I currently have three notebooks that have all of my most precious current life experiences: one I use for logging my boot camp workouts, the second is a food journal, and the third is just a general life highs and lows log. I don’t know why I decided to break it up that way, but up to this point it’s working fairly well! I was writing my morning work out in this morning and realized that I’m coming up on 30 days completed of Boot Camp. I feel like I’ve been doing these workout for eternity and it’s only been 30 days! The really cool part? I’ve definitely seen my body transform. The last time I got on the fancy scale at Lifetime Fitness I was down 3% body fat and about 2-3 pounds. I took my measurements a while ago maybe back in November when I initially joined the gym, and I’m going to take them again tonight to see if there’s been any changes there. I do know that my bra size came down a few inches!! I’m in a good ol 36 now versus the 40in I measured myself a few months ago.
With that information, I’d just like to clarify the primary purpose of this blog. I’m Cierra. I have had (I’m sure) a similar experience as most people with my journey to better health. I’ve survived doctor generated health concerns from about the age of 10- and had my first success with dropping some weight through maturity and Weight Watchers during high school- losing about 30-40 lbs. Throughout college I yoyo’d my way through a gain of those 30-40 pounds back and have used a variety of resources that bring me to my current status. While in Graduate School at Michigan State University (Go Green!) I feel in love with a Boot Camp approach to fitness. I love the challenge and quiet competition and yet support from fellow boot campers. I liked the idea of doing workouts I never saw myself doing- particularly considering I wasn’t ever truly recognized for my athletic accolades–I cheered and played soccer- but mostly to maintain my social life 🙂 After finishing grad school, I moved to Nashville, TN- pushed through my first full-time job as a 22-year-old and balanced some resurfacing self-esteem and body image challenges. I joined a Cross Fit gym, after a dear friend shared her success with their workouts and found that I too was a “G” when it came to power lifts (can I get an AMEN for power cleans and back squats!) I loved the workouts- but knew that with a goal of leaning out, I had to find a balance with cardio and what I was using to fuel my body. I shifted into training with one of my awesome friends on the Vanderbilt football coaching staff, and quickly learned that I was fully capable of achieving this dream. Not a dream to be skinny, or thin, or size 0 (or 2 for that matter, hm!) but a dream of being physically and emotionally sound. Physically and emotional hydrated, nutritious, fit, and sound. I realized that dream is apart of my life journey and jumped on board with everything I had. I left Nashville at 175 pounds.
The fuel piece has always been my greatest challenge. Which brings me to present day- my life, now back in Columbus, OH ( I am a proud undergraduate alum here at the greatest university ever- THE Ohio State University, I’m not biased I swear.) I joined a small gym here in German Village and loved the family feel and approach to my fitness goals, but was struggling to find a financial balance (HELLO expenses that come with up-rooting your life and moving…a LOT). So I walked away from the gym training environment and attempted to work at my goals on my own. Lesson Learned? Anything worth having doesn’t come easy and anything you truly want often comes with a certain level of investment. In this case, I realized that the investment was mental, physical, and financial. I dropped the luxury life of granite counter tops, and tubs so big you can swim in them– I moved to an affordable apartment complex and re-prioritized what it was I was truly after- my health….my hydrated, nutritious, fit, and emotionally sound health.
There’s a plethora of other details I could include in all of this ( i.e. the countless meal plans I’ve tried, the money I’ve spent on info-mercials promising me that this is really it this time!, the countless protein powders and new carbs I tried (quinoa anyone?), trainers, gyms. etc.) All of those details, while exacerbating and slightly exhausting, are a part of my journey. They’re all a part of what’s allowed me to be where I am right in this moment. The meal plans exposed me to new foods, and the gyms exposed me to training and trainer styles that I respond to. The info-mercials gave me a starting point for addressing my health goals, and the protein powders helped me discover that they don’t all taste like chalk.
My journey has landed me here. On 4/28- about the 30th day of Boot Camp- ready to attempt a new fueling factor. My trainer introduced our group to the Carb Backloading approach to nutrition in terms of goals of reducing body fat percentage and gaining strength- both of which are my goals! I’m currently coming to the end of the current 90 Day Challenge at Lifetime and yet it’s really just the beginning of my personal transformation challenge. I can’t focus on the number on the scale- focusing on that number has led to binge eating, binge workouts, binge buying of “health” equipment and resources. I think I’m on to something and I’d like to share it as I experience it through this blog.
I want to feel amazing. I want to feel strong. I want to feel fit. I want to feel well-nourished. I want to feel emotionally stable. I want to feel like I have made a commitment to myself. I don’t need a specific weight on a scale to help me feel those things.
Today I start the Carb Backloading approach. I’m sharing it here because there’s been quite a bit of feedback from males who’ve taken this approach but not too much on females and what their experiences have been (successes or failed attempts) the goal is to give it a real shot for the next 7 days…. and for this blog to be the outlet of my experience.