My Fitness Journey – Halfway Mark Check-in

Everyone has a vice when it comes to health. Maybe it is scarfing down junk food, drinking the nights away, fighting insomnia, or obsessing over laying horizontally all the time on the couch. Every human fails at something.

Like millions of Americans, I struggle with my diet. I have fluctuated in my my weight and journey for optimum fitness time after time. Whether it was work stress, going to a lot of outings, or seasonal changes, my taste, and discipline with food was as stable as standing on water. Not only that, my metabolism had significantly slowed down due to age (*tears).

All photos are by Sarah Mackenzie Photo.

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Realizing the Change

Through the year, I would fall into a pattern. During the summer, I dedicate myself to working out practically every day and eating right. I would be full of energy and inspiration. However, once the temperatures dropped, my whole being would shift. I’d only want to sleep and eat and not just eat, eat well (or in other words – bad!). I start craving pizza, mashed potatoes, macaroni and cheese, other carb-heavy dishes to complement my long slumbers. All of which I could easily battle in the warmer months. My close friend pointed out that I may have a mild case of seasonal depression. It makes sense! I always called this phase my time to “hibernate.”

This year I found a way to shallow my jump into the deep end. In April 2017, I made a promise to myself, and I needed someone to not only show me how but also hold me accountable. At this point, I weighed more than I ever have in my life. I saw more rolls developing, my arms grew floppy, and my clothes stopped fitting. I was getting more insecure and unhappy.

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One day, my friend complained that she needed help going to the gym as we both stuffed our faces with P.F. Chang’s spring rolls. Once she said it, my whole body reacted, and I sprung at the idea. I don’t know what prompted this passion to burst in my tummy. It wasn’t like the idea was an original one, but for whatever reason, I felt determined to start working on myself again. Just by her stating it, I was suddenly aware of how much control I had over my weight. I wanted to change, and I wanted it then as I still do today.

I signed up at a super affordable gym in Winston-Salem, NC called Kraze Fitness. It was close and easy to get to from my home, and the price tag fit what I wanted to spend in a gym. Not only that, it had a grungy hole-in-the-wall atmosphere which was refreshing. It lacked that stuffy body builder air as everyone was so friendly. Most importantly, I appreciated that the bodybuilding folks that did go there didn’t look you up and down as you made your way to class. Everyone did their own thing and was in their world.

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Taking action with a personal fitness trainer

After my first spin class, the leading man of personal training in Winston-Salem, Louis from GetFit, approached me. He offered a free personal training session in which I took full advantage of. I always wanted to know what it was like to work with a personal fitness trainer even if I couldn’t afford one. Louis’s first session was so hard. Through my apple-red cheeks, buckets of sweat pouring down my face, and donkey breathing, I quickly realized I needed to break the mold if I wanted to lose fat and gain muscle. Luckily, I had a little extra change that month because of taxes, so I decided to commit to seeing a personal fitness trainer twice a week.

After signing on the dotted red line, Phil became my official fitness trainer in Winston-Salem. He has been phenomenal in showing me what hard work is in the gym. Not once has the exercises gotten easier. Phil would always amp up the weights to make it all harder before that sense even hit me.

Every month or every other, I would get measured in inches, pounds, and body fat. After six months, I have been able to lose:

  • Over 8 pounds
  • 7% body fat
  • Around 7 inches off my waist

Side note: The 36-pound Kettlebell is awesome as it immolates a chimpanzee (also listed in my gift list). Their whole line is of different apes for specific weights. You can get this from Onnit who also have zombie themed line if you want to workout from home. This sucker is my husband’s as he is an avid workout-at-home guy. I thought it be cute to add to the shoot in case you guys are interested.

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The Set Back

Winter has set me back as much as I hate to admit. Though I have gained some body fat, I know it is not nearly as bad as it would be if I didn’t have Phil getting me to the gym. Through some of these cold long and dark days, I would have been asleep after a full plate of spaghetti. But going to meet him has kept me accountable. Though most would get frustrated at the fact they gained back 3% body fat, I was not. If anything, that measurement shed light that I was going in the wrong direction with my diet.

After all of this, I am proud to come as far as I have. I am NOT at my fitness goal, but I am taking my time. I could have eaten way leaner and sacrificed some luxury foods to get to my fitness goal faster but honestly; I like to live life a little. If I want a damn slice of pizza during my monthlies, I WILL have it. If I am out in a night with my girlfriends in Charlotte, I WILL drink.

Not to say I didn’t change my diet at all. Instead of wine every night or every time I go out to eat, I drink water with lemon. Instead of massive deserts, I stick to yogurts and light carb ice creams – if that; sometimes I just drink tea to curb night munchies. I have left bread in the dust, started lunch prepping, and been hyperaware of my portions.

My arms and shoulders have developed shape. My endurance has increased during cardio and I have graduated from 3/5 lb weights to up to 25/30 lbs. It is amazing. My fitness journey is slow and long and has ups and downs but it’s mine, and I love it. I appreciate the Getfit team with their high-quality service and can-do spirit.

Hopefully, this fitness story was interesting to you all. I am very passionate about it and am a little embarrassed to show you some pics especially when I am not at my full potential – YET. But I wanted to share my story in hopes to motivate anyone that has struck a new years goal and is already struggling to find a little encouragement.

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To sum up, remember…

  1. Trainers will NOT do the work for you. They are there to guide you to do it right. They will help you see those results, so you don’t get frustrated and give up.
  2. Investing in a fitness trainer is NOT all it takes to see weight loss. You can’t see your trainer and then head to a fast food joint right after and then complain when you don’t notice change. You have to try.
  3. TRUST Your Fitness Trainer. Trainers are only there to keep the momentum going when you are weak and vulnerable. It is because of Phil I know how to workout on my own, and know my diet needs to improve.
  4. You are the force. You are in control of your fitness journey. You may fail like I have this past month but your body will fluctuate as a woman and the harder you try, the better your results. Just don’t stop and keep at it!YOU are the main reason for achieving your weight loss goals.

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The OOTD Breakdown

This workout gear is from FashionNova. The set is so cute but there are some things I didn’t like. Though I love the colors and mesh stripes, the pants were super tight. Probably could have sized up on that one but FashionNova has horrible return policy so I gotta hate it before I send it back. Though I have no purpose for a zipper, it was kinda a cute detail to add. In the end, the pants still worked so alas, it stays.

The FashionNova sports bra on the other hand was huge and thus provided 0 support. If you are a 32 DDD then you may want to do a small. This is a medium (my typical size) and it was huge. To make this top work in real life, I wear a real sports bra underneath so I could save money from returning it but still look cute. I wore my typical workout shoes – Sketchers – from T.J. Maxx.

What has helped you all in your personal fitness journey? I could always use some tips so I can reach my goal this summer!

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