Saturday, October 31, 2015

From The Outside Looking In: A Transformation Story

Instead of talking about myself in this post, I decided we can focus on my readers. I had a 'good' idea of interviewing my friend Brittney H., who had just competed this past weekend and won her Pro card at the INBF amazing before/after story since she had also come from a place of insecurity, but interviews with successful athletes ask the same typical questions with the same typical answers. So, my husband and I opted for a different approach. 

It is an interview of Brittney from a different perspective. From the outside looking in. We all are typically held back from pursuing our goals because we are concerned what others in our support system may think, and it is those possible negative judgements that make us hesitant. In fact, those insane ideas going through your head are the complete opposite from the truth.

We (my husband Sam and I) interviewed Colleen, Brit's mom, so we can see Britt's transformation through someone else’s eyes instead of her own.

Intrigued?  Alright, here we go...

We started off by going back to Brittneys' early years. "Well, she was a very self-conscious girl.  She would always be covered up." as Colleen mimicked pulling an imaginary sweater all the way up to her chin.  

"Oh no, she might get mad at me for saying this" Colleen said jokingly. She collected her thoughts and in a serious tone responded "it was really her body image and her bad eating habits.  She would not try anything we ate as a family.  She wouldn’t try anything new.  She never ate red meat and she still doesn’t, which was really hard for my husband and I because we were on a beef farm. She was a very picky eater. So, it was Kraft Macaroni and Cheese, chicken fingers and chicken nuggets…all processed stuff...all the time...that's it!  When it came to her school lunches, it was Cheese Whiz buns...hmm...maybe for about 8 years.  There was granola bars...that breadstick thing that you dip into the cheese.  Like I said, she wasn’t a good eater."

She continued "The rest of the family would eat beef, potatoes, vegetables and salad. That was our regular meal.  It wasn’t the healthy kind either.  I have to admit.  That's probably why I was overweight all my life.  At the beginning, we would try to make her…you know...say stuff to her like...'you are not leaving the table until you eat this.'  You would try it at least but it didn’t matter how long, she would just leave it and wouldn’t try it. I always cooked her what she wanted because I would know she would at least eat least it would be something, rather than nothing.  So that part is my fault.  Because, yes, I cooked two different meals.  I cooked for us and I cooked for her.  It was very hard.

"Whenever we confronted her about her habits, she would be mad at us if we brought it up too much.  We would talk about it, my husband and myself but we wouldn’t talk about it with her anymore because she would cry or would be sad & it didn’t help anyways. I remember her once trying red meat & that was it.  She wouldn’t try it anymore. I just really forgot about her eating habits when she was younger until now. Wow!"

We then shifted the focus of the interview to Brittneys' beginning of her transformation and competitions. 

"I noticed her eating habits start to change for the better after she started going out with Ryan…so that’s been 5 years now...  He took her to different restaurants.  He would eat anything and then she kind of started eating different stuff.  Now, it’s mostly chicken and salmon.  Although before she was happy, she was still scared and self-conscious. Once she started on her goals, (Sam) helped her through that and then she became more confident.

"I think the turning point was when she started coming here to Snap...that’s when I started hearing your name.  Sam this and Sam that."

I quickly pulled out my phone to show a before picture of Brittney to Colleen that was taken when she first started her journey. 

First Picture: Brittney in Hawaii in 2010.
Second Picture: Brittney at the INBF Champsionships in Oct 2015

"Oh my god!  Wow!  It’s such a difference seeing it side by side.  That’s gotta be a picture from Hawaii....about 5 years ago."

I pulled out my phone once more to show a before picture of Brittney when she first started training at Snap Fitness Leduc. 

"Oh yes. That's her.  I remember when she started though, she was very cranky.  She wasn’t herself. She was snappy.  It didn’t seem like a happy time but I think that was with the eating and changing everything.  Now, her father is old school.  He was just used to her being more curvy. So, his reaction to her changes was she was too skinny or thin.  We had seen her & Ryan together during her competition and it was a little tense…just the whole process.  I had also seen it with my son & his girlfriend too.  It was tense.  He wasn’t as supportive.  Whereas Ryan has always been supportive of Brittney."

She continued "I've always have said I don’t care what you do.  I don’t care how you of it.  I just want you to be happy.  So, if this is what you choose to do, then go for it.  If it wasn’t for her, I wouldn’t of done this.  There is no way!  I know that.  How can she be so fit & open up a fitness store & her mother is overweight?  How can I?  Like…I dunno.  I was very happy she did that.  Doing her competition…that was a big achievement & it kind of makes you think, it’s a lot of hard work but that you can do it.  She’s come a long way & I just never thought she would be where she is today.  We are very proud of her & her accomplishments & everything that she has done."

We finally came around full circle and took some time reflect on Colleen and her own journey.

"It was right around Britts' first competition where I kept thinking she is doing this & doing that and that  I should try to be healthier. I never had the motivation to do it before.  I did take a long time though.  I had the help of Rhonda.  She was going to start working out & I wasn’t.  She said she was going to start with Britt with personal training & said 'let’s do it together'.  It was doing it with someone else that helped.  It’s easier at the beginning to work with somebody I found.  Also, it was healthy cooking, following my meal plan and exercise plan.  Where before I tried the whole diet thing to lose 20 pounds but you would end up gaining it back.  I was more motivated this time.  How can I sit on the other side of the counter at the store & help her when I am overweight?  Do you think anybody wants to come in & buy anything there or take me seriously?"

"I want to be around.  I want to be around for grandchildren *chuckle* AND NOT JUST DOGS!" 

"I can NOW do it on my own.  I don’t want to push the gym to the side because I am going to fall back into that bad habit I was in before.  You have to make it a part of your life.  Now that I see it can be done like Britt, you have to incorporate the healthy eating and working out into your life & it’s really not that hard when it’s only an hour or an hour and 1/2 out of the day.  You just gotta do it."

"I never enjoyed the whole process at the beginning. There are some days where I wanted to choke people.  You see people who are fit at the gym and you’re overweight & you think 'what am I doing here?' but then as you progress, it’s great!  Now, I see other people at the gym who are overweight & think 'good for you...good for you for coming & good for you for doing this' because I didn’t want to be dead at 60 years old.  I am down to 1/2 pill from 2 pills in my blood pressure medication."

"Like I said, if it wasn’t for Brittney pushing me,  I don’t think I would of ever made it.   It was because she was my daughter & I wanted to show her that I could actually do this."


With Brittney, although the whole experience was a hard one, what made it easier was having the positive support system that she had.  You see, it's always the people who you surround yourself with that either help you (even in the smallest way) or deter you away from your goals. Say adios to those Negative Nancy's!!!  It's absolutely not fair to you to always second guess your healthy decisions.  No one needs that constant reminder that it is possible to go back to those old habits. And if they do want to stay in your life, make them understand they have to respect your life and what you do with it. Plain and simple. If not, they are disrespecting you and your decisions and can just bugger off. 

Another thing a person has to understand is besides having a great support system, that a healthy decision or a fitness decision has to be made by YOU and only you. 

When is it the right time to start on your journey?!?  The answer?  Only you know that. There is no 'perfect time'.  Don't wait for perfect conditions because it will never happen. Just do it!!  You'll be thankful that you did. Happiness within yourself is the key here and if being healthy makes you happy, then you know your on the right path. 

Stay the course and you'll find that finish line. Trust. 


Friday, October 23, 2015

Trust Me, I've Been There!

This is a story...make that two stories about strong women. They were lost, slowly found their way and now, found the "light". Sounds corny, right?? Bah, who cares. I could of used any analogy and I picked the corny one because I Love Corn!!!

Anyways, if you are reading this, maybe this woman IS YOU. Maybe...just COULD be you because you have just begun your own story.  What ever the case may be, let's begin the tale. 

My Story (short version):
I was a content 160 pound girl. Had a good school life, a boyfriend who was my world and had family/friends who had my back. My world suddenly fell apart when my so-called amazing boyfriend dumped me OVER THE FRICKIN PHONE.  What a jerk!!!  I wanted revenge. It was the type of revenge where when he saw me at a mutual friends' bday, his mouth would just drop to the floor and think to himself "dang, I missed out."  Yup!  This is how my world turned upside down for the better.

I found fitness.

It was a great outlet for me to get all my anger out in the open with no judgements.  I loaded up my gym playlist with empowering women and songs about crappy ex-boyfriends.  I would spend hours upon hours at the gym. I even remember this one time when the front desk attendant at my gym said "wow, I definitely am noticing your body change."  I was so pleased that I'm pretty sure I wrote a blog post about it when I first started my journey (circa 2009).  Anyways, these types of amazing comments truly motivated me to keep pushing forward.  All those useless hours spent crying over the whole breakup had now been used to better ME. With seeing my trainer on a regular, clean eating and tons sweat sessions on my own at the gym, it helped me realize that I was the driving force behind my own happiness...not him.  I noticed I slowly became more empowered in all my life decisions and less worried about getting revenge on a certain scumbag ex-boyfriend. My heart was stronger and so was my mind and body. I was building my world back with all things that made me happy and I didn't need a man to do it...just like that Pussycat Dolls songs (totally had that on my gym playlist lol).  He was now just a faint shadow in the background of the mirror I was standing in front of. 

It was just me. I had the answer all along. 

You can never really find your true identity unless you are willing to make sacrifices and just be honest with yourself.  It's a journey to take alone but one that's worth while in the end. A person has to work hard and want it BADLY enough in order to obtain it.  "It" being anything really...goal weight...a job...even HAPPINESS!

It was The Old me vs. The New me and The New me WON! Bye bye old self. It was nice knowing you.

Now, it's all about balance. Balancing my life with work, fitness, owning a business, friendships, family, meal prepping, cheat meals and taking some time for me to reflect on how far I've come.  Now weighing in at 139lbs, I can say that I've been there. I truly know what it's like.  That's what's really great about my blog. It's my online reminder to never go back to where I once was.  

Taken Today: I love me!

Onto Story Numero 2:

Tammy's Story (Mon, Oct 19, 2015):
Ding Dong!  The doorbell rang and I rushed to get it early morning at Snap Leduc. Tammy, one of my newer members looked quite distracted.  No gym clothes or gym bag equals red flag in my mind. Something was wrong.  

I asked "What brings you into the club today Tammy?"
She replied "I came in to cancel my membership."  I asked "why?"
She said "I don't feel comfortable in the gym like how I was reassured I would when I signed up.  There are so many extremely fit people here. Are there even any overweight people?"
I said "I understand exactly what you are going through Tammy. You are not alone. I've been in a place where I too once was uncomfortable and unhealthy. She seemed shocked (like she didn't believe me) but I continued "but you know what?....I just ignored them because at the end of the day, all you have is you. These are your goals and who cares about theirs. Yes, I may have done a fitness show and obtained a body like that (*points to the image of my transformation in the wall) but who says that is the model of health?  It's about balance in your life. Just trying to stay healthy and I believe that is what your goal should be too!  When you go to sleep at night, it's just you. You have to make the decision to better yourself and I know you know that this is going to help you get there.  And to answer your other question...YES, we do have people who struggle with their weight but they too have setbacks every once in a while like my member Jacqui. Every time she falls, she just picks herself up and keeps coming back again."
Sounding defeated, Tammy responds  "I just have tried all the gyms out there...Spa Lady, the LRC and now to quit here. There are no gyms left in Leduc. It's just a cycle. I get really excited to join and am all-in but crash hard and just quit after a few months. My husband says I am just wasting money. It's this cycle that I can't break."
I proclaimed "It stops NOW. The vicious cycle of starting and quitting ends here today. I am not going to let it happen."
As I finish my sentence, I see Tammys' face start to redden and tears fall from her eyes.  I even start to tremble and my voice starts to quiver as I say " I will do whatever it takes to help you. We are here to help you.  Tammy, you are going to make me cry."
We both laugh as I continue the conversation. " I am going to set you up with a consultation with one of our trainers. They are going to help you with your goals...even if you see them just to tell someone your story, I think you would benefit from it."
As she wiped her tears away she said "Good for you Kim. I was so determined when I signed up here a few months ago and I was so determined to cancel. Good on you for changing my mind."  I walked over to her and gave her a big hug and said "everything is going to be okay.  You got this!"  We said our goodbyes and I just hope she left with a better insight. My heart just felt so heavy after she left the gym. I felt every single bit of that conversation.  

I hope that she will continue on her journey.
I hope our heart to heart made all the difference in the world.
I hope but we won't know what will happen. It's really up to Tammy what her next move is.
I just HOPE the move is in the right direction...FORWARD.


Wednesday, October 21, 2015

It's a Funny Thing...Those Extra Carbs

Whew!  The Khammy Photoshoot was a SUCCESS!! The girls who did it looked wonderful, even the first-timers!  Amazing job ladies!  Way to come out of those shells. Boudoir shoots will definitely bring out your inner diva.  I recommend EVERY GIRL do one in their lifetime. Thanks again to my good friend Khammy for hacking it out all day. You are a real superstar!

So, you probably wanna know how I am doing now? What things I ate afterwards...right?!?

Let's start off with post-shoot:

WATER!!  Omg, it's pretty incredible how much water is a big part of my life. Every second sentence out of my mouth while shooting was "I'm SO thirsty!!" Or "I want water!"  Instead of food, it was water that I was truly craving. I downed a bottle in 10 seconds flat post-shoot. It was the best thing in life at the time.  After we finished shooting the fitness segment of the day, we went to a buffet in town here, which surprisingly we didn't go too crazy. Ate a few ribs, mashed potatoes, salad, and a few desserts. Next stop, Tutti Frutti!  A cheat is definitely not complete without making a trip there. 

After Tutti Frutti, we stopped by the grocery store (which by the way was our last stop of the night). We grabbed some munchies to go alongside our movie choice of the night : "Inside Out".  Side Note:  I loved the movie and the message that went with it. 

Anyways, after vegging out with some nachos and popcorn, we ended up calling it a night. It was a super long, successful day and we were pooped by the time of 10:30pm. 

Morning came and I was awakened by clanging in the kitchen. Sam was already hard at work on our early morning breakfast. Because it was routine to me, I quickly got my best gym gear on and headed to the gym for some earlier morning fasted cardio. You'd think I would take a break from it all huh?!?  NOPE!    After a quick 20 minutes on the treadmill, I got home to a great smelling kitchen. Yum!  Breakfast is served. I woke up Khammy and we all had breakfast together. 

Doesn't it look yummy AND healthy!?  At this point, my body already felt a little fluffy for the night prior. Even if the stuff I ate wasn't the worst junk food in the world, it was still foreign food in my system and my body was like "hey, what are you doing?"  My fluffyness usually shows up on my mid-section, and my face. Yippee to chubby cheeks (*sarcasm).

We did some promo photography shots for 9Round, had a clean sandwich at Press'd and dropped Khammy off to the airport.  A little bit of carbs here and a little bit there.

Little did I know, Sam wanted to hop to the city to take me on one last cheat before the weekend was over. We went to Red Lobster, which I totally regret now. We ordered the Endless Shrimp special and already 1/4 way into our meal, I felt pretty tapped out.  I was loving the freedom of food again but I felt it was time for "regular nutrition" to start up. 

Cue Monday.  We brought back oats and broccoli into my meal plan...more clean carbs into my life.  But with that, my mind was toying with me saying "carbs equals gaining weight". Ugh, it's such a weird thing. I understand the process but when it happens on my own body...all of a sudden it makes absolutely no sense to me like frickin' calculus.  It's now Wednesday and in still trying to adjust. So with that, I am giving myself a week to refocus and hopefully *fingers crossed*, next week will be mentally stronger. Darn my mind and always being so hard on myself. Where's the switch to turn it off because I can't seem to find it. 

These are my current struggles and most likely it is someone's daily on-going battle. It all comes down to trusting the process that your coach (aka my husband) has set out and executing the plan. Fingers crossed* Hopefully you have an amazing coach like mine that puts up with all the craziness.

Sure, it makes me sad to see my abs go but from sadness comes happiness (just like the movie we watched *hopefully I didn't spoil it for anyone) :D

We will see what new gains happen for the 2016 year. 

Bring it on BODY!!!  You got this!!


Friday, October 16, 2015

Big Day Tomorrow

Well, on top of the countless things I have to do for the next couple of weeks, tomorrow is a big one. 

I annually do a photoshoot just to capture...well...ME!  Each year, I take an off-season to gain more muscle mass and lean out again to capture it.  The only difference this time is I am uneasy with perhaps putting my smexy shots out there in the social media-twittisphere-insta-universe.  Why you ask?  Well, I have a few reasons.

Reason 1: Due to an injury, I wasn't able to get as lean as I would normally like.  I didn't get a chance to do my sprints as I would normally do. I stayed away from doing heavy leg press and heavy squats in the cage due to the pain in my back. I definitely listened to my body and my chiropractor because I didn't want to chance it and hurt myself beyond repair. I was in despair but I had to make sacrifices. That's what life is about sometimes, isn't it?!
Reason 2: Will I even like what I see?!? Yes, even though I may look the way I do, I too have body issues. At the back of my mind is that younger, unhealthy and overweight Kim saying "you're not good enough". It comes and goes especially in times like these.  But, with doing a boudoir shoot, a woman is made to feel beautiful. So, I am going to try to embrace it and take it all in.
Reason 3: Not a hard-hitting reason but...who knows...the pictures may be WAY too sexy LOL. Therefore, only one other person besides myself and Khammy (my photographer) can see and that would be my husband Sam. Ever since I started my journey, I always kept it classy. So, I want to stay true to what my image has been and will always be.  There have been too many times on social media where I see young girls do whatever it takes for a tiny bit of fame.  "I want to be famous."  That's great but do it the right way and for what you love. Not for the attention. Do it to inspire people and not to make them feel sad, grossed out or feel bad about their own body image. My advice for them: Smarten up!  It is not only your life you are affecting, but the lives of your loved ones.  Classy and Never Trashy!

Well, I better get back to my prep for the shoot. I still have to find outfits to wear. Last-minute huh?!?  I know. 

Wish me luck. 


Monday, October 12, 2015

I Give Thanks: My Top 5

Well, we Canadians have Thanksgiving today. Happy Turkey Day my friends!!!  My boudoir photoshoot is in just 5 days. So, there is to be no turkey or all of the fixings this weekend. I'm going to be that lame person who has Thanksgiving after Thanksgiving. Ah well. I gotta stick with the goals I planned out for myself. Stick to the plan, Kim!

So with Thanksgiving upon us, here are the things I am thankful for:

1) My Health:  Ever since I started on my journey towards overall health and wellness, I'm just so grateful I am now truly on the right path. I used to brush off anything related to fitness or healthy eating. 

Common dialogue:
Friend: "Kim, want to go to the gym?"
Kim: "No thank you."

That was me. The girl who just kept gaining and gaining...not giving a crap at all about working out or eating healthy. I was the one waking up late at night in the house and sneaking junk food back to my bedroom to devour in minutes.  I was that girl who would make a trip to the store just for junk food and stash it in my secret hiding spot for a future binge.  Until one day, I decided I wasn't going to do this anymore. I needed to make a change. You have to understand that making the decision of extreme change is probably the hardest thing a person can do and is something a person has to do on their own. There is only so much a friend or family member can do.  I remember conversations with family members about them saying I've gained weight or I should lose weight or the best one of them all...I shouldn't be eating SO much of that. Hearing these things discouraged me more. It made me super depressed. *Cue vicious cycle of binge eating.  I realized a change this BIG had to satisfy me, myself and I. No one else.  I am thankful I realized how important my health was NOW, as opposed to waiting until it was either too late or I was way older than I am now.  

2) My Husband:  His name is Sam.  I like to see him as a man of many hats.  He is my best friend, love, coach, financial advisor, partner in life everything.  He was definitely a game changer compared to my past relationships.  

Let me tell you a little story about this man.  Sam came into my life out of the blue.  I was midway on my journey of a healthier version of me at 150-155lbs when we met through a mutual friend.  Went on one date and he already proclaimed to me that I was his.  I thought him to be strange.  How could he be so sure?!?  I mean, I was still trying to find myself.  He must of saw something I didn't see at the time.  I brushed it off at first until I really got to know him.  He taught me valuable things in regards to working out and cleaning eating that you could never read in a textbook.  Some of the stuff he says was/is so empowering.  He is a philosopher in my eyes and I am sure many of my friends who know him agree.  I really don't know how he comes up with some of the stuff he says but he always makes sense of it all.  He is especially hard on me out of all of his clients because like he says "Kim, I just want you to be the best".  He never babies me but is critical of situations and makes the best of the bad.  I hate him for that but of course love him after the fact.  With his help, I was able to reach my goal of losing body fat and getting down to my junior high weight of 135lbs.  He helped re-shape the way I looked at things and shaped my body in the process.

My parents on the other hand decided they didn't like Sam.  They thought he was just another guy.  It made me so upset they couldn't see how amazing he was to me.  With that, it made me withdrawn from them.  I would get criticized constantly.  I just had to leave.  I couldn't take it anymore.  I moved out temporarily to live with Sam.  In the days following, I received many forms of communication from them but I didn't want to face even more criticism.  I ignored their calls.  I didn't respond to text messages.  I even ignored messages from my siblings.  Sam knew it was eating away at me.  So, behind my back, he contacted them and said I was doing okay, I still loved them and were going to be attending my mother's birthday.  I still remember the day and the words my mom said at her birthday.  Mom: " We don't care what had happened in the past.  All we care about is you and having you in our lives."  After that, our relationship has never been stronger.  My parents gained respect for Sam that day and now love him to death.  For all that he is, I am so grateful.  

He also managed to help me with my finances.  I was the girl in college just walking down the halls and a rep from a credit card company calls you over.  BOOM!  That is how I got into trouble.  GRR!  My advice to young people is to just say no to credit cards.  I bought Chancel this and Dior that.  Little did I know, my debt keep adding and adding up.  It really stressed me out.  It would be in my everyday life.  I couldn't get away.  It was only until I opened up to Sam about this dreadful problem. He helped me budget better.  Sam would say stuff like: "What do you need to pay for this month?" or "Will you have enough with the hours you are working to pay of the things you need/want?"  Statements like these are common in our household.  Now, I do not own any credit cards and am debt free (besides the credit cards Sam owns).

He still surprises me with special recipes and romantic gestures.  He makes me laugh even though it wasn't his intention.  He loves me for all that I am.  He gets so thrilled when something exciting happens to me.  I'd definitely be lost without him.  Love you babe!!!

3) My Family:  I know I haven't been the most angelic child growing up.  I was the one who would always make a stand.  I was the one who would fight back.  I was the one who would make my voice heard.  I was also that naughty kid who would stay out WAY past curfew, sneak out of the house, and NEVER check in with my parents.  I had the "I DO WHAT I WANT" mentality.  I was a brat!!!

Luckily for me, my parents had what most have for their children, which is unconditional love.  Going back to the story of how I got reconnected with my parents, it was a life changer.  Our bond is the strongest it has ever been.  Lots of "I Love You's" and "I Miss You's" every time we call back home.  I miss them dearly but sorry folks, I don't think Sam and I will be coming back home to live anytime soon. move back home if we had kids.  And no, we aren't trying yet if that was your next question.

4) My Friends:  You guys are the backbone of my existence.  All those times I would cry on your shoulder about some douche(s) dumping me for some lame reason, you were there.  All the times I would get advice on this or that, you were there.  All those hours of repeating the same rant OVER and OVER again, you listened anyways (no matter how redundant it was) because you cared.  You were there.  I have countless stories of friends who were there for me when I needed them the most.  This blog could go on and on but just know that I love you and appreciate all of you that are still in my life.  I feel like there should be a friend oath like they do at wedding ceremonies.  "For better or for worse.  For richer or for poorer.  In sickness and in health.  Until death do us part."  And then just pinky swear at the end of it all.  Anyways, I just have to say that I am one lucky girl to have you.  You know who you are.      

5) My Career:  It all started when Sam got word he was going to be laid off from his Winnipeg job.  Luckily, he knew someone who lived out in Alberta who was able to get him a high-paying gig.  Sam left within a week to start his new career in the Oil & Gas industry in October and left me behind until he came back to get me at Christmas time.  After our big family dinner, we left to our new home in Leduc, Alberta.  At this point, I didn't know what I wanted to do with my life.  I was SO happy in Winnipeg when I was personal training and wanted something that would give me the same joy.  After weeks and weeks of searching, I finally came across something along the lines of what I had done in the past for a front desk position at the new Snap Fitness opening in town.  Quickly set up and interview and met Mike (the owner) at the nearest coffee shop.  Super casual interview.  I answered all his questions perfectly and at the end of it he hired me.  I was on top of the world.  I told him it was my lucky day because it coincidently was my birthday.  Happy Birthday to Kim!  I found out on my first day, they hired two of us.  Because our learning styles were quite different, I was able to surpass her immensely.  Within just 2 1/2 months of working at Snap, they promoted me to Assistant Manager.  I just couldn't believe it.  A few more months (my 7th month employed) and they promoted me to Manager.  I have never been more happy with my life regarding my career and finally I knew the reason why people used the statement "Passion is the difference between having a job or having a career."  I live with passion each and every day I step through those doors.  I love what I do and love the fact I can help others achieve their goals.  After all, I have been there.  I understand you.

Because of the passion and determination Sam and I have, we were given an amazing opportunity to be a part of something new and exciting to Canada.  9Round 30 minute kickboxing was presented to us late last year.  We didn't know much about the company but thought it would work very well in Leduc.  May 2015 is when we opened out doors and now, the doors won't stay shut.  We are doing so well that we are #1 in all of Canada!!!  9Round is my husbands' baby but I am so proud of where he has taken the business.

That's why this Thanksgiving, I am especially thankful.  I am blessed with all the amazing people and opportunities that have come my way.  I said it before and I'll say it again.  I am one lucky girl.  Thanks for reading.    

Question: What are you thankful for today?


Saturday, October 10, 2015

Bye Bye Vegas and Hello Goals!!!

Well, I'm sure you are wanting to know how I did this week...ya know...with staying on track and all.  Let me tell you, it wasn't easy. 

With countless food options on the Las Vegas Strip, my head was definitely spinning. Just the smell of it made my mouth salivate and my stomach growl.  I would pass by a place and go "ooh" or "yum" or "CUPCAKES" and then be sad walking away LOL. It was bloody awful BUT we set the day of our cheat (Thursday) and promised to stick to it no matter what.  Side Note: Gordan Ramsey Steak Restaurant reservations were cancelled by us because we just wanted more options for the same price, which in my mind at the time made sense...just a little sad now that we didn't go but I guess there is always next time.  

Our go-to places for clean eats were of two: Chipotle and the Food Hall in Harrahs Hotel. 

From Chipotle, I ordered a chicken salad bowl...hold the rice, beans, salsa, guacamole. So basically, it was lettuce and their yummy seasoned chicken. We frequented there a few times and each time I got the look of "oh, that poor girl", which I thought to be really funny. I mean HEY, at least the chicken wasn't plain.  I loved it!  Chipotle, you rock!  

At the Food Hall, we ordered salads.  I was so in awe of this place. Sushi, noodles, pastries, pizza, froyo, sandwiches, soups and more.  It was all in one place, which I guess didn't matter to me on the days I wasn't cheating but at least I knew I had options when the time came. Our salad artist was named Mark. We had him on two occasions and was just wowed with his customer service.  He was definitely one of the highlights of the trip.   Super friendly, very generous with the items I wanted in my salad and that's why we gave him a very nice tip.  Thanks Mark! *muah. I opted for making my own salad with the spring mix greens, which you had 6 items out of the many vegetable items to pick from. I got purple onions, chopped eggs, grilled asparagus, pickled artichoke, cucumber, and black olives. Of course, I needed to get my protein chicken was my choice. I loved how I was SO in control of what went into my body.  It was just a refreshing change from say Subway salad ingredients. Like cmon, artichoke...who ever has that?!?  To finish it off, I went sans salad dressing BUT then added a bit of vinegar and pepper/salt for more taste.  I even opened a packet or two of mustard to dip my chicken in. Sam doesn't understand my love for mustard. He just looks at me like "why?!" Whatever, it's my food and my body.

When Thursday rolled around, I was one happy girl. Cue the Ke$ha track 'Tick Tock'.  I was definitely waking up in the morning feeling like P.Diddy :)
Anyways, went to my conference meetings, worked out as per usual and we strutted into the nearest buffet. I usually end of feeling like garbage but this time around we were smart about it. If something doesn't taste amazing, we don't finish it. Just one bite will tell the story. It's just like having things all within a moderate amount. That's how Sam and I tackled our allocated cheat day. After the buffet, we walked for probably a good hour and a half and then stopped for a lobster roll at Lobster Me. YUM!  It was delicious!  I've never had one in my life and  boy, it was tasty. After another slot of walking...maybe this time for another hour, we found another buffet. This was our last stop of the night because we were nearing our 4 hour time limitation for our cheat. Again, having a tad bit of everything but not going overboard.  It was definitely a good day. 

So, what's the moral of the story? Don't think to yourself that it is impossible to stay on track with clean eating while away on vacation.  Don't give in!  You got this!Trust when I say, I had my moments of vulnerability but Sam quickly pulled me back from the food trance and got me refocused on my goals. Always ask yourself these things:  
1. Is it really worth it?
3. How will I feel after?
5. Will I regret the decision I just made?
6. Will it get me closer to my goals?

If you answer with hesitation, chances are you shouldn't do it. Yup, I know it's easy to say but harder to do but just know that you are not alone (*points to myself). I've gone through it countless times.  If you really don't know what to do, call a supportive friend. They will be the voice of reason. That little push will get you over the junk food hump and off on that goal digger path of yours. 

Hope this blog post helps you guys with your future plans for travel. I will leave you with this mantra to repeat again, again and again: 



Tuesday, October 6, 2015

It's Been A Long Time...Since I Wrote For You

Hey Friends!  Long time, no see huh?!!  I always seems to go away for a long time and then randomly make a new blog post. 

Let me keep you posted on what has happened in the last little bit. Let's get you all up-to-date!!!

My husband and I are proud owners of 9Round 30 Min Kickboxing here in Leduc, Alberta. It's going SO WELL that even for being open since only May of this year, we are currently sitting at the #1 spot in all of Canada!!  Woot woot!  How exciting is that?!!  If you guys don't know much about it, let me give you a quick run down:
-Workouts are ONLY 30 minutes
-You have a personal trainer with you every step of the way
-You can be at any level of fitness with the trainers modifying (if need be) 
-Workouts change DAILY
-No set class times, jump in anytime

I can attest that 9Round is one kick-ass workout. I sweat like a mother whenever I get a chance to do it. On the days I don't feel like giving it my 100%, the trainers always give me that push to work harder!  It's a love/hate relationship. But more so love....after I am done working out with them of course. It's definitely something that everyone needs to try before one assumes what it "may" be like. You definitely will be surprised in a good way. 

Next, Sam and I are currently on our way to Las Vegas for the Annual Snap Fitness Convention. My owners are THE BEST....seriously. Hotel, airfare and paid salary all taken care of?!? Um YA!  I am even nominated for Manager Of The Year. If I win, I get a super cool trophy and bragging rights.  My owner Mike said they even even hold a Hot Body contest at our Snap pool party. He said hands down that Sam and I would win.  Haha we shall see about that.

In two weeks, I am going to be doing my second boudoir photoshoot with my talented friend Khammy once again. So, while we are here in Las Vegas, Kimmy has got to be a really good girl. No fun 😢. Vegas is well-known for all the glorious buffets, top chefs and scrumptious nibbles. 

Staying on track will be an ultimate test with the goals I have set out for myself.  I'm sure you all have gone through a similar experience in the past or maybe have something coming up. 
With that, here are Kimmy's Tips:

1. Meal Prep: Pack your protein and GO!  We usually make sure we have extra protein bars in our bags where we go. Getting samples of protein powder for your local supplement store and bringing along a shaker cup is also a really good idea.
2. Modify Your Meals: You can always find a way to get the correct nutrients in our system without going overboard. Ask your waiter for lighter options, dressing on the side, or even asking them if they can just make you a Plain Jane oven-roasted chicken breast instead of the one on the menu covered in sauce.
3. Find the Nearest Grocery Store: This one may or may not be an easy task. It truly depends on where you are staying. For us here in Las Vegas, grocery stores are not too common of a sight to see near the strip. So, unfortunately for us, we may need to taxi to a store and meal prep later at our hotel. Nonetheless, meal prepping your own meals is WAY more cost effective than buffets each night...even with the added taxi fare AND not so costly on our waistline.
4. Water, Agua, H20: Don't skimp out on this one. A majority of the time you feel hungry has said to mean you are just thirsty. So, wet that whistle whenever you get a chance. Side note: bring a bottle of water or your own bottle wherever you go. You can always find a water fountain and fill 'er up!
5. Time It: Just like eating too much, you want to make sure you are still eating enough. My tip: place an alarm on your phone for every 2 - 1/2 to 3 hours. I def know what it is like to lose track of time but we NEVER want to lose sight of our goals. Stick to the plan and EXECUTE THAT!
6. Moderation...Moderation...Moderation: Vacation is a time to relax but you should be able to indulge as well. Like us, we have one day out of our week here to go at it!  We picked a restaurant that has both clean and not-so-clean eats at Gordon Ramsey Steak in The Paris Hotel. I am opting for the Beef Wellington because I know it's not too far off from what I eat on a regular BUT created by a top chef....which I am not. I always end of burning my food 😉.  Having dessert is something I want to do as well.  Yum, the creme brûlée is calling my name. Instead of a cheat DAY (which is so damaging on the body), we are doing a cheat meal. What that means to me is eating foods I wouldn't normally eat within a 4 hour window. After that, too sad. 
7. Busy Getting Busy:  Doing fun activities will most definitely take your mind off food. Go outside, play in the water, climb a some epic s**t!!!  Move that body!!!
8. To Have and To Hold:  Let the person who you are with while on vacation know/understand what your goals are. If they tempt you from straying, politely tell them that by peer pressuring, they are disrespecting you and your goals. Don't give in. You are almost there.

Apply these tips and you'll be well on your way to that healthy and happy body you deserve. 

Well, we are descending to Las Vegas.  I'll keep you guys posted (hopefully) how well I do with my goals while away. 

Good luck with your goals and a big good luck to me (*fingers crossed). 

Have an amazing day everyone.