It’s 5:45 a.m. on a Friday when I hear the ping.
“Are you up Kristyl? If not, get out of bed, you can do this!”
I wipe the sleep from my tired eyes, begrudgingly roll out of bed and head downstairs for the coffee maker.
But wait. Must drink a full glass of room temperature lemon water before my caffeine fix and start boiling the almond milk for my oatmeal.
Even though she’s not in my house, she’s in my head — I’m talking about my new accountability coach.
Yes, I said it, I have an accountability coach. Sounds kind of fancy, hey? Like something reserved for the Real Housewives of ____?
Well, I’m no reality star, nor am I even the teensiest bit fancy. I’m just a regular frazzled mom with a messy car, shrinking bank account and expanding waist line.
Ashley McIver is a fellow Valley Mom and neighbour of mine with a smoking hot bod, two young children and a brand new business coaching women like myself to be their best selves. Ladies, this woman has her shit together. She’s there to hold her clients to their choices and actions and encourage them to continue down a healthy path to their best self.
Having been a chronic yo-yo dieter since the age of 19, and someone who has struggled with an eating disorder and addiction issues in the past, I’ve always wrestled with that all or nothing mentality.
I’m by no means overweight, but my clothes have become tighter since my grandfather passed away last month. I’m what you’d call an emotional eater — if I’m sad, anxious or hurt, I’ll try to fill that hole in my soul with carbs… and plenty of them. Two years ago, it would have been wine, but that’s a whole other story.
I was eating with reckless abandonment, which I detailed in a food diary for my new coach. I cringed when she flipped through the detailed food log, remembering the greasy chicken wings, burgers, ice cream, chips and waffles, washed down by two massive virgin caesars — that was all consumed in one day. I felt like a sodium monster.
“Remember, losing weight and being healthy DOESN’T MEAN YOU ARE DIETING, ” explained Ashley during our first session as she took my measurements.
“We are just going to tweak your eating plan so to speak, and get you started on the right path. If you want to stay home and not set foot in a gym I will make you a home program you can work on 2-3 times a week at home and still see results.”
Since we started two weeks ago, Ashley has been helping me reach my goal of finding that happy-medium where I can have my thai takeout or cake AND the kale smoothies, and not feel guilty about any of it. She also has me dialled into a fitness regimen at the gym I’m already attending (Inspire Fitness) of two weight lifting classes a week, a cardio class and then 30 minutes of walking on the days I’m not at the gym. To fit these classes in, I’ve committed to a 6:15 a.m. weekly bootcamp class, which is something I would have NEVER done on my own.
There’s also the random fitness challenges that comes my way to keep things interesting.”
“So every morning before you work, do 50 squats in front of the mirror,” said Ashley in a text last week.
Today we are on to 20 pushups a day. Next week will be my least favourite exercise — planks!
Being a people pleaser and one who wants results fast and furious, it has been really nice to have someone keep me in check from going overboard.
“I did two classes today and already finished my pushups,” I replied, feeling pretty satisfied with myself.
Ashley was there to give me a reality check and reign me back in.
“Great! You’re an all or nothing girl… you need to give your body a rest as well K? Don’t become addicted, take a break for yourself too.”
And then there was the impromptu lunch with my mom that had me in a panic.
“Hey, what’s a safe sushi option?” I asked en route to the restaurant.
“Anything is fine in moderation,”she assured. “Remember, it’s not a diet, it’s an eating plan. If it’s not your cheat day, just get them to substitute the whole grain rice and avoid deep fried. It’s important not to get obsessed with it all just follow the appropriate plan.”
I’m not going to lie, it has been a lot of work prepping meals, swapping processed foods for homemade varieties and carving out gym time, but the rewards have been plentiful.
My energy level has skyrocketed, my skin is glowing and that extra bloat around my midsection has already pretty much vanished.
Today marked my three-week check-in — I already knew from how much better my jeans have been fitting that I have been making steady progress.
Starting weight: 147.8; now 141
Chest: 34.2; now 33.5
Waist: 30; now 30 (stayed the same)
Hips: 40.5; now 38
Don’t get me wrong, I’m not striving for skinny or perfection. Toned, glowing, balanced and being able to keep up with my girls are my ultimate goals.
Ashley says she can help me make that happen. After seeing the results I’ve experienced in just 21 days, I most certainly believe in her and, for the first time in awhile, in me.