Laying my beliefs on the line…

I have been blogging on and off for the past 8 years. Through the many, MANY changing phases of my life.

I give advice. I share ideas based on research and experience. I try to motivate. I intend to educate. I open up a dialogue about health, wellness and real life.

After all these years, I have never really gone back in the vaults of my writing… Until today!

This old, yet revamped post caught my eye. It is a well-rounded list on what it means to ME to be a fitness professional. A wellness ambassador.

It divulges what I truly believe concerning health, fitness, nutrition, and wellness. I want to be transparent and honest with my readers. So, I’ve compiled a list of my basic CORE BELIEFS. I want to share my opinions and I encourage your comments.

Okay… Enjoy!

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– I believe that almost every common health problem can be linked back to insufficient activity, poor diet, and excessive stress (I mean… joint pain, muscle pain, weight issues, metabolic disturbances, heart problems, digestive problems, sleep issues, skin problems, etc, etc.)

I believe that the body was meant to move! It was meant to be challenged and pushed. And if we neglect to physically challenge our bodies, we will age more quickly, we will lose the ability to be physical, we will injure ourselves, we will become sick/diseased, and our bodies AND minds will break down.

– I believe that taking ibuprofen/advil/aspirin/alleve is NOT a beneficial form of treatment for physical pain. Medicine is simply like a band aid for pain. Soreness does not warrant pain killers. Pain from an injury or an imbalance should be dealt with by finding and treating the source of the pain – through corrective exercise, massage, soft tissue manipulation, chiropractic adjustments, dynamic movement, ice/heat, etc. (Pain killers are absolutely necessary in certain situations – don’t get me wrong – but people use them way too often to cover up the real issue at hand…)

I believe that medical doctors are important – in instances of emergency and trauma and in the diagnosis/treatment of disease or illness. But they should NOT be the go-to source in the promotion of fitness and proper nutrition. Doctors are very good at what they do, no doubt. But it is my experience that the vast majority do not have sufficient education in nutrition and exercise to give beneficial recommendations to the general public. (For one example, my doctors usually ask me for nutrition/fitness advice!) If medical doctors were the preventative health experts, then we’d see much less administration of medications and drugs for common health problems. We’d see them checking in on dietary and lifestyle behaviors to find the source of problems before medication ever enters the picture. Instead – qualified, experienced, knowledgeable fitness professionals, nutritional experts and holistic health care professionals should carry the responsibility for the re-education of the general public toward proper preventative health practices. And these professionals should work in concert with doctors – and many already do! 

– I believe that it’s never too late to become fit. Age is only a factor that determines how quickly you can transform… but it is in no way a deterrent. Physical activity is something that all ages should be involved in!

I believe that there is no limit to what you can accomplish, physically. People tend to put limits on themselves.

– I believe that exercise doesn’t have to be structured in order to be beneficial. Just go outside and move! Or put on some music and dance! (This is one I understand much better now as a mommy.)

Dancing is a major source of activity in our house ;)

Dancing is a major source of activity in our house 😉

I believe that embarking on a journey toward better health causes a ripple effect. Not just in one’s own life but also in the many lives surrounding him/her. Feeling good is infectious!

– I believe that too many folks miss out on the power of being strong because they are afraid to be uncomfortable and are afraid to fail. Or, they simply label themselves as “unable”. I don’t understand the act of prematurely labeling yourself before you even try… but I do understand fear of the unknown. And I respect an individual that will at least attempt to reach his/her potential or try something new in the physical world.

I believe that there is no good excuse. Excuses hold you back from accomplishment. They are a way to justify and hide behind your fears. Now, I’m not gonna suggest that excuses should never happen… We are only human, of course! But if you really want to accomplish something, no excuse will stand in your way of that pursuit.

– I believe that people don’t realize how atrocious “normal” nutritious practices have become. When a way of eating becomes commonplace, people don’t question it as much. Or they justify that how they’re eating is somehow okay (because everyone else does it).

I also believe that the vilification of certain foods has gone a little overboard. Gluten is not inherently evil and dairy should not necessarily be “avoided at all costs”. I could go on, of course. But instead I’ll say this… Some people have sensitivities or intolerances to certain foods while others do not. Some people have underlying diseases which require them to be careful with food choices. Every person reacts to food differently. Some people can eat a bit of bread and cheese with no problems! It’s up to each individual to discover how different foods affect him/her – how to eat in order to THRIVE. Plus, when all is said and done, it’s good to have all that info about the nutritional quality of food and how it affects us.  But… we do NOT have to eat perfectly in order to be healthy. ‘Nuff said.  

– I believe that mainstream consumer products and foodstuffs should be avoided or minimized. Heavily marketed brands of cleaning products, beauty products and boxed food are filled with copious amounts of hormone-altering chemicals, carcinogenic pesticides/herbicides, heavy metals, harsh irritants, and unnecessary ingredients. The accumulation of these toxins in the body can cause serious health issues (think: hormone imbalances and neurobehavorial problems, obesity, diabetes and cancer). There are plenty of cleaning products that are safe for the environment AND your home. There are numerous beauty products that omit sulfates, silicones, phthalates, parabens, dyes, aluminum, etc, etc. There are endless brands of packaged foods that have a simple list of recognizable ingredients and don’t use unnecessary preservatives and artificial components. There are safe ALTERNATIVES… But it takes a little bit of extra effort to seek out these brands. The good news is… once you find ’em, it’s easy to find ’em again.

I believe that too many fitness professionals just regurgitate antiquated ideas. They don’t question the common trainer “script” and they don’t keep up with current research. Therefore, incorrect methods of training and nutrition are often perpetuated by an army of unqualified personal trainers – and the general public is left confused! BUT, I can visibly see that a new breed of fitness professional is making a stand…

– I believe that the role of a fitness professional is one of the most important positions to be in. And one of the most rewarding.

Can you feel the love?

Can you feel the love?

I believe that it is my responsibility to be the most qualified, most knowledgeable, most up-to-date, most experienced, most enthusiastic fitness professional I can be… in order to be deserving of my title and my position as a top fitness pro, AND to be deserving of the trust of my clients and readers.

– I believe that, if you’re gonna teach something, you need to have been somewhat successful in that something. Fitness professionals need to prove that they can follow a healthy lifestyle. They need to be fit and healthy! They need to know how to cook. They need to walk the talk – be a walking billboard for their beliefs. Otherwise, how can you trust that they can get YOU results??

I believe that true health is only possible through a synergistic combination of physical stimulation, mental stimulation, nourishment, hydration, rest, recovery, and a healthy mindset.

– I believe that finding an activity you enjoy (and making time to enjoy that activity) feeds your soul. Give yourself the chance to be physical and you’ll be much more satisfied with life.

I believe that mindset is everything! You create your own experience in life. No, you don’t have full control over what happens to you, externally. But you have complete control over how you react/respond. You have control over changing your internal dialogue when it no longer serves you. Life can be hard – but with a little bit of shift in perspective, life can also be enjoyable, happy, fun, and worthwhile. 🙂

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I’m sure I could go on. But that’s a good start.

I’m passionate about my line of work. I hope you can see that.
I want to help as many people as I can. I hope you can see that, too.
And I’m prepared to lay it all on the line so that you can fully understand where I stand on all topics of health and fitness.

Like I said, I want to be transparent. So, there it is…