Hi everyone! If you have followed my team's Skinny Fat Fitness page or blog then you are probably familiar with who I am- but if not, let me tell you a little about myself and my journey to fitness so far.
I am a 26 year old Neonatal Intensive Care Nurse and co-owner of the motivational and growing company Skinny Fat Fitness (http://www.skinnyfatfitness.com/). I began my career as an active duty Navy Nurse Corps Officer and continue to provide care as a NICU RN to military families at the Naval Medical Center San Diego. My next endeavor will be starting a doctorate program in the fall and getting my pediatric AND family nurse practitioner license!
Christianity comes number one in my life. Now with that said, I dont judge others for thier beliefs by any means, but do understand that it is important to me and a contributing factor to how I carry myself as a fitness role model and the cause of some conviction that I feel associated with it. However, I LOVE fitness!!! I love that the Lord gave me this heart that is full of big dreams and ambitions and wishes to change the world through health and fitness. I love that he built me just as I am- petite! I never had a muscle in my life but he also built me with something that not all people have or use: will-power, and because of that, my body has become a platform of transformation. From Skinny Fat to Skinny FIT!
I have always been active. I LOVE everything outdoors- from hiking, to rock climbing, to snowboarding. I love getting caught up in adventures!! I played soccer and cheered while growing up, and as a naval officer I was required to PT (physically train) in order to pass my physical readiness test. I basically did the bare minimum to get by. I owned every issue of Oxygen Magazine, FitnessRX, and Muscle&Fitness Hers and adored every womans' physique but I lacked the motivation and dedication to change myself. The very first blog I every wrote was a list of excuses why I was "skinny fat" and I'd like to share them with you so you can see where it all started:
Why I have skinny fat a.k.a. "List of Excuses" (written January 6, 2011)
- CARBS! I could eat bread & pasta at every meal. In fact, I have for the last few years of my life. My diet lacks balanced portions as well as the lean proteins that I need to obtain the results I am hoping to achieve. With that being said, I have also never tried to change my diet nor taken the time to research nutrition. I get cravings, I eat what I want, I feel bad about it immediately after but tell myself I will run/workout tomorrow and everything will be ok. NOT OK!
- MY JOB/HECTIC SCHEDULE. I am a full time neonatal intensive care nurse who works three-five 12 hr shifts a week. During a 12 hr shift, I have a 30minute lunch break which hardly leaves time to eat one healthy meal, let alone use the bathroom. On a typical work day I wake up at 5:30am, leave for work by 6:00am and am home no earlier than 7:30pm. Where does that leave time to eat breakfast, work out, cook dinner, take care of my dog, and spend quality time with my boyfriend and friends?
- COMPLACENCY. I can eat what I want and it would not be evident by looking on a scale. Eating yummy carbs makes me happy (at that moment in time). My boyfriend still loves my body and my girlfriends think I am crazy when I make a negative comment about it. I work out minimally which saves plenty of time for other tasks I need to do and maintains my current physique. I have gotten comfortable with living below my own fitness standard. Why? Because my life is so much easier that way :)
- LACK OF CONSISTENT MOTIVATION. Sure, every time I peel through the pages of the latest Oxygen magazine, I am overcome with aspirations and desires to morph into Jamie Eason. Pshhh... until I close the cover, feel sorry for myself, and head to Panera for a broccoli & cheese breadbowl to cheer myself up. What I need is a catalyst, something to set a fire under my booty! A goal or reason to push myself daily. I haven't fully committed to a goal as of now. Short term- I suppose what gets me through day to day is wanting to look amazing for my boyfriend. I want to "wow" him with my body and I will continue to work hard to get that response. Long term- ideally, I would like to compete in the 2011 Fitness America Southern California Bikini competition. Right now this seems very far fetched, but I am hoping over the next few months this will seem like a much more attainable ambition.
- LACK OF ACCOUNTABILITY. Who cares if I work out or eat right? Is it effecting anyone besides myself? If I skip a day in the gym or sneak a cupcake during lunch, will anyone know? When I was an active duty Navy nurse, I had to weigh in every 6 months as well as pass a Physical Readiness Test (PRT) to prove that I was "fit for duty". If I didn't meet the Navy’s standards, there were consequences. I used to hate having someone breath down my neck and force me to work out, but now as a civilian, I would pay to have that type of liability. I mean, LITERALLY, I am debating hiring a personal trainer to push me and make sure I meet the goals I have set for myself. Another way I try to stay accountable is to make workout/run plans with girlfriends of mine. Having a workout buddy has really been monumental in motivating myself to make a change. Also, one of the objectives of starting this blog is to have something to hold me accountable to my fitness goals. If I state on here that I am going to log my daily nutrition and workout, it is going to look pretty suspicious if I have not posted anything for days J
- STARBUCKS. Ok, this is probably not the cause of my skinny fat, but my absence of self control and my unfaltering ability to crack under the pressure of that glowing green Starbucks sign is probably related to my overindulgence in other food and beverages. It probably does not help that I ordered a venti white mocha every day. Goshhhhh, I want one so bad right now, but I am not giving in. Today is day 4 of me going without this delicious satisfaction in a disposable cup containing 10% postconsumer recycled content. (P.S. I am going to allow myself two a week starting out but if I consume less than that I get a gold star)
Each of the items listed above are part of a daily struggle for me and thousands of women to meet health and wellbeing goals. Day by day,I hope to research how other people have overcome these fitness obstacles and integrate their methods in to my training. I hope you'll check back in and see what I find :)
Lets go over these excuses and see how I have progressed over the year (written 2/12/12)
Conquering my "List of Excuses"
- CARBS! Guess what I found out over the last year?? There are actually HEALTHY carbs that are just as satisfying and filling as the old bread and sugar filled junk that I was eating. I enjoy my oats, sweet potatoes, brown rice, ezekial bread and wraps, quinoa, and fruit like no other. My diet has changed completely in a year thanks to Tosca Reno's Eat Clean Diet. This is my "diet bible"... I still tear through "Eat Clean Diet- Just the rules" daily to make sure I am on track. Here is an excerpt from Tosca Reno's Just The Rules to explain exactly what clean eating is and why it is important: "Contrary to common "diet" pactices, including starving yourself and omitting entire food groups, Eating Clean allows you to eat more and weigh less by making informed food choices. An Eat-Clean Diet follower knows to eat five or six small meals a day by choosing from a cornucopia of lean proteins and complex carbs, and by avoiding starchy, sugary, empty-calorie, industrialized and high-fat foods. Eating several small meals of lean protein and complex carbs daily will fire up your metabolism, making you a highly functioning, fat-burning machine. Your entire body will thank you and you'll be amazed at how good you look and feel."
Tosca Reno is AMAZING and knows what she is talking about. I mean take a look at her before and after picture!This "lifestyle change" (I refuse to call it diet) has helped me look and feel better than I ever have in my life. The recipes are phenominal and there are so many different options! Eating Clean and getting the proper amount of protein and supplements in my body has been body-altering in a very healthy way.
- MY JOB/HECTIC SCHEDULE. This has been the hardest part of the entire thing: BALANCE! But let me tell you, if you want something bad enough you will go after it no matter what! When I decided to compete in Fitness America Southern California, I MADE time to workout, grocery shop, and eat clean. Being my first competition, I did not balance social life, Christianity, and a relationship that well. There were plenty of stressful times that I wanted to quit because I just wanted to lay on the couch with my boyfriend, or go out for dinner and drinks with the girls, but it being my first show and feeling self-doubt, I just pushed myself and made time to get my training done. A lot of sacrifices were made that I am not proud of looking back, but I am proud of my accomplishments. What that being said, I am learning to balance it all. I still work 12 hour shifts but I head straight to the gym after work. I am taking advantage of my off days to take care of errands and spend social time with my friends and boyfriend. I am learning that it is OK to go out to dinner and have a glass of wine with my girlfriends every now and then. Being able to have a fit lifestyle and also relax and have fun has been amazing!!! I don't have to sacrifice church, date nights, and girls nights out to have an amazing physqiue.... but I also know in the back of my mind I can not sacrifice my hard work and dedication. BALANCE!
- COMPLACENCY. I can just knock this off the list because now that I know what my body is capable of, there is no such thing as compacency. There is always something, whether physical, emotional, or spiritual that I can do to better myself and I will never forget that.
- LACK OF CONSISTENT MOTIVATION. I would say my I can knock this off as well. My motivation level is about a 10/10!!!! I have so many positive role models in my life, so much faith in my team's small business, and such a burning desire to earn my WBFF pro card, get sponsored, and published in a magazine, that there is never a second I don't feel enthusiastic or motivated about this journey. Here was my old short term goal I listed "I suppose what gets me through day to day is wanting to look amazing for my boyfriend. I want to "wow" him with my body and I will continue to work hard to get that response." Yep, I definitely get that response daily! Although, he is also weary about other people having the same responses. This is common in relationships in the fitness industry. It something we have to talk over and I have to pray over daily to make sure we are at a happy compromise of me following my dreams and not losing him. He has been my rock and such an awesome inspiration for me. He keeps me grounded and he keeps me in check and he believes in me- his love is my strength. My old long term goal stated "ideally, I would like to compete in the 2011 Fitness America Southern California Bikini competition. Right now this seems very far fetched, but I am hoping over the next few months this will seem like a much more attainable ambition." I am so proud to announce that not only did I enter that competition, I took first place in my class and won OVERALL!!!!!
- LACK OF ACCOUNTABILITY. Thanks to Skinny Fat Fitness and our amazing followers, I strive to keep my body fit and healthy year round so that I can be an example for these amazing men and women on their own fitness journeys. I DID end up hiring a trainer. I learned a lot about lifting weights but it was an overall horrible experience, this trainer was such a negative influence on my life that it made fitness less fun and way less reasonable (and much more expensive). You can read my yelp article for the full story on this because I am keeping this blog POSITIVE :) Just do a lot of research and pick a trainer that is going to holistically train and prepare you to the best of your abilities. Luckily, Cathy Savage Fitness and WBFF Pro Jen Jewell came to my rescue. I get my personalized training exclusively from Jen Jewell (she also offers a discount for Skinny Fat Fitness followers), and I get lots of training, diet tips, motivation, and SISTERHOOD from Cathy Savage Fitness. Cathy Savage, Jen Jewell, Tina & Anji (from SFF) are the most positive, friendly, and knowledgeable personalities in the fitness industry. They make this fun!!! They make this POSSIBLE! That help me believe in myself! I also had the honor of being selected as an ISS Research & OhYeah! Ambassador to represent Southern California. Their products are amazing and the integrity of the company is top knotch. To know I need to be HEALTHY AND FIT with an attainable appearance year round really helps hold me accountable. Being an OhYeah! girl has also offered me so many opportunities such as being the OhYeah! Girl at the LA Fit Expo and being selected to work as an OhYeah! Girl at the Arnold Expo. I cant wait to meet the other ambassadors who I have looked up to all this time!
STARBUCKS. Quit! Ok, I may grab an expresso every now and then but it is usually rare! I now prefer just a cup of regular Keurig coffee cups and I use OhYeah! Vanilla RTD as my only creamer! Its AMAZING- you have to try this! I will be doing an entire blog on my favorite OhYeah! products and some background on the company so stay tuned.
EARN my WBFF Pro Card
EARN a sponsorship
WORK HARD, DO PHOTOSHOOTS to be published in a magazine
BALANCE my relationship with Christ, my boyfriend, friends, & family, full time nursing, a doctorate program, and overall making myself the most healthy and well-rounded woman I can be. When I have daughters, I want to make them PROUD! :)
(ok, ok, pretty much every fitness enthusiasts goal list... but its honest)
I hope you will follow my progress along the way. This blog will talk about balancing life and a career in the fitness industry... which isnt as easy as it sounds. Its a blog of my personal experiences. Please also continue to follow our progress on http://www.skinnyfatfitness.com/