Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Another goal, Another journey...

I was singing my lil heart out as I drove down the 405 this past Sunday morning. The road was wide open, my favorite worship song blasting through my speakers and I headed to my first fitness photo shoot since the birth of my second son…

Rewind to July 2014 when I made the commitment to myself to be photo shoot ready by the time I turned 33. My 2nd child had just turned 4 months old, I was still breastfeeding and I was staring at my body daily wondering when I would look and feel “normal” again. I started slow, committing to 3 days a week of some kind of exercise. I didn’t even worry about my eating at that time because I felt like I needed to take it one step at a time. Little by little my body started to change.

In August 2014, I decided that I needed to add a new layer to the goal. I committed to doing some kind of exercise 5 days a week and allowing myself 2-3 treat meals a week. I was beginning to transition out of breastfeeding and had a little bit more flexibility in my schedule. My husband supported me by making sure he was available to watch our boys so that I could get to the gym. I remembered how my fitness journey looked and felt like with my first baby. I was stressed, I put a ton a pressure on myself and I over worked myself. I decided that this time, I would reach my goals without stressing myself out. My schedule was doable, with room for error and correction. Each time I looked at myself from here on out, I decided to smile…not because I LOVED what I saw, but because I knew that every day was a step in the right direction. With the increased commitment, my body changed a little more.

September 2014 brought another level of commitment. I got organized, continued with my 5 workouts per week but focused on consistent weight training. I did cardio when I could, but didn’t stress out if I didn’t get it perfect. I was able to consistently get at least 2 cardio workouts in per week. I cut out the extra sugar (I was putting about a ¼ teaspoon in my coffee or adding a shot of vanilla syrup if I bought a latte) and cut my treat meals down to one a week. A normal eating day looked like this--- breakfast: slice of wheat toast with ¼ avocado and 4 scrambled egg whites with Tapatio, snack: 3 boiled egg whites and 1 apple, lunch: 4 oz chicken with 4 oz yams and 1 cup kale, snack: 3 oz chicken, 1 cup carrots, 2 Tbsp hummus, snack: protein shake with water, dinner: 4 oz fish or chicken, 2 cups lettuce, chopped bell pepper, onion, cabbage, 2 Tbsp raisins, homemade dressing. If I was really hungry after dinner, I would have greek yogurt and berries or an apple and 1 Tbsp peanut butter. Every so often, I would have an extra treat meal, especially if I was craving something specific. I kept my focus on doing each day well, but once again didn’t stress myself. I lost 6 pounds that month.

I continued the same eating and exercise routine during the month of October. The biggest change during October was the addition of the “4 am workout.” In the previous months, I was doing my workouts late at night, after my boys were in bed and during the late morning on the weekends. This month, I decided to start getting up at 4am and going straight to the gym so I could get my workouts done and get them out of the way. I found that this time was wonderful for me! I felt like it was MY time…the gym was empty, I had more energy and killed every workout. By the end of October, I lost an additional 4 pounds.

At the beginning of November, I booked my photo shoot. I work very well with concrete goals and the shoot was a way to reward myself for consistency. After my first pregnancy, I set a goal to compete in a bodybuilding show 6 month after my son’s birth. Although I’m glad I set and achieved that goal, getting “show ready” was something that I didn’t want to rush this time. The goal of a photo shoot gave me something to work for without the pressure of getting super small. I continued with my same eating and exercise routine (I use variety in the exercises I do, just stick with the same day by day split). Part of my goal was to be able to feel confident and look my best at the photo shoot while not over dieting. I kept my treat meal every week, only did not have any desserts. By photo shoot day, I lost an additional 5 pounds.

Back to the open road and my favorite worship song blasting through my speakers…I exited Roscoe on the 405. A few turns later, I was parked in front of the studio. The feeling that I had on the inside was magnified by the camera and joy filled each shot. I reached a goal. But, that goal doesn’t signify the end of a journey, it marks the beginning of a new adventure. I smile when I think about the future, when I think about the next challenge. My 33rd birthday is in 1 week. I love myself, I’m choosing to focus on what I CAN do instead of anything else and I am proud of my progress. I feel like I’m at my best, not because I look perfect but because I’m taking care of this amazing body God gave me. To all the moms out there…YOU CAN get your body back. YOU CAN find the time. YOU ARE WORTH the effort. Hopefully my journey encourages you to stay consistent and keep smiling.

Until next time,

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