My Fitness Journey (so far)...
I have been blogging and vlogging for a few years now, with many of you following me throughout, but I have also had a lot of you just recently stumble upon either my website, Facebook page, or Youtube Channel. A lot of people don't realize the fitness journey that I have been taking (thus far), so I figured I would give a refresher course as to where I am coming from, where I currently stand, and where I am currently heading!
I guess you could say that I have not been your traditional "Beachbody transformation success story", as I have never been one to need to lose a lot of weight. Growing up, I was always an active kid. Consistently, every summer I would play rep (competitive) soccer, and then in the winter I would play rep (competitive) hockey. My diet wasn't the greatest growing up, but I was a naturally skinny kid (nicknamed "skin and bones" by my family) and was active all the time, so if anything, I struggled to keep my weight up.
My love and passion for soccer ended up taking me College, as I earned a scholarship to play NAIA Division 2 soccer. At College, I graduate in 3 years (2003-2006), earning my B.Sc. in Biochemistry: Pre-Medical. Playing Varsity soccer was not entirely successful, as I had to sit out my 2nd season with a debilitating back injury that ended up requiring surgery (December 2004). I worked hard to re-hab in the off-season, and returned for my 3rd, and final season, but soon after graduation, I started developing some pretty bad habits.
I never really worried about working out when I was younger, as playing sports naturally kept me active. Once I graduated and settled into a full-time job, my exercising definitely took a back seat, not to mention some bad eating and drinking habits. I ended up out of shape and not happy with my lifestyle.
My poor lifestyle choices even lead to some pretty bad bouts of depression and anxiety! That moment clicked, when I realized that I could not keep continuing on my current path, so one morning, like so many others, I saw the infomercial for P90X!
When I first started P90X, I was totally and completely baffled by how "out of shape" I actually was. I always assumed that I was in shape, and a decent athlete, so I really didn't think that a home workout program would be this challenging! I worked hard at the program and made it through a few rounds, but my diet was certainly lacking. Although I was in pretty decent shape, and was playing in a men's league competitive soccer, I didn't look the way I wanted to, and knew that there was something else that I needed to change besides just working out. I needed to start focusing on my diet, as that was just as much of a contributing factor, of not more so than exercise alone!
The P90X workouts started getting easier, and I was definitely improving. I went from being able to barely eek out 5 chin-ups in one set to cranking out 8+ every set during a workout. I was feeling good about myself, but still not looking the greatest.
I was starting to realize the importance of fuelling m body though. I started to make the connection between nutrition to perform, look, and feel better rather than to just fill my gut. In the mean time, I was growing my Beachbody workout library. By the end of 2010, I was starting to collect Tony Horton's One on One Series, as well as use the P90X+ series. I also competed my first ever half marathon in October 2010!
Throughout 2011, I dabbled with various hybrids, also training for Warrior Dash (July 2011), and then my 2nd half marathon in October 2011.
In December 2011, after my son Evan was born, I stumbled upon the promotional video for the World's Toughest Mudder from just a few weeks prior. I immediately knew that this was what I wanted to do next year!
A week after my son was born, my copy of P90X2 arrived, and I jumped into that program right away. P90X2 quickly became one of my favourite programs from Beachbody, due to the immense amount of thought and science that they put into it. I knew that this (P90X2) would be a great tool for me to use in my training goals to reach the World's Toughest Mudder in 2012.
I signed up for Tough Mudder Toronto, to compete in August 2012, and immediately began training it. I also competed in my 2nd Warrior Dash in July 2012, as a sort of lead-up to Tough Mudder. In the back of my mind, I knew I wanted to qualify for the World's Toughest Mudder by finishing in the top 5% of the participants, so I trained hard throughout 2012 in order to qualify.
My goal was achieved when I received word from Tough Mudder Headquarters that I did in fact qualify for the World's Toughest Mudder!
There was no time to rest after I returned from Tough Mudder Toronto, as I almost immediately jumped into training to 'bridge' my fitness between Tough Mudder Toronto to the World's Toughest Mudder which was taking place in November.
My training went well, although there was a lot of endurance training, and I lost more weight than what I had anticipated. I went on to compete at the World's Toughest Mudder 2012 and came home ready for my new goals.
November was also the month that I began taking Shakeology. I will be honest, I was pretty skeptical of Shakeology before I started it. I have always been a fan of Beachbody and their products, but I got so sick and tired of so many different Coaches literally trying to pour the stuff down my throat!
When I became a Beachbody Coach myself on October 1st 2012, I didn't even sign up for Shakeology at that time. But after a month, I realized that there was no point bad-mouthing the product unless I gave it a good, honest, 30-day sample. I haven't turned back since!
Since I had lost quite a bit of weight during my WTM training, as well as at the event itself, the timing to start Beachbody's program Body Beast, along with using Shakeology as a nutritional aide, could not have been better!
Thinking back to when I was younger, I have always been naturally skinny, so I was really looking forward to a program like Body Beast to see what kind of results (if any) I could get with it. I became a huge fan of the program right away, and, well...I think the results will do all of the talking!
After I completed Body Beast, I have played around with a few different modifications to the program, and have recently started my own strength training program, combined with Shaun T's latest program Focus T25!
I go back and look at how far I have come over these past few years. Not only have I changed my physical appearance a few times, but I have also changed mentally. I now see exercise as not only a way to 'treat' myself, but to also challenge myself and to compete! I enjoy feeling good, looking good, and challenging myself in new ways possible. I hope that I encourage and inspire all of you to go out and do the same!