"Supportive as well as encouraging"

25 years ago, I gave birth to my first daughter a month after I turned 17. Less than 2 years later, my second daughter came along, and the battling against being overweight started. For the next 23 years, I spent my life on a roller coaster ride with my weight. I’d start taking diet pills, stop eating except supper, and lose 30, 40 even 50 pounds in 5-6 months until I would stop taking the pills. I would then go into overdrive with eating (mostly junk and fast foods) and, in less than a year of starting the pills, I ended up gaining back everything I lost plus some!

I tried many times to take off the weight without the pills but had such strong cravings I couldn’t help giving in. Then I’d feel guilty knowing I should not have eaten this or that only to do it again an hour or two later. I got to the point that I was convinced I had my body so messed up with the yo-yo dieting and from taking the pills that it wasn’t possible to lose weight without taking them. I knew I had to do something or face some serious health issues.

Thanks to Chad and all the advice he has given me, I have finally been having success. The first week of March 2011, I was wearing mostly sweatpants and one pair of stretched-out size 16 jeans that were very tight around the waist. Now in August, I am into mostly size 8s, and I can even wear “skinny” jeans comfortably!

I believe signing up for classes and attending 5 days a week is the biggest reason for the success I‘ve been having. When I first thought about doing it 5 days a week, I was VERY intimidated. I just couldn’t imagine working out that hard day after day and surviving! I had nothing to lose, and I didn’t have to sign up for the third session if it was too much.

Well now that I started, I can’t stop! Chad is incredibly supportive as well as encouraging. If you have issues such as bad knees or shoulders, he will modify exercises so that it does not put stress on the injuries. He also has gotten to know what level each of us are individually, and he really keeps on us to make sure we are using enough weight and going as fast as we should be while, at the same time, using proper form. If he feels we are slacking, he will let us know, and he has us up the weights. Not only does Chad have us working our tails off, he has us stretching and also gives us advice and tricks for eating healthy.

Working out with my fellow CrossFitters has also helped. We encourage each other, share tips and healthy recipes and challenge each other. I am amazed at how much CrossFit has helped me in my everyday life, as well.

For strength training, I used to only use the machines, so I finally took Chad’s advice and got away from the machines and started to really work hard with body weight and dumbbells at CrossFit. When I told him I was concerned about becoming “bulky,” he assured me that females have to work REALLY hard and take supplements in order to get big like that. As you can see by my pictures, I still have a little ways to go, but I know that as long as I keep drinking water, eating the way Chad has taught me and stay in CrossFit where I am held accountable to Chad and my fellow CrossFitters, I WILL lose it.

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