CLIENT SPOTLIGHT – Commit to be fit. Finding motivation with Amanda B

My relationship with Amanda began as a lot of my client relationships do – online.

When we met she was struggling with time, illness, kids….(3, not 1) and prioritizing life. After a false start, she came back resolute and stronger than ever. This year, at Pittsburgh VegFest we actually got to meet face to face – what a light that radiates from her. I was even able to meet her charming hubs…..after hearing “you changed my fricken life”….I was smitten.

Amanda has done SO well and is such a vibrant example of strength to her family. If you’re struggling with time, motivation and more, please read her interview for inspiration.

Amanda is a fit worker, wife, mom and most of all ~ independent woman who knows the value of self care. Rock it lady – you’re inspiring more people than you know.

Love you girl, so proud.

xx

S

Compared to 6 months ago, how does your fit life look?

It has changed dramatically-20 lbs will do that!! The motivation I have to find out what I am capable of doing. Ex- I was not able to do a push up in April and now I am doing them-a real one LOL!

 What do you think were your biggest challenges as it relates to fitness and nutrition?  

TIME! The first 30 days I was DO or DIE-my neighbors were like “where are you” Im like over pressing tofu cooking broccoli. I had to keep away from social events just to get my mind right, check in after check it -it ALL paid off!

 If you took a break from staying fit at all in your past, why do you think this occurred and what value do you put on fitness now?

After my 2nd child I dropped the weight and was “fit” working out and that was just my lifestyle-was in nursing school and life was good, then FULL TIME job really diminished that “fit” life-I worked nights and had 2 kids and NO time for me. Then the 3rd babe came along and I was like I’m gonna just do this beautiful chaotic life and roll with the punches 2 years pass and I was mentally and emotionally ready to commit to getting back into fitness.

Why did you decide to look for a coach to help you with your goals?

I went vegan about 1.5 years ago…didn’t lose weight. Vegan processed food will do that, I was working out but no CHANGES and I felt defeated I knew I needed the accountability I needed someone checking in, cheering me on but letting me know where I was fudging up the plan.

 Do you think that having a support system (online or otherwise) is integral to your ability to stay on track?

YES! People ask “ what are you doing” I got a coach-she made them plan-I followed the plan! My husband is  a smart man, he wasn’t going to say “You think you need to eat that? Or did you work out”.

What is the most surprising part of your journey so far?

What 30 days of pure commitment will do, my focus and mind set has changed completely.  I allowed myself to have free days in July for sanity and summertime. I follow the set pan the rest of the days. My performance in the gym and my endurance has improved beyond measure. I even wore shorts and went swimming this summer which has not been a thing since 2013.

 What is your biggest challenge between work/family/self care?

Time again!! Just making sure I have my meals readily available, I do a batch cook day, press my tofu, cook the veggies, I always have frozen vegan meat and veggies on stand by. 

What is the biggest positive impact on your life since you undertook a healthier nutrition / fitness outlook?  

Hearing my 10-year-old say “Mom you are so strong” The fact that they are watching, they are seeing what hard work does and that girls are strong and working out is about being healthy! This journey also opened my eyes up to the relationship I had with food-my life revolved around food or socially drinking on most occasions. My mental and health goals became inline with my social life.

How do you keep progressing and set goals for yourself?

Just remembering how I feel now compared to how I felt on April 26 2018, when this journey started. I put away my “big” clothes and don’t ever want to bring them back out!

What/who keeps you accountable?

My tribe of 5, husband- Ryan, kids- Aiden, Chloe and Jaxon!

 

What are your top 3 favourite foods to eat (good or bad) and do you have a new or interesting food item that helps you with any unhealthy cravings you may have?

Salsa/guac and chips I love crunchy salty foods!! So Ill do guac and salsa with carrots or cukes. Also, pizza, that’s my weakness in food life. To get my red sauce kick ill sauté spinach with grape tomatoes and sprinkle on nutritional yeast.

Tell us a little bit about what you see for your future goals.

I plan to just keep improving in my performance at the gym and in my overall outlook on my health. I feel great and am so proud of myself for making ME a priority. This alone has improved my relationship with my husband and children. They understand that mum just needs her hour to herself to workout and the day will carry on, it has made me a better woman, wife and mother. I have rolled around the idea of some sort of fitness competition…who knows!!

If you could give a solid piece of advice to anyone who may have been in your same position who just “doesn’t have time” to take care of themselves, what would it be?

YOU ARE WORTH IT-you get one shot here on earth, one body to do life in-WHY not feel good in that body!

 

 

Client Spotlight for Careers & Fitness – Shandi B

CLIENT SPOTLIGHT – Careers & Fitness / Family with Shandi

As a single 20 something, how did your “fitlife” look?

(Ha never single, we have been together since High school) I played soccer once a week and the odd practice). Played softball off and on but that was pretty much just drinking and hitting the odd ball! Zero gym. I was actually 12-15 pounds heavier and about 4 sizes larger than I am now.

What do you think were your biggest challenges as a married woman with no children as it relates to fitness?

I put work ahead of almost everything in my life. I never went to the gym as I was always “too busy”. I did make time for soccer at nights but that was more of a way to socialize than anything. We ate out a ton! Probably 3-4x a week. Lot’s of weekend drinking and midnight pizza!

Have you at any time put your career before your health/family and do you think that you learned anything from this if so?

See above! I feel I have learned a better balance of work and family life since having children. My kids basically take top priority…. Work isn’t everything!

When you decided to have children (all occasions) did you have fitness goals that coincided with your pregnancies?

With my first daughter I did try to make time to go to the gym and used the Elliptical machine with a goal of distance or time – whichever I hit first. I tried to eat healthy but honestly not drinking I noticed made a huge difference and I actually lost weight during the first part of my pregnancy.

My second daughter I did try to maintain fitness as I had started to get a good routine going after my first daughter was born. I managed to go to weekly bootcamps (strength training mixed w/ cardio) and used a Fitbit to try and get 12k steps a day. I gained less than 30 pounds throughout each pregnancy.

Once your kids were old enough to be in care and you could return to work, how did you manage to carve out time for yourself and your personal health goals?

This is a daily battle. I find as a mom I am constantly trying to find a balance of “me time”. We live out of town so my commute is an hour each way. I prefer to get ahead of traffic so I was driving in at 5am and would just start working. One day I decided to hit the gym instead and now it is something I crave! I love getting my workouts in and out of the way and I don’t have to make excuses as the day goes on about how I am too busy to find time. It is an hour all to myself.

What is your biggest challenge between work/family/self care?

Balance…. I need like 35hrs in day. As a mom (and I think a lot are like this) I always put my kids, house, hubby ahead of me. For example I put off going to the doctor for at least 11 months for something and as it turns out when I finally went as I couldn’t take it anymore it was quite serious… Side note – listen to your body! It doesn’t lie.

Do you feel like your work is impacted by your personal fitness routines? Ie: If you don’t workout are you as clear/focused?

I believe I am far more productive when I am achieving goals. I feel better, look better and I find I am more productive as I have my time planned out to achieve this.

If you fall off the wagon, why is it and how do you go about starting over again?

Personally daily life and health are almost always why for me. A weekend of camping will turn into poor eating and workout routine for the weekend which will then carry on for the week and it is amazing how fast I will accept this new bad routine. Usually I try not to beat myself up over a bad day or week or whatever the case. I try to get back the good habits as soon as I can. I have come to love a 70/30 lifestyle where I try to keep myself accountable and on track 70% of the time and let myself cheat or miss a day the remainder. I would like to get this closer to 80/20.

What/who keeps you accountable?

Fantastic coaches 🙂  and results. I am pretty competitive so I like to sign up for bootcamps, 30 day challenges etc where I feel I am letting myself/ coaches/ Instructors down if I am falling behind. Also I feel I need to be a role model for my kids. I wan tthem to see that I am trying to eat healthy and be active.

What are your favourite things to do that keep you fit?

Strength training. I used to do so much cardio and didn’t see much for results. I changed it up and starting utilizing more strength training and the results were amazing in comparison. I also pay a lot more attention to labels (sugar, protein, carbs).

What’s your favourite “quick” recipe for healthy eating/clean macros?

My go-to is scrambled eggs, spinach & hot sauce for breakfast. I used to eat a lot of carbs in the morning and find this keeps me fuller way longer and no crash.

Client Spotlight for IBS/Low Fodmap – Andi N

CLIENT SPOTLIGHT – LOW FODMAP – ANDI N.

 

I love this girl. She’s a mom, a wife, a teacher and a very dear LONG time friend of mine…talking over 35 years now – I blush…..thank you Andi Pandi for being a sweetheart of a client AND friend AND participating in this Q&A with how little time you have.

xx ~ S

You note your main challenge around nutrition is being LOW fodmap. How long did this take you to discover?

A long time! I have had a weird stomach for most of my adult life. I just thought that this was how my body was and it was normal. It all came to a head about 3 years ago when I had a very challenging year at work and my symptoms became worse ( I was missing work days at a time).

With SO many sensitivities under that umbrella, how did you find what foods negatively impact you personally?

When I was diagnosed with IBS (which you do by ruling everything else out), my doctor told me to research and follow a low FODMAP diet. This involves not eating anything with high FODMAP for a couple of weeks and then slowly introduce a type of high FODMAP food (Oligos, Fructose, Polyols, Lactose) back into your diet and then see how you do.

Do you notice that you make concessions with your eating habits to make meal times easier with your husband & kids?

On occasion, I will make concessions but it is when the food my husband is making is so delicious I need to try some not to make meal times easier. When I do indulge it is in small amounts so the payback won’t be so bad. Lately though I have stopped being so lazy and have started cooking more myself rather than relying on Daniel for meals (partly because me becoming Vegan is too hard for him- cry me a river)

How long have you been suffering with the symptoms of IBS etc…?

Pretty much my whole adult life.

Do you take any supplements that work for you?

Probiotics are key. I have also seen a Dr. of Chinese Traditional Medicine who whips up a mix of herbs that settle my digestion down a bit if I do overindulge.