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I need coaches in my life… a lot of them.

I currently have a marriage coach, finance coach, nutrition coach, business coach, writing coach, parenting coach, strength-training coach, and I look to my pastor as my spiritual coach.

Do I pay for all of them? No, but for some I do.

Why? I can’t trust myself. What? You heard me. I am a notorious self-sabotage and famous for self-deconstructing.

It’s ok. I know down deep I was built for community. I need others because iron sharpens iron. I need coaches.

Recently I read The Entrepreneur Roller Coaster and Darren Hardy said,

“The greatest athletes in the world hire the most expensive coaches, consultants, and advisors. The greatest companies do the same, CEO’s and celebrities, too. Why? Because they know that investing in themselves is what got them to where they are, and they know they need to keep doing it to grow and stay at the top of their game.”

I actually just got done paying nearly $1000 to go through a 12-month course called Start Up Camp. I signed a commitment letter and mailed it to Dale Partridge when I first started. I watched every coaching video, took detailed notes, printed off every document, showed up for a few monthly QnA’s, engaged in the private Facebook group, and about to take a 100 question exam to become a graduate.

The #1 thing I learned was that, I don’t need to do everything in my business, but I need to know about everything that’s going on in my business.

It was the best professional and personal development decision I’ve made in a long time, maybe ever.

Here’s five reasons why hiring a coach is worth it. I’m stealing these from Justin Wise but they hold true to my experiences as well.

A good coach…

1. Is a Shortcut to Success

I don’t like making mistakes and believe me I’ve made a ton from leading student ministries, planting a church, starting a triathlon chaplaincy, and several years ago birthing Fit Pastors. I remember hearing Dale Partridge say,

“One hour with me will save you a year.”

Wow. I thought that’s kind of cocky. It was true. I only wish I’d taken the course two years ago.  It has given me a confidence now in coaching pastors that I can save them a year of the vicious cycle in one hour with a new perspective and mindset.

2. Can See Your Blind Spots

So many pastors come to me feeling stuck in their health. Do you know what I see in so many including myself? They want overnight success. They want to plant healthy seeds, skip cultivating, and go right onto harvest. It takes a long time to put on a lot of weight, and guess what? It takes even longer to lose it.

3. Will Hold You Accountable

When I sent that letter to Dale along with hundreds of other entrepreneurs I committed on the dotted line. I will probably never meet Dale and he probably doesn’t even know who I am, but I know me. I committed and I wanted to finish. I’m accountable to the community of campers within Start Up Camp.

4. Will Keep You Humble

I don’t like asking for help who does? I have to swallow a really big glass of pride every single time I reach out. I know though that the Lord gives grace to the humble.

5. Will Expand Your Network

The best part about getting a coach is you get access to their community. This is what I love about Fit Pastors so much. You get to be a part of a tribe of pastors, missionaries, and church planters all on mission to get and stay healthy. You get to hang out with other pastors!

So pastors and leaders who are you allowing to coach you – to ask you the tough questions on a regular basis? In what areas of your life do you need coaches?  The New Year is just a few days away isn’t it time to secure a coach to finally conquer your health?

Check out my spiritual coach and pastor Scott Wilson in this interview as he reached out to Fit Pastors to get health coaching. Skip to the final 5 minutes and listen to what he says about gulping pride.

 

 

If you’re interested in grabbing a spot in an upcoming huddle, gain access to the Fit Pastors Academy course, and have your own personal coach click here.

This article was part three of a series called “Pastors Need Health Coaches”.  Click here to read part one and click here to read part two.

I leave you with this quote from the book Next Generational Leader,

It is impossible to maximize your potential in any area without coaching. You may be good. You may be even better than everyone else, but without outside input you will never be as good as you could be. To be the best next generation leader you can be, you must enlist the help of others. Self-evaluation is helpful, but evaluation from someone else is essential. You need a leadership coach”. Andy Stanley

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WE HAVE 43 PASTORS SIGNED UP FOR OUR FALL HUDDLE SEASON!!!

Why is that a really big deal? I don’t have time to say everything in my heart right now but I will say this.

Each one of those 43 pastors has a name, a heart, a wife, children, staff, and churches that they are leading.

Can you imagine if each of them get healthier? Lose weight? Gain confidence? Energy? Extends their longevity in ministry?  Continue Reading…

Just wanted to encourage you today as you continue to move forward in your health journey.  Some of you are FULL THROTTLE hitting workouts, others are dialing it in on your nutrition using Lose It, others have taken a million steps for bragging rights on your Fit Bit, and others are still swamped with summer ministry and haven’t had an opportunity to really get into a rhythm yet. It’s all good we all have our own journey in this. Continue Reading…

Today I want to share my system for tracking my workouts.

In a nutshell, if you don’t track your workouts it is really hard to accomplish your health goals.  It is essential to track in order to see your progress and get unstuck.

I agree with fitness guru James Clear who says that tracking your workouts whether it be with a workout journal, a fitness app, or something else) should accomplish 3 goals… Here’s what he says,

1.  It should be quick and easy, so that you can spend your time exercising. Your time should be spent doing the work, not recording it.

2.  It should be useful. Our modern world is overflowing with data and most of it is never acted upon.

3.  It should be versatile.

With that said, here’s the workout journal tracking system that has worked best for me.

To start, I use this:

journal

I paid around $14 for it at a Hastings book store but you can order it cheaper from Amazon here.  Obviously, any notebook will do, but I like this particular one because it is small enough to toss in my bag and it has a firm water-proof/ sweat-proof cover that doesn’t bend or tear with repeated use.

For the past several years I’ve tried to use an app or something on my computer but for me it was hard to keep up with and I needed something right there during and immediately after my workouts so I wouldn’t forget what I just did rather it be a weight or amount of reps.  I needed something more #2 and #3 from above.  For you it may be different but just remember the goal is to track so find a system that works for you.

I still use Lose It to keep track of my nutrition and caloric intake.  For greater accountability give someone your login and password.  If you need more direction hire a coach to help you navigate your nutrition.

How to Track Your Workouts

Step 1: Record the date, your bodyweight, (up to you to do it daily or weekly just keep in mind it fluctuates so don’t get discouraged if you do it daily) and your sleeping patterns.

I typically do this as soon as my early morning time with the Lord is complete and right before I head to the gym.

Step 2: Write your planned workout routine for the day in the following format:

[Cardio Exercise] — [Time] [Distance] [Intensity] + additional notes

[Strength Training] — [Weight] – [Sets] x [Reps]

log

At this point, I write out what I expect to do for the day.  You can see to the right what I did just a few days ago as an example.

I write out every single set I do, including any warm-up, because it keeps me focused and progressing forward.  Once I have a plan, I can just pick up the weights and go.

Step 3: Record tally marks as you complete your work sets or adjust weights as you go if need be.

When you’re in the middle of a workout, it can be easy to forget what set you just completed. This is especially true when the weight gets heavy and you’re too busy huffing and puffing to remember if you just finished set 2 or 3.

For me, the lifting sequence usually goes like this:

Do the lift.
Make a tally mark, record, and make adjustment.
I don’t stop and rest in between sets as I want to keep my heart rate up and avoid wasting too much time in the gym.  I usually hit the water fountain after every round of sets.
If necessary, change the weight for the next set.
Repeat.

Step 4: Vary this basic structure as needed for the training session.

The beauty of this system is that it’s incredibly versatile while still being clean and simple for any given workout.  As James Clear states,

“Most apps and pieces of software meanwhile are either simple but limited, or versatile but bloated with features.”

If you need just a simple first step to get going print off or download the simple 7-day tracker that we developed  within Fit Pastors below.

What works for you?  How do you keep track of your workouts?  Would love to hear!

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I’m not the food police or the food critic.  Ah that feels good to get that out there.

Since becoming the “Fit Pastor Guy”, it’s almost like there’s this quiet, under the radar, elephant in the room, awkwardness at times when I walk into a room.  Usually I’m in a setting with pastors that involves food and thus I’m almost like a priest where they feel like they need to confess or show me they are doing good-by making a healthy choice.  I get it and understand.  Actually it is funny at time on both ends.

Several nights ago I was at a restaurant and several pastors were showing me what they had on their plates to make sure I saw they were making healthy choices.  Several other pastors expressed to me,

“Hey Ricky, just so you know I’m ordering what I feel like tonight so just sayin.”

I love when guys say that!  I reply,

“Yes man make your own choice and don’t worry for a minute what I think!”

Honestly, I don’t enter a room and stare with a microscope what everyone’s got on their plates with judgement ready to drip condemnation.  I’m focused on my own plate and watching that I set an example and hopefully influence others to make healthy choices.  That’s it.  Several pastors ordered desserts and I passed.

Because I’m legalistic?  No.  Because I want to be at a higher standard?  No.  Why then?  Because sugar wrecks me.  Just a little bit in my system sends me spiraling.  It isn’t worth it to me.  It’s different for everyone.  I’m not saying I don’t eat sugar because I do at times, but I’m simply trying to reduce it and stay away from it when I can.

Another pastor I had lunch with after ordering and sitting down for a one-on-one said,

“Man I just get so intimidated by you.”  I replied, “Why because you think I’m perfect? haha”.

Listen, I LOVE PASTORS!  I’m called by God and have been given the assignment to help, encourage, be a cheerleader, inspire, motivate, challenge, and pray for pastors that need and want help!  I just want pastors to be set free from the bondage of poor health.  I help pastors when they are ready and try to be a guide every step of the way.  It’s never perfect.

I don’t have it all together in my health either.  Yes I lost a lot of weight in my past, yes I have certifications, yes I’ve finished Ironmans, but that doesn’t give me a free pass for health or make me the perfect health guru.

I still struggle.  I have my own health to be concerned about.  If a pastor wants help I can help but it isn’t a one size fits all with food choices.

One of my theme passages on this whole topic is found in Galatians 6 verses 4-5 listen closely and apply it to food,

“Make a careful exploration of who you are and the work you have been given, and then sink yourself into that. Don’t be impressed with yourself. Don’t compare yourself with others. Each of you must take responsibility for doing the creative best you can with your own life.

Isn’t that incredible?  That should set you free!  So to all you pastors out there that might be intimidated or concerned when you see me, just know I’m trying to do the creative best with my own life, here to help if you need me, but not comparing myself to you and your own health journey.  Remember, I’m looking at my plate not yours.  I want to encourage all of you pastors that are attempting to make healthy choices,

“So let’s not allow ourselves to get fatigued doing good. At the right time we will harvest a good crop if we don’t give up, or quit. Galatians 6:9