How to Reach Your New Year’s Health Goals

How to Reach Your New Year’s Health Goals

Wow, it’s been to long since I’ve written. There’s been a lot going on, but I thought this would be a great first post for the new year. By the way, one of my goals is to blog more this year. But anyway, let’s talk about your health for a moment.

I see a lot of my friends and family members make New Year’s resolutions year after year, and year after year I watch people fall off the wagon so to speak.

Well, there’s a reason this happens to almost anyone. In this post, I’ll be sharing some of the most effective tips that I’ve personally used to stay on track with reaching and surpassing my health goals each year.

Set S.M.A.R.T. Goals

This type of goal setting gets people results every time!

Specific –  What will you accomplish? Examples: Do 50 pushups by the end of the month. Lose 20 pounds in 4 months time.

Measurable – How will you track your progress? Use a food and exercise journal. There are even lots of printables and apps you can use!

Assignable – Who will take on this task (you)? Remember, no one else can decide to be health for you, not your trainer, not your spouse, not your friends. You decide to make healthy choices for you!

Realistic – What can you do today to work towards your goal? If you can’t do that 100-squat challenge, then don’t throw in the towel, just figure out what a reasonable goal is that will eventually get you to your goal. Maybe 10 squats today is a great start?

Time-oriented – How long will it take you to reach a goal which contains the other four characteristics? If you want to lose 10 pounds, and you have a lot of weight to lose, as in over 50 pounds, it might only take you a month. But if you’re just trying to lose the last 10 pounds, that might take 2 months. You know your body. You know your strengths and weaknesses.

Create a Plan

If you don’t know what you need to do to get to your destination, then you will wander aimlessly, become frustrated, and then eventually give up. Use a fitness journal; plan your menu for the week. These are simple things you can do to keep yourself on track. Use the resources available to you. One of the most common phrases I’ve heard is, “But I want to do this by myself.”

Allow me to educate you: you need the support of others. Take it from someone who’s lost 40 pounds in college, and is now successfully losing the baby weight. Ask the professionals. They’ve had to spend countless hours studying research methods on how to reach various types of goals. Swallow that pride and ask questions. Your support network will keep you motivated when you’ve hit a plateau. Trust me, I’ve been there, and I’m a fitness pro, so you just heard from both sides of the story.

Reward Yourself

When you reach a milestone, reward yourself, and also, stop beating yourself up every time you make a mistake. But, let’s avoid food as a reward in most cases, okay?

You’ve got this. You can ace your health goals for the new year, and enjoy life too. I’m here to answer your questions, and know that when you put your mind to something, you can make it happen.



Be on the lookout for my ebook on health and fitness goal setting, available with printable worksheets. Coming to Amazon on January 30!



Motivation Monday: My Journey Over the Past Year

Hi There!
It’s been a looooooong time since I’ve written. I started a new job during Christmas so things were a little hectic, and I’m so thankful to be back in the swing of writing again! I’ve really missed blogging, and I’ve missed having a regular routine for the past few weeks!
at the end of 2013 I set some goals for myself in 2014, and I wanted to recap those goals and let you know where I’m at on my journey today. Some are fitness related, some  are non-fitness related, but they were all areas of my life that I felt could use some improvement, and these goals challenged me.

1. Be more consistent with quiet time. Sometimes this meant choosing between something else I wanted to watch/do, but it was totally worth it. I started keeping a prayer journal again, and have really enjoyed turning off the radio when I’m driving and spending that time praying instead. Scripture says, “Be anxious for nothing, but in everything, by prayer and supplication, let your requests be made known to God.” This is the best stress relief. God can handle my problems far better than I can.
2. This is going to sound completely different: do more cardio. I’m happy to report that now I average 2-3cardio sessions each week. I really like doint intervals, and cardio dvd’s, like 21 Day Fix – Cardio Fix or Plyo Fix.
 3.  Do more upper body strength training. I can actually do full push-ups now and beast the monkey bars! This was really tough to begin with, but over the past year, I’ve noticed significant strength gains, which PiYo helped with Tremendously.
4. Traveling. This year, we’ve traveled more often than we have in the past 2 years combined. Granted, we didn’t go on an African safari, but we managed to take some day trips on our weekends off and get much needed time away several on weekends.
5. Going back to school. While i haven’t gone back to school yet, I have gotten recertified in PiYo Live, and taken several courses in health coaching, which ties into what I’d eventually like to get a second Bachelor’s in I have changed industries a little in the past year from wellness to banking, which is my day job now, but I also like the finance field, so you just never know where I may end up. I would like to earn a more elite certification in coaching though, so we’ll see…

Some things I’d like to work on over the next year are:

1. Reading through the entire Bible in 1 year.
2. Organizing decorating our environment – we live in a fixer-upper. I have plans
3. Perfecting my blog business plan, take some courses and design some supplemental courses for my Beachbody Biz. I’m working on publishing 2 short e-books this year.
4. Pay off 1 student loan.
5. ….well, I”ll leave this one blank. 😉

What are some things you’d like to accomplish this year? Do you ever write out the steps you need to take in order to reach those goals? I do. Be specific. And share a goal with me in the comments below!

Jeremiah 29:11-13 For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.  Then you will call on me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart.

Thoughtful Thursday: Pushups, Vision Boards, and Creating a Routine

Hi Everyone,
Today’s post was meant for Wednesday, but time definitely escaped me. LOL…AKA, I had to go to work. I’ve felt motivated and driven to get a lot done this week, like expanding my business, finish an e-cookbook, etc. Wait, finish an e-cookbook? Yes, I’ve been carrying this around in my brain for months, and am now finally getting around to implementing it; it’s actually a recipe collection. This is collection of clean recipes for non-chefs, aka, people who want to eat healthier, but don’t have time to cook lots of gourmet recipes that taste great. The recipes are simple, easy to follow, and pretty cheap for the most part. There’s a little of everything there. So, I accomplished one of my long term goals this week. It feels amazing!!! Speaking of goals, remember that post I did about one of my fitness goals for the new year was to gain more upper body strength and do different types of pushups….well, guess what…it happened. This goal is definitely a work in progress still, and will always be because fitness is a journey, not a destination. But here’s a progess report on video:

This is definitely not my strong suit, no pun intended. But in order to reach those goals, I had to come up wih a plan that pushed me outside my comfott zone. 
I know I publish a lot of individual workouts. Here’s what my workout schedule has been this week:

My last and final pic is something that is also a work in progress. I’ve been working on my vision board this week. I’m still adding pics to this it reflects goals from different areas of my life, spiritually, physically, financially, etc.

Sorry but it won’t let me flip the image. So, I know this seems like a random hodge podge of pics but a lot of these areas reflect areas that are a challenge for me. There’s one pic in particular that has lot of meaning to me. It’s the picture of the child. Yes, the child has a cleft palate. For the past 5 years, I’ve wanted to adopt….not just any baby, but a baby that maybe no one else wants because of a cleft palate. I want to pay for the surgeries, so that child will not have to deal with teasing, and malnutrition anymore, and adopt them. Bring that child home, and give them a family to belong to. I think it’s ridiculous that these kids get passed over because everyone else wants “normal” children. I want to write a book….more on that later…As for Isaiah 58:11, look it up. If you know how difficult our job situations have been for the past year, you’ll know why I’m holding on to this verse. What are your goals? Do you have a vision? I would like to challenge you to dream big. Stop letting everyone else’s opinions rule your life, so you can have the opportunity to bless others!

– Julie

5 Things You Should Know Before Hiring a Coach or Trainer

Today is Thoughtful Thursday! I’ve gotten lots of emails this month about people wanting to know how they can get a wellness coach or personal trainer to work with them. Maybe you have a trainer or coach, well this post is still for you. Here are 5 pointers on how to gain/maintain a very valuable relationship and will tell you what to look for in a coach or a trainer. Also know that if your trainer or coach doesn’t listen your concerns at all or is constantly tardy/unprofessional, it might be time to look for another one. When you hire a fitness professional, this is what you’re getting into.

1. Understand that your trainer/coach has invested many hours, and in the case of the very experienced trainer, years in order to help their clients reach their goals. I know some trainers do have ego issues, but if yours is someone who has possibly gone to college for their education, (like I have), do not ask them if their price points and then get all sulky and non-committal when they tell you. A good trainer is certainly not free. What if you spent hours on the job only to discover that you weren’t getting paid because your boss didn’t feel like they wanted to pay your wages? That’s what I thought. Respect your trainer’s time and investment, and I assure you, they will respect yours. Know that if you want to reach your dream goals and beyond, you will have to spend money. “A dream without a plan of action and committment is just a wish.”

2.  Be teachable. Ok, so no one knows your body like you do. Understand this…there is a major difference between muscle soreness and real pain. “Unless you have real pain, do not complain.” Tell the truth about your limitations, and a qualified trainer/coach will understand and honor them, but complaning because you don’t like to get on the mat and do planks, when you have the physical ability to do planks doesn’t count. Yes, we will try to prescribe exercises you like, but there’s a very good reason to why we chose the exercises that we did. There is a science to this.  Because we care, we push you. Why did you hire a trainer? Because they have a skill set you need in order to reach your goals.  My policy is, “Praise in public, reprimand in private.” Also if you have a trainer, you don’t like their communication style, settle that with them before you complain to a different trainer and say you’re going to commit to them. A good coach/trainer  will provide you access/opportunities to resources that will empower you and not make you and not make your dependent on them.

3. If you’ve found a trainer, coach you love. Support their business by giving specific referrals.Write a review for their website. They have to pay bills too. I have a client/graduate  whoehas fed me referrals for 2 solid years, and I’m eternally  grateful to her. When I was putting my hubby through school, and money was super tight, those referrals were the reason I had business in the slow times.

4. If  we tell you we use a product, and you see results, then it’s safe to assume that we’re not just affiliated with that product for the money….it works for us….who better to get a product recommendation from right…? Trainers are the hardest  sells of all, and good trainers know what goes into a product and why it works for them. You didn’t ask because it was cheap…you asked because it works…

5. Be on time and always confirm your attendance for sessions and classes. You would be mad if you invested hours of time into your wedding, and all you got from potential guests were “maybe’s”. The same is true of your trainer/coach. Don’t waste their time. Most gyms and trainers have an attendance policy…mine is two no-show’s and you’re off my roster…permanently. This problem is so bad in my area that I decided to do online coaching and not waste my gas or put miles on my car. If you’re going to be late, then call if possible. We understand emergencies come up…but “I don’t feel like it.” doesn’t count. A biblical principle I try to live by is “Let your ‘yes’ be ‘yes’ and your ‘no’ be ‘no'”.

I hope this post helps you understand the committments involved in finding the right trainer/coach for you. These points are written based on real-life experience, and what I look for in my clients. In other words,  follow the golden rule. I understand that there are “shark” trainers out there, and  they give the rest of us a bad wrap, but I try to walk with integrity with my clients, and I know many other trainers who try to do the same. This post was written on their behalf. 🙂

Thanks for listening as always!

– Julie
Curious about what Julie does for her workouts?

Monday Motivation: Fitness Goals

Hi there! So now that we’ve recooperated from Christmas…(I wish.) It’s time to gear up for New Year’s. I’ve been thinking about my goals for the past month, and I’ve got some humdingers.Here are a few in no particular order.
1. Be more consistent with quiet time. I’ll confess I want spent more quality time with the Lord. This is my sanity, and in recent years, I’ve been a little slack.
2. This is going to sound completely different: do more cardio. (See, I said they weren’t in any particular order.) I’m not exactly known as a cardio junkie, but it’s good for my heart, and it will ramp up my weight lifting results a lot. Not going cardio crazy but 3x a week for 30-45 minutes is a nice place to start. I would lift weights until I pass out, I know I need to improve my cardiovascular health.
3. Do more upper body strength training. Ok, so I don’t mind working shoulders, and I know how…but biceps and triceps are not my favorite. So this year, I’m headed…to the gun show! Just kidding. But some major upper body strength gains would be nice. I’ll be bumping up my upper body workouts to 2x/week.
4. Traveling. So, I’ve been wanting to do some major traveling for years. Like trekking through Norway in snow shoes kind of traveling, and Norway is on my bucket list. The reason for this is that’s where a lot of my ancestors are from, and Micah’s always wanted to visit. We might not get to that this year, but the saving up for that trip will start now. We also want to go on an overseas mission trip together.
5. Going back to school. I’ll begin working on my nutrition and human dietetics degree in the fall. I’m super excited to be going back to school, and praying for the grace to do so. I plan to finish my degree in two semesters, so it’ll be crazy, but so worth it!

There’s some of my top 5 goals! What are your goals for 2014? I always break each goal down into baby steps, this makes it overwhelming, and lets me see how much closer I am to accomplishing a particular goal in a short amount of time. I have a few more, but shhhh! T

hey’re secrets. But I might write about them later…Write down your goals and create a vision board, so you’ll be reminded of what you want to accomplish.

Motivational Monday: what challenge do you face?

So, it was a tough week last week. Learned a lot, laughed a lot, and cried a lot, but definitely am better for it.If you haven’t figured out by now, it’s been a pretty rough six months for me. There, I thought I would just spell it out for you. It’s been difficult to get workouts in when you carry a lot of responsibility, but a word to my procrastinating friends, it is worth every second. Between all the fixer-upper projects around the house and Micah finishing school, some days, I feel like my brain and heart want to explode. One thing God has taught me through all this is perseverance, and to keep pressing on, no matter what anyone else says, what He says matters more. Here we are, 20 days from the finish line, and I look at how many prayers have been answered, how many tears have been shed, and how much this time of growth has been a blessing. My challenge to you this week is look your obstacle straight in the eye. Stop pretending it’s not there, stop trying to get around it; work through it. It could be not wanting to confront an eating habit that is wrecking your health. It could be not making any time to exercise. Whatever it may be, you can either decide to give up, or you can become stronger through it. My next advice is practical. Write down steps to your goals. I’m not exactly perfect at executing these plans myself yet, but there are tools out there that can help you. Stop saying you can’t keep a planner or even write down long term goals. Just stop it. The book, Home School, High School, and Beyond by Beverly Adams-Gordon has great resources, not just for high schoolers, but for anyone who needs a little direction, I’m an artsy type, so I need a lot of it. She helps you break down your long-term goals into short-term goals of 5 years, 2 years, 1 year, 6 months, and quarterly goals, and even weekly goals. My point is, it is worth the time, effort, and resources, to look at ways to overcome obstacles. There are tons of organizational forms on Pinterest. There is something out there that will suit your unique personality, but the first step is just do something, even if it involves notebook paper and a pencil, start writing down what you want to accomplish. It’s worth it. Hiding does not make the obstacle your facing go away, but creating a battle plan helps you to overcome it. There, that’s my motivational soapbox for the week. Anything worth having is worth working hard for.