Episode 163: How to Train Your Mind, Nervous System, and Intuition with Natalie NewhartApr 29, 2022
So the longer like, as soon as you make that decision of, hey, you know what I'm going to let go, I'm just going to be here. I'm not going to worry about anything I got to do later. What I did earlier, I'm not going to think about this, that or the other. I'm just gonna be here with my breath. When you fully commit to that, that's when you feel it. That's when you change. It's an instant, instantaneous. You don't have to wait for shit like it happens then.
Today's episode is with Natalie Newhart. Natalie is a nutrition and performance coach, a former professional athlete and the founder of fit addicted nutrition. After a health scare ended her athletic and physique career, Natalie took on a whole new approach to diet and fitness. She experienced firsthand how the stress of obsessing over food and working harder in the gym led to hyperthyroid adrenal fatigue, stress induced menopause, diabetes and a 20 pound weight gain in two months. So in this episode, we're diving deep into why so many people, especially women, can be doing everything right, eating well working out, sleeping, tracking their food, paying attention to their movement, you know all the things, but still not seeing the changes they want in their body composition. We talked about the power of your mindset and how that has a huge impact on keeping you in a stressed anxiety driven state. So this was a really fun conversation with Natalie, and I'm excited for you to hear it because I know that you're going to learn a lot and take away a lot of tools and techniques that she talks about in her practice. Let's get into it.
Welcome back to Metflex and Chill. This is your host Rachel Gregory, and I'm here with Natalie Newhart. Natalie, what's up? How are you? I'm doing great, how are you? I'm good, I'm excited to have you here. We're gonna be talking all things mindset today and probably go down some rabbit holes of some different things. We were talking a little bit offline, how we have some similar backgrounds in the sense of, you know, doing a lot and feeling like we always kind of have to go and not realizing that there is a lot of merit in the, you know, the ability to kind of take a step back and bring that stress down and, and really focus on that side of things. And that being able to get you to your goals, especially when it comes to different mindset practices and things like that. So I definitely want to dive into all of that. And before we do that, do you want to give our listeners or viewers just a background? Tell us your story, who you are, how you got to where you are today?
Yeah. So I'll try to keep it short. I tend to ramble. And if, if I do just, you know, interrupted the fine. So basically, my journey started foof man, geez, I can't believe it's already been like, I don't know, 1213 years ago. But I, I got involved with CrossFit. And as soon as I, you know, started CrossFit, I wanted to take it all the way. So I want to go to the CrossFit Games. And so I started to, you know, train like, like, across the Games athlete, you know, I, I opened up my own gym, and I worked out all day long. And ended up you know, so I developed like that kind of training mentality. And then I went to the CrossFit Games in 2013. After that, I ended up tried making it back, it didn't make it. And I was realizing that like I just, I needed to switch paths. And so I got into bodybuilding. And that's where I really learned a lot about like, the aesthetic side of things. Right. So CrossFit was all about, like, physical performance, and that's when, you know, I've always kind of been super competitive, like, go go go, just from like, the, the way that I was brought up. But then I learned like all the, you know, kind of the intricacies of like, How do I look a certain way, how do I make a really lean body and I picked up some really bad eating disorders from bodybuilding. Like, real bad, like just just out of control. And then I went back into CrossFit, I coupled up my, my CrossFit training style with a bodybuilding diet, like 800 calories a day training five, six hours a day. So I thought it was superhuman, you know, I was just, you know, like, everybody told me, No, you can't, like you gotta rest and, you know, you got to, you know, just take care of the body. And I was like, Nah, I'm fine. Like, I'm an athlete, like, I got this, you know. And anyways, so what that ended up in is I ended up gaining 20 pounds in two months, like my body just started, it just broke down like that, like over the course of two months, I gained 20 pounds, became diabetic hypothyroid adrenal fatigue, and then like, stress induced menopause, right. And the coaches that I was working with, like just general nutrition coaches, they didn't know really, like they were just like, Yeah, you know, you're stressed. You gotta like stress. less. And, like so I did some things, right. So I stopped working out so hard and I started to, you know, walk more and take some baths and, and stuff like that. But then I just like all that energy that I wasn't putting into the gym I put into my business, I was like, alright, well, if I'm going to like not be at the gym, I'm just going to, I'm going to, you know, I'm going to crush my business, you know. And the same thing happened is I gained weight again, I got puffy, like my eyes, like, I would get so tired in the middle of the day that I felt like I'd fall asleep. Everything just basically came back, you know. And I realized, well, like, you know, I'm doing all the things you're supposed to be doing. But it just happened again. And so I realized that the stress was coming from internally, like my mental stress. And so I ended up working with, like, my trainer, my, sort of, you can call him a coach, but he's really like, like a guru slash master on you know, psychology, neurology, just like the inner patterns, right, the way my, my my behavior patterns, the way that I'm always so go, go go so driven, you know, always crossing things off making to do lists, and, you know, the feeling like, I'm never doing enough. And it wasn't until I started to look at that and retrain that, did I create, not only self control with food, but my body leaned out, all my health came back. And ever since I've been training that, yeah, so it was a mindset, you know, an internal issue, not not food or physical stress?
Yeah, I feel like that's super powerful in the sense that a lot of people just don't really, I mean, it took me and I'm still not there yet. But I'm, you know, working on that. Something that I've been really working on the last few years, had a similar kind of experience with an injury that I got from CrossFit, which basically just forced me to just stop altogether. And so then I put my focus into my business as well. So very similar story. But, yeah, it's just crazy. Because we don't realize that like, everything starts in the mind, right, everything that you're doing starts in the mind, and that you know, flows through everything else, like what you think is your will dictate your actions, what you're, you know, doing every single day in terms of like, how you start your day, that's going to dictate, you know, how the rest of the day goes, all the rest week goes, and, and all of that. So I definitely want to dive into some of the things that you've kind of realized, I guess, over this kind of healing period, within certain practices that you implement with, you know, mindset practices, or just some things that you want to dive into, that have really helped you kind of go from that, you know, gogogo mentality. So like, alright, let's, let's chill for a sec, and figure out what, what's actually going to propel me forward and get get this stress reduction down and really, you know, feed into the other parts of my lifestyle. So, are there any like, you know, practices or anything that you want to talk to in that regard?
Oh, god, yeah. So much information. I could talk forever. So far. Well, the first thing is that Okay, so first off, like, the one thing that I wanted was, yes, of course, I wanted to lean body, but I also had a very disrupted eating, like eating disorder. Like I was just always obsessed with food, right? Always thinking about food, always thinking about when should I eat? Is that too much is that too little? Like, like, you know, counting down the macros making sure thing fits like, like, I was so obsessed. The mind was, I trained my mind be so obsessive in that way from all the years of dieting and tracking macros as an athlete, right? And so the one thing that I really wanted was peace with food. Okay. So part of that sort of, like, of my stress was this constant inner chatter, this back and forth of around food, like, am I eating too much? Should I eat that? What am I gonna eat that like, just, you know, that was that was mental stress. And so the, the thing that I really wanted more than anything, is I got clear about what I wanted more than anything. And that was peace with food. Like, I wanted to just have some peace of my mind where I didn't have to frickin obsess over the stupid shit. Sorry, I don't know, if you can know you're good, but we can.
Okay. It's just taking so much of my brain power. And I just like, like, I couldn't I yeah, I just couldn't live, you know, I couldn't even hold a conversation without thinking about like my next workout or my next meal. And so as a result, like that led me to eating because I didn't have very good self control with food because of the bodybuilding stuff. And so then I found myself like eating and then using the gym to, you know, work it off and like, I was stuck in that cycle. And every single day was like that, and I couldn't I was exhausted. There was a time there was a point where I'm just like, I'm freaking done with this and I and all I wanted was just peace with food and freedom in the gym like where I You just go work out not because I had to, but because I wanted to. And this is important because I got clear about what I wanted. Okay, because that pattern of that obsessiveness around food in the gym was the thing that's keeping was keeping me from the body I wanted, right? Like, you know, for women that are older, like over 35, I like to say that, hey, a body that is a female body that is stressed is a body that doesn't burn fat. It's a body that wants to store fat. And so if I wanted to, but have the lean body, I actually like part of that was to figure out how to create peace with food. Right? So that one I took the stress off and to, like I wasn't, it's just not what I wanted. I just wanted to live instead of like always focusing on this stuff. So I got clear about what I want. And that's like, the first number like step one with, if you're, if you if you want to change something about your body, or your patterns, your habits, whatever, you have to be crystal clear about what it is that you do want. And I don't mean like a physical thing. Like, like, Yeah, that's great, like a bot, like seeing the body that you want, but what's the experience that you want to know around food and the gym and with life? Like what it what is the way that you want to wake up and go through your day? What would that look like? Okay, because so many people, they're like, Oh, I just, you know, I wish I had peace with food. And you know, I just wish I didn't think about it all the time. But then they just go do diets. And so those two don't really mesh, you know, creates more anxiety. And so you got to get clear, like, oh, like, you know, if I want this lean body, but I also want to like be able to go for hikes and not worry about the workout that I'm not getting in, I want to be able to connect with my, you know, people on a deeper level, instead of worrying about the food that I ate earlier, my next meal, I want to be able to trust myself with food around any food, I wanna be able to leave food on my plate, like, get clear about the relationship that you want, you know, with food in the gym and the life you want, right? Because then that will dictate. Okay, that's where you that's where you want to go. All right, let's start to do the work, right? This is where you are, okay? I'm obsessing over food, right? And I'm and I'm attached to my diet plan or are attached to tracking macros, okay? It's no big deal. Like, that's just where I am. No judgment, there's not good or bad. But that will never create the sense of freedom with food, right? The obsession and constantly analyzing, will never ever create what you want. And that's the thing to get clear about. So number one, you got to know what you want, right? And then number two, you got to know where you are, Hey, what are my patterns right now? And what patterns will do I do I want to keep that are good for me. Like maybe it's like, Hey, I fricken. I've got a great morning routine, and I get my workout in and you know, I'm good. Do my workout and motivated myself cool. Let's just probably keep that one, right. But then there's some other patterns that aren't serving you like the constant think overthinking of food, or not being able to take a rest day, like that's, those are the ones that we got to change. Right. So we see where we want to go, we see where we are. And then in the middle are the is the training, it's the skills, that's where we train our nervous system, it's where we train our mind. Right? So you know, like, yeah, it's, it's where we, we have to train our, with the train our nervous system to be able to relax, you know, you said that, yes, actions are driven from the way that we're thinking in that moment. But even a step further than that, is those thoughts that you're thinking the way that your mind is thinking is a result of the emotion that you're feeling in that moment? And those emotions that we feel in that moment? Are the thing that drives the mind to? To worry to doubt, right? And that's something that has been imprinted in our nervous system for the lat for the art from our past history, right? So we have to learn how to retrain the patterns emotionally. And also the thoughts in our mind mentally in order to bridge the
gap. Yeah, I mean, it makes so much sense. Just like a lot of things, it's easier said than done, right? So you have what are ya? What are like, where would you start? Like, if you're like, Okay, I understand this, I need to figure out what I want with my lifestyle and kind of starting with step one, like, what, what am I aspiring for? Like, what do I see? Like you said, What do I want to feel every time I wake up in the morning and like, how do I want my day to be how do I want my week to look all of that while still, you know, getting closer to our goals, right? So when you say train your nervous system, like what, what's like the first step that someone could take if they want to take like something practical way to kind of get on that path? Mm hmm.
So just to kind of create some context here, right? Most people Pull, from the moment that they wake up to the moment they go to bed, especially women, because we tend to be the more anxious type, right? Yeah, are going, going going right. And they like, soon as they wake up, they're there, their nervous system is in a fight or flight state. Alright, let's check in the phone, they get up, they take a shower as they're, they're like listening to music and they're getting the kids ready. And then, you know, that goes on all day long. And so most people are living in this perpetual state of like a low grade state of stress, low grade state of anxiety, right. And because they've trained it so much, it's become their norm, the switch has been gotten stuck on, and people don't know how to relax, or they know how to relax, but they can't actually get themselves to do it. Because the biggest threat to go go go is calm down. Like that's the mind. You know, the mind doesn't like change, I was just thinking I was I posted something in my story today, my IG story, I was like, you know, changes like wearing high waisted pants for the first time. I don't know about you, but like, when I first wore him, I was like, this shit is awkward. Like, it's all the way pulled up past my belly button. And it's like, feels uncomfortable and weird and wrong. And I was thinking like, it's the same thing, you know. So getting ourselves to slow down and sit still, it's kind of feel awkward, wrong. And uncomfortable. Okay, and but that is the training that needs to start to happen, right in order for you to start seeing results from your diet and exercise, but also know a better quality of life. Okay, so how do we do that for a variety of ways, but the first way is going to be just the four sided breath. Like, honestly, I started with one breath a day, like in the morning, when I wake up, I just started with doing one breath. And then I, you know, obviously trained much more than that. But a four sided breath is where you inhale fully. You pause and hold at the top, and then you exhale fully. And you pause and hold at the bottom. And it takes practice, okay, because most people when they breathe, they're going to breathe through the chest. And they're also going to like try to strain because they really think that they've got to get like the maximum amount of air is it's not that, you know, it's a full breath. But it's relaxed, right, and you want to focus on breathing through your belly. So the whole body, the nervous system, you're teaching, training, conditioning, just like the gym, you're conditioning, the nervous system, to turn off to relax, okay, and the better you get at it, you know, in the beginning, it's going to be like it probably, you're going to do maybe, you know, five minutes, and you may not even feel all that different, you know, but eventually, the better that you get with it, the more reps you do, the more practice you do, the more you're going to be, the more you're going to understand what it's like to relax, you're, the more you're going to give yourself permission to relax. And as a result that that that nervous system takes from being gone all the time being stuck on to now you can turn it off. And when you get good at that you can live in that state where the nervous system isn't always in that wired go go go fight or flight state. Which, you know, I understand in the beginning, it's it's scary because a lot of women kind of like that state, right? Yeah. Yeah, so but it's not serving your body goals. And but not only that, like you can still get shit. I'm not saying be lazy. I'm saying just do it in a way where you're not so tense, you're not so anxious. You can still get stuff done, but you can have fun with it. You can be relaxed about it, you can be calm, you can be grateful you can be joyful.
I love that. I think you mentioned something about you just said it about, you know how we we like the feeling of being kind of over stimulated stimulated all the time. And I was just thinking so like, yesterday or the day before I posted a video I'm not really on Tik Tok, but I posted originally posted a video about when I was talking about comparing CrossFit style training to like bodybuilding style training and kind of the issues that I had for myself. And I see with a lot of clients when they're doing these high intensity, you know, classes like CrossFit, orange theory. So we're talking about that a little bit. And in the comments of that a lot of people were just mentioning and they were I will say there are a lot of women just talking about like, but I love the feeling. I love the feeling of you know, being dead on the floor after the workout. It's just like those endorphins are running. I don't know, you know how to get away from that because I like that stimulation. And so you just kind of talked to that how it's something that we kind of crave or look to crave. And there was another another mention of you know, I was talking about actually within bodybuilding, like the fact that you know, sweating doesn't equal a great workout like it's, it's not a just because you're sweating a ton and you're out of breath doesn't mean that you like, you have to do that to have a good workout, right? Especially when it comes to like lifting weights and stuff. And people are like, Well, I love sweating. I love the feeling. And so I think it's one of those things like you said, like we're trained to, we've trained ourselves to want that. Kind of like a little bit of pain, right? Because we know that it's, it feels good, right? Sorry. were you gonna say something?
I can always say something.
Yeah, no, no, I was just gonna say like it what you said kind of just resonated that. So with that breath? So I'm just curious. Like, how? Because it's something that seems so simple, right? But it's like, how do we actually, like, put that into practice? And like, how long I guess for you, like, how long did it take you to really start to kind of feel like that was making a difference in your life? Like, was it just getting into the daily practice of doing it for, you know, a month or two? Like, where did that? How did it kind of evolve for you?
Yeah. So probably, you know, the beginning, like, it's really uncomfortable. You know, like, I, when I was working with my coach, I was supposed to do 20 minutes a day, you know, and I was like, Yeah, right. I'm not gonna do that. Like, I could barely get five in. Are you kidding me? Yeah. So and I was doing it like, maybe three times a week. So, um, you know, it's just like anything, like in the beginning, it's just like, you really got to just it's discipline, right? Because you got to know what you want and why you want it? And I would say, you know, it would like it. I mean, honestly, like, it takes as long as you want. That's the thing. Because I have clients, where they just get it quick, because they let go quicker. Right? Me I was like cleaning. I was like, like, you know, I was trying to force it so much. I was I was just, I was really clinging to that just numb, you know, always Am I doing it right. And, you know, Oh, that wasn't a good breath. That was a good like, it's just like, I was constantly judging and worrying. And I didn't let myself be fully immersed in the breath. And so the longer like, as soon as you make that decision of, hey, you know what, I'm going to let go, I'm just going to be here, I'm not going to worry about anything I got to do later, what I did earlier, I'm not going to think about this, that or the other, I'm just gonna be here with my breath. When you fully commit to that, that's when you feel it, that's when you change. It's an instant, instantaneous. You don't have to wait for shit. Like, it happens, then, you know, but the, the hard part is not the hard part. It's just, it's different for everybody. Some people really just like they, they relax into it immediately. To me, it probably it probably took me. I mean, it's still it's an always progression, but it probably took me to to really start like being okay with it maybe a month or two. I mean, a month or so, you know, before I started to like, maybe kind of enjoy it, you know? Yeah, so
yeah. And so I guess to piggyback off that, I kind of want to dive in because I don't want to forget about asking this because I know a lot of people struggle with this. Continuously as, as do I kind of going back to like the food obsession and the stress around food. And always thinking about it, how, like, are there specific, you know, practices or tactics within that, that you were able to kind of implement? And kind of, like, did you have this, like, epiphany that was like, Alright, I'm not obsessed anymore. I'm not thinking about food, I'm not obsessed with like tracking every single macro and things like that, because I you know, I have a lot of I work with a lot of clients to where I do use macros, you know, as a gauge, right to have the data there and all that stuff, but eventually, you know, getting away from that, like, if you don't have like, if you've gotten to your goal, and you're looking to just kind of live more intuitively as as we call it. That process is is different for everyone, but it's a hard process to get there. So I'm just wondering, like within the the kind of the food focus, you know, side of things, are there specifics within that that you like, can give to some of our listeners, like hey, I did like a few of these things and they really helped me to move towards that obviously the breath and you know, relaxing the nervous system and all that is is probably part of it right? But are there like any other things that are like practical practices that you that you did and then you kind of got to this point where like, wow, like I really feel like this has made a difference.
Yeah, so first off, I just want to say that like, you know, I'm not against macros are not for macros, right? Like I'm in neither is good or bad, right or wrong. It's what is what is the what is it goes always goes back to vision. What is your vision? What is your experience that you want to know with? around food and your life? Right? And, and just making sure that you're aligned with that just like hey, like, it crossed, it's not good or bad. It's just is it taking you where you want to go? Is it getting you results? Like if it's not getting you results, then you know, I mean? You know, that's that's fine too, but don't say that you want This and then you're doing something that isn't gonna get you results, right? So just getting clear about, you know what it is you want and making sure that Hey, who do I need to become to to create that, right? And so for me, I wanted peace with food. And so I was like, Okay, there's a certain person I need to become, right? Obviously, I am not that. And as your, you said, an epiphany, I did have this one moment where I was walking on a trail. And, you know, I had been just kind of, you know, how we do it, like how we have, you know, when we're trying to change we like, we say, we want to change, but then we, like, don't really fully commit and like, we kind of like, we just bounced, we get, we're in like this gray zone, you know, and causally like, tomorrow, I'm going to start and then we like, we go back into the pattern again. And then tomorrow, I'm going to start and then we fall back into your pattern that day. So there was this moment. And when I was on the trail, I was just like, Man, I'm fucking done. I'm done with playing games, I'm done with lying to myself. I am going all in, like, and so I first I, I declared, like, what does that look like that I want to be, I painted a picture of the person, how she acts around food that like the way that I want to feel the person I want to beat the habits I want to embody around food around the gym, and the way I wanted my body to look. And then I went out and I studied people, I studied people that had what I wanted, right? So one of them was my boyfriend, because you know, during my whole entire time of like having these like eating disorders, of just not being able to control myself around food. Meanwhile, he would have a bag of cookies or something on his desk, like literally next to his computer, and he won't even touch them all week long. I'd be like, Are you freaking kidding me? Those things would be down. And I'd be thinking about them, you know, on my drive home, you know, and then like, white knuckling my way to like, not eat them if they were sitting right in front of me, you know? So I asked, you know, I studied my boyfriend, I was like, Dude, what goes through your mind, like, when you eat that Chipotle, and you just have like, a couple bites, and you don't eat the whole thing, what's going through your mind there, you know, because I want to, I gotta start thinking like that I want to start, I got to start being like that. And so he, you know, he told me some of the things that he you know, you know, the things that he thought about and how he didn't like having a full stomach. And I was like, oh, okay, like, that's interesting. That's new. Right. And then I studied other people that, you know, had what I wanted, like, just had a sense of like, joy, and, you know, love for the body and peace, you know, and because I knew that I had, those are the qualities that I had to train, I had to become more peaceful. Right, I be more centered, more grounded, so that I could control myself when I was around food that I had access to make a different decision, right to instead of just reacting every single time, you know, every single time I got stressed out or was impulsive, I had to be able to control that. So I needed a, I need to train centeredness. And so I standard I studied people who, you know, had what I wanted. And then I started to ingrain that, like, I started to become it, I started to be and train myself into the person that I needed to be to have that. Right. So that's the that's, I mean, in I have 52 tools, like I have a one year program, and every single week, there's a new tool on how to do that. Right? So because it's you have to take it step by step like you can't just it's it's it's it's a training and you need a system, you need a step by step process. Otherwise, our patterns are strong. And you'll just go back into what feels comfortable in that moment.
Yeah, yeah, that makes sense. Would you say? So with these the 52 tools that you have, obviously, the breath is one of those or multiple tools, multiple different types, I guess, are there any like other kind of ones that are kind of higher up on the spectrum that you tend to see make a big impact from the beginning, like if you could pick, like two other ones that you've seen with your clients that really tend to like, get things started?
Yeah, so I'd say like the biggest things that we train, so we go through four different phases. And within, like, we like we train the mind, we train the nervous system, we train the vision, and we train our higher self like intuition. And within each one of those programs, those 12 week programs, there's 12 tools, right? 12 weeks of tools, and always like the first four are all about awareness. Like where am I at? What am I feeling? What is the mind thinking? And we get we train that really well, really intensely, so that we because there's that split moment before you take that action that is creating the thing that you don't want so like for me, before I go for that food that that impulse of oh, I just want to taste. I need to have an awareness that I'm there. Because it's in that moment, that window of opportunity where I can see oh, I'm about to do that thing that keeps me where I am. And it's in that window, you got to be aware and say, No, thank you. Right. So you know, thank you to those that the what we see as an opportunity to have that food, right? Oh, that looks so good. It's gonna taste so good, what an opportunity. That sounds like so much fun. I really want to taste I want it now. Right? There's that window where I've got to be, Oh, there's the pattern, right? And I've got to be able to redirect it. So awareness is that is is one of the tools and we train for weeks of that, then we do about three weeks or so of breath, like, you know, for three to four weeks of just like, hey, there's there, you know, I'm aware that that patterns there, okay, I'm going to, I'm going to shift it going to use the breath. And then we do another four weeks of redirecting, hey, this is I'm going to focus on where I want to go, who do I need to be? What can I Why do I not need that right now? You know, what is my vision? And what action can I take right now to align with that what? You know, maybe I can, you know, ask myself, Hey, is the body even hungry? You know, or maybe in that moment, I just, I take a breath, and I go for a walk, or I focus on why I don't need that food or why it's okay for me to rest, like we redirect the mind so that we start to train ourselves into a person that feels in control around food that has that peace of mind. And also is able to take rest days without going into a full blown panic of am I going to be fat the next day? Right? Yeah. Yeah, so it same goes like when like, Hey, yo, I'm aware that my mind is obsessing over food right? Now I'm aware that my mind is thinking about food just in general. Okay, cool. I'm aware of that. I'm going to do the breath. And I'm going to focus on who I what I want to be like the outcome I want, I'm going to focus on, you know, having a wonderful relationship with my boyfriend or hiking in the woods and just feeling so connected to nature. I'm going to redirect my thought. Right? So those are two, like the three big macro tools, but we have we go really specific within that.
Yeah, yeah, I love the awareness piece. That is definitely, in my opinion, like, the the first step in terms of just like, being able to create that awareness and thinking about, okay, like, you know, the instant gratification versus like, the long term satisfaction and like, where do I want to be six months from now? Not where do I want to be like, in a week, right. And so kind of being creating that awareness is super important. I think, just for me, one of the things that because I went through a lot of, you know, food focus, it's kind of same as you and I still struggle with it. I think everybody does, like, it's one of those things, that's you're constantly, you constantly need to practice, like all the things that you've said, one of the things that really resonated with me, and I had kind of my own epiphany moment was, when I stopped kind of thinking in this, this scarcity mindset. And when I say that, I mean, you know, if I were to go to a party on the weekend, and there was like, you know, plate of cookies, or like, a candy jar or whatever, like taking a step back and be like, oh, like, oh my gosh, like I can, you know, this is my cheat day or my cheat meal. So I can, you know, consume all this stuff. But taking a step back and realizing that like, this is always going to be here, like I could literally stop this podcast right now and go to the corner store and get the same box of cookies, that's always going to be on that shelf, like there, it's always gonna be there, right? So that, for me helped a little bit just to realize that like, this kind of scarcity versus abundance mindset, where you kind of get away from that scarcity, thinking like, you can only have this in this period of time, because this is your quote, unquote, cheat meal, or cheat day, or whatever it is. But taking a step back and realizing like I can have that whatever I want. It's not going anywhere, it's always going to be here, food is always going to be around. And so that one thing, it's obviously not like a specific practice or anything like that. But that builds awareness for me. And so that helps me to continue to think about that, when I was in a situation like that. So that what you mentioned about awareness that that was one of the kind of like the lightbulb moments that I had.
Yeah. And so with that. So you can chain train, retrain your mind, it's going to take a lot longer if you like, that's one of the things that we would do in like, when we're training the mind in that in, you know, the train the mind phase, is, you know, redirect the focus, like, hey, like, why is there's food, there's gonna be food here later, there's plenty to go around, right? But that will take you much longer to make that switch to create that sense of peace with food. Just because everything starts it's a neurological event first, right? So when we were younger, you know, Mom and Dad took us out to get ice cream and we tied joy and you know, a sense of reward to food and fun foods like that. Right? And so that got trained in our nervous system way back when and so when we're around those foods, that's what gets activated inside of us, which makes us drive the mind to think, oh my god, there it is, I want some how fun it would be to have that. And then that that, you know, gives you gives most people the impulse to want to eat that, right. So but so the thing is, is that, like, it got wired like that. And so if you want to not feel such an So, such a strong impulse, from food, or, you know, with food like that is you got to rewire that nervous system, so that it's more like food becomes something like you why your gratitude with it, maybe appreciation or love, you know, as opposed to seeing it as like a reward and joy and excitement. And how we do that is, again, like I said, you can train your emotions, you can train your nervous system, just like, just like you've trained joy with food, and you know, reward, just like you've trained anxiety by feeling it over and over, we get good at emotions by feeling them. And some of these emotions have been wired incorrectly, you know, to the point where it's driving our impulse for food, you know, so it's like, it's like, you turn on the light switch, and the sprinklers go off, it's like, they just got wired wrong, right? So if we want to feel at peace with food, or, you know, a sense of appreciation and control, like, we want to be able to train gratitude train appreciation for the body. And, and, and when we think about food, you know, you know what I mean? So by feeling it, yeah,
that makes sense. For sure, I do want to, so I want to switch gears a little bit in terms of like, from the food side of things to the workout side of things. And really speaking to kind of like the, you know, the CrossFit, high intensity workouts, those things where we're getting kind of that, that feeling those endorphins, and also kind of, like, for me, my biggest struggle, taking a step away from CrossFit was because I really enjoyed, like the family atmosphere, I enjoyed, you know, the competition side of things, obviously. And so for me, it was like, you know, I want to go to CrossFit, you know, five times a week, six times a week, because I enjoy being there. But, you know, obviously, I got to a point where it wasn't serving me anymore, and I wasn't, you know, getting the results that I wanted. And I was, you know, pushing myself more into that kind of the stress state, right, I had all these other stressors going on in my life. So my stress bucket was just like overflowing. And that was one of the things that I looked at as my outlet. And a lot of people look at like their workout, right? As their outlet. They're like, Oh, yeah, this is another stress, but like, it makes me feel good. So I look at it as a stress reliever. But when we're talking about things like high intensity training, and CrossFit and things like that, how do we like? Can we just talk a little bit about how that, you know, it feels good in the moment? And yes, it can be looked at as a, you know, a de stressor from from that side of things. But what are some of the issues that arise with just that constant physical stress that you're putting yourself under, especially for females who maybe they're maybe their main goal is they want to lose body fat, change their body composition? And they're like, Alright, I'm gonna go get a hard CrossFit workout in and then, you know, be in a calorie deficit and, you know, do all these things to to get to the result. But like, why is that such an issue? Like it from the exercise standpoint, in the high intensity side of things? Like what are some of the things that are really, you know, push pulling you back that you might not see now, but we're going to show up, you know, in six months from now, does that I know, that was a little bit of a confusing question.
I think you're asking what are the signs and symptoms of stress?
Yeah, and as it relates to more of those, like, people who are in, you know, working out high intensity training, and they, they love that as a huge part of their life, but how do they balance that? Right? How do they, you know, get the benefits from that, but then also get the benefits from, you know, managing that that stress level?
Yeah, yeah. Okay, so first off, again, cross, it's not good, it's not bad, right? It's just is it does it? Is it working for you? Is it you know, are you getting results off of it, and then it's up to you, like, you know, if you don't care about results, and go ahead and crush yourself, you know, but chances are, you will suffer from, you know, the body's going to get beat up and start, you know, deteriorating. And I actually just did a podcast on this, like, how, you know, the way that we train needs to evolve as we get older, in our 20s it's all about CrossFit. Right? It's all about like jumping, sprinting, lifting, like going hard, like, we want to do that. Then as we get into our 30s, it's, you know, instead of that being kind of, like, you know, a 9010 90% of time, we're doing CrossFit and 10% we're resting in our 20s Now, it's kind of like us in their 30s It's like, 7030 70% of the time, maybe we're and I can't even do it like that much, but maybe 70% 60 to 70% of time, we're going hard and you know, 30 40% we're doing more Strength Training resting, right. And in our 40s, it's more like, oh, it's like, you know, maybe 5050 or 40 60%. And then our 50s It's like we can do less and less. And so the way that we train does, you know, if you want to create peak health and vitality in the body, which is different from just aesthetics, and differing from performance, it's, you know, peak health and vitality is like, I feel strong, I feel alive, I feel capable, I can run up this mountain, I look good, I feel good. But like, I mean, I look, you know, I look decent, maybe not like, you know, shredded like CrossFit or bodybuilding, right? It's just like, hey, I look and feel good, right? If that's, if that's your goal, that's the way that the training needs to evolve, okay? And how do you start to, you know, actually make that happen? Like, you have to start spending time with yourself. That's what I've noticed is you, you have to learn how to listen to your body. There's no plan, I don't care what plan you go on, there's no plan that's going to be designed specifically for you. And so in order for us to be able to develop a relationship with the body, we have to spend time with it, we got to frequently check in with it in the first thing in the morning, hey, where is the body at today? What does it need, and really, like, once you start to see like what a good body feels like, then you can start to, you know, change, like feel like, you know, align yourself with the right things to do that day, like this morning. I decided to rest I mean, it was kind of for some other reasons, but like, mainly because I was like, super anxious, and I just needed to feel centered and grounded. But a lot of times, like, I'll move the body, I'll warm it up. And then I'm just I asked myself, Hey, where's it at? What does it need to feel its best right now. And sometimes I'm beat up, I'm sore. And so then I'll do just a yellow day, which is like, I'll get in the gym, but I'm just not crushing myself. Other days, I feel great. I'm like, Yeah, I feel I feel Poppy. I feel like you know, energetic and vibrant. And in that on those days, I'll do a Green Day, which is where I train harder, and typically eat more, so eat more, train more. And then on the days where like, we actually have like a rating scale, right. So like, on a scale of one to 10, if you if the body feels like an eight to 10, it's a Green Day, right? Eat more, train more CrossFit stuff, stuff like that, if the body is like from a four to a seven, that is going to be a yellow day where hey, I'm going, I'm gonna move it, I'm going to train but I'm not going to crush you know, I'm not gonna go super hard, super intense. And then if the body's like a one, two or three, that's a red day. So the body feels beat up, tired, sluggish, achy, you know, like, just doesn't feel good. We eat less train less, we do a little bit of bodyweight movement, but we just mainly go for a walk, we do our breath work, we do a lot of energy, work, mindset work, stuff like that. So it starts by giving yourself permission to just ask, Hey, where's the body at right now. And I do use the term the body, because it helps you take a third person, like look from the outside in, as opposed to oh, but I really should do that. And like, what happens if I don't? And like, well, like, yeah, my body feels beat up. But, you know, I'm sure like, I'm sure I could just, I'm sure I'll feel better later. Like, once I get kind of warm up, you know, like, it's like, all that shit. You know, so we want to look at is like, hey, the bot like just like how you would treat like your, your, your pet or your kid, you know, like, you know, you're gonna, you want to provide the best for it. And so you're gonna just like, you know, check it out, like, detect it, like, what does it need, you know, or your plant, you know? Yeah. Yeah.
Yeah, I love that. I love how you kind of broke it down red, yellow, green. And it made me think of something that I had lost. So this is another question too, I guess. So last week, and I like actually recorded this for I have a membership group. And I was kind of thinking through this as I was walking back from the gym. So I like recorded myself talking and I was kind of had this, it was one of those days where I just like, was not feeling going like to work out. But it wasn't like a physical thing. It was more like a mental, right. And so, I was like, Alright, I'm just gonna, you know, put my shoes on and I'm going to just walk because I walked to the gym and about a half mile so I was like, I'm just gonna walk to the gym and I'm supposed to be doing lower body. So that was like one of the things to like, for me getting amped up to do lower body versus an upper body day for me. And for most people, it's a little bit more of a taxing mentally. So it was a lower body day and I was like, Oh man, like I it was it was last Friday. I was like, I just can't like I don't feel like this. I was pushing it off making every excuse in the world. And it got like midday and I was just like, alright, like, I know that if I don't at least just get up and try that I'm gonna have a crap rest of the day. Like I was planning to go out to dinner that night. I know that I'm going to kind of like, just not feel good, right? I'm not going to just feel good. So I was like, I'm just going to put my shoes on. I'm going to walk to the gym and when I get to the gym, I'm going to make it like a low intensity cardio day. I'm just going to get on the track. Melton walk, you know, for 30 minutes, whatever on an incline. So it's like, I'm just gonna, like switch my train around do that. So I got to the gym and I started walking and then I was like, okay, like, I look at my workout, I'm like, Alright, like, I'm just gonna, like do one Saturday, I'm gonna do the first exercise and just see how I feel, right? So like, go in, and I do it's like RDLs is my first exercise. I do one set, and I'm like, Okay, this, this feels pretty good. I'm just gonna, like, do these four sets. And then I'm gonna go back to the treadmill. And so I ended up doing the four sets the RDL. And I was like, Wow, I feel good. So I was like, I'm just gonna keep going. So I ended up doing the whole workout. And it was one of the best lower body sessions that I've had in, like, probably two months. Yeah. And so I came out of it. And I was like, ecstatic because I was like, I feel great. Now, like this might, the rest of my day is gonna be amazing. But it was, it was a mental shift that I needed to make. So I guess my question to you is, like, how do we decipher between like, like, obviously, feelings of soreness and like, yeah, like, I can't get up off my seat. And my quads are like, burning? Yeah, yeah, that's like physical soreness. But like, how do we distinguish between the mental maybe like, laziness or just like no motivation versus the physical? Like, can? Does that make sense? Okay,
such a great question. Yeah, that's a great question. So first off, notice that once you took the expectation off, and the pressure off, it was fun. Yeah. Right. And once you stopped focusing on how hard it was going to be, it became fun, because you didn't have this expectation of I have to do all these things. Oh, my God, like, I just don't feel it. Right. So the way that you were focused on that workout in that moment, like, on your way to the walk, or before, you know, before you started walking, you were focused on a, in a way that was creating such a burden, right? Like, it's gonna be like, Oh, you can I just need so much energy. And I just don't know, if I got the energy and Oh, my God, like, you know, as opposed to the way that you're going to feel afterwards, right. And you know, what a loving thing to do for the body is to challenge it. So that's the thing is, like, you know, people see my stuff, and they're kinda like, what you like, don't work hard. I'm like, No, I frickin work hard. I just love working hard. I do it from a place of love, not from a place of fear. Not because I have to, but because it's what an opportunity, what a loving thing to do for the bodies to make it strong and capable. Right. And on those days, like, when I noticed that I'm feeling like when the mind right, you got to separate the mind from the heart, okay? Or the mind from the body, basically, the mind will focus on how hard it is what you know, like, how many reps I got to do, and like, you know how heavy it is, and it creates this and also like how, yeah, like this expectation of how hard I have to go and how much I have to lift. And it creates this pressure and this burden that just says, right, and as opposed to focusing on, you know, man, like, what a loving thing to do for the body is to challenge it with this weight. And also like, what is like, what I'm going to create, like, how good am I going to feel today, but also like the body what an opportunity is to build the body into a magnificent, you know, thing that that that allows me to live the life I want, where I can just run up a mountain or I can do this race or I can, you know, pick up my dirt bike or whatever, you know, like, so we want to be aware of Where's what is the mind focused on because if the mind is focused on the burden of it, how hard it's going to be, that's just the mind. Like that's a pattern in the mind, though, something that you've trained, and it's kind of a habit of the mind, the unconscious mind is to just focus on how hard it is, as opposed to, you know, focusing on you know, how, how, why you love it, why, how good it feels, and what it's going to mean for you that day. So that's you want to be aware, on those days where you're like, I don't feel like working out like the body doesn't, or like where you're like, Yeah, I think today is a red day. I think today is a rest day, right? Be aware of how you're focused, how we're the mind is focused, if the mind is focused on how hard it's going to be. That's just mental chatter. Get your ass to the gym and go for it and move the body and do it from a place of love. Right? If if, but if you notice that like the body's actually like, you know, it's, it's, it's, this is what it takes some training, right? If the body is really like feeling rundown, and you feel like you need to just like ground and center and breathe and just kind of rejuvenate the body. Like that's, that's where you listen to it. Okay, but a lot of times most people like you and me. You know, a lot of times, people don't work out because they let the mind get in the way because they're focused on how hard it is. Yeah, right. But people like, you know, then you also have the people that like, can't get themselves to rest, right? They fear they fear not going to the gym. And again, you want to be aware of where the mind is focused, you know, and as a result of that, you know, they never see the results that they could have and they're always exhausted and they're always in injured or always hungry, they can't control themselves around food. So the key is separate the mind from the heart by starting to pay attention to what the what a good body feels like and make that your baseline and do things that will, you know, listen to the heart, you know, listen to the body, don't listen to the mind, people think that they, they should listen to the mind. I don't listen to the mind. Never like it, I train the mind to think in a direction that will take me where I want to go. That will create a lien vite vital body. And part of that is pushing it man challenging it right, making that mind strong and making the body strong. The other part of it, hey, no one when the body's to rest. Right. And, and we got a you know, especially women like you if you're especially women.
Yeah, yeah. Yeah, for sure. Do you feel like so, you know, with, with where you're talking about kind of shifting from focusing on the mind? And like, Are there any like prompts during the day that you have to remind you of this? Or like, you know, like, yeah, yeah, so maybe we can talk about some of that. And I have like this, this post a note. So, um, have you ever before we get into that? Let me just check time. Okay, so we have, do you have a few more minutes? I got a few more minutes. Okay. So I have you ever heard the book tiny habits. I think it's one of those like self development habit, habit books. I do like a book club in my in my membership group. It's called the flex fan my membership, it's pretty new. But we're reading this book together called Tiny habits. And one of the things they started with, and I actually wrote this on a post it note and put it on my computer says, I change best by feeling good, not feeling bad. And so that I just wanted to point out, because some of the things that you've said, align with that, right? So like, we have to focus on, you know, what we're feeling like the positives, right? Not like, Oh, I feel like I'm looking in the mirror, and I feel so fat today, or, like, you know, those types of things. So, I just wanted to say that out loud. So so people heard I feel good by or sorry, I changed but Best Buy, feeling good. Not feeling bad. So focusing on the good focusing on that side, versus focusing on the negative and, and the how hard things are, and things like that. So with that being said, what are in this last thing we talked about, because we're running low on time, but like the prompts during the day, like so I have this little post it note on my computer sticking there so that I can see it every second. And I kind of do that with some other things. But are there any, like tricks or things that you do throughout your day?
Yeah, like First off, like, something like that, that I would tell my clients that really aligns with that is focus on where you want to go not where you are, right? Like focus on the that vision of of who you choose to be and the life you want to live in the body want to, like have like the experience, not where I am, like not how we are my you know how fat I feel right now, right? Like, we want to train our mind our nervous system to be where we want to go. But in the way that we do that, right? Because the thing is, is that most of us have trained distraction. We're constantly we got text messages, emails, we're, you know, the mind thinks about our workout, and then our meal, and then it thinks about like that, that I don't know, piece of clothing that you should have bought, or they eat or Aaron that you need to run or whatever, you know, like, the mind is frickin everywhere. So yeah, we need to train focus, right? Like, that's a problem with so many people as they set these goals, but then it's like, they may be like, it's just the mind, the habit of the mind is to think it's just thinking all the time. And if you don't give it something to focus on, and you don't train it to focus on that one thing all day long, every single day, chances are pretty slim that you're gonna create that thing, you're gonna get that result. Okay, so we obsess on vision, we obsess on it. I mean, we obsess. Like, we were in one of the things that we do is we set check ins in the day, all throughout the day, you know, every hour or every two hours or three hours, whatever. And we check in with ourselves, hey, where am I? All right, like, you know, am I am I aligning with that person who I want to be? And what's my next step? How can I align with that vision right now? How can I think in that way? How can I feel that peace right now how can I train myself to feel that that that that self control around food, how can I train myself to feel at peace with this rest day? What reasons you know, how can I you know, I can I can look to other people to help me feel like you know, I can look at other people who've done it just to kind of create that belief, you know, so that's what we do. We use check ins all throughout the day to keep us focused on where we're going. And so that we're like when you train the mind to do that, it automatically starts to find ways to to create that like it'll automatically find reasons of why I feel at peace right now like, reasons to Yeah, it's kind of hard. I don't want to go into it, but it's the mind will We'll start to just orient in that way where you're always you know, it's always thinking about what I'm what I'm working on what I'm working towards, and you spend less time making decisions that the impulsive decisions like eating food or, you know, needing forcing yourself to work out or, you know, getting stressed out or whatever, because you're always focused on where you're going.
Gotcha. Yeah, that makes total sense. Do you use like, I'm just trying to, like, get super practical for takeaway, like do you use? Do you set alarms throughout your day? Or like you have, okay, like, on your phone, just like, because, you know, like, with the Apple Watch, basically like this. Okay, cool. So how many times would you recommend starting, like, just like that every hour, or every three hours just to save any as, you know, if you want to do 1000 reps, you change your patterns faster, you get to where you want to be faster, if you want to do one rep a day, may take you 10 years, you know, yeah, yeah. So it's up to you, like, literally every second of the day is an opportunity to ask yourself, Where am I right now? And am I being the person that I need to be? That's going to that's going to create the life I want? Every second of the day? That's why we do so much awareness training. Yeah, well, yeah, I mean, but when you just start to get in the habit, if you you know, setting an alarm every hour like, and especially if you are using, like the tools that we have, you will just start to train yourself to always be aware of where I'm at. So that you spend less time creating in the direction that you don't want to go and you're start. And you're taking actions that align with where you do want to go.
I love that. I love that. All right, I want to I want to respect your time. So the last question, I always end on this question. Is there anything that you've changed your mind about in the last year? And why can be anything at all?
Yeah. Yeah, I mean, I think the biggest thing that I'm realizing is that there's just there's not one way to do it, you know, to do anything, whether that be meditation, like there's no. Like, there's not one way to get lean, not one way to have to eat or workout that you have to do. There's no, right way. And is this like something that I've changed? It's not really, I guess, like, even with with my business, you know, I've been told, Oh, you got to post this many times, you got to do this many stories, you got to write your email list once a week, like and I'm just, I frickin I've just said no to all of that, and I just do what works for me. And there's no, it's just, it's just letting go of all the I have to do it a certain way. And, and just making sure that you're aligning with the person that you want to be like, that's the most important thing, like just let go of all the, the expectations of how you have to do things, you know, yeah. Yeah.
I love that. I love that. It kind of aligns with something that I always, you know, try to tell my clients is, you know, we're trying to not fit, you're like, we come up with a plan. It's like, we're not trying to fit you into this plan, or your lifestyle into this plan, or trying to fit the plan into your lifestyle into what works for you. And I think that's something that a lot of people get caught up on. Like, there's, there's one way like, I have to do it this way, because this person did it. So I love that. Absolutely. Couldn't agree more. Yeah. Awesome. So this is a really fun conversation. Thank you so much for for your time. Do you want to tell our viewers and listeners where they can find you, your website? Anything that you're excited about that you have coming up?
Yeah, so I'm the most active on Instagram. No more Facebook, no more email? Well, I actually do have an email list, but I don't really send out emails anymore. But yeah, you can find me on Instagram at Natalie dot Newhart. That's where I do all my promotional stuff. You know, you'll hear about events that I'm running workshops that I'm running classes I'm running, and my website is fit addicted nutrition.com which I don't really like use it all that much. I'd say just just find me on Instagram. And then, you know, every three months, I run a 12 week mindset class. So I take people through one of these phases, you know, so if you just want to try out one phase, you can totally do that if you want to do the whole year and go in depth on nutrition, you know, exercise mindset, all of it, then I have a separate program for that. So yeah, so but I'll always be promoting it on Instagram. So that's a place to check me out. And reach out to me if you want to set up a call. I'd be happy to just you know, get on a quick call with you and just you know, get you to where you want to go that much faster stuff. We have so much time.
Love it. Awesome. All right. I will definitely link all of that in the show notes so people can check it out. And yeah, again, super, super fun conversation. Thank you so much for your time and And hopefully I'll talk to you soon.
Thanks. I really appreciate it. It's been fun.
Like thanks so much for tuning in to another episode of Metflex and Chill. I hope you enjoyed it. It'd be awesome if you could give the show five stars and leave a review on iTunes. We're trying to get placed in the top 100 Health podcasts and the five star ratings and reviews are what can help make that happen. All add step by step directions for leaving a review in the show notes. I know it's a big ask but it really helps. Thanks again. See you next time.
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