I met Jessica at a Christmas party essentially minutes after she moved to Port Hueneme. Her son was somewhere around 14 seconds old and she was just jumping right into conversation with this group of women I had met a number of times. While I sat quietly in my seat taking everything in, Jessica was relaying hilarious stories from her move and experiences in general. That’s the thing about Jessica, she’s just really fun! The following November I had put together my first Fit For Festivities challenge and she signed up to join. Up until then, I would consider us acquaintances through our husbands. We definitely chatted and got along, we had just never spent much time together outside of work gatherings for our husbands. When Jessica joined the challenge, she knew something had to change, but she was not quite ready to make that change yet.
Leading up to joining our group, Jessica had been to her doctor a number of times about back and knee pain. He told her she had two babies too close together – there isn’t really anything to be done about it. Obviously she dumped this doctor as soon as she could, but circumstances had her seeing him for far too long. One of the bigger issues turned out to be her gallbladder! When I launched the Bathing Suit Challenge in February, she was ready to commit! Jessica decided to do a round of Whole 30 in conjunction with the Bathing Suit Challenge. During the six-week challenge she lost 11 lbs and 19.5 inches.
What makes her success amazing is that during the fifth week of the challenge, her family and she were in a horrible car wreck. Thankfully they all survived with minimal injuries – Jessica’s of course being the worst. After the wreck she suffered from severe migraines and other aches and pains that she still has. In the months following her wreck Jessica and I chatted a lot. We continued to talk about throwing out the scale and focusing on how she felt. She could not workout often, but she stayed in the group for the support. Sometimes she couldn’t workout because she was physically incapable. Sometimes she didn’t workout because she was feeling bad for herself. According to her, she ate a little more than she had been, and had been indulging in more food outside what made her feel healthy. For the most part though, she ate well and didn’t put the weight back on that she had lost. It really showed me how much her mindset had changed over how to maintain her health.
By August Jessica decided she was done with her excuses. She decided that she was not going to be crazy and push through pain, but discomforts she could work around. She told her husband about her goals, and that was it. He doesn’t mess around with accountability. They looked up a 10k training plan (C210K – it’s a free app so I linked it up), looked up some races, and she put together a plan to combine her running and her Fitness With Kristen workouts. She has been killing it with her training, and still getting in her FWK workouts to enhance her running. She started off running only 90 seconds, and is now running for 30 minutes straight without stopping! She has fought tooth and nail for her health. She didn’t just decide she was going to be healthy and that was it. She had a bad wreck. She had awful doctors. She has moved five times and had two babies in the last four years. She has not let that stop her. This woman is so amazing and genuinely inspires me everyday. I asked her a few questions about her journey below.
For what reason did you join Fitness With Kristen? To learn how to make myself a priority again and physically feel better!
When you began Fitness With Kristen, what were your goals? What did you want to get out of Fitness With Kristen? Change my eating habits and make working out a priority! Make changes that would last and not just be a temporary fix.
What have been some of your biggest obstacles in reaching your goals? My biggest enemy is myself! I am my own worst critic and I have to constantly remind myself to look how far I’ve come and not focus on how far I still have to go!
Have your goals changed since you joined Fitness With Kristen? Yes, I’m no longer judging myself based on the scale:.. In fact, at the moment I don’t even own a scale. I weigh mostly when I go to doctors appointments and it’s nice to watch the numbers just keep moving down. I am now focused on feeling my best so that I can give my family the best of me!
What has been your success in terms of numbers? I am down close to 40 lbs total with about 20-25 of it being lost since starting FwK and still maintaining 22 inches total lost!
What has been your greatest health/fitness accomplishment in your journey? Regaining my confidence and feeling comfortable with myself again.
Has working out changed your attitude in other parts of your life? If so, how? Yes. It makes life easier. I have more patience, more energy and just a better attitude all around! I used to feel guilty for taking time for myself, now I can tell a huge negative difference in my attitude when I don’t!
What is your favorite healthy recipe? PaleOMG spaghetti squash pizza pie