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Kristen’s first 2 months at RWS

3
Dec

Kristen’s first 2 months at RWS

[Note: Kristen won the Fall Shred competition by
consistently being more dedicated than anyone else,
and subsequently made faster progress
than any other RWS athlete in years.
Example: when she started out her deadlift was 35#;
she hit 145# for a perfect set of 5 just six weeks later.]

Background:

Growing up, I was a multi-sport athlete (field hockey, track, and softball)
and trained dancer in a variety of techniques.
In my adult life, not too much specific training apart from
running a few miles a day on a treadmill.

 

What changed the most:

I learned how to eat better and more efficiently to consume
the nutrition my body needed to withstand the rigorous workouts.

First and foremost, my eating habits.

Correctly calculating and tracking my macros was a little tedious at first.
I ended up creating a spreadsheet for myself with a list of typical
foods I ate on a daily and/or weekly basis as a quick reference guide
so I wasn’t constantly forgetting to read the nutrition label.
I made entering my food into my spreadsheet a part of my eating routine,
entering in the macros either before I ate or immediately after.
That way I didn’t lose track or forget.
I took my spreadsheet with me at all times if I knew I would be having
a meal away from home so I knew exactly how much I had left for the day.

Weighing my food was extremely beneficial.
Not just for easily calculating macros, but also
training my brain/eye to see what 4oz of food actually looks like.
Hitting my protein was never an issue since I’m such a fan of
chicken, Greek yogurt, and protein powder.
The carbs, not terrible considering the number I had to hit was pretty reasonable.
But the fat, on the other hand, proved to be a bit challenging.
I ate more peanut butter in those 6 weeks than I think I have my whole life.
Good thing I’m partial to Jiffy.
Overall, I just learned how to eat better and more efficiently to consume
the proper nutrition my body needed to withstand the rigorous workouts.

Secondly – I had to change my perception of lifting heavy things.
Prior to joining the Shred and RWS,
I’d never lifted anything heavier than a 10lb dumbbell.
(slightly embarrassed to admit this now considering the progress I’ve made.)
I never went into the “weight area” in my gym
because everything looked so intimidating.
I convinced myself I couldn’t lift any of those things,
and if I tried I wouldn’t be doing so correctly
so I dubbed the “weight area” scary and that was that.
I had to come into the Shred with a a fresh perspective
and change my thinking toward heavy things,
since I had made up my mind and really
wanted to learn something I had been afraid of doing for so long.

Results:

I am conquering my fear more each day and can feel myself
become a little less apprehensive when it comes to
trying a new workout or increasing my weight.
I was able to successfully lose 3.5 inches
(2 from the waist, 1.5 from the hips) as well as 3lbs,
and improved my fitness baseline by 33%.
If those aren’t accomplishments to be proud of, I don’t know what are.
When the pre-Shred baseline workout took me over 25 minutes to complete,
I immediately wanted to run for the hills.
I remember thinking “what the heck did I get myself into…?”
But the competitive athlete side of my brain took over and I became
determined to improve on everything, even if it was just in small successes.
I am conquering my fear more each day and can feel myself
become a little less apprehensive when it comes to
trying a new workout or increasing my weight.

Things learned:

If you really want to make a change,
“I don’t have time” or “I’m too busy” simply doesn’t work.

Aside from everything else I’ve mentioned, I learned
the importance of meal prep and workout scheduling. 
If you really want to make a change,
“I don’t have time” or “I’m too busy” simply doesn’t work.
I put 5 days’ worth of lunches together and threw them all into
separate tupperwares for the grab-and-go convenience.
I knew I had to get to workouts during the week and
if I couldn’t make it to my usual time, I’d figure out
which other time worked best for my schedule.
There really are no excuses, and I humbly admit that
since I used to come up with every excuse in the book.

Also – you can get your burger lettuce-wrapped pretty much anywhere.
You just have to ask. No more need for excessive burger buns!

Advice for new people:

If I can do it, you can do it.
Go in with an open mind, follow the directions, and ask questions.
If I can do it, you can do it.
I had no preconceived notions as to what was going to happen
during this challenge and since I got it into my head I wanted to win,
I had no other choice than to follow the program and not deviate.
The coach doesn’t create unrealistic guidelines.
They are there because he knows by following along,
listening to your body, and doing things correctly,
you will get results.
I really am the perfect example of it.
I’d never taken fish oil in my life.
Points for fish oil?
I got fish oil.
Multi-vitamins used to make me sick.
Points for multi-vitamins?
Get multi-vitamin, adjust serving accordingly by
breaking it in half and taking in 2 doses.
I hit my macros, weighed and prepped my food,
and went to the workouts as often as possible.
If I didn’t understand, I asked questions.
I wanted to understand the changes my body
was going through and why we had to do certain things.
You can’t completely devote yourself to a challenge,
or anything new for that matter, without wanting to fully understand it.
If you don’t, you’re just going through the motions
and that’s not how you get the results you want.

How this was important:

There’s no better feeling of accomplishment than
hitting and exceeding goals you set for yourself.
I wanted to learn something new, I was unhappy with my body,
I was new to California and needed a gym to join,
I wanted to do something I was afraid of,
and I wanted to eat better.
So I did something about all of these things and
gave the RWS 6-week Fall Shred a shot.
It became important for me to truly dedicate myself
to this program so I could conquer some, if not all, of my new goals.
As I progressed throughout the Shred, all those goals intertwined.
I ended up learning something new while transforming my body,
making new friends at a new gym, and overcoming a fear,
while learning how to eat better.
I’m proud of myself for not just sticking with the program,
but following through to completion.
There’s no better feeling of accomplishment than
hitting and exceeding goals you set for yourself.

[Want to get in on what Kristen’s got? Click here!]

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