Category

Mindset

Struggling with motivation and consistency?

By | Food For Thought, Lifestyle, Mindset

My wife and I are getting ready for our second child and this pregnancy has been quite a different experience for both of us.

With the first, everything was new and exciting.

Tessa loved being pregnant.

There was the fascination and excitement as Tessa’s body morphed into a new shape.

Each week we would find out what size vegetable our baby was and what biological functions were being created during that gestational week.

Then there was the baby room prep and making sure we had all the “stuff” for baby’s arrival.

Time flew by and each week built upon the last as our excitement grew.

Hospital bags for both Tessa and myself were packed weeks and weeks in advance of our due date.

But this time around it hasn’t been quite as exciting. We haven’t marveled quite like we did the first time around, at how Tessa’s body is changing, again preparing to birth a little human.

I haven’t been checking in to see what size vegetable the baby is this week.

This pregnancy is more like a necessary means to our desired outcome, to bless Bo with a sibling and for us to open our hearts to another tiny human.

Before I go on, please don’t take this as us being ungrateful. We are so incredibly thankful that we can conceive and seem to have a healthy growing baby. We are experiencing so much gratitude and we are grateful beyond words every day for this blessing and journey that we are on.

I am, however, even more excited about the baby’s actual arrival, because becoming a father has far exceeded my previous expectations.

The same thing happens in our fitness journey.

I see it in my own life and the lives of our clients at the Transformation Center.

There is an excitement and newness of starting a new plan, joining a new program, and meeting new people.

The body might start to feel better quickly. Clothes fit a little looser and energy is high.

But then when it no longer becomes new, it is no longer as exciting.

I see this happen as soon as week 3 in our programs. Our staff talks often about ways we can help people get past the 3-4 week hump.

For some it happens much later, but everyone will experience this at some point.

Unlike a pregnancy, which has a finite amount of time, living a healthy lifestyle never has an end.

So what can you do to stay motivated?

Here are a couple ideas for you:

  • Find the beauty in each day, in each meal, in each workout.
  • Make things fun. Connect with a workout buddy and plan to hit the same classes together. Find forms of exercise that are fun. But keep strength training in the mix, even if you don’t love it at first–it is so critical to our overall health and injury prevention. And most people come to love it eventually… having great trainers and fun workout buddies makes the time fly by. 
  • Remind yourself why you are doing it. We all have our reasons, but keep these at the forefront of your mind.
  • Sign up for an activity or event that will require you to specifically train for it. This is why I keep signing up for races.
  • Keep learning. Learn new recipes, try new types of exercises, try a new hobby or skill. Learning keeps things fresh and ensures we are always growing.

So if you are struggling with motivation, realize it’s normal.

Things will ebb and flow.

But those who win are those who are the most consistent. It becomes a non-negotiable in their life.

We are here to help, whether you are a current client struggling to find motivation, a former client who has fallen back into bad habits, or someone who has been shy of starting their journey.

Reply to this email and let’s chat.

Keep moving,

Dustin and TC team

Let’s talk about injuries

By | Food For Thought, Mindset, Transformation Center

Injury isn’t a topic that is sexy or exciting to talk about, but it is pretty much inevitable. Most injuries happen just going about life, and on a rare occasion it can happen while working out. I would estimate it’s less than 10% of the time related to working out, at least here at the Transformation Center.

It can be very frustrating, especially for those new to exercise, when they have an exercise related injury. I have seen many throw in the towel way too soon and give up, thinking that exercise just isn’t right for them.

Let me share a personal story.

This weekend I am heading to the Twin Cities to run a marathon. I signed up a couple weeks ago after my poor performance at Ironman.

If I were to have run this marathon around the time of Ironman, I was in good enough run shape to qualify for Boston. Not saying I would have, but saying I had the fitness to get there.

Now, I have been sick for a few weeks, and it’s been 5 weeks since I have done a long run, so I don’t expect a very fast run.

But…

It was only 4 years ago that I first gave running a shot. Many of you know the story, but I had only run a mile or more 2-3 times in my life and hated it.

I hired a coach, and committed to slowly building my miles up.

That first year of running was anything but smooth!

I developed 4 separate injuries from running… two foot issues, one achilles, and one knee/quad injury.

During these setbacks my mind kept saying, “See Dustin, you aren’t meant to be a runner.” There were so many times I wanted to quit.

But I had a bigger goal, finish my first Ironman.

So I would take it easy, modify, focus on foam rolling/stretching and eventually the injury would heal, and then another would pop up.

5 Ironmans later, multiple marathons, and over 30 additional shorter races, and I have only experienced a couple small niggles since that first year.

If I would have given up so soon, and looked at the injuries as a sign to give up trying, then I wouldn’t have had some of the most amazing experiences of my life.

Today’s message isn’t about running, it’s about understanding that you will probably get injured at some point. You might need to slow down or modify, but it doesn’t mean you need to completely stop everything.

At the Transformation Center, we have had clients who have broken a foot or maybe a wrist, or suffered some other kind of injury, but they have come back right away in a boot or cast. Even though they can’t do everything, they can still do something… and something is always better than nothing.

Keep moving,

Dustin Maher

PS Have you struggled with physical issues that are stopping you from exercising? Click here and let’s chat. There are some challenges that we don’t specialize in, but there are many we are very good at working with.

My Best Advice On How To Make A Transformation

By | Behavior Change, Health, Killer Kurves, Lifestyle, Mindset, Nutrition, Strength, Transformation Center, Transformations

We have a new Killer Kurves session starting this week and I just shared with them my best advice on how to make the most of the next 12 weeks.

I wanted to share it with you too because I think the messages are applicable to whatever journey you are on. So here it is:

I have been thinking a lot about the 12 week journey you are about to embark on and I am so excited for you and what is going to happen, even though you probably have no idea.

In Steve Job’s famous interview he says (paraphrase), “It is impossible to connect the dots when at the present time, it is only when looking back can you see the path taken.”

K2 will be a dot that will send you in a path towards more of everything you want in life.

People join because they want to lose weight, but they stay because of the strength, confidence, and friendships they form.

That is why 85-90% of those who complete our first 12 week session continue on as an alumni.

My advice to you as a trainer for 15 years and 7 years into the Killer Kurves program is as follows…

-Believe and trust in the process. There is no challenge or barrier that someone else in our program hasn’t overcome before.

-You are not weird, messed up or more broken than anyone else. As humans we all have major challenges, short-comings, and flaws. We are all different but the same.

-Show up. Make attending your sessions as high of a priority as a doctors appointment. Make it a non-negotiable to the best of your ability.

-Open up. You might feel guilt or shame for things that have happened in your past. Again, we all have stuff in our lives. The more you can open up and share, the quicker the transformation.

-Keep an open mind. Don’t tell yourself you aren’t a runner, don’t like vegetables, or can’t do pushups. These thoughts place limiting beliefs that manifest themselves into truths. Stop them now and replace them with empowering, supportive thoughts.

-Embrace others. If you don’t have a supportive environment at home, work, or other places, that makes things hard. So it’s even more important to connect and build relationships within your K2 groups. They can help you overcome a lot of negative influences in your life.

-Enjoy the journey. It’s not a race. A race has a start and a finish. You are on a journey that will continue for the rest of your life. While short-term goals are great, don’t forget the long-term focus.

-Don’t underestimate the power of small changes…. Increasing your water, increasing your vegetables, reducing sugar, getting an extra 30 minutes of sleep. These play HUGE roles in the way you feel.

-Pursue progress, not perfection. The more “perfect” you try to be, the more stress it will cause and the more likely it is that you will give up all together. Make it a goal to be trending towards being fitter, stronger, and healthier each week. Again small changes throughout the day yield huge results long term. You will have bad days, weekends, and even maybe a bad week or two, but get right back on track and don’t feel guilty.

-Always keep improving. This especially goes for alumni. Even if you have reached your ideal/goal weight you shouldn’t just now coast. Set other goals—it might be a strength goal, an event goal, or an endurance goal.

-Have fun. You might like to exercise or maybe you have hated it your entire life. Either way exercise can be fun, and doing it with others makes it even better.

-Finally don’t take yourself too seriously… because nobody is watching and we ALL have these moments. Maybe you will trip over your own feet in warm up, or pass some gas during Russian twists, or roll off the ball during back extensions. Just laugh it off and continue on.

I could say a lot more but this is enough for now.

I am so proud of you for taking this step. In the 7 years of this program I have never heard one person say, “I regret joining K2.” They only regret not starting earlier.

If there is anything I can do to help, don’t hesitate to ask. You may not see me physically during all your workouts, but I keep in close contact with the trainers to make sure we are supporting you the best possible way.

If you find yourself ready to make a change, contact us ASAP.

Visit https://madisonbootcamps.com/killer-kurves/ to learn more.

How to Stop Emotional and Behavioral Sabotage with these 10 Mindset Habits

By | Behavior Change, Food For Thought, Health, Killer Kurves, Lifestyle, Mindset

Thinking of making a TRANSFORMATION for LIFE? You know you want to change and you know it’s going to take real commitment on your part to do it.

Are you in the right MINDSET to get you to your goals and keep you there for life? Here are my TOP 10 MINDSET HABITS to inspire and keep you on the road to success even when life gets difficult. It is often the behavioral and emotional sabotaging we do to ourselves that takes us off course.

Speaking of transformation for life… this week I announced the opening of our next 12 week Killer Kurves weight loss and lifestyle program. If you have 40-200 lbs to lose, this could be the program you are looking for.

Click here to learn more and apply ->-> http://madisonbootcamps.com/killer-kurves/

Habit #1 – I fully forgive myself and others.

In order to be successful at major lifestyle changes, you must forgive yourself & others in order to move forward, focused on your best possible future. Forgiveness is powerful; it will feel like removing a heavy weight from your heart. Without all that pain, shame or fear you have been holding onto, you will be so much lighter, ready to take action, ready to make real lifestyle changes and open up that space for optimism and determination to keep moving forward toward your best life.

Habit into Action

“Adopt a mantra that you say to yourself the moment that a guilty memory or feeling arises. The following phrases are particularly effective: “I’m not that person anymore;” or “My attention belongs in the present;” or “I am not here to suffer anymore.” Choose the appropriate phrase and repeat it, without fail, every time you feel guilty. In this way, you are not only telling yourself the truth, for you aren’t the person anymore who committed a past misdeed, but you are also giving your brain a new, more positive input. This will help to wean it off the old wiring that keeps messaging guilt long after guilt is deserved.” – A suggestion from Deepak Chopra, The Huffington Post

Habit #2 – Exercise is a gift, not a punishment.

If you are serious about a physical transformation, you must change your mind about exercise. Exercise is a gift you must give yourself, in some way, every day. Moving your body can no longer be a punishment for poor eating choices. It is a true gift to your heart, mind, muscles and more that will keep “giving” the rest of your long life. Will it still be hard, physically? Yes, it should be if you are doing it right. Will it be so much easier when you have the right attitude about it? Yes, definitely. You will push yourself, lovingly, into workouts you never knew you could do.

Habit into Action

Make exercise an enjoyable experience. Work out with friends. Don’t know anyone in class? Introduce yourself and strike up a conversation with a friendly face. Do the exercises that challenge you, but bring you energy, not drain you of it. Buy new shoes and a workout outfit. Set your alarm with some soothing or inspiring music to get up early and get your workout in right away, before you can make any excuses to not do it.

Habit #3 – Food is meant to serve my body.

Your nutrition will affect every aspect of your life and will improve your chances at any type of transformation. To be successful for life, you must change your mind about food. When you decide to view food as an energy source to serve your body, your choices will reflect your physical needs: slow-burning carbs for extended energy, muscle-building proteins for increased strength, healthy fats to keep you satisfied, vitamin and mineral rich foods to support a strong immune system and healthy body functions. You will no longer choose artificial and convenient foods. You will no longer reach for food to soothe a feeling other than hunger.

Habit in Action

When you eat, ask yourself the following questions. “How will this food serve my body?” “How will it give me energy?” “Will it make me stronger?” “Will it make my body function improve?” and “Am I actually hungry or am I bored or trying to avoid some feelings?” If you aren’t sure of the answer, Google it. There is so much nutritional information at our finger-tips, it is much easier to make better choices.

Habit #4 – I will no longer compare myself to others.

Any transformation will come with doubts. Maybe you’ve lived a certain way for more than 30 years. The best way to quiet those doubts is to stay focused on moving forward. You must keep your eyes on your own paper, stay in your lane and decide how YOU will measure YOUR success. You can no longer use others as a ruler to judge by.

Everyone is doing their best, all the time, including you. Your best can only be appreciated when you judge it against your best, yesterday. Our bodies, our lives, our relationships are all different and can’t be compared or judged as successful or not, since we don’t know all the facts about everyone else’s situations. You do know the facts of your own and you can take full responsibility for the actions and the feelings you have about their outcomes.

Habit in Action

If you wear a wristwatch or bracelet (if you don’t, put a rubber band on your wrist or ask for a Fit Moms For Life bracelet), any time you find yourself comparing, feeling inferior, feeling superior or being judgmental of yourself or others, switch the band to the other wrist. You might be surprised how often you switch.

Habit #5 – Stop compiling problems

Successful people have problems too. They just have a great skill of tackling problems or obstacles one at a time. It is easy to get overwhelmed and not address easily solved problems, because we’ve added them up with all the rest into something that seems insurmountable. Successful people look at problems separately, objectively, and they consider them challenges, not problems. Each hurdle can then be added to your “proud” list once you have solved it.

Habit into Action

Ask a trusted friend or partner to listen to a single obstacle or problem that has been on your mind. Don’t have someone to talk to? Ask a friend in your workout group or your trainer. You don’t have to ask for their opinion on what you should do, but you will find that as you are explaining the problem out loud, alone (meaning without all the other problems you have swimming around in your head) and without emotions, you will have made that problem seem to be less of a problem, more of a challenge and certainly manageable all on your own. It will be a lightbulb moment – try it.

Habit #6– Speak and think only in truths.

On the transformation journey you must decide you will no longer generalize and you will speak and think only in truths. How often do you hear yourself say, “I always fail” or “I never get it right”? Are those statements REALLY true? No, you don’t always fail. You have successful moments all the time, every day. You can no longer generalize about yourself or others. If you are only speaking in truths, it might sound more like … “I didn’t lose all the weight I wanted to, but I did lose inches off my waist and made several new friends.”

Habit into Action

Be mindful and totally aware of generalizations when you speak and think today. Focus on it all day. Any time you think or speak a generalization, quickly write it down in your phone or on a notepad. At the end of the day, take those generalizations to a friend or family member and ask them if they are true about you or your situation. If you don’t have anyone to chat with, ask yourself and be totally honest. Are those generalizations fully TRUTHS? I bet not. It will really improve your attitude and enthusiasm.

Habit #7 – Busy is not better.

Successful people have learned that busy is NOT better. Our culture tells us to judge our lives by the quantity of things we can accomplish in one day. To what end? We are a sick, stressed out, malnourished, overweight population that continues to get sicker. Reject that thinking and judge your life by the quality of your time. Create space around your activities to make memories and relish in the small pleasures.

Habit into Action

Sit down and write down your three most time-demanding activities and decide what needs to go or can be decreased. Do you need to cut down on your hours at the office or in the car carting kids around? Would the kids be okay if they only played one sport and one instrument? Could you reduce your social commitments for FREE time, just for you and your family to enjoy the fun of daily life? Boundaries can and need to be set in a positive way to protect this precious time. Your life needs to be manageable and you need to create space for self-care now—there is no time like the present to take action.

Habit #8 – Expect more of myself and others.

Visualize yourself transformed. You know what you want and in order to get there, you must raise the bar for yourself and others. When you make commitments to yourself and others, you hold them, even if it’s not “comfortable”. Kick “comfortable” to the door and continue to challenge yourself in all kinds of ways. Be brave. Take responsibility for how you treat yourself, others, and how others treat you. Set an achievable short-term goal today. As you do, you will inspire others and you will begin to expect more from them too. Make this a monthly habit.

Habit into Action

Work some accountability into your transformation. If you want to get more serious about nutrition, try food journaling or pre-packaging your week of meals/snacks. Sign up for an achievable exercise challenge or be vulnerable to enough to say you’re sorry or ask for an apology from someone concerning an incident you might be feeling bad about. Sign up for a seminar or class that will help you learn more about your specific goals.

Habit #9– Reduce screen time.

Find a way to reduce your screen time. It’s NOT just our kids who are addicted. Studies show that our sedentary lifestyle is as dangerous as smoking.

Habit into Action

Instead of watching a family flick on Friday night, head out and take the dog for a walk. In the winter, you could shovel the neighbor’s drive or bundle up and go ice-skating or sledding. In the nicer weather, enjoy a fire pit in your back yard or explore a new park. Get out a board game or take a drive to a neighboring downtown to check it out.

Do NOT take your phone, iPAD, computer or TV into your bedroom. Facebook ISN’T THAT interesting and is not worthy of risking your health. Up late surfing for deals? No more – shop during the day and GO TO BED!

Habit #10 – If I need help, I can ask for it.

This transformation is a big deal to you. Those who love you most will understand and be there for you. All you have to do is ask for help if you need it. These are real lifestyle changes that are difficult to start and even more difficult to maintain. Reach out to family or friends who have been successful in maintaining a healthy lifestyle. Ask them to support you in your efforts. If you don’t have anyone in your circle to ask, you will have to find a mentor, or coach, a stranger in class for help. People are more willing to help you than you think. Just have the courage to ask.

Habit in Action

Ask your partner to join you in your new pursuits. Ask your partner and kids to support your choices, join in the fun of making new healthy habits and be okay with getting rid of the old. Ask a friend to watch the kids while you take an hour to exercise/cook/or learn a new skill. Ask a trainer how to modify an exercise you don’t feel comfortable doing yet. Ask a teacher for extra help or a respected mentor to grab lunch and give you their best advice.

These types of habits are what we focus on and discuss in all our programs at the Transformation Center. So if you are already part of our community, continue to dive deep into these areas. If you aren’t yet, what are you waiting for?

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: https://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.

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.

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!

One Key to Happiness!

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

There are times in life when things happen that are beyond our control.  There was nothing I could have done to prevent my mom’s death, but I do have 100% control over the meaning I give it and how I handle things moving forward.

I could:

  • Be bitter towards God
  • Regret times in the past when I could have spent more time with her
  • Dwell on the fact my mom will never see me get married or have kids
  • Try to blame the doctors for missing a ticking time bomb in my mom’s brain
  • Etc…

But I choose:Wedding

  • Trust God will turn this tragedy into triumph
  • Celebrate all the amazing times we did have together
  • Be thankful my mom got to see one of her sons get married and enjoy the birth of one grandchild
  • Be thankful that her legacy will live on through stories to future wife and kids
  • Accept the fact that life isn’t always fair and we aren’t 100% control of things
  • Treasure each day as a gift

What meaning you give to the many events, conversations, and interactions you have each day will greatly determine your happiness in life. Maybe you are riding your bike and fall and break your collar bone.  You could get into a negative mindset and tell yourself things like, I am so clumsy, I always get hurt, bad things always happen to me, see I shouldn’t exercise, etc.

Or…

You could tell yourself, at least I got hurt while being active, it was just a fluke accident, looks like I get to work on my legs for a few weeks, this gives me a great opportunity to focus on my nutrition, etc.

Today, think about an event or conversation you have recently had that you have given a negative meaning towards, and change those beliefs up.

 

Lessons From Having Just Completed 10,000 Pullups

By | Challenge, In-home workouts, Lowerbody toning, Mindset, Strength, Uncategorized

A few months back I wrote in this newsletter and posted on Facebook that 100 days from now I will have completed 10,000 pullups, 100 each day for 100 days. I am proud to say I completed this with near perfection.  The only slip up was one day I forgot and went to bed with 20 to go.  Waking up the next morning I realized it and did those plus that days 100.  ->-> Click here to watch my pullup video on my personal Facebook page <-<-

This in many ways was one of my toughest challenges I have ever put my body through.  It was so tough because of the grind of 100 consecutive days.  It didn’t matter if I was traveling, working 18 hours, had a nagging injury, or so on, I had to get it done. No excuses, I did it. Why… Because I try my best to live up to my word and my commitment, both to myself and to you.  I publicly put it out there to the world, which in turn gave me extra support and accountability.

On day 94, it was 9:30 at night and I was completely exhausted.  I hadn’t done any pullups and had no desire to do so.  Instead, I decided to take a 2 hour nap on the couch and wake up at 11:30 pm and do my 100.

I have had many trainers, clients and friends ask me how it was.  I will give you a few pros and cons.

2015-07-06_1150Cons:

  1. My lats (major pullup muscles) became severely overtrained starting around day 25 and never really recovered.  It became nearly impossible for me to raise my arms completely up because it felt like they were going to rip from the bone.  The first 10 pullups each day made me want to cry it hurt so bad.  This is why we trainers say don’t lift similar muscle groups on consecutive days.
  2. The daily grind of the challenge decreased my desire to lift and workout the rest of my body with weights.  I am embarrassed to admit it, but I hardly lifted during the three months.  I have trained hard in stair training and biking though during this time.
  3. I lost the joy of pullups because it became a chore and a burden.

2015-07-06_1149Pros:

  1. When starting the challenge I could do 14 pullups in a row at 190 lbs and 6’5.  I can now do 29 straight pullups at the age of 32.  A couple years ago, I trained hard in pullups and did 21, so I am blowing those numbers out of the water.
  2. It forced me to be extremely disciplined each day regarding the pullups.  I would have to seek it out and be very intentional.  It became a non-negotiable in my life to go to bed having done 100 pushups.  It became part of who I am.
  3. My back, biceps and grip are extremely strong right now, and despite the fact that I didn’t lift much else my body looks very fit and strong.

This experience has given me confidence that I can set a seemingly overwhelming goal for myself and achieve it.

Now it is your turn…

What goal or challenge would you like to set for yourself? ->-> Reply and let me know by clicking here and commenting on the video on Facebook. <-<-

People are asking me if I will continue doing a 100 pullups per day.  Definitely not, but I also don’t want to stop the momentum I have gained.  One idea I have is committing another 100 days to 150 pullups/day 3X per week.  This would allow me to progress, but have those important days of rest.  Not sure if I am going to do this yet, I look forward to getting back into a more normal weight training routine again.

Thanks for all your support, I couldn’t have done this without you.  During the last month, I wouldn’t start my pullups until 9 pm, because I dreaded it, but with your help I didn’t give in.