Never Give Up

* The title of this post was taken from the Sia song of the same name*

Several years ago, I met Amy through our mutual friend, Crissy. Little did we know then, that she would end up switching where she worked and find herself at a hair salon right next to my studio.

While there was a little bit of conversation about her beginning training here, Amy got married and started a family with her husband. In the meantime, some of her colleagues started training here.

In the spring of this year, Amy reached out to get the ball rolling on her journey. She just recently hit a milestone of 30lbs down and, by her admission, the lightest she has been since high school (over twenty years ago.)

I wanted you to hear about her experiences straight from her mouth, so today’s article is more of an interview so you can see what it’s been like for her.

JASON: We have known each other for several years and have even worked right next to one another for several years as well. What made you decide it was time to finally get started?

AMY: I believe the bottom line of why I started working out was I needed something for myself. I wanted to feel better about myself all around. I wanted to be the girl who decided to go for it so I did. I had always been an athlete and always loved being active. I got married and had 3 babies in 4 years. I had just lost myself physically and most of all mentally.

After my last and final baby, it took me about 4 months to get my shit together and pull the trigger. I had goals which scared me a lot but I was also super excited to try and reach them! Having you next door just made the deal sweeter for me. A couple of girls from the salon were working with you, loved you and had nothing but positive things to say about you. Knowing you from back in the day helped as well. I am so thankful our paths crossed again. I had no idea how instrumental you were going to be for me on the journey.

JASON: So, you lost 30lbs in about 6 months. How did you do it?

AMY: I lost 30lbs by having 1.) Courage to take the step, to make the move. 2.) Determination to feel better, look better, and move better. 3.) Discipline. I told you all the time if I was at a gym I would not be here. I had to use MY time wisely because MY time was very limited. I had to move and eat like a normal human.

JASON: It wasn’t an easy process initially for you and I remember you having a lot of doubt of being able to do this. What changed?

AMY: I absolutely had doubt about losing weight… Come on, don’t we all? I had tried before and it is really scary to make that commitment. For some reason I think my mindset changed when I started to feel stronger physically. It triggered something mentally for me. I started to think, “I could do this!” It became exciting for me, it became kind of like a game and I was just going to win, period. It also helps if you have a good trainer and positive people around you…just had to get that in there!!

JASON: Not only do you have a part-time job but you’re the mother to three children under the age of 4. How did you deal with the time constraints to reach your goals despite so much on your plate?

AMY: This is a hard one for me to answer. I dealt with the time constraints really by not wasting my time. Not making excuses that I had no time. I really just said “Amy, get over yourself”. I think it goes back to being determined, and focused. I had to let go of some things at home whether it be enjoying my TV show with food in my lap, or knowing my husband had it covered.

JASON: For you personally, what was the most difficult part of losing weight? Conversely, what did you find to be the easiest?

AMY: Let me say that for some reason this all feels like an out-of-body experience. I still can’t believe I lost 30lbs. I wonder if other people feel the same way? That being said there was and is absolutely nothing easy about me losing this weight. One of the hardest things that sticks out the most at this time was my family….in particular, my kids. When we first met to talk about my goals you asked me how many times my hand went to my mouth a day with food.

In my mind I thought “Shit…probably about 20 times. My kids eat all of the time and so did I. That was the first thing I had to change. I had to be utterly aware not to put their food in my mouth. It had become such a habit that was very difficult to break. Another thing that pops into my head that scares me and is going to be difficult is keeping the weight off. I think people might forget about that part. That might be by far the most exhausting part to think about so far.
If I am being honest with you right now I don’t think I can tell you anything that was easy about losing this weight. Reaching this goal was a hard mountain to climb one that I will always be climbing

JASON: Many people start to listen to their bodies and make adjustments along the way to either diet or exercise. What changes did you make on your own that helped along the way?

AMY: ARE YOU KIDDING ME? I had to change everything about my life. The only thing my body told me is that it was hungry and I was going to be sore no matter how many squats I did! (HA!) I had to change how much I ate, what I ate, how often I ate and had to figure out how to move more then I already thought I did.

When I first came to you I said I feel like I should be so much skinnier then I am, all I do is chase after kids. You told me my body was used to that so I had to change that as well. It took me a couple of months to find my rhythm and not feel like I was totally going to die because I was choosing not to have those beers and some wings drenched in BBQ sauce and deciding to get on the treadmill instead of taking a nap with my kiddos. I understand now why when I read about other peoples success stories they always said stick with it. With this kind of emotional rollercoaster you have to stick with it.
My body now does tell me I am hungry in a good way. The foods I choose to eat I actually have grown to like and don’t crave the deep fried foods as much anymore. Please don’t get me wrong people… that beer and those BBQ wings still call my name and are a nice treat from time to time.

JASON: What is the best advice you can give to someone struggling to lose weight right now?

AMY: This is a hard one too because everybody is so different. I think I would tell someone not to put so much pressure on themselves . The struggle is so real, to find that inner strength. I know it sounds cheesy, but really, I didn’t wake up one day 30lbs lighter although that would be pretty awesome. Take it slow. It really is just one meal at a time. I would tell them that they are beautiful the way they are. Now you are just deciding to be healthier, fitter, faster and stronger. REMEMBER THAT.

And this, ladies and gentlemen, is a leaner, stronger, healthier, happier Amy (who still has some more goals to hit.)