You become what you believe…

Ever notice how things go in threes? What can I say, I’ve always been a bit superstitious. I blame it on my Grandma and Mom. Don’t whistle in the house… it calls the devil! Don’t touch the (I forget what they were – some sort of sculpture) – or you will get pregnant! haha!

Ok – time to get serious, because this is serious – and it pulled on my heart-strings very hard – three times this week.

By now, if you havbelief2e been following me or have trained with me or know me – you know my mantra and the one main lesson I try to teach women who work with me. Self-love. What a task… its something that takes days, weeks, months, years, decades of practice.

This week, my youngest daughter had a rough week with dance. She is at a new studio this year, new group of girls, new instructor, new surroundings and expectations. So far, things have been wonderful, but competition season is approaching and things are getting hard. For my daughter, if things get hard and she can’t “get it” right away, she shuts down. She calls herself down, says she can’t do it, its too hard, cries and gets frustrated. We had a lot of talks this week as well as a meeting with her dance instructor, to whom I was very grateful for as she re-iterated these very same things that I am about to say.

We all have strengths, we all have weaknesses. Something that comes easy to person A might seem almost impossible to person B and vice versa. However, rather than continually tell yourself that you are not good at whatever task it is at hand, you MUST re-structure your thoughts. If you are constabelief1ntly and repeatedly telling yourself that you are bad at something or can’t do something – it has been proven time and time again – that you will train your brain to actually believe that you cannot accomplish the task.

So, as my daughter’s dance teacher said, rather than say, “I suck at choreography”, tell yourself, “Choreography is difficult for me, however, not impossible. These are the things I can do to work on it to help it become easier.”

A couple days later, one of my clients posted in our private Facebook group, “I quit, just like I knew I would.” My heart sank. This client is so special to me. She is one of the most loving, funny, hard-working people I know. However, again, she truly does not believe in herself. She fails to see all of her strengths and she gives every last little piece of herself away to everyone and everything around her so that not much is left for her. When I first started with her, she told me, “I quit everything, I’m NOT quitting this.” But, I think deep down, she kept telling herself that she was a quitter and low and behold – she quit!

The third thing that happened just yesterday as I was running errands all over town with my eldest daughter, who happens to be the complete opposite of my little one. She has an abundance of confidence and is a figure skater. She was asking if she could skate in Calgary again this summer because she wanted to skate with her friends there. We ended up talking about her jumps and her frustration about not getting some of her double-jumps. I asked, “Why do you think you are having difficulty?” She said, “Because I suck at toe jumps.” I almost came unglued… but rather, I calmly stated, “Hunnbelief3y, just the mere process of you stating that you suck at toe jumps is training your brain to believe that you can’t do them! If you keep thinking and telling yourself that you “suck” at something – your brain changes its chemical pathways to condition your body to believe it!” She looked at me – and I really could see in her eyes, that she had an “ah-ha” moment. So we came up with some thought restructuring. “Toe jumps are difficult for me, but I can do them and these are the things I need to work on in order to get them done!”

I won’t deny that I can be the queen of negative self-talk. But for some reason, whether I was born with it or given the nurturing from my parents, teachers and mentors, I have a lot of confidence. I’m fairly stubborn too! lol! Tell me I can’t and I will try a hundred times harder to prove you wrong! I know that changing our thoughts and beliefs in ourselves works but its HARD work. I believe we just everything too fast, we are too impatient. Re-training our thoughts takes long, hard, work. But I can guarantee that it will be worth it. You just have to be willing to put in the work.

This pertains to so many things. Our society is so used to looking for a quick-fix. But those quick fixes are never sustainable and almost never realistic. Commit to the work. Do it for you. When a negative thought pops into your head… tell yourself (and no I’m not kidding), “thank-you for sharing, however…”. Re-frame the thought.

You are what you believe. You can accomplish anything you want. You can also fail at anything you tell yourself. One takes a lot more work that the other. Work for it, or give up. The one common denominator is that its all in YOUR control.


Hau’oli Makahiki Hou! (that’s Happy new Year in Hawaiian)…

“Hau’oli Makahiki Hou!”.   

Our family decided to “skip” the Christmas festivhawaii4ities and spend almost the entire duration of the school break in Hawaii. Oh do I feel blessed! My heart belongs in Hawaii – its my most favourite place on Earth and one day, I plan on living there! Heck, I was contemplating just becoming a trainer there – teaching pool aerobics like the very tanned 65-year-old lady we splashed around with where we stayed!

I thought it might be fitting to tie in a New Year’s rambling with my Hawaiian experience as I had challenges from start to finish.

I’m not one for New Year’s resolutions as they don’t seem to stand for very long. However, I’m always about setting new personal goals and bests and using the start of the year for a re-fresh and re-assessment of what you want to work on personally. Hawaii was definitely a good place to realize that I am light-years away from reaching a lot of my goals still. The biggest one being body-confidence.

With the Canadian dollar being so low, we opted for more beach and pool time this time around… our one big adventure was Zip Lining – sooo much fun! hawaii2We did a lot of walking, hiking, swimming, etc. There was a fairly decent gym at our complex – so I hit that all but two days. I was pleasantly surprised to see that I had only gained three pounds while I was away! We also ate all but 4 out of 16 dinners “at home”. I brought my good old Quest Bars with me, stuck to wine for my drink of choice (I did have 4 margaritas over the duration – I know I know – its Hawaii, not Mexico – but I love me some tequila!). We packed our own lunches to the beach etc. So, all in all, we did a good job of staying on track with that.

The problems for me came in with my body insecurities. I found this strange however. The beaches that we frequented were packed with people. ALLLLLLL kinds of people. I had commented on my personal Facebook page to friends and family that I had a whole new vision of thongs at the beach! There were women (and men) all around me who appeared to not give a f**k! In one thought I was thinking, “Wow, good for them for being so comfortable an confident!”… but then I was thinking, “How the f**k can then be so confident looking like that in a [insert various revealing or pretty much next to nothing beach attire]”?? I like to think that I am not a judgmental person – but I would seriously be lying if I said I didn’t judge… In my opinion no one’s arse belongs in a thong at a “family” beach… although, I think my husband and father-in-law were certainly enjoying some of the scenery.

So there I was, in my one-piece, feeling so uncomfortable every time I got up to go into the water – thinking that the ENTIRE population was watching my butt jiggle its way into the ocean, feelinhawaii5g as if I wanted to shrink and hide inside one of the tiny sea-shells that my daughter had found. But why??? Were other women (and men) feeling that way (except my mother-in-law who admitted she did). I’m sure that 80% of the women definitely felt that way, but it seemed that there was a portion who definitely looked relaxed at secure and truly did not give a F**k.

The six months leading up to our trip I kept thinking – “OK! Time to get these 10 pounds off for Hawaii!”, four months, “OK! Still have LOTS of time to tighten up the diet”, 2 months, “hmmmm… I should start to look at buying some swimsuits – but gotta lose those 10 pounds to expose my abs – so I shall wait!”, one month, “OK – seriously Olivia! 4 weeks – YOU CAN DO IT!!! – oh but nah…”. Sound familiar? So, I ordered one one-piece.

Interesting thing, one of my besties was over on Oahu at a different resort on the west side of the Island. We Skyped one night and I said, “uh… so most people are chunky here – there are not many fit bodies on the beach… why do I feel so insecure?”. Then she said, “Oh, just the opposite here – I’ve never seen so many tight bodies on vacation in my life!!” She then said that she looked up the housing prices there and the demographics and it was a very “ritzy” area. Sheesh – so I’m on the fat beach and she’s at the rich, fit people beach… well, I’d rather be at my beach…

hawaii1SEE???? OH EM GEEEEE!!!! What is that???? Why am I having these thoughts? My ENTIRE mantra is to be empowering women!!!! To feel strong, and confident, and beautiful no matter what their size or shape in the state that it is in NOW – not in 10 pounds less than from now – not to let it take over all the thoughts about your holiday – even obsess because I had no scale to check-in with… and CERTAINLY NOT to let my two daughters see my insecurity and have them feel insecure about themselves. My youngest daughter was commenting about her tummy rolls… there I was lecturing her about being confident and feeling beautiful no matter what. HOLY HECK!!! What ahawaii3 hypocrite of a mother!!!

So, here I am at the beginning of 2016! I’m getting ready to take on a whole new adventure training clients in my VERY OWN studio and to start back with my crazy-amazing bootcamp ladies! This year is the year that I will focus on goals such as:

  • increasing my PRs on my squat, deadlift and bench press
  • getting back to running (a little bit – heh – not over board)
  • increasing my endurance training
  • reading 8 personal growth books
  • reading for pleasure every night before bed
  • growing my personal training business
  • EMPOWERING MYSELF FOR REAL and shadowing that to all of my amazing women who I look at each and every day and see such amazing, beautiful people!!!

All I can say, is this is me, once again coming clean. I’m a personal trainer, coach, nutrition coach, bootcamp instructor, friend, wife and mom. I’m real and human. I’m not perfect – but I know my weaknesses and I will continue to bust my butt this year to get stronger physically, mentally and emotionally!

Most of all – I hope to take (and continue) with many of you on the very same journeys!!!


~xo Olivia