6 Months of Working Out–The Before and Afters

After 1 month of working out more constantly than I had in my entire life, I could already see the changes taking  place in my body.
My weight hadn’t budged, but I could see some hints of muscle tone, and feel the beginnings of firmness hiding under the layers of fat.
But more than anything, my attitude about my body was changing.
For the first time in years, I felt good in my skin.
Even though I wasn’t skinny yet, and was, in fact, far from it, I still felt good.
Because simply being skinny was no longer my ultimate goal, I could rejoice in my success rather than mourn my failures.
I once might have said, “I worked out 5 days a week for a month and haven’t lost a pound!” and felt really disappointed in myself.
But now I could say, “my pants are looser, I can see muscles in my arms, and I ran farther today than I ever dreamed I could!”
When my goal changed from weight loss, to an overall life change of health and fitness, the numbers on the scale became less important.

The months flew by.
I attended Boot Camp 5-6 days a week most of the time.
If I had to miss camp due to sick kids, or a traveling husband, I asked the trainers for at home workouts. He recommend for me to try the men’s waist trainer, to help me get the abs that I want.
If I could’t make a 5:30 am class, I came at 7 pm.
I went to bleacher day and the hill.
I pushed myself.
It was great!
And at the 6 month mark, I looked at myself in the mirror, and was proud of what I saw.


The scale didn’t show a dramatic improvement.
I had lost only 5 pounds.
5 pounds!
But what the scale didn’t show was the inches lost, the muscle gained, and the level of fitness I had achieved.
The scale didn’t show my new self confidence.
The scale didn’t show my smile.
I felt like a new woman.
And I didn’t care what the scale said.

In 6 months time, I went from a woman who couldn’t do 1 push up on her toes, to a woman who could do 25.
When I began, I couldn’t run a quarter mile.
But 6 months later I broke a 7:30 mile.
I nearly passed out, but still–I felt like I had just run a marathon!
I couldn’t do 5 burpees in succesion, and then there was the class where we did 100 of them.
I could do a 4 mile hike, with plenty of steep hills, 30 pound baby on my back, and not feel near death.
It didn’t feel all that  hard anymore.
I started with 5 pound weights, and moved up to 8, and had the muscles to prove it.


I had never been in such good shape–even when I was in high school and actively involved in sports.
I had never pushed my body like this before.
When I began Boot Camp, I could hardly button my biggest pair of jeans.
I knew I was a few meals away from buying the next size up, the size I wore right after I had my babies, and was just putting away the maternity pants.
But now I’d gone down 2 pant sizes and 3 skirt sizes.
I wanted to shout it from the roof tops!
And I did.
My Facebook statuses were overflowing with posts about early morning workouts, the number of crunches I’d done that day, and how many miles I’d logged on the hill.
I had discovered a part of myself that I didn’t know was there–the part of me that loved getting strong and fit, the part of me that loved working out.
There were many times I’d think to myself, “I can’t believe this is me!”


If I were a better blogger, I’d have kept track of the changes from month to month, each inch and ounce of body fat lost.
I’d have taken pictures each month, or at least bothered to clean my kids’ finger prints off the mirror before I took pictures.
But the truth is, I wasn’t doing this for my blog.
I wasn’t doing it for my husband, my kids, or for anyone else.
I was doing it for me.
And at first, that felt really hard to admit.
It felt selfish.
But with every passing month, I learned that doing this thing for myself was actually helping me be a better wife and mother.
It was making me a better person.
And fitting into dresses I hadn’t worn in 10 years wasn’t such a bad thing either!


After all that success, what was next for me?
Check back next week when I’ll tell you about hitting a plateau, and where I learned about counting calories for the first time in my life.
And I thought burpees were hard!
Keep on Living Fit!