On today’s “I Did It” Series episode, my guest, January Rizzo, and I discuss some of the beliefs people are taught at a young age that they hold through their lifetime. You’ll hear how January released some of those beliefs, and how it’s brought her to the mindset she’s in today. I’m so excited for today’s episode, so let’s jump right in!
Find show notes at bicepsafterbabies.com/209
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- Why don’t we have willpower around food (8:43, 9:04, 9:30)
- Progress not perfection (9:51)
- Being healthy is more important than looking good (13:06)
- Give yourself grace (16:16)
- Small and simple things make big changes over time (17:32)
- If you want something different, you have to do something different (20:23)
You're listening to Biceps After Babies Radio episode number 209.
Hello and welcome to Biceps After Babies Radio. A podcast for ladies who know that fitness is about so much more than pounds lost or PRs. It's about feeling confident in your skin and empowered in your life. I'm your host, Amber Brueseke, a registered nurse, personal trainer, wife, and mom of four. Each week, my guests and I will excite and motivate you to take action in your own personal fitness as we talk about nutrition, exercise mindset, personal development, and executing life with conscious intention. If your goal is to look, feel, and be strong and experience transformation from the inside out, you, my friend are in the right place. Thank you for tuning in, now let’s jump into today’s episode.
Amber B 0:47
Hey, hey, hey, welcome back to another episode of Biceps After Babies Radio, I am so glad you're here. I'm so glad you're here and you're going to hear the story of January Rizzo. And she tells a very common story when she was younger, learning some things, developing some beliefs about what her body needed to look like to be able to get praise and approval from other people. And the lengths that she had to go to at that young age, were beyond healthy, will start with that, beyond healthy. And she recognizes that now and so in this episode, you're going to hear how she has kind of worked through releasing some of these beliefs that less is better, that you should always be cutting out food, like that's the secret to success, that smaller is better, that she needs to please other people with the way that she looks. And I think you're gonna really get a lot out of her episode about releasing some of those beliefs that maybe we grew up with, that people may have told us from a very young age, that aren't actually helping or serving us anymore in our adult lives now. So I'm so excited for you to jump into this episode with January.
Amber B 0:52
I am so excited today that I get to have January on the podcast, how are you doing January?
I am well, thank you.
Amber B 2:12
I am very excited to share you with my audience and for them to hear your story. Because as we were kind of chatting a little bit before we hit record, you have a very common perspective and story about all-or-nothing thinking and how you really have been working at that and working at those perfectionistic tendencies. So the conversation we're gonna have today is gonna be really relevant to so many people. So thanks for being here today.
Oh, I appreciate you having me.
Amber B 2:39
Okay, so first of all, tell us a little bit about you. Tell us a little bit about you. What makes you unique? What are you doing in life right now? Just give us a little background.
Yeah, so I am a mama of two teenage boys. I stay home with them. I have been blogging full time for I think it's been 10 years now. So-
Amber B 3:01
So you're like an OG like back when…
The game is definitely changed?
Amber B 3:06
For sure. I'm sure.
Yes. So that's been a thing on its own there. You gotta roll with the changes. So but yeah, so I've been doing blogging for you know, 10 years. I started as kind of fashion and now it's more lifestyle. I love health and fitness. So I love incorporating that kind of content. So, yeah, that's what I do.
Amber B 3:28
Okay, cool. So how did you find me? How did you find my content? And, you know, what were you struggling with? What were like kind of some of your biggest struggles as you kind of stumbled upon me so upon the content?
Okay. So I'm pretty sure I found you on Facebook, you popped up on one of my Facebook, just one of the ads.
Amber B 3:49
And I had been kind of looking into the whole macros thing and trying to figure it out. Like I had come out from intermittent fasting and I did that for a long, long time. But then it just, you know, it just became a little more than I was, I felt like I was focused too much on what I was gonna eat, what it wasn't gonna eat, when we were going to eat that stuff. So, then I found you on Facebook, and…
Amber B 4:20
Awesome. Okay, so I have a question about that, though. Will you tell us a little bit about because you came from a history of intermittent fasting, then you also told me before carb cycling, so will you talk to me a little bit about what appealed to those methods, you know, initially for you, and then kind of what happened over time of using those methods where it maybe stopped working as well for you?
Okay, intermittent fasting?
Amber B 4:44
Yeah, and or carb before cycling too.
Okay. Yeah, so like you saying that makes me think. I feel like as a teenager, when I needed to lose weight or wanted to lose weight, my sure thing to do was just cut it, cut everything out. It was how low can we go, you know. 600 calories a day, you know. And it would get me what I wanted, you know temporarily-
Amber B 5:16
That, gosh, I'm glad you put the temporarily there because that's what it is – temporary.
Oh is a definite yo-yo, you know? You so yeah, so I've just always done it that way. I've always, if I needed to cut any weight, which now we know, we're trying to cut fat, right? So–
Amber B 5:35
You're such a good student.
I try and listen. So yeah, I just would stop and I wouldn't eat. So I would restrict, restrict, restrict. And I felt like, I think what attracted me to intermittent fasting originally was kind of that, Okay, we're not going to eat. And that for whatever reason, it's I don't know if I feel like I don't deserve to eat or something. But for whatever reason, that just, I didn't have to worry about what the food going in like, it was just done. You know, there was no, we don't eat it this time. And yeah.
Amber B 6:14
I think intermittent fasting does really appeal to those people who are just like, I just want something like the easiest as possible. Where it's like, I don't want to think about it, just like I don't eat during this window. That's like a super easy rule. And for some people, they find that really hard, like, some personalities find that hard to not eat. And there are other personalities, which I think you probably would fit into more of this personality of a more of a type A more of someone who's like, No, I said, I'm not gonna eat, so I'm not going to eat. And that's not as hard for you to like, pull that line as it is for some other people. And so it can really appeal to that idea of like, oh, well, I just can't eat during these windows and I can eat during the other windows like great, that's easy.
It is good for like for me in that way. But then when I mess up one day, then I'm just beating myself up the whole rest of the day.
Amber B 7:08
Okay, good. I mean, January, you have so much great insight on this. And I can already like see how far you've come in your thinking. Because you're like, Yeah, on this one side, it seemed like it was really alluring. Like, it was really easy. Like it worked really well. That's always been my way of doing it. But then there's this dark side to it. And the dark side is what you started to mention is like just be your personality is one that, yes, if you kind of gravitate towards that, like simple solution, I can hold the line, I can do it. But then those moments that you couldn't, then it was like a beat yourself up.
Yeah, absolutely. You know, when you're not eating until one o'clock in the day, and you're starving by the time one gets there. And you have a day where you just gorge,
Amber B 7:48
Yeah, everything's in your mouth.
It's just guilt, you know, feeling like a failure all over again.
Amber B 7:53
Yeah, so good. Because I think it's so interesting. I talked about this a lot of how, as women, especially, I feel like we blame ourselves. And maybe you can relate to this dialog. And maybe this was a similar dialogue you had in your head where it's like, I'm not supposed to eat until this time period. And then when that time period came, you were starving. And so then, self-control and willpower and motivation, all those things kind of went out the window, because like your body was hungry. And so then you ate all these things. And then you're like, Well, why can't I just stick to it better? Why do I suck at this? Like, why can I just do better when in reality, we can look at it and be like, well, actually, like your body was doing just what it was supposed to do? Why? Like, why did we think this was a good idea to starve ourselves? And then wonder why we don't have any willpower around food. It's like, well, it's not that you're the problem. It's kind of the fact that you were starving yourself and that's your body's natural reaction to from the start..
Right. And I think what I've learned since doing, you know, MACROS 101 is that, yes, initially it was hard to do intermittent fasting. I think probably because my metabolism was higher. And then the longer I went with restricting, restricting-
Amber B 9:04
– My metabolism just plummeted, and I really wasn't hungry. So I've been on this journey of trying to get it back up again. You know, I know I've been in this room. So I want to reverse. I've been in reverse for like a year now. Because I'm, like, I get nervous about adding calories. It's hard for me. I don't know why it's hard, but it's hard.
Amber B 9:30
You know why it's hard? Because you've been told for so long that that's the opposite of what you should do. Like you grew up with this idea that like, you should eat less, you should eat less, like less is always the answer. So now you're having to like retrain your brain and your understanding and everything that you used to think was true. And having to retrain it like that's hard. It's hard to retrain your brain.
Yeah, no, absolutely. That has gotten a little easier and I've kind of come to the– I'm such a black or white, like all or nothing. It's black. It's white. We do this, we do that. And so what I've tried to do in the last year and a half is kind of come to a “progress, not perfection”. It's okay. You know, like that, that there's another way to do it. Like, you know, if you want that, whatever it is that I want to eat, okay, but then, you know, switch something else in the rest of the day so that it accommodates a macro situation. So it has gotten better when, if it wasn't for what I do, which is take, it's just part of my job, taking photos of myself, I have a photographer to take photos of me twice a month. So I'm constantly looking at myself. And that's a struggle and sometimes I do wonder if that wasn't part of my life, would I be as fanatical about it? And I guess I wouldn't, but it is what it is. And I think that when it gets better I feel like for a while, it was hard to look at the pictures when I was increasing the calories. Because while probably anybody else may not notice much for me, it was just like, “Oh, you're getting bigger, you're getting bigger.” And my husband be like, it's so much better. No, you've gained muscle, you know, you're not like stick skinny anymore. So I don't know, I think it's a perspective switch for me. And it's just about, you know, coming to a weight that I'm comfortable with and it's healthy.
Amber B 10:39
I'm curious. Because I do think that we are, you know, we look at our own pictures way more than anybody else looks at our pictures. And we obviously often criticize ourselves more than you know, other people even notice. I'm curious, have you had people notice, or is this something that has been mostly just you notice because we are the ones in our bodies and like looking?
Oh, I'm sure it's just me.
Amber B 11:56
Yeah, isn’t that so funny? I just find it so fascinating. Because we all do this to some extent. We're like, oh, my gosh, they're totally gonna notice that like, I gained five pounds… or whatever my butt's getting bigger.
What is my problem is what is so wrong with that? To me that feels it feels like a knock against me. I'm like, so what, Jan, what if they think you gained five pounds? Does that mean you're not good anymore? And for me, that's what I hear. I hear you're not good if you gain that weight. If you're not looking this way. Because, gosh, I love people. And everyone means well, but when you're there are times when I was eating 600 calories a day and I would get constant, you know, you look so great. What are you doing? I ain't eating, you know, I am not eating enough. And I hate it because it is hard when you finally do come around to trying to get back to a healthy weight it's hard because you feel like you're letting them down like, you know, it's silly.
Amber B 13:06
Well, I think that's why I think and you know, you're bringing up like such good things to think about is that, you know, you ask why is this so hard? Why is it so hard to retrain it and because from a very young age, you were told one thing, and it was reinforced by people praising you and telling you you looked great and doing this good job, and that reinforcement that like praise and telling you that like this is idealized, got in your head like, well, I guess like this is what I need to look like. And this is the way that I need to do it. And when you came to this realization that that wasn't super healthy, and it wasn't effective, and it wasn't going to be long term, and you needed to do something different, then sometimes that praise does go away. And sometimes that external reinforcement does go away. And this is the moment where we can decide what's more important to me what other people think about me or what I think about myself, what other people are saying under their breath, or thinking about the way that I look or the way that I feel and the way that I am able to do life, you know, and go through life in the body that I'm in and I think that can be really hard. And if it sounds like you're walking through that, right you're you have so much progress you've made to walk through that and decide that Hey, me being healthy, me actually eating food is more important than somebody looking at me and saying, Hey, you look really good today.
Yeah, I know and I think again, just with what I do, I you know, it's just one of those traps. You know, it's like, why don't people say look cute anymore? You know what I mean? But it just doesn't matter and it's silly and coming to and I think part of it is a need for that affirmation, and oh my goodness, it's crippling. Like my whole life, I feel like, you know, when I lost a bunch of weight when I was a teenager, and people noticed you like, oh, okay, so this is what I'm supposed to look like, this is what I need to look like, you know, but I think it did it kind of put this thing in my mind that if I don't if I'm not looking, or at this weight, then I'm just not “good”, you know?
Amber B 15:23
So January, there's somebody who's listening to this, who's having an “aha” moment in their mind, resonating with what you're saying about, you know, people thinking things about them, about it meaning something about them, that they're not good enough, that they're not worthy enough that, you know, they're seeking for that external validation. And they're having this “aha” moment, right now, what would you say, is something that you would say to that person of how you are walking this journey from the upbringing that you had, the reinforcement of a certain body type that you had, to the place that you are today, where maybe you're not, maybe we wouldn't call it “done”, but you are on that path towards caring more what you think about yourself than what other people think about you. What would you say to that person who is just kind of beginning that path?
You know, I think it's just like, give yourself grace, you know. I feel like, some days I do better at it than others. I think that just starting small, and just making baby step progress, for me, is what helps me, you know, just small things every day. And I just, I really have to sit down sometimes and think, you know, it just doesn't matter what people think, like, it just doesn't matter. And my worth needs to not be and whether, you know, so and so thinks I look good today, or I don't, you know, but I think it's just recognizing it. I think the first step is that you even notice it about yourself, because I didn't notice it for many years. It's just how I operated and didn't think twice about it. But I think just being mindful of it has helped me I'm like, oh, no, you have in that moment where you're feeling like, you know, you have to be this for people, and you need to be this for you. You know, so I think just small steps every day. I know, that's not very insightful, I guess. But-,
Amber B 17:32
But it is. It is those like it is those, What do we say, they are simple, but that doesn't make them easy, right? It is a simple thing to say. And not always an easy thing to implement. But what you found is that as you have implemented that it does, like small and simple things change. It makes big changes over time. And we just got to start with that small stuff.
Absolutely. Absolutely. I mean, I think just kind of really is kind of retraining the things you always saw about yourself or thought about yourself. So that's how it is for me anyway. So and it is a journey, it is a daily struggle, sometimes some days I wake up, and it's hard. It's hard for me to do it. And then, but I know it's the healthy place that I need to be.
Amber B 18:25
Yeah, yeah, that's really, really good. So is there one, or a couple of moments where you've had some “aha” moments where they've been like, changing the way that you see yourself or changing the way you look at food or changing the way you interact with the world, you know, as you went through MACROS 101, as you've gone through coaching, are there any of those moments that kind of stand out to you?
Oh, my goodness, well, I mean, I love learning new things. And I've always had an interest in fitness and how these people, become and get their bodies in these, you know, in the shape that they do in the gym and stuff. And so just earning that through macros, just learning about “reverses” and you know, all the different things, the “cut”, I didn't know what that meant. I only knew how to cut calories. And that was a big moment for me. I know that that may sound… but I just remember not knowing any of that. Like I couldn't figure out how they would, you know, cut, add, bulk, all that stuff. And so for me, those are big moments for me. I had a lot of “aha” moments during MACROS 101 in that way.
Amber B 19:54
Awesome. That's so good. All right. Well, thank you so much for sharing your story January. You're awesome. The last thing just to kind of wrap it up, if there was somebody who maybe felt like they were like, you know the story January's health of like her upbringing and where she was struggling, that's me. Like, that's me right now. And we already talked about like small and simple things. But is there one piece of advice that you would tell that person who may be listening?
You know, I just say, if you want something different, you have to do something different. For me, that's kind of always my motto. So, and I'm big on if it doesn't challenge you, it doesn't change you. I got that all little sayings that I tell myself, you know, that really if you want something different, you have to be willing to dig and do something different. And I just, I had such a great experience and still with MACROS 101. I still go back through the program and re-listen to some of the modules because there are lots of times when I need reminders about things that we’ve gone over.
Amber B 20:59
We all do.
Yeah, you just start it. Because it has really changed the way I do my days now. So. It's nice just not to be so focused on, “What am I going to eat? What am I not going to eat?” Like it's really nice in that way.
Amber B 21:20
So great. That's awesome. Okay, January if people are like I want to follow January. I want to see her lifestyle stuff. I want to see her fitness stuff. I want to see her cute pictures. Where can they find you?
Yes, I am January Hart Rizzo on Instagram and I have a blog. It's Januaryhart.com.
Amber B 21:36
And it's Hart, H-A-R-T, right? Awesome. Thank you so much for being here today, January.
Thank you very much.
Amber B 21:46
Thanks for listening to this episode. If you enjoyed it, please share it with a friend. Or leave a review and a rating on iTunes that really does help the podcast to get found by more people. It helps iTunes to know that hey, people like this podcast, we should push it out to more people. So if you've taken the time to leave a rating and review, thank you from the bottom of my heart. That wraps up this episode of Biceps After Babies Radio. I'm Amber, now go out and be strong because remember my friend you can do anything.
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