My fitness journey has been a long one to say the least. It’s been a yo-yo of programs, gyms, and dedication. When it comes to fitness, I think finding the time or a routine seems to be the determining factor of your success. As we get older, that gets harder. Jobs, kids, family, among hundreds of other reasons make finding that time to dedicate to ourselves and health harder and harder to come by.
I didn’t really ever enjoy working out until I was 19 and discovered Zumba. I did enjoy swimming in high school, but that was the extent of my athleticism. Zumba was right up my alley with the whole dancing, shaking your ass, and upbeat music. It never felt like I was working out and all the hip-swaying made me feel sexy. I enjoyed it so much that I became a certified Zumba instructor. I taught for about a year, maybe longer, and then life happened and I kinda phased it out. I would join a class every now and again, but it faded out of my life and when Zumba faded out, so did my health. That’s when I started stacking on the pounds. I was eating like I still had the metabolism of a high-schooler but not countering it with caloric burn. To be honest, now that I sit here and really think about it, I don’t think I did any other exercise until after my son was born. I do remember a time that I thought I had the dedication to do P90X, but I think I made it through 3 workouts and said, “yeah, fuck that.”
I gained the weight and recall doing Weight Watchers to shed the pounds, which DID work. But that was like 3 programs of theirs ago. I didn’t have success once they changed it from what I did. I was grateful that when I did it, I did get to my goal and was happy with my body. I think I was still doing Weight Watchers when I met my husband.
When you start dating someone at first, you obviously make sure you’re paying yourself attention to keep your physical appearance in check. You know, shaving your legs all the time, doing your make-up, dressing all cute. It’s that comfortability stage where you break out the sweat pants, go a few days in-between showers, and let your leg hair grow out nearly long enough to kit a sweater from. Well, this also went for my health. Cooking hearty meals, going out to eat, snacking on the couch watching movies. It catches up to you. I slowly started to put the pounds back on and my future husband started to do the same. We decided to give the Advocare program a shot. It was mostly nutritionally focused, and they didn’t emphasize the fitness until halfway through if I remember right. We were killing it on the nutrition, and my then-boyfriend was a beast at the gym. I went with him and he guided me through some weight-training exercises and I tried to keep up but at the end of the program I didn’t have incredible results. I think I gave up at that point.
That brings you up to speed with my fitness expertise until after my first pregnancy.
I was overweight to begin with when I got pregnant with my son, Oliver. I may have only gained 20 pounds the whole pregnancy, but when you’re starting it at 174lbs, that gets you up there. It was the heaviest I had ever been in my life and I all but expected it to melt off when I began breastfeeding. When someone tells you that breastfeeding will make all the weight you gained disappear, they’re a fucking liar. Yeah, that may work for some people, but I was most definitely not one of them. I didn’t lose shit from breastfeeding except my perky boobs. About 5 months postpartum I decided to start working on my health again.
I don’t like gyms. I don’t like working out in front of people. I’m a mom and it’s tough as shit to load up kids and bring to a gym that provides childcare. Not to mention the additional cost those gyms typically have for that service. That’s the beauty of in-home workouts. If you have the determination to follow through with them, their convenience can be the key to your success. Insert 21 Day Fix.
21 Day Fix is a Beachbody Program that is just as it sounds – 21 days. I’ll type up a separate post delving into it more. It’s 7, 30-minute workout videos you repeat for 3 weeks, each focusing on a different aspect. 30-minutes is easy to squeeze in during nap-time! You only need some basic weights and a mat. They pair the workouts with their nutrition plan. They have this fancy container system they use and you get an allotment of each color (depending on which meal plan you fall into) which corresponds to category of food like protein, fats, etc. I don’t remember which meal plan I did but I do remember weighing and measuring religiously. The videos were easy to get in albeit challenging. It showed me just how out of shape I was. I did it with a friend and we were constantly texting each other food ideas and encouragement so it definitely gave me the motivation to get through the program. I finished one round of it and though I lost weight, it wasn’t nearly what I expected from all the testimonials I had seen. I decided to do another round of the program but not use the containers and count calories.
First off, counting calories fucking sucks. You have to try and juggle your entire day’s food to keep you satiated and not counting the minutes until you eat again because you don’t have a ton to work with. It makes me incredibly bitchy, but it works nonetheless. When I started counting calories and doing the 21DF workouts, I started seeing the changes I was looking for. I saw that pre-mom bod coming back that I had missed. After finishing the second round, I kept focusing on the nutrition and lost the rest of my weight that way. I stopped my workouts altogether though.
Fast forward now to February of this year. I had my daughter, Reagan, in July of 2017. I started keto when I was 6 month pregnant but fell off the keto wagon until October 2017. Even though I was losing weight from doing keto alone, it wasn’t the progress I was wanting. I was looking to boost my results so I knew I needed to start working out again. I wanted to do 21DF again, but ease into it. I started with Country Heat. It’s another Beachbody program that is exercise moves emphasized through line-dancing to popular country hits. I’m a country gal so I knew this was going to be love. I started doing the 30-minute dance videos during my daughter’s nap-time. My son just turned 3 so he was able to entertain himself with his tablet, toys, playdoh etc. while I squeezed this in. Once I had upped my endurance a bit, I decided to do 21 Day Fix again. I was curious how my results were going to be since I was doing keto now. I started my first round on March 2nd with a group of my online women-friends. I weighed in at 164.1 and at the end of the first round I only lost 4 lbs, but I lost 3 pant sizes. Look at this difference!
I started a second round of 21DF with the same group of ladies on March 26th and at the end of the second round I lost another 5lbs, but again, more inches. Once I finished the second round I was feeling strong enough to entertain doing 80 Day Obsession. There is a lead-in week of workouts to get you prepared called “A Little Obsessed.” I did that the week between ending my second round of 21DF and beginning 80DO.
This brings us to current day. I started 80 Day Obsession on April 23rd. Today I finished day 52 of the 80 days. I am over halfway there and can I just say I am OBSESSED! I feel strong, I feel healthy, I am happy. This program is all sorts of amazing. You’ve probably seen my Instagram posts with my workout summaries on my Apple Watch and sweaty selfies. Boy do you sweat. But let me tell you, I don’t miss a workout. I look forward to getting them in. I look forward to day 80 when I can scream “I DID IT!” This program is killer and gives you such a sense of accomplishment for how much you see yourself grow workout-to-workout. I’m going to write an entire post dedicated to 80DO and all it entails, so keep a watch out for it.
So, you see, we all struggle. Fitness is hard. Finding time, it’s hard. But you owe it to yourself to prove just how strong you are, mentally and physically. Push yourself to see what your limits are, you’ll be shocked at what you can do. You won’t regret working out and getting fit. Sure, it may suck in the moment when you’re convincing yourself of one more rep, one more mile, one more minute, but when you’re done for the day, you won’t regret what you did. Do it for yourself. I’m here rooting you on.