Tell us a bit about yourself and your career.
I’m 38 years old and I’ve been a nail tech for 15 years, salon owner for six years, and an Akzentz Certified Educator (A.C.E) for almost a year. I currently work at Evolution Salon in Leduc, Alberta, Canada.
What are your health challenges?
For many years I’ve struggled with weight. It was summer 2015 when I decided it was time for a lifestyle change. I wanted to get healthy and feel good about myself, so I signed up for a gym membership at Snap Fitness in Leduc, and started working out five days a week and changed my eating habits. As I started to see results, it motivated me even more. I then started to make a goal for myself each month. My heaviest weight was 186 lbs., so my first goal was to reach 175 lbs. When that goal was reached I made another goal to reach 165 lbs. In spring of 2016, Snap Fitness Leduc organized a fitness photo shoot for members. At that point, I was 160 lbs. The photo shoot was my next goal; I wanted to be in the best shape ever. I’ve never been more motivated in my life! I was so proud of how the photo shoot turned out, and that time I was 150 lbs. I finally reached my goal weight of 140 lbs. in July 2016.
What was/is your plan of action?
Before my transformation, I tried many different diets. The diet that worked for me and kick-started my journey was The Badass Body Diet by Christmas Abbott. With the help of my Fitbit, I was set. During my weight loss journey, I’ve been keeping myself very active with kickboxing and 5k runs in addition to going to the gym. I worked with a trainer for my photo shoot, and my diet was very strict at that time. I had little to no carbs and sugars during prep for the shoot, I learned to measure meals and control portions, and I had one cheat meal a week.
What has been your greatest challenge or most difficult aspect of your new healthy lifestyle?
As a nail tech for 15 years, I never really had a set time for lunch or dinner, and often, I would be so busy that I would forget to eat. This routine was unhealthy and not sustainable in the long run. Your body is a machine that needs to be given fuel regularly to function properly. With this eating pattern, my body was running on an empty stomach all day, which affected my energy. I didn’t have the energy to exercise or simply get through my day as productively as I could. Additionally, a large meal late at night would disturb my sleep, limiting my rest and further reducing my energy levels. I’ve now learned to spread my meals throughout the day and set alarms on my phone to remind me to eat at certain times. I eat three full meals, three snacks in between my meals, and I drink at least 3-4L of water a day.
What are your next goals?
I would like to compete in a bodybuilding competition one day. Each time I work out, I push my limits and challenge myself to become stronger. I want to see what my body is capable of, and I want to be a better version of me. I’m excited because 2017 will be a great start for a new and improved me!
What are your best fitness tips and advice for other nail techs who need encouragement to embark on a healthy lifestyle?
Begin with making small and realistic goals; you’ll achieve them faster, and the more you achieve, the more motivated you become. When you start seeing results you’ll be addicted. Slow progress is better than no progress. Consistency and hard work is the key. Never give up!
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