One of the things that gets me the most upset is when I have someone tell me or I hear through the grapevine via a friend that the person doesn’t want to do, Fit Fun Bootcamps, MamaTone, or Fit Moms For Life DVDs because they aren’t in good enough shape for it. To me that is a slap in my face and my trainers faces, basically saying that they don’t think we can provide modifications and a workout that can be tailored to meet any fitness level.
It is usually just someone’s feeble attempts to put blame on someone other than themselves. The truth is pretty much anyone can participate in my programs and have amazing results… the only ones would be those with very bad joint issues. What makes me even more frustrated is when these people keep complaining to me and their friends that their jeans don’t fit them any more, they don’t have energy, and they have no motivation.
Next time I hear or you hear this weak excuse, plop them don’t next to a computer and have them read Crystals story. I met Crystal about 5 years ago a church and has had a contagious personality that everyone loved, but she also was morbidly obese and was carrying so much weight, that is would most certainly have killed her much earlier than she deserved to live. About 4 years later, do my delight, Crystal came in to my bootcamp, I was so excited to see her and was hoping she was going to take it seriously. That first week or two was a struggle as the scale didn’t change much, but her intensity and desire never waivered. I remember telling her when she was a little discouraged, trust the system and the program and give it time, in one year you will have a new body. Well it has been about 9 months so far and she definitely is transforming into her new body. I will let Crystal take the story from here.
Every time I run into someone I haven’t seen in a long time, they
exclaim, “You look great!” I chuckle and graciously accept the
complement because I know what’s coming next. They lower their voice,
almost to a whisper, and say, so “what did you do? What’s your
I respond, in a similarly lowered voice, “You know everything they
tell you regarding eating right and exercising?”
Eagerly, they say, “yeah…”
“I did it.”
“Yep, I changed what I ate drastically and I started exercising
vigorously. It took lots of time, but I have been able to lose 61lbs
and 5 dress sizes and keep it off by making changes that are no longer
‘changes’ but part of my normal life. I know that I have to exercise
most days of the week for the rest of my life. Good thing I like to
“I don’t think I can do that…it’s too hard.”
“It is hard but it is doable—anything worth having is hard work, right?
That’s how many conversations go regarding the life transformation I
am experiencing. In most of those conversations, there is never time
to discuss what, specifically, I did/am doing, so here I will take the
time to share the most important life changes I made to get to where I
I decided, for me, when enough was enough: when I was tired of looking
at an unhappy me in the mirror. This happened for me in December,2009.
I finally realized that “willpower” would not get me to where I needed
to be. I needed help. The power of my will, alone, was extremely weak.
I joined a fitness program, ran by Dustin Maher, called Fit Fun Boot
Camp AND I enlisted a friend to go with me. I initially signed up for
a trial period but enjoyed the extremely difficult workouts and
friendly atmosphere so much that I continued my membership for 6
months. THIS CHANGED MY LIFE.
In the midst of working out with Dustin, Abby, and eventually Amber, I
changed my eating habits (originally using an eating plan from
Dustin/Abby).OH MY GOSH—this was and continues to be difficult.In
December 2009, it had gotten to the point that I was eating out most
days of the week using the excuse of having a busy schedule for not
having time to cook.There was just NO excuse for all the pop I was
drinking.Well, maybe there was: my favorite, Ginger Ale, was on sale
for $1 at the grocery store! When I started boot camp in January—out
went the pop. Cold turkey.It wasn’t as bad to stop because fortunately
the pop I was addicted to had no CAFFEINE!= No withdrawal symptoms.
I also stopped eating out but here is what I replaced my eating out with:
* Lean meat—chicken, tilapia, turkey breast
* Whole grains—healthy choice whole wheat bread with no artificial
sugar, brown rice, all nat ural granola.Eventually the bread became
sprouted wheat bread and I did not have it after lunch.
* Fruit—mainly apples, oranges, bananas, and berries. Melons when
they are in season—I love cantaloupe!
* Vegetables—Collard greens, spinach, and green beans are my
favorites and the ones that I can cook—they are the simplest to steam
or sauté in a bit olive oil. I leave the starchy veggies like potatoes
and corn out.
similar to protein powder but it has no flavor and you can mix it into
pretty much anything to get an extra protein boost. I mix mine into
juice, tea, and sometimes my Amy’s Lentil soup!
* Water—no substitutes or mix-ins for me. Just drink it. Lots of it.
* Currently, I am on a Gluten/Dairy free diet. All I can say is I
feel so much “cleaner” on the inside. I rarely have gas (sorry if
that’s TMI), indigestion, etc. Try it for a few days. For me, it just
means I am not eating bread, yogurt, cheese, and milk. Things I used
to eat daily. I don’t miss them much at all.
* I DO allow myself cheat meals, snacks, etc. but don’t let these
get out of hand. Sometimes I crave Harold’s chicken. I let myself have
it. Life’s too short to be deprived.
As the pounds began to melt, I decided what I wanted to do for me
during the summer of 2010 and the future. I had gotten bogged down in
“responsibilities” that I needed to be freed from. I decided to move
back home to Chicago AND take a summer job in California. Still, two
of the best decisions I made this year.
Exercising. The best lesson I have learned is how to listen to what my
body is telling me. Yes, my body tells me when to stop. However, I
NEVER stop after the first time. EVERY time I can ALWAYS give MORE.
When I feel like I all I have is one step left, I force myself to do
two. When I feel like I will die in 30 seconds, I go 15 seconds more.
This is REALLY crucial. We are so trained, in American society, to
stop at the first sign (not even the manifestation) of pain. The pain
hasn’t even arrived and we are ready to stop. I don’t stop before the
pain, because of the pain or in the presence of the pain. Sometimes it
hurts but I keep on. This process has not killed me. In fact, as soon
as I stop, the pain subsides—like it was never there. That’s what lets
me know it’s a mind game. Pain is a master deceiver. But, I have
learned to be the ultimate master of my body.
I exercise most days of the week. Most days mean I try to exercise 5
days a week. I mix up my workout: I go to boot camp (basically circuit
training that incorporates cardio, strength, and core training); I
take Zumba classes; I run on the lake; I ride my bicycle; I run up the
stairs to my apartment (all 13 flights) multiple times. I do whatever
gets my heart in the target zone over a period of at least 45 minutes.
Most importantly, I workout like each one is a “last chance workout”
and I have FUN.
So, that’s what I do and will continue to do for the rest of my life.
My immediate goal is to lose 100lbs. With these life changes I know I
will overshoot that goal. I’m not worried. I’m excited and thrilled.