Major: Mass Communications with a track in Public Relations
Light bulb moment: Two years into college, noticeable weight gain inspired a motivational New Year’s resolution
Personal goal: Run a full marathon and participate in a triathlon
Biggest accomplishment: Running a half marathon in 1 hr. and 43 mins.
Favorite healthy snack: Carrots
Favorite workout: The “Big Four” of weightlifting: chest press, deadlift, squats, and overhead press
Advice for fellow Bulls: “Becoming fit is not a destination, but a way of life. Change your mindset and your body will follow.”
I had been a dancer my entire life and used that as my excuse for exercise. I never found going to the gym beneficial before, but after graduating high school, I said goodbye to dance and traded in my passion and headed down a road of immense weight gain. I set foot inside a gym for the first time ever during my freshman semester at USF in 2010. My roommates introduced me to the Campus Rec Center, but we only worked out when we had nothing better to do. By January 1, 2012, I was 30 pounds heavier and living an extremely toxic lifestyle.Time to Make a Change
I began by making it my New Year’s resolution to lose 10 pounds. I made it a priority to go to the gym regularly. I began running, using the elliptical, and going to various group fitness classes at the Campus Rec Center. I also altered my diet as best as I could while having a meal plan. I made healthier decisions, like choosing salads over French fries and grilled over fried. Slowly, I started to see results, but it wasn’t until coming back after the summer of 2012 that my dedication and motivation grew. That 10 pounds loss turned into 20, and after learning as I much as I could about nutrition and weight training, I gained a lot of muscle and lost another ten pounds.Personal Inspiration
My inspiration comes from my results. I have become what I never thought I could. I look in the mirror and am happily surprised almost every day. There is nothing like looking back on what I call my “pre-fitness days” and seeing how much I have changed, positively. I find that staying healthy has helped me both physically and mentally. I aspire to inspire. I feel better, cleaner and more at peace when I stick to a balanced diet of fruits, vegetables, proteins and mainly complex carbohydrates. I just loved the way my body felt. Not only did I feel healthy, but I also felt free.Taking on a Challenge
I wanted to continue to learn what I could, so I could inspire other people to feel as I did. Running helps me clear my head, and at the time, I was going through some personal issues. I started running to feel closer to my thoughts, and one day I ran 8 miles without even realizing it. I began challenging myself on time and distance, and with the influence of some of my best friends, I decided that I was ready to run a half marathon. I found that challenge so appealing.
I consider myself a hardcore weightlifter. I have seen the most change since starting a schedule of four days of cardio with six days of lifting. However, this style of workout may not work the best for everyone. Personally, I work one muscle group a day for five days, and one day I do a full body workout. Here’s a little insight to my regimen, and check out this resource for proper exercises for these muscle groups:
Saturday: Full Body
Do you or a friend have a wellness journey that would inspire fellow Bulls? Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org