2015 Spring Transformation Challenge Runner-Up
*Results not typical
Eight years ago my husband and I were newly married and excited to start a family. However, after some time, we learned that our dream would be more difficult than we ever imagined. After three years of fertility treatments, numerous miscarriages, thousands of dollars, and countless tears, we were finally blessed with our first son. Fifteen months later, we were overjoyed with our second son. Not yet complete, our third son came but not without one more exhaustingly difficult and often heartbreaking round of fertility treatments. Finally, we had our family.
After years of physical and emotional highs and lows, my weight ballooned, and my unhealthy habits continued to get worse. Finally, just for good measure, I struggled with post-partum depression. Unproductive and disorganized, I knew my boys needed their mom and my husband needed his wife, but most importantly I wanted a healthier and more joyful existence.
Before the 90-Day Challenge my diet needed improvement. I would eat a healthy meal, but follow it up with my kids’ leftovers and something sweet. As for working out, I would go to the gym a few days a week but without a plan. I wandered around, mostly doing cardio. Admittedly, working out was not high on my priority list. Not only do my husband and I have three young sons, but we also own and operate two small businesses. Life is busy.
In January of 2015, I met with Brian McKinney, a trainer at Life Time. I started training with him one day per week. After a month, I was ready to step it up. I had always wanted to do the 90-Day Challenge and felt that this could be the push I needed to get the results I wanted. We formed a plan on day one to help me achieve my goal during the 90-Day Challenge. I made a commitment to working out with Brian one to two days per week, doing the Boot Camp team training three days per week, and adding in yoga whenever I could. I also met with a nutritionist to make changes to my diet and to get the supplements my body needed.
To get my workouts in, I had to get to the gym at 5 a.m. every morning. The first few weeks were tough, but eventually it became automatic. My diet was the biggest struggle. With the help of a nutritionist, I went on a very clean, balanced diet, cutting out gluten, dairy, sugar, and caffeine. In the morning, I began taking the UCAN, which really helped me power thru my workouts and followed it up with a post-workout protein shake and sensible breakfast.
It was hard to not lick the syrup off my kids’ plates!
A few weeks into the Challenge, my progress started to plateau, so I decided to do the food sensitivity test through Life Time. To my surprise, I was sensitive to eggs, almonds, brown rice, green peas, as well as all dairy and gluten. Eating became a real challenge. Thankfully, with the help of Samantha Bielawski (Life Time nutritionist) she helped me come up with great healthy alternatives, which made a huge difference for me. She also added more supplements.
To maintain my focus and motivation, I never took off the 90-Day wristband. I also took weekly pictures of myself to track my own progress. But hands down, my greatest motivator was my trainer Brian. He was knowledgeable, encouraging, and kept me focused in and out of the gym. There’s nothing like a text message from your trainer to kick you in the butt when you need it. He would switch up and tweak my workouts, as well as upping my weights and correcting my form. No two routines were the same. I cannot thank you enough, Brian, for constantly pushing me and providing me the support and encouragement I needed. You are excellent at what you do.
Also, thank you Joe Dabrowski and Brian McKinney for the awesome Boot Camp routines you created. They are always fun, slightly competitive, and very challenging. Boot Camp has taken my strength and endurance to a whole new level. The accountability of Boot Camp is huge, and the friendships formed are priceless. GO BOOT CAMP!!!
Before the 90-Day Challenge, I always thought of my belly as kind of my badge of honor. Now, I refer to it as my “Success Story.” This Challenge was the push I needed and has provided me a lifestyle change benefitting and strengthening my family, my business, my marriage, and my mental health. I not only look healthier, but I also FEEL AMAZING! Thank you Life Time Fitness for providing me this opportunity to change my life and for helping me find immeasurable joy.