Where to begin?
Some amazing AFS staff members reached out to me and asked me to share a little about my story. Not gonna lie, I freaked out for a hot second…I mean…really? Why me?? How do I put my journey in print??? F’n difficult mission!
I started my fitness journey 12 years ago, at the spunky age of 20. I started running, I started strength training, I started healthy eating habits, and I started getting fit! I loved my energy and I loved the way I felt. Through all of the years, fitness was a part of my life…but it wasn’t always as big of a part as I’d like it to be. I’ll be super honest here …as the years went by, I was trying, but I wasn’t consistent, and my effort wasn’t always amazing (aka…lackluster at best). Over the years, I had many ups and downs…stressful career, stressful life, zero time, competing priorities, you name it. Yes, I’ve used every excuse in the book…every single one. It was a cycle of good practices for a while, followed minimal activity, then no activity, lots of guilt, then great activity…you get the drift.
When I walked into AFS, I wasn’t feeling good…Plain and simple…I just felt like crap. I knew I needed a kick start…and AFS was my superhero kickstart. I walked in knowing I had the mind state for good habits, but I didn’t have all of the knowledge or accountability I needed for the positive change I was looking for. The AFS team has been great about educating me on what my body truly needs to accomplish the goals I have for myself. I was brutally honest with my coach about my habits, eating, everything. AFS guided me through the things I needed to understand to reach my personal goals (and called me out on my BS excuses to get me back on track!).
Here are some of the things I’ve learned while at AFS…
* it isn’t about eating too much or not enough, it is about eating the right foods at the right time! I thought I was eating the right about for my fitness goals…turns out I wasn’t eating nearly enough protein for my body to make a positive change for itself. Here I am putting in the hours at the gym, but I’m not fueling my body the right way. Nutritious food = fuel for a lifetime!
* getting a specific body goal requires a specific amount of sacrifice. Yes, I’d love to look celebrity fit. But here is the thing…I enjoy having dinners out with friends, I enjoy wine tastings, I enjoy meat and cheese plates. For now, I’m good with my extracurricular food habits and the progress my body is making. I still have the foods I love, and I balance this with other nutritious fuel my body needs as well. Realistic goals are achievable AND enjoyable throughout the journey.
* don’t be so hard in yourself when you have an off day. Hey, sometimes you gotta take a break and indulge, but do so wisely. I’ll go out and have wine and carbs on a Friday night and I don’t feel guilty. Why? Because I busted my ass in the gym for 5 days and I kicked ass. One indulgent meal and drinks is my reward for great work completed! And the next day, I go to the park and do my cardio. The following day I’m at AFS focusing on strength training.
* my former knowledge of fitness was elementary (at best). I’ve been working out for 12 years…12 years…and I’m learning new things at every AFS session. The team introduces me to great routines and challenges my body to try new things. The science is here and my body changes are proof that it works. The best part is that I’m learning things I can do at home too. Fitness at AFS and fitness at home = even healthier habits.
* this fitness journey is a marathon, not a sprint. I’m working to make sure the 60 year old Andrea is healthy and happy. I only have one body…and I know healthy habits now are what is needed to keep me healthy at 40, 50, 60+. The work I did over the last 12 years has helped prepare me for all of the awesome things I’m learning today. The work I’m doing now at AFS will help me for years to come.
* fitness isn’t scary, it is liberating. I am training my body to do new things, and my body is responding in a positive way. I’ve looked at that sheet so many times and thought…never going to be able to do that. And guess what….I do it!!! and I do it several times before they let me switch to something new. #thesechickenwingscandoit!
* In this crazy fitness journey, I’m only competing against one person …the person I was at my last session. What I love about this program is that starts and ends with me…my abilities…my progress. Each day I’m in the gym, I know I’m working towards my goals…and helping My 60+ year old self be a Badass!
Take away from today…
My words of wisdom for the day…do this for your future self. As I say during my workouts…I may not like this right now, but my body will appreciate this tomorrow. When I have a great workout, I enjoy my glass of wine and cheers my progress. #AFSFam