Fitness and nutrition is a journey

20 Sep 2021

Fitness and nutrition is a journey

This is the first of 4 lessons I have learned during my 14 years of fitness. Be sure to check back for the next lesson. Preview:

  1. Fitness and nutrition is a journey
  2. A cute outfit or new shoes can go along ways
  3. I always need an event to be signed up for
  4. I always need a coach

Fourteen years ago I had a new baby, no sense of who I was, and a membership to the YMCA.

I decided after watching an episode of the Biggest Loser I was ready to lose the last 10 pounds of baby weight. I also decided that becoming a vegan was a great option for me to lose that weight.

It began with Zumba, Spin classes, 20 min abs, never the weights side of the gym, and making a friend that changed the path of my life.

I would go everyday at 10am. I would do my normal mom routine with Lincoln in the morning and then I would head out the door to spend an hour or more on myself.

Now I know today that everything that I was doing was completely wrong at the YMCA. I would spend 20 minutes on the elliptical, 20 minutes on the rower, and 20 minutes running. Then I would head to 20 minute abs. I would also go to Zumba and then cycle class and then 20 minute abs. I would definitely never walk to the side of the room that had a dumbbell, and I didn’t even understand what a barbell was. My biggest mistakes when training on my own were that I allowed myself to be intimidated by other people - that they would judge me, and not knowing what to do or what proper form was.

The friend that I met at the YMCA was my Zumba instructor. I always looked up to her - she had a ton of energy and was really nice to everyone around her. I got up the courage one day to ask her if she did personal training and she very excitedly said yes. This is where things began to change for me in the best possible way!

Now I know that what I needed was a coach to tell me what to do to check my form and make me feel confident picking up weights. But what she also did was introduce me to a little thing called CrossFit and a workout called the Filthy 50 (which I only did the dirty 30 and about died). From that moment on my life was completely changed. I started watching videos of other women doing amazing things like pull ups, wall balls, and muscle ups, and things I had never seen in my entire life! I became obsessed with the idea of doing a pull up myself!

I accidentally set the goal, and did 1 million banded pull ups, strict press and everything in between in order to get my first pull up. I’ll never forget the day! It was an extremely cold winter Florida day and in the bottom of a basement I did my very first pull up. I think my son now, who is 14, has no idea that not all moms can do pull ups or that it’s rare to see a mom be able to do 100 at a time.

That same time I decided that becoming a vegan was also how I was going to lose the last 10 pounds. I ate nothing but fruit, pasta, potatoes, and vegetables. What I got was a loss of muscle and not a defined strong body. I was also doing that completely wrong too. However I had no coach, I had no guidance and I just had Julia Michaels yelling at people to flip the tire and stop putting food in their face (I’m clearly not a fan of her). Today my fitness and nutrition continues every single day. Some days I get it right, some days I have a bowl of ice cream at the end of the day. However, every day I know that I have a healthy protein to eat, a coach to tell me what to do to watch over my form, and make sure I’m showing up every day.

Fitness and nutrition is not eight episodes of the “Biggest Loser,” and then it’s over. Fitness and nutrition are a life journey that has served me well over the last 14 years.

In health,

Ashley