#TrackerTales: Lifestyle Change Equals Big Change for Tina

Day #2 went well for me – after a bit of a rough start. Low back pain kept me in bed late. But I rallied, inspired by Mary’s #TrackerTale, and managed to get my 10,000 steps in before day’s end. It sure feels great when that Fitbit buzzes and I know I’ve hit my goal – and I also managed to go to bed with 70 calories left for the day.

Not bad, Annie, not bad. On to Day #3!

I’m excited to share another #TrackerTale – another powerhouse woman who has made big changes with the help of an activity tracker. Tina is a 30-something mama of two who lives in Atkins, Iowa. I’ve watched her progress on Facebook and was blown away by her transformation.

Here’s her story:

Tell me about your weight loss journey. When and why did you start?
I started in November 2012 after I had my son that September. I didn’t like the person I saw in the mirror. I wanted to feel good about myself and be a good example for my kids. I can tell you the most important aspect to my weight loss is that I did it for me. No one else. It was all about me. Then I decided to not call it a ‘diet’ but a ‘lifestyle change’ – because, honestly, who sticks to a diet?

What approach did you take?
First thing I did was download the app myfitnesspal and started to track everything I put in my mouth. Water, gum, bread, etc. Boy was I way way over their recommended calorie count. So after tracking this for two weeks I decided to try and stick with their 1,500-calorie goal for me. It was very hard at first, but then I learned what I could and could not eat. There were many days I went way over my calorie goal, but I was learning. I did this for two months. At the two-month mark, I was losing about 1-2 pounds a week. Not bad, right? But then I cut out all bread and alcohol. It was much easier to stick to my calorie count with taking bread out.
Things were going great! I felt full. Lots more energy, but I wanted to step it up another level so I started to exercise three to four times a week with cardio. This truly helped me lose 3-4 pounds per week and my energy level was going through the roof. Cardio was great, but then I wanted more definition in my arms and legs and such. So I started to lift weights. I started out small with only doing three moves a day with weights and then running a mile or two after I had lifted. To this day I exercise at least five times a week, varying my workouts from cardio to jump roping to lifting weights.

How did you decide on this approach?
I wanted to do a program I could maintain and control on my own – and that I would keep for the rest of my life. Again, I didn’t want it to be a diet – rather a change in my lifestyle.

What success have you had?
I was a size 18 when I started in November 2012 and by October 2013 I was in a size 2! In all, I lost 70 pounds and I am still a size 2-4 to this day!

What has been your motivator to losing weight?
Again, my weight loss was for me. I wanted to look and feel strong. I wanted to be a good role model for my kids. I wanted to show them being healthy and fit is fun and also show them you can do anything you put your mind to. I wanted to show all that if you truly put your mind to something, you can accomplish anything!

You have said, “Fitness is my new passion and it all stemmed from believing in myself and doing the things that were best for me.” Tell me more about this.
I’ve always been a confident person, but after having two kids, my confidence was gone. I was insecure and unsure. I didn’t like this person. So I made a change that I thought would help make me feel better. As soon as the weight started coming off, I started to gain my confidence back. I started to believe in myself. I started to become more of a role model for my children. I took control of my life!

Why did you choose Fitbit Charge HR over other activity trackers?
I chose it because it measures my sleep patterns and my heart rate. I think measuring your heart rate is essential to knowing how hard you are working. So whatever tracker you decide, it needs to measure your heart rate to be truly accurate.

What do you love about your tracker?
Tracking the calories burned. If I lift weights, I can add it in manually. I love knowing exactly how many calories I have burned. Tying the tracker to myfitnesspal is truly an effective and efficient plan.

Do you recommend using an activity tracker? Why/why not?
I really like it from the accountability standpoint. You can see exactly if you burned more calories than you took in. You can’t fight the numbers!

What else has been important to you on your journey?
Getting a gym membership. I love going to the gym. I am inspired by the people that I meet. Fitness can be fun. It is hard work, but the confidence and friends you gain are priceless.

What words of wisdom do you have for others who are just starting out?
– This is a lifestyle change not a diet. If you think of it like a diet, you will waiver off course.
– Lift weights. People over 30: cardio alone will not help us increase our metabolism. Lifting heavy weights will. So always switch up your workouts.
– Don’t give up!
– Eat 4-5 meals daily, spaced out 3 to 4 hours
– Do what is best for you! You know your body best.

#TrackerTales focuses on people who have successfully used their activity trackers to transform their bodies – and lives. If that describes you, please contact me. I’d love to share your story here. OR if you’re like me and just getting started, fire up that tracker and join me.

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  1. Jodi says:

    Way to go Tina! What a great story!

    I started lifting seriously about 5 years ago. I have participated in 2 powerlifting meets since. I got first in my age category over 40! And 3rd overall for my weight – all ages.

    Weights are the key!

  2. […] are a few of you out there who are with me on this journey – or who have gone before me (like Tina and Mary) and demonstrated that consistent effort really does lead to great […]

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#TrackerTales: Lifestyle Change Equals Big Change for Tina #TrackerTales: Lifestyle Change Equals Big Change for Tina #TrackerTales: Lifestyle Change Equals Big Change for Tina