Tell us a little bit about yourself!
I am a passionate, strong woman. I’m a devoted family member, mom to a phenomenal 11-year-old daughter, and a loyal friend.
I’ve been teaching high school language arts for 25 years, and I love my job. I’m also a sports fanatic (Go Oregon Ducks and the Portland Trailblazers!) In addition, I’ve been CrossFitting for over 10 years.
What did your life look like before Stronger U?
While I have been a CrossFitter for over 10 years, I have definitely had my ups and downs with with my weight. Before Stronger U, I was Keto for three years. Initially, I lost 20 pounds, but after the death of my dad and with the onset of the pandemic, my “Keto” efforts meant I stayed clear of carbs, but I went way overboard on fat!
Not surprisingly, I put that 20 pounds back on. The moment that shook me out of complacency was when I stepped on one of those body composition scales: I was shocked, appalled, and scared. My body fat was out of control. My husband has brain cancer, and here I am risking a heart attack based on choices that I have control over. The minute I got home, I signed up for Stronger U.
What does your life look like now?
I never imagined I could be where I am now. My life goal was to be able to do a strict pull-up; the other day, I did 30 strict pull-ups in a workout. I never imagined myself ever being able to wear a bikini: I can and do now.
I’ve always purchased large shirts and size 8-12 pants. When I went shopping for new jeans, I asked for a size 6, and the lady helping me laughed. She brought me a size 2. WHAT? My activity-induced asthma has improved immeasurably. I have unceasing energy, my stamina and ability to perform at CrossFit has significantly improved. I feel strong, healthy, and confident.
Where did you hear about Stronger U?
I’ll be forever grateful to my sister for encouraging me to sign up with her. She recruited my mom, too, and we all got Coach Mo. What a blessing.
Why do you think Stronger U worked so well for you compared to other programs or diets?
First, it forced me to use a food scale, and boy was that eye-opening. The first time I measured my shredded cheese for a salad, I has hit with a harsh reality: realistically, I was putting 3-5 servings of cheese on my salads. Let’s not even talk about the ranch. I also love the gamification of it–at least, that’s how I viewed it when I started.
It was fun trying to hit my macros exactly, almost like a puzzle. I was thrilled to be able to put carbs back in my life. I had not had an apple in three years (please don’t judge me:) In my 9 months with Stronger U, I have never felt hungry. It was an adjustment mentally to have to step on a scale every day, but that, too, helps keep me grounded in reality. I can’t lie to myself. It holds me accountable, but not hostage, because I’ve learned exactly what I need to do if I need to drop a pound. I’m not emotionally tied to the scale anymore–it’s just information.
What was something you regularly ate while on Stronger U that people wouldn’t expect you to eat on a diet?
SkinnyPop Microwave Popcorn
How much weight did you lose with Stronger U?
How many inches did you lose off your waist?
Did you have any favorite non-scale victories to share?
I can now do strict pull-ups!!
Has Stronger U improved your overall quality of life?
Stronger U has improved my life in every way. I have been able to model for my daughter what is possible when you work hard and stay disciplined. I feel great, I have so much more energy, my performance at CrossFit has improved: I feel so much better about myself. I am proud of myself and what I have accomplished.
Has Stronger U improved your overall health?
I stepped back on that same InBody scale 3 months after the initial time. At that point, I had lost 20 pounds and over 10% body fat. Now that I’m down 40 pounds, I’m eager to see how my body composition has changed again. My blood pressure and cholesterol are down, and my muscle mass is up.
If someone is thinking about joining Stronger U, what advice would you give them before beginning their journey?
I have encouraged at least 5 people to join. You absolutely have to be willing to track everything you eat, which is way easier than you think, but if you are willing to do that, sign up right now. You will never regret it.
Would you like to give a shoutout to your coach, SU staff member, or community member?
Coach Mo is a true inspiration! She is an incredible athlete and a great cheerleader. She has a gift of balancing humor with honesty. She says just the right thing when I’m frustrated, and she genuinely celebrates all of my successes. She is awesome.