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Ep 160

Creating her own future – With Linda Steele

Linda: [00:00:00] I was too embarrassed to tell people what was really going on in my household Nobody really knew. None of my insiders knew

Carling: Welcome to the, I did not Sign Up for this podcast, a weekly show dedicated to highlighting the incredible stories of everyday people. No topic is off limits. Join me as we explore the lives and experiences of guests through thought-provoking, unscripted conversations. I’m your host Carling, a Canadian queer identifying 30 something year old, providing a platform for the stories that need to be heard

hello Linda.

Linda: Hi Carling.

How are

Carling: good. How are you?

Linda: Great. Thanks for having


Carling: my gosh. Thank you so much for joining. I’ve been so excited to talk to you. I would love it if you introduce yourself, and then we’ll get into your story.

Linda: Absolutely. So my name is Linda Steele, s t e l e, and I’m from Chicago. I have been a personal trainer and wellbeing advisor for almost two decades. I started when I was at a strange part [00:01:00] in my life. I was going through a divorce I knew that somebody was gonna see me naked one day, and I knew I had shape and so I hired a trainer and then a, within a year I became a personal trainer.

I went ahead and made sure that I was. I studied and I certified and qualified and went on to be a personal trainer. So that’s how my career started. I’ve received a number of different qualifications and certifications since, which includes expert in nutrition, expert in senior fitness training, I’ve been dealing with. Clients for all these years, and every hour I get a new personality and I have a new person on my schedule, constantly. And so with that type of training, I have all types of personal situations that go on every hour with my clients.

Sometimes they walk in, in a really good mood. Sometimes they’re in a bad mood, sometimes they’re sad. You never know what’s gonna walk in the door. So I’ve been, I’ve equipped to handle almost anything and that’s what. Brought [00:02:00] me to my next endeavor, which was writing a book.

Carling: That’s amazing. Yeah. I think personal training is one of those careers that you end up being like a therapist because that’s where people go and they just, they’re vulnerable and you just let it all out.

Linda: Yeah, and I see a lot of my clients two to three hours a week, and so technically I spend more time with them than I do my own mother and some of my best friends. So I get to know them really well. And there have been plenty of times a client has walked in the door and we’ve not lifted one weight.

They’ll sit down on the bench next to me and we sit and chit chat the whole time because they’re just having a bad day. You’re just not up to it. So we find up, solving the world’s problems in one hour. And it’s and, you never know what’s gonna come. But every client that I’ve had I’ve gotten just as much out of the hours with them as they have from me.

Carling: Wow. And so I wanna get into what, you wrote a book. Did you write a book specifically through your journey of personal training or I guess what led up to. the moment that you decided to change your life and get a personal [00:03:00] trainer yourself, yeah. Where does your story.

Linda: In my book, my story begins when I’m a little girl, actually. But I will tell you this, as far as what made me wanna write the book, I’ll get to that question first. Was, everybody has a story as you know very well from your podcast, and which is one of the greatest things about your podcast, is you let everybody tell their story, and everybody’s story is so unique, but what’s great about every person that you’ve had on, or any, at least the people I’ve listened to, is I could draw a parallel with almost every person you’ve had on, and none of us have had very similar lives, but there’s something about it that’s very unique and very similar at the same time.

I just thought after all these years of dealing with my clients and they come to me for issues and problems, I thought now is a good time to get my story on paper, to show them where I come up with this advice. What I did, what worked for me, where I came from, where I am today.

And I just thought it was going to be a really good time to share my story with, not just my clients, but everybody else out in.

Carling: Yeah. That’s huge. [00:04:00] And so what was, maybe if you can give don’t obviously divulge your whole book, but what was life like for you? Going as far back as you want, leading up to that moment of deciding to share.

Linda: Sure. So my parents divorced when I was two years old. Now a lot of people have that story and I am. by any means, going to blame my parents’ divorce for, anything that went on my life. I, as a matter of fact, I think that I’m grateful that they divorced when I was so young instead of when I was, a little bit older and already established in family traditions and this and that.

I don’t recall any traditions prior to it, so it actually was great timing for me. I knew that certain things were with my dad and certain things were with my mom and everything was great. But what happened was, I was about nine years old. I had a falling out with my stepfather and he made sure that I was miserable as often as he possibly could for, you know, until. 17 years old and finally got the hell outta my house. And again, my story in my book is [00:05:00] not nearly as detrimental as some kids’ stories. Some kids are abused, in, in a much worse way. And so I’m not even going to claim that I had the worst life ever.

All I’m claiming in my book is I had a difficult childhood and I made a plan to get out of my house at a very early age, and I made sure that I was, that I followed through on it because I learned pretty early that we do have more control over our lives than we think we do.

We have boundaries as kids because we know right from wrong. We know what feels right, we know what feels wrong, but we can’t count on adults to respect those boundaries. So as we grew older, we just become conditioned to people. disrespecting our boundaries and disrespecting us. And sometimes we never find a voice to, finally put our foot down.

But eventually some of us find a voice at all different stages of our lives, and we finally put our foot down and say, no more. You’re not gonna treat me that way. Unfortunately, that often requires us to say goodbye to people that we

Carling: Mm-hmm.[00:06:00]

Linda: And it’s unfortunate because. When people say why do you let him treat you that way?

Why don’t you just leave? You can’t make somebody treat you the way you wanna be treated. You can set boundaries for them we just rely on people to be good people. And if they’re not and they have repeat, behavior, it’s time that we get out. And so what I talk about, In my book, besides my childhood, how my behavior then and my actions and reactions bled into my adult relationships.

And I found myself in a couple situations that I had to try to get myself out of again. And it’s just crazy how history repeats itself and how your childhood trauma bleeds into your adult relat.

Carling: It’s so scary. I can look back. Hindsight’s always 2020, I can look back and see parallels between, how my childhood was and what I ended up putting up with in relationships in my early adult life. And now is like I’m a stepparent. [00:07:00] I have two stepkids and I’m just forever so aware.

What they witness and how they’re treated and their experiences like in this home are going to affect their future relationships. It’s a lot.

Linda: And thank God that you’re smart enough to do that because a lot of people, they don’t take a look within. They don’t look at things like that. They just live right here and now. And they don’t think of how their actions or reactions are going to affect others in the home.

And when they grow up, and as a stepparent, it’s difficult. The man that I’m dating right now, he has two children they don’t live in the same state as he does. So I don’t see that all the time. So when I do see them, it’s wee, everything’s great, cuz we don’t, you know, it’s quality time, it’s great, but when you have to live with somebody on the regular, Boy, that’s difficult.

, you may have some closed door discussions that’s not how I would’ve handled that. Or, and then it causes some friction

Carling: Yeah. And did you maintain a relationship with your mom and stepdad or just your.

Linda: So I re retained [00:08:00] a relationship with my mother throughout the entire, situation. And as I became older, I started to realize that she felt very stuck. And didn’t know how to get out of the situation that she was in because she didn’t have a plan like I did. Because in my adult relationships, I made a plan and I followed through with them.

She didn’t have a plan and she didn’t have the resources that I did. I had a college education because I made mys. I went back to school to get it. She did not have that. So she knew her income level was going to be, a lot smaller than my potential. She wasn’t willing to make the changes that I was willing to, if I had to live in an apartment with my kids, that’s what I was willing to do once I, my, my divorce she was not willing to do that.

She liked the lifestyle. She wanted to make sure I had a decent lifestyle. She put the other stuff aside and said, but look at these great things we have. So she made a choice, and that was her choice. And again, as I’m, as I grew, I understood her choices, but at the time, I didn’t. But I still remain, we remain close. I don’t talk about it in my book, but later in [00:09:00] life, my stepfather and I actually became close again,


Carling: wow. Okay. That’s

Linda: yeah. And yeah, in the strangest way. The story wound up with a happy ending, but the trauma never left.

Carling: Yeah.

Linda: Even though we got along, there were days that I was like I just thought about him and I could scream, even though we were back on friendly terms I have a good weekend with them and I, on a Monday morning I wake up and I think, my god, you son of a bitch.

How dare you have treated

Carling: Yeah.

Linda: and so as far as forgiveness, I don’t know. I’m not a very good forgiver I guess cause it’s seems to be there.

Carling: Yeah, I know it’s one of those things that, yeah, once you hold onto it, you can sometimes pretend it’s not there, but it finds its way back, I think.

Linda: Sure does.

Carling: did that sort of impact your relationship going into having a husband and kids?

Linda: Yes. So the man I married wound up being somewhat similar to. [00:10:00] My stepfather

and by the way, I had a real dad who was amazing, like, why couldn’t I pick a guy like

him? That’s what

Carling: And did you grow up seeing him a lot? Did you have access to him? Yeah.

Linda: All time. I had the greatest weekends with my dad. It was the five days in between that were brutal, but the three days, the, those two days on the weekend were amazing. With my dad, he didn’t really know everything that was going on. I didn’t wanna divulge at all because I didn’t wanna start any more trouble at home.

But The two days that I was with him were just fantastic. I wouldn’t have had it any other way. So I had that and, again, I think it all goes back to the stuff that we endure. We’re literally, when we’re little, I found myself in this, like always trying to get acceptance and approval and, I wound up with that kind of.

, I wanted him to wanna be with me , and it just never seemed to happen. , I would work harder and harder to try to be that and to make that happen. And it just, it’s just crazy the things that we repeat that, [00:11:00] we were constantly trying to feed something that wasn’t fed back in the.

When I finally realized that I had to get out of that marriage, that took a five year plan because I had, cuz I had to get my little one in kindergarten and I had to finish my college degree and I had, that was a five year plan when, I guess the whole premise of my book is when you think that your life is so tough and oh my gosh, you feel stuck and what am I gonna do?

There’s always a way out. But you have to get a plan and you have to get a good support. And you have to count on people to, cuz there’s always people who wanna help you. The problem is us. We don’t want help, we’re embarrassed to ask for it. Or we could think we could do whatever the case may be. So it’s usually us, we’re our worst enemies.

But if we can gather our support group and get good people on our side, we can make the changes that we wanna make in order to make ourselves happy. We’re the only ones in charge of us.

Carling: What was the catalyst for you deciding, okay, I need to make a five [00:12:00] year plan.

Linda: There was there was a tapping on the cake. I guess I’d wanna call it. My husband at the time, he wasn’t home very often. He wasn’t around for the kids and he worked hard. Don’t get me wrong, he worked hard and allowed me to stay home and be a stay-at-home mom. I did work as well, from home.

But, so he worked hard, but he had that work hard, play hard

mentality so it was when my kids started picking up on his behav. And that’s what did it. I was like, wow, my kids are starting to really understand what is going on here. It is my job to let them know that this is

Carling: Yeah.

Linda: and out.

It was, I felt like I owed it to them because again, so many moms and dads stay in marriages, bad marriages for the.

Carling: Yeah.

Linda: Realize that it’s really hurting them, and you could really have an opportunity to teach them a really great lesson by moving on and leaving a [00:13:00] toxic situation. But we forget that. We just think, ah, the kids don’t want us to get divorced.

We don’t look, it’s so hard to look long term.

Carling: Yeah. I always think what a beautiful act showing your kids. Healthy relationships can look like, and sometimes that means ending the relationship and changing the dynamic. I think ultimately that sets up kids for better standards for themselves. I hope.

Linda: I hope so too. And again it lets the kids see where. Started and where you wound up and they get to see because it’s scary. It’s not an easy transition. Nobody is gonna tell you it’s easy and nobody’s gonna tell you. It happens overnight. It’s hell sometimes going through and you’re gonna hit something off the roads and make some, have to make some changes.

But when the kids, if they see what’s going on, and they might not realize it at the time, but looking back, I wasn’t sure if my kids were gonna love me or hate me and look. And now looking back, they. Why I did what I did and when and what it took. And they [00:14:00] realize that I had to, go some pretty through, some pretty tough times and they did too.

But, all I can tell you, everyone who’s listening is, no matter how bad it seems, it’s gonna be worth it to get to the other end.

Carling: Yeah. And so you say, part of that five year plan was creating community or supports. Who was that for you? How did you tell people what you were gonna do?

Linda: , but I was able to, once I went to get myself in shape because when I started eating clean and I started working out and all of a sudden my head started thinking

clearly and I started making friends with people outside of my group and I saw how real.

Relationships worked and I realized and I was able to really say, okay, mine is wrong. There’s our right

Carling: Yeah.

Linda: or at least theirs look healthy and mine don’t. So I was able to really decide what was right and wrong. I was able to get [00:15:00] the support from, like I said, outsiders, cuz I was too embarrassed to tell people on the inside what was really going on.

And. I was able to have somebody help with my career so that I was able to build a, build the education for myself to start this new career that I had so that I could go out into the world and make a living off of it, off of the personal training. And so there were a handful of people, handful of my support group, but they were all outsiders.

When my family found out I was getting divorced, they were shocked,

friends and family shocked.

it wasn’t until. Me trying to defend myself that I actually told them what was going on and they were like, oh, geez, we had no idea. And let me say, since I was able to say something nice about my stepfather, my I’ll have to say something nice about my ex-husband as well.

We are actually friendly now together as well. We have, yeah. We have kids together. He realizes his behavior was wrong, even I realized that I probably didn’t make his life so easy. And we were very young when we were married and I realized that we didn’t [00:16:00] have the. That we needed in order to be a mom and dad at age 24.

yeah, and so I’m, I don’t wanna make excuses for him because, sorry, put your big boy pants on. You’re a dad and you gotta changes. But at the same time, when you’re not mentally, you’re emotionally ready. You’re not, I, there’s nothing you could do about,

Carling: Yeah. Divorce doesn’t have to be only one person did one horrible thing. I think I don’t love Dr. Phil, but he says to every pancake has two sides, and I think it does. It’s so mature to look at a relationship and say this isn’t healthy for anybody and it needs to change.

. So I’m curious, before you got your personal trainer, what was your mindset, your health, all of that. And then can you talk a little bit about your experience deciding to get a personal trainer and what that first bit was like?

Linda: Yes. Yeah, those, that was a really uh, turning point in my life. So prior to the personal trainer, I was always. Conscientious of my health. When I started to [00:17:00] go to college, I took uh, nutrition classes and so forth. I was always fit in a way where I was active, I should say. I was active in high school.

I was active, after high school I worked out what I thought was working out. Now that I know it, it really entails. I was dabbling back

Carling: Yeah.

Linda: I had roller blade.

I, you know, I kept myself that that’s what my life was like prior to getting pregnant, and then I got pregnant and it became all about my kids.

I was barely even eating when I had kids because I didn’t have time. It was all about, I started out with twins right off the bat So I was busy and I didn’t have a lot of help. I had a mom and I had a mother-in-law, and they helped when they could, but it was very difficult. My, my husband, like I said, was never home.

And so I was busy running. And even when my kids were old enough to eat, real food, the what I would eat, not even kidding, you were the crust off of their peanut butter and jelly sandwiches and whatever leftover pancakes or french toast was on their plate in the morning before

Carling: Yeah. Like why do moms do that? That’s such a mom thing. My sister [00:18:00] does it

Linda: Yes, it’s such a mo For some reason, we don’t take time for ourselves. And I did a speaking event one one time at the best You, you’ll find it on my YouTube and I actually do a 45 minute talk on that. I really discuss how you are not nearly as valuable to your family as you think you are unless you’re taking care of yourself.

And as selfish as it might seem, as selfish as you might feel, as selfish as people might say you are, they can all go suck it because you need to take care of yourself first, or you’re nearly as available as you could be. So anyway yeah, I started after. my twins were now two and a half, and I had my third baby.

Then things got even worse. I, now, I’m not sleeping,

now I’m not eating. It was just really bad. I was just mo you know, functioning on adrenaline and whatever else. Moms just do what we have to do. We just do what we, When I realized that, I had to make this plan and I had to follow through and one of the first things was gonna be to to get in shape.

That’s, like I [00:19:00] said, when I started thinking clearly and I hired a trainer not long after that because I realized it was a lot more difficult than I thought it was back then. The internet just. Recently came out, but I’m not so tech savvy, so I wasn’t so great at trying to find people yet on, you information on, on what to do and how to do it.

So I would read magazines and I would pick little parts of each person’s program that I thought I could do. And I tried to make my own program, it didn’t work. I realized I have to hire an expert. If I want expert results, I have to hire an expert. And I gave myself the analogy, if I was going to try to learn how to work my computer, I’m gonna get someone in to teach me how to do it.

I’m certainly not gonna do it myself, cuz I don’t know how, if I’m gonna build a shed in my backyard, I’m not just gonna, b I’m gonna hire someone to do it. I don’t know how to do this. Could I research it? Yes. Do I want to? No. Do I have the time to go? So I have to hire an expert to do what?

To do so I hired and the program that he taught me is the same exec program that I still teach today. It’s almost [00:20:00] 20 years. Yeah. It’s it’s based off the math and the biology of the human body, and that’s the basics. It’s basic resistance training and basic nutrition, and it will work. And every time I, I’m gonna reinvent the wheel and add something to it just, it’s silly.

I stopped doing that about 15 years ago, kept thinking I was gonna make it, tweak it and no it, the basics are the best way to go.

Carling: Yeah. And do you remember your first, workout or the first little bit with a trainer and how it was different?

Linda: Yes. It was completely different because I didn’t do any resistance training myself.

And so he handed me a pair of eight pound dumbbells. And now those of you who lift your, you’ll know that eight pounds is nothing for bicep curls. But to me, I looked at him like he was crazy. and most of it was cuz I wasn’t eating enough to even have the energy to lift them.

So eight pounds to, I thought he was out of his mind crazy to have me even lift these. And I, my first set thing I [00:21:00] said to him was, I don’t wanna look like a guy. I’m not trying to look like a guy. I don’t wanna have too much muscle. And he was rolling his eyes. If you only knew what it took to actually build that much muscle to look like a guy

Carling: That’s

Linda: So nice. Oh my god. Yeah, it was so funny. And even when he had me do my first set of abs, I couldn’t even lift myself up because I didn’t have C-sections, but I had, I forget what it’s called, but it’s when all the muscles in your ado abdominal area, when they

Carling: Oh yeah.

Linda: And I, so I had no control over my muscles and my eyes.

I couldn’t even sit up

Carling: Wow.

Linda: up, I get outta bed every

day. I just roll outta bed, if you get the right trainer, Your trainer is not only going to guide you and correct your form, but they’re gonna educate you. They’re gonna hold you accountable. They’re going to give you a reason. And it’s really, I just love the experience. It’s I wish I had a trainer now, to be honest with I’m the trainer and I don’t have a trainer, and when my boyfriend and I work out together, he, we just do our thing.

And sometimes I let [00:22:00] him tell me like, oh, what are we doing next? I don’t wanna think about it. That’s, Thing to do. Let him pick the workout.

Carling: And so why did you decide to become a personal trainer?

Linda: , it’s actually because, so I went, I knew I was going to have to work again, okay? I was going to be back into the corporate world I went for my first interview and I was dressed really nice, but I, by that time I had a nice body. I had already gotten my boobs done I walked in and my heels and what I thought was a really cute outfit.

Business like. and I got the dirtiest looks from the women in the office as I was walking through to go to the office for my interview. And I was like, oh gosh, it’s so cold here. I w ugh. Then it happened again. Same thing. dirty looks, everyone whispering as I’m walking past their cube to get into the office, to interview.

Even that person who interviewed me was a woman and she was asking me all these questions about what’s gonna happen if your kids are sick one day? Are you gonna be able to make it? What about, yeah, asking me some real, and I was like, I guess I’ll get a babysitter. What do moms

do? This, isn’t this what we [00:23:00] do?

We go. And I didn’t get that job and I went on the third interview and I, again, had a really bad experience and I said, that’s it. I am definitely not cut out for the corporate world. I do not fit in with the people who I’d be working with. What are my other options? I love this training thing.

Do you. . I asked my trainer, do you think I could, I’d be a good trainer. Do you think that I could do this? And he was like, absolutely. These gyms that we’re working out in right now, you already know more than these trainers. You watched the trainers and you asked me, why are they doing that?

And why is their form so bad? And why is, and so you already know a lot more than these trainers.

Carling: Wow.

Linda: do it. I went and I got my certification. I went and I had my first interview. I got my job and within two weeks I had my first client, which is pretty good for a personal trainer, usually it takes about a month, and then within about A year and a half.

I already had a wait list on my schedule because they knew that the the program that I was teaching was what I was using myself. And people were like, oh my gosh, you have to teach me. And I was like, I cannot wait to tell the world how easy this is. It’s not as, as we make [00:24:00] it.

It’s basic weightlifting. It’s basic nutrition. This is so easy. And I wanted to tell every. And they knew. They knew my enthusiasm. So again, wait list on my schedule. And then within a year and a half I became the company that I worked for was a nationwide company. I became their number one female trainer nationwide.

Out of 4,500, I was number one female and I was number two

Carling: amazing.

Linda: And the number one was my trainer.

Carling: wow. . That’s awesome. That’s so amazing. And what kind of clients do you to, do you find that you get, do you have a favorite, not a favorite client, but like a type of client?

Linda: So, And it’s changed, it’s evolved over the years. When I first started, I was younger, so I would attract all of the cute 20, 30 year olds who just wanted to look great in a bikini. Those were my biggest clients at the time. As time went on my schedule became 50 50 male to female, and my average client, my average age client now [00:25:00] is about 50 52, and that’s who I really enjoy working.

I love it. . First of all, I have clients in their, from early eighties down to, 15 years old right now. 12 actually. I love working with all the different ages because they’re so different. But I love clients my age group, because first of all, they work so hard and I’m blown away with because of their hard work and the era of which they grew up.

because they’ve always, they, I’ve got, I have the group that grew up with the key ch the key chain the necklace with the key at the end of it, when they were in kindergarten, first grade. That’s the group that I grew up. Hardworking. They’re just a different type. they have the greatest stories.

They have the, they’re so wise. they’re not afraid of anything. Sometimes I, I. Tell my clients in their thirties, but I always let them know if you could see what you’re doing now versus my clients in their thirties, you would be blown away. And I don’t like to compare them cause it’s not fair to do that.

But it’s, they’re just a different group. [00:26:00] It’s just different.

Carling: Yeah.

Linda: We just have a lot of, a lot in common. I don’t feel like I have to be the mom, what do you mean you were drinking over the weekend? You’re not even 21. That’s gonna ruin all your progress.

Carling: That’s amazing.

Linda: so I enjoy that age group around in the fifties, sixties, seventies.


Carling: I love that. And are those people that have grown up with fitness or are they trying to regain mobility and strength?

Linda: Little bit of both. A lot of them didn’t start training till they were like in their thirties and forties. Some of these clients I’ve had for the last 20 years,

some of these clients were at very first year or two of training.

Carling: That’s amazing.

Linda: It’s so crazy. I’ve trained four generations up there.

I train.

I started with the mom actually. I started with the daughter. Then I started training her mom and then I started training her grandmother and then I started training her son. So four generations. I had her on my schedule when she was pregnant with the son that I trained when he, and he, I trained when I, he was like 15, 16, 16 cuz he was driving [00:27:00] to his sessions.

I grew up with these people. It’s so


Carling: What are some of your biggest pet peeves about misconceptions for people who. Maybe the misconceptions people have about personal training or fitness.

Linda: I would say one of the most people are afraid of personal trainers, and I think it’s because they think that, and not all personal trainers are created equal either. So some people have reason to be I, some I’m. Afraid of some personal trainers I see with some of the things that they have their clients do that they shouldn’t be doing at a certain age.

So I guess one of the misconceptions is that your trainer is, going, doesn’t understand your, or not gonna not going to understand Your abilities but they’re not wrong that, if you get the wrong trainer, you’re right. If you get a trainer, if you’re 50 years old and you’ve not really worked out in the last 10 years and they want you starting off with CrossFit, that’s not a good idea.

So you wanna make sure that you’re getting right, the right trainer. So I think that the, my best advice for that is to research your [00:28:00] trainer and make sure that they have enough credibility.

Male trainers, this is what I was gonna mention. Male clients are afraid of male trainers because they’re more embarrassed that they’re not going to be able to do. they think they should be able to do as a man. And so that’s why 50% of my schedule are males because I think they’re afraid of what a male personal trainer is going to think of

Carling: Ah, that’s that’s so interesting, but I wish that it wasn’t like that.

Linda: I know. You know what what I have found in the gym too. I, and this is something that, that I wish. Everybody knew. A lot of times an overweight person is embarrassed to go to the gym. They don’t wanna go. And I hear it all the time. I’ve heard people call me on the phone and say, I wanna train with you, but I wanna lose about 35 pounds before I come into the gym.

I’m embarrassed and I don’t know what makes ’em think that they should be embarrassed, because I’m gonna tell you right now, anybody listening who’s in that situation, if you are an overweight person, And you are going to the gym. Everybody in that gym [00:29:00] is applauding you.

You might not know it, but they’re all applauding you.

Nobody is saying, oh my gosh, look at this person. Everyone is like, oh my gosh. Good for them. Look at this.

And if some of us fit people don’t talk to you, it’s not because we’re secretly making fun of you or thinking bad things about you, it’s because we don’t want you to know that we see you because we know you’re embarrassed or we know that you are already.

It’s taken all you have to get yourself there, but I would love to encourage. You if you are scared or embarrassed to walk up to the first fit person at the gym and start a conversation, you would be amazed at how nice and how happy the fit people are to see you there and to have you there.

Carling: Yeah. I feel like every, when you work out, you get those like happiness hormones and I feel like people at the gym are just full of ’em.

Linda: Yes, we’re very nice people. Fit people typically, not [00:30:00] always, but typically very nice people.

Carling: And so maybe can you talk a bit about what is your book called and where can people find it? And you also do, you’ve done more than write a book, you’ve got some really cool online programs. Can you talk a bit about that?

Linda: Sure. My book is called Nerves of Steel, and I love the plan words on that. My, my last name is Steel, so it just, it was just fitting, you can find it on Amazon. And you and I would look up Nerves of Steel by Linda Steel with an E at the end because there are a couple other books called Nerves of Steel.

My picture’s on the front cover so you can’t miss it. . And I also have a website, if you can’t remember the Amazon thing, which I can’t imagine you’re not, but nerves of steel.net is my website and you can click on the link and it’ll bring you right to Amazon to get the book as well.

As far as my workout programs, I do have a couple workout programs, one of them. It’s called Shed and Shred, and it’s a great six week program, and I give you three days a week with this program what you should do. So my program is based [00:31:00] on a three day a week split, which is something that you and I talked about prior to getting on this show.

And the reason we love this three day a week split is because I recommend four days of rest. the reason I think that’s important is because when somebody starts this idea of, okay, I’m gonna work out, they go into it, balls to the wall, seven days a week, hour of cardio, hour of and you cannot sustain that

You cannot. So after, for about a week, again, you have all this adrenaline. You’re like, yeah, I’m gonna do this, but after a week you’re like, oh my gosh, this is so hard on the body and you’re gonna fail. If you go into it with this mentality of seven days a week, three hours a day.

Nobody has that kind of time. Nobody has that kind energy. Nobody can fit that into their day. And it’s not healthy for you either. Your body has.

So my program is based on a three day light, which is exactly what the shed and Shred program is. I recommend 20 minutes of rigorous cardio prior to lifting so that you could decrease your chance of injuries significantly.

Warm up the muscles, warm up the joints. After 20 minutes, cardio [00:32:00] about 10 minutes of abs. I give you some abdominal ideas, things to do for your abs. And then one day a week I pick biceps and triceps. One day a week I pick shoulder, back, chest, and one day a week I pick. I dedicate the entire workout to those specific muscle groups because you wanna make sure that you’re working a muscle long enough and hard enough to actually make a difference.

So once you do a bicep twice a day, the next day you take off as a rest day, then you work out again. You take another day off as a rest day. If you have to do back to back days, it’s fine. You just, you know it’s okay. But ideally, workout, rest, workout, rest, workout. That’s typically how I would recommend it.

Two days rest after leg day, you’re probably gonna need it if you’re doing a good enough leg day, you’re following the program, but there’s progression involved. So I give you three to four different super sets in each bicep, tricep, shoulder bag, leg workout, so that you have plenty to do while you’re at the gym.

I give you a mount rest time, so you’re resting, 30 seconds to a minute, sometimes two minutes, but so you can get in and out within, an hour typically.

Carling: I think that’s so [00:33:00] good. Yeah. Before we started, I was saying how my flaw is that if I’m not like training for the Olympics, Crossfit games, then I think I better not do anything and I’ll just audition for my 600 pound life. I need to f learn that. There’s like a balance and , it’s okay to go two or three days a week.

It’s better than doing nothing.

Linda: Absolutely. If you can get your diet in order, I have a nutrition plan coming out. The reason it’s not out yet is because I’m scratching my head over it because planning, somebody’s diet or nutrition is so individually based that I just feel. There’s not a plan that I’ve been able to come up with that doesn’t make me feel a little frivolous when I put it out there ah, this is good for everybody cuz it’s not.

You have people with allergies, you have people with restrictions. You have people who don’t like certain things. If I eat tuna fish every single day at lunch and people hate tuna fish, micro program is worthless.

So there are certain things that I, then there’s the vegetarian version and then there’s [00:34:00] the, so there’s so many things that take into consideration.

I just, I’ve yet to come up with a program. I’m working on it though, that doesn’t make me feel like I’m not doing a service to the person who’s gonna be paying me the money for it.

Carling: Yeah. That’s admirable because a lot of people just say, here’s my nutrition program. You’ll lose weight and gain muscle, and yeah. It doesn’t take into consideration that every body is different.

Linda: .So I’m working on it right now. If you can get your diet in order and you can contact me for your diet. I do sell nutrition plans online. They’re, and they are individual they’re very specific. We communicate via email or for phone or zoom, then I will be able to dial in your nutrition plan for you.

And then again, those two to three days a week at the gym will work even better if you can get your diet in. Workout, everything just really settles in your body, gets into a perfect balance, and you’re gonna start losing body fat until you’re at essential body fat.

Carling: We were laughing about how much we hate technology, but one, one of the nice things is that, you’re in Chicago, but you’re accessible to [00:35:00] anybody. In the world who, maybe senses that like, yeah, like Linda does seem like somebody I would hire and I need help.

you’re not confined to just this group of people where you live geographically.

Linda: It’s been amazing in that I have clients in the uk. I have clients in Sweden. I have clients in Miami. I

have clients in la. Yeah, it’s really, it’s been really great. I trained a man who worked on a cruise ship,

so I don’t even remember where he was calling out. Calling in

Carling: Yeah. Everywhere. That’s so smart. Yeah. That’s

Linda: Yep.

Carling: . Linda you’re such a joy. You’re so kind and inspirational. Your story is, I think, relatable and I’m really excited to read your book.

Linda: Thank you. Thank you. I sent you a copy. I’m not

sure if you’ve got it, but you, we haven’t received.

Carling: No, not yet, but I’ll check. I sent it to my work because I’m there every day. I was like, I’ll probably safely get it there. So I will check and I will read it. Thank you so much.

Alright, I’ll let you get on with your day and yeah, we’ll have to catch up again soon.

Linda: Absolutely. Thanks so much for having me. I really [00:36:00] appreciate

Carling: Awesome. You too. thank you so much for joining me on this episode. I hope you found our conversation informative and entertaining. If you enjoyed this episode, please don’t forget to follow me on social media. Share this podcast with your friends and leave a review@ratethispodcast.com slash I did not sign up for this.

Your support means the world to me. If you want more interviews, exclusive content and add free episodes, join the patreon@patreon.com slash I did not sign up.

I hope you all have a fantastic week ahead and we’ll talk soon. [00:37:00]