Rachel Bailey – The Great Pretender

Rachel Bailey Photo

Rachel Bailey – The Great Pretender

When the ray of sunshine by the name of Rachel Bailey took a seat in front of me on one particularly bright Saturday afternoon, she wore the same whimsical-yet-anxious look on her face that all the amazing souls interviewed before her had. A look that said “I don’t know why you’re interviewing me, I don’t really have anything amazing to share…”

That’s where everyone is wrong. Rachel is no exception.

In all the years that I’ve known Rachel, she’s always been a vibrant ray of sunshine. On the taller side just like her mom she has always been uncannily sweet and never selfish (again, just like her wonderful mother). She was the exact same way as the 22 year old woman nervously awaiting the questions I’m set to ask her.

“This isn’t my story, it’s yours!” I say.

“I have no agenda here. I just want the world to see how wonderful you are.” I assure her.

“What do you want people to know?” I ask.

“Well…” She began.

From a young age, Rachel always struggled with her self-worth for a reason lost unto her. Although extremely close with her mom (her rock), she constantly battled with feeling good enough for not just herself, but literally EVERYONE she came in contact with. A life-long weight struggler to match, Rachel could never quite get healthy living down. The further she strived for perfection, the farther away from happy Rachel became. Even still, she internalized her self-worth issues and never could bring herself to talk about it with anybody seeing as how she felt bad enough already… people couldn’t know she was THIS broken!

With her “happy shield” starting to reveal its cracks and her weight escalating rapidly, it caused concern amongst those closest to her. Enough concern to prompt prods and urges for Rachel to get healthier. Join a gym. Start a diet. You know the typical clichés.

Fed up with the pestering, Rachel gave in. She waved the white flag and reluctantly joined the gym. She started a diet. She went along with everything everyone else wanted while secretly resenting it all. She was working on all the right things for all the wrong reasons. It was a chore. A burden upon her shoulders that was just “one more thing” to add to the plates she was spinning just trying to convince everyone she was fine all along!

Technically, that would be called denial. I call it planting the very seeds that our wisdom grows from.

All the while she was singing the same sad song and dance she wanted no part in, she was in a broken relationship and having trouble with close friends further leading to her devastatingly hastening spiral down the happiness drain.

The crowning jewel of straws that break camel’s backs was the passing of her Grandmother on October 20th, 2010. Not only was her world shattered, but her mom’s as well. Her pillar had lost her pillar, and the illusion of everything being ok had finally drawn its curtain. Having left the damaging relationship with her boyfriend and seeing a therapist in regards to friendships lost, Rachel was broken. Succumbing to the depression, she treated herself horribly. Using food as therapy and her self-esteem as a dart board, Rachel still hadn’t hit rock bottom. All it took was a simple question she had heard on the day of her Grandmother’s passing and that had haunted her more and more vividly with each passing day.

“What have you done with your life to make Grandma proud?”

One day, without any warning whatsoever, Rachel woke up and something felt different… There was less tension in her shoulders and more color in her vision. What once was a haze had turned into clarity. Coming out of a fog, Rachel realized something monumental. Whether it was her subconscious speaking to her in her sleep or something she knew all along yet had finally decided to believe THIS day, a new Rachel awoke.

Gone were the feelings of needing to prove herself to others. In its place was the realization she needed to take care of herself for HER. She realized she was the only one putting the kind of pressure and strain on herself, so she could be the very person to take it off.

So she did.

Hell bent on providing an adequate answer to the question posed on the day of her Grandma’s passing, she had a new fire she had never experienced before. A feeling of purpose and importance beyond what other people thought evolving into the realization of the overall end game. Not toned abs and slender legs. A healthy life! Seeing the tragedy of her Grandmother’s flame extinguishing too soon put into focus that she was on an even quicker path to her own expiration date. Rachel was killing herself faster and faster each day, with no remorse for herself at all.

That day Rachel woke up with the weight of the world on her shoulders replaced with the levity of her self-worth made the things that used to be burdening chores turn into affirmation of everything she was capable of.

No longer dragging her feet through the mud, Rachel finds herself smiling for no reason and laughing at her own dorkiness. With each passing day Rachel’s confidence grows. No longer needing a guy, the acceptance of certain friends, or anything but the love for herself, life has never been sweeter. The kicker is that in turning a new leaf she found herself showered with love she never allowed herself to accept before. 

Rachel has found a new body beyond the amazing weight-loss she experienced at the hands of a happier her. She has found an able body that doesn’t know the word “quit” nor does it utter the words “I can’t…” anymore.

She became the person she was pretending to be by no longer pretending anymore.

I leave you with a very fitting quote. One I have always believed in yet I feel has never been more applicable than in the moment I finished this wonderful interview.

“You are only as beautiful on the outside as you feel on the inside. Until you learn to love yourself, you’ll always see ugly in the mirror”

–          The Rebellion

– Rebel8

Hanky-Plank Challenge!

The Hanky-Plank challenge!

First and foremost, “Hanky-Plank” means nothing. It rhymes and it’s catchy, so you’ll remember it… Now that you’ve uncovered my hidden agenda there it’s time to get down to brass tacks! (PS I am certain it’s not “tax” if that’s what you’re thinking right now. Trust me, I am well versed in my haberdashery skills).

The challenge is simple; Every OTHER day, hold a 5 minutes accumulated plank. It doesn’t have to be 5 minutes in a row, but does need to total 5 minutes. Once you are able to 5 minutes in a row, then it’s simple… Add another minute! If you get to the point where you can hold a 5 minute plank continuously, then go to 6. Once you can do 6, then go to 7… Trust me, the numbers won’t be climbing at a rate you won’t be able to keep up with :).

To start, watch this video as a guide on how to implement the perfect plank and keep it perfect:

The goal; To strengthen your core to the max! Out of all the exercises in existence, I believe the plank is the most structurally sound when done right. It reinforces your body from the inside out, incorporating your entire body in learning how to work together as a whole. Having a strong plank will not only better the quality and effectiveness of your workouts, but also your life! It is functionality training at it’s finest when done right, and that’s what I’m here for… To make sure it’s done right ;). By the end of this thing, I hope to have created some plank MONSTERS!

The prize; You will get a special “Plank Specialist” t-shirt provided and designed by myself, customized to YOU, as well as a highlighted spot on the shovel when it comes time to sign it! You have earned both simple-yet-prestigious prizes if you are able to take the top plank spot!

The rules:

1) The winner will be decided during the end of challenge fit test once both teams have done said test. DURING the challenge however, I strongly encourage doing the plank in the “knees down” position if it is too much for your lower back. Hurting yourself is not worth it when the goal is to better yourself.

2) Follow the instructions of the video carefully. Be AWARE of what every part of your body is doing and listen to your body if it says it’s time to take a break. There’s a difference between sharp lower back pain and a difficult exercise. As human beings, we have an instinct that tells us when something is harming us as opposed to when something is just hard. Listen to that instinct. Along the same line,

3) If your lower back starts to hurt, then rest until you are able to perform the exercise WITHOUT your lower back taking all the pain. That means your body isn’t strong enough to go any longer, but it doesn’t mean you’re not working it effectively. The important thing here is a healthy body, not “as long as possible at all costs.”

4) We are going on the honor system here, since in the end the fit test will show the practice!

I promise that if you follow these guidelines your plank time will not only go through the roof, but your body will feel like brand new! It we will be hard work, but that’s what makes it worth it. The benefits FAAAAAAAR outweigh the energy output used in tackling this challenge. You will have a reinforced structural integrity that you will be able to reap the benefits from well past your workouts and into your every day life.

Game on ;).

– Rebel8

What to do between challenges??

Once July is over, all classes marked “free” will turn into $10 a MONTH for unlimited “FREE!” classes!

As “Rebel X” comes to a close and “The Rebe11ion” lies in the midst (August 18th… Sign up details to come out soon…) There is about a months worth of time in between where I guarantee there will be a lot of motivation looking to get utilized. Well, this post will provide you with acceptable outlets!

Before I continue, I want to let you all know I will be gone the week of July 29th – August 5th to get a little battery recharging in before the dawn of a new wheel emerges :). After that, classes above are as follows:

– Every Wednesday @9am (except August 1st) – Boot camp beat down! A total body blast with a bit of cardio emphasis. Due to popular demand, must be kept to Anytime Fitness members (if you have a working key, you’re good!) only.

– Every Friday morning @9:30am (except August 3rd) – Mud Circuit Training! 12-20 total body exercises set up to test your balance, endurance, coordination, strength, and sheer mental grit as once the workout starts… It doesn’t stop. Designed to train you for the rigors of mud runs (Tough Mudder, Warrior Dash, etc.) while giving you a kick butt workout in the process! Due to popular demand, must be kept to Anytime Fitness members (if you have a working key, you’re good!) only.

Every Wednesday @7:45pm – The Rebel-yum! A food group graciously co-hosted by the wonderful Liz Rait! With Bobbi Rivera as the resident recipe provider, this group invites anyone struggling with the food side of this whole health and fitness thing to come on by and talk it out! Get some tips and share your own experiences, all while finding that you truly aren’t alone in this! Click HERE for more info!

And those are just the regular classes I’ll be running! Ask anybody who has done them… Heather’s TRX classes, Michelle’s early morning classes, Angelica’s later classes, and the Yoga are AWESOME! If you’ve waiting for the opportunity to try some of these classes but have been wrapped up in Rebel… Well now is your chance to rock them out! All of their classes will be regularly scheduled the week that I’m gone, so don’t be shy to contact Heather (our wonderful personal training manager!) about any class details you may need. Don’t worry everyone, she doesn’t bite!

Now for the specialty classes I will be running!

– August 8th/15th @ 6:30pm – BOSU class! Back by popular demand for 2 weeks only! This class focuses on total body balance and coordination. Centered around “quiet chaos” this class is different than most of my boot camps… The energy is focused rather than spastic, and the workout is essentially non stop… Testing every fiber your body has got in a way so challenging the time flies by and at the end, you can’t help but want more! SIGN UP ONLY! Due to popular demand, must be kept to Anytime Fitness members (if you have a working key, you’re good!) only. Also, I cannot accept “over the internet” sign-ups. Spots are limited to 12, and you must put your name on the sign up sheet located outside the aerobic room PHYSICALLY at the gym. Cost is $10!

August 9th @ 6pm – Rebel Style Workout: Legs! That’s all the description you need 😉 SIGN UP ONLY! Due to popular demand, must be kept to Anytime Fitness members (if you have a working key, you’re good!) only. Also, I cannot accept “over the internet” sign-ups. Spots are limited, and you must put your name on the sign up sheet located outside the aerobic room PHYSICALLY at the gym. Cost is $10!

–  August 16th @ 6pm – Rebel Style Workout: Core! That’s all the description you need 😉SIGN UP ONLY! Due to popular demand, must be kept to Anytime Fitness members (if you have a working key, you’re good!) only. Also, I cannot accept “over the internet” sign-ups. Spots are limited, and you must put your name on the sign up sheet located outside the aerobic room PHYSICALLY at the gym. Cost is $10!

Also, I will be opening myself up to some more one on one sessions if you’d like to set up some tutorials where I can bring you through a workout and give you a handout of what we did when we were done so that you have the necessary tools to know what to do when your NOT doing a class! Please e-mail me  at AllLevelsTraining@gmail.com. if you’d like to set something up! I humbly ask it be kept to e-mail only and not any other form of communication so that I can best consolidate the various methods of interaction the world now provides :). It makes it easier to schedule via e-mail and e-mail only rather than sifting through your facebook messages, texts, voicemails, tweets, wall posts, and website comments :). Y’all rock!

Lastly… We here at Anytime Fitness at Santa Rosa Ave. have a new, positively AMAZING tool to help lead us all on this Fitness Rebellion… a certified nutritionist! Her name is Michelle LaBlue and she is one of our newest trainers yet started out one of our original members!

Nutrition!

That’s our girl Michelle in the middle!

She is certified through NASM (National Academy of Sports Medicine) and has her Nutritionist certification through Sac State. She is capable on every level to help you figure out the best game plan for healthy eating for YOU, not EVERYONE. What’s good for the goose is NOT always good for the gander… She’ll treat you all like the unqiue geese you truly are! The sugar on top is that contrary to the picture above, she has quite the story of knowing the ups and downs of food and fitness so you know that you are meeting with a safe, reliable expert who is going to be able to relate what you’re going through rather than talk to you like “it’s as simple as eat this and DON’T eat this…” A lot of you know my own personal struggle with food and how it pertains to fitness, so I want to remind y’all she MORE than gets my approval!

Michelle LaBlue’s contact information:
E-mail – Fitlabconsults@yahoo.com

If you’re still not convinced, here is a brief bio in Michelle’s own words:

“As a teen and into my twenties, I struggled to find balance between having a social life, exercising, and eating nutritious foods. As a result, I also struggled with my weight. I’d go through periods of trying to out-exercise my bad diet (without results, of course) followed by short-lived starvation diets, which worked temporarily, but were not sustainable and definitely did not support the strong, healthy I was trying to achieve. After becoming certified as a personal trainer, I realized how important it is to fuel your body, not only for exercise, but also to support a healthy lifestyle. I began studying nutrition at Sac State and graduated in May 2012 with my Bachelor’s in Food & Nutrition. 
I am certainly not perfect when it comes to eating “clean and healthy” 100% of the time. I LOVE chocolate and pizza, and enjoy both-on occasion. I don’t believe in deprivation-it is NOT a long-term solution. What I do believe in is finding a healthy balance in nutrition and exercise that fits easily into your lifestyle & helps you reach your health and fitness goals in the long run! 
Whether you’ve reached a plateau, are looking to lose weight or gain muscle, nutrition matters and I’m here to help!”

I hope you all enjoy the rest of your weekend! Full details on “The Rebe11ion” tomorrow, July 16th ;).

AhhhOOOOOO!!!!!

– Rebel8

Rebel X Wrap Party: Hillbilly Ho-Down!

Hillbilly Ho-down!

Don your best denim duds and join all three teams at Keiser Park in Windsor for a down home good time. Bring your significant other, kids, family or maybe some friends who are interested in checking out what Rebel is all about! The more the merrier as we celebrate an amazing 3 months together in true Rebel fashion!
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We will have some great BBQ, salads, desserts and drinks for everyone along with some other surprises!
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The party starts at 1 and will go until the parks guy comes and shuts the gate on us at sunset so come ready to party.
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This is about mingling and celebrating an amazing 10 weeks together. You’ve done a lot, now it’s time to bask in the glory of it! I will be handing out before and after certificates and  individual awards (Including MVH – Most Valuable Hulk) as well as presenting a slideshow depicting the last 3 months and a few other extra videos. This is also where you get to put your stamp on the shovel and sign it. There will also be a showcase of the past 9 challenges that got us to this point in the first place :).
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$20 per person will get you everything listed above. It would also be awesome if whoever is able could pitch in a few extra bucks for the beer/wine or bring something to share! (If you have kids under 8 you don’t need to pay for them)
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I have faith that all of you will dig deep for your inner hillbilly and really go all out with your costume.  Right?
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You can give either myself or Bobbi Rivera the $20 per person any time between now and July 14th. It’s very important that Bobbi gets everyone’s money by then so she can make sure this is the most amazing wrap party yet!
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The best celebrations are the ones that are worth it!

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I just want to take this moment to thank Bobbi Rivera for everything she is doing for this party. The theme, organization, and food stuff is all her. She booked the park, has been collecting money to get this shindig off the ground for the last month or so, and has never faltered in how hard she’s working to make sure this is the best wrap party we’ve ever had :). Bobbi, I can never thank you enough for all that you do 🙂
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I can’t wait to celebrate with you all 😉
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– Rebel8

Train the trainer… What it means to me

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 At the end of every challenge I run, something called “Train the Trainer” takes place. It’s where everyone who I’ve been mercilessly grinding into the floor week in and week out has the chance to show up and work ME out. I mean, haven’t you ever wanted to make the guy or gal who beats you up in boot camp or one on one sessions do the same stuff they make you do? It’s a dream come true from the perspective of the person who gets trained all the time and a nightmare for me, the trainer. I say it’s a nightmare because I’ll be damned if everyone I work with doesn’t get better and better and whooping my butt every single time. I tell people to think of the thing I made you do that you hated the MOST… and make me do it! I tell people to research something crazy and put me to the ultimate test! Whatever floats everyone’s boat, as long as they don’t take it easy on me (trust me, they don’t).

Well, this video was captured by my lovely Unicorn of a girlfriend who I didn’t know was taking a video until after. I wanted to share this video so everyone knows what “Train the Trainer” means to me. I’m putting this video out of me at one of my more openly vulnerable points so that someone, somewhere will understand that it does get better…

You just can’t take “I’m not good enough” as an answer anymore.

– Rebel8

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“I’m Worth It”

If you know David now, you know he doesn’t quite look like this fella here anymore…

This is the David I know now!

Like Lori De Marco, I interviewed our resident goofball David Moody a few weeks back and learned quite a bit about an individual who I already admired and revered where he came from, but was able to build on that. I was able to learn more about an already fascinating individual, and I felt (just like with Lori) it was too good to keep under wraps. So, I asked him if I could share the write up I made of this beast of a man and he gave me the green light! So, without further adieu… 

David Moody – I’m Worth It

Have you ever felt uncomfortable in your surroundings? Have you ever found yourself struggling to fit in only to succumb to the fact that this is how things always will be and you might as well get used to it? Have you ever experienced a struggle with food? Whether it’s not being able to put it down, not being able to pick it up without feeling guilty, or not being able to recognize the difference between friend and sustenance… odds are a great majority of you already relate in there somewhere…

Meet David Moody.

David Moody, like a lot of people, found out through logging a lot of data hours that kids are cruel. From a very young age, he had a tough time fitting in and didn’t really know why. He did everything he could, even trying out for his high school’s football team (he eventually got cut), yet nothing worked. David still felt the sting of all the haunting taunts and hateful names he got called on a daily basis no matter what line of defense he took. Until the 7th grade, when he gave food a shot…

After a particularly tough day, David found himself wandering to the cabinet almost instinctively;searching for something to soothe the anguish he couldn’t get rid of. This is where the fireworks went off. The brain band-aid was laid out and it clicked… Food was the ticket! Food wasn’t going to make fun of him. It wasn’t going to give him a hard time. It would always be there whenever he needed it. It would never let him down nor could HE let food down! Food somehow always managed to mask the anguish, anxiety, and pain of the day to day so David started to prescribe himself heavy doses of waaaaaaaaaaay to many calorie injections. Had a rough day? The cupboard always had something to take care of that… Feeling lonely? Bacon to the rescue! This coping mechanism worked great until he got caught… His parents reminded him that all the food he was inhaling was for family dinners. Money was really tight already, so to overdue eating like that at the sake of his family was enough to get him to stop.

At least, that’s what one would hope.

David became extremely good at hiding his eating habits. An expert at hiding the wrappers and getting rid of any incriminating evidence. He was pulling CSI maneuvers before there was a CSI. The reason I’m telling you all of this is because it further deepened his relationship with food. Made it almost like a secret lover… “Of COURSE the world is going to judge me no matter WHAT I do… but food will always be there! Don’t worry baby, it’ll be our little secret…” The secret was out though and David had no idea. He was in complete denial about the adverse affect all the food was having on his body and mind. He didn’t see all the weight he was gaining. The lethargy taking place. The lack of energy in NO WAY had anything to do with the fact that he had consumed candy like he was a dumpster at the Hershey factory. The skin issues he started to generate? The high blood pressure? Borderline onset diabetes? High cholesterol? kidney stones? Nothing baggy clothes, hanging out with people in similarly destitute situations, and becoming the definition of a homebody so you’d never have to put yourself out there couldn’t fix!

Then one day about 12 years ago, David was at work. At his desk, he had himself 3 monitors all set up in front of him; One in front of him and 2 to each side. He was about to leave work, and was shutting down all the monitors for the evening. David had just gotten done binge eating through his candy drawer, polishing off some chips, and ordering a pizza when he glanced over and caught his reflection in the computer monitor. “Oh my god… I’m fat…” hit him like a ton of bricks as he scanned and poured over this reflection that COULDN’T be his… Could it? The YEARS of denial and passing blame on to others had caught up with him in a big way. Suddenly, his brain quit denying the fact that he was a mess. Harder to cope with was the realization that he had put himself INTO that mess in the first place! Could you imagine that double whammy? 

This is the part of the story where I wish I could tell you that he turned his life around, made positive changes, and he’s spent the last 12 years inspiring others to do the same. I want to tell that to you so bad. However, that is not the case. For the next 11 years, he had lost the comfort of ignorance and now lived with the awful reality that he was broken and didn’t know how to fix his internal issues. On the outside everything appeared to be great, he had a successful job at Industrial Light and Magic, his job allowed for travel and a TON of life experiences! Everything could be looked at as fine on the outside!

The issues that started since early childhood had only intensified however. The bigger the beast, the harder it was to control. The more stress and anxiety it created. He joined several different gyms and went at MOST twice to each one. He always managed to find excuses not to go and eventually even hated the fact he was making excuses in the first place! To let yourself down over and over again, KNOW you’re letting yourself down over and over again, and still not fix the problem is not only extremely hard to deal with, but is also indicative of needing to change your perspective. What’s the definition of insanity? Doing the same thing over and over again yet expecting different results. David hadn’t come to realize it was a complete lifestyle change. He hadn’t realized that it would take a fresh mind and a lot of hard work starting with his heart and brain first and foremost to undo the lifetime of habits he had grown accustomed to. Rome wasn’t built in a day, thus it is impossible to strip it all down in one day as well. That fact often gets lost when goal setting.

David had tried every crash diet imaginable. Atkins, South Beach, Hollywood… Nothin’. He gave a failed attempt at Weight Watchers but found that futile. Binge eating and purging were to no avail. Diet pills, acupuncture, psychiatrist… Nothing stuck. After years and years of this yo-yo routine, he found himself living literally right next door to a nautilus gym. He managed to continue going for a straight month! A WHOLE MONTH! David, however, still hadn’t realized he needed to fix how he viewed the journey. He found himself working out with the “I can’t wait to eat because I worked so hard and that makes it ok to eat whatever I want!” mentality. He viewed the light at the end of the tunnel being the only thing that’s important. He hadn’t realized that it’s the tunnel itself that is A) never ending, B) enjoyable, and C) where all the magic happens. So, after that successful month, he went right back to old habits.

Then, one day about a year ago, David came across some healthy lifestyle success stories while surfing the internet. After scouring over a few, he found himself ready to give taking care of himself properly another shot! He thought to himself “this can’t be it for me… not yet…” Full of new hope, he remembered there was a gym just a hop, skip, and a jump away from his house! He always drove by it, but never found a reason for it to stand out. Well, the success stories he read were about people taking charge of their own lives. He didn’t know it yet, but THAT was the difference. THAT moment, when his spark of inspiration came from people taking charge of their own health and destiny, was what his perspective needed. Like a defibrillator to his heart and soul, he found a reason for that little gym down the street from his house to stand out. The reason was him. 

Don’t get me wrong, that realization was very flighty in the beginning… but it was there. It had already planted its roots and by this point, there was nothing David could do to shake it. He got himself a trainer at the gym. He had worked with trainers before, but this guy was a bit different. He had similar life issues to his own, and was not only VERY open about them (because David wasn’t quite ready to reveal himself that much yet) but had conquered quite a bit of them as well! Slowly but surely, that confidence started to build… The “it” factor David couldn’t find… He found it. After about 20 pounds lost via healthy decisions his new trainer had helped him out with, he found himself getting ready to do the impossible. David had come to the point where he was ready to shatter every comfort zone he had ever known and put himself to the ultimate test.

He joined a boot camp program. With a spastic trainer who seemed extremely intimidating. With a LOT of people. Where they scream, chant, yell, have team songs, and nicknames. Yeah, his comfort zone was null and void. Come to find out though, that intimidating trainer happened to be a great friend and mentor of the trainer he’d been working with! More surprised yet, this athletic trainer had a weight loss/ life changing journey himself! New fears arose however… What if I look stupid yelling? What if I can’t keep up? What if everyone hates me because I hold them back? What if I quit and stop showing up the way I ALWAYS do? What if I let my trainer down? What if I let my wife down? What if people make fun of me because I look like a fool trying to learn all these things they already know? What if I’m the fat guy? What if I’m the shy guy? What if…

You get the picture.

Like I said though, David was ready… He took all these questions and applied his new found realization; The only way he was ever going to take charge of his own life like the success stories that inspired him in the first place was to battle a lot of the hard questions that he had shrugged off for years. “You get the results people don’t get by doing the work people don’t do” is a motto yelled out constantly by the trainer in the new boot camp he had just joined. He realized this didn’t apply purely to physical fitness… In fact, David realized this was only a FRACTION about physical fitness! Most people don’t find themselves worthy enough to fight for. All of a sudden, his eyes opened and he saw truth… He is MORE than worthy to fight for. In this new found group, David found he was FAR from the only one who had issues like his! All of his new found friends were looking for a group of people who thought just like they did. Who felt that health and happiness far outweighed stress and loathing. Who wanted to fight for THEMSELVES rather than submit to settling for misery. The wonderful part was that when he was having a bad day, this group of people who called themselves “Rebels” would lift him up in an instant. He also found the joy of being able to share HIS good days with those who weren’t have the brightest of ones. It was a checks and balance system for ALL aspects of fitness, and David hasn’t looked back since…

It was through these new experiences that David realized all along he was chasing the result and trying to cut corners to get there, not realizing there was a lot to work through that had nothing to do with how strict your eating is or how hard you worked out. He saw that until he was able to see the GOOD from taking care of himself, it’ll always be a chore and always be negative. Plant a positive seed, get a positive flower. Plant a negative seed…

I can now say that David has lost over 30 pounds in the last ten months. He’s able to hold a plank for the length of an entire long song where before he wasn’t able to hold his breathe without fear of a heart attack. He is developing a healthy relationship with food and that completely coincides with his new found love of not only taking care of his body, but working out with others. He no longer shy’s away from being in public for fear of being judged. No longer does he reject his self worth. Sure, he has his good days and his bad, but David knows how to deal with the bad days now. For the things he DOESN’T know how to deal with, David has found a new support group with his Rebels. He’s able to talk about his issues now rather than bottling it up inside and trying to keep up a front of invincibility. 

The sunshine is brighter now. The laughs are heartier. The sleep is sounder. Life… is better. All it took was a lifetime to work out one simple fact to turn it all around…

“I’m worth it.”


Settin’ the Moody!!!

– Rebel8

I wish that I was strong enough to lift not one, but both of us

The song you hopefully are listening to above is a song that is currently crawling it’s way to the radio. It’s a song that comes off “Strange Clouds” by B.O.B. that I’m absolutely in love with. This is one of those songs that I really like, but not as much as many others (“Just a sign,” “Chandelier,” and “Bombs Away” to name a few). That is, until I realized what the song was REALLY about…

From the moment I heard the song I always just kind of pictured the song being about a family member, a friend, or significant other of some sort. Well, I was doing my morning meditation on the elliptical when this song came on shuffle. For some reason, the instant the guitar started in the beginning, I realized “this song isn’t about a family member, friend, or significant other at all… It’s about the person in the mirror!” It was at THAT moment I visualized being bent over my bathroom sink in exhaustion, looking up with tired pupils as I lock eyes with my reflection and ask the question we all end up getting to at one point or another… “What the hell am I doing and can I keep this up?” I had this visual because it’s a reality that has happened on several occasions (don’t worry, the answer I always come to is yes, I can keep this up).

The song reminded me of all the times I felt like I wasn’t strong enough to take care of myself. Even if those moments are fleeting, they still can wear down your armor. I tell people all the time that my boot camps (and I hope people realize this is a metaphor for life at this point) aren’t designed to be done perfectly, but designed to challenge you to be better when everything in you says “I Can’t.” When you’re surrounded by 25 of the greatest people you’ve ever met all locked in to a boot camp where everyone has the same goal and not an ounce of negative is brought to the equation it’s easy to be motivated… but what about those times when you’re by yourself?

When you’re looking in the mirror, wondering if you have the strength to go on? I’ve found myself looking in the mirror MORE than a time or two saying “I wish that I was strong enough to carry both of us.” That reflection is symbolic. That reflection, more importantly, is reality. Your opportunity to see yourself from the outside while still looking within.

I’ve got great news… You are strong enough.

There is something I do when I’m working out either on my own or in a group setting. I will find a mirror and lock eyes with myself when things get really difficult. I’ve had people notice and ask about it, and people aren’t quite sure if I’m joking or serious when I say “I’m daring myself to quit on myself.” That’s EXACTLY what I’m doing. I’m not joking. I’m holding myself accountable. When you let yourself down, it’s often accompanied by turning your head down and ignoring the painfully obvious… You quit on yourself. It’s a whole new ball game when you hold YOURSELF accountable. You get the results people don’t get by doing the work people don’t do is MUCH more than just physical. By now, many of you know that. What I hope you get from this post is that your reflection is powerful. You ARE the results! You ARE the work! Holding YOURSELF accountable is exactly what people don’t do. YOU’RE YOUR LAST LINE OF DEFENSE!!!

So, in conclusion, I just wanted to share a song that really struck a nerve with me when I realized what it was about. It’s about the person in the mirror. That reflection that stares back at you, begging for help but not knowing how to get it. I recommend you all listen to the song from start to finish and listen with the mentality I just talked about. For some of you, it will floor you. For others, you’ll be done saying “Neat song!” or “I hate Taylor Swift!” However, if ONE person gets even the slightest impact that I got from the song, then this post was a success…

 

AhhhhhOOOOOO!!!!

 

– Rebel8

 

Let It Burn!

The video below makes a TON more sense if you read the explanation below THEN view. Not only that, but I guarantee you don’t have to have participated in the exercise to have it resonate with you. More people than just the 75 or so that went through this exercise need to have this kind of liberation.

Welcome to the Rebellion.

 

On May 29th, May 30th, and May 31st, I had a special exercise I did with every team that’s a part of Rebel X. Team Ignition (VROOM VROOM!), Team Beast, and Team Ballistic all took part in this activity where upon arrival everyone was asked to write down 2 things; The thing they hate about themselves the most on the pink card and a compliment that would make your absolute day if someone were to approach you and give it to you.

I then had everyone place their card on the wall. All the cards were anonymous, and I shoveled the cards so no one knew whose was whose. Everyone then proceeded to squat down and HOLD the squat position in front of whatever card they had in front of them. After holding the squat sit for 10 seconds, absorbing the card and everything it says, I had everyone step directly over to the next card and hold the squat sit again for 10 seconds. Again, all the while the focus being not only on the burning in your legs but the card in your face.

We did this until all the cards had been read and absorbed by every single person.

At the end, I made the very clear point that each card represented one of the MANY negative thoughts swirling around in every single persons had that was in that aerobic room. When I asked how many people related to more than 2 cards, every hand went up. When I  asked how many people related to more than 5 of the cards, every hand went up. When I asked how many people related to more than HALF the cards, every single hand went up…

At this point I’d like to remind you that every age, gender, occupation, athletic ability, mind set, and every other variable you can think of was represented in this room. This was NOT a room full of strictly athletes, nor was it a room full of strictly first time “weight losers.” I repeat… EVERY SINGLE HUMAN DEMOGRAPHIC WAS REPRESENTED IN THIS EXERCISE

Once everyone’s hand had gone up after asking how many people felt connected to more than HALF the cards, I asked the all important question…

“How many of you feel the way you read on those cards towards ANYONE ELSE HERE other than yourself?”

Eyes averted downward. Crickets all of a sudden became an explosion of noise. Most evident however was the lack of a single hand being raised.

The point was this… All those horrendously negative things swirling around your head are created BY you FOR you. You think anyone else is pointing the finger at you CONVINCED your belly fat is awful, you’re weak and lazy, you have terrible skin, you’re self conscious, you have a problem with eating too much, you constantly assure yourself you’re a failure, and you’ll never amount to anything? NO! THEY ARE TOO BUSY THINKING THESE THINGS ABOUT THEMSELVES!!!

So, I decided to burn all the negativity away. Get rid of it. Gone. Finite. Chapter closed. I hope you understand the video above, to many people, is more than just words on paper being burned on a pot. It is a mindset that is put out in the open so it can FULLY be let go of. Kind of like how on any supernatural “ghost” show or movie 9 times out of 10 the reason the “ghost is still in the living realm” is because it hasn’t lived out it’s purpose. Well, your negative degradation has served its purpose, and now it’s time to get laid off. It’s expired. The purpose to show you pain so you can know happiness.

How long are you going to drag out the pain? When no one feels that way about you but YOU, when are YOU going to forgive yourself and move on? No better time like the present…

As for what I did with the compliment cards… I turned the lights out, had everybody hold a wall sit, and read off every single compliment. This was the light and fun portion (before we went out into the back alley and did lunges until our legs didn’t feel feelings anymore) but also the most important. This was the portion where all the things people DO notice about you but perhaps don’t say as often came out to the open. This was the point of the day where all the nice things you need to hear more than you realize get told to you. Not because it’s nice… but because it’s true. 

Seriously, you don’t look that old at ALL. I see how hard you work, it’s definitely paying off! You look like you’ve lost some weight! I love your arms! Nice ass! You’re a WONDERFUL mother! You’re gonna be an AMAZING Auntie! You seem so happy! I’ve never met anybody as strong as you! You’re so inspiring! You truly look spectacular, you have a glow about you! I love being around you! You make me laugh! You make me happy!

Plant a positive seed, you get a positive flower.

AhhhhhOOOOOOOO!!!!

– Rebel8

Join the Rebel-yum!

Welcome to the Rebel-yum!

Hey Rebels!

I just wanted to put out there a reminder that every Wednesday night at 7:40pm at Anytime Fitness off Santa Rosa Avenue there is a food group open to all members of Anytime Fitness and Rebel X! If you’re not a member but would still like to check it out, no problem! Just send me a quick e-mail (Alllevelstraining@gmail.com) and let me know! I’ll make sure you are properly set up to have a good experience (mandatory I get an e-mail though… We need to know and be ready for any non members showing up).

For those of you who don’t know,  We are the Rebel-yum. A group of people who get together weekly and discuss how our weeks nutrition intake was. We go over ups, downs, victories, disappointments, frustrations, questions, realizations… Everything that makes eating right and taking care of yourself so damn hard… because let’s be honest, we all LOVE having great energy, feeling good about ourselves, feeling comfortable in clothing of our choice, and feeling amazing when you’re being active… So again, we go over all the reasons why we know all of the latter yet it’s like pulling teeth from a shark sometimes.

Puttin’ down the cheese wheel and going for the greenery… I like it!

In food group, you’ll find new perspectives you might not have thought of before. You’ll find you’re not the only one having a tough time. You’ll be a part of a support group set and ready to keep track of you on the “My Fitness Pal” app that is all the rage (that app is awesome! It let’s people keep up with you and share information all while having an insane database of food to make keeping track of what you eat SUPER easy!). You’ll also have the ability to share what YOU know that could possibly help someone else! We’ve all accumulated a lot of experience on this journey we call life… Let’s put it all together and make figuring it out easier!

Every week, we will have a topic of discussion as well as a healthy food recipe provided by everyone’s favorite Bobbi Rivera. This week, the amazing and fantastically super Liz Rait (who co-leads the group with me… Thank you Liz!) will be offering up a special “exercise” (non physical) that all I can tell you is going to be a ton of fun while helping integrate some light bulbs hopefully turning on as well :).

Lastly, you don’t HAVE to speak. You are more than welcome to come join the Rebel-yum as a spectator until you feel comfortable enough to share! If you’d like to keep up with everyone via Facebook (CICK HERE), we also have our own group where The Rebel-yum posts daily. VERY helpful!

If you have any questions, feel free to e-mail me at AllLevelsTraining@gmail.com. Look forward to seeing you there!

– Rebel8

When running the same monotonous rat race doesn’t work for you anymore.

Call Me Definitely…

What I want you to do is become one of the millions of people watching this video. Learn the lyrics. Feel the song. Let it make your blood turn into sensual soup as you gyrate to the synth’d rhythm  and raw emotion surge like an overload circuit. Let sweat from your brow drip onto the floor by the pint as you can’t stop working your arms and legs in a running man motion revamped for this generation.

Because we’re gonna do a viral video!

So, here’s the deal. Many of you have seen the video of the Harvard baseball team rocking out and doing a choreographed mock video of this song. It’s gotten almost 9 million views, which is pretty damn impressive. I’m not taking anything away from these guys, but I’m also not trying to be one of MANY people to try to attempt to outdo them along the same lines.

Instead of a van, I want to use a gym :).

This right here is an open casting call for everyone that would like to rock this video out with me. Similar to an “OK GO” music video, I want to one shot this video. People will have “roles” ranging from big to small, but it will definitely be an awesome circus production. I want people who are ready to wear rebel shirts and sport the rebellion with pride! I want people who are ready and willing to get really goofy for the sake of something really fun and awesome. I already have my camera guy (Tye) and now all I need are MORE people. About 50 to be exact…

I want to meet at the gym at 1pm this Sunday, May 27th. If you have a Rebel shirt, it is a must that you wear it please :). I know this is memorial day weekend, which is why I want to shoot it at 1pm when the gym should be very very empty. It will be about 90-120 minutes total considering giving everyone direction, teaching everyone the simple dance I want you all to do, the timing, and any repeat takes we need to do.

Simple break down:

  • What: “One take” music video set to “Call Me Maybe” by Carly Rae Jepsen with the intent of going viral.
  • Date: May 27th (Sunday)
  • Time: 1pm
  • Location: Anytime Fitness off Santa Rosa Ave. (next to Target).

Contact me (Josh Cox) if you want in! Just send me an e-mail at Alllevelstraining@gmail.com and let me know if you’re coming! Friends and family are definitely invited :). Can’t wait to see you all!

– Rebel8

PS here’s the Harvard video if you want to see where the motivation came from;