Progress…Slowly, but Surely

Josh and I have been working hard to establish consistent habits when it comes to going to the gym and preparing meals. We have been going to the gym four days a week for about an hour of weight lifting and we have started to incorporate ~10 minutes of cardio each day (when we have time). Josh has been a rockstar when it comes to meal prep and I have been so grateful for the time he puts in making sure our meals are set for the week. We did another weigh in with pictures and even took measurements to better track our progress! We agreed it’s better to track our progress through multiple means, not just the number on the scale. As we sat down together and looked at the pictures, while we were full of criticism, we were also able to see differences, even if they are small. It’s hard to stay motivated when the scale hasn’t moved much, but creating a foundation for a lifetime of healthy habits is going to take time.

We have found that weekends are very challenging. After a work week of disciplined eating and working out, it’s easy to “let loose” on the weekend with eating out. Our goal is to have two cheat meals a week but sometimes those cheat meals bleed into an entire cheat day. This is a habit we are working on continually. We are also very excited for warmer weather so we can start hiking on the weekends. Josh is also teaching me how to play racquetball, I need a lot of work but it is a fun way to get cardio in!

Proud Fiancé

It’s easy to step on the scale and see disgust in your numbers. But at the end of the day, success is not always about what the scale says.

January has been a month of ups and downs for Katie and I when it comes to this wedding challenge. The beginning of the month is hard with so much time off of work. But we’ve finally built our routine again and we’ve been pretty good throughout the week. Weekends are tough due to the social factor, but that is something that takes time to work on. With a little self reflection and self control, we’ll get better. But I didn’t log on today to talk about our eating.

I’m the type of guy who gets excited about lifting weights and when people hit big lifts. I help run the summer weight room program for the high school football team I coach at, so any and every PR (personal record) attempt gets me energized. I’m not any different when Katie and I lift weights together.

Katie is a little different than the football guys I coach. Instead of looking to get a big 1,2 or 3 rep max, she’s trying to build some muscle and lose some fat, and is lifting in the 8-10 range on most of her lifts. Some of ya’ll may be asking, where is there any excitement in that?

Well, Katie has lifted for many years now and knows how to do most lifts. She just hasn’t had the person to push her. It’s natural for me to challenge athletes to get better, and once she stepped into the weight room with me, she’s finally found that person to push her, and challenge her to try new things.

Some call it newbie gains, but I don’t care. I truly see her work paying off. She’s trying out new lifts (deadlifts) and took the time to learn correct form (props to her) and now she’s upping the weight on her sets. And she’s upping her weight on all her lifts! In the past, she’d just keep the same weight every week, which isn’t terrible (physical exercise of any kind is better than none), but now she’s just pushing herself and she looks forward to the challenge each week. It’s fun to watch her lift and she motivates me to challenge myself in the gym as well (and that includes the newly added cardio every day).
It’s a slow process seeing the results, but I am really excited for her over this journey. It’s not easy, but once she starts seeing results in the mirror, I think she’ll become addicted to the daily grind of going to the gym and tossing around some heavier weights! All this being said, I’m a proud fiancé and I have enjoyed every minute of embarking on this challenge with her.   

Stay the Course

As I’ve continued to work toward a healthy lifestyle (and the short-term goal of feeling confident on my wedding day), I am learning to celebrate little victories and not allowing setbacks to ruin my progress.

I weighed myself this morning and I was 178 pounds. I felt a bit defeated as I stared at the number and started thinking back on my last week and how it was possible for me not to lose weight. First of all, I had to remind myself that I am working hard in the gym and seeing improvements in my strength. Second, I allowed myself two cheat dinners and was a little bit too relaxed for my post-church meal on Sunday (going to our favorite mexican restaurant that has the best chips and salsa).

In the past, when my weight hasn’t been what I wanted it to, I usually give up or just let myself go for the day. Today though, I continued in my plan, reminding myself that my progress is NOT defined by the number on the scale, but by the way I feel. I feel more in control of my eating, I know I can have a cheat meal without it ruining my eating for the week, and I feel as though I am moving in the right direction. These are feelings I want to continue, and if I allow the number on the scale to define my progress, then I would be tempted to throw in the towel and I would be back to square one (or worse).

Instead, I have decided I will focus on the things I am doing well. I have been going to the gym consistently and have been challenging myself with the weights I am using. I am eating out less because I have healthy food prepared (well, my wonderful fiance has it prepared for me). I am also recognizing the moments where I am experiencing negative emotions that make me want to turn to food for comfort. As I recognize these feelings, I remind myself that eating crappy food isn’t going to make those emotions go away, but only make me feel worse, and I have been able to avoid emotionally eating because I’ve been more aware in these moments.

I will continue to work hard for the results I want and in time, I know I will see results! Thanks for reading!

Humble Beginnings

Our weight loss story begins on December 15th, 2018. That’s when we decided to have our first picture shoot and weigh in (please excuse our green/white patches on the wall; we didn’t complete our paint job). It wasn’t until after that we thought to create a blog to hold ourselves accountable.

These pictures and the weigh ins were extremely humbling. I won’t bore you with the details, but let’s just say that these pictures are our motivation to pull up our bootstraps and get to work on our health. However, life never works out quite the way we want it to.

Like I said, the date we took these pictures and weighed in was December 15th. Our engagement, multiple Christmas parties, Christmas and New Years celebrations all followed. When making lifestyle changes, the hardest time to make this kind of change is during the season of endless sweets and copious amounts of alcohol being consumed. Needless to say, our weight loss journey didn’t truly begin here.

However, not all was lost during the Christmas season. Katie joined my weight lifting regimen and we’ve built a healthy habit of lifting together 4 days a week. We’ve both seen strength increases (along with a body weight increase for myself…) over the past month and that is a motivator to keep up the good work together in the weight room.

What we are looking to improve this month:

  • Eating habits – We’ve started food prepping well, but we still have a hard time saying “No” when unhealthy food is prepared for us.
  • Cardio – As I noted above, our weightlifting has improved! But, as has always been my weakness, our cardio is non existent. It is time to add a few steps or a game or two of racquetball to the end of our workouts.

We have 172 days until we tie the knot. Continue to follow to see how our journey unfolds. If you have a minute, leave a comment. We’d love to hear your encouraging thoughts! Thanks again for reading!

Our Wedding Challenge Begins…

In order for there to be a wedding fitness challenge, there first needs to be an engagement. Here’s a short but sweet version.

We started the day with a morning hike before starting our holiday weekend activities were set to begin. I (Josh) took Katie on a hike up in beautiful Golden, Colorado (yes, where Coors is brewed). She has a list a of parks she’d like to visit, so I thought I’d surprise her by taking her to one of them (South Table Mountain to be exact). We took the dog and zigged and zagged our way up the mountain before we made it to the top. The top of the mountain, or mesa, overlooks the city and has a delightful view of Colorado’s Rocky Mountains.

Katie and I took our fair share of pictures while at the top and shared a few moments observing God’s beautiful creations before Katie decided it was time to go. Not wanting to lose the moment, I grabbed a picture from my bag and gave it to Katie. It had a note on the back which gave me just a few seconds to finally prepare, and as she finished reading, I held her hands, said a few words (we both don’t remember what I said!) and knelt down and asked for her hand in marriage. She said YES! and the party was on!!

Thanks for taking the time to read about our special day! Join us next time as we discuss our challenge and our first weigh in..

Welcome to our Journey!

We are Josh and Katie and we have set a goal to be at a healthy weight and body fat percentage by the time our July wedding rolls around!

Here is a little information about us:

Katie:

I have always struggled with sticking to a specific program when it comes to a healthy lifestyle. I have tried many diets like Keto, Paleo, the South Beach diet, and many others. I was never able to sustain these diets for long periods of time because the diets were so rigid. In my past I also struggled with Bulimia. I now have a much healthier relationship with food, but I have a long way to go in sustaining a healthy diet and workout plan. The main reason I want to write is to work on some accountability. I’m not some fitness guru or health expert, but I do desire a better overall standard of living. With that in mind, I want to be as honest as possible about my journey moving forward. I will be transparent in the struggles I face and how I overcome them. I am a full-time special education teacher and a full-time student working on my master’s degree online. While life can get very busy, I know how crucial it is to take care of myself on a daily basis.

A little bit of information on my health background:

As I mentioned previously, I struggled with an eating disorder the last couple years of high school into college. I had an unhealthy relationship with food and my body image. I was diagnosed with PCOS (Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome) when I was 17. I was also diagnosed with depression my freshman year of college. Each of these factors affected my relationship with food and how I saw myself. I ran cross country, lifted weights, and was on the swim team throughout high school, but after that It was much harder to keep my weight in a healthy range. In the past couple years I have been fairly consistent with weight training 2-4 days a week and my cardio and eating habits have been pretty hit or miss. Moving forward, I have a few things I would like to do in order to reach my goals. I would like to eat meals that contain a protein, lots of veggies, and sometimes complex carbs. I want to give myself some grace one day a week (Saturday) and make that my one day to “cheat”. I’d like to lift weights at least 3 times a week and incorporate cardio 2 times a week. I enjoy hiking, once the weather gets nicer I would like to add that in as well. My ultimate goal is to become healthier and establish better habits, in terms of numbers I would like to lose 20 pounds. Right now I weigh 175 at 5’4”, ideally I would like to be at 155 but I also know it isn’t all about the number on the scale. Ultimately, I would like to weigh within a healthy range for my age/height. I plan to update the blog at least once a week with updates, thanks for reading and I hope you are able to gain something from reading!

Josh:

My journey with my weight has been an ongoing battle for me since I was in elementary school. I moved out to Colorado when I was in 1st grade. At that time, I was a skinny kid who could run a bit (3rd place in the Turkey Trot as a 2nd grader…big time runner). Somewhere along the way, I began gaining weight and was soon the fat kid in school. Even though I played 3 sports, I was still the fat kid year after year. I grew into my own as a high school football player, became fairly strong (1000 lb lifting club as a senior) and played Rugby. Needless to say, I was a good athlete. Then college rolled around and so did the freshman 15..or 20. Then came my 21st birthday and my enjoyment of drinking beer grew. I stopped going to the gym as I got busy with school and work and the socialization that college brings. Before I knew it, I was 280 pounds at my college graduation.

Shortly after my graduation in May of 2014, I knew there was a problem and I began my weightloss journey. After a year, I got down to 255 pounds, which I thought was good progress. However, that progress was stalled and I bounced around from 240-255. Fast forward to January of 2018, I weighed in at 255 pounds and that’s when I made a real commitment. I buckled down in the kitchen and the weightroom, and in August, I got all the way down to 220 pounds. However, as a football coach, I’m on the go 6 days a week, food prep got inconsistent during the season and now my weight has jumped back up to the 230s.

I’m not a health expert but I do know enough about how to live a healthy lifestyle. My goal may not so much be my weight loss, but more so getting my body fat percentage back down to a healthy range. I want to continue to build strength on my core lifts: Squats, Deadlifts and Bench Press while continuing to build good habits in the kitchen.

Sorry about the long post! Hopefully they’re not so long every time. We appreciate your time and hope you follow along with our journey!