Who: Nicole Zacharias
Occupation: Physiotherapist and BeachBody Coach
By The Numbers: Over 200 pounds at my heaviest carrying twins (but stabilized to 163), currently 136 pounds, for a total weight loss of 27 pounds.
The Weight Gain: My weight was always an issue for me. I definitely struggled as a teenager and in my early university days.
I had blamed it all on my poor eating habits. Diet and binge eating were far too familiar for me. I was always very active and I did enjoy exercise, but I just could not seem to find the happy medium. Dieting included my own extreme versions of clean eating that were just not sustainable. No carbs, no fats, no treats. It’s no wonder my results would never last. I was a prime example of the ups and downs of yo-yo dieting. I also spent tons of money on trainers, boot camps and gym memberships. I exercised for hours but my body never really changed.
Final Straw: When I went back to work post-twin pregnancy (with an older toddler at home as well), I felt awful. The twins were eight months old, so I cut myself some slack. However, as the months went on, I was not seeing improvement. I am a physiotherapist and my job is to educate and help others rehabilitate. I felt insecure demonstrating core exercises. I was out of shape and it was embarrassing.
I knew I wasn’t happy feeling this way. It was depressing... I had to do something.
The Plan of Attack: I saw a before and after picture of a friend of a friend on Facebook. Her pictures were amazing and I was so inspired. I joined a private online challenge group she was hosting on Facebook and bought the BeachBody Program she used — the 21 Day Fix. I began to feel better very quickly even though I was struggling to do the full 30-minute workouts in the beginning, but I followed the diet plan to perfection.
I’ve been on the program for three and a half months now and I’ve lost 27 pounds. I’m feeling so great — better than I thought I could after having twins. I have recently become a BeachBody Coach myself to help inspire others with the same struggles.
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The Exercise Factor: The 21 Day Fix consists of at-home DVDs. I had been fit in the past and have even ran a full marathon. But when I started this program in February, I was embarrassed about how poor my fitness was. I did the modifications on the videos for the first few weeks for many of the exercises, but I quickly improved.
I wanted to lose 18 lbs and 145 pounds was my goal. In the first 21 days, I lost 14 pounds! I have now happily stabilized my weight at 136 pounds.
For my current fitness, I have advanced to the the program's 21 Day Fix Extreme. It involves 30 minutes of daily extreme exercise. The program offers variety every day: plyometrics, weights, cardio, pilates and yoga. I do it 30 minutes a day, seven days a week.
The Food Element: I eat way more proteins. I also gave up cream in my coffee because it had become a bad habit. So was Nutella. I was also craving sweet OJ all the time instead of water. But I stopped eating fast food and mayonnaise.
The hardest adjustment for me was just not sampling all my children’s food. I realized I was eating a lot of bread crusts and half-eaten meals.
I will not call it a diet as it has become my lifestyle. I’ve never felt better and will continue on this path. Now that I have surpassed my goal weight, I do allow myself the occasional treat. I don’t stress over it, I just get right back on track afterwards.
The Current Day-to-Day: I usually wake up early and get my workout in before anyone in the house is up! This way I start the day off right.
I am most proud of my dedication. It’s not easy in the beginning. There are loads of temptations but I kept my eye on the prize. I knew what I wanted. As a busy mom to a 4-year-old and 20-month-old twins, who is working part-time, I have been able to get in the best shape of my life.
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