Monday Motivation: One Bite at a Time!

Happy, happy Monday! I’ve got to admit that when the alarm went off at 4:10 this morning, I wished that Mondays really were optional ha! But I sucked it up and got up and got going.

After a lot of conviction and nudging from God, I set out last week to be more productive with my days. I am all about a “lazy” day, but I had let myself get to a place where I was having more lazy days than non lazy days. I am, by nature, a very disciplined person but I am also a huge procrastinator.

I found my days sitting around, looking at my phone and then looking at the clock and an hour had gone by. I began to feel God telling me that I was not being a good steward of my time. I put things on the back burner because in my mind I didn’t have the time, but in reality, I wasn’t making the time.

I always know when God is speaking to me when everything points to the same thing. In my devotional and book I am reading, it talked about habits and doing the hard things. In the message yesterday our pastor reminded us that we make time for things that are important to us. It was definitely a “ok God, I get it already,” moment.

So last week I set out to be productive and I wanted to share with you what I did in hopes that maybe it will help and encourage you.

The first thing I did was wake up and get up when the alarm went off. I forced myself to not hit the snooze button. Some days were definitely easier than others. I decided that I would wake up at 4:10 so that I could do my “blaire strength” workout and then make sure that I could have my quiet time before waking Mackenzie up to start her day. I reminded myself that I would be so happy that I got it in early and didn’t have to find the time later in the day.

I had my quiet time everyday. This is a non-negotiable for me. It is a must. My time with God is something that I desperately need everyday. I love devotionals that I can do each day, but they are so hard to find. The one I am currently doing is called, Take Back Your Life by Levi Lusko. Y’all, it has been such a game changer for me. It goes right along with what God has been showing me lately and I look forward to it each day. If you are looking for a devotional, I definitely recommend this one. I am also reading his wife’s book, The Fight to Flourish. I try to read a couple of chapters a day, but some days I only have time for a couple of pages. I feel that they compliment each other very well.

The other thing that I set out to do each day was to go back to making lists. I love lists because they keep me on task. And I love marking things off when I complete them. Every night I would pull out my calendar and see what I had going the next day. I would write my to-do list, schedule for the day and lists of items I needed to pick up that day. I found myself forgetting things all the time… making these lists helped so much. I also took the list with me so that I could stay on task when out and about. So often I will get somewhere and completely forget an item. It also helped me drive my day verses the day driving me. I stayed in control and I was productive.

I made my bed every day! A bed made makes for a better day ha! At least in my book. My mom is huge about this and I am too. Something about a bed made just makes me feel more put together and like I accomplished something.

I did 1-2 loads of laundry daily and folded and put away each one right then. I hate laundry. Not so much doing laundry… I hate putting it away so it piles up. We will have loads of clean laundry that are folded in a laundry basket in my room and I was just so over it. So I forced myself each day to put it away. Y’all, it was crazy how everything in me wanted to leave it there because I swore I would do it later. It’s the procrastinator trying to take over ha! But I fought it and forced myself to do it. It was so nice to start the week caught up on laundry!

Last but not least and so important was that I gave myself lots of GRACE. I am an all or nothing gal so often times I just don’t do something because I can’t do it all at once and I find myself overwhelmed. It’s easier to not do it than to do it if that makes sense. I took the eating the elephant approach. You’ve probably heard this analogy. You eat the elephant one bite at a time. Many times we don’t do the hard stuff because we are so overwhelmed that we don’t know where to start. Just start! One step at a time. I was so behind on laundry when I started the week and normally I would get overwhelmed, but instead I just started it and gave myself small goals. I did the same with other tasks. I reminded myself that small steps towards a big goal are better than no steps at all. And on the night when I was so exhausted and went to bed instead of putting away the dishes from dinner that night, I gave myself lots of grace the next morning and thanked God for extra sleep the night before. A grateful heart always keeps me in a positive mindset.

I know all of these are practical things, but they are what helped me get myself back on the productive wagon. I have seasons where I completely fall off and that was the season I was in. These small little habits helped get me back on track. Will I fall off again? Absolutely! I am human, we all are. Nobody is perfect and life happens! But when I fall off, I will get back on again and I will be ok. Grace, grace!

You may find yourself in a funk. Looking at your day at night wondering what you got done or wondering where all your time went. You may also be like me and spend way too much time on your phone when you could be doing something else like laundry ha! That was me! This week I tried to set a timer when I would start to scroll social media and it worked! It kept me on track and once the timer went off, I would grab my book and read instead.

A verse that I’ve had on my mind has been, Colossians 3:23-24 that says,

“Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for human masters, since you know that you will receive an inheritance from the Lord as a reward. It is the Lord Christ you are serving.”

I’ve reminded myself as I do the laundry and my daily chores that feel so mundane that I am doing them with all my heart working for the Lord. It has helped change my perspective and my heart when I pick up someone’s shoes for the hundredth time! As a mom we can look at our tasks as mundane and not important, but they absolutely are. We serve God as we serve our family and doing the laundry and cooking dinner is serving our family. This crazy season isn’t going to last forever and one day the laundry won’t be as bad because it’ll only be you and your husband. One day the dinner table will be just you and your husband because the kiddos are grown and in their own homes. So embrace this moment and do all things as you would do them for the Lord!

I hope this encourages someone today. Remember to not be so hard on yourself. Take small steps towards your big goals instead of no steps at all and do all things as you are doing them for God.

I hope you all have a wonderful Monday! XO

Embracing Every Season

Every morning this week I’ve been sharing a picture of my coffee mug with a quote from something I read during my quiet time. I started the week determined to get my morning routine back and be more productive with my days. I’ve been so convicted about my habits and how I spend a lot of time on my phone. I am a very disciplined person, but I am also a huge procrastinator. When you mix that with my all or nothing attitude, it can be a recipe for disaster. I really have felt God teaching me during this season that I need to be more productive with my time.

The last couple of weeks, I’ve been working with my trainer on not being so hard on myself when I am not at a 100%. Life happens and we can’t always have those perfect days. I’ve had a lot going on since I started working with her and at times I’ve almost told her we will try again at a later time when life isn’t crazy. But seriously….when isn’t life going to be crazy?! She reminded me that being consistently good enough is better than doing absolutely nothing. I’ve really taken that to heart and have practiced giving myself lots and lots of grace.

As I started the week, I decided to go back to list making. This keeps me on track and helps me be more productive. Not to mention the success I feel to mark things of my list feels so good ha! It’s helped so much and I have found myself getting things done this week. But let me tell you, I’ve been so tired by the end of the day. I even told Joseph yesterday how being productive is great, but gosh it’s exhausting.

This morning I didn’t have to do a my “Blaire Strength” as I call my workouts from my trainer lol! So I knew that I could sleep in a little longer. Of course, I slept in a lot longer than I hoped and found myself rushing to get downstairs to get in a little bit of my quiet time before having to wake Mackenzie up. As I went to take the picture of my mug, I noticed the background full of the dishes I couldn’t bring myself to put away last night and the dishes from this morning in the sink. I almost moved my mug to a more “picture perfect” location, but then I thought about my reading for the day and chose to post the real instead of the staged.

In The Fight to Flourish by Jennie Lusko she wrote about being present in the moment and immersing ourselves in the season that we’re in right now. You know, it got me thinking about how exhausted I’ve been at the end of each day and how hard it can be to adult some times. Life is crazy at our house right now with three kids in three different sports going three different directions. Some days I wonder if this season will ever end, but this morning I realized I needed to embrace this season. I can’t be perfect, the dishes will still be there some days and that’s ok. Grace, grace right?!

I love how Jennie puts it in her book,

“If you’re in a season that feels insignificant or especially long, look up. Set your gaze on who Jesus is. Ask God to help you see this season differently. Remember, you’re already living from the finish line, but you’re still in the middle of the process right now. This time in your life is part of the soil that is enriching your life and your future. Be here now.

When we engage in the daily fight and embrace the present moment, we will flourish. It’s the little wins that change the course of our lives. We can live and love in the small moments of our everyday lives, knowing that there’s an eternal significance to whatever God has called us to. So, when you’re feeding your baby in the middle of the night and feeling run down by sleep deprivation. Take a mental Instagram photo of that moment. Your baby is not going to eat like that at night forever. Or, if you’re tired of being single and want to find your soulmate, remember you won’t always have the kind of time you do currently. Savor where you are right now.”

Yes, some days are long but it’s true that the days are short. This season isn’t going to last forever and I find myself thinking about that a lot lately. Having two in middle school with one going to high school next year has really made me realize how fast time flies. So I will embrace this season and the exhaustion that it brings. I will celebrate those little wins and live and love in the small moments of my everyday life because there is an eternal significance to what I’m doing. And the same goes for you! You may not be 100% everyday, but that doesn’t mean you get to give up! Look up, look to Jesus! Find your strength in Him and ask Him to help you see your current season in a different way. It’s not going to last forever and it’s preparing you for the next season of life!

So here’s a picture of my coffee mug with my mess in the background to prove to you that I don’t always have it all together, but I am going to choose to embrace it and enjoy it!

I hope you have a terrific Thursday!

-Maggie

If You Look Good, You Feel Good

Good morning everyone!  I hope you are having a wonderful Thursday.  We’ve had a super busy week around here and it does not seem like it is slowing down any time soon.

Our crossfit box is doing a competition this month to celebrate our ONE year anniversary.  We’ve had so much fun!  Athletes are excited, they are lifting heavier, running faster, jumping on boxes, rope climbing.  I am so proud of all of them and super thankful for our community.

I shared a little bit about how this community motivates me every day and helps get me out of a fitness slump.  You can read a little bit about that here.  It’s so important to have friends who will motivate you and keep you accountable.

As a coach, many times I have to go in to do my workout in between classes.  As someone who is used to working out with friends, it’s hard getting it done by myself.  Don’t get me wrong, I love a good run with my headphones on and favorite tunes playing.  But when it comes to crossfit, I love my workout buddies.

There is so much that motivates me to workout, but today I am talking about one of my favorite things.

Workout clothes!

Yes you read that right!  Since this is my daily attire, I own a lot of workout clothes.  Ask my hubby who insists that I don’t need anymore. In which I respond, you can never have too much ha!

I am faithful to the brands I have come to love. My list is short because I’m pretty picky when it comes to my workout attire.  It needs to pass the test of being comfortable, durable and most importantly it needs to be cute.  Let’s face it you look good, you feel good right?

I have shared my love for Lululemon, but today I want to tell you about another one of my favorite brands.

Born Primitive

My best friend and business partner, Staci is an ambassador and is the one who introduced me to the brand.  It took some time before I finally ordered some of their very popular booty shorts, but after I tried them on I knew why Staci loved them so much.

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Not only are they comfortable, they have a longer inseam to keep you covered and they don’t ride up when you are working out.  They have all kinds of fun patterns to choose from.  These are their Halloween shorts that I am absolutely in love with!  Aren’t they adorable?  I think they are sold out, but be on the look out because Christmas ones are coming.  These shorts are not only for crossfit.  You can wear them to yoga, boot camp, weightlifting, running and of course hanging out around the house.

Now ladies, let’s talk sport bras.  So I have to admit.  I was quickly sold on the booty shorts, but I just couldn’t convince myself to spend the money for a sports bra.  Let’s just say…shame on me for waiting this long!  Y’all.  You all need a Born Primitive sports bra.  Trust me on this one.  This is the most comfortable sports bra I’ve bought.  It fits perfectly and doesn’t feel like it’s cutting off my circulation.  It gives me the support I need while working out because that is super important.  You ladies know what I’m talking about.  Our girls need support ha!img_7112-1

Sports bras and booty shorts are not the only items they sell.  They recently added yoga pants and have a great variety of tanks, long sleeve shirts and sweatshirts.  I love that you can wear them to the gym and around town running errands.  They also have a men’s line for all the guys out there.

I love Born Primitive not only for their clothing line, but also for what they stand for.  You can read all about it here, but I wanted to share this quote from their page:

“Born Primitive was created for the modern savages out there who reject this notion and refuse to accept the mediocrity that society now fosters. Whether it’s at the gym or in life, our beliefs are simple. Set goals, relentlessly strive to achieve them, and never make excuses. Look people in the eye and give them a firm handshake. Your word is your bond. Throw your conventional limits out the window and realize your true potential.”

I just love that.  Don’t settle for mediocrity folks.  Set goals and fight to achieve them.  Not only in your fitness, but in all aspects of life.  Reach for the stars.  Don’t give up and fight to the end.

And lastly, I love Born Primitive because they give back.  You can read all about the charities they support here.  Ladies you need to go and buy their Bright Pink Edition Vitality Sports Bra.  During the month of October they are donating $10 for every Pink Splash Bra directly to Bright Pink.

I love a brand that gives back!

So there you have it why I love Born Primitive.  Now go online and start shopping and use my BFF’s code: Sanders15 for 15% off.

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“Fit is not a destination.  It is a way of life.”

-Maggie

 

Monday Motivation: Fitness Edition

Good Monday morning friends!  I hope you all had a fabulous weekend.  Fall break is over and back to school the kids go.

I’ve been on the struggle bus the last week or so with my workouts and nutrition. I had surgery at the beginning of August and took about six weeks off.  The break was nice and much-needed, but it’s time to get busy.  Getting back into a workout routine or starting a new routine is hard.

Growing up I wasn’t much of an athlete.  I played basketball and soccer, but I wasn’t the best.  I was always one of the slower ones and to be honest I just wasn’t very good!

I spent my summer mornings working out in a sweat suit to my mom’s Jazzercise videos ha!  That was the extent of working out for me and the way I got rid of those extra pounds I put on during the summer.

During my twenties I got married, had babies, battled anxiety and depression so exercise wasn’t even on my mind.  I wish I would’ve lived a more active lifestyle back then.  But I’ve learned that it’s never too late to start.

After I had Mackenzie, my crazy hubby decided to train for a half-marathon.  Not really knowing what that was, I didn’t want to be left out, so I decided to train too.  I will never forget that first mile I set out to do.  Y’all.  Bless my heart.  I mean I thought in my head that running couldn’t be THAT hard.  Yeah…let’s just say it took me about 30 minutes to get through a mile and a half.  I remember thinking what the heck did I agree to?  I can’t even make it two miles how am I going to make it 13.1?

I set my mind on my goal and fought through the hard days.  I gave myself small goals and developed a good routine of getting up early to run.  I had three kids under four so waking up at 6:30-ish was the only time I had.

I slowly began to enjoy it.  It was my time to focus on myself and prepare my mind for the day.  I remember the first time I ran an entire mile without stopping.  I danced and danced on the side of the road not caring one bit what people thought of me as they drove by.  As the weeks went by, I added more miles and then found myself running anywhere from 7-8 miles on a Saturday morning.  I loved it!

I was hooked to the rush, the endorphins, the feeling of accomplishing something I never thought I could do.

Years later Joseph and I began CrossFit and that was a game changer for both of us.  I know CrossFit isn’t for everyone, but sometimes I think that a lot of people have a skewed view of it.  CrossFit has given me the strength and endurance to do life!  A farmers carry is like carrying all my grocery bags into my house and a deadlift has taught me how to correctly pick up something heavy.  I’m not trying to get you to come to CrossFit, but I totally am partial and think you should ;).

Going through a slump or wanting to get started can be overwhelming.  We’ve convinced ourselves that we can’t do it or aren’t athletic enough.  It is a mental game and overcoming your mind is step 1.

This morning I want to encourage you to get active.  Whether you are going through a fitness hiatus or you are trying to get started-here are a couple of helpful things that I do to help get me back on the fitness wagon.

SET GOALS AND CRUSH THEM

Setting goals is a must for me.  I work better under pressure and with a plan and goal in mind.  I am a list girl.  I love to write lists, but even more I love crossing things off my lists.  Setting goals and accomplishing them is so satisfying and empowering.

I mentioned overcoming your mind is step 1.  Once you do that-set out a plan.  What do you want to accomplish?  Do you want to run a certain amount of miles?  Do you want to lean out and tone?  Or do you just want to be active.

Give yourself a goal of 30 minutes a day.  Run/jog/walk for 30 minutes.  Each week increase those 30 minutes by 5-10 minutes.  Don’t think about the miles.  The miles will come.

When I started running I tried the apps where they told me when to run and walk.  They didn’t work for me.  Instead I listened to music and set out to run as far as I could.  Once I felt like I couldn’t run any longer I would walk and give myself a marker on the road such as a garbage can, street sign or bush.  Once I reached that marker, I would run again.  I slowly began to run longer and walked less.

Breathing while running is super important.  I taught my athletes in the 6:45 morning class to think about Lamaze class.  The “hee hee hoo” breathing technique I called it ha!  Getting your breathing under control will help lots!

For those going through a hiatus-give yourself a goal of a certain number of days you want to get in for the week.  If you are a runner-set out to run three days a week.  If you go to a fitness class do the same.  Set out a number of days and increase a day each week.  Before you know it, you will be back at it.  Muscle memory is great and you will realize that after a couple of weeks you are close to where you were when you quit.

Schedule Your Day

Go ahead and schedule your workout.  Put it in your planner or phone.  Set that time aside.  As moms it’s hard finding time.  I’ve found that early mornings are best for me.  It stinks getting up early at first, but your body gets used to it.  Set out your clothes the night before, go to bed early and set your alarm.

Sometimes afternoons are then only time that works and that’s ok too.  Mom’s with older kiddos-go for a walk during practice or bring your yoga mat and dumbbells with you.  I’m sure there’s a mom or two that would join you!

A little sidenote here….do not feel bad for setting this time aside.  Absolutely not.  We are working on us so that we can be better wives, moms and friends.   I am a better person when I am working on me.  I used to feel bad for bringing my kids to the gym with me.  Not anymore.  It is ONE hour of their day and it isn’t hurting them to sit and let mommy have her time.  Before you know it they will want to join you.  You are setting a good example of being active.  I love that my kids want to workout with me.

Moms-be encouraging to one another.  If working out isn’t your thing don’t put those that do down.  We are all different.  Our seasons are different.  Our priorities and our lives are different.  And that is ok!  You do you and I’ll do me.

Ok.  Sidenote over.

Find a Support System

One of my favorite things about CrossFit is my people.  My community, my tribe.  I look forward to going to class and when I’m not there I get a text asking me where I was.  A good support system of encouraging friends is a must.

CrossFit may not be for you-no hurt feelings.  But find something that is.  Whether it’s meeting to run with friends, a spin class, yoga or boot camp.  There are so many different ways to stay active.  Find which one works for you and do it.  But most importantly, find a place that will encourage, motivate and push you.  A place where coaches will be there to help you and teach you correct form and technique.

I’m partial, but my community is the bomb.com.  These friends have gone through so much with me.  Sickness, death, hardships, anxiety, issues with kiddos…  I am who I am because of these folks.  They are my tribe and I am so thankful for them.

So are you ready?  Set some goals girlfriend, believe in yourself, plan your day and find a tribe that will push you.

But above all-GRACE, GRACE, GRACE.

Do not quit if you miss a workout.  If the kiddos are sick and you haven’t done anything in days-do not let your mind convince you that all your hard work is ruined.  Get back on that wagon and hold on.  You can do anything you set your mind on.  I believe it.  I’ve lived it.  And you can too.

I hope you have a wonderful Monday.  The alarm is going off and it’s time to wake up the kiddos.

-Maggie