My weight and physique started to balloon up at age 15. I remember my brother and I planned on making a trip to Israel and Egypt for my 16th birthday, coming up that July. In April I told him it was time to make a change… I had reached 200 lbs.
For 3 months we counted our macros: carbs, fat and protein. Daily weight training and cardio. I was down to 140lbs for our trip, but couldn’t keep to that lifestyle. I started college, dating, and completely lost all knowledge I had gained… and of course, all the pounds that I’d lost. I would gain a few here and there, lose them again through an exercise class at school, but I could never really grasp what the problem was.
I was back up to 200lbs when I met Justin, my future husband. I knew he loved me as I was, but I always felt bad about how I looked. We had a beautiful baby girl who came out through through an emergency C-section. It was a scary delivery, with a rough recovery due to being overweight and tired all the time. About a year and a half later we got pregnant again and decided to have another C-section, which went a lot smoother… until I got an infection afterward. It was awful and I was in so much pain. The doctors attributed it most likely to my weight. After healing up, I decided it was time to work out again. I started slow and was just weight training… then BAM! 7 months post-baby, I found myself pregnant yet again! Although my weight was a little better this time around, I was overly tired and constantly frustrated. My body had gone through 3 pregnancies and 3 C-sections in 4 years!
My kids are very active, so I couldn’t take them to the park without getting winded. I distinctly recall climbing the stairs at my mom’s one day, afterward being so exhausted and out of breath that I starting seeping into a depression. I didn’t want to go out with my husband and hated family pictures. In January ’14, when our youngest was about 3 months old, my mom suggested we start working out together again.
We found a gym with daycare for the kids. I paired intense cardio with weight training and decided to track my eating with an app on my phone. I used it for every single bite I had, which I believe was a leading causes of my fat loss. I never realized how “little” things like hamburger meat and fast-food tacos really packed so much fat and carbs. So instead of hamburger meat, I switched to extra lean ground turkey, or onto chicken instead of red meat all the time, and adding in more fish. I also learned the difference between complex carbs and regular carbs… fascinating!
Up through September, I focused on weight training, cardio, and eating right. I was down about 50lbs, looking good, but felt that my progress was plateauing. I was in need of someone to be there working out with me. I needed that push after my mom had returned to work.
Things started to change again… my healthy habits started to become unhealthy tendencies. I never allowed myself to cheat. Even on vacation, I would take a single bite of dessert and then felt so guilty afterwards that I began to think it wasn’t worth it. Although my husband loved the new changes, and I loved finally have an energy to share with our kids, I was stressed from counting every last macro and then freaking out when the numbers didn’t match up. That’s when I decided to get together with a partner at the gym, one who had already gone through a major transformation and was now quite ripped!
My gym partner Armel and I started training together. I could feel my body changing even more than it had before. We laugh about it now, that I went from skinny to fat, to now actually fit and strong! We train together daily and he still pushes me to my limits. I can see my V-taper coming along nicely, more of that fit shape that I was hoping for. I’ve also learned to eat much cleaner, and yes, although I still count my macros… I don’t obsess over them, since I know I’m fueling my body with the right kind of food.
The other major change since September: my obsession with QUEST BARS!!! Armel introduced them to me after I’d insisted that I couldn’t eat protein bars, since they clearly had too much fat & carbs, so they wouldn’t fit into my daily limits. I learned about their unique “Net Carbs” breakdown and that these bars are actually full of healthy fats and yummy yummy goodness! I don’t feel guilty any more. Sometimes I do stop and think, “Wait, I should not be eating this?” and then I remember… it’s a Quest Bar! I could and should eat them daily! I enjoy sharing them with my husband, kids and reluctantly even with Armel… when he forgets his own post-workout snack 🙂
I can honestly say that I never could’ve done this without the support of my family and friends. Without their support and help, I doubt I’d be where I am today and definitely would not be able to continue on with this lifestyle. Not only am I now down to 19% body fat (I started at over 50%), but I’m a healthy size 8/10 and 150lbs. But I’m still working on my body fat percentage and building more muscle. Thank you, Quest, for allowing me to enjoy cheating clean and continuing on this journey!
Team Quest – We are here for you! Share your transformations and triumphs with us on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, or email them to us at [email protected]. Remember that these transformations took hard work, discipline and a plan. Quest products are a delicious component of, and not a substitute for, an exercise regimen and effective diet. The Quest Community is always there for you if you need help, inspiration or motivation!