Wednesday, January 09, 2013

My “30 Before 30” Project

I’ve had this post ready to go for a few days now, but due to huge Internet issues at work, I’ve been unable to post it… Hopefully everything will be resolved soon, and I PROMISE to be around to visit all of you ASAP!  Until then…here’s what I’ve been up to this week…


Picture me. I’m standing here, and I’m belting out, “It’s a new dawn! It’s a new day!” All Jennifer Hudson-like.


Oh, wait. That’s Weight Watchers. Shit. Nevermind.

But, really… It’s a new dawn. And a new day.

It’s 2013, baby. And I’m all about making this year better.

It’s time for a brand-new Jill. And it’s not going to happen by magic potion, or divine intervention. It’s all up to me.

I’ve always known this. This isn’t a new revelation. But with the beginning of a new year, I’ve found a new resolve; a new willpower.

I’ve been needing a change. Desperately. And I’m finally ready to make that change.

I can almost picture some of you sitting reading this, rolling your eyes and laughing.

Here she goes again…

Yeah. I know. You’ve heard all of this before.

I wouldn’t believe me either if I were you.

But I’ve reached that point where I’m feeling like enough is enough. The yo-yo weight problems I’ve dealt with my entire life are dragging me down, and I’m ready to do something serious about it (again).

I’ve learned over the past ten years that I have to reach this place on my own. No matter how many concerned family and friends tell me I should be focusing on my health and losing weight, I won’t do anything about it until I’m ready.

It’s an addiction. Plain and simple. I have a food addiction. I love food. I love food that isn’t good for me. I love junk.

But I know if I let my addiction go long enough, I will eventually start to feel like crud. When clothes start feeling tight, and I hate that reflection in the mirror. When I start to feel worry over my shortness of breath when I exert energy. When I see pictures of myself, and think Ew.


I love my cousins, and love this pic, but HATE that spare tire and double chin…and oh-so-much more…They are beautiful.  I am EW.

I reached “that place” sometime over the Christmas holidays. I can’t pinpoint the exact moment, but I literally felt like I put on 10 pounds over a few days. I was eating whatever I wanted, whenever I wanted, and it suddenly dawned on me that I was feeling uncomfortably full all the time. For those of you who don’t know what that’s all about, it’s a really gross feeling.

And you know when I think that ultimate moment of humiliation came? When I was babysitting my niece and nephew the day after Boxing Day, and 4-year-old Danica took her blanket (or “mossey”, as she calls it), and tucked it under a pillow very discreetly, sneaking a glance at me with a little smirk on her face.

Playing along, I said, “Hey! Where did your mossey go?! It disappeared!”

“I hid it, Jilly,” Danica said sweetly. “SO YOU CAN’T EAT IT!!!”

She giggled uncontrollably, and I laughed right along with her.

But at the same time, it was kind of that wake-up call that I so urgently needed.

I was eating too much. Clearly.

Fortunately, I already had the tools to start me on this new journey to a better me. And I finally had reached the point where I was ready to dig those tools out, and start wrapping my head around it all again.

It was several months ago that my friend and co-worker Jared informed me that he had become a Beachbody Coach. I wasn’t surprised to hear this, as Jared & his wife Holly are both very active, health-conscious people, and they have always been very motivational and encouraging when I’m on a weigh-loss kick.


There have been many days that I’ve thought, “Meh…I’ll skip my lunchtime walk today”, and Jared will come in and say, “Are you going for your walk today? It’s beautiful out there.” And 9 times out of 10… I do it. If he didn’t tell me to go, I probably wouldn’t.

So knowing that I would now have a Beachbody Coach sitting at a desk 20 feet away from me… it would be silly of me to pass up that resource and support, right?

Jared thought I might be interested in the TurboFire program that Beachbody offers. At first, I totally resisted the idea. Why? I have no idea. But all I can say is, I just wasn’t ready.

Then came Black Friday, and a 50% off deal. I sighed, and thought, “Maybe it’s time.” I shared the fact that I was considering purchasing the TurboFire program with my mom and my sister, half-expecting them to say, “Ack, it’s too expensive! Just use one of the dusty work-out videos you already have!”

They sort of surprised me by telling me they thought I should go for it. “You really do need to do something, Jill, and maybe if it cost you some money, you’d be more likely to follow through.”

So. I had Mom and Kara’s blessing. I placed my order that day, and a little over a week later, the TurboFire package arrived on my doorstep.

Jared was excited when I told him it had arrived. One of the things he does as a Coach is set up accountability groups, so that likeminded people can start the program at the same time, and check in with one another (usually via Facebook) to encourage and support one another and share their successes. He wanted me to jump right in with the TurboFire group that he had starting at that time, in early December.

I’m pretty sure that, having known me since we were kids, Jared already knew about my bull-headed stubborn streak. But he’s even more aware of it now. I told him I wasn’t ready to start TurboFire. Christmas was on the horizon, and as a food addict, that meant I was dreaming of the delicious delights that the Christmas Season would bring.

There is not set, strict diet plan for me to follow with TurboFire, but they do obviously emphasize the importance of a healthy, balanced diet, and they offer up many great healthy recipes and tips in a book included with the program.

Jared’s opinion was that if I started up pre-Christmas, I’d be more mindful of what I was eating over the holidays.

I didn’t want to be mindful. I wanted to be gluttonous.

So I stashed the TurboFire on a shelf in my house, and pushed it out of my mind.

And I ate like a mothertrucker.

On the day Danica teasingly hid her blanket from me so that I wouldn’t scarf it down, I started seriously thinking again about how I needed to lose weight – yes, now a necessity – and how perfectly this would coincide with the New Year’s Resolution I make every year: To drop pounds.  Big-time.

This time, I gave myself a specific starting goal (I seem to get better results when I have a target in mind), and that is to lose 30 lbs. before my 30th birthday, which will be July 28th of this year.  This is my very own “30 Before 30” Project.  I figure turning 30 is going to suck big-time, and if I don’t fit into any of my clothes and I feel like complete ass, it’s not going to be any easier.

I decided that by the time my 30th birthday rolls around, I want to feel as good about myself as I possibly can. It feels like a reasonable – and doable – goal to work towards.

By the time I returned to work last Thursday, January 3rd, I had absorbed all of the literature that came with TurboFire, I was beginning to cleanse my cupboards of the junk, I had started making my healthy foods shopping list, and I was feeling more and more excited about starting the program that following Monday.

When I saw my coach that morning, I declared, “Jared! TurboFire! I think I’m ready!”

“Awesome! There’s a new group starting January 14th!”

“NO! I’m starting next Monday! The 7th!”

Like, I said, Jared knows me pretty well. He didn’t bother arguing. He simply shrugged and said, “OK! Sure!”

Monday was my first work-out. I admit to being a little daunted before I started, because I’d seen a few snippets of the TurboFire classes, and this is some intense, fast-paced stuff. I wasn’t sure I could handle it. I thought I might die.


But I really liked the instructor, Chalene Johnson (thank God, because if she was anything like my ol’ pal Jillian Bitchface Michaels, I’d have quit on the spot), and I really loved the music. While I’m quite sure I looked like a frog in a blender for most of that first half-hour Fire Class, I actually felt like it was something I could catch on to fairly quickly, and it helped that there’s a girl doing the low-impact/beginner moves for me to follow. It made it a little less intimidating.

I can do this. I know I can.

It’s all a state of mind. I’ve done it before. I know I can do it again.

This time, I want to find a routine – both exercise and diet – that I can stick to. And I’m confident that TurboFire is a great way to kick it off. I’m also going to be starting Shakeology, the meal-replacement shakes that Beachbody offers, in the very near future.


Almost a year ago to this day, I had dropped 32 pounds completely on my own, just by exercising regularly, eating healthier, and avoiding junk food at all costs.

And then my world was turned upside down. Life sucked, and I gave myself a free pass to comfort myself with food. I ate to feel better at a time when nothing else felt good.

I was never able to get back on track. And now, almost a year later, I have gained it all back. Plus one pound.  This isn’t something I’m proud of.

I have many little goals this time around that I hope will become habits. Things like, “learn to love salad” and “follow the workout schedule, even when I don’t feel like doing it” and “become addicted to exercise”.

I don’t want this to be a fad. I want this to be my lifestyle. I want it to feel good, and to be part of my every day life. I need some structure to stick to.

So that the next time my world is turned upside down, I won’t retreat to my old ways, and seek asylum in the world of chips & dip, burgers & poutine, candy & chocolate.

This could be just another of my hollow promises. Another passionate post about changing my ways that will be dropped by the wayside, and forgotten in a few weeks.

Or it could be the start of something really awesome.

I have a support team behind me like no other.  All of the comments, “likes”, and messages on Facebook from friends and family members when I declared my “30 Before 30 Project” had begun on Monday are a true testament to that.

It’s up to me now to prove to all of you that I can do it.

It’s a new dawn. It’s a new day.

And I’m ready.


If you’re interested in TurboFire or any of the other programs Beachbody has to offer, or are just looking for information in general, feel free to get in touch with my coach, Jared.  You can visit his website here:  Team Integrity 

Yes.  I’m now part of something called Team Integrity.  That says it all right there, doesn’t it?! ;)


Stacie said...

It is a battle that not everybody understands, but I do and I'm rooting for you and trying to get my own self motivated.

Mandy said...

Way to go Jill!!!! You are totally inspiring me to jump on the bandwagon!!! Best of luck to you and I look forward to hearing about your progress!!!

Anonymous said...

You CAN do it, Jill! You did it once before and you can do it agian. Just stay focused and keep beleiving in yourself and keep us posted! I understand the feeling...I've gained about 20-25 pounds since the wedding and I feel frumpy too :(

Sarah said...

Sounds like a lot of fun! Exciting!! You can do it, just stick with it, and results will happen!

VandyJ said...

All it takes is the proper motivation and then the proper program. Good luck, I looking forward to seeing you win this one!

Nicole said...

Oh Jilly, that's awesome! And you can so do it. very obtainable goals right there! Now you make me want to check this thing out :)

Nancy said...

You can do it, you have an awesome support system. Jared will help keep you on track, I am sure. Believe in yourself.

Anonymous said...

Yay you! I love that you call it a lifestyle not just a fad. Getting healthy truly is a lifestyle change. I'll be here cheering you on and grabbing some of that enthusiasm to create my own new lifestyle!

Connie said...

I'm so proud of you for taking the steps to make changes in your life. Accountability is a big deal!

Can't wait to see you shrink!

Beth W said...

You go, girl! The best thing about doing what you're doing? The empowerment. You're making a change, that takes effort and mindfulness and sacrifice and work, but you will be SO fully in knowledge of your own kickassness when you start hitting those goals. And working out as well as eating better is going to make you healthier, happier, and even sexier. Wahooo!

Mrs. Match said...

You can do it Jill!! And you're so right-Jillian Michaels is a bitchface. I can't stand starring at her and those crater nostrils while she screams at people. Boooo!

You've had a rough past year and weight gain is more than understandable. But it's a new year and you've got this!!

Jodie said...

You CAN do it and you WILL, Jill! Best of luck to you!! Miss ya, friend, I should be back to fully blogging now!!

LeeLu Creations said...

I can so relate to this as I constantly struggle with my weight too.

Just remember, you got this! And you are beautiful too (inside and outside!).