What lit a fire under my ass. Literally.

Do you?

I have had a few clients recently ask me what got me motivated in the very beginning… What was the catalyst that made me stop everything and start running headlong for fire and mud? I thought it would make a good “resolution recovery” topic for the first post of the year. ¬†ūüėČ

I would love to tell you guys that it was my kids, or my husband or some profound spiritual moment that shook me to my core… and that from that moment on- I was a changed person… and decided to take better care of my body and health. ¬†But alas… I was forever changed by excellent marketing- a promotional video from Spartan Race… I know, I know… *hangs head in shame*.

In this video they were highlighting “Team X.T.R.E.M.E” racing the 2012 Virginia Super Spartan… particularly highlighting¬†Cpl. Todd Love (Triple Amputee Marine) and Sgt. Todd Galloway (Double Amputee- Army). ¬†The imagery and interview of Todd’s dad are particularly moving, and the clips of these guys just kicking ass on the course- after a little morning tandem jump out of a plane- will get your pulse going and maybe even get you to sign up for an OCR. ¬†But the profound moment(s) for me are at the 8:00 minute mark (click here for the jump to the clip) where Noah says: “You know a lot of people tell me ‘I wanna do this, I wanna do that’. Well you know what? You gotta do it. There is no *want*, either you do it- or you don’t. You just… There are no excuses.” And then, immediate clip to Gary Love “That’s why he does what he does. There is no stop to my son. You know, he has no quit in him”.

It was a kick in the chest. This dude standing there with half an arm clearly visible in the frame- saying “either you do or you don’t. NO EXCUSES”. ¬†I remember just sitting there– (mouth breathing, I am sure)– staring at the screen… and the thought that flashed through my mind was: “What the fuck am I doing?! I have two very capable arms and legs… and this guy is getting up and down a rope with one arm and an ARMPIT”. ¬†From that moment in September 2012, it has been a steady drumbeat of realizing what I am truly capable of. ¬†I ran a Warrior Dash right away- just to try out this mud-running thing. ¬†I loved it. ¬†I went on to run my first Spartan Race (Atlanta Sprint), in March of 2013- 6 months after watching that video:

First Spartan 2013

First Spartan 2013

I was completely hooked and immediately signed up for the Super in Wintergreen, and the Beast in South Carolina to complete my Spartan Trifecta. ¬†The Trifecta consists of completing a Sprint (3-5 miles), a Super (6-8 miles), and a Beast (10-13 miles) in one calendar year… ¬†Here I am with my Trifecta Medal almost exactly a year after I watched that video:

Trifecta- Nov 2013

Trifecta- Nov 2013

 

And in 2014… I added in multiple Battlefrogs, Rugged Maniacs, Savage Races, and a few non-muddy street races like the Peachtree. ¬†I really feel like I embraced my inner athlete in 2014, and while I am not up to snuff to run with the elites, YET… I do finally consider myself a runner, and obstacle course racer:

2014 Racing

2014 Racing

(I do tend to enjoy the races that have a military beneficiary- Like BattleFrog and their support of Trident House… they even dedicate each obstacle to a fallen Navy SEAL… but its mostly because of how motivated I was by Team XTREME)

2014 was full of hard and scary moves, choices, and decisions- and some amazing opportunities and experiences. ¬†I decided to change careers from homeschooling mom, to full-time personal trainer (which was HUGE for me). ¬†I earned a bunch of medals, my RKC Certification, and learned so much about myself- what I am really about, and what I really want out of my life… which if I had to boil it down to one word- it would be “experiences”. ¬†I want to experience so much with my kids, my family, my friends, and on my OWN. ¬†That *on my own* part is a real game changer for me… 100% of my life up till late 2013 revolved what I thought I was “supposed” to be doing and what others thought of me… I finally stopped people-pleasing that year. ¬†I think I have fully recovered from that shit ūüėČ

I am not about to go all “New Year, New Me” on you. ¬†Actually the opposite. I really like who I am becoming.¬† I am not leaving anything behind in 2014… I am carrying it all forward into 2015. ¬†I have an amazing Client Roster at MBT, a race schedule that I simply CANNOT WAIT to accomplish, and a few non-fitness items on my bucket list that have me just… giddy. ¬†I have no clue where I am going or what everything will look like when I get there… but I am enjoying the wind in my hair and the beauty in the messy parts along the way. ¬†As a matter of fact, I hope that I never “arrive”… I am enjoying the ride that damn much.

And all of this because of a piece of marketing material. ¬†I am not saying everyone has to sign up for an OCR… by no means. ¬†But when something grabs your your attention, listen to it… get motivated… get passionate… and get after it. ¬†There is no want… ladies and gentlemen… either you do it or you don’t.

Much Love,
~January

January Shiflett, RKC is a personal trainer, kettlebell instructor, obstacle course racing coach, and resident potty-mouth at Maximum Body Training in Cartersville Georgia.   You can contact her for classes and training opportunities at January.Shiflett@me.com

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It’s Easy for You… You’re Fit.

beforeafter

“It’s easy for you”… it wasn’t always.

I have ran into this comment a few times recently… some version of “it’s easier for you… you are fit… you like this stuff… you aren’t out of shape.” ¬†I am not put off by it at all… but it always gives me pause. ¬†Perception is a funny thing. Most of my “friends” on social media and followers of my blog are aware of my struggle with weight, and my eventual progress with losing it for good… However, it has come to my attention that I have made quite a few new friends that don’t know my story, and therefore- have quite a skewed perception on my level of health-nutty-ness (there are crazies out there that think I don’t like candy y’all!). ¬†They just know that I am now a kettlebell fiending, obstacle course racing, lover of all foods whole and clean. ¬†But it wasn’t always that way. ¬†Just 3 years ago I was an obese (220lbs on a 5’9 frame), smoking, metabolically damaged, completely out-of-shape, unconditioned, uncomfortable, weak and unhappy woman.

I have previously outlined my history of how I got fat, what I did right with food, and exercise to eventually lose the weight. ¬†And while I have adjusted my food to follow more of a Whole30 food plan, and I now have earned my RKC Instructor certification… The highlight reel still holds true: ¬†good, whole, clean foods and lifting heavy things will get you big results. ¬†Now- 3 years after that Drivers License picture up there… I have started a career as an Personal Trainer and I get to run Obstacle Course Races in all kinds of awesome places. ¬†But the most important is that I am now happy in my own skin, I recognize myself in pictures again, I am no longer a smoker, and I am definitely NOT a weak woman.

3 years ago- to this very month I was searching too, looking all over for answers. And I can tell you with absolute certainty, the answer is YES. YES YOU CAN DO THIS. It comes down to consistent, daily, sustainable, and realistic changes. There will absolutely be hard days that leave you challenged to stay on your food plan, and there will be extraordinarily sore days after working hard for your goals… BUT YOU CAN DO IT. You don’t have to wait for a silly arbitrary resolution to get started… GO. NOW. Start today! ¬†Even a small change like tossing your soda for a water will put you one step ahead for tomorrow.

I would be honored to be part of your journey as you transform your life. Whether you are a mom looking to drop weight and get strong; an athlete that is looking to improve his strength and conditioning; or a weekend warrior needing to train for the next obstacle racing season… I would be honored to work with you as your personal trainer. I work out of Maximum Body Training in Cartersville GA, and I am RKC certified. I offer kettlebell classes, small-group, and private training. ¬†I want to be on your team. ¬†Feel free to contact me anytime for more details: 770-773-5987 or check out my profile at Dragon Door.

Major Announcement…

This symbol means business.

In 33 days I will be attending the RKC Workshop in Atlanta (Cartersville)… My trainer, Beth Andrews RKC is hosting it- and it will be taught by Master RKC Keira Newton¬†(I am loving the fact that this one is being hosted and taught by some badass crazy strong women). ¬†I am so incredibly grateful for the opportunity to attend this workshop and learn from the best of the best…

Blood. Sweat. Respect.

But if I were being totally honest with y’all- I would admit that I am also full of anxiety about this as well. ¬†This 3 day workshop will be the hardest thing that I have ever done in my life. There is about a 30% failure rate of all of those that attend this course. The amount of mental and physical strength necessary to even think about signing up for this workshop is incredible (check out the requirements here). It’s intense- all day for 3 days- receiving instruction, completing workouts, and then being tested on strength, endurance, and the material presented. It all counts- and any failure means you don’t receive your certification- it’s game over. ¬†Physically I have a mountain of strength, endurance, and technique that needs to be cleaned up and tightened up. ¬†Mentally, I need to pull my collective shit together and focus down on the work that is ahead of me. ¬†Becoming a RKC Instructor is a major goal, would be an epic accomplishment, and a ginormous step towards building my dreams… but it ¬†also demands that you commit yourself 110% to earn the respect that this certification commands.

So that’s it, that’s where I am at guys. I am heading into the cave… it’s time to tear it all down to the foundation and rebuild- both physically and mentally.