eating. Our nutritionist, Tracie Fountain, will be with us this Tuesday night to share what specific foods you should EAT and AVOID to reduce inflammation and joint pain and reduce body fat.

If you are within driving distance of Madison, you need to attend this free event. RSVP here ->->https://fitmomsforlife.leadpages.co/nutrition101/

If you are out of state, we are planning on live streaming it (assuming technology cooperates) and you can register for the live stream here ->->http://app.webinarjam.net/register/7802/cfa70b59d5

Are you 50 or older?

My trainers and I have opened up some additional times in the earlier morning, midday, and later afternoon for small group training and we also have a handful of spots remaining in our Killer Kurves (for any age if you have 30 or more pounds to lose) coaching program, which starts in just over a week.

->-> Click here to fill out a short interest form and I will call you up to discuss your goals. <-<-

In a few days, I will be sharing with you what I learned about losing fat after menopause.  This is SO important to do if you are in that stage of life, and SO important to start to do if you are in your 30s or 40s, because if you start doing these things now, you won’t be in for such a rude awakening.

[LIVE EVENT] Answers to your most-asked nutrition questions!

By | Balance, Health, Healthy Snacks, Lifestyle, Nutrition, Uncategorized
“Should I go gluten-free?”  I get this question a lot from clients.  

We are excited to be able to answer this and your other most-asked nutrition questions in a live, free event with FM4L nutritional consultant Tracie Fountain, next Tuesday, September 29 at 7 PM. See below for more info and how to register (for both in-person and online broadcast access).

Going gluten-free is certainly popular right now and it’s true that many people may benefit significantly. But it’s also a massive market and many of the “healthy” gluten-free products out there now may be worse for you than the bread you were trying to avoid! If you want to try going gluten-free, go for a whole-foods based diet and cook things yourself, rather than relying on gluten-free processed foods.

Here are a handful of delicious gluten-free breakfast ideas:

Two ingredient pancakes

Protein waffles (use gluten-free oats)

Quinoa breakfast bowl

Gluten-free spinach strata

We are excited to be able to offer you the chance to learn more about healthy nutrition in general in a live event next week. Our awesome nutritional consultant, Tracie Fountain, is coming in to talk about how foods can heal your body, increase your metabolism and balance your blood sugar.

This popular Nutrition 101 presentation will take place Tuesday, September 29 at 7PM Central, at the Fit Moms Transformation Center—202 South Gammon Road, Madison WI.

→Click here to reserve your FREE spot, as this event always fills to capacity←

For those of you not local to Madison, we are excited to be able to offer you a LIVE broadcast of this event!

→Click here to reserve your spot for the online broadcast←


We look forward to seeing you next week!

Dustin

PS  If you are in the Madison area, we urge you to try to make it to the live event to be able to ask questions and participate more easily (…and also avoid potential technical issues with the live stream!)

Click here to RSVP to the in person event!

Click here to register for the online broadcast.

Lessons learned from having my engine blow up on the interstate

By | Body Assessment, Fit Moms for Life Pledge, Health, Killer Kurves, Mindset, Mothers, Uncategorized

This past weekend, I had planned on going home to see my family.  My sister was flying in from Colorado and it was going to be the first time we were all together since my mom’s unexpected death. On my drive from Madison to Minnesota, my car started to act up and it got bad.  I pulled over and my car was smoking and it wouldn’t start.  I got a tow into Tomah and got the news my engine blew up and I would need a new engine.

After everything I have gone through this summer, between my mom and my brother’s stroke, this news didn’t even really phase me.  I just smiled and said, “ok”. At this point, I could have been stubborn and told the garage to fix it no matter the cost. I could have rented a car and drove to Minnesota to see my family and then kept the rental car for the next 10 days while they repaired my car.

CarBut I did something I am trying to do more often when I feel like I could use it… I asked for help. I posted on Facebook asking if anyone had a flat bed trailer or any connections to a local mechanic near where I broke down. I received a message from a guy I have never met but spoke with on the phone and he recommended a mechanic friend that was about 20 miles from me. Next, I called my dad and he hunted down a good used engine to replace mine.  Then, I had to figure out how to get the remaining three hours to MN to see my family.

One of my awesome clients, Karen, just happened to be leaving Madison in the morning and agreed to pick me up on her way and bring me back on Sunday.  I spent Friday night in a little motel that I am pretty sure was rented out by the hour. 🙂

On my way back to Madison, I received a call and a guy had a nice Lexus SUV waiting for me in Sparta, the town where my car was now getting fixed, and I could have the SUV for as many weeks as needed.

The lesson I want to remind you of is, don’t be afraid to ask for help.  Yes, we should be a person that is constantly trying to add to the world and not take away, but sometimes life throws us curveballs and humbly asking for help is the best thing we can do for ourselves AND it also allows others to be blessed by helping out.

Bringing it back to fitness and health, it is ok to admit that you haven’t been successful on your own. You haven’t failed.  You aren’t a bad person.  It just wasn’t the right fit. You might need more structure or community, that’s all! I am here to help if you need it.

If you really want to join one of my training programs in Madison, but can’t quite afford the entire membership investment, we are still taking applications for my mom’s scholarship. ->-> Click here to apply <-<  Send an e-mail to dustinmaherfitness@gmail.com with a little background and your goals and I can recommend a program I think is best for you.

If you are in the Madison area and looking to lose 40 or more pounds and get personally coached by trainers who have lost 50-150 lbs themselves, then Killer Kurves is the program for you.  Our next 12 week session starts Oct 5thand we have limited spots still available in our morning and evening classes. ->->  Click here <-<- to learn more and email me if you have questions.

Do you want to transform the lives of other women while changing your own more than you thought possible?  Do you want to build authentic, rewarding relationships, while getting increased accountability for your own journey?  Want to earn a little extra cash on the side? Join us THIS WEDNESDAY for a live webinar on what it means to be a Fit Moms for Life Leader–>Click here to register<– We are looking for a few women to help us change the lives of many others–we hope you join us!

#1 Thing to Get Yourself Motivated to Exercise and Eat Healthy

By | Challenge, Health, Lifestyle, Mindset, Uncategorized

“Know Thine Own Self…”

This is what has been rolling around in my head for the past few weeks. I decided a few weeks ago that I am going to do the Ironman next year.  Not only do I want to complete it, I want to finish in under 12 hours. The past few years I have dabbled with the idea of “someday,” but seeing my mom die so suddenly this summer and my 25-year-old brother suffering a stroke just 2 days later, I was acutely reminded that someday isn’t guaranteed.

This is a big step for me.  If you have been following me at all for the past 10 years, you know I have been VERY anti cardio and long distance activities and have very little background in it. Side note: I still don’t believe it is the best way to lose fat and tone up; strength training, interval training, and healthy eating is still best for that.

Some of you know also that I really HATE the water.  I am really good laying by the pool getting a tan or sitting in a boat watching others jump in but me getting in the water is another story. I can barely swim to save my life and participating in the Ironman will make me swim 2.4 miles while being kicked and hit by 2,500 other swimmers.

Why am I sharing this all with you?

On my own will or motivation I have NO DESIRE to practice and learn how to swim.  I also don’t have a strong desire to run long distances. I do LOVE to bike, but only with groups, not a big fan of riding alone. I also don’t know how to really TRAIN for an Ironman.

I am doing what I encourage you to do, which is to hire a coach. My coach is a professional Ironman athlete and also works with about 200 others to help them complete their first race or work towards turning pro.

Having my coach will:

  • Reduce the chances of injury
  • Make things more fun
  • Save me time researching best training programs, gear, and nutrition
  • Introduce me to others in the Madison community training for Ironman
  • Push me harder than I would push myself
  • Help me overcome stumbling blocks that will inevitably occur over the next year
  • Cheer me on during my successes and comfort and encourage me during my challenges
  • Help me reach my goals faster

Over the past 24 days, I have had 310 women, ages 50 and up, apply for our NEW small group training program.  I have spoken to over 200 of them on the phone and most have told me the same thing, which is, “I realize that I don’t seem to be motivated to do it on my own.  I know what to eat, and I know I should exercise more, but I just can’t seem to do it.” They say it like there is something wrong with them.  There is nothing wrong with you if you struggle with motivating yourself to exercise more and eat healthier.

Just like I don’t want to learn how to swim or run long periods of time, I know I need a coach to be there for me.

If you are in the Madison area and are interested in learning more about this unique program, here is the link to apply and after I receive your application, I will personally call you to set up a time for you to visit one of our classes.  Apply ->  https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/fitover50

If you live near an Ironman race, I can’t encourage you enough to go out and watch the swim start at 7 AM and then the finish line at the Capitol Square between 9pm and midnight.  You will shed some tears and be in awe. Ironman Wisconsin is in Madison on Sunday, September 13th.  Come join me at Monona Terrace at about 6:30 AM and watch one of the greatest sports spectacles.  If all goes as planned, one year from now I will be in that water ready for a day I will never forget.

Just in case you were trying to remember the rest of the quote above? This above all – to thine own self be true, and it must follow, as night follow days, thou canst not be then false to any man. ~ William Shakespeare

Good words to live by!

Join the 6 Week Challenge: “I’m entering the best decade of my life!”

By | Balance, Behavior Change, Fabulous Over 50, Health, Lifestyle, Six Week Challenge, Strength, Uncategorized
I talk to men and women everyday who tell me they wished they lived near Madison so they could participate in our programs. I wish everyone did but knowing that’s not possible is what led me to create the 6 Week Challenge.
I also get questions about whether it really works. It does! But you don’t have to take my word for it, read Kris’ story here:

234I’ve never been athletic. Phy Ed was the class I dreaded going to. I was blessed with a long lean body and fabulous metabolism. My mom prepared plenty of home cooked meals, but we also had plenty of processed food. It was a “normal” diet as that’s what everyone in my circle was eating.

I had my first child at the age of 25. Even though I gained nearly 50 pounds during the pregnancy, I lost it within the next few months. I maintained at 130 pounds and gained 30 pounds with my second child at the age of 28. And then, the battle for those last ten pounds began. With two kids and a full-time job there was no room for exercise let alone cooking a meal that didn’t contain at least one processed item.

Over the years I purchased the latest exercise equipment, the quick fix diet pills and plans, the latest videos. Many times I would lose the weight, but then it would creep back on and then some.

Memorial Day weekend 2012, two weeks before my 47th birthday, I decided I had enough. I was nearly 50 pounds overweight, my belly sat in my lap, no strength, no energy and I would get winded on a flight of stairs. I set a personal goal: To be in the best shape of my life by my 50th birthday. I’m hoping to have grandchildren someday and I want to be an active Grandma that can keep up with her grandchildren.

While surfing the net, an ad flashed on the screen with a picture of a woman holding out her jeans showing how much weight she had lost. I clicked on the ad and was taken to the Fit Mom’s for Life program. It was very intriguing as I had not seen a program that offered so much for Mom’s in the different stages of motherhood. And who was this good looking young man and why did he want to help me get into better health? I loved that he was located in the city I worked in. It made him real and trustworthy. No pills. Just honest to goodness commitment to exercise and clean eating. I ordered the DVD series. 12 DVDs for the next year and used them from the privacy of my own basement. When they arrived I started getting up earlier in the morning. You have to understand that I am NOT a morning person. This was definitely a challenge especially on those dark, cold winter mornings. I watched the nutritionist piece at the end of the first DVD and visited Tracie’s website. My sister and I went to her Nutrition 101 class. The awesome things we learned! I immediately started cleaning out my pantry and changing up my grocery list. There were very sad faces when I announced I would no longer be purchasing Poptarts. Guess what? Everyone is still living without Poptarts!

When they say 80% of your success is diet over exercise, they are speaking the truth. Start with your diet. Keep a food journal to teach yourself the macro’s of the food you are2 choosing. There are great on-line food journals that make this easy. Plan, plan, plan! Cook more chicken breasts than you will need for dinner so you have them for your salads. Make a big batch of steel-cut oats and portion it out for the week. I packed my lunch bucket with everything I planned to consume during the day and logged it immediately. I would then see how much room was left for the dinner I had planned. I could then adjust what was in my lunch pail to stay within my protein, fat and calorie goal. Over the course of a short couple of weeks I learned so much about food. My typical day is a protein smoothie for the commute into work. A couple of hours after I’m at work, I have breakfast  (2 eggs -hardboiled or scrambled in the micro, steel cut oats with almond milk and fruit, or a cup of greek yogurt with fruit). For lunch I have a salad. Mixed greens, a protein (usually chicken or salmon), fresh veges and a drizzling of homemade dressing. I have two favorites: Lime juice, minced garlic, pepper and olive oil or stone ground mustard and local honey. My afternoon snack is typically a piece of fruit with 12 almonds, or greek yogurt with cinnamon. My husband does not like many vegetables and the ones he likes are starchy, so I’ve learned to cook one he will eat and cook one for me for dinner. If you’ve never roasted vegetables, I highly recommend it. So flavorful with a bit of olive oil and your favorite seasoning. I chose lean proteins and we grill a lot. One food challenge I did was a two week raw food challenge. I was determined to give two weeks of my life to the program and be really brave and try the vegetables I had never tried before. It was an amazing experience. They were some I didn’t like and some I needed to acquire a taste for, but what an accomplishment to not eat one piece of cooked food for two weeks. The result was I discovered vegetables I would have never otherwise tried. I absolutely love beets now. I find myself asking what the fresh vege of the day is when we go out for dinner. So many amazing flavors when you train your taste buds to crave good clean foods.

I did fairly well sticking to a 5-6 morning a week workout. I would do the strength training one day and then the cardio and core the next. It didn’t take very long before I was putting aside the 5 and 10 pounds weights for 15’s and 20’s. I now own 25’s and 30’s as well. There were definitely periods of time where life interrupted and I got out of the daily habit, but I was feeling so good and losing weight and inches that I was encouraged to get back at it. I also set a goal to run in a 5K mud run eight months after starting the DVDs. I needed something out there that would keep me motivated. Remember how I said I’m not athletic? When I first started running, I couldn’t even run a block. How in the world would I run a 5K, in the mud, with obstacles. Each time I ran on our farm, I would pick a spot and will myself to run to it. I did that first mud run. Walked part of it, but completed it and it felt great. And I got to meet Dustin in person at that race. There have been a few more mud runs since and I can now run a full 5K without walking. What I discovered was the DVD workouts contributed to my running endurance more so than the once a week run I would do. Strengthen the body and everything improves.

23It wasn’t easy. There were many moments of wondering if it was worth it. But I can tell you, it was worth it. Even when I just didn’t want to do one more rep, it was worth it. I’m very proud of the fact I made my goal when I turned 50 this past June. Thirty-five pounds lost. Four dress sizes gone. The best was when I was hauling heavy buckets with my husband and he said, “You’ve got guns!”

My journey is not done. The difference between this time and all the other times is I made a life style change. I made my mind up that it was going to be hard work as I no longer have fabulous metabolism. I gave myself a realistic timeline to work towards my goal. I will not go back to eating the way I used too. My grocery cart is filled with fresh food. When I skip a day or three of exercising, I miss it. I’m told I look younger and honestly I feel many years younger. I truly believe I’ve entered my best decade yet.

You are never too old to take charge of your health and care for the one and only body the Good Lord gave you. Don’t expect a quick fix. Just start and take it one step at a time and one short-term goal at a time. Be that role model for your family. Be that physically fit, healthy Grandma so your grandchildren can make memories with you for many years to come.

Thank you, Kris, for sharing your inspiring story with us! You’ve worked so hard and I am thrilled that we are able to partner with you on your journey.

If you’d like to improve your health, eat better, move your body and live a more quality-filled life, please join the thousands of women (and men) who have joined the 6 Week Challenge. We’ve continued to make improvements to the program since Kris started and now everything (menus, recipes, videos, workouts and more) is available online but we still have hard copies of everything if that’s your preference. More information can be found here or email me with any questions and I or one of my staff will respond.

Get Fit and Help Support My Little Brother Who Just Had a Stroke

By | Fit Moms for Life Six Week Challenge, Health, Six Week Challenge, Strength, Transformation Center, Uncategorized

I want to first start by thanking each and every one of you who have shown incredible love and support to myself and my entire family over the past several days.  I feel so blessed and loved.  The Joy “Fit Moms” Maher Scholarship has raised over $9,000, which is just amazing along with the over 1,500 fb messages, emails, 150 plus cards, phone calls and texts that we’ve received.  Our family will get through this and you have a lot to do with it.
 
I can’t wait to start sharing with you more recipes, exercises and mindset information soon, but today isn’t that day.
 
I have kept it quiet with most everyone but my TC staff and a few close friends and family, but two days after my mom died, my littlest brother Eric, who lives in Madison, woke up without being able to control his eyes.  He was very dizzy, couldn’t walk and in a bad place.

Stroke

That day was spent in the ER where the doctors did many tests, including an MRI, but couldn’t figure out what was going on.  He was sent home and spent the next 3-4 days laying down with his eyes closed.  Miraculously, he was able to stand and function the day of the celebration of life for my mom. He seemed to be on the mend.
 
Two days ago, I received a call from him that his eyes were bad again and he had numbness and tingling down his left side of his body.  I had to help him walk to the car to take him to the ER. My dad immediately drove from MN to Madison to be with Eric and me.
 
To make a long story short, they just confirmed with another MRI that he had a stroke in his brain stem. Quite ironic, considering this is similar to what my mom died of.
 
Fortunately, this one is smaller, and we hope and believe he will make a full recovery.  The doctors (there have been many working on him in both MN and Madison) are shocked and confused why a seemingly healthy 25 year old would have a clot that would reach the brain stem and are definitely concerned as to what caused it.
 
My brother has been under so much stress and I know he is stressing over the large medical expenses he is racking up.  Fortunately, he has insurance but it is that high deductible kind.
 
My goal has always been to add 100X more value to your life than I would ever ask in return and I just asked for donations for my mom’s fitness scholarship so I don’t want to ask for donations again.
 
Instead, I want to offer you my #1 weight loss and lifestyle program, the FM4L 6 Week Challenge for $10 off and 90% of your investment will go directly to pay for his deductible and additional expenses, which I estimate to be at $5,000.

FM4L_Template3

This program has helped people from around the world lose weight, lead a healthier family, get stronger and overcome many health challenges. This program was very near and dear to my mom’s heart, in the early days of the program, she would personally call up each person who ordered it.
 
My goal over the next three days is to raise the $5,000 and surprise him when he leaves the hospital so that he doesn’t have to worry about the medical bills.
 
->-> Click here to learn more about the 6 week challenge. <-<-
 
Enter promo code: ERIC and receive the $10 off.
 
For those of you who don’t want/need the 6 week challenge but want to help Eric out, I have set up another GoFundMe page (I really hope this is the last one I need to set up) and you can donate there.  Besides the small fee they take, 100% will go to my brother’s medical bills.
 
->-> Click here to donate at GoFundMe. <-<-
 
If you are in Madison and decide to donate via GoFundMe, please stop by the TC and grab any workout DVD I might have as a thank you for your generous donation.
 
Thanks again for being part of my life, please don’t feel sorry for me, or my family. Life can be beautiful and life can be challenging for all of us.  Challenges only make us stronger. I can’t wait to see what the weeks, months, and years have to come for me and for you.