Category Archives: Mental

Don’t Engage…Be Present by Bradley Grinnen

Here’s a great post about how we can react when we are situations that are rubbing us wrong! It’s not always easy to be “controlled” in those moments! My friend Bradley Grinnen gives a thoughtful view on confrontations….”Don’t Engage…Be Present”

Thanks Bradley!

Don't Engage...Be Present by Bradley Grinnen
Don’t Engage…Be Present by Bradley Grinnen

Bradley Grinnen

Full disclosure… I am unmistakably a believer.  In this space I often use the term ‘The Divine’ to refer to the Higher Power.  Please allow yourself to replace ‘The Divine’ with how you’ve come to know and understand God.


The world has a funny way of bumping into us and completely changing our inner state of being.  One moment we’re happy and content, going through our day, and then BAM!  Someone that we really don’t feel good being around runs into us with the kind of passing comment that can immediately derail us.  We end up having 4 or 5 different conversations with that person in our head for the rest of the day.  Maybe we tell them off.  Maybe we logically box them into a corner and then knock them out with the tremendously practiced words we’ve worked so hard to come up with.  All in our head…

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Dream Big!!

I just have a quick thought for the day…something I learned long, long ago…

If you can dream it…you can achieve it!

  • It may take longer than you think
  • It may push you harder then you ever thought possible
  • It may alter your surroundings
  • It may look a bit different then the original setting
  • It may bring you right up to your breaking point


If you can DREAM it…you CAN achieve it!!

Keep it close to your heart and keep running towards the beauty that God has placed within your heart!! A dream is a gift…It you were able to envision it…see it within your own minds eye…then it’s possible!! If it’s possible, then you can do it! Keep at it!

I know that with anything I’ve ever gone after, I’ve had to adjust and reevaluate often and regularly. It takes adjusting to the needs! I don’t always see all that is needed or necessary right from the beginning, but I do have the overall picture planted firmly. It’s our job to keep walking toward the finish line…no matter the obstacle!! Keep at it!!


Go make your day great!!


Fitness for fun…for confidence…for life!

Red Fox

There’s comes a point when you’ve just got to say “ENOUGH”  I don’t know when and where and what that will be for you, but I DO know what you’l get when you make that decision.  Depending on where you are when you start your journey, it may mean you have a way to go, or maybe you just need to firm up and get some energy again, but it’s not a diet or a moment or even a destination really.  It’s a lifestyle!  When you do achieve this, one of the great side benefits is that even though you started out not “feeling it” or wanting to, the fun does come!  It does become something that is enjoyable!

I think this is true because of how utterly great you feel when you start to achieve some results!!  I’ve seen it time and again, sticking with it and hitting some mile-stones and how the excitement starts to build!  Belief that it’s possible to get the results that you are desiring…it’s so exciting!!

I know that it is possible and when you have the fitness and energy again (or maybe for the first time)…confidence comes too!  It’s a side benefit of achievement.  This is true in many areas of setting a goal…any goal and achieving it.  No matter how many times you fall off or come across a set-back, get right back at it and keep moving forward!

  • Regardless of feelings
  • Regardless of your past
  • Regardless of how far you fell
  • Regardless of who’s with you or not


Just keep at it and you WILL get there!!


“If you have nothing encouraging to say…Say nothing at all” Just some thoughts…

Pamela “Red Fox” Smith

It’s interesting to me how so many think that without even beginning their lives or going through trials they can cut down those who have and share openly where they get their strength!  Who are we to stomp on another for going after goals and achieving them through leaning on Christ!  I am talking to fellow Christians.

I have entered into a Fitness world where I’ve been amazed at the time, dedication and openness from these people!  They achieve and lean on Jesus through it all.  Many of them share openly their beliefs and yet without even taking one look at that part, others cut it down!  Why?  Jesus says that As long as the name of Christ is preached, it doesn’t matter where it comes from.  God knows we all walk different paths!  We’ve all come from somewhere.  Not everyone has been raised in the church or even a solid family.  Not everyone has been given the “clean life”  In fact, many have slipped and fallen numerous times!  God loves those people!!  He claimed that He came for the broken!  He ate and mingled with them!!  He loved their humbleness…that comes from living a life and knowing full well that mistakes and short-comings were made!!

Jesus loves us each right where we are at… He sees our heart seeking after Him.

How else are we to reach these people (myself included!) without stepping into their world and loving them right where they are at!!  I don’t hide behind the Bible or Church…I do believe and stand on the promises that God gave me and have found them after much testing to be true!  I also attend and give to the church…but it’s no excuse to cut down and judge others!!  Shame on those Christians who do!  God says to encourage others…so do it already!!  “Give to one another in ‘Brotherly Love'”

I have found that competitions are one of the most encouraging, uplifting, cheering places both in and out of them!!  I’m proud to be associated with all of those I’ve formerly competed with…without a doubt!  No matter what size, what the suit looks like, if we have stretch marks, or skin that can’t be helped from losing so much weight-the others cheer on!  Proudly exclaiming the long distance we all have come!! It takes hard-earned effort to get there!  And very few in my limited experience say that they do it all on their own!!  So many believe in the power and strength that they receive from Jesus Christ!!

Stay true to you!

Does Jesus need us to be thin and fit….no.  He loves us regardless!!  But to not be fit is to lack energy, inspiration, and many times deal with outright depression.  Is that where God wants us??  I say NO!!  He wants us to be at our best!!  That way we are ready for whatever He brings our way!!

I can’t say enough how amazed I am with the lives that because I’ve gotten into great shape, that I’ve been blessed to know and touch for Jesus!! I’ve shared tears and laughter and stories galore already and I know there’s much more to come!  Who am I to stop that work? To me, it’s a ministry in its own right!!

Pamela “Red Fox” Smith 2nd place…Go after your goals and inspire yourself and others in the process. God wants us to be stretched! This is where we find His strength!

As for lusting…I’ve found ZERO of that within the competitions!  None!! It’s just not even a question!  I have found that outside of them, but I find that with being fully clothed!!   I cannot control what others think… I can only do what God calls me to do and to do it with My BEST!!

With much love and respect…~Pamela

Consider your ways…

Seeing in our own minds 1st is believing!! Sometimes you need to lean on others for this belief until you have your own!

I have a few thoughts from my own personal devotion today… First, here’s the verses I’m contemplating.

1.  “The sluggard craves and gets nothing, but the desires of the diligent are fully satisfied.” Proverbs 13:4

2.  “Commit to the Lord whatever you do, and your plans will succeed.” Proverbs 16:3

3.  “The plans of the diligent lead to profit as surely as haste leads to poverty.” Proverbs 21:5

4.  “Buy the truth and do not feel it, get wisdom, discipline and understanding.”  Proverbs 23:23

5.  “Teach me your way, oh Lord, and I will walk in your truth: give me an undivided heart…” Psalm 86:11

6.  “But if serving the Lord seems undesirable to you, then choose this day whom you will serve…” Joshua 24:15

A while back I was introduced to a woman who was about 5 ft.  She was heavy with a boisterous personality.  Most of you know how hard I work at being able to compete and look the way I do.  It’s my lifestyle.  I am also very active with my family and being outdoors.  I’d rather be outdoors than anywhere!! Sitting still is not a very good option for me!  Just ask my family.  Sitting and watching a movie…forget about it!  This woman was introduced to me because she “desperately” wants to lose weight.  At least that’s what she’s telling herself and others.  She took one look at me and said, “Well, if I are tall like you (I’m 5’9″) I would look just like you!  I’m not heavy, I’m just vertically challenged!”  rather than letting my emotions get in the way of being offended (which could have easily been the case!) I just simply continued to focus in on her and deciphered what it was that she wanted really.  

Now, she said this jokingly…sort of.  As we talked further, she mentioned reason after reason why she looked the way she did.  She was unhappy with herself and yet wanted to continue living, eating, and acting the way she always has.  I would talk about exercise and she was already doing what she thought would work.  I talk about eating and she was “healthy”–she ate just fine.  I talked about her lifestyle and she was “way too busy” to make any changes.  Do you all know the definition of insanity?  Doing the same thing and expecting different results!

The problem isn’t really any of those things with this woman or any of us for that matter.  The problem was she lacks the discipline, desire and belief that’s it’s truly possible for her to look a different way!

You’ve heard of “seeing is believing!”  It’s true.  We must first be able to see in our own minds that it’s possible to achieve our goals–even with the way we look!  This can be very difficult – especially for those of us who have had lifetimes of being heavy or inactive.  I’ve know countless people who were obese or heavy or “husky” children and struggle with the self-image!   They are fighting the memories and have never really seen themselves as fit and healthy!  They don’t know what it looks like on them and have never had it so “is it really possible??”  Yes!!!  Yes it is!

Success start in your own mind. Do you believe you can?? What does that look like to you?

To achieve in any area of our lives, we need to first get painfully honest with ourselves.  This woman did not want to do this…especially to a total stranger who in her mind has been always fit!  It isn’t true…but she didn’t know that!  She was so busy making excuses, that I couldn’t tell her either!  Without being completely honest, how are we to know what changes we need to make?

If I want to take a trip to Disney World, I need to know where I’m starting at.  That way I can map out the trip and know how many miles and how long it will take.  It’s not emotional…it’s logical.  Emotions have NOTHING to do with it!  I’m not a failure because I’m starting in Northern Michigan…It’s just a fact!

Any goal — especially our health, and being fit and firm is the same way.  Pull our emotions out of the picture and we can clearly see what is working and what isn’t.  We first need the facts, then we can adjust accordingly.  The problem lies in that we get all mixed up with the emotions and self-images and struggle to get real honest!  We start calling ourselves names in our own heads and tell ourselves that it’s “just not possible”…I say “BUNK!!”  Like the old police show “Just the facts Ma’am.  Just the facts.”  Pull the emotions out of the picture and lets look at the facts…

  • What you are eating?
  • Where do you want to be for real?
  • What you are willing to change and replace?
  • What is your metabolism?
  • What is your activity level?  

When we take the time to answer these questions, we can get a game plan together that will work for you.  This is NOT A DIET!!!  This is a LIFESTYLE!!!  I don’t believe I’ve ever mentioned that one before…hahahaha…ya right!!

Our emotions and old self-talk says that it’s not possible.  The fact is that it is possible.  Our emotions say we aren’t worthy…the truth is that you are “Fearfully and wonderfully made”  and God loves you and has created you very unique!

The third area is one of the hardest areas.  We don’t like change!!  Our bodies fight it as well!  It takes discipline to make the necessary permanent changes in our lives; to create habits that work for us instead of against us!

Sitting in front of the TV eating hot dogs, cake, twinkles, processed foods, candy, chips, wings, beer, sugar over and over just isn’t working for us!  I know…your too busy.  But hey, If you are not willing to change these habits, then you don’t have the right to complain about your thick thighs and big belly.  I’m just sayin…  I get it.  I’ve been heavy and lacking energy too!  I know…I understand.  Shhhh…. Quiet the excuses and take an honest look.

The key to success!


1.  Get honest

2. Replace some habits and make them stick.

3.  It takes discipline.  

 Discipline:  Doing the the habit to achieve the desired result regardless of emotions or circumstances.  

I love the Nike saying:  “Just Do It!”  Seriously, just do it!  I KNOW that it’s possible.  Trust that.  The rest is up to you.


Going Through Tough times??? Lean in Close!!

Pamela “Red Fox” DeVrou Smith

I gotta tell ya…today is a bit rough for me!  Honestly, I could use a nice punching bag and some kickboxing lessons (they would wipe me out!!)  I’ve been pushed and toyed with and it messes with me at times.  I find it usually happens when I’m real close to a goal.  Ever notice that??  I’m just over a week from my next competition (Grandville ), and the pressure is mounting.  I feel I’m waaaay more ready for these next two competitions than I was for Dearborn and Cleveland!!! I’m actually very excited about them!!  So why is it that others need to toy with me at this time??? It’s just life I guess!!  I know the very last thing that (ok I’m hesitating here but…it is how I believe so…)..the last thing that Satan would want is for me to go and to be successful in any endeavor that I take on!!  ESPECIALLY if I’m opening it all up for others to follow.  Hmmm…  I believe the Competitions and Red Fox Fitness qualifies for this one!!

I’m not going to tell you what all is going on (I know!!!  Just know that I’m not dealing with it very good internally!!  See, I am just like you!!) However, I will share with you how I’m getting out of the “funk” for the day!  For me, it usually doesn’t take too long!! I really do work on sharing with God how I’m feeling and try and let Him show me a better way!!

  • First I gave myself a pep-talk- you know…I’ve got this.  God’s got this.  Looked into the mirror and affirmed (funny, when I did this I had a friend message me that I need to do this!!  lol).  It didn’t work out so good…I was still ticked!
  • Next, I went for a couple mile run.  That does usually clear my head pretty good! It did help a little.
  • I read a devotion and my Bible and prayed… All that did was remind me to hand it over…I did.
  • Then I went online looking for some motivational videos or songs…

With all of that, I feel much better (oh and I ate a few crabs!!  lol)  Did my issues go away??  No.  But, I am in a much better mindset to handle them if need be.  Sometimes, it’s just a matter of continuing to work the plan and plugging away at the dream regardless of how I’m feeling!!  Rodney Atkins has a song that is appropriate for all this…

If Your Going Through Hell, Keep on Going..”

I don’t believe anyone has the right to tear another down.  It’s not my place to tell you your dream isn’t going to happen!! God’s word clearly states that we are to encourage and uplift each other!!  We all learned (at least I hope so!!) that if you don’t have anything nice to say, say nothing at all!!  How awful if you’re the one who walks around silent all the time because you can’t see the good that is in others!!  Or worse yet, has selfish negative things to say!  OK..enough of my soap box.  To honor yourself, honor others, honor faith…Allow belief to come into the picture!

  • Belief with yourself and your dreams!

No matter what someone else said or didn’t say, I’m not stopping!!  This is me taking care of me!  I’m loving and kind to those others, but I won’t change who I am and be miserable…this is my life!  God gave it to me to use wisely!

  • Belief in others

OMG!!  Please whatever you do, encourage someone today!!!  I mean really, it is so important to allow others to try and learn and yes sometimes fail!!  Let them fall if necessary and be there loving on them throughout it all!

  • Belief in that God’s got them!

Someone else’s dream is just that…someone else’s!!  It’s their walk with God, with themselves.  It’s their journey…not yours!  Allow them the space to grow!  Give an encouraging word!!  Always!! Just smile and encourage instead of talking about and gossiping about them!!  You’ll feel better.  I promise!

Go on…make today great!!  Smile, Laugh, Enjoy, Struggle and by all means look in the mirror and at those around you and ENCOURAGE!!

I believe in you!!


Here are some Other great posts for you to check out on this subject!

It’s a little thing really, but it carries so much weight!

Just in Time

Pamela DeVrou Smith profile

“I’m going to show you how great I am” How Great Can YOU be?

Pamela DeVrou Smith – Red Fox

Something needs to stir within you…

I don’t know what it will take to make you realize just exactly who you are and the  power you have running through you.  You have untouched, untapped endless potential and…right this very moment…it’s going to waste!  What will it take to make you realize…

How unique…

How Great…

How special…

You truly are!  You were created.  Molded.  Formed.  All in a “secret” place…The thoughts that God has about you and more than the grains of sand….dwell on that for one moment!!!  More than the grains of sand!!!  If that all is true…There is no one here on Earth that you can compare yourself too!  Stop doing it!  You only have you against you.  Are you better than yesterday?  Are you striving to achieve?? Are you going after your God-Given DREAMS????

Red Fox Leg Extensions

Stretch yourself beyond what you ever thought possible…

Place yourself into submission of that DREAM…

Test your own strength and make it grow stronger by going after all that you didn’t hardly dare to dream…

Go to your very ends…

Pamela DeVrou Smith at Anytime Fitness in TC

When you are there…look inward and look up.  Place yourself, your goals, and all that you desire within God’s trust and care.  He’s got you!  Even now!  Dare to trust.

I pray that you get fit…Spiritually, within your relationships, physically, nutritionally, & mentally…Grab a hold of God’s logic and thoughts about you…about life…and get fit in all High 5 areas!!


With much love…


I’ve been promising two things….Update and Photo Shoot Pics!

Pamela DeVrou Smith-Red Fox

I’m a bit late or right on time…you decide!  It is May 1st and I’ve measured and weighed in!  So here are the results!  Before I show you though, I want to talk about how excited I am to go to Grand Rapids!! Well, really Grandville, Michigan.  I grew up in the little town next to it…Jenison.  I graduated back in 1987 (boy does that make me sound a bit old!!  lol) and..I have a class reunion to go to this year!!  I want to call out my classmates and let them know….”You Still Have Time To Get In Shape Before the Reunion!!!!!!”  There…Thanks.  I needed to do that for them!  hee hee…

Pamela DeVrou Smith Formal-RFF

There is something about taking great care of yourself!  Remember, I’ve been both heavy and in shape!  I feel sooooo much better when I’m in great shape!  I have more confidence, more energy, I’m able to keep up with my kids! The works!  It’s funny how we are always drawn to someone who takes care of themselves.  I think maybe we think it will rub off!  I’m praying that it does.  If I could take anyone who isn’t in good shape and help them in any way that I could…I would!  To let them experience how it feels to fit into jeans or to bend over and tie your shoes without the struggle or to not be tired all the time!  And jealousy….forget about it!  No need.  I’m doing all that I can (that is within my power) to give my life it’s best that I can.  When I do that, I have no regrets about it.  I guess what I’m trying to say is that it’s worth it!  Go for your health!  Fight for it!  You deserve to look into the mirror and feel good at the person staring back at you!!  Just to remind you that I come from the ‘have-nots” too and remember how I felt back then…I will give you a picture of me then along with my photo shoot pics.  They look like two different people!! Feel free to message me or connect with me on Facebook or Twitter and let me know how I can help YOU attain your goals!!  With enough time and dedication…it’s possible (keep telling yourself that!!)

Last months Stats:

Pamela DeVrou Smith Sorbet Formal
  • Arm:  12 3/4
  • Weight:  149
  • Chest:  35 1/2
  • Waist:  26 1/2
  • Hips:  36 1/2
  • Thighs:  21
  • Calf: 15″

This months Stats:

  • Arm:  12 1/4
  • Weight:  141
  • Chest:  43 1/2
  • Waist:  26 1/2
  • Hips:  36 1/4
  • Thighs:  20 3/4
  • Calf: 15″ (They are still being stubborn!!)
Pamelas before picture 2001
Pamela "Red Fox"

Continue reading I’ve been promising two things….Update and Photo Shoot Pics!

You Hurt me!! And You Want Me to Forgive you??

Forgiveness is Fitness!Here at Red Fox, we believe in 5 areas of fitness and we take them seriously.

Spiritual, Relational, Physical, Nutritional, & Mental

The High 5 starts with Spirituality…

This comes first for a reason.  We were created with an area inside of us that is quenched best by connecting to something much greater than us.  I believe in Jesus Christ.  He is my Lord and Saviour.  In fact, I’m not sure how to separate myself from this relationship that I have.  I was once asked to deny my faith in Jesus by a man who I adored.  He asked me to give it all up.  To him it was an intellectual thing and I could just let it go.  This man was from Ireland.  I thought about how to explain it the way he could understand.  I asked him if he could ever just stop being Irish and from Ireland…. It is in and throughout who he is.  So is my walk with God.  It’s not a religion.  Or Church.  Or a building that I attend on Sundays.  It is the lifeblood of who


I am.  My heart seeks after God.  I am not perfect nor have I arrived (nor will I ever arrive).  I continually mess up.  I sin (I once heard an explanation of sin as “Missing the Mark” from Steven Furdick @ Elevation Church. Beautifully put!).  We ALL do this “Missing the Mark” daily!!  We get tired, grumpy, walked on, forgotten and hurt.  Sometimes we are the one hurting others.  We do this without thinking sometimes and…we do it on purpose at other times!! We let our emotions just simply get the best of us!  I do it…you do it… it happens.  Personally, I know how awful I feel when I let my tongue go off like a race horse!! I’ve said and done some awful things!  Later…I regret most of it!

Winston Churchill Success is not final…

God…looks at our hearts.  He knows we get tired.  He knows we get worried and scared.  He knows we get hungry.  He knows even better than we do how our emotions can get the best of us!  I’m a Mom.  I have four children of my own and two step daughters.  When my kid were (are) younger, there are things that they do that I can excuse.  They break something by bumping it.  They don’t have total control over their bodies and move around way too quickly.  Oops.  Something I really liked gets caught up in their learning how to control themselves.  I can excuse it, because I know that they are still learning.  They didn’t mean to do it!  I, as their mother know their heart!  God sees us the same way.  He knows our maturity and ability to handle the situation.  He knows that we aren’t “all grown up yet” and can excuse us and forgive us and love us through our messes.

Now, just because I understand doesn’t mean that I look the other way.  There is still a lesson in the broken pieces.  What my child did was still wrong and needs to be addressed.  They need to help clean up the mess and apologize for their mistake.  I will smile and love on my child letting them know all is well AFTER they apologize and ask for forgiveness.  Just the same, we need to address what it is that we’ve done and ask for forgiveness from those we’ve stepped on or hurt.  It’s hard…but necessary not only for them, but for ourselves.  We need reconciliation in our relationships and in our walk with God himself!  Our Heart needs to feel at peace and one with Our True Source of strength!

It’s a rare moment when you come across someone who does this.  However, when we have been wronged, we are to be at the ready to forgive.  This process needs to happen long before it’s asked.  For me, it’s all about looking into the mirror.  I do the same dumb things that others do to me so how can I accuse them of being so awful when I go and do it too!!!???  It gives me the ability many times to understand the one who wronged me!

Red Fox Fitness Tulip…from our backyard!

A year or so back, I had someone tear me apart from limb-to-limb verbally.  This guy cussed and swore and called me some bitter names.  Had we been face-to-face I’m not so sure it wouldn’t have gone to blows.  It was bad!  He was doing some service work for me and didn’t do what I asked.  When I questioned him about it, he lost control of his tongue completely!!  Clearly, the venom coming out of his mouth was from way more than me questioning him.  However, I was in tears and angry and hurt all at the same time.  My husband stepped in the conversation taking the phone from me (because no one talks to his wife that way…period!! Good man!!), and the venom continued at him!! Needless to say, we had nothing good to say about that business.  I even avoided driving down that street for a long time so I wouldn’t have to be reminded of “That Man!”

It is finished! For more than what Jesus did on the cross! Allow Mistakes and hurts to be finished too! Yours and theirs!

This past Sunday I was in church like usual and a man come up to me with tears in his eyes asking me to forgive him.  All I could say was for what?  I didn’t know this man and I didn’t remember anyone wronging me.  As he explained who he was, I knew.  All I could think about doing was giving this poor man a hug letting him know it was all ok…especially now that he addressed it!  Water under the bridge!! It takes an honest and humble person to admit when they are wrong.  Clearly, he wanted to attend church (he was new there!) without having to think about what all happened over a year ago!  Chalk it up to a bad day, being way too hungry, stresses of life…whatever.  “We have all sinned and fallen short!”  Last time I checked…all…means all!

That reminds me…I have amends to make from my past as well!  Be sure to forgive and to ask for forgiveness…just see how much love is poored out within you.  Let go of those hurts…they are not worth holding onto.  They hold you back from following your heart and block the goodness from flowing through you!

With love,


Red Fox Fitness Pamela DeVrou Smith