Fitness... UGH. Fitness can be hard. It takes time and commitment. It's confusing. It's intimidating. And it's hard to get started—especially on your own.
Personally, navigating the gym and figuring out what to do to stay in shape has been a major struggle for me since the day I left high school. During my high school years, hitting the gym wasn't even a thought. Between cheerleading, dance team, show choir, and running track every spring, I spent AT LEAST two hours a day in practice and rehearsal. Not to mention cheering football and basketball games AFTER practice (where I also performed with dance team at half time). And even competing in competitions on the weekends. Movement was my life. I never stopped and I never had to think about how to get in shape or keep myself in shape. That teenage metabolism certainly didn't hurt me either.
High school came and went in the blink of an eye and then BAM I suddenly wasn't moving anymore. I went off to school and I sat in lecture during the day and I sat and studied at night. I walked around a bit from class to class, but my movement was maybe a quarter of what I was used to. Sometimes I would venture to the gym to jump on an elliptical or treadmill, but I had no idea how to "work out." I had barely even stepped foot in a real gym. Weights? FORGET IT.
I eventually was brave enough to start taking some classes. Some yoga here, some cycling there. Oh, and I can't forget that Zumba class I took my freshman year at Pitt.
So that half-ass fitness thing went on for years. Like 6 whole years. 6. WHOLE. YEARS. In that time, I relied on ellipticals. I would go to the gym (sometimes 5 days a week) and put in my 30-45 minutes on an elliptical. Which was okay, I went through phases of weight loss but as a whole I got absolutely nowhere. Sure, it was movement but it wasn't doing much for my body and I knew it.
How I Got Started
The end of 2018 rolled around and I was fed up. I was ready to go to the gym, know what I was doing, and feel confident about it. Luckily, this magical community called GRLPWRPGH had recently come into my life and through that I had the opportunity to connect with a girl named Paige... who just so happened to be a local personal trainer and health coach. It's like the universe knew I needed some serious help or something?!
Fast forward to the beginning of 2019 and I worked up the courage to reach out to Paige to talk about training. Today, I am SO THANKFUL I sent that DM. Paige has helped me in more ways than I can imagine.
We started with a month of bi-weekly, one-on-one personal training sessions. Two nights a week I would meet Paige at her gym and during those 8 sessions she got me into the weight room and taught me how to lift. It was so intimidating at first, but Paige taught me the ins and outs of correct form, familiarized me with equipment, and increased my confidence in the gym by about 1000%.
Once I gained that confidence, we moved into a virtual training program. When I say "virtual training" that means Paige curates workouts for me every week, but I complete them on my own, in my own gym, on my own time. On top of those workout plans, Paige is always there to answer questions, address concerns, and provide support. She even sends daily text reminders about steps and mobility exercises. How awesome is that? It's amazing how much progress you can make when you have someone there to help keep you accountable.
I've now been working with Paige for close to 4 months and it has been a super positive experience. She makes you feel comfortable, is super knowledgeable, relatable, and most importantly believes in balance and listening to your body. My body certainly hasn't transformed overnight, but here's what has happened:
1) I'm so much STRONGER than I used to be. For context, my first session with Paige I was squatting 45 lbs. (That's just the barbell with no weight.) Now, I just hit a squat PR of 145 lbs. What?!!!
2) I'm so much more CONFIDENT than I used to be. I can walk into the gym, kill my workout, and feel good about it. Before this journey, just the thought of a weight room made me anxious.
3) I'm MOVING again. On top of workout plans, Paige also helps me meet step goals. I've been talking a walk almost every single afternoon and evening and I have fallen in love with it. It's like my therapy- my time to decompress.
The Best Thing I've Ever Done For Myself
If you're where I was and need a little help getting started, I HIGHLY recommend Paige's training services. It's the best thing I've ever done for my myself when it comes to health and wellness. Feel free to follow in my footsteps and shoot her a DM on Instagram. Or if you're more of an email person, hit her up at email@example.com. Feel free to shoot me a message too if you have any more questions about my experience!
Even if you're not looking for training, you should definitely give Paige a follow on IG and Facebook. This girl is so smart and is constantly researching really interesting health topics. She shares tons of recipes, tips, and fun facts about exercise and nutrition. I promise you her food shots will make you drool.