A year ago today, I made the hardest decision of my life… to get off my butt and make a change. I set out to lose 80lbs by my 35th birthday (10/27 if you’re marking your calendars). I started working out and a week later changed my diet fully (even gave up cheese for 6 weeks!).
My only real goal at that point was a revenge body. My trainer asked me at our initial meeting, “revenge on who?” and I just said “everyone”. What I didn’t realize is that it really was on the old me. The girl who made excuses and allowed everything else to be a priority aside from herself. That has all changed now!
As I’ve said, I’ve never been a runner or cyclist (or as I’ve realized now-a “real” swimmer). I was working to get in shape and lose the extra weight I’d been carrying around my whole life. I had been really enjoying the weight training and even the menu planning, but couldn’t make myself do the cardio. I had no problem (most mornings) waking up to meet my trainer and get my butt kicked, in fact I loved it. But largely, it was the other days I found my motivation lacking. Having always heard from my many friends who have always done triathlons and some not so gentle nudging from my friends who belong to Empire, I decided it would be the perfect complement to my fitness regime- and boy was I right! I have been absolutely loving the routine, comradery (in case you’re not sick of hearing me talk about that yet!) and the work outs! I started my training with Empire in early July and feel like a different person in the last two months.
The training has given my workouts purpose. The goal was no longer to get just to in shape but to finish this pretty cool thing. I have still been working out with my trainer twice a week and continuing to do the total body conditioning in addition to the Empire workouts, but with this new goal in mind, everything seems a bit clearer. The weight is coming off, the meal prep is easier to do, because I am striving towards something and I’m not doing it alone. Having the goal of the race has been more helpful than I imagined. It pushes me to reach a goal and by a certain date. There’s a sense of accountability now that I didn’t have before. If I slipped and missed the gym or didn’t eat well that day, it wasn’t the end of the world, it was just me I was letting down, which now I know is the most important person to not let down! With the Tri, I have more people supporting me and cheering me on and an actual thing to finish! I may not have a real time in mind, but after this week’s LBI Tri I will. Even if I really still just want to finish, preferably not last!
While doing a sprint triathlon was on my bucket list, I don’t know that it was something I ever really imagined I’d check off. Now less than a month away from MightyMan Montauk, I can’t wait and am already considering an Olympic distance one (we’ll see how 10/2 goes first!). And I’ve even signed up for a mini sprint this weekend as a practice workout. The LBI Tri was the race I wanted to check off my list and now it’s my practice! This Sunday, I’ll be testing my skills with a 400m swim, 10 mile bike and 3 mile run. I would never have even seized the opportunity to sign up for this if it hadn’t been for my Empire friend Julie who pushed me to do it with her. I’m so thankful to have a buddy to complete this with but even more so to get to do the race in my hometown.
In the last year, I have lost 70lbs, gone from size 16 to a 6 and have muscle definition I didn’t know I could even have! I even wore a bikini on the beach for the first time ever! I can run three miles, without stopping, and in 28 minutes, swim 400m in 11 minutes (in a pool, but still!), dead lift 225lbs and so much more! People always ask, do I feel better and I almost laugh, because I know they mean physically and want me to say yes. But the truth is, physically, I don’t feel much different. It’s not like I couldn’t breathe or anything before. I do feel like I can DO more now. I never really let the weight hold me back from anything, I will say it is all A LOT easier now! The best part is how I feel MENTALLY, that’s where the biggest change is. After being out of the workout routine, even though I had more fun than I even expected on vacation, I see the difference! And I am fighting my way back. I didn’t realize how much I needed the structure (and endorphins) for my sanity. I have already worked out three days in a row and feel like the new me again! I’m really starting to see the Tri addiction thing now!
I’m not one for public showings but this felt worth sharing. The picture to the left is a year ago, the middle picture is at the end of May before my training with Empire began and I kicked my overall fitness routine into high gear and the picture on the right is now! It’s been a year of hard work and lots of changes but I feel great and am so incredibly proud of myself. The year has flown by (as they tend to do) and being in the position I’m in now vs where I was last year makes each missed happy hour, each uneaten bite of cake worth it!