Check out our special Q&A and get inspired to create your own fitness journey!
Q: When did your journey start?
I have always struggled with my weight and the constant feeling of never being good enough when it came to my appearance and body. I tried every “quick fix” diet under the sun, always looking for that “miracle” that would take away the pain and negative self-talk I carried with me on a continual basis.
As you can imagine, none of those things ever “fixed” me and, more times than not, left me feeling worse than before. Some worked, as far as weight loss went, but none of them ever addressed the negativity I had towards myself and because of that, nothing ever stuck permanently.
It would just be a matter of time before I’d find myself on the never-ending hamster wheel of gaining weight back and then beating myself up about it.
Q: What made you want to make a change?
A couple of years ago, there were a few pictures that had been taken of me that, when I saw them, made me want to just cry. It was at that point that I had finally had enough. I was ready to do whatever I needed to, to not only lose weight but more importantly to stop hating on myself so much!
So, at that point, I decided that I was going to do something different, something I had never done before and that was completely contrary to my thinking up until that point. I made myself a promise that I was going to give myself an entire year of consistently working out and, no matter what, I was going to try my hardest to love myself along the way and see where it took me.
It wasn’t always easy, and I didn’t always remain as consistent as I would have liked, but I stuck to both of those promises and what I gained from that is worth more to me than any weight I could have ever lost. I now feel accomplished, confident, and have taken pride in myself and the efforts I have and am continuing to make!
Q: What tips do you have for others starting out?
First and foremost, you will never move forward if you spend all of your time hating on your body, your efforts, etc. We all understand that no relationship would ever survive if all that was ever expressed was negative, yet that’s what we give to the relationship we have with ourselves and then wonder why we never reach our goals! LOVE YOURSELF, LADIES!!! There is and will only ever be one “you”!
Do your best not to compare yourself or your efforts to anyone else. I follow quite a few women on social media who inspire the heck out of me, but I have to always be careful that I do not allow myself to fall into the trap of comparison. There will always be someone doing something “better” than you, but that doesn’t mean that you are “less than”. The more you love yourself, the more you will be able to have a full appreciation for what others are accomplishing and their successes can become fuel for your fire!
On more of a nutrition/exercise note, start off slow with realistic goals. Don’t try and do a complete overhaul of your life overnight. Slowly start to cut back on foods that maybe aren’t the best for you and start to incorporate more exercise. Spend your time doing something you actually enjoy!
When I first started, I honestly had no interest in getting into the gym. To me, that sounded torturous! So, instead, I went for walks. I loved my walks and found myself walking further and further each time. I was starting to feel better which made me actually want to continue to hit the pavement every day, and because of that, I stuck with it. The same is true for me today. I am always changing up my workouts to keep things fresh! I can honestly say that now, the times that I think “I don’t want to workout today” are few and far between. My workouts are pretty tough and I am constantly challenging and pushing myself, but because I enjoy them I have and will continue to stick with it!
Q: What have been some of the biggest obstacles you’ve had to overcome?
Like most of us experience, we are our own worst critics. I have come a long way from where I once was regarding my negative self-talk, but that doesn’t mean that it still doesn’t rear its ugly head every so often. I try my best not to give in to those thoughts and feelings, but I do falter sometimes. I know that this will probably always be one of my biggest challenges, but I no longer feel helpless when it happens, nor do I allow it to drag me down anymore.
I’ve learned that you have to flip the switch on your thinking. When a negative thought hits, don’t give in to it; instead, replace it with something positive and let that be your focus! Conquering the battle that can sometimes go on in your mind, for me, has been harder than any workout I’ve ever done, but I am so much stronger now because of it!
Q: What are some of your go-to, favorite meals?
I am, honestly, as boring as the summer day is long when it comes to eating right. I will usually find one or two things that work for me and I will stick with that until I feel the need to change it up a bit. Currently, I am eating a lot of grilled chicken salads and eggs! I also have strawberries and a little peanut butter just about every night. I typically try to keep my protein intake on the higher side and my carbs a little lower (nothing drastic) because that’s what makes me feel the best.
Q: What are some go-to supplements that have helped?