My Fitness Journey
I've been working from home as a full-time blogger for almost three years now. I've never worked from home before and I also happen to be a first-generation entrepreneur so lets just say the struggle was real especially the first two years. One of the things that took it's toll on me the most was my health. I gained a little over 30 pounds and I was shocked. I can't act like it was a surprise either because my clothes was a huge signal that I let myself go. Also, my energy levels were at an all time low.
My routine consisted of going to bed anytime from 3-6AM working and waking up at noon to do it all over again. I skipped meals and when I did eat it was always the unhealthiest options. I was a mess and it was starting to show physically. At the beginning of this year, I decided that I had had enough so at last minute I signed up for a 28-day fitness challenge call Slay For Life to kickstart my fitness journey and lifestyle change. Classes were held at the Athleta store in Soho at 7:30am which meant waking up at 5:30am so that I could leave my house in time. It sounded crazy at first, but I know myself. I'm either all in or all out. I knew doing something this extreme was going to thrust me into the new lifestyle I desperately needed.
The first day was a struggle since I only got 3 hours of sleep, but little by little my body started to get tired around 8-10pm which forced me to go to bed sooner. I aimed to be in bed by 11pm the absolute latest so that I could get at least 6 hours of sleep. Creating boundaries like shutting my laptop down by 7pm really helped. That was always a huge issue for me because I never knew how to walk away from work, but I had to learn that to-do list are not always meant to be done in a day. Also, setting up my alarm on my Amazon Echo Dot (Alexa) in the living room and putting my phone to charge there as well was a game changer. No more Instagram to keep me distracted till the wee hours in bed. I changed the alarm sound to the celebrity alarm clock setting and woke up daily to Missy Elliot blasting throughout my apartment.
"WAKEUP!! Yo, time to start the day. You know the first step to becoming a superstar is rolling out the bed"
The first two weeks weren't as dreadful as I expected. I loved being able to check-in with you all on a daily through Instagram stories on my way to my morning workout. It definitely kept me accountable. It also helped that my trainer Robert and his amazing team slowly worked us into the workouts by building up the intensity over time. Week three was rough. I did not wan't to get out of bed. It was cold outside, and my body ached in places I didn't even know it could ache before. I was struggling, but I pushed through and made it.
The last week felt surreal! I couldn't believe I made it this far, but I have to say that the amazing group of women I had the pleasure of working out with during the challenge really made it all worth it. They were so encouraging and supportive during all of our workouts. I loved the community we created and I could not think of a better way to jumpstart my fitness journey. Our last day was bittersweet as we celebrated each others gains (hey abs!) and losses (bye fat), but nothing could have prepared me for the joy I felt when I stepped on the scaled and realized that I had lost 12 pounds!!!!!!
Losing the weight made me feel confident and alive, but knowing that I stuck by the commitment I made made be feel powerful. To celebrate, Athleta Soho treated everyone who showed up to all of the classes with a free workout outfit and you already know I've been stunnin' on the gram with mine. I loveeeeee their workout clothes. It's super comfortable, cute, and curvy girl friendly (sizes range from XS-XL) and makes me really excited to work out.
The 28-Day slay for life challenge was just what I needed to get started, but the real test was what I was going to do after. Did you know that it takes at least 60-days to make a habit? Yea, me either. I love the routine I've created and the extra amount of natural energy I now have. My skin is flourishing and my waist is getting snatched. I know I have to keep this momentum going in order for it to stick so I decided to sign up for unlimited classes at a local studio in the Bronx. I've been attending Sweet Water Dance & Yoga for a week now and I feel right at home. It's been a great way to add variety to my fitness journey. Everyone there is super friendly and the owner. Yosara is a sweetheart. She's Latina and her entrepreneur journey to create the studio is truly incredible.
This journey definitely hasn't been easy. Working out is half the battle. Eating is truly the struggle, but I'm so committed! My fridge has never look greener. I invested in a Breville juicer and whatever vegetables I don't eat, I juice. This is a true journey to a better lifestyle. It's not temporary by any means and I have every intention to keep it that way. Besides the physical changes, I can't even begin to describe what this has done to my soul. I feel like I turned on a light bulb inside of me. It was definitely dim when I started, but as the day pass that light just keeps getting bigger and brighter.
Thank you for your support in this new chapter in my life. I truly could not have made it without your encouraging words and the love you showed me on the daily. If you want to jumpstart your fitness journey and live in NYC, please make an investment in yourself and check out the following options below.
Slay For Life
Celebrity trainer Robert Brace and media maven Kela Walker host this 28-day challenge. The workouts are 4x a week (Mon, Tue, Thu, Fri) at the Athleta studio in Flatiron at 7:30am. The workouts are done in an intimate group setting so that you get the focus and attention you deserve and there is a meal plan included. The class is made up of an amazing community of women who want to win and see each other win. I can't think of a better way to get started on this journey. Click here for details.
Sweet Water Dance & Yoga
You know how I feel about supporting our community. You know how I feel about supporting women-owned businesses, especially women of color. I really don't have to say much about this studio but just know it is everything! I've taken several classes here and I love it. The instructors are fun and there are sooooo many different type of classes. There's even classes for your babies! I love that I get to take "downtown classes" without having to go downtown, especially on weekends. It's right next to Yankee stadium so there's really no excuse not to stop by and support. They have a great promo going on at the moment for new clients. 30 Days of Unlimited Dance, Yoga or Boot Camp Classes for $49. Such a steal! Click here for details.
I'm not weighing myself again or drinking until my birthday on April 5th. I just want to have fun and enjoy this journey. I'll check back in with you then, but stay on the look out for some fun recipes and fitness tips I'll be sharing that have helped me along the way. I hope I can inspire at least one of you to commit to be the version of you possible. Thanks for reading!
P.S. - Denisse took to these photos at the beginning of my journey and I cannot believe how far I've come in just one month! So excited for what's ahead.