An ounce of discouragement can set anybody back further than they'd expect. "I've always been healthy and exercised regularly, but I went through a tough time before I joined PumpUp due to health problems," lamented PumpUp member @graciefit14. "This discouraged me a lot and took my mind away from what I loved the most, which was the gym." Though Grace maintained a gluten-free diet and alternated between either weight-lifting or yoga, she ended up bingeing on her food. Before PumpUp, Grace stood at her heaviest: 170 lbs. "I would work out 6 times a week for at least 2 hours, and I was still gaining weight," said Grace. One fateful afternoon in September 2014, Grace discovered the PumpUp community through an Instagram post. It hit her: she realized that she had no motivation to be healthier. "It was a sign," she insisted. "I instantly downloaded it and started to see how much motivation I could receive from real people. They weren't fitness models or part of another weight loss commercial. The people on PumpUp are real people in a community who are getting healthy together."
Not only does Grace feel healthier since she joined the PumpUp community, she also feels more knowledgeable. "My lifestyle with PumpUp is much more fulfilling," she elaborated. "I eat healthy for at least 90% of my day, count my macros, and work out 4x a week. I've lost 15 lbs since I began my journey on the app." Though Grace decreased the frequency of her workouts, her attitude towards exercise is much more positive. "I actually want to go to the gym now that I only go 3-4 times a week, in comparison to the 6-7 times that I used to," she confirmed. "I feel healthier and I love gaining knowledge and support from all the other PumpUp members."
Grace dealt with high anxiety, had gallbladder removal surgery in October 2014, and has been overcoming chronic nausea for almost one year. "This affects me during strenuous workouts," she said solemnly. "I always tell myself to quit and go home, but if I finish my workout, it makes me feel stronger than I was before." Not only did support and encouragement from the PumpUp community motivate Grace to adopt healthier and more moderate eating habits, her surgery also impacted the composition of her diet. "It made me realize how to eat correctly," she explained. "I consume less fat and am unable to eat greasy food."
Grace urges those looking to live a healthy lifestyle to stop depending on the opinions of others. "I personally went through the struggle of trying to hide that I was eating healthy because others were constantly judging my decisions," she shared. "This especially happened when I would visit friends at college and didn’t want to drink or go out to McDonalds." Peer pressure caused grace to give in to eating junk food, and she felt awful afterwards. Because she wasn't surrounded by a positive environment of motivating people on the PumpUp community, she didn't feel safe to share about her health-related accomplishments. "Since I joined the PumpUp community, I feel proud to feed my body with good nutrients and the occasional chocolate bar," she said positively. "I even got my family to begin tracking their macros and cut back on their sodium and sugar intake."
Grace's Hopes for the Future
What I hope to accomplish while using Pump Up is to run a 10k and also inspire others to better themselves. I am currently studying to become a Registered Dietitian, but before I get my degree, I’m hoping to get my fitness nutrition certification and work in a gym. I look up to a woman named Amber Orton a lot! I began following her Instagram about 2 years ago and she tells the truth about the fitness industry. She eats unhealthy when she has cravings, and also informs others that the competition body isn’t sustainable over long periods of time. Some people think that people who compete have that body all year round but they get “soft” too and gain body fat. She also stresses a lot that everyone has different body structures and mechanical make ups. Not all exercises work for everyone, which is something I had to learn when I saw others improving more quickly than I was.
To stay healthy, I hired a trainer and do weightlifting with him 2 days a week. We do heavy days, then a cardio/ circuit day. He also helps me to keep a healthy diet and track my macros. I also do yoga once a day with at least 1 other day of lifting/ cardio mixed in there for a total of 4 days of exercise. I am a true believer that one should begin in the kitchen, then move onto the gym. You cannot get your dream body while eating bad foods. If you work out then eat pizza, there’s no point.
More about Grace
I am planning a trip to New Zealand for next winter. I plan to live on the South Island and travel for a month enjoying the beaches and mountains. I love the outdoors and am excited for this new adventure. May even end up moving there, who knows.
Keep Grace pumped! Cheer Grace on as she maintains her healthy habits! Have words of encouragement for Grace? Leave a note in the comments below!