“I’m damaged goods.”

I was involved in a conversation with a beautiful woman who described herself to a new friend with a warning, that she was damaged goods. In that instant she robbed herself of all of the millions or reasons that make her an amazing woman with a beautiful soul. Robbed of talent, kindness, being a daughter, mother, friend, hard worker, the list goes on, in one little instant all that was good was given a STAMP. DAMAGED. Wow, all I could think was stop right there, we need to change your language immediately! Remember how important this is because your subconscious is paying very close attention. Imagine a spy with you 24 hours a day, listening to your every move and every conversation soaking up how you think and talk about yourself and believing every word! You are actually teaching your own inner self about who you are, based on who you “think” you are, which thankfully can be changed! You are not a on a conveyer belt waiting for a stamp so that you can be taken off the belt and put in the bin to be disregarded!

Mantra: I am presently struggling with a situation that life has put in front of me, I am a GOOD PERSON. Or I have been through a life situation that was not of my control. I am a GOOD PERSON. I will make it through. I deserve to be happy.

We experience all sorts of situations in life. But it is so important to be on point with your language and how you describe yourself. Yes, I know this is easier said than done, which is why I wrote my last blog about having black eyes for beating yourself up. After I wrote that Kathy and I would walk around and talk to women, pay a complement and then hear the negative come back and one of us would say, uh oh you need to read the black eye blog! Not only is it so hard to take a complement, we take it step further by warning people that we are damaged. HELL TO THE NO ON THAT ONE! You are a human being with a soul.

Take a moment and think about those experiences. They are surrounding you so much that you feel like they are who you are. Close your eyes and put them in a box. Imagine they are no longer a part of your being. They are now in a box, and taken off or out of you. Keep the box closed tight, lock it. Let the experiences stay there, away from your soul. Take a deep breath, take another one. Think only about yourself. As a living human being. Think about who you are and list 5 positive attributes. Write them down. ALL 5. Honor yourself for all the good.

Practice for a few minutes each day and change your language. It has to start with you! It HAS to. I tell my kids ALL THE TIME. Be nice. You tell people that too, right? Teachers tell they’re kids. Friends tell friends. You tell your partner when you need to, be nice! Sure you do. Be nice. You mean it when you say it to someone else right? I’m telling you to tell that to yourself. BE NICE TO YOURSELF! If we can’t then we shouldn’t be able to tell our kids to do what we can’t do. Imagine that! And the next time you meet someone and introduce yourself to them, give them the biggest gift you can, give them you and if they are lucky they will get to learn about your talents, love, loyalty, and everything that makes you special! Rock on!

Your Iron Beauty Coach,
Kathi Sottosanti
Health and Wellness Coach
NASM CPT

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Is it Hunger or Habit? by my client Jonathan Sykes

Stop me if you’ve heard this one. You enter a party or family gathering and you are so excited because there will be food. Not just any food too, but PARTY food. You know, the kind you don’t keep in your house. You try a little of everything and then move onto seconds, thirds, and maybe fourths just because it’s there. You got into the party swing and without knowing it, you have consumed enough calories for an entire day. As you leave the party you find yourself adjusting your pants because you stomach is stuffed. You feel bloated and you keep burping up different flavors from the food that you gorged on a few hours ago. Now, as your party bliss disappears and you enter the real world, the guilt and regret settles along with your overly stuffed stomach.
How about this one? Its late at night and you have been good all day. You ate the breakfasts, snacks, lunches, and dinners that you so carefully and precisely planned, cooked, and packaged the weekend before. You are lying in bed and the rumbling of your stomach starts. You get nervous because you know that you can’t sleep if your stomach is empty. Anxiety pours into your brain and the worst case scenarios start adding up until you feel like your skin is crawling and the only way to make it all stop is to eat something. “Just some almond butter and oatmeal is fine. Maybe some organic dark chocolate, that’s healthy right? Oooh, left overs!” You end up tricking yourself into believing that you need more calories into your perfectly calibrated diet just to find some solace from your mini-meltdown.
And how about this? You have been dieting for years. Literally years. Every fad diet, low carb diet, fasting ritual you could get your hands on and you never really saw success. The amount of diet blogs on your Facebook news feed is overwhelming and you almost feel like a professional dieter because you’ve been doing it like it’s your job. But where’s the progress? Where’s your success? You might yo-yo and lose 5 pounds here or maybe even 10 but then after you get tired of whatever diet you’re doing, the weight just seems to creep back up and you have nothing to show for all those squats you did and celery you ate. Why? Why does this keep happening? Everyone else is losing weight. All these weight loss blogs are showing these people who lose 100 pound and KEEP IT OFF. When is it going to be my LAST TIME losing weight so I can just move on with my life?
Science has shown us that the main idea of weight loss is calories in and calories out. The more calories that you eat, the more weight you will gain and the more calories you burn the more you weight you will lose. As someone who has run 2 half marathons, I will attest to the beauties of exercise and weight loss. But I am not a professional athlete nor could I keep up with that type of training schedule. So when the race was over, the weight came back. It has been said that weight loss is 80% what you eat and 20% exercise, which makes total sense. To burn off a restaurant cheeseburger will cost you at least 45 minutes of cardio. Over an hour for a slice of pizza. Over 2 hours for a slice of cake. Sure, if you were a professional athlete you could eat those things and burn it off. But I am guessing since you are reading this, you’re not a professional athlete.
I started an 8-week challenge program at a gym near my apartment, No Body Denied in Springfield NJ, and working with the health coach Kathi Sottosanti, I told her my main issue was night time eating. I would get the hunger pains and anxious thoughts and feeling the NEED to eat. She gave me a weird look which gave me the impression that this wasn’t normal. That made me feel like this might be the root of my problem. I eat great during the day and I was following the exercise program, but still, I wasn’t losing. I even gained a pound and a half. I was sabotaging my progress.
I shamefully had to tell my coach when I would eat at night and it pained me because I am the kind of person who works hard and generally succeeds at everything I do. The guilt would be so bad that I almost didn’t want to tell her, but I knew that I had to for this process to work. I would tell her that my stomach would rumble and my body felt like I needed to eat; like a void begging to be filled. She would keep telling me that there was no need to eat at night. She told me that the eating was a habit formed long ago and my body was used to it. Then something clicked; HABIT. I have been eating late at night since I can remember. I would stuff my face at every party I go to. What was the main issue for not losing weight? MY HABITS! The urge to splurge at parties was a habit, not a hunger. The night time eating stemmed from training my brain and stomach that at 11:30 every night I was “hungry.” This wasn’t hunger or food issues, it was a psychological issue. And luckily, I feel more comfortable fighting my brain than my stomach.
HUNGER OR HABIT. This new mantra is what helped me not eat in my sleep for 4 nights now. This new mantra is what helped me actually sleep THROUGH the night without waking up to eat. This new way of thinking has been my shield from platters of cookies, family gatherings feasts, and buying unhealthy foods at the grocery store. HUNGER OR HABIT. I would tell myself that my behaviors were habit and not hunger. The psychological effects of being addicted to food or using it as a crutch are powerful and in my opinion the root of why people can’t lose the weight.
So take a look at your life and your “habits.” Do you always go to McDonalds after work because you pass it on your commute home? Do you always get three plates of pasta at Sunday dinner because you don’t eat pasta all week? Do you feel the NEED to have whipped cream and that caramel drizzle on your morning latte every day? That need is not your body asking for food, it’s your mind following your habits. And habits can be broken. They say it takes 21 days for an old habitual act to dissolve and a new one to stick. My entire life I thought I was fighting a hunger, where in fact I was actually fighting a habit. And for someone who loves food as much as I do, habits are much easier to overcome.

Kudos to my guest writer!
Jonathan Sykes
Update: He has not eaten in the middle of the night in a week! First time since forever!
Thank you for the article Jonathan! Deep breath. So proud of you. And shout out to his awesome trainer Susanne Schoen who is kicking his butt while I kick his mind!

Stay tuned,
Your Iron Beauty Coach
Kathi Sottosanti


To my daughter and yours . . .

Life is whatever you make it. You have the power, even at your age of 14, to recognize that you are in control of your own destiny. My girl. You hold the cards. Your body is your temple. You own it and no one should be allowed to even enter the gate that surrounds you until you are ready for a guest. If that takes years then it takes years and sorry but he’ll have to wait. Why? Because you are so worth it. Why? Because no one is allowed to take from you what you are not willing to give. So don’t give it. Not yet. Not until you are so sure. So sure that he is so worthy beyond belief. Take the time to get to know life. Life has so much to give. Do not fall prey to the bushes! Oh don’t go there. Be stronger than that. I know it’s not easy. It’s what girls do, but let’s get those girls to not do it too. Let’s love them enough to get them out of the bushes. To get them out of their red cups. To not have to seek approval for their beauty from a young boy who cannot see it yet anyway because we are about the inside and they only see the outside. Stop answering every ding every time your phone rings. Our brains now operate much like Pavlov’s dog! We hear a ding and we think we have to respond immediately. We DON’T have to answer the dings! Turn off your phone. For one hour just be you. Make it two and I’ll have my daughter back. Make it 3 and I’ll see so much love. See what I’m getting at?

My girls. Take your time. Boys have no choice but to wait for you so if you are a strong force then they’ll wait. Do not give to them what you are not ready to give. Stay strong in your conviction. If it feels to like it’s too much my first thought is talk to mom. MOM BE READY TO BE OPEN! OR write me. Kathi@myironbeauty.com. We can work together. I want to help!

Your Iron Beauty Coach,
Kathi Sottosanti
Mom, Stalker, Friend, Trainer, Stalker


Do you have Black Eyes Syndrome? Time to abolish the Inner B*tch and find our Inner Goddess/God!

Who set the standard for what we are supposed to look like?  Aren’t you supposed to look like yourself?  Isn’t that person beautiful?  Then how come we are constantly, forever, always beating ourselves up?  Man oh man, if our mental problem was a physical problem, and our thoughts could leave marks, we would have bruises all over our body.  Imagine how many of us would be walking around with the face of a fight!  Only the other person in the ring is ourselves!  Our Inner Critic or Inner B*tch as I like to say!  If your Inner Bitch were a real person would you be friends with her or him?  Heck no.  Our IB isn’t our nice, that would be our Inner Goddess or Inner God.   They say we are most like the 5 people we surround ourselves with so think about your IB being your NUMBER 1!  Yikes! I for one, do not look at others with the criticism I dish out to myself, so why am I doing it to me?  Partly, because back in the day, all you saw was super skinny, no butts, no curves, when you opened up a magazine.  We have been comparing ourselves for far too long on the wrong ideals.  I’ll never forget when Linda Hamilton caught my eye in The Terminator.  I was so blown away by her muscular body in that movie and thought she looked amazingly beautiful.  That was a new beginning.

 

Life happens. We eat, we drink, we have parties, we miss the gym, we don’t work out, we have shame, guilt, we have kids, work, appointments, volunteering, laundry, we should sleep, we have pets, we have loss, we have life.  Don’t we have enough going on that we don’t need our Inner Bitch telling us more of what we already know?!  Ok, so life has been busy and I am not what?  Perfect?  Who says?  What is the standard that we work off of?  Is it national?  International?  Is there a committee for the Perfect Standard? I can’t seem to find it on Google!   Since I was a kid, I cannot walk past a mirror that I have to look into and not turn to the side. A check in.  As if after peeing, I am going to be so much thinner!  Hmm, how do I look?  Should I pull up the pant just a little to pull in the stomach before I head back out?  Or If I could just pull my face back a smidge I could take five years off.   I am not saying we should not work on our health, our fitness or ourselves, because I do it every single day.  My point is, let’s do it from another angle.  Let’s start by being nicer to ourselves.  Stressing over looks holds on to cortisol and that holds on to belly fat.  So let it go.  We are where we are today.  We got here for a reason.  Those reasons range in difficulty from simply being unaware to major life traumas.  So the first thing we can do and we can do it right now is GIVE OURSELVES A BREAK.  Start with some love so that you can start to believe that you are totally worth whatever it is you are seeking to do.

 

The nutritional guidelines were wrong for years, so if doctors and nutritionists and the government can get it wrong, then maybe it’s up to us to get it right!   I’ll need your help to be on my committee.  I will need as many of you as possible to join me and take the pledge!  Time to Abolish the Inner Bitch!

 

Here goes:

  • We will demolish our Inner Bitch and take away her/his power.
  • With that we will abolish the eye roll, grunt or sigh in the mirror.
  • We will replace our Inner Bitch with our Inner Goddess or Inner God.
  • Oh how nice that will be! She/He loves us and is so kind!
  • We will train our IG on our new rules and she/he will follow our lead, we will no longer follow theirs and our mood will not be based on what the bitch says on how we look, but how the IG treats us.
  • Our IG must tell us daily that we are rocking our mind, body and soul.
  • Our IG will look in the mirror and do the Fonze (who’s old enough to know what I mean, lol. Comb out, Ayyyyyyyyy.  Yeah, I’m good.
  • We will stand tall and be grateful for all body parts.
  • We will say Thank You to a complement and NOT respond back with a negative retort.

 

The new standard will start with exactly where we are today.  If it’s not where you want to be, that’s ok, in love we will move forward to amazing health.  We will honor our process and our progress.   Is this something you can start to do?
You are an Iron Beauty don’t forget that!

Look for Life and Fitness coaching coming soon on our website as we revamp and rev up!  Jump on board the train of moving each other forward in the best way possible, and keep surrounding yourself with people that want the best for you!  I know we do!

 

See you in great shape!
Your Iron Beauty Coach
Kathi Sottosanti
Health and Wellness Coach
Mom
CPT, Stalker, Friend
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OVERWHELMED BY THE IDEA OF EXERCISE? WHAT TO DO.

I have been exercising pretty much my whole adult life in some form or another. From gyms and aerobics in the 80’s, to the treadmill and walking with a stroller all over town with babies, to videos in my basement and then back to the gym life again. I worked at Shape Magazine and Cooking Light many years ago which sparked my interest in reading everything I can about fitness, food and the like. It’s obviously an interest of mine and I am still learning every day, making mistakes and trying again. I can faintly remember walking in to my first gym back in high school, it was for women only but still intimidating. Then in my 20’s while living up in Boston, where I did aerobics on an open floor right next to the machines! There was no private room and I didn’t know any better. Aerobics in front of everyone with no room at 23 years old with my thong OUTSIDE my pants, why, lol! Not sure how I did that! I am passionate about what I do, so I seem outgoing, but I have a shy side when I don’t know people.

Being a beginner to exercise can be totally overwhelming. I had a great conversation with a friend just this week about this dilemma. It’s so uncomfortable to be the newbie. To have to start from scratch. To feel like you have no strength compared to the people next to you. It actually brought her to tears as she let me know what she was feeling. I told her if you are feeling it, then so are so many others! She told me what she could not do in the class. We immediately changed that around. Think not about what you can’t do but about what you can do.  Then she mentioned that she had given up soda except for special occasions since starting.  Fabulous!! As a beginner, you have to have a starting point. Just walking through the door takes mental strength and bravery! That’s an accomplishment. Putting on sneakers to go for an intentional walk for exercise is an accomplishment. If it’s new or you are doing something you haven’t done before then be proud of yourself and honor what you can do even if you only make it for a short while! Walk out and say, “YEAH, I did a push up!” And tomorrow try for two!

Put yourself on your calendar. Like anything, if you give it time, then eventually the feeling of being overwhelmed will go away and it won’t feel like it’s ruling your life and will simply become part of your life. It’s important to keep yourself on your calendar, like you would for kids, sports, work and everything else you have going on.  Pencil in a walk in the park or your classes for the gym. Literally write it on the calendar!  YOU belong in your life!

GET TO KNOW PEOPLE! If you are walking outside, enlist a friend to keep you accountable. If you are going to the gym get to know people! You can learn a lot from others as they can learn from you!  We’re all connected somehow and we all need accountability. I hear it all the time, I don’t want to bump in to anyone, I just want to get in and get out. Ok, that’s a plan, but there is so much success in the web! The web of friends who post, check in and look for people. I have such an amazing group of people in my world, who have all cross- pollinated and look for each other. One of us will know when another one of us is missing and why. If it’s a case of lazy, we pull them back in. If it’s family issues or health, we send love and support. About a month ago I saw a new face in class. She saw a crowded room of people setting up, I saw her nerves and how she wanted to sneak back out. I worked my way back to her, introduced myself and now I am looking at a changing body. She told me on Friday how happy she was that she stayed that day! When fear kicks in people want to run and often won’t come back. That moment of connecting turned in to a pivotal moment for a happier, stronger woman!

Most importantly, do it for your health. We look at a big gym filled with people and think weight loss or muscle growth. However, science will tell you it’s so much more! As can be seen in the latest issue of Time Magazine article called The Exercise Cure, The surprising science of a life-changing workout, by Mandy Oaklander. “In studies where blood is drawn immediately after people exercised, researchers have found that many positive changes occur throughout the body during and right after a workout.” “Going for a run is going to improve your skin health, your eye health, your gonadal healthy.” “Doctors, researchers, scientists—even ancient philosophers have long claimed exercise works like a miracle drug. Now they have proof!”

Exercise comes in many forms and can be done in many places inside and out. You have to start somewhere. 80% of Americans are NOT strength training, which could be as simple as body weight exercises and is so important for the body to strengthen bones and muscles to keep us strong and in control as we age. Don’t know how to get started reach out to me. I am making coaching available for different levels. A few phone calls or emails to get you going could be just what the Dr. ordered! Email me for more details and don’t forget to sign up for Locker Room Chatter right here on the website! Thanks for reading and joining our movement!

See you in great shape,
Your Iron Beauty Coach
Kathi Sottosanti
Health and Wellness Coach
NASM Certified Personal Trainer
Mom, Stalker, Cheerleader
Kathi@myironbeauty.com
Facebook: Kathi Croston Sottosanti

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