fitness * wellness * minimalism


Friday, September 18, 2020

My Beginning Thought of Bible Study Fellowship

 A few goals of mine have been to read the Bible all the way through, and be deeper in my faith. Deeper in my faith means believing it both in my heart and my mind. I can remember twice that I have truly felt this way. The first was right before I was about to graduate college and when we first moved to West Virginia. I felt it most when we visited a friend in Michigan. 


Bible Study Fellowship is international bible study. Each group meets on a different day and time based on what works in your life. They have day and night with and without child care. The child care is an option is a age based version of what the adults are doing in their study. Each year the study changes - the options are Genesis, People of the Promised Land 1 and 2, Isaiah, Matthew, John, Romans, Revelation, Moses, Acts and Letters of the Apostles 1 and 2. 

This year is Genesis. Normally each week starts off with your small group going over questions from the past week. After small group is lecture preparing us the week ahead. When you leave you’re giving a booklet about 10-15 pages. The notes are the first part of the booklet. It depends on the week, then the last 2 pages are questions. There are 5 days of questions with each day being 2 or 3 questions. And these questions make you think! It is not something that you can do in 15-20 minutes. 


The first time I did Bible Study Fellowship (BSF) was when I was living in Tulsa. I don’t remember how I heard about it, but I really enjoyed it. It has been awhile and I believe that the first time I we did John. (I honestly can’t remember.) I didn’t finish  the whole season. I think I joined half way into the year. 

The second time I did BSF was my last year in college, again I only did half of it. I graduated in December then never joined a joined in group where I was. I loved this group of ladies. It was a few ladies from each age demographic and varies stages in their faith life. I learned so much from these ladies, and wish I still keep in touch with them. 

The third time I did it was in Washington. I only stopped because we moved to California. I didn’t join a group in California because I was trying to find another job. I was more focused on getting settled than joining another group. I want to say it was Revelations, but that’s a pure guess. 

This is my fourth group and we are studying Genesis. We had our first get to you meeting last Monday. Since we are in a new time they didn’t send the packets, but I was able to get a copy of all the notes for the year. I’m really stoked that I was able to get the whole year just in case something happens. 


I’m really excited for this year because I struggle with the beginning books of the Bible. I am looking forward to actually finishing a study. I really love BSF because I want to get deeper and more spiritual in my faith. I also really love the amount in knowledge that each study has which fulfills my need to know everything. 

I am a little nervous that it is Genesis. I was really hoping that it was Romans or Isaiah. This one was probably towards the end of my list, but I am going in with an open mind. I know that I am here for a reason with this particular study. 


Minus the obvious goal to finish. 

Another goal is to develop and coming into a good morning routine and bible study time before I start my day. 

When I read the Bible I know it to be true in my head, but I really want it to be true in my heart. I want to be anchored in the Bible and it’s truth. 

Tuesday, September 1, 2020

September Goals

Seriously, how it is September! I know it's so cliche and everyone is saying it BUT it's so true!! I have been stuck at home since July 13th, and ready to get back to some sense of normal. I don't think things will ever be the normal like we are use to for a LONG time if ever.

Update on Life:
I'm still furloughed. I am working on some secret project that have started to fulfill me more. I am miss interacting with people. I miss the face to face interactions. I live for Thursday when I go to San Jose for RowHouse. I haven't heard anything from my bosses on when we can go back to work (or any updates), but I live in California. I saw a tweet from another fitness professional saying that it would be December 12th by the time gyms would open based on current trends. (He lives in LA, but everything seems based on their number. Even though I live Northern California)

In August I want to accomplish: 

  • Finish watching Dave Ramsey financial videos
    • FAILED! We haven't watched the videos since July. I think we only have 3 left. 
  • Complete my vision board
    • DONE! I have my pinterest board, but now I want to make collage to put on my desk, and screensavers. 
  • Submit video for RowHouse
    • DONE! And I PASSED!! I am officially a RowHouse North San Jose coach. I'll also be a visiting coach for Pleasanton. 
  • Read (not listen) 1 hour a day
    • DONE! I didn't keep very good track on this, but I think I read everyday. 
  • Workout: Cardio 3x Strength 3x
    • FAILED!! I was so focused on my rowing. 
  • Morning & Evening Routine
    • DONE! Feels good have ritual and routine in place. 
  • Special Project: Not ready to discuss with anyone
    • DONE! Everyday I worked on something towards one (if not all) my secret projects. 

In September I want to accomplish: 

  • Finish watching Dave Ramsey Videos
  • Workout: Strength Training 3x/week and Cardio 4x/week
  • Read: 1 hour at least
  • Create financial budget
  • Blog 10x this month
  • Get email list set up. 
  • Complete everything on Powersheet
What are your goals for September? 

Monday, August 31, 2020

Deadlift Challenge

Deadlift Challenge

Next 30 days focusing on mastering the deadlift. I love doing deadlifts because it works so many muscle groups. 

There are so many ways to do a deadlift. This challenge can do be done however you want to get them done. 

Types of Deadlifts:
Single Leg Deadlift 

Monday, August 24, 2020

Signs Your Losing Weight

Why is the scale still the same? I have been working out everyday this week.

I get this question all the time. I have been eating right, been working and the scale still isn’t moving. There are so many things going on beside the number on the scale. There are so many factors going on.

I understand where you are coming from because the scale has always seen to dictate if we are losing weight or not. I can relate because I am a numbers person. I want to put in the work and see the physical proof that it is working. If not, I want to understand what I need to do better to reach my goal.

There are so many other ways to see you are losing weight or that your fitness plan is working:

1. Clothes fit loosely. One of my favorite tips on this is grab a shirt, pants, whatever doesn’t fit comfortable. Or something you haven’t worn in a while. Use this as your gauge. How is it fitting now?

2. Take a picture. You don’t have to share them unless you want to. Sometimes you can’t see the changes your body is making. Have someone take a 2-3 different shots. My favorite is from the front, from the back, and the side. Try to wear the same thing each time. You’ll need to see the difference with your own eyes.

3. Take measurements. Set a time that you take measurements and make it the same time. I like in the morning before I eat breakfast. Typical measurements are: Chest, Waist, Hips, Thigh, Arm. Some will add: Calf, Neck. When taking measurements, measure one side of the body with all the pressure on the other side. For example, I measure on my left side so I put all the weight on the right side of the thigh and arm measurements. I chose the left side because I am right handed, and usually that it is going to be bigger because I prefer that side.

4. Feel Stronger. This is where keeping a fitness journal can come in handy. Keeping track of how much you lift will show progress. The scale might not be moving but you’re body is changing. Celebrate that success!!

5. More Energy. Sleeping Better. Both of these are qualities of a good workout. You have more energy during the day so you tend not to reach for bad food choices mid afternoon. On the other side you are sleeping better at night.

Friday, August 14, 2020

My thoughts of ACE Certified Personal Training Certification

I have been a trainer 2017. When I decided to become a personal trainer it came down to 2 different certifications. I actually researched so much about what certification I wanted to get a certification that I could take anywhere with me. (Hello baseball life) In the end I thought American Council of Exercise (ACE) was the best fit.


When I was deciding on becoming a trainer I was working as an Admissions Representative in the for profit sector. I liked my job of helping people but I wanted something different. So I didn't know much about fitness, and wanted a program that was going to help me. It came down between ACE and another agency. I decided I would start with ACE because of the monthly payments and access to information. ACE has monthly interest free payments. Now most programs do but 4 years ago they didn't. I love how ACE does interest free payments. I chose the most expensive plan because it offered the most amenities. I wanted to get as much information as I could.

I started to study online before I got the books. I read the first chapter and was so excited about new career path. In the first chapter ACE mentions that it should take about 3 months to get certified if you study about 10 hours a week. I planned out about 6 months to take the test. I know that I am horrible at taking test, so I gave myself more studying time.

My breakdown was 1 chapter each week, ideally. But I gave myself grace on chapters that needed more time. (I’m looking at your anatomy) My process was to read the chapter. Then online I took the quiz. ACE has it set up that you had to get at least 70% to pass the chapter. After the quiz, you can go back and see which ones you missed. They give you the page number to go back and read. I took my physical book and bend the corner of the book to go back and review.

If you need someone to help you more, you can call/email/online chat. I did this a few times, and honestly it depends on who you get. I called in the first time and they just told me to read the book. The answer was there. I felt defeated because I just wasn’t getting it. I called back on a different topic and talked to someone different, and they were extremely helpful. They made sure that I understood the topic and a variety of situations that could arise.

One thing that I would say was hard for me during my studying is I was already working in the fitness industry. I was seeing things that didn’t align with the book. For example, ACE says new trainers struggle with what: getting new clients over marketing, their own works, and 2 other possible answers. I ALWAYS would respond sales/marketing because that is what I was seeing. The gym I worked out the trainers just expected to be given clients. They had ZERO problems getting their own workouts. But for ACE it was getting their own workouts. New trainers have trouble getting in their own workouts. So you have to just go with what the book says.

The Test

To set up the exam, you’ll do that through the ACE portal. You need to make sure you are CPR certified.  Once you get the facility to take the exam, you have to leave everything in the car or some places have lockers. ACE provides everything in detail on what to expect. So I didn’t bring anything with me. The weirdest rule for me was my jacket couldn’t have any pockets. 

The test is 3 hours long with 125 questions. (100 questions are graded, 25 are sample questions and not graded.) They will give you scrap paper if you need it. One place gave me a white board. You’ll put in your information, and the computer will ask 2-3 times if you are ready. Once you enter the exam you have 3 hours and you can’t stop it. Even if you go to the restroom your time is still going. 

My strategy for the test was go through and answer all questions on first instinct. If I was unsure I flagged the question to come back later. After I answered I went back to the flagged questions, and read through the question and answers slowly. Then used process of elimination to answer the question. Sometimes I thought 2 of them could be in answer, but had to think what is the BEST answer. After that I went back to the beginning and read every question and did a tally system. On one of the pages I put yes, no, unsure. I would mark a tally for each question. I would use all 3 hours. After the 3 hours, the test will stop and you’ll need to check mark a few things. Then the computer will tell you if you passed or failed. 

ACE is broken up into 4 categories, and the person at the front will give you a print out. It will give you percentages of how you did in each category. If you pass, CONGRATULATIONS! You’ll get the paper copy of your certificate in a few weeks. If you didn’t, you can resign up for another test. It is $125 for any retest unless you purchased the package that has a retake test.

For my first certification in the fitness industry I enjoyed it. Fitness is a second career choice for me, so I was just taking all the information in to apply it to my clients. I loved all the learning tools that ACE has to help you study. I recommend ACE Certified Personal Training to anyone who is interested in becoming a personal trainer. 

Wednesday, August 12, 2020

How to Have the Best Workout

Just because I am trainer and work at gym doesn't means I have my workouts or days planned. Honestly I usually don't. I struggle with coming up with workouts to keep myself entertained. I can get bored pretty easily. I struggle with working out everyday after I have been at the gym all day. I don't consider teaching the classes as my workouts. I am focused on giving my clients the best workout. 

These are some tips that have worked for me when I am in a funk: 

1. Write it down. 

If i just write workout then I usually don't do it, but if I write the work out I'm more likely to do it. In the past I've been good with looking at my phone, but lately loving printed workouts. 

2. Plan your workouts. 

This can mean muscle specific workouts or total body workouts. I do more total body or hiit style workouts. Gary prefers muscle specific. Try both out to see what you like. 

3. Know your strengths: 

I am much more productive in the mornings than I am in the nights. So I work out in the morning. 

4. Drink water: 

Make it a game. Add flavor. Ideally you want to have half your body weight in ounces. If you are 150 pounds shoot for 75 ounces of water. I suggest working up to this amount if you this is a big number to you. 

5. Accountability Partner: 

Gary and I go to the gym together. In the past we have been horrible accountability partners, but now we are on a good path. 

6. Have fun: 

The workouts should be something that you want to do. When I am designing a workout. I always double check to see if they will enjoy doing some of the exercises. 

7. Rest/Cheat Days: 

I try to have two rest and cheat days. I try to not have mine consecutively because that's just a slippery slide for me to stop going. 

8. Eat: 

Eat something. I try to eat 3-4 meals/snacks per day. Sometimes its more and sometimes it's less. I log my food into MyFitnessPal to help see how much I am eating. If the bag says 1 serving I usually put down 1 1/2. I overestimate what I eat most of the time. 

9. Set out clothes: 

If I know that I am working out in the am then I try to sleep in my workout clothes. If I am working out at night after work then I try to have them ready to go in my workout bag. 

Everyday is different and don't compare yesterdays workout to todays. Do the best you can for the workout you are doing. 

Monday, August 10, 2020

How to Create a Vision Board

Being in quarantine I have been able to accomplish a lot. Some days are better than others, but I would say I'm making strides to become the person I want to be. It's easy to lose sight of whats really important when working crazy hours and putting others before yourself.

During the quarantine I have been doing all sorts of things on self development. I did a bunch of personality and enneagram tests, astrology, etc. Whatever to better understand myself for the future.
One of my favorite things I did was create a vision board of the person I want to be at the end of quarantine.

This wasn't something that I did in one day. It actually took me about a week, but I wanted it to align with my goals both personally, professionally, and philanthropically. I chose to do electronic because I want to be able to see anywhere I go. I have seen paper vision boards with newspaper/magazine clippings, stickers, etc. (Also we have 700 sq ft apartment that seems to be getting smaller and smaller each day of this quarantine.

A Vision Board is a creative process to set clear intentions and goals for what you want in your life to  grow and transform yourself.

To start a vision board:
1. Create a Pinterest board and make it private.

2. Organize your thoughts
Get clear on your goals. Goals are in all aspects of our life - friends, family, relationships, career, fitness, well-being, finances, life, hobbies, home, travel,
TIP: Don't rush this step. Think about it all aspects of your life and who you really wanted to be or do. This should be something you feel, and see yourself embody.

3. Collect Images for your Vision Board
In the search bar, put words or phrases, images, colors, patterns of things that you want to accomplish or that inspire you. For example, I want to live in an RV. At first it was because my husband worked in baseball and we were moving so often to me it made sense. Let's get an RV and make monthly payments towards that instead of all these down deposits, etc. Now I see if as living simple. Living with less, and that has become important to me. So I would look for a photo on Pinterest that's similar to the one i want.
TIP: It's great to have material things, but also include how to do you want to feel.

4. Create Your Vision Board
After you have enough images that represent who you are and what you want to accomplish. it's time to create the board. I love Canva, but there are so many apps available to help arrange the photos. Canva is great because if you have the upgraded version you can format it any size. This will be nice when you are want to display it.
TIP: CanvaPro or magazines to create your vision board

5. Displaying your Vision Board
Now the board is done you should place it where you constantly see it. Currently, I have my smaller version of my vision board on my apple watch. Every time I take a look it reminds of what my goals are. It also brings things back to focus for me.

It's important that you don't all the work and then place it in the closet or just forget about it. Place it somewhere that's important to you. Look at it daily. Feel each image like you have already accomplished it.

I often use my vision board when doing visualization exercises in the morning. I visualize myself in the RV, travelling and being my own boss. Imagine this is already your life.

What's on your vision board?

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