Transforming Stephanie: Squats and Sparkling Water
By Stephanie Jullien, Member of Renaissance ClubSport Walnut Creek
They say that the best way to tell a story is to start at the beginning, so here we go. As I walked into Renaissance ClubSport for Day One of the first week of REV32, I couldn't help but feel excited. I was definitely ready to begin the program. That first session started with a weigh-in, which, for me, was pretty uneventful, since I already had an idea of what my number would be.
Right after weigh-ins was the much dreaded fit test. The first thing on the checklist was rowing. "OK. This isn't bad. I can do this," I said to myself, feeling confident. Next up was hand release-ups, and again I thought I was doing OK. But then came the wall squat. The challenge here is to last as long as you can and, well, I'm embarrassed to say that I went an unimpressive 1 minute and 18 seconds. As a former volleyball player, I did that every day for five minutes no problem. Silver lining: At least I can really look forward to seeing how much progress I can make on my wall squat time — and the other exercises, too — once we repeat the fit test at weeks four and eight.
Day One of REV32 also kicked off my new diet. Until now, I've been eating a very low carb diet, but the REV32 meal plan recommends that I up my intake. It's just a matter of picking out the right carbs, and the meal suggestions in the binder are really helpful. Perhaps the most valuable aspect of all this is the daily food logs. We fill them out, submit them, and receive feedback the next day, which is so great and really helpful for me. I'm convinced it's the daily food logs that will be key for my success, especially because when I consider eating something that's not on the recommended food list, I think to myself, "Do I really want to write this down and let them see that I cheated?" It’s a whole new sense of accountability that really helps me stay on track.
Unfortunately, I didn't manage to keep my clean-eating record blemish-free for long. My husband’s birthday was on Wednesday and it's his tradition to have yellow cake with chocolate frosting. I kept telling myself over and over again that I didn't need to have any cake. As I frosted it — with my four-year-old daughter's "help" — I tried so hard not to have any. Finally, with the cake completely frosted, I went over to the sink to wash the bowl and … I tasted some! Yikes! Although I did resist having cake that night, I wasn't too happy that I couldn’t resist the frosting.
Wednesday also happened to be the day of my very first 6:00am workout. Being a night shift worker for over 20 years, I get some of my best sleep between 4:00am-7:00am, so getting up to be at the gym by 5:45am for foam rolling and stretching wasn't so easy. However, it was amazing how fantastic I felt walking back to my car at 7:15am, workout completed.
I worked out four days in a row this week. On that fourth day, Ann (my REV32 coach), kept mentioning how things will rev up next week. I’m nervous but very excited to see how I do.
Day Five was my rest day. I needed it. My body felt sore and tired. Overall, though, my energy level has been great, which is a good thing because I needed every drop of it and tons of self-control to face one of my greatest battles when it comes to weight loss: Social events.
A friend of ours was having a party for their 40th birthday. As I was getting ready to go, I kept telling myself, "I'm not hungry. I don't need a drink. Make smart choices." I literally gave myself a pep talk in the car. And it worked! I'm proud to say that I resisted any cocktails that night. I walked around with one drink, a sparkling water with lime that could've easily been some kind of vodka drink.
My first week of REV32 was supposed to end with a group shopping trip to Sprouts with Ann. I couldn't attend because of a work conflict, but I heard it was fantastic, so I'm bummed that I missed it. It seems that Sprouts set up some samples of Ann's favorite picks for people to try. This whole thing just shows how well-rounded of a program this is.
Lastly, for those of you following my journey, thank you! Your words of encouragement have been quite motivating for me. Have great week!