Another extra special Inklings of Inspiration for April!
Someone who has been an inspiration for me throughout my last two years of college, Brianna Weeks, whose progress has been amazing! Even from her first response to the interview, “ I hope this helps someone start, strengthen or continue a journey not just of weight loss but of life change,” she is just a gem to all of those she surrounds and is a motivator to all wanting to make a change. She mentions a lot of things that I stress to my friends and family, especially the negative side effects obesity can have on you later in life.
Check out her interview below, as well as progression pictures!
- How did you get started on your healthy lifestyle change?
I got started back in January 2013. I wanted to feel more comfortable in my body. When I was at a heavier weight I felt uncomfortable all the time, dressed up, naked, sleeping or standing. Also I wanted to be proud of my body and take control of it and not let it control me.
- What is your motivation?
My motivation is the patients I see everyday (I am a registered nurse) who have chronic irreversible illness because they did not take care of their bodies when they were my age.
- Do you follow a strict diet regime?
I actually just finished a fitness plan called Fitgirl for 28 days that was pretty regimented but I lost 10lbs and I feel stronger. I would recommend it for sure (Just Google Fitgirl 28 Day Jumpstart). Usually though I wouldn’t call my eating plan strict or a diet, its balanced. I usually don’t eat meat. I love to cook and I cook a lot so I typically don’t buy meat. I go through periods of 3-6 months without chicken turkey, pork or beef. Cutting out meat helps me to allocate my calories to fish and fresh vegetables and beans helps me to choose better eating options. It helps me to be more conscious about what I put in my body. Everyone is different.
- Do you follow a strict workout regime?
I try to work out 3-4 times a week. 5-6 if I want to see results sooner. This year I’ve been going about 4-5x a week.
- How long have you been on this journey?
I have officially been on this journey since January 2013.
- What would you say has been the hardest part?
The hardest part is not being a slave to the scale. Being healthy by working out and eating right is a reward in itself. Just because you don’t see the scale moving or its moving in the wrong direction doesn’t mean I should give up.
- What are some routines that you swear by?
I swear by strength conditioning and weight training. Using your own body as a weight is so powerful. Every time I do a side plank or a tricep dip I use my body and it gets easier every time. I don’t feel my workout is complete without strength or weights. Most women are so scared to lift. To me, its empowering!
- Do you have any advice or words of encouragement for those out there looking to get started or to get back on track?
One bad eating day or skipped gym day doesn’t make you fat or lazy and on the contrary one clean eating day and crossfit session doesn’t make you fit. Consistency is key. Build a habit and keep it going. Challenge yourself every now and again to break up the monotony. I do cleanses or fasts every now and again to increase my focus and reignite my passion for the journey.
- How much progress have you made thus far?
My progress has been slow but steady and maintainable. My heaviest recorded weight was 198 lbs but I feel I’ve been heavier than that. My first goal was 175 lbs, but then I saw how after working hard that goal was attainable. I want to keep setting “unattainable” goals so if I land just a little shy I will still have made progress. I started off in a size 14/16 dress. I am an 8/10 right now. I would love to be a solid 8 dress size. My current weight is 165-168- ish and my new weight goal is 155 but I would be happy with 160.
10. Is there any one thing or things that have helped to make the biggest impact whilst on this journey?
When bad things happen I work out. When good things happen I work out. I try not to let emotions get me into a rut.
I hope that hearing about another story is helping someone on their own journey. Brianna has always looked great but check out some of her progress pictures to see how amazing she looks now! I appreciate her showing her pictures and being open and honest!