My body evolution, part 3

You can read part 2 here. On with the story…

Part 3: the still-middle years (I’m only 34)

2014–The Present: With bodyweight training on my radar and a growing appreciation for how working with dumbbells made me feel, I joined a gym and committed to three weight training workouts per week. I remember how hard consistency was in the past, so I gave myself the grace to miss a time or two without kicking myself.

I got to play with all sorts of new toys–barbells and kettlebells, ropes and tires, and freaking sledgehammers. I gained a little more muscle and lost a little more fat. Then I fell in love with deadlifts. That’s it–game over. There’s no going back now.


I continued teaching Zumba classes twice a week and lifting at the gym, but I felt like I was meant to do more. The teacher in me was ready to evolve and take on a new challenge. And I did–I became a NASM Certified Personal Trainer in May 2014. I didn’t feel pressured to start training clients immediately, so I continued to focus on my own progress and learn from the pros.

I completed programs like Strong Curves by Bret Contreras, Lean and Lovely and the Fall Freedom Challenge by Neghar Fonooni, and the 20×20 Challenge by Jill Coleman.

I tried workouts shared in email newsletters from Jen Sinkler, John Romaniello, and Jordan Syatt and several free workouts available at

I exposed myself to all the different ways coaches and personal trainers shared their work and personas with the world.

And I got comfortable in the rhythm of my life–go to work, teach Zumba, go home to my family. Go to work, go to the gym, go home to my family. After all I had the novelty of a new workout program every few weeks and discovering sore spots in new places on my body. For me, that was enough.

Until December 2015.

Two of my long-time Zumba students cornered me at the same time after class urging me to take them on as clients. They hadn’t schemed on this together; independently, their husbands had asked what they wanted for Christmas, and it turns out the answer was personal training sessions. From me.

Talk about pressure! (The good kick-your-butt-into-action kind.)

And that’s how I officially became a personal-trainer-in-training the very next month.

Be gone, comfort zone!

So now I work full time during the day, then train my ladies in the evenings. I head home and enjoy daily dog walks with my husband, cooking, reading, and shows on Netflix.


I still aim to work out at least three times per week, but I play with intensity. Some days I feel strong and ready to hit leg day hard. Other days I barely have the energy or desire to move, so I take it easy with 20 minutes of foam rolling, stretching, and yoga flows to reconnect with how my body.

I’m sitting at around 160 pounds these days with a totally different body composition than I had years ago at the same weight. I honestly don’t care what number the scale shows; I just care that my body feels healthy, strong, and capable. I want other women to enjoy the same feeling I know is possible, and it drives me to help them start personal training and learn how to embrace the iron.

Featured image by internets_dairy

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