"The longer I live the more convinced I become that life is 10% what happens to us and 90% how we respond to it!
I've spent years thinking about sayings like this.
Then one day I read a book by Viktor Frankl. I'm not going to quote from it but I'd rather give you my take away.
Viktor Frankl was a Holocaust survivor.
The story that sticks in my mind to this day is the story he told about all the men dying around him. How they gave up and who should judge them?!
Then he told the story of how he and a few others survived. The would tear up tiny pieces of paper and close their eyes and pretend it was savory foods from home as they ate the paper. He talked in great length about what he chose to "think" about.
He also spoke of how not even the worst people could take away the beauty he saw in the sunset.
No one could take away what he chose to think.
This is and always has been amazing to me. And here we sit in America, the most free of all people and we whine and overeat nutritionally deficit foods.
What will you do today to change your thoughts for the better?
Say hello to Jericho!
Jericho has been a right hand man in this entire endeavor!
Always saying yes to my ideas and challenges and she's always coachable!
When I first met Jericho, not only would she not get in the pictures but she would trip up on the smallest step!
Today she's one of the most confident and strong women I know!
She's also a major part of IMPEL Training. She leads when it's time to lead and she follows when it's time to follow and she's always there to help the team!
She went from being at the back of the line during Trail Class to the front of the line during 5k races! She's doing 20" box jumps and lifting 35# dumbbells in each hand!
I also love imagining what it's like to watch her lift a 50# bag of dog food into the grocery cart at 5' tall! She's got the best form ever!
Jericho continues to reach personal goals amidst life changes no matter what! Couldn't be happier to have her on the IMPEL team!
Brenda L. Lewis
Brenda Lewis Training
Click here to view Andrea in action
Say hello to Andrea.
Andrea has been active for as long as I've known her but when she committed to participating in the 2018 August Tough Mudder, things changed!
From there she remained a part of our Habit Group and has become a major player in IMPEL Training!
Andrea has set goals and is reaching them left and right!
She's gotten into clothes she's not worn in ten years!
She's also rocking the gun competitions! Moving like an action star :-)
Andrea is a committed team player and uplifts the team constantly. Always looking at the positive side of things no matter what. I'm super excited to watch her reach her goals.
Andrea also recently ran a 5k with us this year, her turing 60 and me turning 50! I'm sure she surprised herself on how easily she got through the run!
Brenda L. Lewis
Brenda Lewis Training
Say hello to Paula!
Paula has been a part of BLTraining from the very start!
Introducing herself to me and coming to an Ab Class for 30 minutes was our first experience.
In the spring of 2018, Paula said yes to joining us for the Tough Mudder in August 2018.
We trained and prepared and Paula succeeded! Since then, Paula has committed to being a part of our Habit Group/Mastermind which is now part of our IMPEL Training group.
She works at being her best self daily. She journals her food and has learned a ton about macro nutrients and meals and muslces.
One of the first things I remember her telling me is that cleaning the goat pen used to take the weekend and she would be so sore afterward but last year she did it in 3-4 hours and wasn't sore at all after!
She also finds it easy to carry things that used to feel like work! Like the water softener salt!
Paula is a committed member of IMPEL Training and helps to push others as I push her. She's a team player through and through. In doing so, she's become a teacher to others as well as her family.
Paula can now run a 5k like it's nothing!
Say hello to Erin.
Erin has been coming to BLTraining since late 2016. She began getting back into working out and taking time for herself. In January of 2019, we started the IMPEL program and Erin made a committment to being a part of it.
Three workouts a week, working at journaling food and making best choices possible.
Erin started noticing she found things like carrying two bags of trash at the same time was a breeze! Let alone using one arm to throw them both in the can at the same time!
One of Erin's biggest changes is in awareness!
Being committed to the group and to herself has pushed her to limits she needed to visit!
Her awareness regarding her muscles and core strength have come full circle and are now second nature!
Friends are noticing changes and her daughter now joins her mission to challenge herself!
I love the committment Erin brings to the group. It's highly motivating and she's never turned down a challenge!
Erin is committed to lifelong changes within her family and in my opinion that's what it's all about!
Erin is currently in the middle of so many more changes and growth, I can't wait to share those as well!
Brenda L. Lewis
Brenda Lewis Training
Say hello to Cathy!
Cathy has been coming to BLTraining since September 2016.
She worked out on average two days a week and learned about the basics as she went along and focused on raising her daughters.
Then in the middle of 2018 she decided to commit to the 2018 Tough Mudder in August with the group.
That was the start of her journey to being her best self now!
She is committed to three workouts plus a week, better eating habits, journaling those eating habits and being "authentic".
She focuses on habits that are for a LIFETIME best self!
Cathy now does things at home like putting together furniture that she might have waited for help to put together.
She freely and swiftly steps over the dog gate on a regular basis instead of opening it up to walk through.
"I feel conifident knowing I can help hang a very heavy clock or put together and install a very heavy bookcase using good body mechanics and core strength" - Cathy
She makes daily choices like these knowing they help keep her mobile, functional and self sufficient!
Her workouts keep her strong and flexible and agile so that she can keep up with her daughters and feel energetic.
I've enjoyed having Cathy in the IMPEL Training group immensely! She puts in her all and remains coachable. When I tell her I see she has more to give, she already knows!
I love that about her. She's a team player and loves her IMPELmates! They count on her and she counts on them.
I look forward to Cathy reaching more personal goals, creating new ones and creating a similar process at home with her family!
Brenda L. Lewis
Brenda Lewis Training
The clean eating rules???
What comes to mind when you hear the words "clean eating"?
I've heard all kinds of descriptions, but a search on Google and you get pages and pages of "GREEN" looking veggies and fruits etc.
Since there's no rule book, let's talk about how "clean eating" can mean different things to different people!
Ultimately, we are told that food coming from the ground it's grown in is best. While that may seem appropriate at first, it's not always.
I'm no expert on digestion but I do know some foods are better digested when changed a bit, maybe by cooking a certain way for example.
The more "whole" the food the cleaner it is. Makes sense. But it's just not for everyone.
Unless you're literally walking to the garden and plucking fruits and veggies from the plant, most food we eat is "processed" in some way.
My favorite way to approach "clean eating" is to find out what your diet is currently like.
I'll take one of my first students for example.
Her literal daily diet consisted of....
poptarts for breakfast, juice
chicken nuggets from the cafeteria with fries
similar frozen food in the oven at dinner
At this point, we could simply help her add fruits and vegetables into her diet to help clean it up a bit! Get some good nutrients into her body.
I also suggested Quaker instant oatmeal instead of poptarts. Instant oatmeal is definitlely not a clean eat food but to her it is.
We talked of her ordering a sandwich instead of chicken nuggets for lunch.
To another person, instant oatmeal and a sandwich are definitley NOT clean eating!
So, what can we do to clean YOUR diet up?
One thing most agree on is cutting back on added sugar!
Choosing products that have little or no added sugar is a great way to clean up your diet! Check your pasta sauce, ketchup, and some mustards!
Simply adding vegetables into your diet will help in the long run. Start with one thing and before you know it, your thoughts and tastes will begin to change and desire will grow.
Not all processed foods are bad tho. There are some foods that are processed yet contain the highest quality ingredients possible! They rank better than some vegetables that are grown with pesticide.
I met a woman once who grew her own vegetables and then grew a huge amount of vegetables to take to the farmers market in her hometown.
She told me herself, she would never eat the stuff she grew for the farmers market because it was grown with pesticide use like the farmers use. But not her personal garden.
If you currently eat alot of fruits and veggies, maybe your next step is to eat organic!
What is clean eating to me?
I usually will not eat dishes that contain white sauces or cheeses anymore. If I eat a tuna noodle dish? It's simply al dente cooked macaroni elbow noodles with a can of best choice tuna and then a tablespoon of grapeseed oil. Salt and pepper and I'm in heaven!
I don't like to eat dishes with too many ingredients. Thats my way of keeping it whole and clean. I still occasionaly eat a frozen pizza but I eat so much more veggies and fruits than I ever used to. I have my processed foods. I will never be without my meal replacement shake and my bars that have an appropriate macro for a good mood!
I love fish and occasionally eat a hamburger!
What do you do to clean up your diet?
By the age of 30ish if you’re not making muscle you’re losing muscle!
Have you heard this statement?
Do you know how true it is?
Have you heard of sarcopenia?
Did you know we might ALL experience sarcopenia at some point?
So what does that mean really?
Sarcopenia is the loss of muscle mass due to aging. We naturally lose a small percentage of muscle mass starting around 30-40 years of age,
we are actively working to build muscle mass.
Living a sedentary life can also bring about sarcopenia no matter the age.
I’ve crossed the paths of many women who think they do NOT need to strength train (resistance train).
We naturally lose a small percentage of LBM (lean body mass) yearly and the more we “lose” the lower our metabolism also goes!
This is one reason women struggle with weight loss as we age.
Having low LBM has a host of other issues that can cause havoc on a woman’s body, such as hormonal imbalances.
Put these issues together and before you know it, lots of physical ailments going on!
Loss of energy, weight gain (fat gain), headaches, fatigue and much more.
HOW can you counteract the loss of muscle mass?
Here are 5 tips to help grow and retain muscle mass...
1..strength train 2-3 times a week
2..post workout nutrition of healthy carbs and protein
3..make recovery a priority (post nutrition, stretch and foam roll, sleep)
4..frequently change up your workouts
5..drink your water daily!!
FOAM ROLLERS and FISH OIL
Two things that should be a part of everyone’s daily regimen!
Foam rolling has to be the easiest, fail safe, fool proof way to decompress tight, sore, or strained muscles.
Anyone can foam roll!
Teaching kids to take care of their muscles is a task to make a priority, considering posture and technology use these days.
You can get a huge variety of foam rollers just about anywhere!
Even the local drug store sells them now!
FISH OIL has so many studies proving it’s superbly healthy for us!
Our cell walls are made of fat and in order for other nutrients to get in and out of our cells, the wall needs to be flexible...not rigid and stiff.
FOAM ROLLERS and FISH OIL also come in many qualities! So make sure you find ones that are of high quality and not full of contaminants and such. Find a foam roller that is firm but has some slight give to it’s material for starters.
Just imagine massaging the cells and providing quality nutrients for healthy function!
Click here to view a video on how to foam roll...
Click here to buy a foam roller...
Click here to read about why you need Omegas...
Another article from the National Institute of Health...
Click here to see what I buy...
When you take a bite of an apple, that bite doesn’t go directly into your bloodstream. The bite of apple must be properly dealt with by your whole digestive system before it is utilized by the body.
So the saying, “You are what you eat!” isn’t quiet right- it’s more like, “You are what you digest.”
Your digestive tract, or gut, is a protective barrier between the outside world and the inside of your body.
Everything that goes into your gut will be processed before it goes into your bloodstream.
It’s imperative that your digestive system is working efficiently. You need optimal levels of enzymes, vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, stomach acid, essential fatty acids, bile, and healthy bacteria in order to properly digest your food and absorb nutrients.
Without the right amounts of nutrients, you might feel tired, achy, moody, sad, a lack of motivation or concentration, bloated, and sick-All because you’re not properly digesting food!
A compromised gut is, in many cases, the root cause of health issues. Stomach pains and bloating aren’t the only symptoms of poor digestion. Poor nutrient absorption can cause so many other issues.
No matter your ailment, even emotional blahs, the first question to ask yourself is, “Have I been mindful of how I might be digesting my nutrients? “
General tips for better digestion:
•3 deep breaths before you eat
•Chew each bite 25 times
•Eat some fermented foods daily
•Use digestive enzymes especially if you’re over 30yrs old.
Brenda L. Lewis
Working in the Health and Fitness Industry for over ten years now, I thrive on helping people