"I spent 28 years of my life having a certain body image. Now I have to adjust and understand that I am more than just my body. A certain body type doesn’t mean happiness."
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"I spent 28 years of my life having a certain body image. Now I have to adjust and understand that I am more than just my body. A certain body type doesn’t mean happiness."
For a portion of Anastasia's younger years, she struggled drastic weight fluctuations and body dysmorphia. In middle school, she weighed less than 70 lbs at a height of 5'5". Then, she gained 80 lbs in her recovery phase. "I was one of two things," she remembered. "At first, I was a girl who struggled with anorexia and bulimia for two years. Next, I was a girl who had gained too much weight after going on a pill I was given for recovery. I was unhappy and I hated my body. That's when I found PumpUp and my life truly began to change." Two months into Anastasia's journey, she had a hard time finding motivation to maintain healthy habits. Members from the PumpUp community helped her to get back on track.
Picture a girl who is working her hardest at the squat rack. She's proudly adorning loudly-patterned calf-high socks. She doesn't have makeup on, her hair is up, and sweat is dripping off of her body. That girl is the most confident girl in the room: she has taken everybody else out of the equation. In this moment, the only thing that matters to her is that she's doing the best that she can with her body. "That girl is me," said Anne, a PumpUp motivator who has come a long way in terms of body confidence and self-acceptance.
You can't develop a positive body image from exercise alone. Holly was no stranger to an active lifestyle before she joined PumpUp, but her confidence was at an all-time low. Though Holly trained in classical ballet for over 20 years, something went amiss once she entered the workforce. "I joined PumpUp because I wasn't happy with my body," she confessed. "I was uncomfortable, and I had more body fat than I wanted. I had trouble finding ways of exercise that I felt comfortable with." More ballet classes seemed like the logical answer, but when Holly took a look at herself in the mirrors of her dance studio, she became quickly discouraged. "It depressed me to see how out of shape I became," she lamented. "It seems backwards, because taking ballet class would have only benefitted me. PumpUp was a great way to exercise in the comfort of my own home."
Before Holly began her journey with PumpUp, she ate copious amounts of junk food and fast food. "I didn't exercise regularly and I didn't drink enough water," she shared. "My average day consisted of waking up and going to work without eating breakfast. I would drink coffee at work and not eat anything until lunch." Holly used to skip breakfast and opted for high fat meals during lunch and dinner. She was sedentary during her evenings and went straight to bed after work, often watching movies right before she went to sleep.
Once Holly joined the PumpUp community, her lifestyle made a drastic change. She began her journey on PumpUp a few months after her father died of a heart attack in early 2014. "He had type 2 diabetes and I missed him terribly," she said solemnly. "His death made me really aware of the effect that our diet has on our health. It made me more motivated to live as healthy as possible." With the help of PumpUp, Holly eased into the rhythm of an exercise routine that she loves. "I'm now proud to dance in front of a mirror in a leotard," she said proudly. "I maintain a plant-based diet and I drink water frequently. I do yoga, take ballet class, jog, climb stairs, cycle, and I really do enjoy PumpUp workouts — especially those that involve core strength and weightlifting.
Other PumpUp members motivated Holly to find peace with her body. "I want to help motivate people the way others on PumpUp have motivated me," she insisted. "Reading peoples' posts and looking at their progress has been inspiring and informative and has helped me reach my goal of achieving and maintaining a healthy lifestyle. I hope to give back in the way that others have given to me."
She advises other PumpUp members to believe in themselves, regardless of where they are along their health and fitness journey. "Confidence grows," she counselled. "Remember that our bodies are all that we really have. No matter how hard reaching our goals seems, sometimes it is worth it. Without our health, we have nothing." The PumpUp community helped Holly find confidence in herself and she encourages others to find a positive forum where they can share about their victories and struggles. "PumpUp is a great, supportive place full of likeminded people - people looking to become a better version of themselves just like you are," she professed.
Holly's Daily Routine
I wake up and get ready for work while my amazing husband makes us smoothies. I drink my smoothie and have coffee at work. For lunch, I eat bananas and oranges, and I drink water all day. I come home, have a healthy snack and do one or a few of my favorite forms of exercise. Finally, my husband and I make a healthy dinner together and eat earlier in the evening than we used to.
Holly's biggest motivation
My biggest motivation is my husband as well as myself. I love my husband and I love life. I want to lead as healthy of a life as I can for as long as I can. This way, I can have as much time with my husband as possible.
Holly's workout routine
I love PumpUp workouts but I don’t have one favourite. I like to do a different PumpUp workout, focusing on different areas of the body for a short amount of time - about 30 minutes. I like to combine this workout with stretching or jogging or yoga. Aside from that, I love taking ballet class. I go one or two times a week.
More about Holly
I am a professional performer! I am a classically trained ballet dancer and for the past several years I’ve had the joy of doing what I love, which is performing. The productions I dance in are burlesque shows but with the unique twist of featuring highly trained ballet dancers. It’s a dream come true!
Keep Holly Pumped! Find her on the app @veganballerina and let her know if you have any questions in the comments below.
Chloe's Favorite Exercise
All you need is a pen and paper to make a difference. That's the mission of Operation Beautiful, a project determined to end negative self-talk through the medium of positive, thoughtfully-placed post-it notes. The movement recognizes that there is extraordinary power behind random acts of kindness, as good deeds have the tendency to spread like a contagion. If you feel like doing a good deed on Motivation Monday (or any day, for that matter), consider taking up one of these body positive art projects:
This is an example of body positive art that PumpUp member @midge623 found at her local gym. It's a wall dedicated to sharing positive thoughts, quotes, and messages about body image.
This body positive sticky note from Operation Beautiful was placed on various mirrors of public restrooms to remind visitors about how beautiful they are.
In this project, participants were asked to sit in front of a white-board while others were asked to write positive qualities about the seated person. Each participant was not allowed to look at what was being written until the photograph was taken.
This person shares encouraging post-it notes between the pages of library books that they've returned.
Artist Augustina Woodgate 'poetry bombs' thrift stores by sewing poems into articles of clothing. The same can (theoretically) be done for body positive quotes.
Inspired by these ideas? Share your favourite ways to motivate others on #MotivationMonday with the PumpUp Community!
I am trying to remember when I first became self-conscious of my body. When did I go from being a happy-go-lucky girl to being ashamed of my body? I can’t pinpoint when that happened exactly. I remember when I was in fifth grade, wanting to look like other girls in my class because I was bigger. I remember boys in middle school making fun of my c-cup sized boobs. I remember when the insult “fat” was hurled at me like a torpedo when I’d get into an argument with my friend’s sister. In 6th grade, I remember crying myself to sleep a lot of nights because I thought that I was just so hideous and not good enough. This all breaks my heart. I’ve always thought that those experiences have made me into the strong confident woman that I am today. But looking back, I was a pretty strong person all along. One of my favorite quotes is from Mother Teresa, “If you judge people, you have no time to love them.” I had this written on a sheet of paper that I carried around in my purse when I was in high school. Another quote from that same sheet of paper said, “Sticks and Stones can only break bones, but words can shatter the soul.” I’ve seen this quote attributed to Adam Savage. I think I came across it in a Chicken Soup for the Soul book. I read a lot of those back then. And my, how true those words are.
Words can wound pretty deeply and cause a lot of emotional damage. People can be so cruel, especially when they are hiding behind a computer screen. It is so shocking to me, some of the savage things I have read on the Internet – complete strangers hurling insults and unsolicited advice at anyone who is different than they are. I shudder to think about how my life would have been if I grew up in the age of social media. Being different or uncool was hard enough without the pressures of living life in such a public way - Facebook, Snapchat, Instagram, Tumblr, and probably a ton of other social media platforms that I am too old and out of touch to even know about. I don’t understand the desire to tear someone down to build you up. You are enough. Although I guess I can understand it a little since I tore myself down on a daily basis in the past because I didn’t realize that I was enough.
I don’t pretend to know the answers. How do we stop bullying? I know that education is important - education about bullying, education about positive body image, education about self-worth, education about love. I also think that some bullying is learned behavior. It’s up to all of us to be positive role models for our youth. Let me say that again: It’s up to ALL of us.
I try not to preach about things because I definitely don’t have the answers. People get bullied for all kinds of reasons, not just about weight or body image. All I knew to do was to cry and let it out and tap into that inner strength to get through it, because it did get better. It took me a while to get to the place in my life where I knew that I was enough, but I got there. So for all those that are out there struggling, please know that you are not alone. You are never alone. Also know that you are enough. No matter what, you are enough. All of our strengths and weaknesses and quirks make up this wonderful tapestry of life. I know that sounds so cheesy, but I realize it more and more every day. If any of you ever feel that it’s a little overwhelming or you're struggling with the “enough” part, please reach out to me. And for everyone else that gets it - all of you who realize your self-worth and know that you are enough in life, don’t you want to lend a helping hand to others on that journey from time-to-time?
This is a post by PumpUp member @k_c, a vivacious blogger based in Central Arkansas. Learn more about her through her blog: voluptuousmisadventures.com.
I think one of my biggest problems in the past was that I did not truly know myself. It's still a learning process. When you don't really know yourself, it is so much easier to fall into the trap of what works for others but may not work for you. Trust me, I have fallen into that trap time-after-time (cue Cyndi Lauper music). Now listen, I am certainly not saying that you should stop experimenting with things in life or trying new things. I think it is important to branch out from time to time and learn new things. But, don't get mad at yourself if what works so well for someone else doesn't really work for you. We are all different people and are at different stages in our journeys. Most of us are on different journeys all together. I have come to realize that I have to figure out what works for me. I've been on so many different diets. It would make your head spin: Weight Watchers, Sugar Busters, The Cabbage Soup Diet, The Grapefruit Diet (to this day, I can't even look a grapefruit in the eye), the Atkins Diet, the Dukan Diet, the Good Life Diet, whatever that Susan Powter one was, Nutrisystem, Slimfast, the Xyngular diet, the South Beach Diet, herbal supplements, Adipex, and praying that I had a thyroid problem so I could just get medication to fix this diet. And you know what? None of those diets really worked.
Sure, they may have worked for a short time, but I always ended up gaining some or most of the weight back. I now know that I need to work on the mental component and really embrace a lifestyle change that works for me. I also have finally come to terms with the fact that it should be less about the pounds lost and more about my health. Sure (for me) it is important to my health to shed some of this fat. However, losing weight is only one aspect of my overall health journey. It took me a long time to realize that, and I constantly have to remind myself.
Now here's some real talk; something that I don't really admit to people, least of all myself: I am very frightened that I am no longer going to know who I am if I'm not "the fat girl." All my life, pretty much since puberty if not before, I have been overweight. I have come to identify myself as the fat one. That's just who I am. So much of my personality has been about saying, "Eff you world, I'm fat AND fabulous."
I guess that I am scared of what I will become without that badge; like I should be admired because I maintained an awesome existence in spite of being the fat lady at the circus. It's been a little horrifying to start peeling back the layers and realizing that this is what I am scared of and this is how I feel. How do you counteract yourself when deep down, your soul feels like it is fighting for its very existence? Realizing this explains so much about why I would self-sabotage anytime I was on a healthy streak.
My psyche or subconscious or whatever the psychological words are (even my very soul) was fighting for its life because I felt like I was killing the very essence of me if I lost the weight. This is quite a powerful thing to work against. At least, I am finally aware of this fact now. I imagine that it is very hard to fight demons that you can't see. At least now, my biggest demon is out in the light where I can begin to slay it.
The mind is a very powerful thing, and it is funny how memories work. I always remembered myself as this horrifically obese child. It seemed that way in my mind. I started looking back on old photos from my childhood and guess what? I look like a normal, healthy, and happy child. Why did I have it in my head that I was ALWAYS fat? Was I a 30-lb newborn? No. I'm pretty sure I was weight 7 lbs and 2 oz at birth. Here's a picture of me from my youth:
I'm cramming cereal in my mouth (looks like Lucky Charms from the picture), but nowhere is the fat little chubby monster that I thought I was. So much of my life involves the mingling of shame and food and I'm still trying to figure out why that is. However, I have to realize that "fat girl" is not my identity. I am so much more than that. Here is a picture of 8th grade Kaycee:
I remember being so cognizant of my weight and so self-conscious of my c-cup boobs. I hated my body. So many of my diary entries from middle school and high school were filled with self-loathing and shame. I wish so much to cradle that Kaycee and let her know that everything will be okay. I want to tell her that she is kind, smart, funny, and strong. I want to tell her that it doesn't matter what others think; she is beautiful! I want to tell her that she is so much more than the numbers. That she will grow up to be a class valedictorian, that she will graduate from college and law school with honors and will make a fine lawyer. Even more so, I want to tell her that she will forgive herself and her body one day.
All the days filled with anguish and disgust aren't worth it. She will fall in love. She will break hearts and get her heart broken. I want to tell her that she lives and will continue to live an amazing life and have abounding adventures. Most of all, I want to tell her that I love her unconditionally because I finally do. I'm so sorry to the past Kaycee who never got my unconditional love. Please know that I will never let you feel that way again. I was not the fat girl. I am not the fat girl. You are not the fat girl.
This is a post by PumpUp member @k_c, a vivacious blogger based in Central Arkansas. Learn more about her through her blog: voluptuousmisadventures.com
March to your dream and bring others up along the way! Congratulate PumpUp member @robynwhite for all she achieved! Last week, Robyn shared with the PumpUp community hat she was able to wear a dress confidently for the first time within the past 3 years. She has been documenting her transformation between 2013 and 2015.
"Looking at these pictures make me want to scream with happiness," she professed. "These past months have been so hard for me: I've cried and put myself down about how I looked, but I turned it around! I wore a dress for the first time in 3 years! I am in love with this dress and I'm falling in love with my body." These changes manifested themselves after Robyn adopted a healthier diet. She is far more confident than she has ever been before. With the help of the PumpUp community, Robyn is learning to focus on how far she has come, rather than on how far she has to go. Keep her pumped!
"I almost can't believe it's me posting this picture! Mostly because I'm not perfect, and I'm okay with that. Which I never thought I would be. Focusing on small goals and learning to love myself for who I am are the 2 main things keeping me motivated, and those two things are mainly down to joining PumpUp. Trust the process and #MarchToYourDream." PumpUp member Silviamcd shines as our Spotlight Saturday member. She inspires the PumpUp community on a daily basis with posts of her progress and healthy eating. Keep her pumped as she strives to reach all of her goals. Open the app to cheer her on!
It’s easy to forget how difficult it is to love oneself. The statistics on the State of Self Esteem paint a sombre portrait: 7 in 10 girls believe that they are inadequate in some capacity, be it through their relationships with others, their academic performance, or their appearance. We’re surrounded by images of unrealistic beauty everywhere we go: polished and filtered Instagram images that show us what we don’t have (thigh gap, we’re looking at you) and who we could never measure up to be (are we ever going to be as funny or as Twitter-savvy as the enigmatic Retta? No).
Remember: you have as many hours in a day as Beyoncé, and even she can’t escape the tyranny of Photoshop. Lines of wisdom and age etched across one of the most celebrated names of the 21st century are smoothed away to oblivion with the meticulous and instantaneous click of a mouse.
It seems like there’s an app for everything. But there isn’t an app that will teach you how to love yourself. Luckily, you can teach yourself how to love yourself. No app. No magic wand. The only thing and person you need is you.
If Valentine’s Day is about celebrating the people you love, why shouldn’t Valentine’s Day celebrate you? Be your own cupid and send a relevant, hilarious love letter to yourself from the bottom of your heart. These pumpupapp cards are an amazing way to start.
You deserve all of the cute doodles and positive affirmations in the world. You’re hot stuff, flaws and all (think Sriracha hot, and multiply that by 100). You’re absolutely amazing, at any and every size. Love your imperfections before you love your perfections. Love yourself.
This is a post by PumpUp member @k_c, a vivacious blogger based in Central Arkansas. Learn more about her through her blog: voluptuousmisadventures.com
I read an article today that really hit me. It really encapsulated the changing mental focus that I am working on.
"The deprivation diet - characterized by ‘just-until-I-lose-this-weight’ thinking - is another enemy of weight loss. It causes us to alternate between extremes of ‘on diet’ and ‘off diet’ behaviour."
Um, hello! I am so guilty of this. I put so much faith in being thin. Everything would work out, if I was thin. My credit card debt would disappear, if I was thin. I’d meet the love of my life, once I got thin. I just had to eat this cardboard, until I got thin. It was a VERY dangerous mental cycle for me. No wonder it never worked. When I had this mentality, I would constantly put up roadblocks to getting fit because I loathed my body and didn’t truly love who I am. Once I forgave myself and stopped trying to find fault in who I was, I began to start the true journey of being my best self.
I’ve always had a decent support system around me. For the most part, my friends and family are very encouraging and express the utmost faith in me. What I’ve come to realize is the most critical element was missing from my support system: self-support. Looking back on all my past attempts at weight loss or getting healthy, I don’t think that I ever truly believed in myself. How could I do anything but fail when I set myself up for failure every time?
Love for ourselves and others is so essential in this healthy journey. I recently read a line that said, “You can’t hate yourself healthy.” I took this to mean that you can’t bully yourself into getting healthy. I was so guilty of saying,” Geez Kaycee, you are such a fat lose. Why can’t you just stick to this diet?” I would never talk to someone that way, so why would I speak to myself that way?
It has become so important to nurture and cherish my body for the marvel that it is. Because I love myself, I am going to do fun, physical activities to stay fit and feel young. Because I love myself, I am going to nourish my body with clean, healthy foods (most of the time). Being healthy is not just in the physical. It is so important to work on mental health and having a positive self-image. Me and my body are not enemies and the sooner I stop thinking that, the sooner we can work together to become one lean, mean, healthy-awesome machine.
"All that we are is the result of what we have thought. The mind is everything. What we think, we become." - Buddha.
Think something positive about yourself today. For me, life is just better when you love yourself. We fight so many battles every day. Why make yourself one of those battles?
If you’re ever in need of a friend to pick you up on days when you just can’t even bear the thought of sticking to your health and fitness goals, @Lorrin is your girl. She’s been an active PumpUp member since June 2014 and has truly been inspiring the community with her journey towards self-love. “My most favourite thing is when people comment on my pictures saying, ‘Because of you, I worked out today,” she gushed. “It gives me an extra push to work out even if I’m not feeling up to it. It’s rare, but it does happen. I’m only human.”It took quite some time for Lorrin to attain the self-confidence that she has now. “Battling with the girl in the mirror was a huge one at first: taking ‘before’ pictures almost sent me into a sobbing fit every time I tried to take them. I hadn’t realized that I let myself go,” she bravely shared. “I stopped loving myself and that’s what hurt the most.” The day that she stopped feeling bad about herself was the day that she decided to do something about it. “I still have moments when I don’t feel 100% confident, but every day it gets easier and easier to see my body changing,” she added. “When I say that I love myself, it’s 100% true. It’s something that I never could have honestly said before. Loving my body, realizing my worth, and seeing positivity in every situation are the best obstacles I’ve overcome. They have changed my life for the better and being happy isn’t something I have to work for anymore.”
Before Lorrin joined PumpUp, healthy eating was something that she truly grappled with. “I love sweets and junk food a little bit too much, but PumpUp definitely pushed me to get my eating and exercise habits on the right track,” she explained. Now, she’s more determined than ever to stick to her goals and regularly turns to PumpUp for her daily dose of inspiration. “The community provides me with endless motivation,” she mentioned. “PumpUp has kept me on a pretty constant routine of working out 5-6 days a week and eating healthy meals throughout the day. I really got into smoothies last summer from seeing the posts on PumpUp, and I love them!”
Before 2015 is over, Lorrin aspires to be able to squat 200 lbs: the equivalent of one large red kangaroo! She reaches for the stars, and there isn’t anything that’s stopping her. “I’m at 105 lbs on the squat rack right now and I know with perseverance and the support from my PumpUp family that I can get there before the year is over,” she explained. Morning workouts have particularly helped Lorrin to stay committed to her goal in the midst of her hectic school schedule. “Working out in the morning really makes my days better,” she professed. “I’m more focused and determined to be productive.” Her best advice for those looking to achieve their ultimate resolutions for the year is to take small steps each week. “Progress is progress no matter how small,” she counselled. “Any movement toward your goals is amazing.”
Lorrin is first and foremost a motivator in every sense of the word. Having struggled with weight and self-confidence issues her entire life, she strives to remind every single person on PumpUp that they are incredible, even if they don’t see it themselves. “I love hearing that I motivate people because that’s all I’ve ever wanted to do,” she confessed. “The first time I lost weight was in high school and I had no motivation: it sucked. I felt so alone and it was hard to keep it up. PumpUp has completely changed that for me and I hope everyone knows that I am always available for support. I love this app more than anything and can never explain how it has changed my life.”
Although several people have been crucial motivators for Lorrin herself, PumpUp members @limitlesstyle and @jordanbutters have both been exceptionally supportive of her. “They offer comments on almost everything that I post,” she elaborated. “I have so many amazing people I’d like to mention but I’d hate to leave anybody out, so I just hope that everyone knows that if they have offered me support in any way, it has helped me. It has helped me more than I could ever explain. I truly love everyone on this app.”
Lorrin’s favourite eats
“My favorite snack is probably apples with peanut butter, it fills me up and it’s delicious! My favorite meal is Lasagna, I eat it very rarely now but it’s still my favorite. And my favorite drink is water, I’m like a camel, I drink all day everyday, you’ll never find me without my lime green water bottle.”
“Let your pain push you to greatness.” It’s in my bio on PumpUp and I couldn’t agree with it more. Every time I feel like giving up, those words pop into my mind and remind me that it’ll all be worth it in the end.
Favourite exercise moves
“Squats, straight leg deadlifts and chest flys. I try to train legs 2 times a week along with arms, and do cardio twice a week as well.”
Fun Fact About Lorrin
“My birthday is leap day (Feb, 29th)! I’ve never met anyone else with the same birthday as me.”
Lorrin is the queen of hair buns (and puns!). You can’t miss her on the pumpupapp! Keep Lorrin pumped @lorrin, she’ll be there to support you every step of the way!
So you’re working out. There are all of these hashtags to accompany this (#FitFam, #FlexFriday, #SquatNation, to name a few). But we work out…to what end? To look good, right?
Work out to let your outside match the beautiful person you are on the inside. Be mindful about what you eat because it has long term effects on your health, and not solely because you want to look good this summer.
Do this for you because you deserve tolook AMAZING. Do this because you deserve a happy and healthy life. The fact is that when you were fat or extremely slender your whole life and you start to achieve your ideal body weight; you begin to love the attention you receive and the hype gets to you; that’s human nature. Do not do this for the hype – itain’t worth it!
We often work out for all the wrong reasons and in turn we achieve short-term goals; or maybe we initially worked out for the right reasons but along the way - somewhere between the compliments, the lingering glances and the followers we gained on the pumpupapp - we lost sight of the true vision – to be healthy and happy. That’s fine. That’s why I’m here, to help you to change your thought process!
Now don’t get me wrong….
“Humility is not thinking less of yourself, it’s thinking of yourself less.” - Rick Warren
I’ve been there - fat, sad and alone. It took me awhile to live up to my own advice. It took me awhile to remove the veil from my eyes so that I could see that I was not being healthy but I was destroying myself physically and mentally and allowing others to destroy me mentally as well. When I realized that I was enough, I came to the conclusion that I should love myself enough to know that I can workout at my own pace and achieve my goals just for me – because I am enough.
Achieve Self-Love then Spread Love…
- Abigail Brady
Eating and drinking
Hi PumpUp fam! Since we are talking about being positive throughout the month of December (and the months thereafter), I’ll be sharing about the negative thoughts I had during my weight-loss and fitness journey and how I managed to overcome them. These three pointers will absolutely help you to transform negativity into positivity (and trust me, I speak from experience).
When I first started my weight-loss journey, I used to be very insecure about my physical appearance. I was inundated with pictures of ‘hot’ and skinny girls on Instagram, on blogs, and on all other social media platforms, and this made me feel much worse. I would compare myself to them. I would constantly ask myself why I didn’t have a body like theirs. Sometimes, I was even so depressed that I skipped my meals.
One day, I decided that instead of dreaming about the body that I always wanted to have, my time was much better spent focusing on my own fitness journey. Instead of comparing myself to others, I told myself that since they could do it, I could do it too. This motivates me even till now and I always remind myself about it. I can’t stress this enough: STOP COMPARING YOURSELF! Love your own body and start doing something about it instead!
During a weight-loss/ fitness journey, there are moments when we think about of giving up. It could happen when we’re running, working out, or even during simple acts such as when we feel guilty about eating unhealthy food. I personally found myself wanting to give up whenever I was running. My thoughts played out like this: “I didn’t have enough sleep, so I should just stop here. I don’t think I could do it anymore.”
Want to kill those negative thoughts? Don’t give into them. Once these thoughts occur, do not stop what you are doing. Tell yourself that these are all excuses and you should not put a limit to yourself. I often found the phrase “mind over body” true, and it really does push myself to strive for my best potential. After all your hard work, you will definitely feel a great sense of accomplishment! The key here is to really believe in yourself and affirm that you can. You definitely can overcome these negative thoughts and push yourself for the best.
Lastly, the most important element of any fitness or weight-loss journey is to be patient. We often tend to expect results after putting in minimal effort or we often give up after we see little or no results. During this journey, we need to learn to be patient. At certain times, I get upset by the fact that my weight increased instead of dropping; or that my abs were not as defined as the day before.
It is crucial that we should not give up at this moment and we have to keep reminding ourselves that we should be patient. Health and fitness is not about a matter of time it takes to achieve a goal, but about the process or progress it takes to get us there. When we continue to believe in what we are doing and persevere, we will eventually achieve our goals.
I hope that you all will find these tips useful and that you will become more positive during your fitness / weight-loss journey!
If PumpUp were to have an award for Spreading Positivity all December, Ella (@ella_emilie) would absolutely be a front-runner. She has made so much progress with the help of PumpUp over the past 8 months! Not only has Ella overcome stress from school with the help of health and fitness, she’s having better control over binge eating and has the most inspirational advice to share—ever.
The humdrum of Ella’s routine as a hardworking student almost got the best of her before she decided to join the PumpUp community 8 months ago. “My days felt meaningless and unfulfilling as I’d spend them in front of a computer screen or notebook, reading the same line over and over again,” she elaborated. “I found that my eating habits began to worsen and I never had enough energy to make it through the day.”
Ella’s diet mimicked that of a typical ‘teenage diet’, which she describes as one in which a person eats and does whatever they want without a second thought. “I suffer with binge eating. When I start I simply cannot stop and I’d eat an entire packet of something simply because it was there,” she bravely confessed. What’s more, Ella’s sweet tooth proved to be her downfall when it came to snacking. Although she played soccer on a weekly basis since she was 8 years old, Ella admitted that she never truly felt fit and healthy. “I found myself losing control of my fitness more and more as the years progressed, as school became a massive burden that took up the majority of my time and energy,” she lamented. “It was an unfulfilling existence that never seemed to make me truly happy.”
One fateful day, when Ella stumbled upon one of Carly Rowena’s videos that mentioned PumpUp, she decided to download the app to embark on a new journey. “From that point on, my lifestyle began to change…for the better!” she enthused. “PumpUp has helped me understand the wonderful benefits of exercise and that is what has changed my perceptions about a healthy lifestyle. I exercise because I want to and because my body tells me I need to, not as a burden nor as a chore. Throughout all of my exam blocks from that point on, I was able to keep my nerves under control and keep by body fit and healthy thanks to the help of PumpUp.” The more that Ella began to put time and effort into appreciating and taking care of her body, the more she felt determined not to waste away her hard work and to make healthier options for a change. “Don’t get me wrong, I don’t by any means eat what others would consider to be a ‘healthy diet’, however I do my best to make better choices that I believe wouldn’t undermine the impact of my workouts.”
Her best advice other members looking to lead a healthy and more active life is to simply be themselves. “As cliché and obvious as that sounds, there is simply no point in trying to be something or someone you’re not because it’s just never going to happen,” she mused. “We all have unique qualities, and although fitness inspiration images will drive our determination, don’t let them define your determination.” Though Ella loves browsing through fitness inspiration pictures and can’t get enough of affirming and positive quotes, she knows that comparison is the thief of joy—she can only be the best version of herself. “As long as you’re working your absolute hardest, then that is all anyone can ever ask of you,” she said.
As Ella continues her journey with PumpUp, she strives to maintain a healthier lifestyle. “I have struggled with my weight for as long as I can remember. My thighs have been my biggest point of anguish,” she confirmed. “I’ve tried my best to have a more positive attitude toward my body and fitness in general.”
In her estimation, Ella’s most outstanding accomplishment throughout her PumpUp journey is her experience meeting incredible people in the community. “Although some may find it strange that I feel so connected to people that I’ve never met before, I can honestly say that PumpUp has opened my eyes to wonderful people in this world,” she gushed. “People who support and motivate others with the kindest intentions. I love supporting and being supported throughout all my highs and my lows. My PumpUp fam is always there, eager to help me through any situation, and for that I am incredibly thankful.”
In addition to overcoming the hardships she experienced with school, Ella transcended the negativity from petty comments she would receive from other people. “Having found myself in terms of fitness and having achieved many of my goals, I believe I have in fact come out on top,” she affirmed. ‘I have never been the loud mouthed girl, but rather the quiet achiever. To finally gain recognition for my personal successes honestly feels incredible.” She’s achieved all of the goals she set out to accomplish in her PumpUp biography: “I’m doing it for the ‘damn, she got hot’ this summer. I’m doing it because they don’t think I can. I’m doing it for me. All of these goals are ones that I feel I have achieved.”
Ella’s biggest motivation comes from her PumpUp family—regardless of age, shape, size, or country. “I absolutely love observing and acknowledging the progress of such incredible women who inspire me on a daily basis,” she gleamed. “I am so honoured to be part of a community that glorifies and supports anyone and everyone who is willing to better themselves. In particular, my girls: @freakindee, @_harleyjade_, @carmony, @prescilladeschenes, @firandfabmary, @kathreena, and so many more may be considered my key sources of motivation.”
Ella’s favourite snack
“I haven’t been much of a cook as of late, but in the summer I’m in love with frozen grapes and iced lemon & mint water/crushes.”
““Push yourself because no one else is going to do it for you” — because the only person who can change your life for better or worse is YOU.’ This is something I’ve come to learn recently and as difficult and confronting as it may be, it’s the harsh reality of life that we all need to come to terms with. We are responsible for our actions, our attitudes and for ourselves.”
Favourite PumpUp Routine
“I love the Total Ripper PumpUp workout and enjoy variations of it according to my time limitations. I thoroughly enjoy PumpUp’s tailored workouts that allow me to personalize and target certain aspects of my body, making it a more enjoyable experience.”
More about Ella
“I love skiing, even though there isn’t a lot of quality snow here in Australia and have done so for about ten year now. I have been skiing in America which was fantastic and will be returning there in January 2015. I hope to one day ski in Europe and Japan in order to get some worldly experiences.”
Learn more about Ella through her blog:
It would be an understatement to say that PumpUp member @katieeliza_ has been through a lot! “Confidence is a new thing to me and I wish I could help grant everyone with even just a little bit of it!” shared Katie. “I could only imagine where I would be or who I would have become if I’d just learned to believe in myself sooner.” After she gained weight in the years following high school, Katie recovered from an eating disorder and now lives an active lifestyle with the help and support of PumpUp!
Katie has been on PumpUp for almost a year—and look how far she’s come! “I was starting to make a change in my lifestyle and I figured that using the app would be a good way to help me get started and keep track of my progress,” she exclaimed. Not only has Katie been consistent about updating the PumpUp community about her transformation, she gives back unwavering support to other members as well.
Prior to PumpUp, Katie’s lifestyle was quite different. “It was pretty all over the place,” she explains. “I was athletic when I was younger and I used to eat a lot of junk without a second thought. After high school my metabolism hit a brick wall and I started gaining weight. I had no idea what to do with myself.”
It was difficult for Katie to cope with the physiological changes brought on by her weight gain. “I was pretty depressed about my body image and I struggled with losing weight in extremely unhealthy ways,” she revealed. “Living [with an eating disorder] left me miserable and I felt too weak to do even the simplest of daily tasks.” Nevertheless, Katie bravely recovered from her eating disorder, put weight back on, but began to feel sluggish all the time. “I knew it wasn’t the way that a normal person in their twenties should be feeling,” she recalled.
Now a self-professed gym-junkie, Katie wouldn’t trade her active lifestyle for the world. “If you had ever told the old me that I’d be a gym junkie, I would have probably laughed in your face!” she gleamed. “But look at me now!” Since she joined PumpUp, Katie eats clean most of the time and eats more frequently than she ever has before. “I push for 5 small meals a day. But every once in awhile I remember how much I love cookies…I’m a sucker for a chocolate chip cookie,” nodded Katie. She also manages to work out 5-6 days a week, despite her hectic schedule. “I wouldn’t have it any other way,” she affirmed.
She counsels other PumpUp members to find motivation from within his or herself. “Hold on to that motivation for dear life,” she urged. “You are so beautiful and so worth working for! Don’t let anyone tell you that you can’t do anything.” Recognizing personal victories is an important part of the process for Katie. “Love yourself through all the successes and failures of your journey! You will fall, but that only makes victory that much sweeter when it’s accomplished,” she continued. Moving forward, Katie aspires to help other people find comfort in their own skin, just like she found comfort in hers.
Katie’s biggest motivation is her best friend Shayler (@shaysymm on PumpUp). “She really helped me kick my butt into gear!” said Katie. “She’s always been here to help guide me, she’s a beast!”
“I’ll totally crumble for a gooey chocolate chip cookie with a tall glass of fat free milk. But besides that, I love steamed squash so much.”
”We have to continually be jumping off cliffs and developing our wings on the way down.”- Kurt Vonnegut
“I love weightlifting!”
Fun Facts about Katie
“I’m a Gemini, so I’m kind of a jack of all trades! I really enjoy doing just about anything new.”
Find Katie on PumpUp and Instagram @KatieEliza_ to keep her pumped!