This week we feature a touchstone in the Fitocracy community. Everyone, get excited. It’s time for Lillie! If you know of a Fitocrat deserving of a weekly member spotlight, simply contact users lexyloowho or xJenx or email email@example.com.
How did you get started in fitness and training? Do you have any pics to share?
I have always been on and off with different diets and exercise plans, but always went back to my starting weight, due to the lack of willpower and depression. Not exercising and constantly gaining weight caused me to become Insulin resistant which later led being diagnosed borderline diabetic. At my worse point I had a number of health problems including fatty liver, GERD and even joint problems. That is when I told myself I needed to do something. I am still young and have a small little girl that I need to live for, so I decided to change my diet. My first step was to start tracking calories and maintaining a food diary. I learned to balance keeping my fats, sugars and carbs low and my proteins high and lean. I also got a membership at a gym and I started working out 6 times per week. At first I was just doing mostly cardio like every person out there, you will think that doing only cardio you will look good and lose weight and of course I was wrong. I lost weight but my skin was getting quiet loose so I started with C25K program and I incorporate it to my workouts running 3-4 times per week. I have lost 81 lbs. so far, went from size 16W to size 6/7 jeans. My beginning weight was 216 lbs. and now it is down to 135 lbs. So pretty much fitness has become a daily routine of my life.
From 216 lbs to 144 lbs. Current weight: 135.
(Scroll to the bottom for more pics)
How did you find Fitocracy? How has it changed your workouts?
I found Fitocracy throughout a friend that I met online. He had been a member for a while and he told me that I look like the type that would like the Fitocracy community. When I first joined the site was still in Beta (around March 2012) and it has since changed my life. Initially I was just doing and logging cardio machines thinking to myself that I would look good and lose weight. I also combined this with a paid personal training to help me get off my feet. She mostly recommended that I stick to weight machines but the more I used Fitocracy I noticed that more and more people were dedicated free weight users. Even though I still have a long way to go and learn I gave it a try and am really happy with all of the support I have received from the amazing Fitocracy community.
Do you have any long term goals or direction you plan to take your training?
My long-term goals revolve around correct weight training techniques to gain strength and build muscle. To accomplish this I plan of getting a coach through an Olympic weightlifting gym to assist in perfecting my forms including the dead lift. By utilizing a strict diet plan I am directing myself to reduce my body fat index and direct my workouts to a better me. These plans are currently on hold as I am recovering from a bad injury but still trying to do my best within my capabilities.
What are things you’ve learned through trial and error? What areas do you hope to learn more about?
As added cardio and variety I started going to boot camp style classes at least two times a week. They were fun but did not really provided me with any long-term benefit. I also felt that it was doing more harm than good so I moved on to concentrate on weight training/lifting. I am currently expanding and perfecting my weight lifting forms and techniques to prevent further injuries and maximize muscle gains with the right nutrition.
Currently, where would you say your weakness lies? Where do you excel?
My main weakness is that I tend to push myself too hard and am very impatient. These two things also motivate me to do more and excel at anything I set my mind to.
What motivates you?
My main inspiration is my daughter, second is my health. I spent many years feeling unhealthy due to the lack of exercise and bad dieting. Third, every time that I see a nice lady with a nice body with nice curves and some well defined muscle, it inspires me to keep going with my fitness goals.
Are you using any supplements or special dietary changes to achieve your goals?
Right now, nothing special, just multivitamins, fish oil and calcium. Also tracking calories, focusing on protein first, second veggies and third starches. Having protein shakes daily and trying to eat as healthy as I can. Lately I been trying some Paleo style recipes.
If you could give advice to someone starting off, what would you tell them?
That failure is never an option. You need to work hard to achieve what you want in life, it takes a strong mind to build a strong body. And any weight loss or weight training journey isn’t easy, there is a lot of bumps on the road and you must go through them. You did not get out of shape overnight so do not except instant results. You could fall 20 times but you need to stand up every time you fall to keep going. The feeling of living a healthy life style should motivate you to keep going. Never stop, if you fall, then stand up and fight.
What’s your ‘secret weapon’, the thing that pushes you or you feel gives you an edge?
The thing that pushes me the most is looking at my before pictures. They make me to never look back to who I was and inspire me to push myself harder and keep working hard to reach my long term goals. I don’t want to go back to feeling ill and sad. I want to smile and feel stronger than ever.
What has the overall impact of Fitocracy been in your life?
Fitocracy has changed my life completely. I came here knowing zero about weight training and met great community members that are that are way more knowledgeable than me. These members range from a number of abilities to include power lifter trainers that have corrected and taught me a lot. Overall it has been an amazing experience for me. I also have met some Fitocrats friends in person. It is always such a great experience to meet people who are interested in the same aspects of fitness that you are. This is a wonderful community and I love my Fito family, therefore I will continue supporting this website telling others about it and how awesome has made me J
One thing I want people to take away from my story is…
Things are not always as easy as they seem. Some people might think that it was easy for me to lose weight but it hasn’t been. I still need to track my calories, keep my food diary and exercising to maintain this weight and don’t go back to who I was. I am not perfect and sometimes I make mistakes, but when I notice, I go back to adjusting my diet and exercises. We all make mistakes, and If I could do this, you can do this too. Every day I look at the old Lillie pictures and I tell myself to never give up, and most important to Believe that I CAN keep going on. Be positive, stay strong and make your dreams to happen.
From size 16 waist jeans to size 9. Currently size 5-8.
A tattoo with the word “Believe” that I got to celebrate my weightloss.