This is not a New Year’s resolution, some crash diet or crazy workout plan. This is my life, and I’m changing it. The switch – so to speak – has flipped. I’ve decided to put my life back in check. I’m getting in shape – mentally and physically.

I’m done fantasizing about “what it would be like if…” I’m the only one who can make this right and my happiness depends on it. I’m done going shopping to look for pieces that hide my body. I’m done talking myself into things that I know will make me feel awful later. I’m done being the last one on the list to get love, attention and care. I give everything else in my life 100 percent – why don’t I treat myself the same way?

Fully aware that my attempts to do it alone were failing, I finally joined a personal-training gym, Shape Plus, and my trainer is Jess Hogue, the owner of this gym and someone who must recognize a cry for help when he sees one. I remember Jess telling me, “Most people ‘dream’ of having a great body. Flipping the switch means action! It means, stop dreaming about it and do something about it now! Most people have great plans or dreams but don’t act! People who are in great shape and feel great about their bodies are into action, and that action becomes a habit! Most people have a habit of dreaming!” And, I swear, when he gets going, almost everything he says really is punctuated with an exclamation mark. The point is, I’m part of a team now.

I’m scared, of course. Not because I’m afraid I can’t do it – I will have the tools and guidance to reach all of the physical goals. What’s scary is the unknown – I’ve never had enough discipline to keep a healthy lifestyle. It’s like a battered woman: she’s scared of being without her abuser, because she doesn’t know any better.

But, what I like about Shape Plus, and Jess, is that they keep it simple – which for a perfectionist like me, takes a lot of the pressure off. “Put on your shoes, tie your laces and get out the door now. Go to the gym, or just bundle up and go out your front door for a few laps around your block. Don’t worry about whether what you’re doing is the perfect thing to do. Instead, do something and gain the conviction that, no matter what, you are going to do this!”

Can you see it? I flipped the switch.

And, actually, Jess’s first piece of advice about how to get through those moments helps tremendously. Instead of dreaming of a different life while you’re sitting on the couch, dream while you’re ‘doing.’ Think of your dreams as goals – goals without limitations, he says. “Decide what you want, what you REALLY want, not what you would settle for. If you set your goals too low, you’ll never attain them, because they don’t turn on the switch. Set your goals high.” When I’m on the treadmill, I’m thinking about spring break bikinis, short skirts, leggings and shirts, super-high heels, buying hot jeans, walking into a room and being noticed.

In the coming weeks, I will be blogging about my experiences. Follow me as I Flip the Switch for good.

Click here for more information on where I’m working out

8 Responses

  1. Diana Gormley

    You go Laura…you are a true beauty..inside and out… and I am thrilled for you and your flipping of the switch!!! To live your highest and best is where it’s at my dear. xoxo, Diana

  2. David

    Great work and congratulations. Its great that Jess and his team and supporting me. He abandoned me completely. Hope he stays with you. best of luck.

  3. Winston

    Whether it was pushing that darned sled, or grunting out that last rep of the last set, Motivation was what I got there.

    My trainers at Shape Plus worked (and I mean WORKED!) almost 30 pounds off me this past autumn – and better yet, in addition to losing the weight (fat), they helped me put on muscle (shoulders, arms chest, leg) which is not easy to do at my age. Best of all I got in the habit of eating right and working out hard, so I’m continuing to drop fat weight. I weigh less now at 51 than I did at 35, and am well on my way toward my goal of being at my Army (22 years old) weight.

    This much is true no matter what gym/trainer you go to: you have to go all-in, don’t cheat yourself – give it all you got and keep giving. A positive attitude backed up by positive actions go along way. That’s what those trainers did more than anything else: they pushed me hard and taught me how to push myself hard. That’s my personal formula for success: Motivation, plus motion and sweat.

    My advice? When you mess up (we all do, me more than once) get back on the right way of eating, and get back in the gym, as quickly as possible. You owe it to yourself, be sure to pay yourself back.


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