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fitness

The Journey to Impacting One Million Men’s Lives Starts with One

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The Journey to Impacting One Million Men’s Lives Starts with One

Not that long ago I had this crazy vision that was put on my heart to impact one million men’s lives through building a tribe of Spiritual Warriors. A Spiritual Warrior is a person who is willing to go on a journey of self-growth and personal discovery for a transcendent cause greater than ourselves.

I question myself every day if I am making a difference in anybody’s life. I question whether I am being the inspired leader that God is calling me to be. Am I truly modeling what it means to embody physical, mental and spiritual health?

So often we don’t know the difference we are making in people’s lives. We hope and pray that we are, but until someone is willing to go out of their way to tell us how we have impacted their lives, it’s really hard to know.

I say this because I recently had someone I mentor share a blog post with me that he wrote recently for a class he is taking in college. I am going to include the prompt and what he wrote about how I have impacted his life, and how he is in turn impacting other people’s lives because of his own personal growth and willingness to be an inspired leader himself.

This young man just happens to be only twenty-one years old, but in my opinion, he is one of the finest Spiritual Warriors I have ever met. It just goes to show you that God can use us no matter if we are young, old or anywhere in between. We just have to be willing and courageous.

The prompt for the post was…

“Think of someone in your life who’s had a significant positive influence on you. Maybe it’s a parent, a coach, a teacher, or a friend. Maybe they encouraged you to believe in yourself or empowered you to do things you didn’t know you could. Who are these people to you?”

Pick one of them and answer the following four questions.

1. Who is this very special person in your life? Why do you choose them as one of your biggest positive influencers?

2. What did they specifically do that you found so meaningful?

3. What are the results of their actions on you and your life?

4. Going forward, what are some things you can do for yourself and for others to honor this person’s contribution to you?

Cade’s Blog Post

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“One of the biggest influences in my life has been my friend and mentor Troy Ismir. I met him at the gym we both attend and I have looked up to him since the day I met him. I chose him as one of my biggest positive influencers because of his outlook on life and his execution of his vision.

He left a comfy job as a pharmaceutical salesman in Orlando Florida, where he was getting quarterly bonuses north of $10,000, to come to Colorado and chase his dreams of being a fitness and faith coach. He focuses on three aspects of health…mental, physical, and spiritual. He is one of the few that left comfort to pursue his passion and execute his vision. He has started multiple groups in town, as well as a website and podcast where he shares ideas of ways to better ourselves.

Some of the specific things he did that I found so meaningful were that he showed interest in me and the pursuit of my passion, he pushed me to be better as a physical trainer and life mentor, he challenged me to make changes in my life that were tough, but that ultimately benefited me. He also invited me to many of his groups where I have built great relationships. He has always been open for me to talk to him even when they are awkward or tough situations. He never makes me feel dumb or small and always tries to give me helpful advice and feedback.

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The results of his actions on myself and my life are that I constantly search for ways to push myself and better myself mentally, physically, and spiritually. He has made me strive to be a more integral man, someone who shows respect to all people, and he has helped me get out of my comfort zone in many areas, which helps me grow as a person.

In order to honor Troy’s contribution to my life I believe that it is important that I can continue to show up to his group meetings, subscribe to his website, and his podcast so that he can continue to grow his dreams and help others the way he helped me. I will also mentor and treat others the way Troy has done to me. This will positively impact others’ lives and carry on his legacy. He always talks about wanting to make an impact that is bigger than himself. In my eyes he already has. So I can honor him by telling him how he’s helped me and by helping others the way he helped me. His impact will grow exponentially if I can do what he did for me.”

Words EnCOURAGE

I have truly been honored and humbled to be a part of Cade’s journey and growth as a young man. God brought Cade into my life for a reason. His words enCOURAGEd me, they literally put courage in me to keep working hard for what God has set forth before me.

So if you are doubting whether you are having the impact in this world that you are hoping to, remember it starts with making a difference in one person’s life. The message I want to send you is don’t give up. Be persistent. The world needs you to make the impact you are called to make. 

If you are someone who is being greatly impacted by someone and your life is better because of your interaction with this person, I strongly enCOURAGE you to be bold and tell that person how much of a difference they have made in your life. It may just be the words of enCOURAGEment they need to keep moving forward. 

Troy Ismir, MS

Author, Podcaster, Speaker and Spiritual Warrior Coach

troyismir.com

www.facebook.com/troyspiritualwarrior

Spiritual Warriors Unite Podcast

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Being Stable in an Unstable World

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Being Stable in an Unstable World

I have been a personal trainer for over 25 years. In the health and fitness industry that makes me kind of ancient. There aren’t too many gray hairs in the fitness industry. I have been a faith-based personal trainer for the last five years. That is when God put it on my heart to not leave the most important part out of the equation of health and fitness, Jesus.

Mobility and Stability

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A big part of my personal training philosophy is based around helping my clients with mobility and stability. Without those two aspects of fitness we will always struggle with our fitness. One of the most important things I learned from Gray Cook, one of the top strength and conditioning specialists and physical therapists in our industry is to, “Never put strength on top of dysfunction.” Another words, don’t make someone stronger when their body isn’t mobile or stable. This will only lead to injury and poor movement patterns. I practice and preach this philosophy in my own life and my clients’ training programs.

We are Mind, Body and Soul

That takes care of the physical stability piece. But more importantly what about our spiritual stability. If we are physically stable and spiritually unstable we aren’t going to be whole. We are body, mind and soul. If I am not helping my clients with their spiritual growth and spiritual stability I am doing my clients a disservice.

What I have learned is not to preach it, but to live it. To be it. Not from perfection, but actually learning how to share the chinks in my armor. Not to pretend to have it all together when I don’t.

The first half of yesterday was a wheels off day. I felt run down and tired. My throat hurt. I can’t stand to admit when I don’t feel well, but yesterday was one of those days where I just wanted to stay home and rest. I didn’t feel very inspirational and I certainly didn’t feel like training or ministering to anyone. But, yet that is what I do and I found a way to find my stable ground in Jesus.

I Will Not be Shaken

Here is the scripture that I leaned into for my spiritual stability. “I keep my eyes always on the Lord. With him at my right hand, I will not be shaken.” Psalm 16:8 I felt very unstable yesterday in an unstable world. Through some meditation and prayer and leaning into this scripture I was reminded that Jesus is our source of stability in an unstable world.

I have my clients do planks for their core stability and I remind them of scriptures for their spiritual stability. We need both. We will not live our best life if we are physically, mentally or spiritually unstable.

It is vital to work on your physical stability through core work every day and make spiritual stability part of your everyday routine. I believe with all of my heart and soul the integration of faith and fitness is the best way to live our best life the way God intended us to. Start to include God in your workouts. Start to recite scripture when you are out walking or doing a one minute plank. I guarantee you will see results like you have never seen before. It’s amazing what God can do when we include Him in every part of our life.

Troy Ismir, MS

Author, Podcaster, Speaker and Spiritual Warrior Coach

troyismir.com

www.facebook.com/troyspiritualwarrior

Spiritual Warriors Unite Podcast

Instagram

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Are You Dense?

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Are You Dense?

“Beloved, I pray that you may prosper in all things and be in good health, just as your soul prospers.”

3 John 1:2

OBESITY AND TYPE 2 DIABETES

I think we have all heard these statistics before.   In fact we have heard them so much I think we have become numb to them because being overweight has become normal.  7 out of every 10 Americans are overweight.  4 out of every 10 Americans are obese.  1 out of every 2 Americans has some type of chronic disease such as heart disease or diabetes.  Currently there are 30 million Americans living in the United States with diagnosed diabetes, costing the US healthcare system 245 billion dollars.   One of the main reasons that disease is so rampant in the United States is due to the over consumption of processed foods. 

I think most everyone knows that eating sugar and processed foods isn’t very good for us, but so many people continue to consume these foods.  One of the reasons for this is that processed foods are specifically designed to be addictive.    Processed and packaged foods are also readily available at the grocery store and heavily marketed to kids and adults alike.    

As a nation these processed foods are being over consumed, but it is leaving our bodies literally starving for nutrients.   We have it backwards in this country.  We eat a lot of food, but get very little nutrition.  We actually don’t need a lot of food, but we do need a lot of nutrition.

NUTRIENT DENSE

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That is where eating foods that are nutrient dense comes in.    Nutrient density refers to a food that is relatively rich in nutrients for the number of calories it contains.  It’s getting the most bang for your buck so to speak.  This is true both literally, getting the most nutrients and energy per calorie, and figuratively, spending your hard earned dollars on foods that leave you satisfied and sustain your metabolic needs. 

It’s a fact that purchasing foods that keep you satiated and nourish every cell in the body keep you from wasting money on expensive packaged snacks, fast foods, and unhealthy foods that lack the ability to provide what the body needs. 

In order to get your hijacked taste buds back, start eating foods that are very nutrient dense.  Here is a list of some of the top nutrient dense foods you can consume. 

·         Kale

·         Watercress

·         Bok Choy

·         Spinach

·         Brussel Sprouts

·         Carrots

·         Broccoli

·         Cranberries

·         Strawberries

·         Raspberries

·         Blueberries

·         Flax Seeds

·         Basil

 A POWER SALAD A DAY KEEPS THE DOCTOR AWAY

One suggestion that I like to make to people is try to eat at least one power salad a day.   Have a big bowl of greens such as spinach and kale and top it off with some berries, broccoli sprouts, peppers and other vegetables you enjoy. 

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 Start gradually by replacing one meal that would normally be full of processed foods and eat a power salad instead.  Eventually replace all processed foods with real food that is nutrient dense.    You will get your health back and drop those extra pounds without starving yourself to death.

 According to Webster’s Dictionary, the original definition of the word diet is “the usual food and drink consumed by an organism.”  However in today’s society the word diet has become a nasty four letter word.  Most people associate the word “diet” with restricting food intake in order to lose weight.  The thought of restriction elicits all types of negative emotions setting most people up for failure before they have even begun to make changes.    My goal is to change this paradigm. 

Diet is what you do on a daily basis to nourish every cell in your body; it’s a lifestyle.  What you choose to put in your mouth moves you in one of two directions; the direction of health and nourishment or the direction of disease and degeneration.  The choice is yours.  You have the God given power and strength to decide.  The good news is that even small changes in your eating habits can yield big results!

Troy Ismir, MS

Spiritual Warrior Coach

 

 

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From It's too Hard to Unlimited Possibilities

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From It's too Hard to Unlimited Possibilities

Our physical health is so easy to take for granted.  We have done a very poor job as a society of taking care of our health.   We have done an even worse job in the fitness industry of helping people get physically fit and healthy. 

The fitness industry has made it all about appearance.  We have made it all about weight loss, the way we look on the outside.   Most people give up on making a physical transformation after trying time and time again to get healthy and changing their body composition. 

What I have learned on my journey is that making any change in our life can be hard.   The struggle is real.  I don’t know one single person who has it all together physically, mentally and spiritually. 

Physical Challenges Lead to a Transformed Life

Since I started my fitness ministry full time a little over a year ago, I have realized how important it is to have physical challenges in our life.  I have seen in my life and in my clients life how challenging ourselves physically opens up the door to personal and spiritual growth.  When we challenge ourselves physically beyond what we think we are capable of it leads to a life transformed. 

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The struggle is where the growth is.   When we are willing to push our limitations physically, we find out who we truly are.   Are we that guy that is sitting on the couch watching our life go by or are we that guy who embraces physical challenges to get mentally stronger and add depth to our spirituality?

When we go beyond the limitations we place on ourselves physically and the resistance we put up to make changes, the possibilities are endless. 

Is it hard, yes!  Will there be some struggle, yes!  But when we accomplish something that is physically hard we feel so good about ourselves.  It creates a confidence in us that we can do bigger and better things. 

Stepping in to who God is Calling us to Be

The whole point of challenging ourselves physically is so we can have the inner strength and fortitude to step into who God is calling us to be.   So we aren’t living lives that don’t make us feel fully alive. 

One of my clients in particular who completely lost his inner warrior, both physically and mentally, has transformed his life.  It all started with the physical.  He is now doing things physically he never thought possible.  But that’s not the point.  The point is he is now living for a transcendent cause greater than himself.  That is the true mark of a spiritual warrior.  He is following through on dreams he has been sitting on for the past ten years. 

After reclaiming his inner warrior by challenging himself physically he has found a new zeal for life.  After living a life of complacency for the past ten years, he is ready to kick some ass again. 

What about you?  Are you ready to push yourself physically again?  Are you ready to get off the couch and into the arena?   Are you ready to change your mentality from it’s too hard to having a mindset that the struggle is where the growth is?   When we do something that’s hard is when we find out what we are truly made of. 

Have Faith in Ourselves through Faith in God

When we have faith in ourselves through faith in God is when we breakthrough our limitations.    Get out of your comfort zone.  Get comfortable being uncomfortable.  Set a challenging fitness goal for yourself and see not only a physical transformation, but most importantly a life changing spiritual transformation.  You will bust through barriers you never thought possible.    Never settle for the status quo. 

Troy Ismir, MS

Spiritual Warrior

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It's OK to be a Beginner

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It's OK to be a Beginner

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I felt inept.  I lacked confidence.  I was worried I would hurt myself.  That describes how I felt last week when I decided I would give mountain biking a try.  It has been over five years since I have done any “real” mountain biking.  I have been wanting to get back out there for a while, but I have been so focused on my road cycling I didn’t have time. 

As I went on the so called “beginner” trail with my heart pumping and not knowing what to expect I was greeted with more protruding and jagged rocks than I would expect on a “beginner” trail.  All I thought as I was praying that I could get over those rocks is that it would really hurt to have one of those jabbed into my side.  I could feel my lungs being punctured.  Not a good thought at all. 

As I tentatively navigated over the rocks, I saw an uphill climb approaching with what I would call some large impediments that I would have to jump over.    In my mind, I quickly processed if I should take a chance and try to ride over them or to get off my bike and walk over the obstacles.  My risk-adverse side said to hop off the bike and play it safe, which I did. 

In between the tentativeness and slow pace I kept, I did take some time to look at all of the natural beauty around me.  It was amazing.  No cars to deal with and I only came across a few people.  I can see why people love to mountain bike. 

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I did make it to the end of my ride without any disasters.  I was humbled and was reminded of what it felt like to be a beginner.  I am an expert in the gym both as a fitness professional and a long time body builder.  I am an advanced road cyclist and an above average golfer. 

This experience on my mountain bike as a beginner really made me stop and think about my clients and potential clients I will be working with.   It made me think about how they feel when they first come to train with me.   How they must feel as a beginner.  The courage it takes to go into the unknown and being OK with being a beginner. 

I lead a Faith and Fitness class at a church and we regularly have about fifteen people come to the class.   It takes a great deal of bravery to attend a class for the first time not knowing what to expect, especially if you are new to fitness. 

I have always had a great deal of compassion for people who are new to exercise and I will have even more after this reminder of what it feels like to be a beginner. 

If you are not doing something that you have always wanted to do because you are afraid of being a beginner, I want to encourage you to do it anyways.  Embrace being a beginner.   It’s about the journey and what you learn about yourself along the way. 

I will be back on my mountain bike this week.  I know I will be better this time than I was last time.  I will enjoy being a beginner and see what I can learn about myself along the way.  I will get out of my comfort zone and realize I don’t have to be an expert at everything.  If I stay at this long enough, I can become an expert at this too and if I don’t that is just fine by me.  I will be a better person for trying.

Troy Ismir, MS

Spiritual Warrior Coach

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Go for God (and Break through the Chains)

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Go for God (and Break through the Chains)

I recently started to dig back into reading one of my favorite books from one of my favorite spiritual teachers.  The book is called A Return to Love:  Reflections on the Principles of a Course in Miracles by Marianne Williamson. 

We all have our areas where we struggle in life and we have to break through barriers and self-limiting beliefs.   In her book, Marianne recounted a story about a woman who had lost a huge amount of weight.  When Marianne asked her how she did it, she replied, “I asked God to do it for me.  I just asked that he take the monkey off my back.  I didn’t even care if I was fat.  I told Him that if He wanted me to be fat, to make me comfortable with it.  I just wanted out of this Hell.”

Marianne, who also struggled with her weight earlier in her life, ultimately decided her weight didn’t really matter.  All that mattered was love.   If she could concentrate more on training her mind to live from a place of love, rather than fear, all of her problems would disappear. 

She shared that in Eastern religions that their philosophy is, “Go for God, and all that is not authentically you will drop.”  Once Marianne stopped thinking so much about her weight, she looked in the mirror one day and saw that it was gone.  She realized that her weight had nothing to do with her body, but with her mind. 

Does this story sound familiar to you?  What if you asked God to help you break through your chains?  Do you believe in miracles?  As this woman who lost a great deal of weight did, ask God to do it for you.  He will give you a miracle if you are open to receiving it and are willing to put the work in.

I recently received a miracle in my own life.  One area that I needed a miracle in was to release the need for external validation.  Looking for happiness and validation outside of myself.  I am sure many of you can relate to this as this is one of the most common human struggles. 

I asked God to release me from this need.  To know that my happiness comes from inside and ultimately from God.    The scripture that God put on my heart comes from John 14:27 which states, “Peace I leave with you, my peace I give to you:  I do not give to you as the world gives.  Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.” 

Making a change and breaking a pattern starts with a decision.   A decision that you are ready to break through the chains and go for God.  Once you do that miracles can happen instantly.  It doesn’t mean you stop going for God.  It will take continuous work on your mind and going for God in prayer and guidance.  The key is not to do this alone.  Ask God to do it for you and be willing to do the work. 

Once you break through those chains you will feel freer, lighter, more joyful and have internal peace like you never thought possible. 

If you are ready to reclaim your inner warrior and get fit from the inside out so you can have more vitality, adventure and purpose in your life, contact me at troy@troyismir.com.   I would love to be a part of your tribe to help you live the life you were created to live.

Troy Ismir, MS

Spiritual Warrior

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