GETFOXFIT | IFBB Bikini Fitness Athlete & Kidney Cancer Survivor Lisanne Keir

Contest Prep | Weight Training | Fitness Motivation | Nutrition & Healthy Living Inspiration


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Thank You to our Coach – Jerry Koolhoven

Lisanne Vos and Jerry Koolhoven - Enercup 2014

I’m busy writing and putting together a blog post about my biggest learnings from this contest prep and one thing is extremely clear – none of it would have been possible without this man – our Coach Jerry Koolhoven Nbbf Bondscoach.

At the beginning of this year I went to him with a specific goal and with his help, support and guidance throughout this year I couldn’t be happier with the physique I walked on stage with at the Enercup.

He knew my ultimate criteria was to be as healthy as I could be (especially after cancer), stick to my specific eating habits (a combo of vegan and macrobiotic) and ensure my one remaining kidney would stay safe and sound.

Jerry, thanks so much! Not only am I happy about the physical changes but I’ve never felt healthier in my life.

Maarten winning 4th place in the -90kg bodybuilding class and me winning the People’s Choice Award was the icing on the cake.

Truly Humbled and Honoured!

Excted for the changes we can bring in the next 7 weeks for the FlexCup.

Lisanne Vos and Jerry Koolhoven - Enercup 2014

Lisanne Vos and Maarten Vos - Enercup 2014
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Why you have to lose sight of the shore…

Bikini Competitor Lisanne Vos (www.getfoxfit.com)

“You can never cross the ocean unless you have the courage to lose sight of the shore” – Christopher Columbus

 

Coming from a person who would always take the least riskiest approach, these are such awesome and powerful words.

This quote really helps you to re-think not only where you are currently at and what you want, but how you have to leave your ‘safe zone’ to reach your goal.

Please don’t waste your energy on worrying

If you want something in life you need to ‘un-worry’ yourself about the things that may go wrong; the doubts, the risks, what could, or may/may not happen… those emotions and thoughts serve no purpose.  As a born worrier I know what it’s like to over think things and worry about ALLLLLL the things that could happen – it’s wasted negative energy.  And that precious energy can be far better spent on positive thoughts, ambitious thinking and actionable doing.

Why you need to lose sight of the shore

Over this past year I have had many learnings, the biggest being that in order to progress in life you have to let go of the safe and the familiar.  You need to take that first step and you need to get out your comfort zone.  If you want to move forward with your life you need to make a choice, make a plan and take steps that may seem scary at first but will bring you closer to what you want.

No matter what it is – a new career move, a new friendship, a new hobby, a new lifestyle, a new family tradition, a new place to call home, a new study, a new way of eating, a new venture… whatever.

You have one life so, seize the day and do what makes you happy.

What’s the worst that can happen?  It doesn’t work out?!  So what!  You tried and that’s more than if you were to just sit there and wonder ‘what could have been’ whilst worrying unnecessarily about all the stuff that may/may not happen.

In order to get to where you want to be you need to leave the shore.

Just Do It

To those who keep thinking about changes they want to make in their lives: stop thinking – start doing.

Start planning and start taking small baby steps each and every day to inch yourself further to your dream / ambition / goal / idea.

Use your internal compass to guide you, start drawing your ‘map’ and set sail.

And please please enjoy the journey – the hours, weeks, months it may take you.

The joy and the pleasure and the hard work and the sweat and the tears and the frustrations and the moments when you want to throw in the towel – those are the moments that make you, build personal progress and growth.  Good character building stuff, as my mum would say.

You will look back and cherish both the good and challenging memories so dearly – they make reaching your goal all that more worth while.

Your journey and your voyage is your legacy, don’t forget that!

So, un-hook your anchor, set off on your exciting voyage and spread those sails!  New, and magical, lands are waiting for you…

What would you lose sight of the shore for?

Special thanks to Dave Vartan for my beautiful leg piece – a total work of art, which is a constant reminder to set sail and embark on new journeys.


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To Mark the 1 Year Anniversary of being told ‘You have Cancer’ – Here are the 22 Things Cancer Taught Me

22 Things Cancer Taught Me (www.getfoxfit.com)

1 year ago today, 5th August 2013, it was a warm, sunny, bright and beautiful summers day when I heard those 3 words no one ever wants to hear, “You have cancer”.

A whole year ago – crazy.  It seems like yesterday that I felt the ball in my abdomen and went to the hospital for an ultrasound, that lead to a CT scan, that lead to being told by the Urologist I had a massive tumor and it was kidney cancer AND it wasn’t looking too good for me.  If you are interested in reading how the events of those first days happened you can read my story and ‘diary’ here.

So 365 days.  How fast you have gone by but how amazingly pertinent you have all been.  Those days before, during and after surgery and all of the days since have been filled with more change than I could have ever imagined.

I can certainly say the last year has been one of growth, acceptance, new experiences and a whole lot of change.

To mark the 1 year anniversary I wanted to share with you the 22 things cancer has taught me:

1. Be honest

Especially with yourself

2. Worrying won’t change the outcome 

So be happy and positive instead

3. Evaluate what really makes you happy

Those things (big or small) will be the essence of your life and the things that precious memories are made of

4. Communicate with your loved ones

Plain and simple, even better relationships can be built through unforeseen and challenging times

5. Let go

Thoughts of I wish I did this, or I wish I said that, or I wish I made a different decision… well it’s all in the past, let it go

6. Slow down

Stop rushing through your food, savour the moment and the taste.  Breath deeply and slowly when you write an email.  Enjoy the ‘ride’ and journey of getting somewhere. Life is not a race.  Enjoy it and be in the moment – yes, even when you are doing the dishes or folding your washing, there are joys in these little things, it just takes a different attitude to see and appreciate them.  Do things with love.  Enjoy the gift that is the present

7. Don’t concern yourself with what others think

The only person you need to impress is yourself

8. Ask yourself

Are you a better person than you were yesterday? Do at least one thing every day that your future self will thank you for

9. Be here, now

Use all of your 5 senses to truly be in the moment.  For example if you are out having coffee/tea take a look around. What is going on around you? (Put your phone away), listen to the soundtrack of where you are (jazz music or energetic chatter), take a moment and really smell that glorious coffee/tea, feel the small expresso cup or gigantic mug in your hands and of course savour the taste.  All too often these things are rushed and we don’t even stop, look around or take in the moment.  These moments create the most memorable memories ;)

10. Mindfulness

Going a few steps further from what I have said above – check out ‘5 tips to bring mindfulness into your everyday life’ here

11. Do those things that niggle at the back of your mind

Like tidying out a kitchen cupboard that is over stacked and annoys you, edit your closet, back up your photos, organise your music files etc.  Believe me if you do that one thing that niggles at the back of your mind you are giving yourself something you cannot buy = freedom and the sense of accomplishment

12. Be accountable for your health and make good choices that feel right for you

Ultimately no one is responsible for your health apart from you.  You are the one who chooses what to eat, whether to exercise or sport, what to put in / on your body, how much stress you put on yourself, whether to see a Dr or specialist and what attitude & mindset to have.  Knowledge is Power.  Trust your instincts.  I have made a promise to my body and mind that I will do all in my power to keep it healthy and cancer free and make confident decisions

13. Do not take life for granted

Once you are faced with the possibility of The End, you quickly learn how to appreciate the little things and the here and now.  Life is precious

14. Help people

Whether it is helping a person pack / carry their shopping, participating in charity, sharing your knowledge or being a ‘listening ear’ for someone, these are the things that make us a better person

15. Be about it 

Definition here

16. You do not have to finish everything immediately

A good friend brought this to my attention as she noticed that I try and get things done (and finished) sooner rather than later, even though they are tasks that don’t need to be finished quickly.  So slow down, appreciate what you are doing and have pleasure in the task at hand.  Don’t rush through things, take your time and enjoy

17. Have fun and find fun

Having fun is essential – what is life if you cannot smile and savour fun activities, moments and things?  So do what makes you happy.  Doing something that you find challenging or mundane? Find the fun in it!  It really does change things around

18. Take a moment to truly see what is happening around you

Too often there are distractions – but just look up and see what’s happening.  It may be people in the train, the kids breakdancing in the house, your significant other doing something funny, nature or beautiful architectural designs in the streets, whatever.  Just check it out.  You may pass a certain house or building every day, but have you really looked at it?  You spend time with your kids and loved ones, but have you taken a moment just to see what they do when they think you aren’t looking?  These are the moments you may miss or not think twice about but they can be the most precious times

19. Make a decision

Be happy with your decision(s).  Feel confident in what you decide on and most important of all JUST MAKE A DECISION.  Too often we don’t make a decision, and I don’t know about you but the time spent deciding on something usually costs a lot of energy.  So be bold, weigh up your options and just make a decision – you will feel a whole lot better after!  AND you can move on. What a wonderful feeling that is

20. Do what you feel like doing

Feel like being arty?  Then paint or pick up that pen and sketch pad.  Feel like dancing in your living room?  Turn your fav tune up loud and do it.  Feel like speaking with a friend? Call them!  Feel like making soup / a cake?  Do it!  Feel like hoovering or rearrange things?  Do it!  SEIZE those moments.  Those are moments of productivity and creativity, so Just Do It… you will thank yourself later

21. Time does heal and things will change

As cliche as it sounds time does heal.  In some cases it doesn’t take the sadness / hurt / pain away completely but it certainly helps.  So have faith that things will (and do) change.  You are NOT stuck in this moment right now forever.  Circumstances change, energy changes and most importantly you will change – your feelings, your outlook and your emotions.  Just keep the faith (as Bon Jovi sang) and have hope

22. All you need is a little change of heart / Love Will Save the Day

In all honesty I have never really been big on listening to specific song for their lyrics (I’ve always been more interested in the music and vibe than the words) but this one does it for me, especially through those roller coaster months.  Whitney sings (and says) it best… so if you need a little uplifting, or just want a little 80’s Awesomeness click here:

Every day is a gift.

Make it count and count your blessings :)

#seizetheday


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Friday Five: 5 FAQ’s (Frequently Asked Questions)…

5 Frequently Asked Questions (getfoxfit)

1. Do you live in the gym? 

The biggest misconception, but one that I fully understand as most of my social media updates and photos (via Instagram, facebook and twitter) are gym related, so I can imagine it looks like I live there haha.

The reality is: I am in the gym for 45 mins – 1.5 hours max, and I train 4-5 times a week.

 

2. You must not eat that much? What do you eat?  

I’m a big eater let me tell you, but what I’ve learned is portion control.  Last year I ate healthily BUT just too much of everything.  I ate the same as my 98kg bodybuilding husband, sometimes more than him in all honesty.

Since last August I chose to follow a hybrid of a vegan and macrobiotic diet – no eggs, no diary, no meat.  I eat clean and make everything from scratch.

If you are interested in eating clean, check out: How to Start Eating Clean – Tips and Essentials.  And 5 Clean Eating Swaps you can easily make.

A bodybuilder who doesn’t eat meat, eggs or dairy may seem quite funny when you consider an average bodybuilding diet.  So what does this No Meat Athlete eat exactly?

  • Protein: White fish (cod, haddock, whiting, tilapia, pangasius) and Hemp Protein powder, like GOOD and TerraSana (after trainings).  I also get some protein through vegetables
  • Carbs: Gluten free oatmeal, sweet potato, rye bread and rice crackers
  • Fats:  Nut butter, flax seeds, cashews, almonds and walnuts
  • Veggies: LOADS but my fav’s are: asparagus, courgette, broccoli, spinach, kale, red peppers, plum tomatoes and celery

 

3. How do you deal with cravings or hunger?

Check out my 5 tips here.

 

4. How do you stay so motivated and driven? 

My biggest motivator was, and still is, cancer.  I was ‘kind of’ (rather semi) motivated before but not to the point that I have become after hearing about the Big C.

I nearly lost my life so want to make damn sure that I am the healthiest version of myself and be around for a long long time.

Cancer left me with one kidney, so I need to make sure I keep it as healthy as can be (meaning more water, less salt, watching specific proteins etc.)  I wrote more about this here: What are you training for?  LIFE!

So basically I use this ‘health challenge’  as an opportunity to fuel my food choices and trainings.

 

5. What are your top tips to get and remain fit and healthy?

  • Be consistent.  Big changes will not happen over night, but with every choice you make (fitness and food wise) you are constantly bringing about changes.  Slow and low is the way to go!  Keep the faith and keep going
  • Adopt an athletic mentality – whatever your goal is think and train like an athlete
  • Lift heavy and challenge yourself.  You are MUCH stronger (mentally and physically) that you think.  Don’t be afraid to lift heavy ladies!
  • Find a way to incorporate health and fitness into your lifestyle.  You want it to be sustainable for the long term, indefinite actually… not just a “diet” or fitness schedule you follow for a few weeks
  • Create short and long term goals.  Check out: 5 Steps to Create a Solid Health & Fitness Goal
  • Need more fitness tips?  Check out: Top 5 Fitness Tips
  • For more nutrition tips, click here

 

6. (BONUS) What did you do exactly to change your lifestyle?

In a nutshell:

  • I changed my eating habits and attitudes to food
  • I made a decision to make fitness, healthy eating and working out / exercising part of my daily habit
  • I made goals (short and long term)
  • I kept (and keep) it interesting by reading more, learning more, seeing what others are doing (through Instagram etc.), I try out new ways of exercising and make healthy living a main part of our family life

Ain’t nothing to it but to do it!