Routine: Kickboxing on Monday, Wednesday, Friday, and strength training on Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday.
Inspiration: I have begun fitness routines several times in the past. I began the most recent routine over two years ago. I can honestly say I have a routine now where in previous attempts it never reached the point of becoming a routine.
Stuck with it: I was quickly able to see progress, which motivated me to stick with it. I enjoy the workouts and the benefits they bring both physically and mentally. I want to continue this. I also am an instructor at my gym. I enjoy motivating and inspiring others to exceed what they thought they could during a workout. Because I am an instructor, I must set a good example, which means sticking with my workout routine.
Schedule: I make working out a priority each day. Generally, I work out in the evenings after work, but if I know ahead of time that I won’t be able to make an evening workout, then I plan ahead to attend a morning session.
Starting out: I had been on the diet and exercise roller coaster just like many others. I would have some success but typically get bored with exercising or get too busy and stop resulting in the loss of any improvements I had made. In March 2012, I got serious. I was tired of being tired, tired of not feeling good about myself and tired of being out of shape. I had also been trying to battle high cholesterol for several years. For about 12 months, I took medication to control it. I decided that I was too young to be on medication for the rest of my life.
Muscle mass: I gained muscle mass. I have dropped my body fat percent by 10 percent.
Favorite exercise: Kickboxing, abdominal/core exercises
Least favorite exercise: Burpees are an exercise that everyone loves to hate. They are a really good exercise and have several benefits, but they are not enjoyable to do.
Music: I like loud, upbeat music when I exercise. Often I will select an ’80s playlist at the gym for days I instruct strength training.
Diet: I eat six small meals every day and balance my carb/protein intake. This routine keeps me fueled throughout the day. I focus on good, nutritious foods — nothing frozen or canned. I don’t drink soda or eat fried food. I stay away from red meat but enjoy chicken, turkey and fish. I’ve become a fan of tofu, too. I haven’t eaten fast food in over two years. This may sound like a boring diet, but it really isn’t at all.
Favorite moment: Something I had wanted to do for a long time was to hike across the Grand Canyon. Part of me getting in shape was to prepare myself for that. In May 2013, three friends and I made the trip and hiked from North Rim to South Rim.
Motivation: I remind myself of the regret I will feel if I don’t go to the gym. Walking through the door is often the hardest part of working out. I’ve never regretted working out, but I have regretted not going at all.
Advice: Just believe in yourself and don’t give up. There will be hard days and you will want to quit, but keep pushing.
Fitness Fact: I enjoy obstacle-course racing and completed my second Spartan Sprint this year.