"I am happy and healthy. I run, mountain bike, and lead an active lifestyle! Fitness and life wellness are now a major part of my life."
Growing up in California, I was skinny all through school. I ran track, roller-skated every day, and was very active. As I got older and entered the workforce, I began to eat less healthfully with convenience foods. Nonetheless, I never really gained too much weight. It wasn't until I moved to Florida at age 38 that I really started to put on weight. I quit smoking (after 20 years), and as a reward for such an achievement, I gave myself permission to eat anything I wanted. I felt I was gaining weight, so I joined a gym, but because of highway construction, it took too long to get there, and I failed to go regularly.
I was lost — I had no idea what to do, and I gained almost 60 pounds in five years. I rarely let myself enjoy the beautiful beaches in Florida because I was not happy in my own skin, much less in a bathing suit. I hid inside for nearly five years
The event that really prompted me to lose weight was turning 45. My fiancé and I moved to Colorado and it seemed as if everyone was fit and healthy except me! There were plenty of things to do — hiking, fishing, camping — but I found myself once again avoiding people. My fiancé and I didn't know anyone when we moved to Colorado, and we both ate poorly, didn't exercise, and put on even more weight. I was scared we were both going to develop diabetes or another weight-related illness. I was READY to get healthy!
I heard about Jillian's program when I began listening to her radio show. I had been a fan of hers since watching The Biggest Loser, but it wasn't until I heard her speak at length about healthy living that I decided to check out her Web site. Her words about living healthfully just clicked with me. It's very simple for me to listen to Jillian and use her knowledge to help myself eat and live organically, better my health, and improve my life! I ate almost 100 percent organic, and honestly, once I started doing that, the weight started coming off. I also limited my calories per day to between 1200-1600 depending. I mixed it up quite a bit to keep my body guessing! For exercise, I started mostly by walking around my neighborhood and doing old VHS workout tapes until I ordered Jillian's DVD 5-pack! My fiancé bought me a treadmill for Christmas, and I've gone from walking the entire time to running! I never thought I could run!
What has helped me the most is listening to Jillian — taking the knowledge and information she shares and believing in myself. Jillian has touched me in a way that no one else has. She helped me turn my life around. Her radio show, blogs, and books speak to me in an understanding and compassionate way. I consider her my life coach. She gives me the knowledge, and I apply it to my life, but she also gave me the courage to find my own wisdom. I have the power, so between the two of us, I can do anything!
Activities now: Life! I was sheltering myself from the world because I was not happy, and I hid away. Now I am healthy and much more confident. I have hiked several difficult trails here in Colorado that I would never have thought I could. I run, hike, and lead an active lifestyle! I’ve gone on wellness cruises and done fitness boot camps. Instead of sitting on the couch after work, I go for a walk or run and enjoy the fresh air! Fitness and wellness are now a major part of my life. I love working out and even have my own gym. I have earned numerous certifications, including wellness coach, food psychology coach and mind-body fitness coach. I go out of my way to try new things. I seek out healthy activities. I say 'yes' more often. I dream big and I am no longer afraid to ask for what I want.
Best compliments: The most meaningful compliments have been from the members in Jillian's community. Knowing I might have inspired someone makes it especially worthwhile. Seeing others reach their goals inspires me!
Advice for others: Understand that this is a lifestyle change. Don’t be afraid to try new foods, new activities, and new ways of thinking. Commit to yourself and to your dreams. Live the life you want by “putting action behind your intentions”. Don’t be afraid to ask for help. Measure your food and count your calories. Drink 80-plus ounces of water a day. Stop drinking diet drinks and eat “clean” foods. I have prepared many of Jillian's recipes, and they are amazing! I eat more fresh foods and am always up for trying something new. Also, enjoy dark, organic chocolate (or whatever your “treat” might be) and don’t deprive yourself. Journaling and vision boards help me stay focused; they inspire me, and allow me to see my progress.
As for the new me, I am thankful to be healthy and strong, and that I can share my experiences with others. I thank Jillian for sharing her knowledge and helping me find my healthy life!
*Participants can expect to lose 1-2 pounds per week.