Success Story: “I lost 45 pounds and 16 percent bodyfat!”
Find out how first time NPC bikini competitor Nancy transformed her body with the help of IFBB bikini pro and Bodybuilding.com Athlete Nicole Moneer
Being a Registered Dietitian consulting for food and nutrition companies, my life literally revolved around food. I’m constantly in the kitchen testing and developing recipes and eating at restaurants trying different foods to get new ideas and experimenting. Even though I knew about health and nutrition, I didn’t always apply what I knew. I had an unhealthy relationship with food going from one extreme to another, starving and binging. I used to work out just so I could eat whatever I wanted.
Eventually, I would get too busy or get tired of working out, and eating to my heart’s content would catch up with me. I’d gain weight and be unhappy about how I looked and work out like crazy (sometimes as much as 2-3 hours a day) to lose the weight. Every 2-3 years, my weight would fluctuate from 105 to 135 pounds. After having two children, injuring my knee, and suffering from severe migraines, the years of yo-yo dieting finally caught up with me. I reached my heaviest weight at 160 pounds. I’ve always been very active but lost interest in doing things that I enjoyed after gaining so much weight. I had my blood work done and my fasting- glucose, triglyceride, and cholesterol levels as well as my blood pressure, were all elevated. I had a hard time walking up the stairs without shortness of breath and didn’t have the energy to play with my kids. This was a huge wake-up call for me. My doctor said I needed to start taking medications to keep my levels normal, but I knew I didn’t want to start taking them at such a young age and had to do something about it.
I joined Lifetime Fitness and signed up for their 90-Day Fitness Challenge to help motivate myself to lose weight. I did 2-3 hours of cardio to lose weight but after working out with Nicole, I’ve learned to work out smarter. Since I work full time and have kids, I didn’t have a lot of time to spend at the gym. Rather than doing hours of cardio, I started to incorporate weight training, working out about an hour a day, and ate clean. I tried to squeeze in a workout whenever I could. While preparing dinner, I would do push-ups against the counter top and do body weight squats. When I’d go to my kid’s soccer practice, instead of sitting on the bench, I would work out on the sidelines. At night after putting my kids to bed, I would work on my abs, doing planks, sit-ups and reverse crunches.
I also completely changed the way I ate. I eliminated all processed/artificial food from my diet, ate small frequent meals, ate more whole grains, clean carbs, and 8-10 servings of non-starchy vegetables a day. I worked out six days a week, ate clean and won the challenge. I still had few more pounds to lose though, so I signed up for the 90-Day Fitness Challenge again and won. I had lost a total of 42 pounds in 24 weeks.
While working out at Lifetime Fitness, I saw a poster board of IFBB Bikini Pro and Bodybuilding.com sponsored athlete Nicole Moneer. It was a picture of her and her clients who train and compete in the NPC bikini division. I was surprised by how old she was and how great she looked, for 40 she looked 20 something. We were similar in age and she looked amazing! She has been one of my fitness inspirations. I’ve dreamed of competing but never thought I would get myself in that great of shape. I’ve decided that my next goal would be to train to compete.
I signed up for Lifetime’s transformation challenge to help motivate myself, and began training with Nicole January of 2013. She helped me sculpt my body with training and coached me in posing and every aspect of competing, including suit selection, hair, make-up, and tan etc. She came up with a meal plan for me to follow and kept tweaking every couple of weeks until the day of the competition. She kept me motivated and inspired me during my transformation journey especially during the times I began doubting myself and wondered what I got myself into.
During our first session, I had mentioned to Nicole that I was unhappy about how my abs looked and thought about getting laser treatment/surgery to flatten and smooth out my abs. She advised against it and told me that working out and changing my diet will take care of it. Sure enough, after working hard for 10 weeks she was right! After having two children, I was able to have flat abs and got into the best shape of my life. I’ve learned to workout smarter and not spend hours in the gym. I now have a healthy relationship with food and practice what I preach. I fell in love with fitness and got my certification as a personal trainer through NASM in March of 2013. Nicole introduced me to other clients on her team, Lifestyle360 Powered By Bodybuilding.com, who were also prepping to compete, they soon became my training buddies and we kept each other motivated.
This past March, I competed in my first show. Even though I did not place in the top, I was very proud of how far I’ve come in such a short period of time and inspiring people. My transformation picture was posted all over the gym and numerous people came up to me to let me know that they were inspired by me. It was nice to see people making healthy lifestyle changes because they felt inspired by my transformation. I’ve lost total of 45 pounds and 16 percent body fat, fell in love with fitness, became a personal trainer and accomplished something I’ve always dreamed of doing. I’m more fit now than I was in my 20’s and, more importantly, my blood work labs are now normal so I don’t need medication!
Five weeks after my first show, I competed again at the Illinois State and placed second in my class and qualified for nationals. I will be competing in Jr. Nationals in Chicago this June and Masters Nationals in July. I hope to inspire other women and show them that it doesn’t matter how old you are, you can accomplish whatever you put your mind to. You have to first believe you can and think about the steps you need to take to get you there. It’s important to make your health a priority and set a good example for your family. During my transformation journey, my husband has also lost 30 pounds with eating clean and weight training.
Not only was this a physical transformation, but a mental one as well. I’ve become more positive, optimistic, confident and a happier person.