Hey guys! So since I'm sure you've already looked at the pictures let me just apologize for those of you who didn't really set out to see me in a bra and spanks today, but this post has been a long time coming so I appreciate you reading on! If you've ever asked questions about my fitness and health, I may answer it here:) I admit to being both nervous and excited as I type this out, because knowing that we're putting ourselves out there to the world in any way is always tough, but especially when it's so literal like this. But here it is, my 'before and after', no control top panty-hose, no slimming heels, not even a proper hairstyle or makeup.haha
I've been meaning to hit the publish button for days now, but I'm getting past the nervousness by remembering that you guys are great friends and supporters, and that anyone who really cares about me won't be critical or judgmental but encouraging and loving like always:) Besides, the way I see it is yes, I'm shy and embarrassed about what I looked like before, but I had just had a baby a few weeks before those pictures were taken, and also I'm not that girl anymore!
So, now I have to think of how to condense all that I want to share in this post, cuz there's a whole lot! Lets start like this: My name is Emily Meyers, I've had four kids in the last four years. My oldest is 3 and my youngest is only 3 months old! These photos are ten weeks apart as you can see. I've lost 2 pounds on the scale, but I've lost 12% of my bodyfat. That means that I've turned all that fat into muscle:) yeah baby!
A brief 'Why': You guys that have been following and reading a while already know that around Christmas time I wasn't setting goals of weight loss for the new year, but rather goals of obtaining muscle-tone and getting leaner. I started having kids relatively quickly after I got married and I knew that I wanted to have my kids close together (for many reasons that I'll not address here), as you know they're all about a year apart and because of that I've really put my body through the ringer. I knew towards the middle of this last pregnancy with Lydia that I wanted to focus big time on getting back into shape once she was born and into getting some muscle back into these soft squishy limbs of mine.haha
I've had some pretty tough pregnancies and so I had to depend on gentle and careful ways of keeping active during them. I was extremely sick with my first 24/7 to the point of daily injections at the hospital because I couldn't even keep down water let alone anything solid for months. I've had placenta previa with two, miscarriage scares with two, I've been on bed-rest at some point for all of them, so I had to be extremely careful when exercising during pregnancy, but I did what I could at home and ate the right way. My goal was always that I would reach my pre-pregnancy weight before getting pregnant again, and between my food choices, nursing, and light exercising with just chores and child lifting etc it happened pretty quickly. I could feel my muscle deteriorating more and more however, so I knew I had to step it up. Once I hit 6 weeks post-partum and my midwife gave me the go ahead for exercising, we took some photos and decided to start eating very clean, and I started in on a regular fitness routine.
How: to answer a few questions asked often, no it's not genetics.haha I have all different body-types in my family and so I've worked hard just like anyone else to keep some semblance of my figure throughout my close-together pregnancies. I've always loved to exercise however and started going to my first fitness classes before I was even in highschool. I've also always loved whole grains and vegetables of all kinds as well. I was the child that took everyone's veggies off the table when they didn't want them, and the one who tried out all the different diets my mom experimented with. I was lucky enough to marry a fantastic cook who also has a huge passion for whole foods, and who for the last few years has been very involved in fitness. Up until ten weeks ago I never really watched what I ate, I never counted calories, I never felt guilt for eating, but we both also naturally wanted healthier things for meals and were so active that I was able to indulge whenever I wanted really (have you SEEN my instagram feed from up untill christmas? cookie dough galore.haha).
Sorry if this is one big rant and not very organized, I feel like I'm bursting at the seams with info I want to share, questions that need answered. haha I'll stress again that I will have many many more posts on this topic, I just knew that I needed to kick them off with this big progress post. so bare with me! :)
Food/workouts: Before you ask about my diet I'll just tell you right off the bat that I'm eating about twice the amount of food now than I was before. You gotta feed that muscle! haha Martin and I cleaned up our diet a bunch like I said, and until I get closer to my goals we're eating lots of lean proteins, healthy carbs, tons of veggies and greens, and we're juicing every day. I work out twice a day- one little cardio session at home and then a weight routine followed by a little more cardio at the gym. I have a husband that works full time and so I work out early in the morning before the kids get up and he leaves for work, or in the evenings after dinner and usually once the kids are down. I belong to a gym that's open till midnight so that works for me. No I do not have a nanny, I don't have a cleaning lady, I barely have a babysitter for our date-every-week goal(which whenever we do get it we go to the gym together.haha) I work full time as a mommy of four babies when their awake, and then during nap time and a little in the evenings after my workout I'll get blogging and emails done (I promise I'll post more schedules very soon too!), so things are definitely pretty busy around here!
Motivation: I've always been a huge overachiever. I always set out with very unrealistic goal lists for the day knowing full well that I won't get even half of them done probably, but I still like to challenge myself and aim high. Why not?! I'm motivated by the feeling of progressing and success, for that moment of scratching another thing off the list. I'm determined to better myself constantly, and I work my arse off every single day to make my family my top priority, then my housework and job and everything else squish in the cracks where there's room.
If you're a follower than you know that I'm not some crazy workaholic and that I have many many quiet and slow days here with my kids, but the bottom line is that I KNOW that when I take a little time for myself that I'm a better wife and mother, and putting myself in the best possible shape that I can be so I can run with my kids and tackle them into a tickle party is the best thing to do with that 'me' time that I can think of. It's not an accident that I've come so far these last couple months, it's not luck or some magic diet pill, it's not good genes. Right now I eat 7 healthy meals a day and work out like crazy about 6 days a week. I'm working towards a goal right now so I'll keep up this lifestyle till I get there. I know that what I get out is directly tied to what I put into it, just like everything else in my life, so I'm giving it my all, I'm making it a top priority, I'm finding my strong and I'm being as fearless as I possibly can:)
The Goal: I'm a very goal oriented person, and in order to achieve something I really need and love to have a goal in sight. meaning that for instance I can't just say "I want to get some laundry done", I have to set the goal of getting every bit washed and folded and put away.haha When I wake up in the morning, I write out a list that paints the picture of where I'd like to be at the end of the day, and then I strive for that every minute that I can. I have lots of daily, weekly, monthly, and yearly goal lists and schedules, and I love feeling so organized.
When I decided to start this journey of health and not weight loss (yes you've been following along:)) I didn't really have a specific place that I wanted to end up other than a mental picture of what I'd like to look like (we all have those.haha). My husband and I spent a long time talking about our lives currently and where we wanted to be in the future as far as our health and well-being, and then by happenstance we found a goal together:) Martin and I are going to compete in the NPC Fitness Competition! Martin will be in the Mens Physique category, and I'll be doing the Bikini Category. We're like the step below those crazy bodybuilding competition.haha Crazy right?! Yes it is, and not only that, but it's in less than three weeks. OMG. Yes I'm super nervous! I was indecisive about it at first, because I"m a very self conscious person when it comes to bathing suits let alone wearing one on stage under incredibly bright lights (hence the ridiculously dark tans.haha), and I knew that there are those who would disapprove maybe, but the way I see it is this is my choice and my life, and like I said before, those that really love and support me will be happy for me! I just knew that this goal would give me huge accountability and motivation, and it certainly is working great! haha There are very strict regulations about the type and cut of the bikini, hair and make-up, even skin tones are judged and so need to be as spot on as possible. I've always thought that the people in photos preparing to go on stage in those competitions looked so silly for having on so much sunless tanner, and now I have to go and do the same thing! haha It makes perfect sense now though because when they get up there in all the lights, you have to be able to see contours and curves, I mean that is kind-of the point of the sport.haha
In Conclusion: With all my my hard work and training I'm doing, this is all for for me and by extension my family. To prove to myself just how hard I can push myself and where I can go with ym hard work, and to be the very best version of myself! Martin decided that if we were going to go along with this seemingly radical idea to compete that we'd definitely need someone who'd done it and been successful if at all possible to teach us about being on stage and he posing, etc. We found an awesome coach who is an IFBB Pro himself and has taught a bunch of competition winners! No pressure right? haha I'll be introducing him on the blog very soon. He doesn't live here but we've had good skype calls and it's been great. There are so many ins and outs to competing on stage in a sport like this, and where we were so short on time it only made sense to have a coach instead of trying to figure it all out on our own before the show.
So I guess I'm getting close to a stopping point here! You're probably thinking "phew".haha Again I'll have lots more posts on my health and fitness including also tips and tricks, recipes, product reccommendations, etc so feel free to ask your questions any time! I am certainly passionate about this and have much to share as you can see.haha As I said before it is hard to push the publish button and put these photos out there, but I am really proud of the results of my hard hard work even if they may not look so big to some people, and I just hope that like with all other aspects of my blog, that sharing my experiences with you guys can somehow help and or inspire you in some way!
Lastly remember that every one is different and that you should never compare your progression with someone elses, because they're not you! We all try to live our lives to the best of our ability and wither you've lost one pound or a hundred pounds, walked one block or ran 26.2 miles, haven't touched sugar in two years or two days, we're all trying our best or want to start anyway's and we are the only ones that are fit to judge what we can or cannot do. Don't ever let anyone's negativity bring you down because it just stems on jealousy, and remember that every little baby step is still progress forward!!
Phew, that's all for now:) I hope you're still awake! haha Thank you again so much for reading and for your constant encouragement and support. Your friendships make me feel like the luckiest girl in the world and I appreciate you more adn more each day. I can't wait to share more of my journey with you, to answer all of your questions and to maybe provide some encouragement and motivation to you!
I hope you have a great rest of your day, and I'll see you again soon!
P.S. if you're interested in following more closely to my adventures, be sure and be my friend on Instagram!