Hi! Happy New Year to you! I have missed blogging over the past month plus...and I feel horrible for being away that long! Between moving and being sick for the better part of December, I took an unwanted break. But I am back and ready to get on a regular posting schedule again!
Since we're here on the second day of the new year, I'm sure many of you have listed out your resolutions for the year...and many probably include upping your fitness game, losing weight, toning and tightening, getting healthy, eating better, or all of the above.
I'm with you. My mantra for the new year: NEW YEAR, NEW ASS.
I'm really going to dive in here and share a little back story on my fitness journey thus far, my tips for TIGHTENING up, and how I'm going to do it again.
I have been blogging for 10 years now - yes, 10 freaking years! It all started on a different platform and many of those posts are long gone, but about 8 years ago I shared my fitness journey and how I lost nearly 50 pounds. I have been very apprehensive about sharing more on this topic because it puts me in a vulnerable spot, but I hope it can help at least one person out there.
The back story: Growing up, I was never overweight. In high school, I competed on a swim team and I was pretty damn fit. My weight didn't fluctuate much at all as a child through my teen years. I was always a healthy weight. Then, in my early 20's, anxiety seemingly randomly rolled in like a tornado. More on that some other time. My solution at the time: taking an SSRI to treat general anxiety. It worked, however, I gained 40-ish pounds within 6 months. My diet hadn't changed (it wasn't great then), my exercise hadn't changed, and after relentless research and blood work, I figured out that the culprit was the medication. So I said, "bye, bitch!!"
That is when my fitness journey started. I began weight lifting, I started researching nutrition, read a million books, and when Instagram launched, I followed just about every fitness blogger. I was so inspired and motivated. It took me about a year to lose nearly 50 pounds (A lot of the weight just fell off due to my previous hormonal imbalance normalizing). I was in the best shape of my life, and I felt AMAZING because I was treating my body right.
Fast forward to the beginning of 2016...the anxiety was back again like a stage 5 clinger. I had sworn I would never take the SSRI medication I had taken years prior again, and was prescribed a different SSRI. What happened? I gained 30 pounds in 10 months. This time around, I was already living a very healthy lifestyle and I had no doubt that it was the medication.
I said goodbye to SSRI's forever last year. NEVER AGAIN. This time around, it has been harder to get rid of the residual weight. I have lost a significant amount of weight, however, I am on a mission to say buh-bye to the rest this year.
(Note: I am not a doctor or registered dietician. I am not here to provide advice on whether or not you should be taking any sort of medication or not. I am simply sharing my personal experience.)
Now for the fun part. Let's talk about HOW TO DO IT.
THE HARDEST PART OF ANY CHANGE OR RESOLUTION IS STARTING. SO JUST FUCKING START.
It really is that simple. Go out and start taking action.
It's all about mindset. Call me crazy, but it is. The biggest difference between the first time I achieved what I wanted and now is all mindset. You are quite literally a manifestation of your own thoughts. Negative, Debbie downer? That is what you throw back and become. I'm telling you this from experience. Start thinking positively and you will see a huge shift.
Be vocal about your SPECIFIC VISION. Determine what your vision is and then voice it, whether it's out loud to yourself, to a friend or family member, or the internet! ;) The more specific, the better. For example, instead of saying "I want to be fit in 2018", determine the how, what, and why. For example, "I want to have a 6 pack by living a healthier lifestyle to prove to myself that I can look and feel my best."
Write down action items that aligns with your vision. My favorite way to do this in regards to tightening up is to make a list of everything that I need to do to meet my goal/vision, and then I calendar it out. If you're new to fitness, don't go all in at once. Start with just walking on the treadmill a few times a week and work up from there to avoid burnout and disappointment.
Think like you are already where you want to be. For example, if you want to have a 6 pack, what would you be doing if you were already there? This step seems to simple, but it makes such a huge difference.
FITNESS & DIET GOALS
Use My Fitness Pal. This app is amazing for holding yourself accountable, understanding what you're eating and how much. If you're looking for HUGE results, this will make a HUGE difference. I recommend buying the paid version as it is easier to track macros this way.
Add more fiber to your diet. This is one goal I have just started paying attention to, and it makes a HUGE DIFFERENCE. Fiber keeps you full longer without added calories. Sign me up!
Drink more water. ...Says everyone. I drink a lot of water, but I'm adding more in to my morning routine with a zing of lemon to kickstart my metabolism. After this, I go straight for coffee or espresso, which is also great for your metabolism.
Mix up different workouts. Changing things up confuses your body, which is a GOOD thing when it comes to weight loss and/or toning up. Have fun trying out different workouts and different classes. My favorite classes are Bodypump, yoga, pilates, and spin.
How are you going to kick this year's ass? Please add your list in the comments!