A Message from Owner of Inner Fit, Rachel Seay…
When I think of Kristina, I instantly have a smile on my face because she brings so much joy to my life as a member and a friend. I love her attitude to try everything once, no matter how hard it appears to be, she still does it (but yes we have had some kicking and screaming moments lol). She is open, funny as hell, and an incredible mother.
Watching Kristina’s journey has been close to my heart because I have seen a woman transform right before my eyes in more ways than just the weight coming off. Kristina never once gave up and there are many times she could of, but she kept going. She tried every adventure we hosted, not matter what we do – she was game. That kind of attitude is contagious because it has helped her reach such an incredible success. I am honoured to have you at the studio and watch your journey!
Read about Kristina’s Journey – It is worth the read…
How much weight have you lost as of today? LOTS!! Saving the exact number for when I reach goal. For now only a chosen few get to know.
Why did you decide you needed to make a change in your life?
It wasn’t exactly like deciding I needed to make a change. It was more complicated than that. I spent a year at Inner Fit trying to figure things with myself out. I actually know the exact date something in my brain clicked, and from that day forward I’ve been on the path towards my goal. All whole lot of things aligned for me. I actually love the challenge, and for the first time in my life I have come to realize I am worth it. I made my mind that I am worth spending time to better myself, and I’ve allowed myself to trust full heartedly those who are helping me along the way.
How do you feel today compared to how you felt at the start of your weight loss journey?
No comparison. I’m a different person than the one who entered those doors nearly 2 years ago. I have confidence to try new things, I am more social, and this one is huge. For the first time in my adult life I am actually down to my core happy.. Not every day is perfect, but I am grateful for my life, and know I can deal with the curve balls that life throws.
How long have you been a member at Inner Fit?
2 years this July!
What role did Inner Fit play in your weight loss journey?
Inner Fit has been a huge component of my weight loss journey. Without this community without a doubt I would be diabetic, deeply depressed, and I don’t even want to think about where my weight would be.
Inner Fit has given me a community of people who encourage me, who cheer for me, and a safe environment in which to transform without judgment and criticism.
What do you love about the classes at Inner Fit?
I love the people. The classes are always filled with laughs and good times. We are all on the same page.
I love that even after the worst day, when all I want to do is go home and eat ice cream, I can 100% guarantee I’ll be laughing and happy after my workout.
I love that the coaches know me well enough to know when to push, and when to back off.
What would you say to women who are afraid to lift weights?
Weights are honestly not my favorite. But they shouldn’t be feared. I fear loose, saggy skin and surgery far more than I do lifting weights for 1/2 hour a couple times a week.
What changes did you make to your nutrition habits to help you lose the weight?
My diet needed a complete 100% overhaul.
To begin I started to track every bite. I mean every single thing I put in my mouth I journal. I also weigh and measure my food. Even now, after 8 months of serious weight loss, I measure nearly everything. I’m not very good at estimating, so my food scale and measuring cups get a lot of use in my household.
I eat my meals on small side plates, and I very rarely go back for seconds.
I eat mostly homemade meals, and spend time on Sunday’s prepping my breakfasts and lunches for the week ahead.
On my fridge Sunday’s I put a meal plan for that weeks dinners, and try to the best of my ability to stick to the plans.
I eat loads of salad, and if I snack it’s usually a piece of fruit or rice cakes.
I never eat past 8:00pm.
When I go out for the most part I have a salad, get the kitchen to pack 1/2 up before it even comes out on the plate, and get the dressing on the side.
I don’t beat myself up when I cave in to a craving. I enjoy the taste of treats now, and can appreciate a treat for being just that. I still eat the things I love, I just don’t consume them on a daily basis. I plan ahead, and allow myself to enjoy the occasional ice cream or chicken and fries without guilt!
What helped you stay focused when you wanted to give up on your journey?
I’ve never really wanted to give up. I keep my focus board beside my bed, and that helps give me motivation most mornings. I also have a big bag of clothing in my closet that no longer fits me. I find looking at my shrinking closet one of my best motivators when I get overwhelmed with the numbers on the scale.
What does your support system look like? What role have they played in your success?
My support system is incredible! I would say it’s an eclectic little group who have been a huge part of my success so far. It’s weird to actually think about what my support system looks like, because literally each and every person who has ever given me even a little encouragement or advice has played a role in my success.
I’m fortunate enough to have joined Inner Fit with my best friend. We have a load of fun in classes together, and she is just someone who I can say and do anything with and around and because we’ve known each other more years than I will mention, she’s always got my back.
My girls are my biggest cheerleaders, and some of my favorite times are when my eldest joins me on a run or in a class. They have never once asked me to miss a workout. They tell me they are proud of me, and love that I am so happy. Pretty amazing for 2 teenage girls!
One person who has been paramount to me is my coach Tania. She would never ever take credit, but she serves as a constant pain in my butt, and was responsible for the switch that finally went off in my head. She challenges me, can make me cry from laughter, or agony, and I can be 100% open and honest with my thoughts, opinions (which are many), and with all life’s challenges. We solve the world’s problems together! But she just gets it, and our friendship and support for each other is just easy.
Another person who pushes me to get outside my comfort zone and doesn’t take my crap is the owner of Inner Fit, Rachel. She has pushed me up the side of a damned mountain and wouldn’t let the helicopter save me “thank you very much”. She has been with me since the beginning, and since the first day I just knew we’d be friends forever. Her gentle encouragement is like a safety net for me.
Of course my 6:30 Monday – and Friday and 6 am crew are just the best! And fellow member and hopefully future coach Jody is such a motivator, and so kind with her hand me downs and constant kindhearted words and gestures. She has gotten me through many a class by pushing me go a little bit harder and a little bit longer.
I have a couple friends also on Weight Watchers and it’s been so awesome to have a group of 3 on Facebook where we share daily our triumphs, our screw ups and laughs. It’s so important to surround yourself with like minded people!!
What 3 pieces of advice do you have for someone who is wanting to lose weight but struggling?
1. Start small. Don’t begin on a Monday with a do or die, all or nothing attitude. You’ll be lucky to get past the first day. Set yourself 1 small goal, and stick with it. Be it, today I will drink 8 glasses of water. Or this week I will attend both my essential classes. Make the goal something tangible, share the goal with someone, and be proud of yourself when you achieve it!
2. Be realistic. By being real about your weight loss goals you will be less likely to get overwhelmed by the bigger picture. Break your weight loss into small segments, such as 5 or 10 pounds at a time. Don’t set unrealistic weight loss goals, this journey is not a sprint, it’s a marathon. Take the time to enjoy it!
3. Allow people in. Tell one or two people your goals, even share your starting weight with someone who will hold you accountable to a weekly weigh in. Yes, sharing that scale number is scary as heck, but it’s just a number. It’s a tool to help you on your journey. It doesn’t define who you are.
Did you set out to reach a certain goal or did you set mini goals along the way?
I’m all about mini goals! I get overwhelmed quite easily, and have an anxious by nature personality, so looking at the big picture doesn’t work for me.
What goals did you reach that filled your heart with joy and pride?
-I’m now able to walk into most clothing stores and be comfortable knowing I’ll fit into the clothing.
-Running my first 5k in December was pretty amazing considering it wasn’t that long ago that I couldn’t even run from my car to my front door without getting winded. And I did it 3 weeks after surgery!!
-I trained and participated in Mudderella this last September. Nothing I would ever do again, but the training and the idea of conquering the challenge was fun.
-Most of all I’m proud of myself for sticking to it. Even on bad days, I’ve embraced my new life style.
What struggles do you still face on a daily basis?
Some days I just don’t want to work out. I mean, I really don’t want to work out! Those are the days I need it the most.
Also ice cream. It’s never far from my mind. I could eat ice cream every day, breakfast, lunch and dinner…
I also struggle with my own image of myself. People telling me I look good and that I’ve lost so much weight makes me uncomfortable. There are days I just don’t see it on myself. Yes my clothing is too big, and yes I’m able to do a lot more than I could 2 years ago, but the mind is a funny thing. It’s hard to see the changes fully on oneself.
Describe a week of fitness:
I’m active, every day, although some days more so than others. I’ll outline my standard week of fitness, but please know that some classes are more “chit chat time and social hour” than they are hardcore working out.
-Monday, essential class – or run on my own or both
-Tuesday, essential and hurricane
-Wednesday, essential class, or run on my own, or both
-Thursday, step class and lift class
-Friday, spin, lift and kickboxing
-Saturday, hurricane and restore
-Sunday, spin, HIIT and core/restore
Describe a day of nutrition:
My daily diet isn’t exciting. I am the type of person Monday – Friday I can literally eat, and usually do eat, the same thing every day for breakfast and lunch.
Breakfast is generally refrigerator oatmeal with fruit, and water and coffee. Either that or an egg and fruit.
Lunch is always a salad with some sort of protein. Usually romaine lettuce because I love it, and any or all veggies I have in the fridge.
Dinner is a protein of some sort and veg, and usually another salad.
Snacks are fruit, maybe some granola, yogurt, green juice, popcorn, rice crackers, and cheese.
My attitude towards food has changed. For the most part I just don’t have the cravings for the junk food and sweets I used to crave and eat all the time. I like the way I feel when I eat whole foods and a clean diet.
What fitness programs and diets had you tried in the past?
I’ve honestly not tried a whole lot of diet plans. I’ve always been fairly loyal to WW and have always achieved my goals with the program.
I was for the beginning of my journey tracking on my own with MyFitnessPal, but I got lazy about measuring so I knew it was time to try something new.
I’ve never ever been a fan of fitness! I’ve never enjoyed working out, and have never stuck to any formal workout plan for longer than a month or two.
One exception is step class. No matter which gym I belonged to at that moment I always went to step class!!
What didn’t work for you and why?
Traditional gyms never worked for me. There was no sense of community. No sense of being anything but a number. I’m truly not motivated enough to do it on my own, so I literally need this community behind me giving me the extra push and attention to make sure I’m on track.
How has your energy changed since you started your fitness journey?
Ten fold! My energy levels are unparalleled to where they used to be. I also sleep so much better at night.
What part has the fitness classes played in your weight loss journey?
Fitness has played a big part in my weight loss journey. It’s part of the bigger picture. For me, I’ve come to the realization that I can’t out exercise a bad diet. My equation is simple, eat more than I should, no matter how hard I hit it at the gym, I’m going to gain weight that week. But fitness makes me feel good. I’ve never left a class thinking, wow, I wish I had stayed home instead of going. I like the feeling of getting my heart racing, I love looking at my Fit bit after class to see how long I reached peak. It’s addicting for sure.
Was there a game changer moment for you?
There sure was! I’ll share once I’m at goal!
What AH-HA moments have you had on your journey?
I’ve realized I have to surround myself with people who understand my desire to changes and support me as I make those changes.
Not everyone is supportive, and there are people who are waiting for me to crash and burn, I’ve learned just to tune them out and focus on the positive.
Organization is key!
I’m actually worth it, and am allowed to be happy and content with my life.
How has your confidence changed?
I’m confident enough to try new adventures, at least once. There was a time not long ago where just leaving the house was all the adventure I wanted. Now I love impromptu evenings out with friends or new fitness adventures!
What have you learned about yourself?
I’ve learned that I can follow through with a plan. I’ve started and stopped diets and fitness more times than I can count. This time has been different. I can count on myself to follow through with my set plans, and have learned to trust myself.
I’ve also learned I can be relied and counted on. This is big for me. Previously I was so unhappy I would bail on plans constantly. Now if I make plans for myself, or with friends, I won’t cancel unless a true emergency comes up.
Have you participated in any of the Inner Fit Adventures? Did any of them have special meaning to you?
I think I’ve participated in nearly every adventure inner fit has offered since I started. I’ve climbed the grouse grind twice, did Mudderella in whistler, tried paddle boarding, went kayaking and snowshoeing, ran in the Santa Shuffle 5k, and hiked quarry rock. Some of these were more enjoyable than others, but each will forever hold a special spot in my memory for the experience and unique challenges they presented.
What fears did you conquer?
Too many to list! But a big one is I’ve learned to trust again. Trust has really been one of the biggest parts of my puzzle. I now trust myself and I trust those I’ve gathered around me.
Have you reached your big goal?
Nope, not yet!
What goals do you have for the future?
For now I’m focusing on my goal weight.
I’m thinking of another goal to keep me focused for the summer. I’ve set myself goals to work towards, something that scares me throughout my journey, and this has served me well.
What are you doing to keep the weight off?
I’m staying on plan and keeping up with my fitness while I’m losing weight. When I plateau a few months ago I shook things up. I’m literally just taking it one day at a time and one meal at a time.
Any favorite quotes that you have discovered along the way that inspired you?
I love to read, but one of my favorites is actually from Alice in Wonderland,
Alice: “This is impossible”
The Mad Hatter: “Only if you believe it is”.
Has there been a ripple effect with the people in your life seeing your transformation?
For the most part everyone is super encouraging and supportive. I’ve had some people want to join me, and a lot of interest in what I’m doing. I’m super excited to eventually share my story and hopefully inspire others on a journey of their own
Photo Credit @jeremysaunders Jeremy Saunders