Viewing entries tagged
spotlight series

Katelyn's Transformation as a First Time Bikini Competitor

Katelyn's Transformation as a First Time Bikini Competitor

Faced with a full-time course load and two jobs, Katelyn had a difficult time prioritizing her health.   "I ate out often, and it wasn't fast food necessarily, but I rarely ate home-cooked meals," she remembered. "I always said to myself, 'On Monday, I am going to start eating healthy and going to the gym." Much to Katelyn's chagrin, 'Monday' would turn into the next week, and then the next month.  "Now that I use PumpUp and avidly go to the gym, my lifestyle has changed completely," she insisted.

How Cara Overcame Her Struggle With Food Guilt - PumpUp Success Stories

How Cara Overcame Her Struggle With Food Guilt - PumpUp Success Stories

"The majority of my posts on PumpUp are aimed at being body positive because it is important for me to see myself as beautiful. It is so important to me that other men and women can look at themselves and stop nit-picking long enough to realize how truly blessed they are. PumpUp has been a great support for me in my journey to having a positive body image."

How Marita Reclaimed Her Health After an Ankle Injury

How Marita Reclaimed Her Health After an Ankle Injury

"I've always been 'The Fat One'," recalled Marita. "I was bullied when I was younger and I started dieting when I was 12 years old. I've never been quite happy with myself, except from 2011-2012. I was what I considered to be a healthy weight, and I was happy with my body." After an ankle surgery made exercising nearly impossible for Marita, she fell into a deep depression because of all the weight she gained

How Adeliza Escaped Colon Cancer and Changed Her Life

How Adeliza Escaped Colon Cancer and Changed Her Life

In January 2015, Adeliza's doctor informed her that she was on track to developing colon cancer. "At the age of 24, nobody wants to hear that," she remembered. "I had stomach pains and I wasn't digesting everything properly." From that point onward, Adeliza decided to change her habits for the better. She abandoned her former lifestyle, which consisted of little to no exercise and a diet filled with fried foods. Here's how she did it.

Rachel's Incredible 70-lb. Transformation

Rachel's Incredible 70-lb. Transformation

Nobody's transformation story is ever completely straightforward. As a child, Rachel was constantly in and out of of the hospital because she had kidney disease. By the time she was nearly four years old, she already had 8 surgeries - one of which removed her left kidney. "My right kidney had to do the job of two kidneys, which caused [its] protective layer to be stretched thin," she recounted. "Because of this, the doctor told my parents that I should never play any sports or do anything that could cause me to fall on my right side."

From Skinny to Strong : Melanie's Journey To The Stage

From Skinny to Strong : Melanie's Journey To The Stage

 As a former ballerina, Melanie used to obsess over her weight and body image. Training for a figure competition changed that for her. "I used to weigh around 90-95 pounds (BMI around 17-17.5), which is unhealthy," she admitted. "I'm a perfectionist, so I wanted to control everything. I had a hard time dealing with weight gain. When I met my current boyfriend, he helped me get through that fear and accept weight gain." Now, Melanie weighs a healthy 115 lbs and feels more comfortable in her own skin than ever before.

How Amanda Triumphed Over Anorexia, Bulimia, and Menière's Disease

How Amanda Triumphed Over Anorexia, Bulimia, and Menière's Disease

For years, Amanda had a difficult time thinking about food as fuel. She battled with both anorexia and bulimia at the same time. "I had a surgery, I was just really down about myself, and I took it out on my body," she recalled. "Once I started eating and it all became bingeing, I knew I had to make a change. That was when I really got into working out." It has been two and a half years since Amanda healed from her eating disorders. Moderation was the key to her success. 

Marissa's Journey to Greater Self-Confidence - PumpUp Success Stories

Marissa's Journey to Greater Self-Confidence - PumpUp Success Stories

Fast food used to be Marissa's ultimate vice. The more she consumed it, the heavier she became. "I gained 40 pounds in two years," she recalled. "I didn't go to the gym at all either. [Somebody on YouTube] mentioned PumpUp. I decided to check it out and fell in love." Marissa's sedentary ways changed when she joined PumpUp in August 2014. With the help of the PumpUp community, she resolved to live a healthier and more active lifestyle. Now, Marissa cooks most of her own meals rather than opting for takeout food. "I eat mostly chicken breast, veggies, and brown rice," she said proudly. "Once in a while, I may have a cheat meal. A girl's gotta have burgers and fries sometimes!" What's more, Marissa makes it a point to exercise at least once a day. Her hard work has paid off - Marissa lost 20 lbs since she joined PumpUp. "I am just living my life and along the way, if I am inspiring and changing lives, that's amazing," she insisted. "So many people inspire me on PumpUp. I have a great support system and that's what keeps me going. I would not have gone this far if it wasn't for this app. I know that for a fact."

Weight aside, Marissa's confidence has taken the biggest turn. "I'm 28 years old and it has taken a very long time to get comfortable with myself," she revealed. "Now, I am falling in love with the person I am growing into. Not only am I changing physically, but mentally and spiritually. I have to give props to specific PumpUp members:  @gtbadams and @tweetii are always motivating me and are big inspirations to me."

Marissa's Biggest Obstacle 

Just lack of confidence mentally, I lost a lot of friends and I refused to get into a serious relationship because I lacked so much confidence. I am reading help books and rediscovering the things I want out of my life and it's really helping me to focus on myself.

Marissa's Workouts

I do 40 mins of cardio in addition to whichever muscle group I'm focused on, be it arms, legs, or glutes.

Marissa's Best Advice

Consistency, hard work , and determination is key. No matter how many times you fall get back up, it's going to be hard and you will want to give up but next year you will be proud that you started and what you accomplished." You only fail when you stop trying."

Marissa's Favorite Recipe

Silk milk+ whey chocolate protein powder + Herbalife dutch chocolate = double chocolate shake(my addiction).

More about Marissa

I have never worn a 2 piece bikini or bathing suit (it's my 2016 goal). I wrote story that inspired a children's book called Little Red Envelopes. It is in schools throughout Florida.

Keep Marissa pumped! Find her on PumpUp @itsrissabae and leave positive words of encouragement for her in the comments below. 

How Charlotte Lost 60 lbs. & Got Rid of Chronic Back Pain

How Charlotte Lost 60 lbs. & Got Rid of Chronic Back Pain

As a stay-at-home mother, excuses came pretty easily for Charlotte. She used to gorge on unhealthy snacks and avoided exercising at all cost. "My life is pretty busy with family and house duties, [being] a stay-at-home mom who home-schools my 4 children under [the age of] 6," Charlotte admitted. "I don’t even know my highest weight because I was too ashamed to weigh myself when I first started out." 

How Simon Lost 50 lbs. and Found Motivation to be Healthy

How Simon Lost 50 lbs. and Found Motivation to be Healthy

It was Simon's ambition to run five kilometres without stopping. Though Simon already enlisted the help of a Couch to 5K program, he also needed some encouragement along the way. "I looked for a fitness app to give me tips and found PumpUp," he shared. "The likes and comments give you a great feeling of achievement, which gives you the encouragement to carry on."  

Julie's 70-lb. transformation is about more than weight loss

Julie's 70-lb. transformation is about more than weight loss

Anxiety negatively impacted Julie's life, to the point where her physical health was in danger. "I've always had bad anxiety ever since I was little," she admitted."I think it started when my grandfather passed away when I was 5 years old." Julie hardly ever slept and ate large portions of comfort food to cope with the emotional turmoil that stirred inside of her.  "[The eating], combined with not caring for myself got me to my highest weight of 361 lbs," she stated. 

Kristin's 62-lb. transformation will amaze you - PumpUp Success Stories

Kristin's 62-lb. transformation will amaze you - PumpUp Success Stories

Screen-Shot-2015-10-11-at-8.53.41-AM.png

Kristin weighed heavier than ever in 2014. She tipped the scale at 230 lbs, wore double extra-large shirts, and slipped into size 20 pants. She would binge eat after school to deal with the hurtful comments that other classmates made about her weight. "On December 30, 2014, I vowed to make a complete lifestyle change," she recalled. "I was always an emotional eater and I was dealing with depression for 2 years. As I continued to gain weight, I was bullied and harassed more by the guys at my school. I was miserable." In January 2015, Kristin joined PumpUp in search of support. "When I joined, I immediately felt a sense of family," she remarked. "Everyone on the app is so uplifting, encouraging, and positive. I enjoyed seeing everyone else's progress and I wanted to show mine and tell my story." Kristin couldn't imagine how much encouragement she would receive by sharing one simple photo. " In the beginning, I didn't think anyone would care about my progress because it was very small and didn't seem important," she shared. "However, even when I would share about a 30 minute workout, I would immediately get a few likes and even a comment from somebody [who told me] to keep going. Every time I posted my everyday workouts or pictures, there was always someone encouraging me and pushing me to never give up. I was inspired."

Kristin's 60-lb. transformation will amaze you // The PumpUp Blog

Since Kristin joined PumpUp, she lost 62 pounds. "Before PumpUp, I ate whatever I wanted to," she elaborated. "My diet now is 100% different. I [maintain] a paleo diet and drink mostly water.  I still have another 20 lbs to go [until I reach my goal weight]. My biggest source of motivation is seeing people on PumpUp just trying to push themselves every day. They're striving to be better - because that is all I'm trying to do too."

Kristin's Best Advice

Be your own motivation. Don't lose weight because some low-life person called you fat. Don't lose weight for attention or for love . Do it because you love yourself and because you want what is best for you.

Kristin's 60-lb. transformation will amaze you // The PumpUp Blog

Kristin's Workout Routine I love switching up my workout routine. I actually lost weight without ever setting foot in a gym. All my workouts are at home workouts. I really love watching YouTube videos to get ideas for workouts. But I am very simple most of the time. I am a treadmill kind of girl.

Kristin's 60-lb. transformation will amaze you // The PumpUp Blog

More about Kristin I have had 9 surgeries in my lifetime. All before the age of 10. I was born with a rare birthmark that could of become cancerous. I basically grew up in hospitals and got used to them. I also love to sing and am the only singer in my family. I love everything about fall and I am a cat lover.

Keep Kristin pumped! Follow her journey on PumpUp @kristinfitness95! Leave positive words of encouragement for her down below.

How Trenton Overcame Bullying and Found Purpose

How Trenton Overcame Bullying and Found Purpose

As an overweight child, Trenton was a victim of bullying and the subject of jokes. "It started at the age of 10— I didn't notice it at the time," he recalled. "I didn't care about how I looked. I was just a kid. As I got older, the bullying got worse and I kept getting bigger." The constant derision and laughter about Trenton's weight began to take its toll. "I was a freshman in high school and I was crying myself to sleep at night," he admitted. "My dad got me into fitness and gave me the tools that I needed to lose weight and lead a happier and healthier lifestyle."

Why Sara finally feels confident in a bathing suit

Why Sara finally feels confident in a bathing suit

Sara was constantly immersed in an atmosphere of negativity. This stifled her from achieving her health and fitness goals. "I put on a fake smile and pretended that I didn't hear the laughs," she recalled. "I joined PumpUp at 186 lbs. [Though I experienced] a lot of ups and downs, I never gave up. I kept going, and it's only because of the endless support that PumpUp gave me. 

What happened when Alyssa found the positivity she needed - PumpUp Success Stories

What happened when Alyssa found the positivity she needed - PumpUp Success Stories

Screenshot_2015-05-20-13-21-07.jpg

PumpUp member @alyssa_a_ford needed a major dose of positivity in her life when she joined the app in November 2014. "I started to use PumpUp because it is such a positive place to be. It's an environment that is inspiring and it is something that I've always wanted to be a part of," she said gleefully. Alyssa wanted a rapid departure from the habits that she adopted in her younger years. "We ate whatever we wanted...all the junk food and soda," recalled Alyssa. "I ate like a piglet. Though my family grew to be more health-conscious, I only exercised because I was enrolled in sports. I wasn't very competitive at them. Besides walking around, I didn't do much. I didn't really care before."  What happened when Alyssa found the positivity she needed | PumpUp Success Stories

Once Alyssa joined the PumpUp community, she gained the motivation that she needed to push her limits as far as exercise was concerned. "Everyone on PumpUp is so nice, helpful and inspiring," she mused. "It's somewhere that anybody can go to if they need motivation. It's amazing what we can do if we work together." Alyssa indeed worked together with the PumpUp community to achieve all sorts of health and fitness goals. She became much more health-conscious and fell in love with running. Not only does she strive to visit the gym every day for at least 45 minutes, Alyssa began to incorporate short runs after her workouts. "I accomplished quite a lot on PumpUp. I lost 25 pounds and began to love my body and treat it the way it should be treated," she shared. "I have gained confidence, which I never thought was possible. I truly love PumpUp and the family it creates for anybody who takes the time to reach out and ask for help. I hope to inspire others and help them when they need it." 

Her best advice for others looking to lead a healthy lifestyle is to be persistent. "I'm a small 5'2 girl at 115 lbs," she began. "I weighed 150 lbs at my heaviest and I was a train wreck. Now I take my motivation from what I want to achieve." Alyssa particularly likes to draw inspiration from motivational quotes. Lucky for her, PumpUp has a wellspring of quotes and photos that encourage others to lead a healthier lifestyle.

More recently, Alyssa has been shaving a lot of time off of her running pace. She can now run a mile at a speed of 6 minutes and 40 seconds and tracks all of her progress on the app. "Sweating makes me feel confident. I love the way I feel so accomplished after every workout," she said emphatically.

What happened when Alyssa found the positivity she needed | PumpUp Success Stories

Motivational Mantra

My quote is a verse from Shakespeare: "And though she be but little, she is fierce." This is part of who I am and is my motivation.

Alyssa's Meals

My breakfast consists of a granola bar or granola mixed with  either yogurt or milk.  The food that I eat is mainly organic. I do eat gluten free often and I do not drink dairy unless it is my only option. I prefer almond and coconut milk.

Biggest motivation

My biggest motivation is my boyfriend. He is loving, caring and can be a bit of a know-it-all. However, he helps me to achieve things I didn't believe I could do. This man pushes me to do my best and never sell myself short. (Although he is always making jokes about my height!!)

What happened when Alyssa found the positivity she needed | PumpUp Success Stories

More about Alyssa

I'd love to open a bakery that specializes in healthier versions of normal baked goods. I love to be in the kitchen, it is my 3rd home (after the gym!!)

Keep Alyssa pumped and check out her PumpUp profile @alyssa_a_ford! Have any questions for her? Let us know in the comments below! 

How Barbara lost all her pregnancy weight with the help of PumpUp - PumpUp Spotlight Series

image

PumpUp member @barbieoneone is our #WomanCrushWednesday (and #WomanCrushEveryday, along with every beautiful person on PumpUp!).  She joined the app to begin her post-pregnancy health and wellness journey with a bang, and she’s been the brightest beacon of light to the community ever since. After becoming inspired to adopt a healthier diet by other PumpUp members, Barbara lost all of her pregnancy weight within the span of a few months and looks amazing! Learn about her dramatic transformation and all of her sage, compassionate, and inspiring advice. 

In May 2014, Barbara was galvanized to lose a bit of weight quickly in time for a family summer vacation trip on the 4th of July.  “I had never faced a weight problem before and was slim all of my life, [but] with that being said, I made bad food choices while I was pregnant and barely wanted to do exercise or any walking,” she explained. At a small frame of 4’11, Barbara went from 110 lbs to 162 lbs after pregnancy. “I couldn’t believe what was going on,” she gasped. “It took me almost four years to realize that I was unhappy with my weight. I often hid behind my daughter and others while taking pictures because I was so embarrassed of the way I looked.”

image

Prior to PumpUp, Barbara admitted that she did not exactly maintain the healthiest diet, often resorting to fast food for a quick fix. “I attempted to eat a tad healthy, but it never really stuck,” she explained. “I didn’t know how to or even where to start before I joined PumpUp. I am Cuban, so most of the food I ate was fried, and consistent of too much red meat. I ate 2 to 3 times a day and the portions were out of control.”

Her eating habits improved since she became an active member of the PumpUp community! “Everything changed—it’s like I saw the light at the end of the tunnel,” she gushed. “I saw what other members were eating, so I did some research online to learn what good foods I could eat.”  Barbara researched what healthy food portions should look like, and now eats snacks in between meals.  “I eat 6 times a day and refuse heavy meals after 6:00 pm. Breakfast is one of my biggest meals of the day.” Her diet consists of lots of healthy protein and vegetables. “I love eggs, salad, fish, peanut butter (my best friend), green vegetables, all of it!”

In addition to eating mindfully, Barbara exercises 6 times a week, and walks at least 3 miles a day. “I lift weights—squats are my favourite!” she exclaimed.  “But the most important thing for me is to always be on the move.”  

image

Since joining PumpUp, Barbara lost all 52 lbs she gained while she was pregnant. “It would otherwise have been harder to do on my own. I have met so many great friends along the way whom I love and am grateful to interact with every single day,” she mentioned.  “I appreciate all of the encouragement and advice that they give to me on a daily basis, no matter what time it is.” The right mindset made a world of a difference for Barbara. “It was a matter of saying that I will [begin my weight loss journey] today, and not stop until I get to where I want to be,” she said. “Though it took awhile to muster up the drive to start, I knew that there would be no stopping me once I started.”

An unexpected obstacle has, however, come across Barbara’s path. “After I lost all of the weight from pregnancy, I started getting a pain on the right side of my stomach. I ended up getting an ultrasound that revealed that I have gallstones, and I must have surgery to remove my gallbladder.” The surgery is non-urgent, though her doctor mentioned that her condition may have been prompted by one of two factors: either because of the weight she gained while she was pregnant, or by losing weight too rapidly.

 

Thus, Barbara cautions against quick fixes, and believes that healthy living can be within anyone’s reach insofar as they choose to make it a long-term commitment. “Check with your doctor to see what activities are right for you,” she advised. “Make a diary of the exercises you do on a daily basis. Write down everything you eat, including the embarrassing and not so healthy meals. This way you’ll have a better picture of the things you need to change.  Set small weekly or monthly goals this way you won’t get discouraged.” Small, gradual steps are important for Barbara. “Ten percent of something is better than 100% of nothing. Any baby step that you take is one step closer to reaching your goals and improving your health,” she affirmed.  Finally, Barbara urged that those looking to lead a more healthy lifestyle do so at once, but to take their time losing weight. “Do it one step at a time, and make sure you are doing so in a healthy way,” she elaborated.

Barbara is most motivated to stay strong and healthy for her daughter, but is also proud of everything she has achieved for herself. “I’m also motivated by myself, because I choose to take responsibility for my own joy and success,” she stated. “I believe that my options are not limited. I work continuously till I achieve. I am committed to take action despite any fear I may have.” 

 image

Barbara’s Meals 

“My favorite snacks are trail mix , I can’t stay away from cheese and I love tomato soup. I love drinking water, green tea and smoothies.”

Motivational Mantra

“Successful people do daily what others do occasionally. Believe and your dreams will come true. The most beautiful thing a woman can ever wear is confidence.”

 image

More about Barbara 

I am in my early 40s and I have a 4 year old daughter whom I stay home with. Prior to having my daughter I was a medical assistant and worked at an HIV medical practice for 12 years in Miami. My work with the HIV population taught me how precious and fragile life really is, and how I should never take the littlest things for granted. It taught me  how to love appreciate myself and others.  Currently I need three courses to finish my Bachelors in Sociology.

Follow Barbara on PumpUp @barbieoneone to keep her pumped!!!!

Matt bounced back from knee reconstruction surgery and is now in his best shape ever- PumpUp Spotlight Series

image

One fateful day on Twitter, PumpUp was recommended to Matt as one of the ‘best fitness community apps’. Since joining PumpUp, Matt stated that he couldn’t agree more with this superlative. “I have been a frequent gym goer for years, but never really had the focus and determination that I do now until I had the reconstructive knee surgery.  I had hit a plateau, and was frustrated, but the awesome community on PumpUp really motivated me to go harder, lift heavier, and clean my diet up,” said Matt.

Prior joining PumpUp, Matt still exercised four days a week, for about an hour and did similar workouts to what he performs right now. This schedule helped Matt to gradually transform his body. In retrospect, however, he admits that his diet was still not at its best at that point in time. “I ate for the most part whatever was there, with no real thought to what was going into my system,” he said. “Fried food and soda was a regular occurrence for me, which definitely did not help.”

 image

In the ten weeks that Matt has been part of the PumpUp community, he’s upped the intensity of his workouts and cleaned up his diet. “I hit the gym 6 to 7 days a week, 2x a day for at least 2 of them, and workouts are much more intense, heavier weight, more explosive lifts, just a different attitude,” he explained. “I don’t eat anything bad anymore, just tons of protein low carbs and a lot of veggies.  No soda anymore either,” he laughed. Though his average daily activities have not changed, Matt finds himself approaching life with a renewed vigor. ‘Beastmode’ is aptly his favourite term. “It reminds me to be a monster and dominate every challenge in front of me, and never back down or quit.”

image

Matt’s struggles do not define him, but have rather influenced him to push even harder. Last year, knee reconstruction surgery was a major obstacle for him because he lost lots of muscle, was in a wheelchair for 2 months, crutches for another month, and gained a lot of weight. “It was difficult and painful to get back into lifting and exercise, but I just focused on making small progress daily,” he admitted. “And before I knew it, was back to my old size and strength.  I am bigger, more defined, and WAY more ‘beastmode’ now.  That struggle made me better.”

Matt is one of the most supportive members on PumpUp, and he’s regularly involved in the community to both receive motivation and give it back to others four-fold. “PumpUp started as a motivator for me, and it still is. I have met great people there, and continue to use it not just for motivation and inspiration, but for the feeling of community and positive vibes that permeate the app,” he said.

 image

According to Matt, the first step ‘off’ the couch is the most difficult, yet important part for those looking to start or lead a more active lifestyle. “It’s scary, it’s hard, but you will be amazed at what you can accomplish. You have to COMMIT to it. No quitting once you start, and find a support system that will give you a push when you feel stagnant and that will celebrate your successes with you,” he explained.

Both of his children, aged 2 and 6, are the biggest sources of inspiration for Matt. “My 6 year old son tells me every day that I’m his hero and he wants to be like daddy,” he gushed. “I’ll be damned if I’m not going to be the best me I can possibly be, and be the example of what’s possible when we focus and strive towards our goals.”  He also professed that the members on PumpUp have helped him tremendously throughout his journey. “Those people are amazing, and their posts, stories, and comments really help me stay focused and get excited to progress and push even harder,” Matt beamed.

Matt’s meals

“A monstrous 4 scoop protein shake, made with silk almond milk, and a bowl of cottage cheese with fresh pineapple on it.  As far as meals go, I eat tons of eggs, chicken, lean beef, veggies, and a lot of water. Nothing too impressive,”he laughed.

Motivational Mantra

“‘It is better to die on your feet, than to live on your knees’. To me this means never stop fighting, and pushing forward.  If you fail, fine. But to TRY and to fail is far superior to never trying.  The lessons learned in failure make progress that much sweeter.”

More about Matt

“I’m a major nerd!  I’m finishing my masters in software engineering, I’m also an artist (tattooed for years in college as a part time job at a shop), and a major goofball.  Always laughing and silly.  And I love horror movies and stupid jokes!”

 image

If you’re struggling to stay motivated, Matt encourages you to reach out to somebody on PumpUp or to anybody in your life and let them help. “While we manufacture and are responsible for our own motivation, that doesn’t mean that we can’t all use encouragement and a friendly comment,”said Matt.  “Take advantage of PumpUp, your fellow gym members, and enjoy the ride.  Goals are great, but it is the road we travel to get there that truly teaches us something.  Never lose sight of that. 

Follow Matt on PumpUp @mattgmi! 

Danielle found motivation again with PumpUp, and she looks incredible - PumpUp Spotlight

image

Simple motivation is fleeting and situational; true discipline requires a constant support system. This is where PumpUp made a difference for Danielle (@elle_428), and her absolutely outstanding progress inspires so many members each and every day.  “Before PumpUp, I lost a lot of the motivation I had at the beginning of my “get fit” journey,” she explained. “I learned about PumpUp through a YouTube blogger, who mentioned that it helped motivate and inspire her to work out. I wanted some inspiration, so I decided to join the PumpUp community [in July]. It wasn’t long before I was ready to get active again.”

In her last semester of college, Danielle explained that she fell into a lifestyle that was a bit more sedentary than she felt was acceptable. Due to her busy schedule, she stopped running as often and would only go to the gym sporadically. “The extent of my exercise was walking around campus with my Organic chemistry and Biochemistry textbooks,” she said. “I didn’t eat terribly, but I also had a lot of cheat days, especially when exams came around. Monitoring my macros was not even a thought for me at that time.”

 

image

When she began using PumpUp, Danielle would exercise twice a day, with intense training in the morning and low-impact activity in the evening. She is sure to combine the benefits of both aerobic and anaerobic exercise and now limits her workouts to one session a day: including a combination of running, biking, skipping, dancing, and/or weight training.  “After PumpUp, I [also] started paying more attention to my macros, making sure to increase my protein intake and eat as clean as possible,” she reveals.

 image

After losing around 25 lbs., Danielle is more confident with her body than ever before because of all of the strength and muscle that she developed in these past few months. Though studying for her MCAT was stressful, it helped to keep her mentally fit while she worked on her physical fitness. “With PumpUp, I’m hoping to finally get that body that I am in awe of,” she beamed. “I’ve had glimpses of my dream body here and there, so I’m super excited for what’s in store for me.” The PumpUp community continues to be inspired by all of Danielle’s outstanding progress, and will be there along her journey to help her have more good days than bad days. “Sometimes when I fall off my exercise routine, I can get pretty down on myself and just feel all around bummy,” conceded Danielle.  “I’m trying to have a more positive mindset and pick myself up a lot faster.” 

image

Patience is an important virtue for Danielle. She advises those looking to lead a more active lifestyle to be patient with themselves and to ‘trust the process’. “It is often hard to see the progress you’ve made when you’re looking at yourself in the mirror each and every day. However, if you think about how far you’ve come and how far you could be if you just keep going with the fit lifestyle, you then become your own inspiration and you’re unstoppable,” asserted Danielle.  “I struggle with appreciating the steps I’ve made, but I am training my mind to understand and appreciate what my body has done for me thus far. Once you have the correct mindset, the motivation just keeps on coming.”

image

  

Danielle’s Tasty Meals 

“My go-to meal is an egg white-n-avocado sandwich. I toast Ezekiel Bread for the sandwich and I add a tablespoon of honey for my sweet tooth. Add some sea salt and red pepper flakes and that’s nice and easy meal. My favorite drink (besides water and tea) is a kale and mango green smoothie. I have these two almost every day.”

Danielle’s Motivational Mantras

My favorite motivational saying is: Believe you can and you’re halfway there. 
Another saying I like is: Be stubborn about your goals, but flexible about your methods.”

 Danielle’s Favourite Exercise

My forever go-to exercise is running. Running will always be my number one. When I’m not up for a run, I would use my jump rope as backup cardio.”

More about Danielle

“I enjoy sketching and painting. Lately, I haven’t been as active artistically, but that is one of my passions.”

image

Keep Danielle pumped up on PumpUp! Follow her @elle_428 to help keep her motivated!

Jennifer Z is a vegan, rock-climbing rockstar - PumpUp Spotlight

There’s a saying that everyone wants to live on top of the mountain, but happiness and growth occurs while you’re climbing it. PumpUp member Jennifer Z is a rock-climbing rockstar who radiates inspiration. She’s also a model, a swim coach and is training for American Ninja warrior! Read about her creative ways to stay active, her smoothie secrets, her battle with an endocrine disorder called PCOS, and her vegan lifestyle down below!

image

Jennifer is a long-time and immensely loved PumpUp member. She’s been part of the community for almost a year, and joined the app to supplement her climbing and training regime. “I absolutely loved [PumpUp] and started using the app almost every day. I have been using it daily for the whole time that I’ve had it,” she insists. “I always tell people that it’s like the fitness version of Instagram, except that no one is a jerk,” she laughs. “I am really astounded by all of the support that everyone gives to each and every member. That’s what keeps me psyched on using it.”

Prior to PumpUp, Jennifer reveals that she lost a bit of enthusiasm for her climbing training and was dismayed that she wasn’t making any progress. “I couldn’t see my abs anymore because I had stopped running and weight training. I was still climbing and doing climbing-specific training, but I was neglecting parts of my body,” she laments. “I knew that my abs were still there, and wanted to be able to see them again!”  She was climbing an average of 4 days a week, 2-3 hours per session, but was not supplementing that training with any other kinds of exercise besides finger-strength training.

image 

The PumpUp community absolutely admires the strength, tenacity, and dedication that Jennifer puts into her training.  “I had never done a single squat until PumpUp came into my life. I thank this app for the awesome bum motivation. I love feeling strength in my body from head to toe,” she shares. Due to her busy school schedule, Jennifer currently climbs 2 days per week for 2-3 hours at a time and recently built a climbing wall in her house so that she can focus on training at home as well. “I also use a grip trainer in my car every day when I drive to and from school. I am shocked at how quickly my climbing has progressed since I started my new routine,” she explains. This is for good reason, of course. Last month, Jennifer was placed into the highest competing category of climbers!  

Jennifer finds creative ways to stay active outside of her climbing routine. Being a former sailboat racer, Jennifer enthusiastically took up windsurfing in stride. “I go to the Berkley Marina to windsurf with my best friend. Windsurfing is a killer full-body workout and is really good for grip strength. Windsurfing captured my heart.” She’s also started to practice parkour and calisthenics. “I am an absolute beginner at parkour and am mostly terrified, but I have found that adding tricks here and there make running MUCH more interesting,” she advises. One of her goals is to compete in a show called American Ninja Warrior next year. It makes good sense: rock climbers and traceurs often do best!

 image

Another fun fact? Her boyfriend James has been on American Ninja Warrior for 5 seasons, known colloquially as the Wild Man Ninja. They both stay active together when she visits him in Santa Cruz. “He lives one block from the beach, so we start our mornings with a sunrise stroll by the water while we sip on tea and watch the wildlife.  We go on runs to the lighthouse, climb on anything we can find, and practice acroyoga with each other during the day,” she says. He’s also helping her perfect her handstand too, and she hopes he’ll be able to mentor her in other sports as well. “I’m really hoping that one day he will teach me how to surf! I am so lucky to love someone who is as excited about living and playing as I am.”

Seven years ago, Jennifer experimented with veganism because she heard that it helped boost energy levels and she wanted to try it. To this day, she’s still a vegan! It has done wonders for her training performance and it melds very well with her lifestyle. “I never went back and don’t think I ever would.  It’s amazing to be able to eat so much food, yet have a ton of energy all the time.  I also am an animal lover and don’t want to support that industry,” she affirms.  Jennifer prefers to remain active, rather than regulating the amount of food that she eats. “I’ve dabbled in the 80/10/10 and Raw Till 4 diet, which are raw or mostly raw vegan diets that are 80% carbs, 10% protein, and 10% fat.  I think those diets are great, but they can be really difficult to maintain,” she elaborates.

 image

Her mornings start smoothly in every sense of the word. “I drink a smoothie every morning and have been known to post pictures on PumpUp of my smoothies in cat-themed glasses, sometimes with a kitten in the picture!” she shares excitedly. Besides having at least one 28-64 oz smoothie everyday, Jennifer also makes sure to eat a ton of vegetables with every meal. “It doesn’t feel like a real meal unless there are vegetables!,” she interjected. The rest of her diet is comprised of plenty rice, beans, gluten-free pasta and gluten-free sandwiches. Jennifer quickly shared this one adorable quirk of hers. “I also bake a lot of potatoes and yams and can eat 5-8 of them in one sitting, with no added ingredients or condiments,” she said.  “Something about eating one kind of food for an entire meal is strangely satisfying.  It really allows me to enjoy the full palate of flavors, and I usually feel super energized afterwards.  It is also really good for digestion!”

 image

Jennifer’s recipe-making is just like her personality: fun and free-spirited. “My recipes are always created on the fly.  Mostly, I fill my blender halfway with kale and spinach, then I put either water or juice and fruit, and top it off with chia seeds,” she detailed when talking about her smoothies.  She firmly discourages starvation, as it promotes otherwise unhealthy habits. “My main rule is that, as long as I’m eating healthy, I let myself eat as much as I want and never starve.  Starvation can only be kept up for so long… a binge always results!  I would rather eat in abundance.  I attribute my ability to eat as much as I want to my healthy, vegan diet,” she tells us.

Exercise and healthy eating vastly helps with Jennifer’s endocrine disorder called PCOS. The disorder interferes with her hormones and insulin levels. “I am pre-diabetic and sometimes have very low energy and am moody.  By exercising regularly and getting my nutrition game on point, I have been able to manage many of my symptoms,” she says with confidence. “80% of women with PCOS are obese, so I am very proud of keeping the weight off.  I attribute it to keeping active, sleeping well, staying happy by caring for my needs, eating a healthy vegan diet, and drinking tons of water.  Whenever I stop doing any one of those things, I can see and feel my health decline rapidly.”

 image

Her best advice for fellow PumpUp members looking to lead a more active life is to find a sport or activity to fall in love with, then find friends within that community. “They don’t have to be the coolest or the most popular.  Just make sure that whoever they are, they make you want to hang around them.  If they don’t make you want to try hard, it’s time to find new friends,” she counsels.

Biggest motivation

Freelee the Banana Girl has had a huge impact on how I eat.  She is a big high-carb vegan YouTuber.  I have been watching her videos for years, and her tips have really helped me maintain my weight as I get older.   I also am motivated by my mom.  She is 5’7 but her biceps look bigger and better than mine!  She does 500+ crunches every morning before she walks to work as well as some weight training and cycling.  I am also super motivated by all of my American Ninja Warrior friends!  They are so friendly and helpful.  There’s no pretense in that community, and they always push me harder with a smile.  I am so lucky to be surrounded by so many awesome individuals.”

Motivational Mantra
"It doesn’t matter how slow you go, you’re still lapping everyone on the couch."

Favourite workout exercise/routine on PumpUp

"I could not pick a favorite!  I love the abs section and the lower body workouts, but I seriously love almost all of the workouts that PumpUp has come up with for me.  That being said, I hate burpees and will avoid them like the plague!"

 image

More about Jennifer

"My daily routine is quite the grind.  I go to school 45 minutes away from home 4 days per week, and I work 3 different jobs 5 days per week!  I am currently studying Psychology and Social Action, which I absolutely love! There is so much homework, though, because I’m going full-time, and I often go to bed waaay later than I should.  For my first job, I am employed at an actuarial office and do lots of boring math. My second job is more fun, as I teach swimming to kids aged 2-months (water babies!!) all the way up to a pre-competitive  class of 8-10 years olds.  Lastly, I do lots of modeling and just recently did my first band merchandise photoshoot.  My modeling work has been featured in 2 books and 4 galleries in San Francisco."

Fun Fact

"I have never had a glass of milk and I have never had a cup of coffee!  I plan to keep it that way."

Follow Jennifer on PumpUp @pawsha and on Instagram and on YouTube @jaz.143 to cheer her along her journey!

We're obsessed with @Tweetii in the best way possible - PumpUp Spotlight

Ever wanted to radically change your life but didn’t know where to start? PumpUp’s @Tweetii is here to help. She’s one of our most encouraging and supportive members, and she has come a long way since she joined the PumpUp community. “I joined PumpUp in May 2014 because I was overweight, unhealthy, suffering from 2 ovarian cystic tumors, and wanted to make a difference in my life,” she explains. “I was tired of making excuses.” Learn how she got her start below!

image

Portion control is a habit that many people contend with throughout their health and wellness journeys. Tweetii committed to be more mindful of her meals after joining PumpUp.  “[Before], I ate triple cheeseburgers, three-piece chicken combos, and everything under the sun,” she confesses. “Being Trinidadian with a Venezuelan heritage, I love wholesome Caribbean and Latin American food. I only ate big portions.” Her lifestyle was overwhelmingly sedentary, as she’d work at home as an artist without much activity throughout the day. 

Since she became a member of the PumpUp community, Tweetii transformed her body and became imbued with confidence, receiving and giving back tidal waves of support throughout the entire process. “My life has totally transformed with the help of PumpUp. I eat healthy small portions multiple times a day, I exercise a lot in the privacy of my own home with the PumpUp workouts  (and at the gym occasionally) and spend a lot of my time being active.”

image

Tweetii is gaining muscle and losing fat due to these changes in her activity and diet, and this has altered her perspective. She is positive of her body image and encouraging towards others. "I am so grateful to say that I have accomplished my goal of being 105lbs from the 130+lb girl I was prior to being on PumpUp,” she says gleefully. “Not only have I lost the weight, I have also gained the confidence I always dreamed to have.”

Each person’s journey is fraught with its own obstacles. For Tweetii, it’s overcoming her 2 ovarian cystic tumors. “I have one in each ovary. One recently burst, and this definitely was an obstacle because of the pain, she tells us. “I deal with it with the help of medication, exercise, and managing my stress with the love and support from my PumpUp family.”

image

If you can count on somebody to make your day on PumpUp, it’ll easily be Tweetii.  Every week, she strives to post at least one physical tip, one spiritual tip, and one motivational quote. She truly looks out for each member’s wellbeing in a holistic manner. Tweetii is a digital and visual artist in her country, and the content on her PumpUp page reflects that! “I juggle designing magazines, working with companies and painting. Art is my passion! Hence why my posts are always artistic and fun!” she explains.

“The best advice I have to PumpUp members looking to lead a more active life is to not excessively concentrate on calories but to put your main focus on chemical intake,” she urges. “Organic and fresh is the way to go.” This includes minimizing or even eliminating the consumption of processed and packaged food. Tweetii’s biggest motivation is her mother, who is currently going through chemotherapy treatment for colon cancer. “She’s fighting hard and that motivates me to fight hard for myself as well,” reveals Tweetii.

image

"Moi et Moi". Acryllic paint on canvas. (Via TweetiiTheArtist.tk)

Favourite Exercises

I love the PumpUp workouts! It definitely was a major factor in my weight loss journey! My favorite exercises are squats, bicycle crunches, reverse crunches, calf raises, glute bridges, Russian twists and leg pull-ins.

Favourite Snack

"My favorite snack in the world is Popcorn! I’m obsessed with it!”

Motivational Mantra
This quote is her own! “‘Never Deprive Yourself from becoming the person you were always destined to be’. I always say it and it kept me going.”

image

 
Be sure to follow Tweetii on PumpUp @tweetii and view her portfolio on her own personal website: www.tweetiitheartist.tk.