This week our Stronger U Member Spotlight is highlighting Judith Bernadette Frias, who has been working with Coach Winnie Abramson. Congrats, Judith!
What’s your name? (First and last names, pretty please)
Judith Bernadette Frias
Who was your Coach?
Winnie, formerly Karina Verespy
If there was one thing you could say to your Coach, what would it be?
Winnie is kind and understanding but also honest and blunt. She gets that I’m human but doesn’t hesitate to call me out on nonsense. Winnie, you understand my goals better than I do at times. You’ve also become a great friend and I can’t express how much value you’ve added to my life. How much more you’ve improved me, my life, my mental state, and body composition and strength.
Tell us a little about you. Where are you from? Are you a parent? What do you enjoy doing in your free time?
I’m from NYC born and raised. I briefly lived in Ohio and Arizona in my late teens. I love the country though and any opportunity I get to leave the city and spend hiking or in a cabin far away, I’ll take it. I don’t have children but I have 2 cats that are like my children and an awesome, supportive Fiance Greg.
What was the moment that made you decide to join Stronger U?
When I finished a clean eating challenge at my former Crossfit gym and realized that it wasn’t how I was going to lose weight. I had noticed a gym friend who leaned out, seemingly overnight, what she’d done and the rest is history. I joined SU and ain’t going nowhere.
Is there anyone from the SU community you would like to shout out?
Yo! SO MANY! I’ll start with Mike D and my coach WINNIE!, Mike Alessi, Loni Sargent Bash, Shannon Mckenna, Patty Blancaflor and Herm, Clayton Tyger, Mike Millilo, Meg Handley, Rick Koppelman, my homegirl Anna Roger, who joined after I referred her and she’s kicking butt! Coaches JEB, Ariana, Doc Bach… and the many members of SU that keep holding each other up.
What dieting experience did you have previous to Stronger U?
Weight Watchers, Atkins, Lemonade fast, Paleo, Autoimmune Protocol, Keto, Counting calories, and tracking macros which I was calculating WAY wrong.
What were your eating habits like before joining Stronger U? Did you prep your meals? Did you eat out regularly? Did you think you were already eating healthy and in moderation?
I was eating “healthy” as many members can relate. I prepped and portioned. I was eating way too much healthy stuff and also drinking alcohol from Friday to Monday and gaining any weight I may have dropped back over and over repeatedly. I told myself that because it was clean eating, that the weight would eventually come off. Especially because I ran and lifted.
Why do you think Stronger U worked so well for you compared to other programs or diets?
It works because it’s foolproof. It’s basic science and if you follow your coach, guide, and the advice given you’re golden. the facebook community is also a huge plus for members. Making friends with similar goals and mindset as me has improved my quality of life exponentially.
What was the biggest challenge or change when you first started with Stronger U?
Limiting alcohol and not eating out as often. Social activities were hard, still are, because I enjoy eating as if I was a linebacker. I was frequently hungry because of my lupus medications, particularly Prednisone. I had to learn to differentiate between actual hunger and just cravings.
What was something you regularly ate while on Stronger U that people wouldn’t expect you to eat on a diet?
Food! Actual food! My favorites are chicken, rice, sweet potato, broccoli, and many single macro foods. I like to keep it basic and simple during the week and don’t play with recipes too much that may complicate meal prepping. I’m on a tight schedule so this works and I def don’t mind eating the same thing every day lol.
What does your typical week of eating look like? How many days a week do you meal prep? Do you have certain meals you make most often?
My weekdays are mostly simple and boring. I like boring. There’s less opportunity for screw-ups. I eat basically the same protein oatmeal every morning, usually chicken breast with sweet potato or rice for lunch, and dinner is similar but with possibly a different protein source.
If you exercise or train for a sport, did Stronger U have any impact on your training? Or did Stronger U have an impact on your decision to start exercising or training for a sport?
I have been active for a long time but was still overweight. I weight train, ran long distances, hiked, and practiced yoga. I never excelled at running but I enjoyed it. With SU and Winnie’s help, I am able to fuel myself for my favorite fitness activities while maintaining or losing weight.
How much weight did you lose with Stronger U?
50 lbs at my lightest. I’ve put on muscle mass so I’m 10 lbs heavier but my body composition is way leaner.
How did your waist measurements change with Stronger U?
Significantly. I think I was at 41″ waist when I began and now I’m at about 30″
What were 3 major non-scale victories you experienced with Stronger U?
Making the friends that I always wished I had. Good people with healthy lifestyles that genuinely enjoy my company and weirdness lol.
Outside of the scale, inches, and previously mentioned NSV’s, how has your life improved thanks to your time with Stronger U?
I’m much more confident. I have a lot more confidence to aim higher, try new things, and even explore a new career as a personal trainer. I’m not afraid to be myself anymore. I’d loooove to eventually completely be able to work solely as a trainer. Aiming particularly at those with a chronic illness that need a little help… just like I did in the past.
What are 3 tips, based on your experience, that you’d give to new members of Stronger U to help them see success early on?
Check your ego at the door, PLAN, Make friendships that serve you and your goals.
If someone is thinking about joining Stronger U, what advice would you give them before beginning their journey?
Prepare for success. By success, I mean a new life. Leave the old one behind you because you didn’t get where you are by doing healthy things. Build new habits and believe in yourself.
If you’d like to learn more about Stronger U or would like to work with us, we’d love to hear from you! You can reach out to us here.