Meet Yukiko – passionate about social justice, gender equity, Harry Potter, weightlifting and rescue dogs too!
“I work for the International Rescue Committee promoting health and wellness for resettled refugees, which is the perfect fit for my anthropology/international development/public health background. I’ve been married to my husband for over 6 years and we have three dogs – Russell, Kevin, and Carl who I talk about way too much. My hobbies include fostering dogs, traveling, eating food, and playing Dr. Mario. I hate cold weather and dream of living in a place with perpetual summer.
I was never into fitness growing up. I dabbled in a couple of different sports as a kid, but more just to be involved in something and always the kind where everyone got a participation trophy. I was the kid in the corner at gym class, praying that the ball would never come my way. As I got older, I would occasionally make New Year’s resolutions to work out twice a week with zero follow-through. The longest commitment to fitness I ever had was 2 weeks of P90X.
I hit a point in grad school where I started feeling really hypocritical for being in the Public Health field and promoting healthy behaviors to the masses, without actually practicing what I preached. I’d never stuck with one type of exercise for long because I’d get bored and it would inevitably start to feel like torture (*cough*running*cough*). I decided that for my 25th birthday in 2012, I was going to suck it up and join a CrossFit gym. WHAT?
I had no idea where to start or how to use gym equipment, so I liked the idea of having a short workout already laid out for me that changes every day. I also figured that investing some money in my fitness and being part of a community where I’d be held accountable would help me stick with it. People laughed when they found out I was going to do CrossFit, some even jokingly made bets on how long I’d last. I’ve always been this petite, scrawny, weak person that avoided pain, so no one could picture me throwing around weight or being a stereotypical crossfitter.
Well, joke’s on them because I lasted about two years. Along the way, I aquired a fondness for yoga and in late 2014, I fell in love with Olympic Weightlifting as well. While I enjoyed CrossFit, it was always kind of disheartening because there was only one “prescribed” workout for women, meaning I was supposed to be doing the same weight and competing against women who had a good 6 inches and 50 pounds of muscle mass on me. I gravitated toward Olympic Weightlifting because they actually had weight classes.
In early 2015, I did my first weightlifting meet and haven’t looked back since. I’m not naturally a very competitive person, so it was never that motivating to try to beat other people in CrossFit. I love setting personal goals in Olympic lifting, breaking old PRs, and watching the numbers on my lifts go up. I only want to beat myself in this sport and I love it!
*Gertie, Yukiko’s current foster dog, is going through a fitness journey of her own. Once she sheds a few more pounds and gets healthier, Gertie will be available for adoption through CAWS in Salt Lake City!
I’ve met some wonderful coaches and people the last several years of my fitness journey which has really challenged my introvert tendencies and allowed me to feel like I belong to this community of fitness-loving people that my previous self would have never attempted to connect with.
I’ve since moved away from CrossFit and now lift at home with my husband 5x per week. We have a little home gym set up where he can do powerlifting while I do my Olympic lifts. We lift together in the mornings before work and it’s my favorite part of the day. At first, I think I was driven by wanting to prove to myself and others that I could stick with it, and also the desire to get my money’s worth. But now, I genuinely love to lift weights and do it to get stronger, meet my goals, and ultimately to be healthy.
Working out isn’t just for my physical health, it also helps improve my emotional and mental health as well. Now that I’ve got lifting to cover the fitness aspect of things, getting better about meal planning and eating healthier overall is my next goal to tackle. I’d also love to get back into yoga and even find a tolerable way to do cardio to build up endurance. Of course, I have goals for specific lifts too. My biggest goal for this year is to set a new state record for my weight class in weightlifting!”
Goals change all the time in life and in health and fitness too. You’re covered at every stage with IdealFit, the best supplements made specifically for active women like Yukiko and YOU!
*These women may or may not be actual users of IdealFit products, we simply want to share their story.