The Story of The Women in Fitness Association
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The Women in Fitness Association exists to create opportunity for Women, to give them a voice in the fitness industry and create opportunity for any woman interested in growing her career.
— Lindsey Rainwater

This past year something super exciting happened, and is very near and dear to my heart, a movement that is absolutely going to change the face of the fitness industry and welcome in a whole new wave of female leadership.  

The Story...

Last year, I attended the women in leadership summit at IHRSA, the experience created at the summit was like no other I’d had the chance to be a part of in our industry.  Being in a room full of brilliant women in support of our industry was like a deep exhale, a complete breath of fresh air and I didn’t want it to end.  Upon returning home after a fabulous week of  making new connections and seeing old friends, I came home with the desire to feel what I felt in that room at the summit.  I wanted a place where there was easy access to female mentors and a tight knit group of women to regularly collaborate with, I began my search to find a group that offered this kind of support, exclusively for women.  Once I realized it didn't exist, I knew what needed to happen next.

The rest is history... 

The Women in Fitness Association opened for membership May 31 of 2017 and by September we had formed a board of directors, bylaws, not for profit status, and over 60 women as associate members with global representation and corporate sponsorship. To date, we have over 80 members, three corporate sponsors, two meetings under our belts, serving over 200 women in total and an event planned to take place in San Diego the week of IHRSA. 

Not a day goes by that I am not daydreaming about what WIFA can and will become.  I think about all the women I know that want to run companies and be mothers and love travel, I am so excited that we’ve created a place to collaborate about how to accomplish that and so much more! 

None of this could have happened if I did not have an army of women supporting me in this endeavor! Our board of directors and founding members have carried our success through word of mouth and trust and belief in what we are doing.  Their brilliance and desire to lift women up to reach their fullest potential is humbling and truly exciting to be a part of. 

If you have not checked out the Women in Fitness Association, go to the website to see our upcoming events and ways to join.  I look forward to this being the beginning of something absolutely wonderful,

I am incredibly grateful for my mentors that said "why not, just do it", their ability to see what I was capable of before I could is what aided in my taking this leap of faith.  Thank you. 


Lindsey Rainwater, also known as Lindsey RainH2O, is a sought-after business advisor, Founder, writer & keynote speaker to the fitness and wellness industry.  For more information about Rainwater, follow her on Twitter@LindseyRainH2O
 

You Don't Know What You Don't Know.

Hello Blog, I've missed you.

Twelve weeks ago my husband and I welcomed to the world our first born son, Oliver Brysen.  I have paused my writing to turn my whole attention towards Mr Oliver and the best way I can think of starting my blog up again is to share with you my experience of transitioning into motherhood. 

Image is a screen shot of my screen

Image is a screen shot of my screen

You can learn a lot about a person by looking at their most frequently used emojis. Face palm, baby, heart and poop are all highly relevant ways to describe my life via images.

Reflecting on the past 12 weeks and my experience of labor and delivery, the underscored theme for me is this: I simply didn't know what I didn’t know. I have come to realize that no level of preparation, reading, even babysitting can prepare one for the transformation that occurs when having a child.

Looking back on my last few weeks pregnant I felt prepared, I thought I had a plan, I thought through every last detail around organizing my life to prepare for Oliver's arrival.  What actually happened?  Nothing can prepare even the most prepared person for what having a child does to change you.

Lindsey and Oliver One day old, July 22, 2017

Lindsey and Oliver One day old, July 22, 2017

I was having a conversation with one of my dear friends a few weeks ago and he said to me "yeah, you give a shit which makes it that much harder", how simple and complex is that statement and yet it  summarizes my entire world view.

I care, a lot, and am very thoughtful and purposeful about how I do everything and is therefore making my adjustment to motherhood a grand adventure. I knew going into this transition that what I was looking forward to the most besides the incredible fact of having a baby was the transformational playground it would be: I had no idea how deep that would go. 

My experience was of an intense journey in rediscovering myself in a new way.  I have always loved my work, my relationships and generally how I show up in the world and have done a tremendous amount of work around self discovery to really know myself intimately.  I’ve always known myself to have my to do list buttoned up at the end of each day, all emails read and responded to, notifications cleared, exercise done, house clean... this is no longer my life :) I’ve never had more days in a row where “getting to it later” is the theme.

Priority’s shift, right fellow Mums? Do the dishes or feed my newborn? Oliver wins every time!

Lindsey and Oliver, Over 5 weeks old, Photo Cred. From the Hip, Nina

Lindsey and Oliver, Over 5 weeks old, Photo Cred. From the Hip, Nina

For the structured control freak that I’ve always been, what a shake up! Not to mention the physical changes, little sleep, hormone roller coasters, postpartum depression and a deep love that becomes the new compass for everything. Woah. 

One of my favorite mentors uses the phrase "insight follows experience" Thank you Kathlyn Hendricks for this simple yet all knowing phrase.

I chose to share with you these humble facts as a way of tipping my hat to all the mothers that do this dance everyday.  The dance of doing their work, loving their spouse, loving their children and managing to put on mascara and smile while at it all!

The best thing is that time is truly magical, it really does heal and teach us.  Over the last 12 weeks time has taught me how to begin working again, getting more done in a day, caring for my needs to be a better business owner, wife and mother.  It has not been an overnight switch flip like I thought I could prepare for, but it has been my life’s greatest teaching so far.  

Thank you Oliver, my sweet Son for co-facilitating the most transformational experience of my life.  I am the luckiest mother alive to get to be your mama, thank you for choosing me! 

Lindsey, Jeremy and Oliver, Oliver 5 weeks old, Photo Cred. From the Hip

Lindsey, Jeremy and Oliver, Oliver 5 weeks old, Photo Cred. From the Hip


Lindsey Rainwater, also known as Lindsey RainH2O, is a sought-after business advisor, Founder, writer & keynote speaker to the fitness and wellness industry. For more information about Rainwater, follow her on Twitter@LindseyRainH2O

The Trap of Perfectionism and Doing it Right
Photo Credit, From the Hip Photo, March 2017

Photo Credit, From the Hip Photo, March 2017

Last month I shared my thoughts via audio about how much can you, or I can accomplish in a day, and the importance of asking for help and allowing others to support us. 

What is on my mind today has a similar flavor, and that is the notion of "doing it right".  As soon as I typed that phrase my internal dialog said "whatever that means", my rational mind wants to argue that there is no right way of doing anything, and yet the pressure that can ensue surrounding this myth can take over and paralyze my efforts.

A lot of the "do it right" thinking comes from the desire for perfection, an unattainable yet tempting place that women (at least myself) can tend to strive to be even while knowing it's not possible. 

"Pressure comes from all sides and settles uncomfortably in the laps of women trying to do everything the right way." -Karen Kleiman

A mind field of this type of thinking can pop up in areas where we are navigating something new, a path not walked down before. There is nothing like being 8.5 months pregnant that brings out the opinions of others the floodgates of advice comes rolling in causing lots of thoughts comparing to others and judging myself for what I do or don't know, "I have not thought of that, crap I should read more on that topic".  Because we live in a world where anything can be googled and Pinterest will be there to reliably show us all the possible "hacks" to get it right, it can be difficult to put the opinions aside and find a way that works for you. 

"Too many [women] are becoming anxious and depressed because they are overwhelmed and disappointed. Too many are letting their lives be poisoned by guilt because their expectations can't be met, and because there is an enormous cognitive dissonance between what they know to be right for themselves and what they're told is right for their children." .-Judith Warner

Regardless of the topic, there is an overwhelming amount of information available to us from others, our own research and imagined idea of how we are "supposed to" get something right. 

So how am I handling the feeling of "get it right" perfectionism as I round the corner into motherhood? Not overly gracefully but I am certainly putting effort into a few actions that have provided some reprieve that I will share with you. 

The first thing I have done is to do my best to have perspective and empathy about where the information is coming from.  I remember when my Father died three years ago, many people would say things to me like "when my grandma died", and at first I was offended that anyone would compare a grandparent to a parent, "do they have any clue what this is like".  When I chose to hear that person through the filter of empathy and love, I could see that more than likely they were just uncomfortable and wanted to relate to me in a way that they could, not really knowing what to say.  With unsolicited parenting advice, I am applying the same school of thought, this person is wanting to relate to me, be closer, and possibly share something that meant a lot to them, they might feel like they are handing me the keys to the parenting kingdom, maybe they are! The point is to rely on empathy and perspective to see people as my ally and with the filter of love. 

The other strategy I am employing to combat perfectionism and the "Do it right" mentality is to try to cut myself some slack.  This, is by far the hardest action for me to take and yet the simplest. The best way to actually do this are these two simple things; let myself off the hook for not knowing how to do something I have never done, duh, and, to not compare myself to others.  I was talking to a friend yesterday about how my workouts have not only changed but in the past week felt nearly impossible, I never thought I'd see the day that walking up hill was hard.  The best thing I can do for myself during this time is NOT get on Instagram and look for "moms to be that crossfit" to compare my efforts to others.  We all have our own experiences and for me sticking to my own without muddying the waters with what others do can be the best way to stay away from feeling like a failure. 

The beautiful underbelly of all of this is that if I peel off the layer of wanting to get it right and achieve perfection and see the innocence in my thoughts, my true intention is that I really want to be my best for those in my life I care about and the work I do in the world.  If I can remember to have empathy for myself and others I have a real chance at enjoying my experiences instead of making them right or wrong. 

How about you, does this resonate? Do you have a difficult time navigating new territory without comparing yourself to others or striving for out of reach perfectionism? 

Send me a note or comment here, I would love to hear from you! My intention is to blog as frequently as ideas come to me and I appreciate you reading along!  I look forward to posting about my experiences as I continue integrating motherhood into my work and relationships. 


Lindsey Rainwater, also known as Lindsey RainH2O, is a sought-after business advisor, Founder, writer & keynote speaker to the fitness and wellness industry. For more information about Rainwater, follow her on Twitter@LindseyRainH2O

Hang Up Your Hero Hat and Ask for Help Instead
How much can you accomplish in a day?  Well, if you are anything like me you take a certain amount of pride in what you are able to do with your time and most of the time, when you want something done you simply, handle it.

In the spirit of keeping things fresh and exciting, listen to this short and insightful dialog around asking for help.

Is it hard for you to know when to ask for help? 

Let me know what you think about the audio, something new I am playing with :) 

Click here if you'd like to listen on Anchor.com instead of in this post

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    Lindsey Rainwater, also known as Lindsey RainH2O, is a sought-after business consultant, leadership coach, writer and presenter to the fitness and wellness industry. For more information about Rainwater, follow her on Twitter@LindseyRainH2O

    How the Future of Work Can Inform Life Integration Choices
    Lindsey Rainwater, Photo taken by From the HIp Phtoto, March 2017 

    Lindsey Rainwater, Photo taken by From the HIp Phtoto, March 2017 

    Tony Robbins and others talk about ideas like "integration" instead of balance, for people like myself that are deeply passionate about their work and friendships, then it becomes less about choosing and more about integrating.  I often hear people say, "I don't act that way at work" or "in my personal life", statements like this rattle me! It is impossible to fragment yourself in that way. Sure, we can all perform certain tasks or deliver on objectives but who we are all bleeds together, you are a whole person everywhere you go and if "part of you" is not at the party, well, everyone including you is suffering. As I like to say, "who you are at the kitchen table is who you are at work"... my kitchen table is about to be set for 3, and I am anticipating the adventure of how that will propel me to be even better and have more to offer in every area of my life.

    The above quote is from my last article "the Context of Integration" if you missed it, check it out to inform my context for this blog... see how I did that? :)  My intention is to focus this blog post on all things integration, now that we have some context around why I am talking about integration on a whole new level, let's chat about how the future of work "mentality" can inform a schedule or ideals for living.

    Now as a disclaimer,  I am writing on these topics and speculating amidst my journey being pregnant, nothing I share has been vetted by myself as a parent, yet. So I am sure those of you that are parents already have informed opinions about what I am writing about based on experiences you've had, so please join in the conversation! It will be really great to see if my intentions and ideals line up with reality, only time will tell ;-)

    Back to "The future of work" idea... what is this concept all about anyway? It certainly is a heavy buzz phrase being used and I do have my own opinion on the topic and there is of course always also what google has to say.  

    The Future of work is a lot of things to a lot of people based on their motivation and topic they are relating it to, and, for the purpose of our discussion lets keep it simple;  if you distill down the concepts it boils down to what is possible relating to work, because of technology.   For instance, growing up, my Dad was an Engineer, he "went to work" everyday, to an office where his computer and the people he collaborated with also went, to do his job, returning home each evening leaving all the things required to "do his job", there at the office.  Now, if my Dad did that exact same job today, he could work 100% remote, from anywhere in the world.  Thanks to laptops, iPhones, and video conferencing a role like his could be done completely outside of the construct of a company occupying an office space etc.  

    With that flexibility all sorts of freedoms become available, he could have easily taken a lunch break at home, taken a 30 minute break to do the afternoon carpool pick up, and really allowed for a completely different co-parenting arrangement than what I grew up with.  My Mom would have had the flexibility during the day having him home, and arguably, he would have gotten the same (if not more) work done with less the typical office distractions.  The idea of co-parenting becomes more liberated when you add in "future of work" concepts because lines are blurred, it is no longer a linear process of "we all leave the house, we all come back to the house" but instead, the home becomes a hub  and off site offices or daycare becomes less necessary.  

    An important note to add here is that remote work requires many upstanding character traits both for the employee and the employer.  I am not saying this transition from office to home can happen over night, however with the right culture and values in place, anything is possible when seen through the lens of abundance.  The good news is if the organization and it's employees can take on the venture, the concept of the future of work can really liberate our existing "jobs" and create new dynamics that disrupt the old styles and models of work.

    One of my favorite ideas that is found inside of this same notion is that of "jobs" no longer existing and instead collaboration or aligned talent becomes the new way.  Think freelancing, but at signifiant scale.  However, that is another blog for another time, coming back to the topic... what is most important here is the idea that IF we are working in collaboration, with location freedom, the opportunities to get extremely creative with integration becomes completely available to anyone that wants to try it out. 

    In 2011 my mentor and friend, Bryan O'Rourke suggested I read a book called the 4 hour work week, I did and now I am going to suggest that you, go read that book if have not before!  That book planted a very important idea in my mind that has since collided with other similar ideas and helped inform many of my day to day decisions.  I realized after reading that book that my choices, what I as spending time on, was completely up to me, and my evaluation of how I did certain activities was also, up to me.  I (nor anyone else) is at "the effect" of any choices, you at some point, made a choice that is contributing to what is your current reality.  So if you are doing something and want to be doing something else, make a new choice.  For instance, would you rather spend an extra two hours per weekend with your spouse instead of cleaning your house, well, outsource that chore to a person that likes cleaning and pay them to clean your house, get that time back.  Feel like you can't afford that? How much did you spend at Amazon or at Starbucks today? The money is usually there if you look for it.  That is one example, but I really started asking myself questions about my time, where I spent it, was it really creating the results I wanted and how could I change if it wasn't? 

    A good place to start would be to take an inventory of what you are currently spending time on.  Just like analyzing your bank account transactions to assess where your money is going, assessing what you spend time in is a very similar activity.  Are you committed to suffering or thriving? wasting time or creating time?  All of these choices are yours for the taking. 

    A good way to do this is print out a by the hour calendar, or use a digital daily view and write in each day, then for the week what you are doing and for how long, don't lie, you will only cheat yourself if you do.  Once you have done this "reverse" calendaring of sorts, start to look at what you spend time doing and for how long, create groups, rank them, include sleep, tv time, time with loved ones, gym activities... record everything you do... how long does it take you to get ready in the morning etc.  After you have inventoried your time, take a good look at the facts about what you are spending time on and only when ready,  ask yourself these two vital questions.  

    Do you actually want to create time to integrate new and exciting endeavors? 

    Do you want to experience thriving or have you created a life of suffering to keep you safe?

    Part of this mind shift is giving up any notion of martyrdom or complaining, sure life can be hard, but talking about what you don't enjoy less action will no longer work once you know the facts about your time spending habits. 

    Once you know the answer to your question, if you are willing to integrate thriving into your life, the future of work becomes a concept that is totally obvious and easy to consider. 

    In my world, all of these activities and concepts combined by a very realistic (almost obsessive) knowledge of where my time goes, is really informing how I am planning to integrate being a mother, my work in the world and all of my favorite relationships into one big pot of Lindsey Rainh2o, soup! 

    Commitment, choice and intention.  Every single day can be filled with work helping others, time with those you love and time investing in yourself.  Although, becoming a mother is the largest integration I have ever imagined, I do believe that rather than thinking I can "do it all", whatever that means, instead, I get to choose from a place of choice.  I choose now and plan to continue to choose to create time each day to do the things I really love doing and that mindset, I believe will contribute to informing how I co author the next chapter of my life integration. 


    Lindsey Rainwater, also known as Lindsey RainH2O, is a sought-after business consultant, leadership coach, writer and presenter to the fitness and wellness industry. For more information about Rainwater, follow her on Twitter@LindseyRainH2O