How to start this . . .
Well. I think it’s fairly obvious that there has been A LOT going on in the world. Which is why I made the decision to not make this post until now. Originally, the plan was to make this post the weekend after the end of the 90 days. Again, for obvious reasons I found it best to hold off while other voices needed to be heard (and they still do! – but a quick trip to my social media pages will tell you all you need to know. I figured since I’m most active there at the moment, it’s not entirely necessary to make up an entire post here).
Anyhow. It is finally time for the reveal and final thoughts and lessons from this journey.
First, to touch base on the why I decided to do this.
I needed change. For my physical, mental, emotional, and yes even sexual wellbeing, I needed to make a lifestyle change. From the beginning I knew that this was not something that I wanted to be a “lose weight quick” scheme just for the sake of feeling good in a bikini (although that was one of the reasons behind wanting to lose weight). I knew that I wanted to make lasting changes and lifestyle choices so that not only would I actually lose weight, but so that I could move towards a healthier life overall.
It’s 100% true that this journey was inspired because of the way I looked – or rather, how I saw myself in the mirror. But that also went hand-in-hand with the aches, the bloating, breaking out, fatigue and the general knowledge that I was not being healthy and taking care of my body. Whatever I did, I knew that the end goal was to build a sustainable healthy lifestyle which would also result in a better looking and healthier me.
The beginning . . .
Started strong! One of my goals (although not a primary objective) was to blog daily about my journey . . . which obviously didn’t work out. But you know, a global pandemic happened amongst other things so that shook the world up a bit. So while I may not have blogged as often as I wanted, or was even as active on my socials as I may have wanted, I did my best to stick through and keep with my eating and workouts.
How did that work out for ya?
I knew that my biggest struggles would be controlling my cravings and keeping up the motivation to work out – especially cardio! In the beginning I did every single workout on my calendar from Blogilates, and would even follow up with a stretch from SarahBeth Yoga (both on YouTube).
However, life happened and social distancing/quarantine happened, which lead to some stress baking (and eating). It also greatly affected my mood, which then lead to a bit of a slump in working out. Oh! And around week 3 ish I twisted my ankle, which also kept me from being as physical as I’d have liked.
But – all last month (May) Cassey from Blogilates changed up her workout calendar that she creates every month into a super targeting program. Basically, each week focused on one muscle group with cardio and muscle toning/building workouts. During those weeks (especially the first week) I did cardio EVERY SINGLE DAY – and that is when I saw the fastest and biggest changes.
On Food –
Like I mentioned above, some stress baking and eating happened. But for the most part I actually managed to shrink down my stomach and figure out what “diet” worked best for me.
Basically, my daily food would consist of
- a Bang or Reign energy drink in the morning before/during my workout
- Protein shake post workout
- a light snack (granola bar, fruit, yogurt) in the late afternoon
- a decent sized dinner
- sometimes a snack or dessert
I also did my best to stay on top of my water intake – but I realized somehow wearing a face mask all day at work and being insanely busy at work makes it hard to do that.
Other than that, my biggest thing was trying to avoid eating junk food, a lot of carbs, and just eating in excess or out of boredom. (*please note that this is only what worked and works best for me – and I am by no means recommending you do the same*)
My Takeaways / Things I Learned
- it is possible to do cardio every day, if you find cardio you enjoy
- doing cardio every day GREATLY increased the changes I saw in weightloss
- allowing myself to have sweets (I made a cake for Harli’s birthday!) keeps me from going overboard
- keeping fruit in the house all the time keeps me from wanting to turn to ice cream or junky snacks (also helps to not keep junk in the house)
- cooking is way more rewarding and fun when you make a point to keep fresh produce and good spices available
- I am ok knowing that I will probably NEVER be the same size/weight I was before I gained all of this weight BUT –
- I am very excited to build MUSCLE – lowkey my goal is to be able to crush a watermelon between my legs
- After working out regularly, you DO start to get addicted to it / the endorphins produced. there were days that I would miss a workout and feel the overwhelming need to do SOMETHING
And although I didn’t shed TONS of weight, I still saw a difference in both overall body composition and posture.
So now, the thing that we’ve all been waiting for . . .
My Before/After Pictures & Measurements:
* Listed as Starting Value , Ending Value, Difference*
- Weight: 180.4 lbs > 171.6 lbs ( -8.8 lbs)
- Chest: 38″ > 37″ ( -1″)
- Right Arm: 13.5″ > 13″ ( -0.5″)
- Left Arm: 13.5” > 13″ ( -0.5″)
- Right Thigh: 26.4″ > 25.75″ ( -0.65″)
- Left Thigh: 25.8″ > 25.25″ ( -0.55″)
- Waist: 34″ > 31.75″ ( -2.25″)
- Muffin Top: 39″ > 36.5″ ( -2.5″)
- Hips: 43.4″ > 41″ ( -2.4″)
For a grand total of 8.8 pounds lost and 10.35 inches lost!!!!!
So I didn’t lost 30 pounds (which would have been 10 pounds every month). But that’s ok! Because I lost almost 10 pounds while dealing with all of the stresses of a global pandemic AND having to work in said pandemic (because Vet Med is considered essential) AND having money stress AND stress baking and eating AND with not being able to get out of the house except to work or get groceries.
I think that the mere fact that I didn’t up and quit as soon as quarantine kicked in, or the fact that I kept managing to eat relatively well, or how I pushed myself to continue working out at all during all of what’s going on speaks volumes.
And, shout out for non-scale victories – I can actually fit into my old bras again!! Bras that I had bought RIGHT BEFORE I had gained tons of weight! Bras that I haven’t been able to fit into for at least 2 years! Yes, they could fit a little better but I can comfortably fit into and actually wear them again. That’s something I was starting to feel like maybe I’d never be able to do.
So. . . the takeaway . . . Don’t give up. Even if the world seems like it’s yelling NO YOU CAN’T regarding whatever health, fitness (or whatever) goal you have, if you want it enough and you keep WORKING for it, you will get there in time. It may not be in the time that you imagined or want, but it will happen. And accepting the fact that you are a work in progress, that you are on your own journey and stop heavily comparing yourself and your journey to others is HUGE puzzle piece to do this.
I know (and knew from the start) that this wasn’t a “get fit quick” plan of any kind. But it was a huge learning process for me. If anything, I proved to myself that I do have the ability to push through and keep moving forward. That skipping one, two or even three days of working out to better take care of yourself physically, mentally or emotionally is ok and necessary. That eating a slice of cake, pizza, or having McDonald’s or drinks is NOT the end of the world and will NOT ruin your diet.
And, I think most importantly – I learned that by doing half-assed workouts or not sticking to your routine is only hurting yourself. If you want the change, you have to work for it yourself.
So with all of that being said . . . I hope that you are finding some way in this crazy, scary time that we are living in to keep pushing forward. And I look forward to seeing you next time.