Friday, June 27, 2014

Obscene Flexibility Comes in Handy Yet Again - Not Your Everyday Trainer Girl

It's been a while since I've updated, but life has been far from uneventful. My Sailor came back from deployment and we've been getting re-acclimated to life around each other. No matter how much you love someone, time and distances changes people and dynamics, so we are finding our new stride, laying some demons to rest, and forging onward and upward. That new stride involves being an active family.

Vacation Pig Tails... best thinking handles ever

By most definitions, we're very active. While most submariners have been playing it close to home, resting, and catching up on movies, we have a different way of reconnecting. It's called "jumping in with both feet." He's been home one week today and it has included camping, hiking, white water rafting through category 5 rapids, near daily walks, and, yes, a little lifting. No hours of endless tv watching or fast food trips for us. He's basically on my eating style now (yeah!), and is a fantastic cook which makes dinner time more interesting.  My Sailor even let me teach him to Split Jerk the other day. He's a quick study and will no doubt have it perfected into a full clean and jerk in a couple weeks (if not on days).

So that done, I also got my 2nd interview with the local YMCA out of the way.
 It wasn't the slam dunk I was expecting, but it wasn't a slammed door either. All in all, it was an experience that helped me solidify the focus that I already have as a trainer and coach - and further solidified that I definitely have something unique to offer the YMCA arena. So now that I've tossed and turned over it for an entire evening, the summary is this: It's still a work in progress.  My interviewer got a few new movements she enjoyed. I got some constructive critiques that have been really useful in helping me solidify my style.

No doors are closed as this point. I've agreed to some further shadowing - there is something to learn from everyone, even those that don't subscribe to the strength and HIIT training world that has worked miracles for those in my life (myself included) - and another trial I'd like to schedule for mid-late July, depending on what happens going forward with My Sailor's leave schedule.  Never one to turn down education, I'll absorb what I can, incorporate what is appropriate, and move forward. After all, I can lift over 100 pounds over my head; what's a little hoop jumping, right?

Afterwards, I took some time to run and knocking out a few snatches and overhead squats to help process the unexpected result. I was a bit too nervous at the warm up which got in my way, but there were enough magical moments that I left reminded why I love being part of this coaching world. Even an interviewer who turned me down left the encounter with some added mobility and tools she can use - and I got to be a part of a few of magical moments she had as I got to see that "ah ha" moment when she was able to deepen her squat, enhance her mobility, and discover better balance and control. As I strapped myself back to my desk job when I got home (though disappointed and frustrated that it may last a bit longer than I had hoped), I get to be a part of making people's lives better, one day at a time, whether it's at the Y or elsewhere. The truth is...

I have a lot of stretches, work outs, and addictive moves that range from gymnastics to Power and Olympic Weight Lifting in my arsenal. There is a lot that I can help with, but I'll be more effective with some people than others. That's the intangibles of the business that keep me pushing forward. I can completely accept that. I'll continue to work to appeal to a wide pallet, but staying true to who I am is part of the package here. It's part of training with me. You get me - as a coach, partner, and team mate on the journey to your goals. You get a coach that will strive to attend those competitions, remind you of how far you've come, and remind you that you're probably stronger than you give yourself credit for. Most people are - especially those that struggle with being overweight. (It takes a lot of strength, emotionally, mentally, and physically to carry around that kind of weight - probably more than you realize! I remember it very well - feet and ankles that hurt even laying down, stiffness all the time, exhaustion, feeling as though the whole world was staring at me... I will never forget how bad all of that hurt - and the courage it took to change it, so I have a good idea where many people are coming from, and what courage it takes to come to someone else for help. I have the up most respect for it.)

If you want to grow stronger, challenge yourself, move better and more freely, feel better, and have a good time getting there, I might just be your Trainer Girl. 
  But that flavor of J not be right for everyone - that's okay. Heck, I go to at least 2-3 coaches/trainers a month myself! Each one is different. There is no "one size fits all". 

Should I be discouraged by not being an immediate "Yes"? Probably.

I have a background in theater and I've been an athlete. Rejection or falling short is nothing new to me. I'd never get anywhere if I give up at the first sign of resistance - especially in this case, when all other signs are positive.

Am I changing my path? Not entirely.  Just altering the timeline to get there a bit.

My Yodas continue to support me, and I legally now have my company, so this is a reality. The question is just where the home base will be - and if the Y wants ends up being part of that equation or not.

What keeps me encouraged is that this is a job I'm already doing and the proof I already have in my life that it's the right, positive move for me -

My Bride Jena - I didn't know her face to face until we met in Disneyworld just before Everest this May. By the time I met her, she'd already conquered the Boston Marathon and a number of other races. When it came to running, she was a veteran. But she wasn't seeing the changes she wanted. She'd been following me on a Disney Brides Facebook group and was fed up with counting calories, points, shakes, and other such programs. What she knew of my journey was that I run, jump, hand stand, lift weights, flip tires, and have seen strong results - and that I love coaching others. So I met her at her resort to go for a brief run and work out. Now, it takes a lot of guts to meet a complete stranger at 8am on vacation away from home, but it turned out to be one of the highlights of the trip. Since then we've been doing some distance training from time to time - and she's taken it into her world full force. I couldn't be more proud of this girl, her journey, and her mind set. It's not about fitting into 'the dress' for her. (Trust me; I know. I asked her.) She wants to be fit forever. (Her words and music to my ears!) And she's doing it. Day by day. Decision by decision, without weighing, measuring, and stressing about every portion of her life. Talk about someone inspiring.
Me, The Nurse, and My Bride
When asked what 2-3 things she learned from training with me, she responded with:
1.You give me the inspiration that there is more to fitness than the scale.
2. You help me strive to get out of my comfort zone every day.
3.Treat myself with respect.

 I really couldn't have asked to impart more on someone I've met face to face once, for about an hour...

The Nurse - After living and working out with me for a week prior to Everest, she has decided to incorporate my nutritional stance into her living routine. She didn't officially 'train' with me, but she got to see me in action - taking it on the road, and did a couple workouts that I lead while we were there. She and her husband are enjoying things like Chai seed pudding and grain-free living. But before she did all that, she signed up for a local 5k! Having been a personal trainer herself at one point (complete with Kinesology degree) she was a delight to work out with. Turkish Get Ups are now part of her arsenal, as are handstands, kettle bell swings, and a few other moves she gained while we 'vacationed' in Florida before the race. She took it all back to California with her and passed it on to her family. Who could ask for more than that?! I love getting random "Check out my awesome Paleo-friendly dinner!" texts.

Strong Girl  -

Me and Strong Girl - Broke our 1st place tie w/ a 400lb tire flip 60 yrds for time
My rival-turned-friend-turned-athlete-turned-rival-again (we'll be competing against each other in the Strongman competition this year)...When a local power lifting competition came up on her radar, she asked if I'd compete with her. Since I'm heavily focused on my own Oly training right now, I opted out of competing, but offered to coach her through some strength training. There was very little time before the competition so we opted to focus on 1 lift for improvement. She wanted to improve her deadlift, so off we went. We lifted 3-4 days a week, and it was a complete triumph. She went from a 250 lb deadlift, to a 301 lb deadlift in the span of about 2 1/2 weeks! It was a direct result of all the hard work she put in, and it renewed my faith in the Deadlift as a whole body muscle builder. You see, since the deadlift works the same muscles as the back squat, her back squat also increased 15 lbs! She stuck to the program and it paid off. When she hit that 301 lb deadlift, she jumped for joy and I'm not too proud to admit that I cried a little.
When asked what she took away from the experience:
1) Joining the 300 club
2) Improved form
3) The Value of having an extra set of eyes

When she started, she used a weight belt all the time. We trained largely without one (by her choice, once we discussed the pros and cons of it). Come competition day, she didn't have one, so it paid off and she hit a new Personal Record without a weight belt.  Weight belts have their uses, but it's always inspiring to see someone discover their body is capable of so much more than the mind gives it credit for. I'm so honored that I got to be a part of that day for her- and we had a great time during training (most of the time - hey, it's never all wine and roses when you're talking yourself into 'one more set').

Emily for 301 lbs on Competition Day
And those are just a few of the recent examples proving that I'm not in the wrong place at all.  In fact, when the weekend class gets canceled, several folks in the work out group look to me like "What now?" and that's taking on a life all its own.

While I'm hopeful the Y will be a home base for me, it is far from the end of the road, no matter how it pans out-
Sometimes you just have to climb a little higher 
and meet fate half way.

1 comment:

  1. My love,
    It is amazing what you have been able to accomplish in the short time that you have been training. You are an inspiration to many, including myself. If it wasn't for you I would of never taken the paleo plunge, as much as I can...stupid work, and you jave made me want to lead a healthier lifestyle. I know that I am not the only person who's life you have changed in a more positive note and that we won't be the last. I know it in my heart that you have finally found what you are meant to do and that you will continue to inspire many others to become healthier versions of themselves, both physically and mentally. I want you to know that I will be with you every step of the way and any way that I can help out I will. I love you so very much and here is to your continued success.