Monday Motivation: Guest post from Sarah Vance that will redefine how you see yourself

Do you ever think that once you get your ideal body that you will finally be content in your own skin?

That once you fit in your desired jeans size- you will never have problems picking out clothes again- because you will love EVERYTHING you put on your body?

 Or maybe you think that once you hit a goal weight- your life will magically change and you will never wake up in disgust with what is looking at you back in the mirror?

I thought these things to- and it wasn’t until years later that I discovered I had it completely backwards.

Hi! My name is Sarah Vance. I am a former bikini competitor, fitness model, and chronic dieter. I spent years searching for the perfect meal plan that would lead me to the ideal body that I had instilled in my head. I spent copious amounts of time ‘fixing’ my body…and when I finally looked like the ideal body that was in my head… I was actually at my lowest point and least confident in my own skin. My fitness regimen and eating habits ruled my life.

Sarah_before

I don’t think my story is uncommon with women- and as a matter of fact it is becoming more common with young girls. We as women feel extreme pressure to look a certain way from society’s unrealistic standards.

I would say the majority of women start a fitness regimen to ‘fix’ their body. Their body becomes their project. The majority of women start their first diet in hopes to mold their body into what they envision in their head.

All this time we are searching to become MORE. More confident, healthier, radiant, happier with our bodies, and sometimes we are looking for more LOVE from ourselves or others.

It wasn’t until I challenged all my ideals, gave a middle finger to society’s idea of beauty, and created happiness in my life that I had all of these things.

I went from tearing myself down, to building myself up in more ways than one. I quit dieting cold turkey (and have never looked back) I stopped worrying about exercising, and focused on moving in a way that is a celebration of my body and what it can do(hello powerlifting).  I started to take charge of my life and spent all the time I spent on obsessing over how many calories were in a piece of pizza or how many calories I burned from a run and put into areas that needed work: My relationship, my job, my internal self, my relationship with food, and my health.

You see: what we all desire is achievable in any body we have, however we go about achieving it in a backwards state of mind.

You see: You cannot hate your body into loving it. It simply doesn’t work that way. Take it from me- I tried that route, and I guarantee that you will not end up in a body that you love.

After I made a huge mind shift something magical happened: Everything I desired that my goal body promised started coming to me….

…confidence.

…love.

…health.

….freedom.

….happiness.

…empowerment.

…trust and faith in myself.

Sarah_after

Am I there? No. I don’t think there is ever a true ‘there’. I think it is human nature to have days where we want to go into an all out war with our body- but with this new found mindset and perspective I can come back to a place of love and respect for my body, and work through what is actually behind those feelings- because when we wake up saying: I am so <fat, gross, lumpy>, and I hate <my butt, cellulite, stretch marks, flabby arms> it usually isn’t about the body itself. Something is behind it, and only you can figure that out.

A question I want you to ask yourself is this: What does ‘there’ look like? What does this woman do, think, feel, act? How does she live her life?

Take a moment and reflect on that- then….see all those things. Now Go Do Them. Fearlessly. 

If you think your body is prohibiting you—sit with that and really break that mind barrier down.  I bet you that your body isn’t holding you back from anything, it is your mindset.

Do you really want to spend more time tearing yourself down when you can start building yourself up? Probably not, and how that has worked out for you this far. It probably hasn’t.

Why not try a new way of thinking and being? You never know- you may see the magic happen like I did, but you won’t know until you try.

Sarah_Vance

Sarah is a body positive fitness coach, nurse, lip gloss lover, barbell slinging, diet-ditching quirky chick. She specializes in helping radiant women learn to cultivate self love, nourishment, strength.  She is a former bikini champion and knows all to well the extremes of the fitness world. She is an ICU nurse who values health and living life to its fullest. Her favorite foods include a juicy burger, sushi, and a great steak. Her favorite hobbies include fishing, reading, watching good movies, and laughing until her stomach hurts.

Be sure to sign up for her FREE guide on how to start loving your body with five simple steps HERE. She will also send you ways to create a positive mindset, how to eat food effortlessly, love your fitness lifestyle, and own your body with confidence.

You can also follow Sarah on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram!

 

The KEY to PROGRESS

Happy Tuesday Everybody!

Today’s post covers a tiny bit of a topic I get asked about all the time: progress.

Well, I say progress when most ask about results. To me, progress trumps what we view as results every time. Even though progress is admittedly important, how do we attain it?

One word: CONSISTENCY.

We undermine that word and treat it like either a nasty thing OR a super human trait. Let’s clear it up shall we?

For our purposes I will pull a very simple definition from dictionary.com

CONSISTENCY:  steadfast adherence to the same principles, course, form, etc.

Take a look at the first 2 words: STEADFAST ADHERENCE.

Consistency is formed by forming daily habits which lead you towards your personal goals. By the way, if your goals are unclear it will be impossible to become consistent.

If you are looking to make a lifestyle change for the betterment of your health, consistent choices towards that end must be maintained. In other words, you cannot hop from one diet to the next or one workout plan to the next or one theory to the next.

I know what your going to say….”But I read where I’m not seeing results because I’m not changing my routine enough.” WRONG. You think you read that when in reality what you read has nothing to do with you. If you are a desk jockey getting advice from sports magazines you CANNOT do what elite athletes do and expect their results…..sorry to burst your bubble.

A solid nutrition and exercise plan is needed to make lasting changes.

How long do you need to be “on” these plans?

Preferably, it should be a plan that can handle the changes you will make in strength as well as any biochemical changes within the body (i.e. muscle gain, fat loss, etc.). In other words: FOR LIFE.

We all want some kind of magical end date because that is what media shoves down our throats on a daily basis. The truth is, to be truly healthy and fit it will take a lifetime because your body and your goals are ever changing.

Start by solidifying your goals and stop chasing other peoples goals. It’s cool to be inspired by others, but if you’re living through them it really doesn’t give you much time to live.

Then put habits into practice by committing to consistency. This means you WILL stick to your plan through rain or shine and no matter what the scale or your jeans say on any given day.

Give your plan a solid 4 weeks to start creating habit. COMMIT to the consistency, not the results. THIS one action will result in progress.

At the end of the day, I prefer a body being built by years of dedication rather than one 6 or 12 week hotshot plan.

Stay committed to YOUR goals,

Michelle

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