My Journey with Health & Fitness | A.Fogarty Personal
Growing up an athlete I never had to worry about staying in shape, working out, or even eating healthy. It always came natural to me. I was never super skinny, but never overweight. I always just maintained an average healthy body. Then college hit. The freshman 15 is a real thing guys. I drank way too much, didn't get enough sleep, and my diet was no where near balanced or healthy. I developed insecurities I never knew existed and really struggled with my self confidence. Being an athlete was always a part of my identity, and when I went to college I felt like I lost that part of me. Not only the physical activity but the confidence.
I grew up in a household that didn't own a scale, and a Mom who never criticized her body but celebrated a healthy balanced life. She taught me those very same principals. Love yourself & treat your body well.
After my freshman year of college I knew something had to change. I needed to find a way to work health and fitness back into my life now that sports were no longer present. I started listening to my body. I cut out dairy (something that SUCKED but was so worth it in the end). I got a personal trainer. And little by little I started to fall in love with myself again.
It wasn't until I started working on myself and being happy by myself that love came into my life. Call is cliche, but the universe has weird ways of working. The end of that summer Cole and I started dating. It was like the world was waiting for me to get my shit together before introducing me to my soul mate. I know, I know, it sounds so cheesy. But I'm a true believer that you can never love someone else until you learn to love yourself first.
My relationship to health and fitness the past few years has come and gone in waves. I've found that when I'm most stressed (ehem.. summer wedding season) working out is the first thing to go. And this is exactly how it shouldn't be. I remember last winter I was getting SO bored with working out. I was doing the BeachBody 21 Day Fix working out at home and I remember seriously resenting it. I hated "pressing play" but I really had no excuse. It was 30 minutes at home. Why was that so hard? I realized that working from home and working out at home is just too much for me. I needed to get out of the house and get re-inspired.
I was introduced to The Bar Method and I found like my whole philosophy on fitness changed. I loved everything about it. I loved the fact that I had to schedule ahead of time. It was like making a date with myself, an obligation and commitment to working out that I didn't want to back out on. I loved that I could feel the burn & shake without breaking a sweat (or having to wash my hair after). And I loved that I saw crazy results just in a few short weeks. The community in the studio was so great and I've met a lot of new friends.
Then I felt like I plateaued. Not necessarily with my results, but with my energy and motivation. I needed to get re-inspired again. I started introducing cycling and loved that it was the complete opposite of barre. The two together were the perfect combo to keep me in shape and excited about working out. I've become obsessed with Jibe Cycling Studio. The amazing instructors, badass playlist, dancing on the bike, dripping sweat, I love it all.
Once I got in a routine of barre & spin I slowly started going to the gym again too. Lifting heavy weights. Mostly getting a good upper body workout in that I wasn't getting at barre & spin. I came across Fit with ASD and love her Daily Burn. It was a twist on the traditional workouts and I loved the variety. She breaks her workouts down and has videos linking to each exercise so you know you're doing it right.
I've realized that my body and brain like it best when I switch it up. So for right now I'm working out 5-6x a week with a mixture of barre (2-3x), spin (1-2x), and the gym (2-3x).
Sure, life happens and it doesn't always work out as perfectly as planned. But right now in my "slow season" this has been working for me.
I've made a routine of Sunday nights planning my workouts for the week. Scheduling in barre & spin (maybe with a friend) and then filling in the other days with gym workouts. The act of penciling it into my schedule makes it harder to break that commitment to myself.
My relationship with fitness is ever changing, and I think that's what keeps it interesting. To continue to fall in love with new workouts and yourself as you see the amazing capabilities of your body.
I'm not perfect, but I do have a little motivation right now. With my upcoming bachelorette and wedding around the corner I made the vow to try to be in my best version of myself. No crazy diets or cleanses but just push myself harder than I have before to see what I'm capable of.
I knew that if I wanted to see results, I had to start being more aware of what I was eating. As I mentioned before I have made the decision to go dairy free which honestly has made the biggest impact. No more excessive bloating & migraines! But as I cut out dairy I started to be more in tune with my body and what it liked and didn't like. I started to replace dairy with soy milk and realized that my body does not like soy either. This has been a huge adjustment because soy sauce is in some of my favorite dairy free recipes. However, I'm lucky to have friends with the same belly issues and we have found things like coconut aminos which is a great replacement for soy sauce! I also substitute almond milk, vanilla almond milk creamer, and coconut yogurt to replace any dairy I was previously including in my diet. I also add things like hot sauce or peppers & scallions to recipes to give them more flavor instead of adding cheese - because let's face it there is no real dairy-free cheese that tastes even half way decent.
But the biggest change we have made in our house since January is meal planning. We don't meal prep breakfast lunch and dinner with plain chicken and rice - don't worry! But we sit down and make a meal plan for dinner every night of the week. We're choosing healthy and NEW recipes to avoid eating out and make better decisions at home. I've honestly fell in love with cooking, and began getting excited about dinner time. I'm obsessed with using my Rifle Paper Company Meal Planner because it allows me to make a meal schedule for the week while including the ingredients we need on the grocery list next to it. If you're interested, you can follow me on Pinterest for some new recipe ideas.
I'm a firm believer that health & fitness is a journey and not a destination. I have no goals to lose X amount of weight or go on some crazy diet. But I hope this post gives you a peek into my journey and maybe inspires you to find a new workout you're passionate about or cooking at home again. But mostly just a reminder to love yourself - treat your body well - it's the only place you have to live.