My Fitness Journey (Part 3)

Anyone ever wake up on a Monday and say “just ten more minutes,” then roll over and sleep for 2 more hours? Anyone then wake up and attempt to cook breakfast only to check your eggs ten minutes later and realize your burner isn’t on?

So that’s how this Monday is going. BUT! It’s my first time in a long time where I have a good stretch of days off with (few) obligations. What better time to wrap up my first set of series posts and start on a new project? 🙂 For part one of the series click here, and for part two, click here.

Anyway, back to the original schedule.

Springfield.

Moving to Springfield was one of the easiest and hardest things I have ever done. Easy, because when Keaton said he had to move for PT school, there was no doubt in my mind that the answer was “Well, I’ll go too”. Hard, because I really, really enjoyed my life in Kansas City. I loved my CrossFit gym, I loved my friends, I had an incredible job opportunity lined up.

For reference, this was about what I looked like prior to moving (although physical changes aren’t all that matter, this move highlights how much stress can do to someone with disordered eating habits).

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I moved down to Springfield four weeks after graduation. The four weeks in between consisted of an NCLEX (nursing boards) workshop, studying more than I ever had in my life to take the NCLEX a good month earlier than recommended, move on to my mom’s couch for 2 weeks (while studying) and then move everything to Springfield. And start a new job at a new place I knew nothing about.

The first thing I did was seek out somewhere I thought I’d feel comfortable. I started at a local CrossFit gym near my house. And I hated it. My home gym was small, close-knit, and the coaches really acted like they wanted to help. My new gym was huge (they had two locations), the coaches barely watched what you did, there was never enough equipment, and people constantly shorted their sets because of time and lack of equipment. Um, no, I was not going to pay $150/month for half-assed coaching and shortened workouts due to lack of sufficient equipment.

So I quit. I tried working out at my apartment gym, but I really missed free weights. I ended up joining a $10/month gym that was open 24 hours a day with some awesome free weights and equipment. I worked out based on what I knew, but I had no drive. To top it off, I was tired from transitioning to full-time night shift, and I was sad because I missed my home and my friends. By August, my physical changes reflected my mental struggle:

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Pudgy tummy, bags under eyes.

I knew I had to change something, but I didn’t know where to start. I couldn’t afford a trainer because of wedding saving, and I was making poor food choices due to stress and overworking. I tried Krissy Mae Cagney’s Sexy Sculpt, but the workouts were taking me 90+ minutes at a time, and I felt like that was too much (I was often working 4 days a week and sleeping a ton from not adjusting well to nights). I did lose a little weight in the following months:

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But by February of 2015 I had reached an all-time high in weight and an all-time low in my fitness journey:

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Notice the really flattering elastic mark on my belly where my sweat pants were cutting in. These pictures are so, so hard to share. But, I want people to realize that everyone has bad days, months, years. Also, these are the pictures I look at on days when I am feeling lazy or unmotivated. Consistency in anything is what yields results, and this is what I can prove happens to me if I am consistently lazy, full of excuses, overworking myself, and forgetting to make time to take care of myself.

I decided to try Insanity Max 30 with my husband. It was a short and sweet program that would get me moving again, and it fit into my work schedule. While I did not fully finish the program (we lived in a second story apartment and ticked our neighbors off a couple of times 😉 ) I was reminded why investing in your health is worth it.

Nutrition-wise, I had also tried out IIFYM by self-calculating my macros based on Krissy’s flexible dieting book. I was skeptical of the concept, but I thought I’d give it a shot. I’d had success with paleo after eating low-fat for so long, so I thought changing it up might be worth it. I eventually purchased a one-time macro consultation from a coach I found online, and saw minimal progress (but I wasn’t weighing/tracking like I needed to be). But after realizing I really wanted a fitness goal post-wedding, I began researching flexible dieting competition coaches and trying to find a decently priced online option to keep me from stress eating all the way to my wedding.

Through a Facebook group, I stumbled upon my coach Lindsay, owner of All or Nothing Fitness. I had a phone consultation that lasted about 30 seconds–I think she was a little surprised how few questions I had–and jumped right in. My husband had seen my mental struggles over the last year and knew I was very sincere when I said I really needed to do something, and her rates were a bargain in exchange for mental sanity. I sent my first set of progress pictures on May 7, 2015:

By my wedding, I hadn’t lost tons of weight. But for the first time in a stressful string of months, I hadn’t gained a ton either. I made it through my bachelorette party, shower, and honeymoon and still weighed less than I had in May. I was probably 75% compliant with the program Lindsay had sent (sorry, coach), and I still saw results. I realized I needed to buckle down and really work, but that this new way of thinking and eating and living was truly my ticket to a new and more balanced life in terms of health and nutrition.

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Our rehearsal dinner- I remember looking at these pictures and being SO happy–I wore a skin tight dress and didn’t hate any pictures that came out of the night!

 

One more post, then this series will be all wrapped up here.

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