When Alyssa sent in her 2 year progress photos this morning, her transformation stopped me in my tracks. She travels so much for work, but this girl has always made time for her health since she started in the LR Grace Lifestyle app. I think I can count the number of workouts Alyssa has missed on one hand. She has learned how to prioritize her time, her health and happiness.
When I got her email, I had so many questions with this being her best check-in yet. Having worked with clients for well over a decade, the physical transformation is what is obvious to them. However, clients care about so much more than just this. Helping clients transform their overall physical, mental and emotional approach is what really helps guide their well-being in the app and in the rest of their journeys. Don't get me wrong, getting a new wardrobe and walking around with a newfound confidence is beyond motivating, yes! But it's nearly 2020. We are all growing beyond just what meets the eye. The health and wellness industry will continue to shift beyond just the physical transformations of clients and incorporate more mental and emotional transformations to inspire others as well. I had to reach out to Alyssa and see if she would be able to dive deeper into her journey and share it with all of us. Luckily, she's the sweetest and agreed!
2 Year Progress Check-In Q&A with Alyssa:
Q: What was your "why" for starting?
When I thought about starting, I had just come off a 7-week deployment to Hurricane Irma with my job. That long disaster assignment was really life-changing in a lot of ways, and I came home wanting to re-evaluate some priorities in my life. The first weekend I was home, I had a conversation with my sister about how I was feeling about my life. Among other things, I told her how I was frustrated that I had let work become too much of a priority and hadn't taken care of myself over the years with exercise and nutrition. She encouraged me that it wasn't too late and knew of the LRGrace Lifestyle app from a friend who already worked with Laura. She thought it would fit well with my busy lifestyle since I could do the workouts even when I traveled. So I got started right away before I had too much time to think myself out of the idea!
Q: Were you working out before the app? Did you ever play any sports? No, I wasn't really working out before the app. I had tried as much as possible to walk 4 miles daily, but I wasn't able to be very consistent due to my travel schedule. I grew up with no natural athletic ability so never played sports much except for trying college tennis at my Division III college when they needed another player to fill out the team. Because I grew up with no natural athletic ability and was never taught that I could still be fit and healthy, I have really amazed myself in this journey. It has caused me to think about the damage we do to our kids by teaching them in school that organized sports is the only way to be fit and active. I am now living proof that is not the case!
Q: Besides the physical transformation, have things changed or shifted mentally or emotionally?
Yes, definitely. I now have an entirely new level of confidence to try new things and to think that I can do anything I set my mind to do. I've also found a whole new level of balance in my life. Before this journey, I would hide behind the excuse that I work too much or didn't have time to do everything I want to do. I've learned to make myself a priority and to fit in time to be a whole, well-rounded person. This also has led to finding time for hobbies and spending time with people I care about.
Q: What was your approach? Did you go cold-turkey on anything or was your journey slow and steady? Were there parts (nutrition/training) that were a little of each or were you pretty balanced overall?
My journey was pretty slow and steady. I had always been fairly healthy with nutrition (although it's harder when I travel), so the priority for me was really to focus on making time for the workouts. I honestly didn't expect such a dramatic transformation, which was nice at the beginning because I didn't expect too much of myself. It was really just about slow and steady, making sure I made time for the workouts, and not focusing too much on watching for immediate results. After a couple of months, I remember being surprised when I would pass a mirror because I started not recognizing myself. And after a few months when I would pull out an article of clothing I hadn't worn for awhile, I was shocked at how it already didn't fit.
Q: You travel A TON for work. How did you balance traveling, working and working out consistently 3x a week?
Honestly, the app is one of the only ways that has been possible to manage. One of my roadblocks in the past when I'd think about starting to work out was how I could never be consistent due to travel and work. The app has helped me find that consistency and eliminate excuses because I can literally do the workout anywhere and anytime. At the beginning of each week, I usually think through my travel and work schedule, and then I think through when I can fit in the workouts. I have found it's easiest for me to be consistent if I plan to work out first thing in the morning, but if that's not possible with my week, I plan when I can fit it in. When I travel, I have a sort of "go kit" of items I always take with me - yoga towel, my exercise bands, etc. and I usually check out the hotel website before I go so that I know what kind of equipment they have in their fitness center.
Q: Did you ever feel like giving up?
Yes, pretty much every workout at the beginning! I remember thinking that I wanted my workouts to be challenging but still fun and manageable. Since I was so out of shape when I started, it was a struggle just to make it through a workout and it didn't feel fun. A couple of encouraging family members talked me through it when I felt like I wanted to quit. After awhile though, I did start to have fun and to look forward to working out. And now I think I'm one of those strange people who actually enjoys going to the gym!
Q: How did taking progress photos make you feel?
Taking progress photos was always a huge surprise and shock to me. Since the transformation felt so gradual to me, I was always amazed when I'd look at the photos and realize how dramatic of a transformation it really was.
Q: 3 things within the app that helped you come this far?
I really love how responsive Laura is when I need a modification for travel. Since I was a total beginner when I started and all of these exercises were new to me, the videos were really helpful to demonstrate what I needed to do. And the peer support of logging a workout and encouraging each other has helped too.
Q: Has your transformation changed your confidence level at all?
Yes, I feel so much more confident in all aspects of my life now. This journey has showed me that I can do anything I set my mind to do, so I am even more excited to try new things than I was before. And this is funny, but I feel very confident in getting older and don't fear aging at all. I'm only a couple years away from turning 40, but I wouldn't want to go back to being 20 or 30. I am literally in the best shape of my life and feel beautiful and sexy!
Q: Your transformation is so inspiring. What's the next step on your journey?
Hmm, I really don't know. I've been really focused on just taking it one day at a time!
Thank you for sharing your journey with us, Alyssa! You are so wise for taking it one day, week, month, and year at a time! You have found balance, drive, and determination while becoming more fearless every day! I loved hearing your story. To be honest, I've already read it like 5 times. I am grateful for being able to guide you. Remember that you are your own true teacher and all your drive comes from within. I know you are beyond proud of yourself, and remember your friends, family and #teamlrgrace is too!
The video below details more on the LR Grace Lifestyle app. It is a customized online training app that is available anywhere, anytime to meet your own fitness goals.
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In Good Health,