It has been a long time and as to be expected, so much has happened! About 2 weeks ago I found out I suffered a stress reaction in my femur neck, the medial part of the femur that attaches to your hip. The doctor stated it was most likely due to something I may have done differently in my workout. To make a long story short, I recall doing sprints on an incline back in March and think this may be the culprit. I am not to have any weight on this part of my body, so I will be in crutches until end of June. I am already feeling a bit lopsided! In another 3 weeks, I will go for another MRI and hopefully it will show no signs of swelling whatsoever. The danger is that it could have become a stress fracture and I somehow caught it on -time. Lesson learned: Listen to your body. I was having a sharp pain radiate from half way up my thigh to my hip area once I started to run, so I stopped running and did everything but that. I should not have waited this long to have a visit to the doctor, but at least I stopped what was causing me to have pain (running!) until May. The pain started at the end of March- yes, lots of time went by. I was thinking it was a muscle injury and surely, was surprised when I found out it was the actual bone. Again, counting my blessings and thankfully no fracture. Now it’s just a matter of time. Regardless, I have been doing my personal training and all of my clients have been incredibly supportive offering to help gather their equipment and burn those extra calories while I hold onto their program and make them break a sweat! I am very thankful for their support, kindness and patience with me during this difficult and stressful time. It makes me happier each time I am with each and every one of them! Now, I am just hoping for a quick recovery and some relief for the 4th of July!
Regardless, I have some new music, recipes and exercise tips for your hot, sizzlin' summer! Enjoy!
Via Spotify! If you have Spotify, you can find my playlists under Michelle Guerrero! It’s free! Here is the one I created today (listed in alphabetical order)!
Armin Van Buuren – Beautiful Life
Armin Van Buuren – Waiting For The Night
Armin Van Buuren – Alone
Armin Van Buuren – This Is What It Feels Like
Calvin Harris – I Need Your Love
Capital Cities – Safe and Sound
Daft Punk – Get Lucky - Radio Edit
Flo Rida – Sweet Spot - feat. Jennifer Lopez
Groove Theory – Tell Me
Guinevere – Fly Away - Radio Edit
Icona Pop – I Love It - feat. Charli XCX [Cobra Starship Remix Radio Edit]
Janet Jackson – All Nite (Don't Stop)
Jason Derulo – The Other Side
Jennifer Lopez – Dance Again
Jennifer Lopez – Live It Up
Jennifer Lopez – On The Floor
Jennifer Lopez – I'm Into You
LMFAO – La La La
Macklemore & Ryan Lewis – Can't Hold Us - feat. Ray Dalton
Mariah Carey – #Beautiful
Maroon 5 – Love Somebody
Martin Solveig – The Night Out - Madeon Remix
Morgan Page (feat. Tegan and Sara) – Body Work
Nelly – Hey Porsche
Olly Murs – Dear Darlin'
Phillip Phillips – Gone, Gone, Gone
Rihanna – Diamonds - Remix
Rihanna – We Found Love
Rudimental – Feel The Love - feat. John Newman
Rudimental – Not Giving In - feat. John Newman & Alex Clare
Sevyn Streeter – I Like It
T-Pain vs. Chuckie – It's Not You (It's Me)
Twenty One Pilots – Holding On To You
• 2/3 cup old-fashioned rolled oats
• 1 cup milk of your choice (I use Almond Breeze Brand Unsweetened Vanilla & Chocolate Almond Milk)
• 2 tbsp. Cinnamon
• a dash of freshly squeezed lime or lemon juice (½ tsp.)
• 2 tbsp. Chia seeds (optional)
• 1/4 cup currants
FYI- I make 5 of the servings above so it lasts a few days.
1. Fold all ingredients together in a bowl, place in the fridge overnight. In the morning, let it stand for 10 minutes and then you can add fresh fruit (sliced bananas or strawberries) or just eat as is. I always fill up my mason jar with it and take it to work!
Work your Glutes!
The gluteal muscles are a group of four muscles. Three of these muscles make up the buttocks: the gluteus maximus muscle, gluteus medius muscle and gluteus minimus muscle. This group of muscles helps you to stand, sit, run, and move in all planes of motion. The gluteal muscles help to stabilize the hips when standing, walking or running. When your have weak gluteal muscles, it can often lead to lower back pain and postural issues. Do not be afraid of squats and lunges. Done in proper form (always knees behind the toes and back in neutral position or flat), these exercises will only help to strengthen your buttocks thus, become stronger when standing, walking, etc. So, get moving and get ready to look amazing when you hit the beach this summer or in your skinny jeans year-round! If I can do single leg squats (on crutches), then you really have no excuse.
Here's one of my favorite Equinox videos that will have your glutes on fire!
Have an amazing summer!
It’s been awhile and I am happy to say HAPPY NEW YEAR! Today on this historical day, I wanted to take a moment to reflect on all the good that we have by living this great country! Oh the blessings: liberty of democracy, the ability to pursue our dreams…a country where we can choose our own president. That’s the true definition of freedom!
My job as a personal trainer allows me to help those around me reach their fitness goals and this trickles into both their professional and personal life, which is probably the most rewarding of all! Each time I train someone, I know they are happier on the inside, thus making them simply shine on the outside. So try to start the year by lending a helping hand to those around you, consciously knowing that you are impacting their life, no matter how big or how little you may think it seems, the simple act of listening and paying attention is going a longer way that you might imagine. Just a warm smile or, my personal favorite, treat someone who’s in line for coffee a drink as a surprise are great ways to say, “I care”. Always remain humble and grateful, for each and every moment is truly a gift.
I will have more to come, but wanted to take today to say THANK YOU to you for reading my blog!
Wishing you a healthy and prosperous new year!
Finally, I get a moment to sit and write! Wow Fall has arrived. New shows (Grey’s Anatomy, Revenge anyone?), new plans and the holidays are now floating right around the corner. This is the time of year when the air feels crisp in the mornings, such a welcoming feeling from the hot, muggy summer days, when you can open the windows and feel the air brush gently against your face bringing that delightful coolness and cozy feeling into your home. Now add a sip of dark hot coffee (or hot chocolate) to that scenery and oh my, you’ve been struck by Cupids’ Fall arrow! So, I am now in love with Fall. I’ve been struck and for me, it’s a time to embrace change both on a personal and professional level. As the orange colored leaves give way to this beautiful season, I will take in everything that has happened this year and learn how to apply it to my life going forward. It is the time of the year when I will be doing some personal introspection and revel in the cool, enchanting beauty of Fall.
These past few months for me have been all about learning, learning, and more learning! I have taken the time to learn TRX, working at Equinox, about my new clients (their goals/frustrations) and taken the time to learn about my own goals (both personal and professional). I realize that life is a journey and one should never really stop learning. Learning is a gift and is truly the greatest gift you can give to yourself. My dad always said (regarding travel), “You can’t learn it in a book, you have to just do it and experience it, live it”. It’s so true.
So this Fall I am rejoicing in my newfound learning experiences. Taking some pieces from my good and not so great experiences and extracting the very best from each one of them to make me a better person. I heard this thing on the radio today, that you should have compassion with yourself and thought it was an interesting point. We are human after all. So there is not need to beat ourselves up for a task we didn’t get to, or for not making the best judgment while at dinner in terms of a healthy meal or not getting to the gym those 6 days a week. It is ok to stop and acknowledge those were mistakes and that it’s ok to make them. You are only human and will make many mistakes in your lifetime. The key is to have compassion with oneself. Tomorrow is a new day to start over. I feel that the more compassion we have towards ourselves, the better souls we are for those around us such as family, spouses and friends. I will dedicate this season to just that- some introspection and reflection in hopes this will make me a better trainer, sister, daughter and friend.
I’ve been extremely busy with my new job as a trainer for Equinox. I am incredibly grateful for the opportunity to work with some of the most amazing trainers I have ever met. I have learned that I can push myself beyond fear and being scared, I have learned that if I truly have confidence, I can conquer anything. When I started at Equinox, I thought, wow, how do I fit in here? It was incredibly intimidating and meeting the new trainers and working at such a reputable fitness club is truly a dream come true, but also the most terrifying situation for me. But every morning, I just think, “Michelle, you are a personal trainer and you were hired for a reason, so just be yourself, be confident and just do it.” This is my mantra in the parking garage each time- just before entering the club. So far, it has worked. Confidence is key. I will soon be starting classes at Equinox that last one month. Throughout mid-October and November, there will be 2 exams. I am incredibly nervous, but I know that when you truly have a passion for something, you give it 110% and that will never fail you. So, school begins for me this Fall and I am ready to take on the challenge! What have you learned about yourself thus far this season?
My clients teach me so much everyday. They also help me see and understand why I became a personal trainer in the first place. Each time I meet with them I am reminded of why I love to do what I do. I often get emails and texts saying “Thank you!”, “Burned 450 calories at gym!”, “Ran 5 miles!” and my favorite thus far, “I feel lost in the gym without you.” This was a text from my amazing former client (now great friend) Gopi, whom I adore. She went away to grad school and well, grad school is already tough and to top it off, she is away from home and at a new gym. I love it each time a client tells me how I am affecting their life in a positive way. It is the reason I became a trainer, so it reinforces the fact that I am on the right path. I feel I am making a positive difference in their lives and that alone means the world to me. I am grateful and thankful for the opportunity to help others and truly feel it is my true calling. Have you ever thought about who inspires you to be the best you can be each and every day, kids, parents, a close friend?
I found her blog one day and I have listened to her podcasts on my iPhone and downloaded her apps (below). She's great and an amazing motivator!
Randomizer: It basically spins a wheel like a slot machine and selects three different exercises for you to perform. There are great videos that go along with it for proper form.
Ab Randomizer: Same idea as Randomizer, but for abdominals. Both are fantastic if you are bored with your workouts and need new ones.
Anthony Bourdain: No Reservations. Need I say more?
A great place for kid recipes and so healthy! Love it! Found this site on Twitter!
Finally ordered the book! I haven’t made any of the food items yet, but am excited to try all the recipes. I just love the uber healthy ingredients and beautiful photos in this book! I will say, today I made the Spiced Lentil Soup with Coconut Milk from the website (link below). It smells amazing & I can’t wait to try it!
Pam, my amazing client, purchases items at the farmer’s market on weekends and brings us in-season fruits and veggies. Since I meet with her Sundays, it’s great to leave our sessions with my little bag from the market. It’s been great and we have been able to try new things each time! Like beet greens (the leafy greens at the ends of the beets, yes, those.), which happen to be so delicious and sweet, I used to throw mine away until now. Also kale from a farmer’s market- no comparison; it simply bursts with sweetness that is truthfully, addicting. Yes, addicting. Trying different veggies and fruits from a Farmer’s Market is a great way to incorporate new items into your kitchen and your belly!
I am not a shopping gal, per say. I rather be doing something active for sure, but am a girl at heart. I just love cotton and when I find a store that has great material, I tend to stick to that store and just buy all my stuff right there (hassle free). So, Madewell is my favorite store for t –shirts and sweaters (had to post outfit below because I just love it too!). Their cotton is amazing! My old shirts have become my new pajama t’s, that’s how cozy and good they feel.
Nike Pro Essentials Capri Tights
I absolutely love these. They are not expensive ($40), dry-fit, feel fantastic with no tightness at waist (blessing) and let you move freely while doing any training program. I use them for running or on my strength training days.
So I will be writing more soon, but now it’s time to think of what it is about Fall that you most love. Enjoy your pumpkin spiced lattes and/or hot chocolates, think about all your good and bad experiences (we can all extract some goodness from each one), have a little compassion for yourself when you don’t do everything you set out to do. Enjoy each day learning from your every actions. Oh, and stay healthy, of course!
BODY, MIND & SOUL (Physical, Mental and Emotional) make sure you are taking care of all of these on a daily basis.
The month of June was crazy and July is blistering hot and may I say, just as crazy! I have been busy and having lost of fun (it is summertime after all!), albeit recovering from yet another back injury, but feeling much better today. I truly do hope this blog finds you well and enjoying your summer thus far. I separated this blog in the following parts: Body, Mind and Soul. Read on and you will see why.
I have been busy taking some classes in NYC, which have completely re-energized me. First, let me tell you about a site called GoRecess.com. If you workout when you travel (say yes, please), then it’s a great way to change up your routine making different muscles work and become newly challenged and a great way to try out something new! It sure beats the hotel gym. At GoRecess.com, you can click and select any type of workout you wish to do such as bootcamp, yoga, spin, and add the dates you will be in town. It finds your options and you can purchase the session right there. Travel, show up to class and there you have it! Two classes I recently took are Barry’s Bootcamp in NYC and the 30/30 class (a mix of TRX, indoor cycling and bootcamp) at Pedal NYC. I also visited UPLIFT Studio and if you are ever in town on Wednesdays, they have wine after some of their classes. The studio is super cute and they are really nice! Now that’s an incentive right there.
I am excited to be heading back to NYC this August to become a TRX trainer, which will be great to be able to use with my clients. I am very excited and will be telling you about this once I head back.
MIND & SOUL
Happy Birthday Selvina!
Who is she you ask? Well, I am very proud and grateful to be able to say that both Jason and I recently decided to sponsor a child through Compassion.com. She is from Kenya her birthday is July 21, when she will turn 6 years -old. Sponsoring Selvina was actually a great recommendation from a wonderful client/friend (we do learn lots from our clients as well you know!). In Selvina’s biography, it states her favorite thing is to jump rope and although she is only 5 years -old, she wants to become a doctor. Might be too soon to tell, but I am looking forward to seeing her become whomever she wants to be and one day visit Kenya and finally meet our little one. As long as she is healthy, honest, kind and lives with integrity, that is all that matters (oh and that she continues to jump rope, of course).
I recently discovered that Deepak Chopra has a You Tube channel. I subscribed to his new series 30 Days of Intent, which takes ordinary people and fits spirituality into their busy lives. I don’t think the actual series has begun, but check out the preview below. I think you will like it. I think it is very important to find that spiritual balance in your life in whatever form fits you best. I think many of us have a hard time dealing with crazy schedules and we are always rushing here and there so, we fail to make this aspect of our lives a priority. Some tips are to SLOW DOWN (and I do admit, this is truly the hardest thing for me), take some deep, slow breaths throughout the day, and breathe from deep within your belly (diaphragmatic breathing) to get the most oxygen into your body and mind and help you de-stress and relax.
The Chopra Well
30 Days of Intent
This is by far, one my favorite websites. It has beautiful pictures of places and quotes that are inspiring and quite honestly just makes one feel happy. If you are having a bad day and need a pick me up, this will surely do the trick. While you have the site up, there is a great playlist that you can scroll through or leave on while you work, browse the web or cook (as I often do)!
I sure hope you breathe deep and your toes make it to touch upon some smooth sand and beautiful saltwater this summer!
Michelle Guerrero, ACE-CPT
I just wanted to keep you posted on today's activity. I feel like I am nearing the end of this ordeal and am thankful to be able to say that in good spirits. I hope to resume my regular routine this coming Tuesday. Yoga (Vinyasa style) has been helping me greatly. I am crossing my fingers that it all goes well in the coming days. I can't tell you or explain in words how much I miss my active life and my clients.
Today's visit to the neurologist (who was amazing) stated that the episode that I had was likely a convulsion vs. a seizure. He did a few reflex and walking tests as well as checked my vision with a bright light in the dark. Thankfully, all looks good. I have to have the EEG test tomorrow. Since the test is in 2 parts. The first part is the one where I can't sleep for more than 4 hours (there are other rules and details, but haven't exactly gone through them yet). Pulling an all-nighter? Call me. The second part is an when I go home with the same electrodes attached to my head and monitor my brain waves for a period of 24 hours. For the first part, I haven't read all the details yet, but keep hearing the girl at the desk say, "...no caffeine...make sure you sleep for no more than 4 hours...". That appointment is tomorrow afternoon, so you can see this should make for one very interesting evening for sure. Luckily, we did find reassuring the fact that the doctor thinks I am going to be ok based on all other records, but with these last few tests, want to make certain there is nothing overlooked. The last test is an MRI of my brain and then I can hopefully move on and continue to do what I love each day (Bootcamp, training - here I come).
I placed some additional information below in case your are interested.
So I will be diving into my Hunger Games tonight (and any ideas you think of to keep awake, please send my way!). I love that my beautiful neighbor who just had a baby said to give her a buzz at 3 am because she's up for about 1 hour with baby Weston (Thanks Daphne.). I haven't pulled an all-nighter in many many years. Oh, I do have plenty of shows on TIVO (yes!).
Funny note, as Jason and I were talking this afternoon, we realized today is our 8th year anniversary (overlooked with the madness we've been going through). I have to say, that Jason always was and has been amazing these past days. I am thankful each and everyday for having him in my life. I feel like I am literally, living with an angel. My kind and beautiful mom has also been there through it all with me and luckily is able to spend much time helping me and keeping me company.
Oh, this is an new book, I would like to read. It's written by Doctor Sanjay Gupta (love). I saw this on GMA this week. Very interesting.
Please make sure you stay active, positive and take time to slow down and breathe.
Hugs and thank you for reading (I am sure there are more exciting things you could be doing:)!
It’s been a really long time and I hope your year is off to a great start! I hope you have some new fitness goals in mind and are getting ready for the Spring. It's truly great to be able to wear flip flops once again and to walk and run outside!
Well, as for me, all was going well until I injured my back. I can't pinpoint what caused injury to this day, it just felt painful to bend or more my torso. Today it will be eleven days since I went to the ER last Monday with my wonderful and amazing fiancé, Jason, for my back pain. As I was being discharged from hospital, the craziest thing happened- I had a seizure. Mind you, there is no history of seizures in my family. They mentioned Vasovagal Syncope (a type of fainting that can involve a seizure), but nothing definite to this day. I do not recall anything other than waking up on the floor and feeling like I was drenched in sweat and my tongue hurt, which led me to believe I had somehow bit it. They quickly readmitted me immediately and ran a million tests even one I had never heard of- a lactic acid test. We were in the ER from 11:30am -7:00pm. I left with a 600mg prescription for Motrin and Valium for the night. The doctor was unsure why the seizure happened yet when another doctor (next day) did an x-ray, I was told I have arthritis and a bone spur in my lower back. I was told to do absolutely no physical activity. I can’t even drive until cleared by the neurologist. Tomorrow is my appointment with him and I can only hope it goes well. I am going to have an EEG done and personally, hope to be cleared and back at the gym this weekend. I miss my clients dearly and so miss teaching Bootcamp on Tuesdays.
These past few days have been full of thoughts of life and what if’s. I thought, what would I do if I could no longer be a trainer (have always been good about having a plan b) and came up with some good ideas, but mostly all involve food- ha! Oh, the irony. Maybe open up my own coffee shop with healthy snacks, a juice bar with veggie drinks and exotic fruits, travel and bring back ideas from other places, volunteer helping kids in different parts of the world get basic needs such as water, education and food. Be a writer (once told I would be great if I pursued this in college by a professor). My best friends and family were calling me and for the first time I felt like I came so close to death (No exaggeration. It was crazy in that ER) that I actually thought, “…at least I had Nutella and chocolate last night…”. Clearly not priorities at all when life and death are involved, but I was obviously out of it. Quite shallow actually, but in all honesty, I thought what if? Is this life telling me to slow down?
So my message for this blog is WHAT IF. Think of the what if’s in your life (I am sure you can come up with a few in both happy and scary situations), have a plan b and don’t’ wait until tomorrow to do what you love. Also, don’t sweat the small stuff. It sounds overly cliché, but it’s so true. Life is so short. Make sure you both laugh & love as if it were your last day.
Now, my favorite poem from one of my favorite books, Where the Sidewalk Ends by Shel Silverstein (hmmm… it has always been my favorite…now it’s starting to make sense! Ha!)
“I cannot go to school today,”
Said little Peggy Ann McKay.
I have the measles and the mumps,
A gash, a rash and purple bumps.
My mouth is wet, my throat is dry,
I’m going blind in my right eye.
My tonsils are as big as rocks,
I’ve counted sixteen chicken pox.
And there’s one more—that’s seventeen,
And don’t you think my face looks green?
My leg is cut, my eyes are blue—
It might be instamatic flue.
I cough and sneeze and gasp and choke,
I’m sure that my left leg is broken—
My hips hurt when I move my chin,
My belly button’s caving in,
My back is wrenched, my ankle’s sprained,
My ‘pendix pains each time it rains.
My nose is cold, my toes are numb,
I have a silver in my thumb.
My neck is stiff, my voice is weak,
I hardly whisper when I speak.
My tongue is filling up my mouth,
I think my hair is falling out.
My elbow’s bent, my spine ain’t straight,
My temperature is one-o-eight.
My brain is shrunk, I cannot hear,
There is a hole inside my ear.
I have a hangnail, and my hart is—what?
What’s that? What’s that you say?
You say today is… Saturday?
G’bye, I’m going out to play!”
My New Favorites
This year, two of my best friends and I are going to San Juan, Puerto Rico. Why Puerto Rico? None of us have ever been here and it’s affordable. This is how we came up with our destination. Try something new!
Found out about Lost Girls while searching travel sites.
Décor (Jason and my sisters’ dear friends that inspire me)
FB Jason P Graves
JP’s Antiques & Collectibles (I am a bit biased- it’s my fiancé, Jason’s site. Can’t help but to love it.)
FB Sarah Sherman Samuel
FB Kiersten Stevens (my amazing wedding planner)
My Blender (cute idea!)
My New Roots
Society Fair (If you are in Alexandria, VA/ Old Town neighborhood, you must stop here.)
FB Society Fair
VA Fit (my lovely fitness manager and friend)
Muddy Buddy (Hope to be able to do this for the first time in April. Thanks Rina!)
Bob Harper Yoga for the Warrior DVD (my first workout after eleven days of no cardio. love.)
Madewell (love their plane tees!)
Victoria’s Secret Campus Crop (sweats)
Lululemon (stating the obvious, I know…)
Read & Watch
Reading the books & can’t wait for movie!
The Ellen Degeneres Show
Sophia Grace & Rosie
Pinterest (a total addiction!)
Coldplay (We got tickets for July concert!) Loving the entire album Mylo Xyloto and all others (lets be honest).
Emelie Sande (a beautiful Scottish singer with an amazing rendition of Coldplay’s Every Teardrop is a Waterfall).
Take care of YOU & don’t ever take your health for granted:)
It's December- can you believe it! It sure has been awhile and I hope all of you are doing great! I wanted to share a few of my favorite things this year:
Spotify.com A great place to find music and create your workout playlists
MyFitnessPal.com Great tool for staying on top of your caloric intake & believe it or not, USER-Friendly!
GOOP iPhone APP (but love the newsletter via email too) http://goop.com/newsletter/157/en
Tracy Anderson (celebrity trainer) Playlists http://tracyandersonmethod.com/tracy/playlist/
HEAVY (a very moving show on the struggles of weight loss)
Starving Secrets (a show about the struggles of eating disorders)
Bake or Break http://www.bakeorbreak.com/
Favorite Drink of the year: NEGRONI
Favorite ALL TIME wedding video (from one of my sister's best friends)
PINTEREST (a great place to gather images from sites that inspire you)
Visiting the UK with my now Fiance, Jason (Scotland and London were amazing!)
Spending time with my gorgeous sister having some Fluffed Marshmallow Vodka on the Rocks in our pj's at home:)
Fluffed Marshmallow Vodka
Still reading (know for not finishing a book quickly!)
Now it's time to think about your favorite things!
Hope you all are having an amazing holiday season!
Below is the story of my client, Hanna (A.K.A. Rockstar), and her weight loss journey (I am proud of you girl!).
Weight Lost: 12 lbs
Path: How did you get to a weight that was undesirable for you?
I have always been active since young, and my muscular frame has made me bigger than my friends. I started to become overweight in middle school. I have a medical condition, in which during the early stages of diagnosis caused me to gain a lot of weight. I’ve always had a slow metabolism; so working off the weight has been hard. In addition to the medical condition, my mom and I were busy all the time, we would pick up a meal from a fast food restaurant once and a while. We didn’t have chips and candy in our house, but once I had my first tastes from friends, I was hooked. My sweet tooth betrayed me and I craved sweets. I am an emotional eater as well. For any occasion, whether it’s happy, sad or angry, food would be a comfort. For years I have struggled to lose the weight.
Breaking Point: At what point, did you finally decide it was time to make a change?
I’ve always wanted to lose the weight. More recently, once actually finding myself, I knew this wasn’t the body I’m meant to have. I wanted to find clothes and be healthy. I wanted to match my workout habits with the outside appearance- a fit, muscular, girl who is in shape. No more did I want to look like the elephant in the picture against my friends. I’m tired of trying to lose weight, getting to a certain point then gaining back what I had lost. However, realistically I know what size I want to be. I’ll never be a size two, but I’ll be a happy, healthy size with muscles to prove it.
Change: What changes did you start to make?
I started to read, learn and realize that working out is only one part of it. I had to eat right too. I started eating more fruits and veggies. Writing down what I eat each day is helpful too. Then you can visually see and have tangible evidence of what exactly you are eating, no matter how bad it is. Currently I have been incorporating more vegetarian and gluten-free meals in my life. Half of my family is vegetarian and my mom is allergic to gluten. Sweets are still a struggle for me. I try and limit my sweets to three days a week or just on the weekend. However, I can’t deprive myself, so I need something like pineapple and a little chocolate sauce at night, or just a small glass of chocolate milk. Weighing myself weekly helps to keep me in check.
How did you benefit by having a personal trainer in your life?
This is my first experience with a personal trainer. I have never had someone teach me new exercises to keep my muscles guessing. Michelle is a huge support system for me, and knowing I have a session with her, keeps me accountable to go to the gym. Weight loss is a personal, intimate goal. My trainer is sensitive to my needs, yet isn’t afraid to push me past what I thought I could do. There are some exercises I never thought I could do, and weights I never thought I could lift. She is encouraging and without her motivation I couldn’t make this change happen. I am happier, healthier and truly look forward to each workout.
Success: When did you notice the first changes in weight and how did you feel?
My mom actually noticed changes before me. I feel better now, and can do more at the gym. My clothes felt a little bigger and looser after the first few weeks. I have been working with my personal trainer, Michelle, for about three months and have lost 12 lbs.
What tips that helped you in your weight loss journey would you like to let others know?
The biggest tip is to surround yourself with people who support you. People who will help accommodate meals so that you aren’t tempted. People who tell you to go to the gym and just start with 20 minutes even when you are too tired to move or get out of bed. It is about eating and exercise. If you only do half, you will only get half the results. Also, just because I have weight loss, doesn’t mean everyday isn’t still a struggle. I lose weight because I put in the work- the healthy way. However, every time I have a meal, or want food it remains a constant, conscientious choice I have to make.
I feel my best inside and out, when I get a good workout (cheesy I know, but I like feeling the sweat to know I’ve put in the work).
I'm dreaming of a day when I’m not self -conscious of my body, but self- confident of it.
When I wake up, I try and see the newness of the day, despite whatever happened the day before.
When I workout on my own, I never go without my iPod. My music helps drive me. Second, would be my heart monitor. I like seeing the actual number of calories I’ve burned.
When I workout I listen to anything that will get me pumped. I need music that is upbeat, sometimes having a good base line, in order for my body to feel and get in sync when working out. For me, most of my music that does this for me is Christian music. It is both upbeat and uplifting.
When I relax I listen to my favorite used to be Enya, yet now I have a playlist specifically labeled “Peace”.
The one thing I absolutely love to do read. It is both relaxing and gives mean escape from the world for an hour.
One thing I have never done that I would like to do is white water kayak. Weight loss wise- to trade and share clothes with my friends. I’ve envied how my friends could trade and share clothes with each other.
One thing I learned about myself once I started my weight loss journey I can do more than I think. Most of the time I would get frustrated or be comfortable in being my size (because I don’t know how to feel good in anything different). I started to give myself more credit, without increasing my standards. I don’t want to have over expectations of myself in case one day I don’t meet them, but know what I can do, how I can push myself.
My sweet tooth craving is everything! This is my personal battle. One of my favorites is just baked cookies and ice cream. I am such a warm food person.
Thank you Gopi for trusting me and trusting YOU.
Below is the first Success Story that I will be featuring this Fall in my blog. These will be mini Q & A’s that my clients have been kind enough to share with you. They will be posted through December to encourage you to take a step towards improving your health. My client featured below actually began her weight loss journey right at end of October, it gave her the basis to keep her away from sweets during the tempting holiday season, and she claims it was a great time to start because she “...would have done more damage otherwise”. I encourage you to read these stories and find the courage within yourself to make the changes you need to live a healthier life!
Name: My Client (Female)
Age: About 50 years old
Current Weight/Age: 110lbs/ About 50 yrs. old
How did you get to a weight that was undesirable for you?
I always struggled with my weight, even as a teenager. Frequently when under stressful circumstances, I would lose control and gain weight. It would usually happen quickly. There were also time periods when I would get back under control and weigh less, but they wouldn't last.
At what point, did you finally decide it was time to make a change? The event for me was having my doctor put me on cholesterol medicine while still in my forties. I needed to see if there was something I could do by changing my habits that would improve the numbers without medicine. I still went on the medicine, but I decided I would also see what I could do with diet and exercise.
What changes did you start to make: daily, monthly, etc.?
I spoke to a nutritionist about a diet to lower my cholesterol. My goal was to control cholesterol although I knew I would also be losing weight. The nutritionist came up with a diet having the proper number of servings and types of food for a person of my age and size. I went cold turkey onto that diet. I gave up certain foods and beverages, and gave up others temporarily. The nutritionist and I would discuss modifications or additions when I came up with things that were making the diet difficult for me.
When did you notice the first changes in weight and how did you feel?
The diet I was on was intended to show results very early to avoid frustration on my part. At first, some of the weight came off quickly. Then of course, things slowed down.
How many pounds did you lose and in what time span?
I only planned on losing about fifteen pounds, but I lost over forty total in about 8 months. I have gained a few back from my low point as I have leveled off to a maintenance diet.
What tips that helped you in your weight loss journey do you think would help others?
The clean break in eating habits worked for me. I now eat and enjoy foods that I never would have enjoyed before. So at first things were much more difficult because of the need to adjust foods and portions. As you find out what you like to eat that is also good for you, things become easier. It isn't a diet anymore, it is just how you eat. This is much better than any way I had previously lost weight, when I thought of the changes in eating habits as temporary for the diet.
How did you benefit from a personal trainer in your life?
While I lost the weight through dieting and did improve my cholesterol numbers, it didn't take care of everything. The nutritionist encouraged me to exercise, but I just couldn't get myself on a regular schedule. I knew the exercise would be helpful for weight loss, but I didn't really understand how important it was to protect my back (and the rest of me) while I aged. That is where the personal trainer came into the picture. The regular exercise is difficult. I hate it, but having Michelle, my trainer, push me through it makes it bearable and I know how important it is to good health. As with the dietary changes, the aerobic exercise and core strengthening needs to be a lifelong endeavor.
I asked my client to fill in the blanks (It can’t all be serious right!). What would you say?
I feel my best inside and out, when I eat the right foods.
When I workout I listen to anything with a strong beat!
When I relax I listen to classical music.
The one thing I absolutely love to do is take a nap!
My sweet tooth craving is chocolate cake!
Thanks to my amazing client for sharing and good luck in reaching your fitness goals!