Happy Motivation Monday!
Have you seen this week’s Weekly Schedule!? Start planning your week NOW…We know it’s cold outside, but we’ve got the perfect mix of workouts to get you warmed up and feeling amazing every day!
Today, we are so excited to share Michelle’s story with all of you! This Tone It Up Nutrition Plan member is a fun loving mother of two. She decided to change her life and take charge of her health so she could be a role model for her two girls ~ How inspiring! You’re going to love her story. Enjoy!
“Having two girls was the biggest push for me to get healthy, strong and comfortable in my skin. I want to be the best role-model I can be for them. I want them to look at me as a fit, fun and happy woman, so they can strive to be that too!”
Tell us about yourself!
I’m Michelle, age 29 and I live in Upstate NY. I’m a stay-at-home mama of two beautiful little girls, ages 7 months and two years. I’ve been married to my husband for three years, but we’ve been together for 7. We have one dog named Emmylou. She’s a beagle and we just lost her sister in September to coyotes, which was so heartbreaking for all of us. My husband and I are both very close to our families. I have two sisters, both of who know all about Tone It Up. My younger sister, Megan, has now joined the team too!
Your transformation is so inspiring. How long was it between your before and after pics?
Thank you! About seven months has passed between the before and after pics. I had my youngest daughter in April 2013, and the before pics were taken shortly after.
What made you decide to change and what was your biggest inspiration?
After I had my last baby girl, I wanted to lose all the weight I had gained while pregnant. However, three months after having her, I went camping with my husband, our girls, and my in-laws. It had only been three months since giving birth, and I should’ve been more forgiving towards myself, but I wasn’t. I was very uncomfortable being in any sort of summer attire. The moment that I decided to change, the biggest inspiration to finally do so for good, was when my in-laws, my husband and my two year old decided to go to the beach. I didn’t go and decided to hang out at the camper with my three month old. I was SO uncomfortable with myself in a bathing suit and I missed out on having a fun adventure with my own daughter–because of how I looked! I was ashamed and mad at myself. That decision, however, lead to the best decision I’ve ever made: I made a vow right then and there that I would do whatever it took to feel comfortable in my own bare skin, so that I’d never miss out on an opportunity like that again with my children. Having two girls was the biggest push for me to get healthy, strong and comfortable in my skin. I want to be the best role-model I can be for them. I want them to look at me as a fit, fun and happy woman, so they can strive to be that too!
What goals did you set for yourself?
I’m still working on reaching my goal weight, BUT I have seen progress everywhere in my body, and in my life. I’m so much happier. I’m definitely radiating some of the sunshine Katrina & Karena send us from California! My first goal was to lose the twenty-five pounds I gained during pregnancy. Next, was to start incorporating more work outs. Currently, my goal is to reach that goal weight, but mostly it’s to feel really good in my own skin and to continue feeling happier and happier with myself! I set small goals in order to reach the big one. That way as I reach each small goal, I think, “Yes! I’m doing awesome!!” This feeling fuels me to KEEP GOING!
How did you find out about Tone It Up?
Through SELF magazine! I looked them up online and was hooked! At the time though, I was 7-8 months pregnant, so I was looking forward to working out with my new trainers once I had my baby girl.
How did you keep yourself motivated to keep going?
Lots of little ways: making & looking at my vision board, re-reading the Tone It Up Nutrition Plan, checking the blog regularly, watching my favorite Tone It Up YouTube videos, and of course, looking at my girls!! When I’m struggling to hold a plank, I think, “do this for them!” Also, now that I’m a Tone It Up Girl Success story, this will keep me forever motivated! ;)
Did you have any setbacks along the way? If so, how did you overcome them?
Yes. I had cyst located on my tailbone area that flared up just when I was ready to work out with my new trainers! This put working out on the back burner, but I continued to watch what I ate. In September I had surgery on my tailbone to remove the cyst, and it healed faster then the doctor expected. I was able to really begin working out!
Now I have really tiny “setbacks” weekly, such as not fitting in a workout on a daily basis. I am still doing pretty darn good in the eating department, but still struggle with fitting in that time to work out. I’d LOVE to actually have a BootyCall workout but unfortunately, my girls have me up (for the day, mind you) between 4 and 5 am!! I just try really hard to fit in something, and if I don’t, I think “OK, tomorrow then! At least I ate well and I’m trying!!”
How has following the Tone It Up Nutrition Plan contributed to your success?
After I had my youngest child, in April 2013, I slowly started eating Lean, Clean & Green as much as possible. Then, for my birthday my awesome husband bought me the Tone It Up Nutritional Plan and that has definitely stepped things into high gear for me! It is so informative and well laid out. I call it “My Bible.” I don’t think I’d be as successful as I am if I didn’t have that portion of Tone It Up. I wouldn’t keep up with eating healthy as a lifestyle, without it.
What are you doing now to keep up with your healthy lifestyle?
I’m eating as Lean, Clean & Green as possible, working out when I can and trying to convince everyone I know and love to join with me. Now, I also Check in on Instagram, which helps me stay accountable and inspired while getting to know other team members!
What are some of your favorite healthy foods and snacks? What did you have for lunch today?
I love hummus, avocado, almost all veggies, fruit, almonds, the Perfect Fit Protein pancakes, the Bombshell Spell and the homemade protein bars. For lunch I typically have a veggie stir-fry. My favorite!! I usually throw in black beans, onions, peppers, mushrooms, tomatoes and broccoli and serve it either plain or over brown rice or quinoa.
How do you treat yourself while staying on track?
I try to treat myself with healthy items like the 3 ingredient cookies or plain greek yogurt with stevia, cinnamon and a handful of dark chocolate chips. I just have to watch myself with those cookies–they’re so good I could eat them all in one day! :)
What is your workout routine like?
I usually get up really early with my girls and if it works out, I do strength training first thing, and then more later in the day after my youngest baby goes to bed for the night. If they nap at the same time, or my husband is home, I fit in cardio with a walk, jog on the treadmill, or a fitness DVD.
What are your favorite Tone It Up workouts?
I really like the Love Your Body series and all of the booty workouts. I love the new site too and the Playlists are awesome!
What advice would you give someone who needs motivation and encouragement to get healthier?
This is a lifestyle choice, not a quick fix and it’s going to take a good chunk of time before you reach your big goal. It’s important to really be okay with those facts. Take a deep breath, and begin. Take one day at a time; take on one small goal at a time and try to have FUN with this! Try out new recipes each week or even every day if you want! And really, how could you not have fun following along with Tone It Up workout videos?! I would also advise to make a vision board, because that’s something you can always look at to quickly to get motivated.
Tell us about your current goals? What are you looking forward to in the next few months?
I really want to get back into running! I love running and competing in races so much! I also CANNOT wait for the next challenge! It’ll be the first chance I have to participate in one fully now that I’m healed from surgery and not having babies! :)
The team wants to connect with you! Where can we find you?
I’m in love with Instagram! Find me @tiumichellemalone
Thanks so much for sharing your story with the team Michelle!!
Do you want to join the Tone It Up Nutrition Plan?
It’s never too late to change your life, change your body and start living the healthy, happy, energetic life you’re meant to be living!
We want to hear from YOU! What did you find most inspiring about this story? Check in with the team and let us know!
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