Monday, 5 January 2015

What would you gain with 12 weeks of lifestyle coaching in Belfast ?

When Aine won the 12 weeks of transformative lifestyle coaching with the Belfast Life Coach (that'll be me then), she won it on the basis of a total turnaround of her life, to help her find her own solutions to her motivations to do the things in life which were important to her, this included motivational exercises which were used to build up, over 12 weeks, a massive catalogue of evidence to prove that the perceived impossible is possible, this programme started with forming the foundation to self belief then building on that, moving from milestone to milestone in a way that guides her to the ultimate destination..

12 weeks wont in itself turn a life around, but 12 weeks gives a firm platform of self belief, based on practical, personal evidence, which then serves as a lifetime safety net of intrinsic self belief.

Over the 12 weeks, Personal and group fitness was used as the tool for practical self belief building exercises, this was married to Nutrition and Confidence Coaching...

My core principle of forming a solid personal foundation stems from just three factors

1. What you eat
2. What you do
3. What you think / believe

Check out my book here and find out more...

The weekly reports are quite a long read
So here's a quick synopsis
All the reports (evidence) are at the end of the blog
Thank you for taking the time to read :)


We spent a lot of time covering the importance of nutrition, how to determine what works best and when to eat key food groups, all with the added benefit of not denying anything, just changing some timings around... This aspect went extremely well, however, because Aine quit the course before understanding the WHY and the HOW, and in spite of the evidence of extremely significant and positive results, ie, weight control, higher energy, sharper mental focus, more positive frame of mind, happier, brighter skin etc, in short, looking and feeling vibrant, there is a huge risk of relapse to shake based diets, something I am personally extremely 'anti', i have stated my case with evidence over the last ten years, and may have mentioned this in the feedback here too :).

Physically, Aine made huge strides (see the report at the bottom), her fitness levels increased a staggering amount, this was based on consistent hard work, early mornings, weekends, group exercise and personal training, this was all designed to drive self belief to an instinctive sense of 'I can'... it's only when a person believes that they can that they WILL have the motivation to DO as everything seems ACHIEVABLE...

This analogous approach was somewhat lost in the first 4 weeks as Aine had not done the background reading as prescribed, prior to, or during the course.

In terms of self belief, Aine had all the information, all the evidence gathered over 10 weeks to prove beyond a shadow of a doubt that 'she can', for the most part, with practical tasks, ie, running and eating, she could see and understand this as there were very real and tangible changes, ie, shape, energy, weight, performance, time, reps etc...

The final 4 weeks of the programme was designed to be an intensive 4 weeks to understand the WHY and HOW behind those successes, this to re-enforce the 'I can'.
This intensive 4 weeks period demanded a higher workload in terms of Aine providing timely daily feedback and answering questions I pose to her feedback in real time (or close to that), my questions were designed to help her understand the critical WHY and HOW.

Unfortunately, for whatever the actual reasons, possibly in part the outwardly intangible rewards, Aine never answered a single question I posed and ultimately quit the course at this key stage out of frustration and in the belief that the final 4 weeks was placing unreasonable demands...
This was a tremendous shame as Aine was at mere reaching distance of attaining the type of personal transformation that others dare even dream of, the net result of quitting just inches from the finish line was that the whole process was then devalued, worse still were the negative comments made by her and her partner via social media. This had the effect of devaluing not only the service offered, but also diminished the demonstrable results gained over the ten weeks, which were completed.

So, in short,  Aine did attain positive results as mentioned above, but as she left at the critical point, that being the most demanding, but equally rewarding for life bit, as such, she neglected to pursue a full understanding of the HOW, thus has little idea how to intuitively replicate these same results, what this means in the real world, is that Aine has thrown away the positive lessons of achievements through hard work and mindful effort, in favour of a long drawn out future of 'almosts' through short cuts.

The day will come (eventually),  where Aine may take a step back, breathe, then takes the time to understand the HOW and the WHY in order to escape a
 dogmatic life of the quick fix, yo-yo solutions. 

It's important to remember that there were 2 trades in return for 12 weeks of free intensive, comprehensive personal lifestyle coaching ;

1. That all progress and all communication would be reported
This was done in as complete a way as possible, on the basis of information provided in a timely manner, this information deriving from weekly, then daily feedback, plus feedback in journals and action planning... ie, how to actually get/attain the changes in the real world.
Ultimately, Aine is the one who applied for the program and wanted the results, So it's Aine who needed to put the hard work in... As such I could only report on her feedback and progress plus my own thoughts on where we 'were at' 

2. That any missed sessions / short notice cancellations (under 24 hrs) would be paid for in order to reschedule.
A number of sessions were cancelled at extremely short notice, sometimes for bizarre reasons, these reasons were reported but I repeatedly disregarded the re-arrangement fee.

There are 4 crucial lessons to take from this process, im sure you will identify these throughout the report.

1. What you believe you will achieve (or certainly have a far far greater chance)
2. What you eat determines everything, it drives energy, thoughts and physical ability
3. Lifelong results take consistent effort, for life! The shake diet / quick fix or magic bullet have inversely and wildly disproportionate side effects to the results they promise
4. Good habits and the self belief that comes with personal success, even when documented and used as positive evidence can be instantly eroded, if you fail to understand the WHY or the HOW

Week 1
Monday 15th September 2014

Initial Assessments 
Monday 15/9/14 @ 10 am (Results at the end)
Shaws Bridge

All the fitness results are at the end of this blog, so check her progress there.

Aine started her 12 weeks of enhanced lifestyle coaching this morning, she kicked off with a fitness consultation which included a range of readings and fact find to determine how healthy her 'mechanics' are, this was followed by a rather active set of physical assessments which gave an informed impression of her current physical abilities.

During the initial assessments we briefly discussed nutrition, not too much though as it's important to get an accurate appraisal of what Aine is currently eating and more importantly, how that food interacts with her, this is so her 'diet' can be optimised in a really easy to manage way, the simplest measures are often the most effective.
Aine was provided a Personal Journal which will be completed every day and reviewed weekly. Everything we do during the 12 week plan is based on the information provided in the Journal.

Personal Training - Tuesday 16/9/14 @ 10 am
Shaws Bridge

The purpose of this first personal training session is to encourage Aine to adopt a physical state where she's better able to move her body over a prolonged period of time, thus having her body needing more energy to perform, thereby encouraging her body to start using more energy stores (fat) as which will lead to one of the 12 week objectives.

The Challenge 

Aine currently has the belief that running is not her thing, she believes that she can't do it and does not foresee having the ability to run for more than one minute without collapsing into a big heap of sweat, tears and a sense of failure.

The Aim
Transform her negative thoughts of her running abilities into a strong sense of self belief, based on the immediate and empirical, cold hard evidence that she can infact run!

The Meat :
This session was planned to teach, in a crisp efficient and highly effective way, a number of lessons, leading to a greater understanding of running, and the subsequent building blocks of success and self belief through empirical evidence.

* Demonstrate that good starting technique makes running easier
During the fitness assessments, Aine had a running technique that many people adopt, it's called, 'running for your life then wanting to collapse in pool of tears system', this is flight or flight running, adrenaline based and employs the wrong energy system for the task in hand.

The energy system used for flight or flight running is a combination of the phosphocreatine system and the anaerobic system, we don;t really want that, what we do want is the aerobic system, and this takes more time to switch on than the immediate output of the PC and Anaerobic (without air) systems.

So... the first task was to switch on the Aerobic system, as mentioned, this takes time, so we walked, walked some more, walked faster, and faster again... the heart rate started to creep up, breathing become louder and then we walked a bit more again... By taking time to activate the Aerobic system, more can ultimately be achieved.

The walk took us to the start point where the running was to begin.
We named this bridge, 'A bridge too far'

* Work at a substantially higher rate to trick the body into accepting the ideal rate

After about ten minutes we commenced a jog, the pace controlled and deliberately slow, this marked the beginning of assessing Aine's comfortable pace... 
We ran at that pace for a minute then stopped, then increased to two minutes, then three.

Now that we've isolated the comfortable pace, we can play with speed elements, knowing that the safety net is always the comfortable pace and not walking.

So, comfy pace for a minute then a ten second sprint, returning to comfortable pace... This was repeated several times, reducing the time at the comfy pace....
The reason for this is to over prepare the body, so when it came to the longer distance [time] her body would find it much easier..

* The importance of breaking the goal down into manageable pieces 
When setting our to achieve something, such as run further than you thought possible, without stopping, there has to be a a way of achieving the aim in the same way, but thinking about it differently...

After a few minutes of running, Aine started to think about the distance involved then started to listen to the 'give up voices', this was the right time for the next lesson in turning fearful into cheerful when running...

The analogy I used was that If I were presented with a family sized cheesecake and was told that I have to eat it all (my worse nightmare) then I would struggle, I would feel over-faced with the challenge, looking at how much is left instead of how much I've eaten... BUT..... if you just kept serving me thin slices, then over time, I would devour the lot, and probably quicker.

Running is the same, (maybe not as tasty though)... in that you can break the challenge down, do this by looking for manageable way-points, a bench, a person a flower, etc, then aim for the next... just a few meters at a time seems so much easier than constantly thinking about the bigger picture... The net result being that you achieve the big goal by breaking it into bite sized chunks.

Over-thinking the goal in its entirety is fatiguing.
Breaking it down can be energising.

* To show that state of mind is the prime factor determining physical performance
Whatever you think, you will achieve, and sometimes those thoughts are creeping, especially those stealthy sly old ninja style negative thoughts, for this reason it's important to form a strategy, to deal with those automatic(knee jerk) negative thoughts.

When Aine started todays session, she said she could not run

I reminded Aine that yesterday during her assessments, she ran for one minute, so she can run, just not for as long as she liked...
Aine accepted this evidence and that acceptance destroyed the negative thought she had, but this sense must be re-enforced to keep that negative ninja at bay... wwaaaggghhhhhhhhhh ...!!!

As the run progressed, the self doubt ninja creeped up, now it's time to play dirty with negativity and keep Aines blinding running performance strong...

I asked Aine a question;
If positivity were an animal, what would it be ... she responded 'A terrier'
If negativity were an animal, what would it be... she responded 'A rat'

Aine was asked which one she prefers, she said, 'the terrier because rats are awful' (sorry to rat lovers, but really, they are quite minging!)

So I then explained to Aine that when you start listening to the negative voice telling you to stop running, you're accepting that the rat is your real preference, not the terrier.

The rationale for the animal question is that belief is often thought of as an abstract 'out there' thought, ie, it's not very physical, you can't smell it or touch it or even measure it, so what does 'belief' or positivity matter?
By associating belief with a real world abject, belief becomes a solid three dimensional entity... it becomes a real thing that you can directly relate to and as such your sense of belief becomes more real... In the end, you realise that negativity (through the association you formed) becomes the thing you want less of, leaving the positive ready and willing to take it's place.

Next time you're out running, just think....
How much sense does it make to believe that you can't run?

You can't prevent automatic negative thoughts, but you can question them based on amassed evidence, then challenge them and ultimately overcome them.

The outcome :
Aine ran for 17 minutes and 20 seconds on one go
This is 16 minutes and 20 seconds longer than she thought possible
And this is just day 2 with her 12 week programme ! 

The 'Bridge too far' is now known as the 'Bridge not far enough !'

Group fitness 
Shaws Bridge and Ormeau Park

It is agreed that Aine will attend an absolute minimum of 3 x group Bootcamping workouts each week of the 12 available.

Aine managed to attend 2 group workouts this week, during those workouts she worked out hard, not always giving herself credit for the results she attains, in her mind she struggles to accept that she 'can' perform well, then goes on to perform well.

Attending only 2 group sessions this week means there will need to be balance next week

Positively Confident - Friday 19/9/14 @ 10 am
Shaws Bridge

The first session for confidence build is based on highlighting challenges, successes and thought process, what we believe is what we achieve.

So far this week, positive change has been encouraged though exercise.

Todays session is all about enhancing mindset though nutrition, positive habit forming and confidence coaching through looking at successes etc

Initially, Aine told me that she wanted to lose weight and get fit, but there was more to her applying to this intensive 12 week plan than fitness alone, sometimes getting to that can take a while as the positivity and confidence element is the aspect that most people don't like to face... It's the very shy and withdrawn elephant in the room.
For this reason, I often sneak these aspects into the fitness bits :)
During this sit down session, Aine started off by telling me that up to starting the plan, she was (in her own terms)  quite lazy, as was her partner.

During that first week however she has already felt the motivation to make definite changes, some of them helped and encouraged by her family and partner.

Those changes include
Working out more
Consuming much less junk food
Less time sat around watching TV

One positive knock on effect of Aines coaching is that her partner has become more pro-actively interested in being more active...

However, i'm a realist and as such I know (based on empirical evidence) that everyone who rises to the challenge so enthusiastically also has a big fall, so preparing for that is the key...
It's like the phrase, 'In time of peace, prepare for war'

So to contextualise, when enjoying the highs from achievements, prepare for the lows of hitting the wall, and although that may not sound overly positive, it is realistic, a bit like ageing, a car running out of petrol or chipping a nail at the worse possible time.

Preparing to overcome the lows is key, otherwise you hit them and stick to them, I want Aine to bounce straight off them and into the highs again and to be empowered with the ability to do that herself :D

So to do that, we have to back track a little and find out what cause the 'Laziness' in the first place and why Aine applied for this plan.

As background, Aine is 10 months postnatal, portrays a very upbeat personality and clearly has a proactive mindset, ie, when her mood is on an 'upper' she will seek the answers to challenges, but when on a 'downer', the 'lazy' mood kicks in.

Many postnatal will be able to identify with the following ;

Feeling sluggish
Feeling 'fat'
Feeling lethargic
Feeling 'awful' about her appearance

Those elements conspiring to make Aine feel very negative about herself, which in turn adversely effected her body confidence, true inner confidence and the motivation to do anything about it... This then formed into a negative spiral.

The next session will focus around what formed those thoughts in the first place, the reason being that if those thoughts slip into focus (in Aines mind), she will be able to rationalise the self statements / automatic thoughts and use reason and evidence to positively deal with them...

These are where the focus will lie on the next 2-3 sessions of confidence coaching.

So, that's Fitness and mindset stuff done, what about nutrition...

Aine currently has an eating pattern which is intuitive and a definite improvement on the 'bad old days',  but it can be substantially improved to take into account the higher rate of physical activity, after-all, progress requires fuel.

The first finding, and the one which shocks Aine the most is that she is not eating enough, she is under eating by about 700 calories a day, this is forcing her body into a state if hyper efficiency, a state we really want to turn into energy efficiency for the purposes of the body composition goal.

When told that eating more is the key (1800 calories a day instead of 1100 calories a day) Aine looked at me like im completely crazy, but all that changed when I gave a rather nutty analogy based on the bodies use of abundance...

'The body runs like a chav, in that when times are lean, a chav will always have enough to store some money away (for grey joggers, weed and pit bulls etc aka it's operating more efficiently), but if a chav wins the lottery and suddenly has millions of pounds, then it will burn through that money so fast and with utter recklessness, that in no time, all
 that cash is gone, and then some (inefficient) ...'

In other words, starve the body and it will store a bit of every meal as fat (efficient), give your body what it needs (aka abundance), then it will become inefficient..
So do not fear food, but do eat strategically.

The basic lessons included were

Eat before a workout (about 140 calories or so - light and lean) : 

The analogy used was ; would you set off on a long journey and wonder why your car keeps breaking down, then calling the RAC.. the RAC man keeps saying (through gritted teeth), put some fuel in your car and you'll complete the journey...

Would you want to make the RAC man angry ?
Well, when you fail to fuel up before a workout, you're doing exactly that.

After workouts (About 150 calories - light, lean and clean)
Take in the materials to repair and strengthen your body, and set this as a priority, the all important dithering can happen afterwards...
Take a good clean source of protein and wash it down with fruit juice of an acidic nature (vit C aka Ascorbic Acid)

If you look at the fitness report below, you will see a nutrition framework dependant on the exercise routine that day

Homework for next week is to pre-plan all meals based on the daily nutrition frameworks (daily eating schedule in the fitness report).. the volume of the food or what the food is is secondary to the new habit forming routine.

Aine told me that she has 3 x sugars in tea... Now, as many of you will know, I hate sweeteners (read my book for an explanation), so the really easy bit of advice here (because denial is another word of preparing to fail) is to use organic / unrefined sugar, if she must have sugar in tea then at least have sugar with the micro-nutrients in tact (so there is some good there) instead of the bleached, processed and refined white sugar that has zero positive benefit...

That one basic suggestion helps to encourage the idea that change can still be sweet :D

End of week feedback by Aine
Due Sunday 21st September 2014

(received late : on Tuesday 23rd September 2014 @ 21:45)
Reflecting back on week one of my twelve week course i feel very proud. I did not expect to see much of a difference in the first week but I have.
On the first day we done the initial consultation we took several readings including blood pressure and body composition. In this session i also ran a mile which took around 12 minutes with great difficulty! 

During the week i also attended 3 group sessions (edit : 2 sessions were attended plus body mot, plus PT plus confidence) . The group sessions are great as i get to work alongside others and i can see where my fitness is compared to others. They are also great as we do a huge variety of different exercises. 

I also had 1 personal training session this week. I thoroughly enjoyed this as I got to focus solely on myself and how my body works and copes when exercising. In this session i ran 2.5 miles in 17 minutes and 20 seconds (edit : it was about 2 miles, but still a seriously impressive improvement in 24 hours) . This was a massive difference compared to the first day when i ran a mile.

This made me feel very proud and really built up on my confidence. Before starting the course I always said I could not run but when working with Mark in my PT session i found i can infact run, and I can run a good distance in a good time.... if i run at a pace that suits my current fitness level.

All week i have been keeping a food journal. Writing down all food and drink I consumed. I also had to take a record of how hungry i felt , how much energy i have and my mood at the time of each meal. This really helps as looking back on this i can see my best times to eat and also keep track on which meals work best for me in terms of keeping me full for longer. It also shows which foods are best for me to eat before and after training. 

The final aspect of the first week was the positively confident coaching. This is where I sat down with Mark and  we talked about the week and had a read through my food journal. This session was a huge help as it got me focused for the week ahead. We went through the charts that Mark had drew up and i was very surprised to find that i am currently not eating enough food for the amount of excercise i currently do. Mark suggested I write down times in my food journal that i will need to eat as sometimes i do forget that i have not ate! He also suggested that i try to plan some of my meals and snacks in advance so i know when i will be having them.

In this session we spoke about how i got to where i am now. I feel that I got here through being lazy. I would have preferred to sit infront of the TV than get up and go a walk or go to bootcamp! But Mark explained that by doing this I am just giving into my negative thoughts.
The confidence coaching really helped as I got to see how i have come on already im this first week. Speaking to Mark about how I can change my thoughts from negative to positive have really helped as i was always quite a negative person... the type that gives up before I even start... but by consciously changing my train of thought to positives I now see that when i put my mind to it and try... I can! ;) 

End of week 1

Week 2

Personal Training - Tuesday 22/9/14 @ 10 am Shaws Bridge
Aine cancelled this 10 am session (via text at 8am) due to her trainers being wet.

PT Rescheduled for Thursday 24/9/14 @ 10am Shaws Bridge
Aine turned up 5 mins late

Taking hill running in her stride
As usual, the personal training is designed to prove a point and to provide evidence re-enforcing the 'I can' thought to combat her automatic 'I can't' thoughts.


We started with a 5 minute walk to fire up Aines Aerobic / cardio vascular system, we have determined that this is the time Aine requires to spin up the CV system to then exercise at her current optimal (for longevity) rate.

The aim of the was to get the session onto a progressed and positive start, an evidence gathering exercise to convince her that progress is possible even beyond wildest expectations in such a relatively short space of time.

In last weeks PT session, Aine ran for 17 minutes and 20 second,
Today, Aines warm-up was to run for 20 minutes, so further progress with much more 
potential yet to be exploited


The hill - Aine had been fearing the hill all week, thinking it was going to be tough... but as with life, the challenge may look incredibly tough, but often the solution is really easy... different sides of the same coin... (so, an easy challenge taken for granted can be tough and vice versa)

The hill running with correct technique was the main aspect, the feared aspect and the one with the greatest reward, in particular for greater endurance when it comes to cross country style running.

The first hill 
This was negotiated by walking, this hill has a gentle incline with a ski ramp type finish, we walked it first and Aine was puffing and panting and struggling to reach the top... however, this was all part of proving that it isn't the hill that poses the challenge, it's how you approach the hill (her thought)..

So we walked back down

Next I instructed her on the more jumpy, plyometric approach, more bounce, like bounding up steps, but one step at a time, slow forward movement and short stride length, this makes things much easier on the body and means Aine can maintain an effort for much longer.

And thats exactly what happened !
We reached the top and Aine told me that it was easier than walking up !

I then reminded Aine that she needs to store that as evidence as she now knows that she 'can'.

Hill number 2
This is a very long hill and run from the canoe school up to Malone House, a lovely challenge to walk up, let alone run up !

Again, we walked up, again Aine struggled but persevered while verbalising the 'I can't' , again I reminded Aine that she can and she has more evidence that she can than evidence suggesting that she can't , so I asked why she thought she could not do it...
Aines answer was that it's a lot steeper and a lot longer than the other one.

Over time, Aine will fully grasp that self belief makes the difference between success and failure, everything starts with a thought (see positivity coaching below)

We approached the hill , jogged on the spot, more bounce from step to step, movings forwards slowly, reduced stride length... The principle that conserving energy even at the sake of speed is better than rushing headlong and then collapsing... All progress, no matter how slow, is progress all the same...

The other benefit is that by using the bounce (plyometric technique), potential energy is better exploited...

Long strides uphill (specific to starting out) exploits about 50% of the energy in actual forward movement and increases the rate of fatigue which can endure for several minutes, or worse case, result in a total stop..

The plyometric approach (as described) exploits about 65%-70% of all the potential energy in forward movement, thus reducing overall fatigue and ensuring recovery at the top of a hill is faster...

Grab an elastic band and do two tests

1. Stretch it halfway then let go., what happens
This resembles your muscle potential through standard running
Ie, sub-potential energy is stored then released

2. Stretch it then release it, what happens?
This is you muscle when applying the plyometric method
ie, optimal energy is stored then explosively released
ie, you bound explosively from leg to leg, step to step, exploiting more potential energy.
Gravity and impact loads potential energy in the muscle then that potential energy is explosively released resulting in the next step. This continues for as long as you maintain the plyometric bounce.

Group fitness
Shaws Bridge and Ormeau Park

It is agreed that Aine will attend an absolute minimum of 3 x group 
Bootcamping workouts

Aine has performed well and attended a variety of group fitness classes over the course of the week on Monday, Wednesday, Friday and a planned workout on Sunday meaning that 4 workouts will be achieved this week.

After the Sunday Shawsbridge 10am workout was the Diet group, Aine also attended this session.

Aine has thrown herself into the group sessions this week and has asked other clients questions which is great to see.

Aines confidence is coming on leaps and bounds and is a dependable 6am exerciser.

Positively Confident - Friday 26/9/14 @ 10 am
Shaws Bridge - Lock Keepers Inn (because they do good cake and coffee)

The focus -  'T' compliments biscuits but offends 'Can'.

Whenever Aine tries to do something new, the 'I can't' is verbalised, the big problem with verbalising 'I can't' is that it's already been considered in the mind, it is believed, and what you believe, is what you ultimately achieve.  

Saying 'I can' seems to be hard for people to say aloud, especially when approaching something for the very first time, however, when you look at it, when doing something something new, there is, logically speaking, a reasonable [50/50] chance of success or failure, the thing that tips the balance is whether you think (then verbalise) either, 'I can', or 'I can't'... 

So.. you might as well say out aloud, 'I can', tip that balance, create a more positive approach and achieve more as a consequence, as more is achieved you store those achievements as evidence so when you get the automatic thoughts of , 'I can't' you can argue the point and win, then succeed against auto negativity.

Last week we looked at positivity and negativity as animals (relating to driving self belief, aka the 'I can', today I used that analogy again, but with a twist...

Positivity is a terrier (I can)
Negativity is a rat (I can't)

I posed the problem that Aine has enough food to keep just one of those animals healthy, and only she can choose which one.

Which are you going to feed Aine?
Aine said she would rather keep the Terrier alive

The thing is, right now, Aine is saying she likes the dog more but is taking greater care of the rat, having this pointed out will ideally have Aine feeding the animal she says she wants to enjoy greater health... So, here lies a the dichotomy.

It is possible that when Aine reads my self help book - 'A Positively Healthier Lifestyle'  (provided 2 weeks ago) and possibly my blogs etc, she will view my advice and methods as being credible (based on evidence), at which point we can then start to make serious progress on the automatic negative thoughts, from that, exponentially positive results will be achieved.

Current challenges to confidence, positivity and motivation
Aine states there are none, all is good and continues to enjoy strong support from friends and family etc.
The confidence, positivity and motivation coaching is the major aspect of the enhanced lifestyle coaching service, if these factors are all okay, then the plan would make as much sense as sending a brand new car (with zero issues) for a major mechanical overhaul.

However, the relentless 'I can't' contradicts the above statement, so the immediate way ahead is to determine the why for the 'I can't'.

Life experience shapes our belief
What we believe we achieve

* Read the book - it's really important and I wrote it :D
* Take one hour of total seclusion, no phone, no radio, no tv, no distractions and think, analyse and determine WHY it is the rat has priority, when did the rat gain so much sympathy, what was the root cause, what are the ongoing causes of thinking 'I can't', what generated the lesser realisation of her own potential....
Once determined we may be able to re-visit similar incidents and overcome them, thus cancelling out the 'I can't' through reasoning, logic and achieving.
*Think about the WHY I CAN, develop the evidence and re-enforce the I can


Last week, Aine's homework was to try new, diverse foods and vitally, to forward plan her meal timings based on her nutrition framework (as per the reports below)  so this can then be advanced onto specific foods to optimise progression, but as this was not completed, todays advice is limited.
(I can only use direct evidence to make suggestions which optimises 'diet' advice)

However cutting through thatAine has started consuming acidic pure fruit juice drinks, though the bits were not to her taste, as such.
The 'bits' in pure fruit juice contain the fibre / roughage which slows down the sugar loading (Glycaemic Loading aka GL) and adds essential fibre to the daily diet with the ensuing benefits, ie, feeling fuller and improved digestion and more efficient digestive tract.

Juice without the bits is fine too provided it's consumed with a GL inhibitor, this can be 20 grams of regular fat cheese (as it contains a CLA - Conjugated Linoleic Acid - natures fat burner), or nuts or indeed, followed with some actual [hard] fruit, ie, apples, pears.

Fruit is currently lacking in her det, so more needs to be consumed.
This can be achieved by eating colours rather than focussing on

On a plus side
Started taking in energy (food) prior to exercise
Taking recovery food after workouts - (currently a glass of milk)

Homework this week is
* Pre plan all meal timings for the week ahead in the personal journal
* Eat 5 colours each day
* Ensure all readings are recorded
* Have the breakfast meal as dinner (swapped over )
* Have dinner as lunch (swapped over as more energy is needed in the day)

End of week feedback by Aine
Sunday 28th September 2014
This is what Aine has to say (in her own words with any edits in blue) about successfully completing the second week of her 12 week plan :D ;
Looking back at week 2 of my 12 week course i again can not believe how much I have achieved in such a short time.

This week I attended 4 group classes all again very different. I really enjoy attending the group sessions as you can get the support and encouragement from the others and I also get to work alongside people who have different fitness levels from myself allowing me to be able to push that bit more.

This week i also attended one personal training session with Mark. This weeks personal session was very tough! For my warm up I had a 20 minute run... Again advancing on the 17 minutes and 20 seconds last week. Each time I gain a few extra minutes it is a massive confidence boost as at the beginning of this journey I never believed I could run for more than one minute!  After warm up we then focused on hill running. We first started on a short hill going through the basics of how foot placing and use of the arms make running up hill alot easier.

After this we then moved onto a much larger hill. Using the techniques Mark had just shown me it made getting up a lot easier but it was still a massive challenge!

This week I also attended my second confidence coaching session in which we went through my food journal for my second week. We did find a bit of room for improvement in the way I am currently eating and the times I am eating my main meal. Mark explained that it would be best for me to eat my largest meals earlier in the day for breakfaat and lunch then as the day goes on to have smaller meals, like having cereal for dinner. Another thing we spoke about was writing down the times in my journal that I need to eat for the whole week as one thing I am currently struggling with is eating and snacking more than I did before! 

After the group training session on sunday morning there was a 'diet and tea' session held in the Lock Keepers Inn at shawsbridge. Here we talked about our diets and how some foods work for some people but are very bad for others and we also talked about how looking at the scales can not be a true reflection of your body and ur body fat. We talked about how muscle weighs considerably more than fat so if you are training and eating healthier then you may actually see your weight go up due to the gain of muscle. This session was a big help as I got to speak to the others about their diets and the changes they have made. One person explained how she had already been eating her main meals early in the day then a small snack later and how it had worked for her. This definitely gave me the confidence to try this from this week and see how it works for me.
Going into next week i have set myself a few new goals. This week i want to focus on why I always feel that I 'can't' do new tasks as this is something I always say before starting something new!

The other goals I have set is to try to eat 5 different colours a day to try to get a bit of variety into my diet and to try new foods I would not have tried before. Also i need to try and change my meal times around with eating a larger breakfast and lunch. 

End of week 2

Week 3From Monday 29th September 2014

Personal Training - Tuesday 30/9/14 @ 10 am Shaws Bridge


Once again we visit the running, as building up overall muscular endurance within aerobic fitness is the key to everything that happens next, in essence, todays PT session was a continuation of the work done so far, essentially building a super strong foundation.

The Personal Training sessions are one of the two hours each week where I get to determine additional information about Aine and the 'I Can't' reflex thought process that she has.... this crept in again today, but only after all the evidence had been gathered to prove (absolutely) that the 'I can' was an absolute certainty (short of an asteroid hit on Shaws Bridge)

The meat of the session was the 25 minute run (click the following image for full details) , the overall aim is to reach thirty minutes, at this point I know that the underlying cardio vascular fitness is there and the intensity can be built up exponentially.

Following the 25 minute run there was more hill running, yet another improved performance on last week, so great news...

Given the improvements and the mountain of evidence now at Aines disposal to prove that she 'can', Aine's initial knee jerk reaction remains as 'I Can't'. (see the homework below)

Physically, Aine is responding exceptionally well and somewhat ahead of the curve.

Next week Aine is on holiday, a valuable time of rest, but also a time where everyday is a choice to respect her improvements.

During the session I extracted a range of information
Aine has told me that she is now forward planning her nutrition in her personal journal, so that's great progress and will allow us to make the same advances with nutrition that we have seen with her fitness and physical resilience.

Aine's 'new thing of the week' has been Grapefruit juice, she does not like this at all, I have advised blending it with a banana to take away the sharpness...
The Vit C in acidic fruit juice is absolutely essential, I cover this in my book

Hopefully Aine will get an opportunity to read the book as it lays the foundation to the information i'm trying to offer, it also gives the 'why' for each bit of advice, thus saving me having to explain everything and use that time to focus on the improvements sought.

I asked Aine how she feels the overall training package has helped her with her confidence.
Her response was that it hasn't really, other than during the hours in her personal training and group fitness classes.

I asked if she has noticed a change in her approach to challenges, ie, assertiveness.
I was told there is no change, and then it was revealed that she has a tendancy to want to say something but backs off from doing this (as many people do), so, I've suggested that she doesn't back off, instead, Aine will face that fear and offer constructive comment at the time, instead of hyper analysing the situation where she almost said something, or nearly complained or almost paid a compliment, seize the opportunity etc.

* I have asked Aine to pro-actively challenge her thoughts of negativity and to question her automatic thoughts, this will be achieved by self checking everytime she thinks 'I can't', or if any negative insinuation is made / thought.

These automatic negative thoughts will be written down in her personal journal  along with Aines complete process of defeating the thought, this enables Aine to learn the skills aka, the self prescribed internal confidence chatter to truly be more positive, whatever the challenge, in fitness and in every aspect of life.

Every outcome is determined by your thoughts / beliefs, when you genuinely believe in what you say or feel, then the positive results happen.

In addition, I've asked Aine to take time to think, free of all distractions, as often as possible, when I say think, i don't mean mull over the news, I mean taking time to fully explore her thought processes and hunt for the answers as to how her negativity formed - lets get to the root of the problem.

The reason again is to aid Aine in determining the reasons for negativity, if we can determine why she listens to and obeys the 'I Can't', in spite of insurmountable evidence to the contrary (the the 'i can' is achievable), then we can make even greater progress with all aspects of Aines training.

When I asked Aine what new foods she had tried, she told me not a lot (other than the grapefruit juice) as she is happy with what she eats, I told her that if all she does is what she has done then she will only get what she has had...

The 'try a new food' thing is an exercise in challenging pre-conceptions in the drive to understand that change is good, leading to new experiences and adds to life.

Group fitness
Shaws Bridge and Ormeau Park

Positively Confident - Friday 03/10/14 @ 10 am
Shaws Bridge - Lock Keepers Inn (because they do good cake and coffee)

Aine cancelled via text due to a forgotten hospital appointment

Nutrition - Friday 3/10/14 @ 10 am

Aine cancelled via text due to a forgotten hospital appointment

End of week 3 feedback by Aine
This is what Aine has to say (in her own words with any edits in blue) about successfully completing the third week of her 12 week plan :D ;

Unfortunately, Aine has not provided any feedback from her 3rd week of training.

End of week 3

Week 4
From Monday 13th October 2014

Last week Aine was away on holiday, so the focus this week was on Aine getting back into the programme with as much ease as possible.... 'Ease' is of course used loosely...

Group fitness
Shaws Bridge and Ormeau Park

Aine made a positive start with the group fitness element.
As is the norm with anyone, frustration got the better of her over several occasion.

Aine has attended several workouts this week, ranging from 6am runs through to getting exceptionally muddy and soaked, thanks to the rainfall and soggy ground... Of course, that makes things all the better.

Positively Confident - Thursday 16/10/14 @ 10 am
Shaws Bridge - Lock Keepers Inn 

This was intended to be the main aspect of the week, partly because this was catchup from her cancelled sessions before her holiday and partly to try, again, to explain the reason for the course and how the whole thing works...

I asked Aine if she is starting to feel any different, Aine said no

I asked Aine if she felt physically different, she said not a bit

I asked her if her clothes felt better on, or if she felt more energetic etc, she said no.

Aine went on to state that she really feels no different physically or in any other way, although she feels more confident with her ability to workout harder and when running etc... There was no conveyance that other than the run time she has experienced any positive change whatsoever...
This is the precise opposite of what should be happening.

I then went on to explain that her first three weeks were all about doing the new, embracing change and accepting change as a fulcrum to life enhancement.
It has taken Aine 24 years to become who she is today, both physically and mentally, as such, it will take some time to rewire, in addition, Aine had only embraced the diet changes in the previous week, meaning that she has only experienced a week where her energy has been levelled off,  aka  she is now eating more in tune with life and her aspirations.
It takes time for the external obvious physical changes to happen...

Aine accepted that 3 weeks really isn't enough time to appreciate the changes made so far, afterall, this is a 12 week journey that is designed to transform every facet of the persons life, the fitness aspect is a very jolly side effect only.

So then the big revelation....

Even at this stage, Aine has still not found the time to read my book, perhaps this is due to not appreciating what the course is or not having belief or being fearful of substantial personal change.
Either way, this has contributed significantly to her not grasping the far reaching and life changing nature of the her 12 week course, so, once again, I resorted to explaining, this time Aine finally made the connection as outlined in my 276 page book, which explains everything (shameless plug... buy here) ...


On the Enhanced Healthier Lifestyle Coaching plan, all the fitness stuff without exception, is nothing more than a huge, tiring, sweaty, exhausting analogy for life, love, careers and all the bits in-between.

Let's overlook Aines clearly higher confidence levels, her enhanced team play and her new found ability for embracing positive change and dealing with anxiety (positive and otherwise), lets also forget about the enhancement to direct communication, being brave enough to speak out and loud, and let's also forget the increased sense of determination even when those inner negative voices shout their loudest... nope... instead, let's look at the biggest picture, the main element, the thing that changes lives...


On Aines first day, she believed that all she could do was to run for one minute, on the second day she ran for 17 minutes and 20 seconds.... how was this possible?
I'm no magician, I didn't run it, I didn't do anything other than offer encouragement, even then, that's only because I have 100% genuine belief in her real abilities, not her perceived abilities....
After that 17 minute run, I continued to push the point with a 20 minute run then a 25 minute run... Aine didn't understand the analogy, so I explained why this is so important.

Okay... so where am I going with this, i'm talking about life changing stuff and harping on about fitness again ..

Remember what I said? it's ALL an analogy...
In the beginning, Aine limited her potential to one minute, if she limits herself to one minute here, is she also limiting her potential to one minute in life?

It turned out we extended Aines potential from one minute to 25 minutes, in other words, Aines beleif in herself, in the beginning was only 4% of her current ability.

If we transpose Aines run result/potential to her life then what would she be capable of achieving and how would this effect her?
I asked Aine how this would effect her, that being if she could realise all that untapped potential, so  in terms of career, how would the jump from from one minute of potential to 25 minutes of potential effect her.... Her initial answer was , 'I don't know'


I then asked her another question...

What job did you want to do when you were younger?
She responded with 'helping disadvantaged young people' (words to that effect)

So... what changed?

It turns out that what changed is what changes many people... getting a job (any job), enjoying the money and then getting used to that as the norm... putting the dream on the back burner...

That any job turns out to be high pressure call centre sales role... a far cry from the dream... not even all that comfortable and these are the jobs that forge massive amounts of self doubt, afterall, you're only ever seen as being as good as your previous sales day.
Call centres have a massive turnover of staff, work based friendships are often cut short as people are fired or moved at will... An anxiety mill if ever there was one.

The thing is, Aine has already studied for two years within qualifications specific to her preferred career, then stopped (for two years), mainly for the reason laid out above (in the main), and now she feels stuck in a rut...

There is a part of Aine that believes chasing her dream is pointless, however, this is her limiting herself to one minute... I reminded her of her actual potential so far...

Currently, Aine works part time, has great family support and is in a better position to capture her dream than she had previously considered...
That being, she has the time, it might only be 2 hours a week, but that 2 hours each week is like a single brick, and as we know, the most impressive buildings out there are nothing more than many single bricks stacked on each other.

In other words, all those spare hours here and there will lead to the dream.
And all while having the safety net of being able to work part time during the journey!

This clicked with Aine and now she understand what the 12 weeks is all about...

The aim now is in forming action plans to capture the dream... 

As such, Aine will (this week);
Look at how to complete her degree,  on a part time basis if needed
Volunteer for an hour or two per week in areas that she wants to focus on

To do with immediate effect for the ultimate affect ;
Draw up a broad action plan (the end goal)
6 monthly checklist
Monthly targets
Weekly tasks
One thing each day to maintain focus.

So... back to where I started on this section...

Aines call centre work is a self limiting of potential to 1 minute (aka 4% of her potiential)

Her task now is to pro-actively work toward the 25 minutes and enjoy her 100%
Of course her potential is much higher than this too.

By enacting  these changes with pro-active and methodical, daily positive actions, Aine will (in time) enjoy the lifestyle and security, for her and her family, that she has visualised, imagined and deserves.
All due to nothing more than having, and acting upon, her emboldening sense of self belief.

And that's the point to the course !
Now we have that, the real work can begin provided Aine finds the time to read my book
(This should have been read before the course started)

Nutrition - Thursday 16/10/14 @ 10 am

Aine has spent the last week pre-planning her meals as per the previous discussions, (and as blogged here), as such, her hunger and energy, hunger and mood levels have started to even off... Comparing last week to her first week is like looking at two totally separate people.

From this point onwards, her nutrition will be fine tuned and isolated specifically to her preferences, tastes and the goal sought.

End of week 4 feedback by Aine

So far I would say that week 4 has been the most challenging week of my 12 week course. I think not only because i took a full week off last week but more because I have realised finally what is more important.

I am definitely my own worst enemy when I come to trying new things. I have a lot of support in this new experience both at home and with Mark but I still keep telling myself that I can't do the new challenges that Mark throws at me every week. This week I finally realised that!  

This week I attended 3 group classes. I could not believe how tough it was to start back again after I was away for a week. Mark did have to push me alot to get me back into it and I was exhausted after, but it did feel great to be back at training. I think in a strange way I actually missed it!

After not getting to my confidence coaching the week before I went away, I finally met with Mark this week to go through the past few weeks. First we went through my food journal. I have been trying harder with my eating habits, like when to eat, what sort of foods and also have been trying very hard to plan ahead so I have something to eat as soon as I get back from bootcamp at 7am and also having a bigger lunch and just some cereal and toast for dinner.

After this we spoke about my life and the work I currently do. Mark asked me what i wanted do do when I was younger. I always wanted to work with disabled children. I have already completed 2 years in university studying psychology which i stopped a few years ago... because, again I told myself that I could not do it, even though I was doing quite well. Mark explained that again from the first and second weeks... I am feeding the rat and not the cute little dog, I am telling myself that I can only give that 1% when I know I can actually give so much more! And, i think, through the realisation of the fact that I am not doing what I always dreamt of, that I am currently stuck in a job that I never thought i would do, with probably no hope of going any further... i burst into tears!! 

I finally get what mark has been telling me for the past 4 weeks. Stop saying I can't and just get on with it, because when I do that I quickly find that I CAN  do whatever I have set my mind to and I now have a heap of evidence to show this!

So this week I have a few things to set my mind to. I am looking at different ways of finally finishing that degree and getting to the point where I have dreamed of. I will also be looking at seeing about getting into different places to volunteer for a while to get some experience. And also I will finally get to read Marks book which I have now had for 5 weeks!

This week may have been the the toughest so far but it has been the week where I have realised where I want to be and what I want to do for my future. This course is not just about changing myself for the better physically,  although that is a great bonus,  it's more about changing myself mentally and doing the things that I have always wanted to do which no one but myself has stopped me from doing.

End of week 4

Week 5From Monday 20th October 2014

Personal Training - Wednesday 22/10/14 @ 3.30pm Shaws Bridge


This weeks Personal Training sessions was taken up with a Body MOT, analytic and report, you can see the results in the report at the end of the blog.

The most notable aspect during this phase is the serious improvement in her stamina, that being in the form of the run aspect of the assessment.

5 week ago, Aine ran a mile in 12 minutes and 5 seconds
Today, Aine runs a mile in 10 minutes and 4 seconds ! 

That result is in addition to greater upper body strength core integrity and anaerobic endurance.

Aines lung capacity and lung efficiency have increased significantly with her heart working more efficiently, ie, beating less to achieve more (due to increased VO2 max) - In part, this is due the 3kg of weight that Aine has lost too.

In short, Aines mechanics are now tuned up, and those improvements will drive the other physical changes that she is look for

Group fitness
Shaws Bridge and Ormeau Park

Aine attended a variety of workouts during the week, some of them extremely challenging, Aines renewed enthusiasm and self belief now has her throwing herself into the sessions.

During the sessions, Aine is noticeably more vocal and proactive, often being the first to volunteer :D  
This a total transformation from when she started, the phrase 'wouldn't say boo to a goose' springs to mind, but now..... watch out geese !

In addition to that, Aines overall fitness has noticeably improved, to the point where she is a completely different person to just 5 weeks ago.

Positively Confident - Saturday 25/10/14 @ 2pm
Shaws Bridge - Lock Keepers Inn (because they do good cake and coffee)

Aines progress in terms of positivity has been astounding over the last week.
There were a few eurika moments over the previous week which have formed the catalyst of Aines enthusiasm to get much more from life.

Aine has realised that potential is not for the dreamers, but that potential is for those who are brave enough to reach out and grab it.

Read Aines feedback (below) to determine what this means to her.

Nutrition - 
Saturday 25/10/14 @ 2pm

Looking at Aines Personal Journal, her diet has improved considerably, that being, it's now more in harmony with her lifestyle, ie, work, rest and play plus the demands of raising a child, all while being of benefit to her overall weight control aims.

Just 4 weeks ago, Aines food recording indicated that she felt sluggish, lacked energy and felt mentally constrained, in part, due to the foods consumed at that time, However, Aine now has a much more varied diet and consequently feels energetic, focussed and more emotionally 'high'.

If you were to look at both journals side by side (which you will in due course) then you will beleive them to be from completely different people, such is the contrast...

The way ahead is to continue trying new foods, focussing on the bright and vibrant to feel bright and vibrant.

As we now have balanced energy and hunger etc, we can now focus on fine tuning for the lifelong results desired. 

End of week 5 feedback by Aine

Week 5 has definitely been one of the biggest turning points so far. I am finally starting to see a massive difference in myself. I can really see and feel my shape completely changing and I have so much more energy than i ever did before.
This week i attended 4 bootcamp classes. I really enjoy getting up and going to the classes now. Not only do I know that i am going for a great workout but meeting new people every week is great too.

As usual all bootcamp classes were different to the last and this week, especially compared to last week, I really felt a huge difference in my fitness. I finally feel as though I can keep up with the rest of the group as I am now pushing myself as far as I can go, and also still alot of pushing from Mark!

My confidence this week is the highest it has been in a very long time. Seeing my body change over the last few weeks and feeling alot healthier and fitter is only the start of the reasons why I feel my confidence is up. The fact that I am now finally looking into changing my work life   around is definitely a big reason as to why I am feeling so good this week.
One of the things I wanted to do this week was to  look at different courses and placements to do what I wanted to do 10 years ago... work with disabled children. But as I got looking into it I began to see that there was so much more out there that I could do. I have changed a lot over the last time 10 years and now that I have woke up and realised I can do pretty much anything I put my mind to I now have a goal of choosing something I would love to do and just do it!

 I have been continuing to fill in my daily food journal. I have been working very hard at this over the past 2 weeks now and am really seeing a difference. I eat so much more than I did before but now I am eating nice, healthy,  colourful and new foods that I would never have tried before.

 This week has definitely been the week for big changes. I knocked down that huge wall that was right in front of me last week and can see a huge difference in all aspects of my life and also in my body. So for week 6 i have one goal... I will be brainstorming all week, choosing courses I am interested in findi g pros and cons and seeing which ones would be best suited to me. I am now no longer afraid to change things in my life and am finally excited about the prospect of going back into education and getting out of this job that i hate! :)

End of week 5

Week 6From Monday 27th October 2014

Personal Training - Wednesday 29/10/14 @ 3.30pm Shaws Bridge

At the start of a running based Personal Training session, I love it when a client tells me that they have a running based goal coming up, especially one that they may believe to be really tough going.... It allows me to prove a point...

Todays case in point was mind over matter, but this time, Aine was not informed that we would be running over 5k, mostly because I didn't know we would be running over 5k until she informed me that she had entered a 5k race, this takes place in mid November...

The session was originally planned as a 30 minute non distance specific run, in other words, proving that Aine can run for 30 minutes. I know she can run for much longer but this was scheduled as the last of the foundation building exercises.

So, we got started, GPS record switched on, timers set and in my mind.. just keeping Aine moving for the extra ten minutes instead of an extra five !

Aine was under the impression that we were just running for 30 minutes, it was only at the end that I informed Aine that we had just completed the 5k, so when she comes to the event in a couple of weeks, she knows she can already do it.

The reason for this was to prove that if the opportunity for the knee jerk 'I can't' doesn't even get a look in, then all that's left is the 'I can'! .... which then becomes... ' I did' or 'that was easy!'.

This lesson applies to the other facets of Aines life right now...
Every single piece of evidence, every success, every lesson, every session, every day, Aine has been gathering hard evidence to prove that she 'can do', and achieve....  absolutely anything.

I will let the stats do the talking from here on in, other than to say, well done Aine... huge strides have been made and this proves beyond any shadow of a doubt that you can do anything !

 Click for the GPS tracked run data


Group fitness
Shaws Bridge and Ormeau Park (timetable here)

Aine attended 3 workouts during the week which focussed on a range of workout styles, alll designed for mixed fitness abilities.


Positively Confident - Friday 31/10/14 @ 10 am
Shaws Bridge - Lock Keepers Inn (because they do good cake and coffee)

Nutrition - Friday 31/10/14 @ 10 am

End of week 6 feedback by Aine

In week 6 I attended 4 group sesdions and had my first PT sessions since returning from holiday. 

The group sessions were quite tough this week given the fact that there was a theme of 100s! However, I still get alot from the group sessions as the weeks go on they seem to be getting tougher! 

The PT session this week was extremely tough! Atvthe beginning I made the mistake of telling Mark that I have signed up for a 5k run! The aim for the PT this week was to run for 30 minutes. The prospect of this was frightening enough as a 30 minute run was something I never envisaged doing at the beginning of this 12 week course but today was the day it had to be done! 

When running the support from Mark is invaluable. If running alone Ibknow I would stop as soon as I get tired. However the support and encouragement from Mark is a massive help.
Getting close to he end of my run it felt like I had been running for ages as i was completely shattered but it always makes me feel amazing when I see that bridge! Even though this week Mark made me run over and past that bridge!! It wasn't until I read Marks blog a day later that I realised that I had been tricked into running 5.2k!! I know that if I had of been told that I was setting out to run 5k I would never have thought it possible! Showing me that its all in my head! Even though the 5.2k only took about 35 mins, 5 mins longer than i was supposed to run, running that extra 5 minutes feels like a massive achievement.
This week I have continued to fill in my food diary. I am still having lunch as my main meal and cereal and toast for dinner. This week I felt that was getting a bit repetitive but Mark advised that I can eat pretty much anything I would normally eat for breakfast zo it gas been good bring able to change that a little. 

For this week I am also looking into different courses to start as a way of changing my job as I feel this is the main thing that is holding me back now. :)

End of week 6

Week 7From Monday 3rd November 2014

Personal Training - Friday 7/11/14 @ 10am Shaws Bridge

The personal training session this week took a slight departure from the running theme, mostly because the initial point has been made with the running now, that point being, that once the comfortable pace has been reached, any distance is possible.

So, today was an introduction to resistant based movement and high intensity / power based training ;  This involved moving across the ground but with a 15 meter length of thick rope, via jogging , dragging and pulling... this is extremely fatiguing and challenges the muscle fibers to breaking point...

A picture paints a thousand words, so moving pictures must have an in-exhaustive amount of things to say, so watch the video (it will be here soon, so check back).

VIDEO here (soon - check back)... :D


.Group fitness
Shaws Bridge and Ormeau Park (timetable here)

A range of rope based workouts as the theme for the week.
This included the somewhat expected slams and other power moves, but mixed in with balance, proprioception, rope coiling, running, shoulder raises as a team as well as individually, plus using the rope to drag a power bag up a super slippery and muddy hill


Positively Confident - Friday 7/11/14 @ 11 am
Shaws Bridge - Lock Keepers Inn (because they do good cake and coffee)

Again, this has been the main focus of the week and given that Aine has responded extremely well to the fitness and nutrition aspects, and taken onboard the life coaching lessons within those aspects, the Positively Confident coaching now takes a very proactive lead.

The remaining time of Aines 12 week plan is now focused on forming and enacting positive and substantive life changes...

During the session we discussed how her planning had progressed from thinking about change to realising change...

The following points were raised

*. Aine has decided on a Beauty course
*. Aine became disinclined to complete her degree (with 2 years complete)

The beauty course is a super focus for Aine, she has plenty of time to go out and try as many things as possible for the greater good of personal life experiences, okay, this may not be the original plan (as per the earlier weeks), but it's a decision and hey, I might get a free haircut ! :D
Aine has followed this up with gaining some information and looking at enrolling.

While chatting with Aine (At the Lock Keepers Inn), I asked her about her relationship with completing tasks, the focus behind this being (of course) the degree course as she stated that completing that was no longer a priority as there was no real need for psychology in the beauty industry... .

So... I explained a little about how psychology is extremely useful within that industry, especially when blended with marketing (which relies heavily on psychology) to gain new customers by using the carrot or the stick... (fear of loss or the imagination of gain)

I asked Aine a question...

If you become really successful in your hair and beauty business, how useful would it be to have a greater understanding of business management, accountancy and marketing?

Aine realised that those skills would be great, and Aine identified the reasons why they would be extremely beneficial...

1. Finishing the degree (part time, possibly distance) would mean completing a really important task that has frustrated her, as it currently just hangs there... waiting.
(she's onto my motive for asking already !)
2. Business skills would be advantageous to starting her beauty business or any business.
3. Her business can be the best in Belfast, but not if people have trouble finding it, marketing experience and a fuller understanding of it would be advantageous.
4. Accounts - to keep HMRC happy or at least to understand the process and legal issues when employing staff etc.

So, it turns out we can solve a number of challenges in one.Aine has decided that finishing the degree in parallel to any other course is a great way to go - As much as i would love to say, you must complete your degree, it's better for Aine to identify this for herself, along with the reasons why and then to identify the overall benefits...

From that we progressed onto longer term planning, meso and micro cycle planning to proactively attain the dream (not just think about it) , these are recorded in her new objectives book ..

1. We formed a five year vision (Aine will supply this in her feedback)
2. Set out a 12 month action plan
3. Established a monthly overview
4. Monthly overview broken down to weekly objectives
5. Weekly objectives broken into daily actions
6. Every day, a positive action is recorded and progress is made to the goal

I will leave the rest for Aine to tell you....

Exciting times with very real progress and a supernova bright future

Nutrition - Friday 7/11/14 @ 11 am

Very few pointers on nutrition as Aine is really getting into the swing of things here...

The one main consideration is for dynamic adjustments to meal times, that being, if Aine is not feeling particularly hungry, then to record this and record the reason for eating the next meal or delaying the next meal, from this, we can start to fine tune Aines eating schedule and start to adopt a blend of regular, strategic and reactive eating...

This can only happen when you're more intune with the needs of the body and know what you need to consume, and more importantly, understand when what you don't .

In short, this is what some may call 'nit-picking', however, this is fine tuning and optimisation, all based on the deeper understanding of the critical WHY...

When lessons are based on recorded evidence, everything is easier to achieve...

This has all been a learning curve for Aine, that said, the nutrition aspect, while offering practical challenges has been  a relatively seamless and graduated process, meaning that the lessons learnt will be life long intuitive lessons with positive effects for her entire life.

End of week 7 feedback by Aine

During week 7 I attended 3 group sessions and had my PT sessions with Mark.

This weeks PT sessions was, by far, the hardest, most challenging and exhausting session I have had!

Usually when I meet Mark for my PT session we would have walked to the bridge and began running for a set amount of time, so imagine my reaction as I walked up to Mark standing beside a 15k rope!

At first i had to walk up a steep hill 'the hill of doom' with the rope around my neck and on down the path until we can to a tree where we done a few exercises with the rope. Then i had to fold the rope up put it back round my neck and jog back down the path and down the hill. At the bottom we unfolded the rope put it round my waist and I then had to jog back up pulling the rope with me. Again I done this until we got to the tree where we done some more exercises,  which were considered my 'rest period'! After going back down the hill with the rope around my neck I then had to walk backwards up the hill pulling the rope with me until I got to the top of the hill. After that my hour of torture was over! This session was definitely the toughest I have done but after when I think of what I achieved it makes me feel very proud. 

One of the first weeks, when we first just walked up that same hill i had to stop in the middle as my legs were so sore, and to think that just 7 weeks later i was jogging up with a 15k rope around me is far beyond what I thought I would achieve from this.

This week at my confidence coaching we set out my five year plan. Over the past few weeks I have been deciding what I want to do in the future in terms of my career. So finally I have decided that I would love to do a beauty course, which I have signed up for to start in January.

As I have already done 2 years in university I have decided that I would like to finish my degree and am now getting information on doing a business management or accountancy course in college. The main thing to focus on now is getting enrolled on the course of my choice and finally changing my job to have a career doing something I am interested in and enjoy doing. 

Also this week I have been continuing to fill in my food journal. This has been going very well the past few weeks as I now feel i know when is the best times to eat and when I don't need to eat so much. For the next week I will continue to fill in all meals in my journal and continue to eat as I have been for the past few weeks.

End of week 7

Week 8Wednesday 12th November 2014

Personal Training -  Shaws Bridge

This was taken at Shaws Bridge in Belfast, the workout was designed as a re-visit to a workout that Aine found utterly exhausting right at the beginning of her journey.

This involved a fairly challenging run to The Rose Garden and utilising what I refer to as , 'The Steps of Doom' to work Aines legs and triceps in what was a demanding workout.

Despite not getting too much sleep due to baby teething, Aine completed the session with determination.

Now is a good time for Aine to give her feedback on what she got from the session, as is the pattern for the final four weeks :D


Group fitness
Shaws Bridge and Ormeau Park (timetable here)

A week of challenges with more mixed style group workouts.
Aine continues to attend the 6am sessions and completes each workout with ever greater 'ease'...

The end of the week posed a big challenge, that being to climb to the highest point in Northern Ireland, that being Slieve Donard (Mourne Mountians), the perfect analogy to display the immense progress that Aine has made, unfortunately, Aine was unable to attend this adventure training day, however, there is one more opportunity for Aine to take part in a similar event before the end of her program.


Positively Confident
Shaws Bridge - Lock Keepers Inn (because they do good cake and coffee)

Aine has been at work on forming her entire re-mapped future, from a life where she could only think in the short term, that being the nine to five of being cooped up in a call centre high pressure sales farm, then home, then sleep, then repeat ad-infinitum.

Now, her entire has opened up, it is brighter (blindingly so in many ways) and Aine has glimpsed at all the potential that is ahead of her.

The main challenge right now is within focus. Aine is currently looking at a future where anything is possible, but this comes with the danger that all those possiblities could feel somewhat overwhelming...

As such, Aine has been asked to focus on immediate goals in a strategic manner, for instance, finishing the degree... 

We re-visit the degree because this is the safety net that Aine can draw on for life, it can be strengthened from experiences and is always a constant positive....

Career choices will change over time, sometimes subtly, sometimes drastically, ie, choosing to [seemingly] drastically change her next career path from an ;
Altruistic based career (aiding vulnerable people - highlighted as her lifelong dream role) to a  career within the vanity industry (beauty and image).

On the surface this could seem like a WTF moment for many people, this is due to the extreme contrast between the two, but this is Aines life, Aines choice and Aines prerogative to determine her own future without the societal expectation to stick to an original plan, afterall, life is fluid.

Aine's main personal concern, relating to the sense of feeling overwhelmed, is the sudden re-entry to learning, to help in that I have asked Aine to do (and record) a positive action each day... This could be watching youtube videos or doing background reading on her courses, this aids in two main ways ;

1. She gets back into the habit of learning and wanting to learn
2. It makes the transition back into education more controlled and gradual instead of sudden shock.

So... From next week, and her final four weeks, Aine will be taking the lead in reporting, I will be standing back a lot more, by doing this, Aine will start to take complete ownership of everything she is doing, gradually lose dependency on my input and confidently stride into the brighter and unlimited future that she has realised,is hers for the taking.

Nutrition - 

Aine slipped a few times with her meal timings through this week, this had the effect of increasing hunger levels (predictably), so the lesson learnt from this is that the meal timings being followed are correct for Aine, this was further demonstrated on the days following the slips which displayed improved food satisfaction levels..

On balance, Aine is enjoying greater energy, mood and hunger control while living a real world life full of real world challenges and experiences.

The coming final four weeks are all about re-enforcing the pattern, further super fine tuning and the final developmental stages of optimising her diet.

This is to be achieved with Aine self critiquing her previous day and taking her own lessons onboard to optimise by herself, thus gradually becoming less and less dependent on my input while taking 100% ownership of her own diet, this then setting her up for life.

End of week 8 feedback by Aine

During week 8 i attended 3 morning group sessions and had my PT session and confidence coaching with Mark. 

This week has been a little more difficult than normal as my little girl is currently teething so I haven't got as much sleep as I normally would! I really felt this in the group sessions as getting up at 5.15am on just a few hours of sleep was very difficult!  But I do feel that from being more active I have a lot more energy even on the days that I got very little sleep.
In the PT session this week we moved on from the hill of doom and ran to the steps of doom! The up hill run at the beginning to get to the top of the steps was a killer. The lack of sleep this week really took its toll in this session and it was apparent my energy was lower than usual. The PT session involved going up and down the steps doing different exercises then running the uphill journey to get to the top of the steps to make my way back down again.

This week I have continued to fill in my food diary. The only thing I really need to focus on is trying eat a little more in the morning and afternoon as sometimes there can be quite a gap between the times I am eating. The other thing I have done this week with my food journal is on Saturday I had a look back at the week before and have wrote down where I maybe could have improved my meal or where I maybe should have eaten between meals. This will be a great help over the next 4 weeks as I can now look back on this week and see what i can improve to help me get the best out of my final 4 weeks.
This week I have also got some information on finishing my degree. I have sent off for some prospectuses and had a look online to see which courses would suit what I am interested in doing in the future. 

This has been great to help me focus on what I want to do going forward. Even though it may take a few years to finish my degree I know that it will be well worth the time it will take, not just for me but for my little girl and the future of my family.

Being 2/3rds of the way through my course I feel a massive difference in myself. Not just while at the bootcamp and personal sessions but in my everyday life. I have more energy,  I eat better and my self confidence is a lot higher than before. Over the next 4 weeks all this can only get better and I plan to set in stone what I will be doing with my future. 

Compared to before I started this journey I see my future being a lot brighter. Before this I felt I would more than likely stay in the same job I'm in which doesn't really offer much opportunity to go further. But now I know that I am making changes for my future and going back into education to get a better job for me and my family,  I am much more excited for what my future holds! :)

End of week 8

Week 9Monday 17th November 2014

Personal Training Feedback by Mark and Aine Shaws Bridge

This weeks Personal Training session was her third set of physical assessments and body analytic, this is designed to determine how effective the physical aspect of the life coaching has been so far, it also gives indicators of where more focus is needed... All in the name of achieving more, faster.... through the use of imperical evidence of what works best.

The numbers are impartial, they don't care, they are only ever objective, this is the main reason for assessing, analysing and testing... In short, it's much more effective than the subjective statements of either , 'of course your improving', or ', yeah, i think im improving'.. The numbers give the brutal truth !

As it is, todays brutal truth happened to be a perfect set of readings ;

* Improved body composition
* Reduction of weight
* Good reduction of fat
* Slight reduction in lean tissue.
* Improved aerobic endurance

* Increase of running speed, One mile in 9min 43 secs (from 12 min 04 secs)
* Increased heart function

* Increased lung function
* Increased upper body strength
* Increased core strength and integrity
* Increased lactic threshold
* Improved recovery rates

In short, ALL the numbers went the right way !

So.. well done Aine...

So, that's my feedback from today... Aine is now in the driving seat and will give her feedback on how these makes her feel in terms of fitness, achievement and sense of empowerment.

A short video of the assessments :D 


Monday by Aine
Today I had my fitness assessment. I feel I made great progress as i took 22 seconds off my one mile run from my last assessment 4 week ago. I also made good improvement on my sit uos, press ups and burpees. These assessments really help as I can see the improvements i have made over the past few weeks.

Group fitness feedback by Aine
Shaws Bridge and Ormeau Park (timetable here)

What did Aine get from her sessions?
Aine will tell you :D

I attended my first evening session of bootcamping in a while as I would usually attend the morning session. I feel attending the different session helped as it gave me the opportunity to work out with people that i wouldn't normally. This helped as I was then able to work with people with different fitness levels than I would now be used to and was able to see how I would match up to them and I feel i done quite well!

Today I attended my usual 6am bootcamping session. These sessions are always great as the variety of workouts means we do something different every day. In these sessions I have seen a big improvement in my own fitness and also my how I cope with the new things we try as before I would have always thought I was unable to do the new workouts but now i am able to just get on with them.


Today I did not attend any bootcamping sessions


I did not attend any bootcamping sessions today however I did go out a run alone today. This is something I would never have done before i began this course as I simply thought I could not run however I now have a lot of evidence to show myself that I can run and I now have the confidence to go out alone on days I was unable to get to a class.

Today I was unable to attend any bootcamping classes.

Today I attended the 1am group session. We revisited the place wecwent on one of my very first sessions. This was great as I could see the difference between the first day, when i felt completely drained after running the trail once, and today where I was able to run it 3 or 4 times. Although today was still tough as there was a few extra exercises thrown in! But being able to see and feel the difference is always a great boost.

Positively Confident feedback by Aine
Shaws Bridge - Lock Keepers Inn (because they do good cake and coffee)

Aine will provide a daily insight to all factors determining her positivity, the challenges to it and the methods used to overcome those challenges.

Aine will also show all the actions, which she is carrying out on a daily basis to further her journey via career path, learning and daily gratitude etc...


Today i sent off an email to University of Ulster Coleraine to see how I go about getting the evidence of the points I have already gained. Getting this information will help as it will show me how much more work I will need to do to complete my degree.


Having attended the different class than normal today has really shown me how much my confidence has went up over this course. Before I began I wasn't really a shy person but meeting new people was not something I done that often. Now, as there is new people coming all tge time, I feel alot more confident in talking to them, asking them questions and then working out and interacting with them also.


Today I looked at a few different YouTube videos at different make uo tutirials. This will help when I start my beauty course as I will have a better understanding of tge different products and techniques i could be using.


Today I met with Mark for my confidence coaching session. As usual we went through my food journal and had a look through my daily records I have been keeping. These sessions with Mark are a massive help as I always realise how much I have achieved that week and it helps me to bring the whole week into perspective. I always feel great coming away from these meetings as I can see the great progress I am making everyday.


Today I had a look at some more YouTube videos. This time I looked at some hair tutorials to try and get some information on different techniques. I also had a look to find oyt some of the different reading materials I might use in my business course that I could begin reading. This will help me to become familiar with some of the terms and what I will be learning. 


Today I had I had a look further into the business course I will be doing and found out some more information about the different aspects involved in it. This will help as I will have a better understanding of what difference modules will be involved.


Nutrition feedback by Aine 

Aine will be self critiquing each day and providing her solutions to any 'issues' that she encounters do do with her nutritional requirements, again, this is about Aine taking ownership and responsibility for her own actions, this is all part of a controlled departure from service as we're now in the final 4 weeks of her life coaching.

This week I will be focusing alot on trying to eat a little more in the morning and afternoon. I tried this last week also,  but still feel there is some improvements that I can make. Eating more early in tge day sill ensure I keep my mood and energy up to getvthrough my day as I do jot need as much energy in the evening.

The nutrition aspect has been going well over the past few weeks as I have found what works best for my body and for my changing lifestyle. To help me stay focused on what I am eating I always prepare my meals the night before, especially on the days I have work as I would have always had the temptation to eat while at my desk before. So having healthy snack already prepaed really helps with that.

I have been continuing to eat a little more earlier in the day. I can feel this really helping as i was not as hungry later in the day. From this I felt my mood and energy were better today than before.

After meeting woth Mark today we have noticed a pattern in my eating. In the afternoons, between my meals, I have been just having one or two pieces of fruit and Although my hunger has improved from before, I am still quite hungry between some meals. So from now I will be trying to eat something a lityle heavier and more filling between meals.

Today I tried to eat a little more between my meals to help fill me to ensure I'm not as hungry. So instead of just having some fruit i had some almonds also. This seemed yo really help as I was not as hungry as usual when it came to my next meal.

From looking back at my journal i found that at weekends I always eat less than during the week so today I tried hard to eat how I eat every other day. I feel that the nutrition aspect is going well as i am not feeling as hungry and my mood and energy levels are a lot higher than before. 


Again today was about trying to eat as I would on normal days as on weekends, especially Sundays, I always seem to eat less. I dine this by preparing some snacks that I could carry with me as I knew I would be out. This really helped as I was able to eat tge same amount and keep my hunger levels down and my mood and energy up.

End of week 9 feedback by Mark

At the start of the week, Aine was tasked with self critique and daily reporting on Nutrition, Confidence and Fitness.
The reason for this is to enable and empower Aine to see how the changes are making a difference in her everyday life....

The whole basis of the course is that eating well, thinking better and moving more heightens every aspect of life, this first week has seen Aine reporting on the course itself and the immediate goals associated with it,  and less so on the daily effects on her life...

It should be noted that taking an introspective and focused look on various aspects of your life can be quite a tricky thing to do... where do you start? what's relevant and why would anyone need to know that let alone myself?

In the first week of self analysis, Aine has faced the same challenge that many people may face, so, for those reading this blog and interested in positive and constructive self analysis, this is  how Aine's approach will be in the coming week when analysing her Nutrition, Fitness and Confidence each day ;

* The start point is in isolation, that is, removing yourself from all distractions.
* Think about the then and now, ie what changed and how does that effect you
* What are you doing today that you would never have done yesterday?
* How does all that make you feel?
* What can you do (immediately) to make improvements?

By doing this, writing it down and actioning her daily analysis, Aine is effectively sourcing her own solutions and taking full ownership, she is also reminded of the improvements made on an emotional level as apposed to emphasising the physical , as they both drive each other...

For those catching up at this point... 
The whole basis of the life coaching service, as detailed in my book ' A Positvely Healthier Lifestyle' is on my principle that 'what you eat, what you think and what you physically do' effects every single aspect of you, they are inexorably interwoven, as such, they must all be consciously developed in order for you to enjoy the absolute best that your life should or could be offering you right now...  ;

* Feel confident in new situations
* Positive when faced with new challenges
* Motivated to complete tasks
* Feel more mentally astute, sharp and focused
* To boost, gain or re-gain fitness, agility and flexibility
* Enhancing energetic flow
* Minimising injury or repairing faster then injury happens

So... Over the coming days, Aine will be portraying less about the minutiae of the course itself and more about the effect of the course, on a day to day basis.

So... stay tuned for the last 3 weeks, this is where all is gained and retained or lost, only Aine can choose and that choice is driven by action and more importantly, understanding the WHY behind that action... .

End of week 9

Week 10Monday 24th November 2014

The entire concept over the final four weeks is that Aine identifies the specific 'WHY' for her improvements, this can only happen with deep self analysis on a daily basis, this self analysis focuses on daily actions, how those actions make her feel and what led to that, plus the outcome, if that outcome is directly determined by her direct action...

This is a quick fire feedback system and is designed to encourage a positive feedback loop, this loop facilitates a much deeper sense of self actualisation when it comes to fully appreciating the vital connection between eating it, doing it and thinking it...

* What you eat determines how you think and the energy to exercise

* What / how you think determines your diet and that determines your energy to exercise
* Exercise determines your requirement for energy, this drives the food types you eat and the ensuing hormonal response effects how you think.

(the interaction is much more complex, read my book for a better understanding)

All of this is to better equip Aine with doing more of what is working.

This is the single most important stage of her coaching as this is where all the self affirmations and realisations are made or indeed lost, that's a choice that can only be made by Aine

Fitness Feedback by Aine

Submitted Tuesday @ 21:59

Today I attended thec6am bootcamping session. I prefer to go to the bootcamping in the mornings as it helps to start the day off better. When I have been to bootcsmp in the morning i always feel I havecalot more energy throughout the day.

* How did you feel on the day specifically, as opposed to the generic ‘always have lots of energy’?
* How did your increased fitness and energy help you in terms of energy / mood and self esteem today specifically?


Submitted Tuesday @ 21:59
Today I did not attend any bootcamping sessions.

* How did you feel about not attending the class?
* Why were you not able to attend?

* Did not attending effect what you ate and how you felt?
* Did this make any specific difference to you at all during the day and why?


Submitted Wednesday @ 23.33
Today I attended the 6.30pm class. I done this as I reallyvenjoyed the evening class I went to last week. Attending this class was great as again I got to meet some new people that I have not before but also because

* What did you get from attending this evening specifically?

* What was your interaction with the new people?
* But also what ?


Received Thursday @ 20:25
Today i was supposed to have my PT session with Mark however we decided to spend more time with the confidence coaching. With not attending a class this morning I felt I did have quite a bit of energy that I needed to burn off later in the day so decided to go a run this evening. After the run I felt much better and felt I would be able to relax and sleep better tonight as I did not have as much energy.

* Where did the excess energy come from?* How did you feel about taking yourself for a run? 
* Why did you go for a run and not have a beer to relax
(ie, what prompted the exercise route)
* In what way did you feel better after the run
* When you say you did not have much energy, do you mean as a consequence of going for run or was it some other reason?
* How did you replenish your energy?

Received Friday @ 19:43
Today I attended the 6am bootcamping session. I have noticed that I am recovering alot quicker from the sessions as previously I would have been very sore for the next day however today I already feel fine even after a tough session. I think this is because I am physically alot fitter and I am eating foods straight after working out to help my body start recovering quicker.

* The fitness element of the feedback is not exclusive to attending classes
* How does your more rapid recovery help in daily life?
* What food did you eat after todays workout that helped specifically 


Received Sunday 30th November @ 23:15 
Today I was unable to attend bootcamp as my partner was working and no one could mind my daughter. I don't really feel much of a difference from not attending a session as I think it has been good to have a day to let my body recover from the rest of the week although I did feel i had a little more energy in the morning that I would have burned off at bootcamp but possibly due to the amount of food I ate my energy dropped again later in the day.* The fitness element of the feedback is not exclusive to attending classes* How did you use the excess of energy to best effect, to improve your day or that of others?
* How did exercise effect your state of mind / confidence / motivation / well-being etc 

* How did not exercising today effect what you ate today, and WHY?

Received Sunday 30th November @ 23:15
Today I attended the 10am bootcamping session. I felt very tired during the session as before going I had only eaten a banana so my energy was very low and I have found before that eating just fruit digests quite quickly so therefore would not give me the energy I need to complete the session. However during the day when I had eaten some more my energy increased alot and I felt I was better able to compete other things I had to do as my mood and energy were both quite high.

* The fitness element of the feedback is not exclusive to attending classes
* What did you eat after todays workout to increase your energy (specifically) and WHY
* HOW did exercise effect your state of mind / confidence / motivation / well-being etc

Positively Confident feedback by Aine
Shaws Bridge - The Lock Keepers Inn (they do good cake and coffee)


Submitted Tuesday @ 21:59
Today I received an email back from University of Ulster about getting my points transferred. The email contained to print and fill out. So i have done that and sent it away. This is going to help me see how many points I already have and get the transferred over to my new course.

* How did receiving the email make you feel, what was your first thought?
* How did returning the information make you feel?
* What else in your life effected your frame of mind today?


Submitted Tuesday @ 21:59
Today in work I was asked to look after a team who did not have a manager. During this time I has to give advise to collegues and yell them what they had to do. Before this course I would not have been able to to do something like this. But today I was able to do it with confidence and felt I was able to make a difference.

* Why were you chosen to cover for the manager?
* Why were you not selected to cover the manager before this course started?
* How did you accept the role and interact with your peers?
* What difference did you make on the day?
* How did all of that make you feel specifically?


Submitted Wednesday @ 23.33
Leading on from the management roll I was given in work for 1 day yesterday, today I was asked take on a coaching role from now on. This roll will involve taking collegues on a one to one basis and taking them through where they are at in terms of their stats and bonus. I took on this roll as I feel it will be a great experience for when I have finished my degree and look into opening a new business as I will have built up this evidence that I can speak to people one to one and can coach them on their strengths and weaknesses. Getting this role made me feel great as it shows that my confidence I had yesterday was recognised and I can continue to build on it while I am there.

* Specifically, why were you chosen yesterday (which then led to today)
* What direct actions have you performed to earn that trust - aka ... why now? 

* how did you feel about being given that task?
* How did you get the confidence to carry out the task and what drives it
* How did it feel to 'feel' recognised

* How will you sustain and build on that?

Received Thursday @ 20:25

Today I received an email from a company I had ordered some things from online to say that they would be delayed. I needed to find out some more information on when they would be delivered. Usually in this situation I would have send off an email and wait for the response but today I decided to give them a call and speak to them directly. Before I would have not have had the confidence to do this as I was weary that I would not have been able to express how I felt when speaking directly to a person, but today I felt confident enough to call and speak to a person. This makes me feel really good as it shows me how far my confidence has come even with small everyday things.

* What drove that confidence?
* Where did that confidence come from?
* What was the outcome of the call and why do you think that was the result?

* Did you carry the resultant self esteem forward to another action?


Received Friday @ 19:43
Today was the first day of my coaching roll in work. As I anticipated I had one person who was not happy with being coached by someone who was at the same level as them. However I was able to overcome this and stay calm to explain that this would be my new role and I would be doing this type of coaching with them from now on. Before I may not have been able to explain this and maybe would have got another manager to explain but I feel that the self confidence I have gained through this course helped alot towards me being able to fully explain my new role.

* What technique did you use to overcome the work challenge?
* Everything you have done to date within your life coaching course has been defined by empirical evidence, what evidence did you use make your work position clear?
* We discussed using positive examples to outweigh the negative / challenging examples. Explain what happened in the immediate aftermath of the cited situation, what was the positive outcome that you can use in future when this happens again?


Nothing Received


Received Sunday 30th November @ 23:15
Today I spent the day decorating my christmas tree, this is something I like to be specific about. I was doing this with my boyfriend who suggested we change some things about how it was done. Before aI would have maybe just changed whatever anyone thought should have been changed but today I was able to discuss everything and decide for myself how I wanted it to be done. I feel I was able to do this as I have become more confident in myself and now trust my own judgement from what I have learned throughout the course. I feel that the food I ate in the afternoon gave me the energy to do this task and also gave me the focus I needed to not only decorate but to think properly about what I wanted to do when I was confronted with other options.

* What were your specific actions to resolve your conflict it & what did you discuss specific to this example ?
* What did you eat in the afternoon and in what way did that provide the energy to decorate a Christmas tree?
* What were the 'other options', what was your thought process when choosing
* How did your physical fitness aid you in this task?
* Was there a follow up positive action, if so, what was it?
* How did your partner feel about your actions?

Nutrition feedback by Aine 


Nothing submitted

* Why is this blank?


Submitted Tuesday @ 21:59
With being in work today I had prepared all my meals and snacks beforehand. I done this to make sure I had all my meals ready to eat. This makes me feel more prepared and lets me knkw I have the food I need to eatvthat dayvto keep my energy and mood up all day.

* How does preparing your meals in advance make you feel as you're doing it?, ie, does it feel like a chore or do you enjoy doing that?
* How does this affect your work on the day specifically?
*How does this affect your energy on the day specifically?


Submitted Wednesday @ 23.33
From looking back at my journal today I found out again that eating fruit alone does not fill me at all. In the morning I had just some fruit on its own and by the time I came to my next meal I was very hungry. However later in the day when I added some almods in with my fruit I was not only able to last a little longer but I was not as hungry. From now I know that I will have to have some nuts or something similar to help fill me until my next meal.

* Aside from hunger, how does feeling 'full' help you?

* How did eating better effect your focus / state of mind
* How did eating well effect your energy
* We discussed adding nuts to your fruit consumption ten days ago as a definite trend, with assertions being made over the last 8 weeks that this was the case, so why is this only being actioned and realised now?
* What happened to make you action the above?
* How does taking that action make you feel?


Received Thursday @ 20:25
Today I ate well. Even with not having done any workout until the evening I felt I still had a lot of energy and felt my mood was quite high as a result of the food I had eaten.

* In what way was your mood higher (a reference point)?
* What was you mood prior to the food you ate and why?
* What do you mean by 'ate well'?

Received Friday @ 19:43

Today i was unable to get my lunch at the time I normally would as I was busy in work. This meant that my mood and energy dropped a little in the afternoon but I found that once I came back from lunch I had more energy and was able to concentrate a bit better as I had a healthy, filling lunch.

* Why were you unable to get lunch on-time when you mentioned on Tuesday that you pre-prep your meals and snacks for work to overcome that specific issue?
* In what way did your energy drop off? Physical / emotional or a combination?
* What was the effect to your outlook, performance and focus
* What difference did the lack of energy and subsequent regain of energy have?
* Define a healthy filling lunch

Received Sunday 30th November @ 23:15
Like other weekends before I seem to have eaten less today than I normally would during the week. I am not sure why this seems to happen but I just do not seem to have many snacks between meals as I would during the week. Due to this my energy was quite low at a few points in the day but that then picked up after I had eaten.

* How much should you be eating
* What was the difference in what you ate compared to what you should be eating?
* What is causing you to not follow the nutrition planning again?
* If you have identified a pattern of feeling hungry and you have recorded evidence of this, then WHY did you not act on your findings?
* How did this effect your state of mind? Why do you think it had this effect?
* How did this effect your physical resilience / ability / endurance today specifically

Received Sunday 30th November @ 23:15

To ensure that I had all my meals and snacks ready I prepared them the night before because I think this could be why I eat less during the weekend as I would not mormally do this. This morning during my bootcamping session I was very low in energy and felt very tired as I had only eaten a banana before attending although later in the day after I had ate my mood and energy did increase as I ate a healthy, filling lunch. Later in the evening I also felt my energy decrease as I did not eat a snack as I normally would have.

* Why did you only eat a banana when we identified weeks ago that this does not work for you?
* What is stopping you from following the key aspects of the nutrition advice which is proven to work? (As recorded in your personal journal)
* How did your low energy level effect your mood, sense of well-being, motivation etc, and why? - Give specific examples.
* How did your low energy level effect your food choices for the day, ie, what did you eat specifically? 

Week 10 feedback by Mark

After Aine had attended the 6am Bootcamping class at Ormeau Park, I spoke with Aine about the vital importance (at this stage) for daily direct feedback relating to Nutrition, Fitness and Well-being, once again, I expressed the importance of identifying the 'why' behind her actions and the 'how', ie, how did those actions make her feel.
I provided her with instructions, verbally and in writing and Aine agreed to provide said feedback in a timely manner and on a daily basis

We currently have the PT session plus confidence and motivation coaching pencilled in for Thursday, Aine is to confirm whether she is able to attend this

No feedback received today
No confirmation for Thursdays appointment received yet


Sent a text to Aine asking about the feedback for Monday, she apologised for having forgotten to send it but will send it when she finishes work at 5pm

Feedback for Monday and Tuesday was received in the same email at 21:59
The vague nature of the feedback suggests that it was all written at the same time, over a maximum of five minutes, as opposed to taking five minutes each day, for each aspect, to consider the impact on her life. I will read through this properly in the morning.

No confirmation for Thursdays appointment received yet

This morning I wanted to have a chat with Aine to reiterate the importance of the daily feedback, that being, to have it returned in a timely manner and in the correct format as briefed (on several occasions).

I got up earlier than normal to go through the feedback as Monday and Tuesdays feedback was provided together, in the same email, late on Tuesday evening.

Unfortunately, Aine did not attend the 6am Bootcamping workout this morning, so verbal feedback has not been possible yet...

Aine attended the 6.30pm workout.
On completion of the workout I reminded Aine that I require her daily feedback in a timely manner, daily. Aine looked quite exasperated and verbally indicated that she was not happy to provide the daily feedback (suggesting it's a bit much and too time consuming).
I explained again why this is important... ie.. understanding the 'why' and the 'how' for her daily feedback in order for me to provide her with timely rolling dynamic feedback.
(This increases my workload but more importantly, enhances her end of course result).

If the 'why' and the 'how' is not understood then there's minimum foundation for future development, yes, there will still be a positive shift in confidence, positivity, energy, fitness, and all that nice stuff, but it will be temporary as opposed to life long, as the fundamental understanding of how to maintain it, build on it and learn from it will be lost.

Aine has just over 2 weeks left to fully understand the WHY and the HOW.

So long as Aine continues to treat nutrition, activity and thought as isolated aspects of life, as opposed to overlapping factors, with each aspect effecting the other, then she is missing the entire nature of the 12 weeks... this overlapping relationship is detailed in my book,
'A Positively Healthier Lifestyle' (read it) . This was stated as important foundation reading prior to Aines 12 week course commencing, Aine read this at about week 5/6 of the course.

Aine confirmed that she would like to take the PT aspect on Thursday at 10 am

I received Aines Wednesday feedback via email at 23:33
Aines feedback is copy and pasted 'as is'.

My task now is to determine WHY Aine is stalling at this stage and figure out HOW Aine can turn this around.



An extended confidence coaching (Belfast Life Coach) session at 'The Lock Keepers Inn' from 10am

No Personal Training this week as the fitness aspect is on a positive trend while the full understanding of WHY has seemingly flat lined.

From 10:00 until 11:30 am we chatted about how everything in life depends on three factors...

1. What you  do (activity)
2. What you eat (diet)
3. What you think (belief)

These points are detailed in my book, this leads me to believe that Aine has not read the book, this should have been read before her free course started, TEN weeks ago.

Aine told me that she was struggling with the concept of thinking about nutrition, exercise and confidence, this was then used as a start point...

The 90 minutes was spent going through the direct relationship between the three factors above and using Aines additional work responsibilities as a team coach / mentor to cite examples of analytical thinking, ie, publicly raising good performance much more than publicly condemning poor performance, installing a culture of positivity and hope as opposed to a culture of fear.... In other words, taking a new perspective on challenges.

While that's a work based example, this comes into effect with analysing herself, ie, taking a different perspective, looking at the the relationships between food, fitness and though, noting how they are related and then looking at improving and repeating the positive instead of focussing on the negative...

So for example, where Aine reacts more calmly to a new situation, ie, a performance review.
On the surface you might not give it a second thought, you just accept it with greater ease...

BUT WHY !  why are you able to accept a performance review with greater ease?

An example response for the confidence aspect (after analysis) may be;
'I took the work monthly review in my stride, as I feel mentally sharper, this could be due to a hormonal system that's better in balance due to eating the foods I really enjoy (guilt free), while taking in the nutrients that my body needs, and because i'm eating well, i have the energy to perform much better with my fitness pursuits, to the point where i'm often shouting at others at the class to catch up, this is a new found confidence of speaking out boldly amongst 'strangers', as a consequence of those factors, I genuinely stand taller with great posture, I look purposeful and more importantly I have developed the self belief and personal conviction, through a solid evidence trail, which clearly demonstrates my superior performance at work, as such, I take performance reviews in my stride, more so, I now find myself looking forward to them, as every review leads the way to more improvements that hones my performance further'...

That's the degree of connectivity between eat, do and think that is involved in everything that everyone does... if any of those three factors are amis, ie, the diet is poor, then the hormonal system would be off balance, energy would be low, physical exercise would suffer, posture would not be enhanced and self belief would suffer...

So... in future feedback, Aine will cite an example of positive improvement in her fitness, diet and confidence that takes into consideration the factors as above...

The reason is that over time, Aine will develop an automatic check list of what drives positivity in all aspects of her life based on understanding the WHY and the HOW for the better YOU.


As usual in this phase, all our communication regarding this aspect is blogged so you can reference it in future, so when you look back at this aspect, you see the same progression that you made the same sort of progress with your mental agility as with your physical agility.

Like the fitness aspect, this takes a tremendous effort.

Remember, I’m asking the questions after each entry for you to provide the answers, (I assume you’re reading them as a series of questions). By answering them, you will be better able to describe your daily actions more clearly and recognize the overall effect, thus understanding the WHY for it all..

Only by fully understanding the WHY will your future progress be assured.

Just imagine that your trying to convince a space alien exactly what you mean, im talking about an alien that knows nothing, not the ones that seem to know it all (watch coneheads to see what i'm on about)

In short, it's all about the detail, so when making a cup of tea you might start by boiling the water……
Where does the water come from?
Why use a cup?
Why drink tea?
What's the desired outcome from drinking tea?
how does that effect you?
how does that help you in what you're doing?
Did you identify a better way to make a cup of tea?

The WHY for your actions are buried pretty deep in the relevant detail, only by digging will you find it and everything can become instinctive.


Late on Saturday, (at  20:42) I received a text message from Aine which stated,

'Just writing my daily bit now. Just not sure what to write about confidence as I didn't do anything today at all!!!'

An entire day of 'Doing nothing at all', ie, not being challenged in any way and not having to think about anything or do anything whatsoever

This leads to questions;

* If you spent all day doing nothing, why were you not able to answer the questions I've been asking for all week?
* Could you have used this time to do some personal research?
* Was it possible to discuss with friends or family their view of your progress?
* Could you plan your meals for the following week?
* Could you have critically read the news (or watched it)?
* How has the course effected your family life?
* How has the course effected anything?

But most importantly ?

* What are you looking to achieve from the final 2 weeks?
* What are you going to do to affect that?


Aine attended the Sunday morning Bootcamping workouts at Shaws Bridge, during her workout I again reminded her about answering the questions based on the daily feedback that i'm providing.

Aine informed me that she is finding self analysis to be very difficult when on her own, but when I explain it again she 'gets it', Aine also informed me that she had completed feedback for the Nutrition and Fitness elements for Saturday, unfortunately this has not been sent to me, event though I clarified that I do want this feedback.

This morning Aine commented that she lacked energy during the workout, she went on to inform me that she enjoyed undisturbed sleep and felt refreshed, however, Aine only ate a banana before her 10am workout.

We have identified as absolute fact that soft fruit is not appropriate for Aine on it's own, Aine needs something more substantial, ie, adding half a dozen almonds with soft fruit for example, this slows down the sugar rush, adds protein, fibre and essential fatty acids.

This is something that Aine has personally reported back on, during the course of this week, along with her found solution.
I asked Aine why she disregarded her own findings and advice given over her preceding ten weeks of personal coaching, In short, this came down to a combination of forgetting to follow her own findings, and time.

During Aines 10am workout, she repeated the old 'I Can't' mantra, it's this specific issue that the current exercise of daily feedback is designed to negate, a daily exercise that needs to be completed as previous described on numerous occasions.

(this blog is not exhaustive of Aines coaching, this is merely a very brief insight)

Only by understanding the 'Can' and applying the evidence of successes can Aine maintain her progress and actually believe that she can... for life !

Last week I identified that all is won or lost at this stage.

Winning is saying 'I can', 'I am', 'I'm doing...'
Losing is saying 'I Can't', 'I might', 'I plan to...'

As of 20:41 today, no responses to any of my questions on Anies daily feedback has been received.
As of 20:41 today, no daily feedback has been received for Saturday
As of 20:41 today, no  daily feedback has been received for Sunday (today)

With only 12 days remaining (from the original 84 days on course, plus pre course reading, plus 7 days for holiday) there is very little time remaining, as such, Aines actions in the coming week need to be much more proactive and considered to end this experience with a full understanding of herself.

* Providing daily feedback in a timely manner
* Responding to all questions posed

End of week 10

Week 11Monday 1st December 2014

This is a critical time for this course, I have stated here that this is where all is lost or gained and that only Aine can make that choice... as it is a choice.

Here are my thoughts on where I feel we're currently at and once again, the choice that Aine needs to make and then for Aine to act decisively on that choice.

This course has run for ten weeks, the pre course selection took a week, during which time;  reading up on the requirements and having an understanding of the principles was essential, as was reading my book (buy it here) ...
During the course Aine has been asked to read my book, she finally claimed to have read it by about week 5, . 
Aine was chosen for the free 12 week life coaching plan as she stated  that this course, while being great for her, would also have a great knock on effect for her family, however, up to now, there has been very little insight into how this course has made such an impact, if at all.

The entire course has been leading to the point of self actualisation where she can understand where the new found confidence stems from, so this can be repeated on the basis of understanding the WHY and the HOW...

At all stages, the principle of what you do effects what you eat effects what you think, has been repeated over and over again....

The first 4 weeks was spent determining the baselines, gaining a fully rounded picture of where Aine was at that time compared to where Aine wanted to be... This was achieved through gathering evidence, so all future decisions would be made on such evidence and not assumption (understanding the problem then understanding the solution and vice versa).

As such, Aine responded well to the exercise element, then eventually grasped the importance of optimal nutrition (without denial)....Aine made the firm connection that what you eat effects what you do, more so, we optimised Aines diet based on what she already enjoys, so there's no waggon to fall off.

While that was going on, Aine was also in receipt of regular coaching which was based on belief, ie, what you believe is what you achieve (go back to the terrier and rat example, ie, which do you feed?... read some materials on the 'Laws of Attraction').....

Overall,  Aine gained a fully functioning real world and practical, first hand understanding of the working principles of the course, ie,

* What you eat effects what you achieve and then believe
* What you believe effects what you achieve and what you eat
* What you achieve effects what you eat and believe

During the first 8 weeks, Aine has made significant improvements to fitness, confidence and outward appearance, ie, she looks happier, there's a 'glow', a 'sparkle', etc,  she has taken on a whole new personality in contrast to her start point.

In terms of providing feedback, the first 8 weeks were mostly passive, ie, I only required feedback on Sundays.

The final 4 weeks are much more demanding for Aine, i'm not sure if she does not understand the value of the overall 12 week course, or whether she was only ever interested in the fitness elements, or whether she she is no longer interested in making further progress, as the evidence currently suggests the latter, and as everyone will know by now, I only ever rely on evidence, not assumption.

Over the last two weeks in particular, notwithstanding the challenges of ;

* Having stated that she doesn't really want to provide the feedback (Wednesday 26th Nov)
* The untimely nature of when feedback is eventually provided (very late in the evening)
* The non specific nature of daily feedback (think back to WHY you applied)
* The point blank refusal to answer the questions that I pose to ALL feedback

* The fact that so far, 98% of all feedback received does not mention the very reasons that Aine wanted to do the course in the first place. (partner, baby, family)

I continue to hold out hope that Aine will grasp the opportunity offered. 
My aim for this course was (for no fee) to help someone who was willing to put in the work required, when required for the result required (all energy is a trade)
I genuinely wanted (and want) to help this person experience enhancement to life, for life.

BUT, here is the choice that Aine must make from today;

be Proactively IN the programme 100%  

be OUT of the programme 100%

Week 11 feedback by Mark


Today has been an interesting day in terms of interaction with Aine, my view is that Aine needs to think more about what this course means to her and trying to empart a greater sense of urgency, this is evident in the introduction to week 11 (top), plus within an email I sent to Aine ;

For those who have just started reading this ongoing report, you might want to look at the areas of achievement as well as those areas which require more focus, due to the solution focussed nature of this course, success needs no solution, the challenges do, so i set out to highlight those factors which are of concern to me regarding the resolution of said challenges and to determine the best way ahead.

Email from me to Aine Monday 1st December @ 15:45
(to raise some concerns)

Hi Aine

Thanks for sending your weekend feedback, I have provided questions to your feedback within the blog, in addition, I have aired my views of where we’re at and the challenge that you face in this final 12 days .

I’m concerned that the feedback for Saturday was emailed at 23:15 on Sunday evening when this should have been sent on Saturday, even though you stated that you did nothing on Saturday.
I’m concerned that Sundays feedback was emailed at 23:15 after I’ve asked for it in a timely manner
I’m concerned that you haven’t responded to any of the questions I’ve been raising in response to your feedback
I’m concerned that old habits are creeping in, as well as your vocalising of the ‘I can’t’ reflex

The whole reason for the feedback is to re-enforce the ‘I can’ and more importantly, to understand WHY you can, so you can repeat that at will.

I appreciate that you’re busy with family and work commitments, however, you entered the program stating your preparedness to fully commit to the 12 weeks, I’m therefor concerned that you’re clearly somewhat less committed to your progress at this key stage.

Take this evening to figure out exactly what you set out to achieve and where you’re currently at in relation to that goal, then decide on the course of action that you feel is most appropriate for you.

You have made notable and positive differences so far, that is plain to see, it’s down to you to maintain that progress and make the choices which facilitate that.
The tough aspect of this course is that the main changes are in self belief, this can’t be measured, photographed, seen or heard by others, it has no reflection or external voice or anything else that has a sensory reaction, as such, it’s much more difficult to quantify where progress is made by others, and in general, people don’t care about what can’t be seen or heard…
The thing is, you do see and hear it every day, your self-belief and your understanding of how to maintain that is absolutely critical for future unsupervised progress.

When providing you feedback, remember that ;

* fitness does not mean the classes you attended but all tasks requiring physical exertion, ie, taking a dog for a walk, jump starting a car, moving heavy furniture, going for a long walk, your physical endurance at work, etc.
Fitness is also a prime driver in what you choose to eat and how you feel (self belief).

* Nutrition does not just mean you were hungry, you ate, you were full… that’s a known effect from eating, explain how better nutrition helped you today, use your journal to help as each day you’re identifying improvements
Nutrition also drives your self belief and your ability for physical exertion.

* Confidence (self-belief) is the prime driver of the motivation to exercise and it also drives the food choices you make. In this section you can cite a limitless range of examples, from apathy to empathy to challenging behaviour to taking a new perspective, to helping others, to how you react to stressful situation, to family and relationship challenges etc…

Given that the fitness aspect is so far ahead of the nutrition and coaching aspects, this week we will be focussing on those two elements in lieu of Personal Training.

Remember to read the blog, my concerns have been iterated on there, along with feedback and questions to your feedback.

See you tomorrow at Bootcamping


In response, Aine sent the following.

Email from Aine to me, Monday 1st December @ 16:07

Hi Mark,

Both emails were sent at the same time as when I went home on Sunday after bootcamp, after i had already explained to you that I was struggling with the confidence section on Saturdays post, My daughter was very sick and I had to deal with that. This is why yesterdays post was done late also. I know that you need to get this onto the blog but I have to deal with my family first in that situation.

Saying that you think I need to think about what course of action i want to take is a little unfair I think as I feel I have given as much as I can into this course. The only bit I have struggled with in any way is doing the blog as it is not something I like to do, nor do I fully understand what I am supposed to be writing sometimes as things that you say I could write about either do not happen to me or I do not feel that they have challenged me in any way. Other than this aspect that I have been doing for the past 2 weeks I have been giving 100%.
The only 'i can't' I have said was on Sunday when I had already said that I was very tired, other than this I have been very positive and definitely feel that my attitude towards this has changed massivly and have been trying every new thing we have been doing.

I know exactly what I want to achieve and know the course of action I want to take in terms of this, I am just struggling with writing the blog, as it is not something I have done before but have been trying my best. I know you have explained what I need to be writing about but throughout my day I am struggling to get a scenario that I can write about.

I undersatnd that this is the most important stage of the course and will keep trying my best ubtil the end as that us all I can do.
Will see you in the morning.

This email raised more questions than it answered, so attempts were made to resolve them

Your email leads to more questions

* I appreciate that you're struggling, this is why I ask questions after daily reports, how do you view the intention of the questions and why?
* If you returned answers to the questions, do you think that over time, and with consistent effort, your daily reporting would become more intuitive? Explain your response.
(A bit like when you found running to be really challenging, but with effort you made impressive advances in your running ability)

* The entire course is about thinking about actions, explain the ways in which is it unfair to remind you of this?
* Is it possible that you're overthinking what your daily reporting should include?
(considering you took for granted your positive actions with your sick baby)
* In what way specifically has your attitude changed?
* What was your attitude and what is it now? (start and current point)?

* You say you know what you want to achieve, what is it you want to achieve?
* You say you know the course of action to take, what is that course of action?
* When you say you're trying your best with the blog (reports), other than this weekend (due to your very sick child) what specifically is hindering you from answering any of the questions i've been asking all week?
* What can you do to overcome that barrier to answering the questions?
* When can you put into action your solution so you can answer the questions?

* I had no idea that your daughter was poorly over the weekend, there has been absolutely no indication of this in the feedback provided over the weekend, including email, text, phone or in person. The only text you sent me on Saturday was to tell me that you have done nothing all day and consequently could not think of an example of anything surrounding confidence (or actions thereof), this is documented in this report verbatum.

* During your attendance at the group workout on Sunday morning, there was absolutely no mention or suggestion of such a highly significant occurrence (either before, during or after). This type of event (poorly baby) is an absolute prime factor when considering mindset, energy levels and choices of food with subsequent energy levels.
I know first hand that looking after a poorly baby can be an incredibly anxious time, as such i'm terribly sorry to hear that your baby is very sick.

As this coaching course is designed to help you maintain a positive frame of mind in the most challenging of situations, baby being poorly forms a perfect example within your report, more so as it indicatesyour personal (real life) interactions specifically;

** what is your coping mechanism in these situations ? (what helps you through)
** how do you communicate with people at such a time?(partner / family / friends etc)
** how does it effect your thought process specifically at this time?
** How does it effect your nutrition choices specifically at this time?
** How does it effect your energy specifically at this time?
** How did this effect anxiety levels at this time?
** Would you like to be able to cope better during these situations?

As we begin week 11 (of 12) Aine has unfortunately decided to stop her coaching. She informed me of this via e-mail on Monday 1st December 2014 @ 21:10 

Hi Mark,
I have just had a read of the blog and feel that at this point I no longer will be continuing with the course. I feel alot of what you have said is unfair as you do not seem to appreciate the amount of work I have tried to put in at home, in terms of doing those write ups.

Not continuing is not a reflection on myself as I was willing to put in the work for the small remaining time but I feel like the work I put in is being completely over looked.

I did not once say that I did not really want to do the feedback,  what I said was I did not enjoy doing it and I was struggling with what was expected.

I could say a lot more about some of the things mentioned in the blog but think I will just leave it there and hope you understand.


My public response

I thank her for all the efforts that she did put in, (as recorded throughout this blog)
The bargain made before this experience started was that everything would be public, the good, the bad and the rest,, as such, everything involved in this course has been blogged meticulously as the 12 weeks unfolded,  all feedback from Aine has been published raw, initially I did edit Aines spelling errors (and highlighted said edits) for ease of reading, however, I decided to stop doing that as I felt it was a disincentive for Aine to proof read prior to sending her feedback.

* The amount of work involved in providing this course has been demonstrably significant, ending this on an email is the single least respectful gesture i've personally received in such a long time that I honestly can't recall a greater lack of appreciation. (personally), this is disappointing.
* Everything reported in this blog, which is a permanent record, is true, any claim to the contrary is quite simply disingenuous.
* Claiming that I have overlooked Aines efforts is patently untrue, if you read through this blog, as well as comments on facebook, twitter, google and youtube, you will discover that I've been extremely supportive throughout.

I wish Aine luck with her future career path and with her family, I hope she puts talk in action and completes her degree, I hope she maintains her new found fitness, continues with her nutrition and avoids 'diet plans' as she now knows how her body works, I hope she continues to build on her heightened confidence levels and seeks out the WHY and HOW, I hope she continues her personal development, in addition, I hope that Aine can eventually take an objective look at everything reported here and act on the feedback i've offered,  identifies lessons that will carry her forwards and perhaps (ultimately) views this whole experience as a positive.

But, in the immediate, I wish Aine luck and health and wish her sick baby a speedy recovery.

End of the course

The following report is updated every 4 weeks, the graphs and tables make it easy to monitor / follow the progress being made

By; Mark McIntyre
PositivelyConfident Belfast Helathier Lifestyle Coaching
1onOne Personal Training Northern Ireland
Belfast Bootcamping outdoor group fitness

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