Mike: Schedule Your Fitness Time, It Works!

The real secret for you to maintain a consistent fitness routine is putting it in your schedule and treat it like any other meeting you won’t miss.  To be consistent you must make it a part of your day like brushing your teeth or eating.  Today I want to introduce you to a great guy who did just that and it’s made a huge difference in Mike’s fitness and weight loss pursuit.  Take a quick read; this is Mike’s fitness story!

How long have you been exercising consistently?

10 months

What influenced your decision to get dedicated and be consistently active?

I saw the success that my wife was having and she pushed me to go and try it out.

How much weight/inches/jean sizes have you lost and what are the changes you’ve seen in yourself?

Since my highest weight, I have lost about 50 pounds.  I can also notice a huge difference in strength

What is your favorite thing about Boot Camp?  What Exercise most scared you at first?

My favorite thing about boot camp is the motivation and everyday is a different exercise.  The exercise that scared me at first was shadow boxing on Fridays.

Can you briefly tell me why you continue to do Boot Camp?

I continue to come to boot camp because I continue to see progress to overall better health.

What are some of your biggest barriers to staying active and how do you overcome those barriers?

My biggest barrier to staying active is finding the time in the day.  I overcome this by purposely not scheduling anything for the time that I go to boot camp. 

Since becoming consistent with your exercise, what’s the biggest change you see in yourself physically and mentally?

The biggest change that I see would be becoming stronger physically and mentally being willing to push myself harder on certain exercises.

How would you classify your current eating habits?

I just try and watch what I eat and don’t overindulge.

Do you have a specific diet/eating strategy that you follow?

I try to eat a larger breakfast, smaller lunch, and something healthy at night.

Do you have a favorite go to healthy meal or food?

Grilled Chicken Salad

Do you have advice for someone contemplating starting a fitness/weight loss journey or advice for someone struggling to stay motivated?

Don’t be scared!  Everyone at boot camp is friendly and is willing to help out.

I want to thank Mike for sharing his story with us today and want to hammer home a few great points Mike made in his story.  First, like I said at the top if you want to be successful at getting fit or losing weight you must schedule your fitness time and not let anything interfere.  You must make it a priority.  Second, don’t let fear prevent you from attending Boot Camp or any other fitness program that will help you get results.  Everyone’s pursuing the same goal and would love to help you and see you succeed.  The real key to weight loss is your diet.  You must pay attention to everything you eat to include serving sizes.  If you’re serious about losing weight and keeping it off nothing is off the table (count your carbs) but you must be careful to watch serving sizes and not over indulge.  You can do this just like Mike, take action and get started TODAY!

Jodi: Strength is Confidence

Consistency is the key to being successful with any endeavor.  Your health is no exception.  If you want great health you must consistently work on habits that build great health.  Today I want you to meet one of the most consistent, hard working and determined ladies I know.  Jodi has consistently attended Boot Camp for 2 years and in that time she had gotten stronger, dropped inches and improved her health.  This is Jodi’s fitness story!

How long have you been exercising consistently?

My TWO year anniversary at Expect Results fitness is this month!!  I have also always been a walker. I love a good, brisk walk.

What influenced your decision to get dedicated and be consistently active?

I really wanted to get stronger.  I wanted to strengthen my upper body and core. I was almost 50 when I joined ERF, and was beginning to feel my age. I just didn’t feel as confident and steady as I used to.  I want to be sure I stay fit and strong as I grow older.

How much weight/inches/jean sizes have you lost, how much stronger are you and what are the changes you’ve seen in yourself?

At first I dropped about 10 pounds, and a few inches.  However, I have added some of the pounds back. I know some of it is muscle, but some is that unwanted weight. I battle the carbs in my diet.  My strength has improved so much! I am lifting more than I ever thought I could. My clothes fit so much better.  And what a boost of confidence I have gained!

What is your favorite thing about Boot Camp?  What Exercise most scared you at first?

I love walking in and having a planned workout.  And it doesn’t matter what class I attend, I love the people.  ERF is such a great place to work out.  Dead lift probably intimidated me the most, but now it challenges me the most. I think I started at 75 pounds, and now I am lifting 145 at most.

Can you briefly tell me why you continue to do Boot Camp?

I have great support and encouragement at the gym, and I am having success and seeing results.

What are some of your biggest barriers to staying active and how do you overcome those barriers?

I think the biggest barrier was just getting started, but now it is a great habit. I cannot stand to miss!!!

Since becoming consistent with your exercise, what’s the biggest change you see in yourself physically and mentally?

I have definitely improved my overall strength. I feel so much better physically and mentally.

I feel better in my clothes.  And again, I have had a great boost in my confidence.

How would you classify your current eating habits?  (Great, Good, Bad, or Ugly)

I think my eating habits are good. I do enjoy eating a variety of foods, including occasional desserts (sometimes often). But at least I am working out and trying to monitor my diet.

Do you have a specific diet/eating strategy that you follow?

I try to eat more proteins, vegetables and fruits and practice portion control.  I try to limit my breads and sugar.

Do you have a favorite go to healthy meal or food?

Baked chicken and roasted vegetables.

Do you have advice for someone contemplating starting a fitness/weight loss journey or advice for someone struggling to stay motivated?

Find something you enjoy, stick with it, and find a buddy to join you. Join ERF, and go as much as you can!

I want to thank Jodi for sharing her story and insight with us.  Three things I want all of you to make sure and take away from her story.  Improving physical strength improves confidence.  If you’re a lady and have never lifted weights I encourage you to give it a try.  You will not believe the confidence you gain both physically and mentally form being physically strong.  Number two, the biggest problem for many people contemplating starting and diet and exercise program is getting started.  Don’t procrastinate; the time for change is now!  Stop reading right now and do 20 squats!  See you’ve started now get consistent.  Number three, find a friend that needs your support and help each other.  It’s easier to obtain a goal as a team.  Grab a friend or three and be accountability for each other.  You can do this and we would love to help!

Jennifer: The Scale Doesn’t Tell The Whole Story!

Physical set backs are one of the top things that derail fat loss goals.  This tenacious lady would not let a sprained foot early on in her fitness journey stop her progress.  She would strap on her boot and come to boot camp modifying anything that she couldn’t physically do because of her foot.  Due to her never quit attitude and her commitment to diet she has quickly seen some incredible results.  This is Jennifer’s story!

How long have you been exercising consistently?

Approximately 3.5 months

What influenced your decision to get dedicated and be consistently active?

To feel better, feel more confident and to increase energy so I can keep up with my teenagers.

How much weight/inches/jean sizes have you lost?

I have lost two jean sizes since starting boot camp.

What are the changes you’ve seen in yourself?

I barely made it through my first week and now I can do 2 classes a day.  I am definitely more confident and happier.

What is your favorite thing about Boot Camp?

My favorite thing about boot camp is the people!  I love the energy and not knowing what we are doing each day.

What Exercise most scared you at first?

The row scared me the most, I thought I might fall. 

Can you briefly tell me why you continue to do Boot Camp?

I continue doing Boot Camp because it’s like come to see family every day. 

What are some of your biggest barriers to staying active and how do you overcome those barriers?

I would say time and my proximity to the gym.  I’ve overcome this by making it a part of my day both on my way to work and on my way home.

Since becoming consistent with your exercise, what’s the biggest change you see in yourself physically and mentally?

Mentally, I am more focused and able to handle stress better.  Physically, I am stronger, have more endurance and can make it through the day without being sleepy.

How would you classify your current eating habits?

Great!  I truly love the Keto diet/lifestyle.

Do you have a specific diet/eating strategy that you follow?

Keto

Do you have a favorite go to healthy meal or food?

Sugar free iced white mocha and low carb pancakes.

Do you have advice for someone contemplating starting a fitness/weight loss journey or advice for someone struggling to stay motivated?

Consistency and commitment are the keys.  Think of it as a lifestyle and don’t worry about the scale it doesn’t tell the whole story.  Don’t be fearful, try everything and modify as needed.

I want to thank Jennifer for sharing her story with us and want to point out a few things that might provide others with motivation.  First, Jennifer mentioned that she has currently lost 2 jean sizes and said not to worry about the scale.  If you’re working hard in the weight room your scale weight will not decrease the way you want it to but you will be improving the health of your metabolism and you will lose inches and jean sizes.  Second, she mentioned several times about the people being one of her favorite things about boot camp.  A strong support system that motivates, encourages and holds you accountable are important to success.  Find that encouraging support system.  Last, one of the best things you can do for your mental health is get active and get strong.  Current research tells us that the stronger you become physically the more confident you become.  Improve your physical strength to increase your mental strength, the two go hand in hand.  You have what it takes to meet any goal you want to set.  The real key is being like Jennifer and not let anything get in the way of you taking action every day!

Scott: Best Shape I’ve Been In 25 Years!

Today I want to introduce you to a great gentleman who loves to fly.  Scott is a retired Air National Guard pilot who instructs our young up and coming American heroes in the simulators at Little Rock AFB.  Scott is one of our most consistent Boot Campers along with his lovely wife Teresa.  He consistently pushes himself to get stronger and in return is turning back father time.  This is Scott’s fitness story!

How long have you been exercising consistently?

10 months.

What influenced your decision to get dedicated and be consistently active?

To feel better about myself, lose weight and encouragement from my wife.

How much weight/inches/jean sizes have you lost?

Gone from size 38 to 34.

How much stronger are you?

I’m a lot stronger.

What is your favorite thing about Boot Camp?

Consistency and encouragement.

What Exercise most scared you at first?

Crunches.

Can you briefly tell me why you continue to do Boot Camp?

I am encouraged by my progress and want to stay healthy. 

What are some of your biggest barriers to staying active and how do you overcome those barriers?

I get distracted with other things. I make it a priority to exercise and am encouraged by my wife. 

Since becoming consistent with your exercise, what’s the biggest change you see in yourself physically and mentally?

My blood pressure has gone from around 140/85 to 115/70.  I’ve lost 25 pounds and feel much better about myself.  Best shape I’ve been in 25 years!

How would you classify your current eating habits?

Good. 

Do you have a specific diet/eating strategy that you follow?

Advocare products and cut way down on carbs and have increased protein. 

Do you have a favorite go to healthy meal or food?

I love chicken any way you serve it. 

Do you have advice for someone contemplating starting a fitness/weight loss journey or advice for someone struggling to stay motivated?

Get started now! Don’t wait. Shop wisely for food and build good habits.  

I want to thank Scott for sharing his fitness story with all of us.  I have a couple of things I want you to take away from his story.  First, he talks about the support and encouragement he gets from his wife.  This goes back to the importance of a strong support system, it may be your wife, sister or best friend but a strong support system is essential to success.  Second, he talks about success in things other than weight loss.  Scott mentions his clothes size and his blood pressure improving.  Fitness success can come in many forms.  Last, Scott talks about shopping wisely and building good habits.  The most important thing you can do is educate yourself about food and make the best choice possible no matter where you eat.  Whether it’s McDonalds or at home you always have the ability to make better choices that moves you closer to your goal.  Learn to count carbs and make great food choices every day.  Once again I want to thank Scott for sharing and encourage him to keep up the good work!

 

Cathy: I Never Thought I Could Be This Strong!

Today I want to introduce you to one of the friendliest ladies you’ll ever meet.  Cathy started attending Boot Camp almost one year ago today and has lost pounds, inches and gotten stronger.  She is never intimidated by anything and is always ready for a new challenge.  Cathy attends the lunch time class most days and is an encouragement to everyone.  This is Cathy’s fitness story!

How long have you been exercising consistently?

It will be 1 year on August 18th.

What influenced your decision to get dedicated and be consistently active?

Multiple friends invited me and I knew I needed to do something now that I’m in my 50s.

How much weight/jean sizes have you lost and how much stronger are you?   What are the changes you’ve seen in yourself?

I’ve lost 40 lbs and 2 jean sizes.  In addition, I’m much stronger than I’ve ever been in my life and more confident and outgoing.

What is your favorite thing about Boot Camp?  What Exercise most scared you at first?

I enjoy the feeling the exercise gives.  Meeting new challenges.  Surprising myself with what I’m able to do.  Lunges!!

Can you briefly tell me why you continue to do Boot Camp?

It gets me out of the house and active and having a good friend to do it with makes it much easier.

What are some of your biggest barriers to staying active and how do you overcome those barriers?

My eye spasm issues, but the understanding of my friends and your staff have made it more manageable. 

Since becoming consistent with your exercise, what’s the biggest change you see in yourself physically and mentally?

Physically much stronger and able to do things I never thought I could.  The weight loss has been life changing plus I have more energy and confidence.

How would you classify your current eating habits?

I eat much healthier than before I began.

Do you have a specific diet/eating strategy that you follow?

Cutting carbs and sugars and eating high quality protein.

Do you have advice for someone contemplating starting a fitness/weight loss journey or advice for someone struggling to stay motivated?

Take it one day at a time and find a buddy that will call you every day to keep you motivated and share your struggles with.

I want to personally thank Cathy for sharing her story and want to touch on a few things we can all take away from Cathy.  Number one, having a workout buddy can never be ignored.  If you and a friend are serious about losing weight and getting fit, doing it together is the real secret to success.  NOTHING helps you more than having a workout/accountability buddy!  Number two; always be willing to take on new things.  Never let anything scare you or keep you from confronting the challenge in front of you.  Cathy is always willing to try anything and always does it with a great attitude which brings me to point number three.  Most people experiencing the physical problems Cathy has experienced over the past 6 months would have thrown up their hands and quit.  Some days Cathy struggles to keep her eyes open enough to see what she’s doing due to her eye spasms.  Cathy is an over comer and doesn’t allow anything to slow her down or stop her progression.  If you have been telling yourself that you CAN’T get fit or lose weight because of this or that, STOP letting YOUR excuses win and become and over comer TODAY!

Vanessa: Once Exercise Becomes a Habit It’s Easy!

There is more than one way to get fit and not every style fits everyone.  Today I want to introduce you to a Wonder Woman named Vanessa.  If you spend any time with Vanessa you can tell she is leader who leads with action and not words.  Vanessa’s pretty quiet but when the workouts begin she attacks them with focus and intensity.  She’s been working out for years on her own which takes dedication and commitment and has added Fitness Boot Camp to her regimen for a little socialization.  This is Vanessa’s story!

How long have you been exercising consistently?

I have been exercising for about 13 years.  I started out buying just about every workout video there is.  I got all kinds of exercise equipment and worked out at home.  I would get up at 4:30 every morning so I could work out before work. 

What influenced your decision to get dedicated and be consistently active?

I wanted to get healthy and that was the way to do it. 

How much weight/inches/jean sizes have you lost or/and how much stronger are you?  What are the changes you’ve seen in yourself?

 I have gained muscle and I can do things now that I couldn’t do before.   I have so much more energy too. 

What is your favorite thing about Boot Camp?  What Exercise most scared you at first?

What I love about boot camp is being around a group of people with the same goals.  It helps motivate me to continue to push forward.  Battle ropes, boy, I hated battle ropes!  Now, they are just a challenge that I was able to overcome. 

Can you briefly tell me why You continue to do Boot Camp?

I continue boot camp because it allows me a set time of the day to recharge and not think about anything else.  It allows me to focus on me and being fit. 

What are some of your biggest barriers to staying active and how do you overcome those barriers?

I got married last year and we stay on the run constantly.  It’s easy to let our busy schedule override staying active.  Boot camp helps with that a lot because I can work out during my lunch break.  If I miss boot camp at lunch because of my work schedule, it’s easy to make an excuse not to work out when I get home.  I’ve recently started overcoming that barrier by working out in my office when I can’t make it to boot camp.    

Since becoming consistent with your exercise, what’s the biggest change you see in yourself physically and mentally?

The biggest change physically is I’ve gotten more toned and gained more muscle.  The change mentally would be that inner voice telling me to push.  She can be pretty tough sometimes.   

How would you classify your current eating habits?

I would say good.  I manage to do okay at breakfast and lunch during the week.  Its supper and meals on the weekends that is more difficult.  My husband and I have different eating habits.  It makes it difficult preparing meals for two people.  I’m hoping I’ll win him over to the healthy eating side one of these days. 

Do you have a specific diet/eating strategy that you follow?

When I’m doing better on my eating, I choose clean eating strategy.  No processed foods. 

Do you have a favorite go to healthy meal or food?

Spinach salad with goat cheese, berries and almonds.

Do you have advice for someone contemplating starting a fitness/weight loss journey or advice for someone struggling to stay motivated?

Do it.  Don’t make excuses.  Just do it.  Once you get started and it becomes a habit it gets easier.  You’ll have set backs, but don’t let that stop you.  Get back up and start again. 

If you workout consistently you have a fitness story whether you have 100 lbs to lose or 0.  I want to thank Vanessa for sharing her story!  In addition, a couple things we can all take away.  Number one, whether you use workout videos, run or do boot camp the type of workout doesn’t matter.  It’s all about being consistent with the style that best fits YOU!  Number two, having fitness time allows you to focus on YOU.  Too many people neglect themselves until they are in poor health both physically and mentally.  Fitness time allows you to enhance both.  Number three, when you are in a family that has different eating styles the best thing you can do is fix meals that both will eat.  The easiest way to win someone over to healthy eating is preparing healthy choices mixed with the things they like to eat.  It may take a little time, but they will eventually try the healthy choices and find they’re not as bad as they think.  We’ve done this for years at my house and it allows everyone to eat what they like without straining relationships.  Once again I want to thank Vanessa for sharing and I hope her story inspires you to find your way to fitness.

Kim: Take That First Step And Never Stop

Today I want to introduce you to an awesome lady named Kim.  She was one of the first people to join Fitness Boot Camp when we opened.  She overcame her intimidation of weight training and as a result has lost weight, inches and has gotten really strong.  In addition, Kim has a background in martial arts and boy, can that girl kick!  This incredible working wife and mom makes time to get/stay fit every week.  This is her fitness story!

How long have you been exercising consistently?

About two years now.

What influenced your decision to get dedicated and be consistently active?

I had not exercised in a long time and a friend from work invited me to try Expect Results Fitness shortly after it opened. My first work out I realized how horribly out of shape I was! I didn’t like that feeling and that’s when I realized I needed to take better care of my body.

How much weight/inches/jean sizes have you lost?  Or/and how much stronger are you? Or what are the changes you’ve seen in yourself?

Over that time I’ve lost over 20 pounds! I haven’t gone down too much in my jean size, but I can definitely see that my clothes fit so much better, and I feel more confident in them. I feel so much stronger as well! I would’ve never thought I could deadlift and squat over 100 pounds!

What is your favorite thing about Boot Camp?  What Exercise most scared you at first?

I love the variety in each day. If you attend a few times a week you can really work out your entire body. I would have to say the weights were the most intimidating to me. But I’ve kept increasing my weight gradually and can’t believe where I’m at now!

Can you briefly tell me why you continue to do Boot Camp?

I feel so much better after I work out! There are times when I just can’t make it to a class due to my schedule, and if I miss so many days I can really tell a difference in my energy level. It’s also a huge motivation to continue when I can see the results of my eating and work out choices.

What are some of your biggest barriers to staying active and how do you overcome those barriers?

I would say my biggest barrier for staying active is taking the time to do it. When you work all day you just want to come home and spend time with your family and relax. I try to work out as much as I can on my lunch break, or I go right after work before heading home. I know if I don’t do that, when I get home something will come up or I’ll convince myself I’m too tired.

Since becoming consistent with your exercise, what’s the biggest change you see in yourself physically and mentally?

I definitely have more confidence in how I look and just feel better and healthier. I also feel very proud of myself when I meet a goal I’ve set and have a stronger will power to make better choices for myself.

How would you classify your current eating habits?

It depends on the day…it’s harder when I’m taken out of my normal environment, like if we go over to a friend’s house or if we have a birthday party or something. Overall I would say my eating habits are good though.

Do you have a specific diet/eating strategy that you follow?

I really try to stick with low carb options and limit my desserts, which was very hard at first because I love pasta, rice, and sweets!! But again, once I saw the results of how much better I felt when I don’t eat those types of foods it helps me when I have to make that choice.

Do you have a favorite go to healthy meal or food?

I love pasta dishes! So I’m really enjoying substituting that with spaghetti squash, zucchini noodles, or eggplant when I feel like that type of dish.

Do you have advice for someone contemplating starting a fitness/weight loss journey or advice for someone struggling to stay motivated?

Just try it! Taking that first step is hard, and until you actually try it you won’t see what you’re missing out on. I had no idea how out of shape I was or how horrible my diet made me feel until I started working out and watched what I ate. When you see the difference in what you can feel like you probably won’t want to go back to the way you were before.

I want to thank Kim for sharing her story and would like to point out a few things all of us can learn from.  First, getting fit and staying fit requires you to schedule it into your day.    Whether you exercise early in the morning, at lunch or after work it must be a part of your daily schedule and become a habit.  If you make it home and its not been accomplished there is a 95% chance it won’t get done.  Second, ditching the sugar and simple carbs is not only the key to weight loss but the key to feeling better.  If you have swings in your energy and mood changing your diet will make all the difference.  Start slowly counting and lowering that total carb intake.  Last, overcome your intimidation to weight training and start getting stronger.  Strength instills confidence from every aspect of your life.  Get in the weight room and start getting strong inside and out.  Again thank you Kim for sharing your story.  I hope her story inspires you to get in the game and start your journey to a better YOU!

Braci: Can You Spare 2% of Your Day for YOUR Health?

Today I want to introduce you to an exceptional young lady who just graduated high school in May.  Braci started attending Boot Camp a little over a year ago and we’re going to miss her this fall as she heads off to college.  Braci impresses me because she is/was a high school student who came to boot camp consistently 4-5 times per week by herself.  It’s a big deal when someone her age puts a priority on health and fitness when so many other things compete for her time.  In addition, she’s been willing to try things out of her comfort zone and as a result’s gotten stronger and cut fat.  This is Braci’s fitness story!

How long have you been exercising consistently?

One year.

What influenced your decision to get dedicated and be consistently active?

I was unhappy with myself physically.  A friend introduced me to workout classes and lifting weights. I immediately fell in love with it!

How much weight/inches/jean sizes have you lost?  Or/and how much stronger are you? Or what are the changes you’ve seen in yourself?

I’ve lost around 10 pounds and went from a size 6 to a 2.  The change was so gradual, I didn’t even notice at first! In the beginning I could only do a few push-ups, but now I can do as many as the timer allows. I can also lift a lot heavier and squat heavier. I did not take measurements unfortunately. 

What is your favorite thing about Boot Camp?  What Exercise most scared you at first?

My favorite thing about Boot Camp is the people!  Everyone is so friendly and helpful.   Dead lifts scared me, but they aren’t too bad after all. 

Can you briefly tell me why you continue to do Boot Camp?

My results are too great to not show up for class.  I know I won’t feel my best if I don’t attend.  My sleep schedule has evened out from exercising too.  I will be so sad when I leave for college and can’t come anymore!

What are some of your biggest barriers to staying active and how do you overcome those barriers?

Just being lazy, but it’s a part of my everyday routine now. It only takes a short amount of time out of my day. I feel great afterwards so there is no reason not to. 

Since becoming consistent with your exercise, what’s the biggest change you see in yourself physically and mentally?

I finally have abs on my clean eating days, which is so exciting for me!! This is the smallest and most fit I’ve ever been!  

How would you classify your current eating habits?

Good, but sometimes McDonald’s just gets me Ha Ha.

Do you have a specific diet/eating strategy that you follow?

I drink a breakfast shake in the mornings and eat small snacks throughout the day to keep my metabolism up. I only keep healthy foods in my fridge, so I have nothing else to reach for. In general, I try to stay away from fast food. 

Do you have a favorite go to healthy meal or food?

Sushi, chicken salads, yogurt, or any type of fruit are my favorites.  Halo top ice cream is also the best!

Do you have advice for someone contemplating starting a fitness/weight loss journey or advice for someone struggling to stay motivated?

I suggest starting out with a workout partner.  Once I got comfortable with everything I was perfectly fine by myself!  You have nothing to lose but the weight!  A great way to think about it is that a thirty minute workout is only 2% of your entire day.

 I want to thank Braci for sharing her story.  Reading her story made me think of three things I want to share with all of you.  First, being skinny doesn’t mean healthy.  Healthy is a combination of eating right and being strong and has very little to do with your size.  Second, whether you want to lose 100 lbs or 10 lbs the process is long term and a life time of commitment.  There are no shortcuts regardless of where you are in your journey the key to getting results is  being consistent every day.  As many of you have told me after vacations it’s much easier to lose fitness than gain it.  Last, is something I never thought about until Braci put it in her closing remarks, 30 minutes is only about 2% of your day.  Can YOU spare 2% of each day for your health?  If you don’t currently, I hope you will consider it.  Your health will thank you for it!

Anna: The Only Bad Workout is the One You Didn’t Do!

Today I want to introduce you to a lady who’s a go getter, never meets a stranger, motivates everyone around her and is very direct.  (I like direct)  Anna was one of my first Boot Campers when I opened back in 2015.  I’ll never forget that 5:50 P.M. class.  They pushed each other hard and had a great time while doing it.  Anna did great until the Holidays 2015 and she disappeared.  In July of 2016 Anna reappeared with a ferociousness I hadn’t seen before.  She attacked workouts and started changing her diet and before long I would look out at the group working out and I remember thinking who’s the new lady doing squats.  It wasn’t a new lady, it was a shrinking Anna!  This is Anna’s story:

How long have you been exercising consistently?

I’ve been at it since the end of last July (2016) this time.   I actually started in April 2015-December 2015 and well…..the holidays lasted about 7 months.

What influenced your decision to get dedicated and be consistently active?

I finally got tired of my size.  I quit smoking 3 years ago and gained around 70lbs.  When I started to wear sweatpants everyday because of nothing else fitting, it was time for a change. 

How much weight/inches/jean sizes have you lost?

I’ve lost around 55lbs.  I’ve gone from a 22 in jeans (at my biggest) to a current size 10/12.   

How much stronger are you?

When I started I couldn’t do 1 normal pushup and maybe 5 chair jumps.  Now I can do about 7 in row pushups and haven’t counted chair jumps but it’s definitely more than 5.

What all do you do to stay active?

Expect Fitness Results boot camp and this crazy notion to run a marathon. 

What are some of your biggest barriers to staying active and how do you overcome those barriers?

My biggest barriers are injuries and sometimes just plain don’t want too.  I’ve learned with injuries that it is ok to rest.  If you don’t you won’t be doing anything.  As far as the don’t want to….That’s when I always try to go.  I know that’s when I need to be active the most.

Since becoming consistent with your exercise, what’s the biggest change you see in yourself physically and mentally?

My endurance and my mental state, LOL.  Exercising is truly cheaper than therapy. 

How would you classify your current eating habits?

Right now, it’s a toss-up between good and bad.  LOL

Do you have a specific diet/eating strategy that you follow?

Specifically, I try to NOT to eat breads, pastas, etc.  I love proteins and fats.  I struggle with getting good carbs (veggies).   I also eat a lot of tuna and chicken salads.

Do you have a favorite go to healthy meal or food?

I love cauliflower cheese sticks, spaghetti squash pizza, and chicken with a slice of bacon, shredded cheese and guacamole (for Lunch). 

Do you have advice for someone contemplating starting a fitness/weight loss journey or advice for someone struggling to stay motivated?

For someone starting a fitness journey just do what you can.  We all have been there and no one will ever judge you because you can only do 5 push-ups.  We are happy to see you coming and trying.  Once you get over the soreness work on progressing.  Advice to someone struggling to stay motivated: The days you don’t want to do it the most are the days you need to DO IT the most.  We all struggle from day to day, week to week.  “The only bad workout is the one that didn’t happen.”

I want to thank Anna for sharing.  Several things you can take from Anna if you’re thinking about starting a weight loss program.  Number one, if you’ve ever started and quit it’s never too late to return.  As Anna’s shown the second time is a charm!  Number two, it’s not about where you start your fitness journey but about the progress you make.  If you can only do two push-ups right now, in two months you’ll be able to do 10, 15, or 50 it’s all up to YOU!  Number three, make yourself go on the days you don’t want to.  Even if you crawl through it, the only bad workout is the one that didn’t happen.  Last, attack your workouts and diet with the ferociousness of a LION!  The intensity you approach a goal with will determine how quick you see results.  Thanks again to Anna for sharing her fitness story.  If you’ve been thinking about starting your own fitness journey I hope Anna’s story inspires you to get started!

Hema: Balancing Health and Family

Today I want to introduce you to one of the most focused, dedicated and nicest ladies I know.  I met Hema back in 2015 when she started attending Boot Camp at lunch time.  Not long after she started she learned she was expecting her second child and had to take a break.  Since the arrival of her beautiful baby boy she has shown everyone what you can do post-pregnancy dropping weight, inches and getting stronger than ever.  This is Hema’s fitness story!

How long have you been exercising consistently?

I have been exercising for a little over a year.

What influenced your decision to get dedicated and be consistently active?

I feel so much better when I exercise!

How much weight/inches/jean sizes have you lost?  Or/and how much stronger are you?

I have lost over 20 pounds and 15 inches overall, down three jean sizes since I started!

What all do you do to stay active?

I committed to boot camp at least four times a week, I jog two days a week and my kiddos and I  dance almost every night for at least 20 minutes!

What are some of your biggest barriers to staying active and how do you overcome those barriers?

Making the time is the most difficult for me.  I love getting it out of my way on my lunch hour so I do not take away from my family time before or after work.

Since becoming consistent with your exercise, what’s the biggest change you see in yourself physically and mentally?

The biggest change that I have noticed is my energy level, I feel so much better and I can work through a day without falling asleep, physically I notice clothing sizes shrinking.

How would you classify your current eating habits?

My eating habits are good for the most part.

Do you have a specific diet/eating strategy that you follow?

I have cut back on my portion sizes drastically and cut back on processed foods and carbs.

Do you have a favorite go to healthy meal or food?

Zucchini lasagna is one of my new favorite dishes.

Do you have advice for someone contemplating starting a fitness/weight loss journey or advice for someone struggling to stay motivated?

Start with an accountability partner! Usually having someone to motivate you and hold you accountable helps initially until you build a new routine for yourself.  Once you get hooked you will be good to go!

I want to thank Hema for sharing her story.  I always like to highlight a couple of take aways from every person story and Hema’s is no different.  Number one, Hema uses her lunch break to work out so it doesn’t take away from her family time in the evening.  Staying fit and healthy is important and you must find the right balance with staying fit and family time.  Hema’s found that balance.  Number two, working out and eating right helps maintain her energy level so she can power through her day.  Remember exercise + eating right = energy!  Number three, is a common theme with all of our fitness stories, having a friend or friends who work out with you helps maintain motivation and accountability.  A workout partner or partners is essential to success!  I’m glad to have Hema as a part of the lunchtime boot camp crew and again thank you for sharing your story!