You never expect to receive a weight-loss wake up call while walking around the “Happiest place on Earth,” yet there I was, a 240-pound woman in the last year of her twenties, trying to ignore the pain in my feet as I struggled to walk around Disneyland just a few hours after entering. Fast forward to the end of day two of my trip and I was in tears as I limped down the very long hallway to my hotel room. It was at this low point that I realized that my feet were straining to support my weight and I knew it was time to make a drastic change.
If I couldn’t enjoy one of the things I loved to do most because of my weight, then I decided I needed to work to become a better version of myself. In addition, my family has a history of weight-related issues, so I owed it to my future self to act now. After losing 45 pounds by consistently working out, improving my diet, and changing my lifestyle, here are a few things that helped me get started, a few lessons I’ve learned along the way, and my hopes for the future.
1. ASK YOURSELF: “WHAT WOULD MY BEST SELF DO?”
Think about who you want to become. Now pretend you actually are that person today. What would your ideal self do on an average day? One of the things that I think makes my story unique is that along with losing weight to improve my self-esteem and self-image, I have this adventurous side that wanted to take on new physical activities that could’ve been difficult as a larger person. Often, I would envision myself climbing rock walls or competing in obstacle course races.
While I was trying to figure out where to start, my coworker talked me into going to a 30-minute workout class at an amazing gym called NXPT. Not being too sure what I signed myself up for, I feared that I was too out of shape to handle the class. But then I thought, “The person who you are trying to become wouldn’t be afraid of new challenges.” So I laced up a brand new pair of workout shoes and stepped boldly into my first half-hour boot camp. Try doing the same. Whenever you’re unsure of yourself, just ask yourself the question: “What would my best self do?” Then do it!
2. FIND YOUR #FITFAM
One of the problems that I had early in my weight-loss journey was thinking that I was the only one who cared about improving myself. I was very quickly proven wrong and learned that people are more than willing to help you if you’re actively trying to help yourself. The family and friends you have around you, the trainers who kick your butt in class, the coworkers you carpool with to the gym, even members of online forums, all want to see you be successful in your pursuit of better health. Lean on these people for their support and provide the same to them.
Be willing to learn new things. Fitness and food strategies evolve over time and I realized that some of my preconceived notions of dieting and exercise could’ve been detrimental to my progress. Read health blogs, and especially read the comments for criticisms. Learning from other FitFam members from outside of your circle can help open your eyes to new ideas. Ask questions and be receptive to advice. Once you’re apart of the #FitFam, you become a member of a very supportive fitness community that strives to inspire one another.
3. STAY ON TRACK
In the beginning, I was super motivated to become this new version of myself. I went to the gym every other day during the workweek, ran on Sundays, unfollowed all the foodie Facebook pages that I considered not part of this new lifestyle and surrounded myself with health-related content. I was all in. But sometimes motivation only takes you so far. Staying motivated can be difficult, even for elite athletes. The real key to staying on track is simply making working out a habit and being consistent. I decided that my gym workout days are Monday, Wednesday, Friday, and then an outdoor run with my husband on Sunday. If something happens to come up on those days, which will happen at some point, I make it a priority to get that time in.
Everyone has excuses for not working out. If I gave into mine, I wouldn’t have had the continuing success that I’m seeing today. If you want some extra incentive, there are some techniques to hold yourself accountable, such as taking photos of yourself each week to see your progress, keeping a food journal, or trying Road Runner Sports’ awesome new mPort system! If you’re not familiar with mPort, it’s a body scanning pod available at Road Runner Sports’ San Diego and Costa Mesa. It’s so much better than your typical scale. It provides you with a 3D avatar of your body, along with height/weight readings and body measurements. You can track your progress with the mPort app and set reminders for new scans. I currently have my reminder set to every four weeks and have seen noticeable progress with each scan.
4. SHARE YOUR SUCCESS: YOUR STORY CAN INSPIRE OTHERS
There is no greater payoff to all your hard work than the first time someone notices your progress and says “you look amazing!” It never gets old. Reaching your goals means that congratulations are in order, and I’m encouraging you to share your triumphs however you feel comfortable. While the fanfare is motivating, sharing your success can have another effect on those who are thinking about starting their journey. Your story has the ability to inspire others and help them take the next step in overcoming their obstacles to better health.
There was a sad time in my life when I literally felt like a lazy, worthless nobody. I know these are pretty harsh words to think about yourself, but it was my truth. I wasn’t happy with myself, but I was so inspired by a fellow fit co-worker, who happens to post about her awesome workouts every chance she gets, that I followed her to her workout class one day, and that is how my story began: totally inspired. She showed me the way. Now it’s my turn. If my story inspires one person to make a positive change in their overall health, that means the world to me. If there’s one phrase that I feel tops “you look amazing!” it is the words “you inspire me.”
Guys, getting fit and healthy can be tough physically and mentally, but in my experience, the results are worth it in so many ways. I went from someone who ate for pleasure and hated sweating to a full-blown clean-eating gym rat. My overall weight loss goal is to lose a hundred pounds total, and according to my last mPort scan, I’m almost at my halfway point. I’m currently training for my first obstacle course race in January of 2018 with the amazing trainers at NXPT Fitness. I’m a regular at their X30 class, so you can find me there most days. Everyone has the potential to improve their health in different ways. Like my favorite quote from Nelson Mandela says, “it only seems impossible until it is done.” Find your path, stay focused, and help others along the way.
You are an inspiration waiting to happen.
Author bio: When Veronica is not curating thousands of product images for RoadRunnerSports.com, she is either working out at NXPT Fitness, or going on adventures with her awesome husband in and around San Diego. She’s on the pathway to better health and fitness and her goals include losing a hundred freaking pounds (what?!) and competing in obstacle course racing. Check out Road Runner Sports’ new mPort system now available at our San Diego and Costa Mesa locations!7463