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This week our Stronger U Member Spotlight is shining down on Alison Mansfield Christenson, who worked with Coach Ariana Scalfo!

What’s your name? (First and last names, pretty please)

Alison Mansfield Christenson

Tell us a little about you in 5 sentences or less. Where are you from? Are you a parent? What are your hobbies? Anything unique about your life that you want to share?

I live in Lagrangeville, NY. I live in the house that I grew up in with my husband, Mark, of 31 years. I am a parent to Kyra, she is 29 years old. Kyra is married to Joe, and they have an absolutely gorgeous 4-year-old son, Ottavio “Otto”. Kyra and Joe are expecting their next child, April 2019. I do not really have a hobby… I sing in a singing group, Singing Songbirds. It is comprised of mostly young people with special needs and a family member. My parents were born and raised in Ireland, came to US in 1959.

What led you to join Stronger U?

I have been frustrated with my weight for many years… Like the rest of the people on this program. I gained 50 lbs when I was pregnant with my daughter, but hello! That was 29 years ago. No excuse, I know… I’ve fluctuated up and down over the last 29 years. Sometimes, really good weight loss… Then I would gain it all back PLUS! A very good friend, Lauren Frankel Hann, started posting pics on FB, “bragging” about her success with this program. I was pulled in!!!!

What dieting experience have you had previous to Stronger U? Was there a reason you were or were not successful? Why did you stop?

I’ve done… Where do I start?? Weight Watchers: semi-successful (gained it all back) Jenny Craig: REALLY successful (gained it all back); I signed on 2 different times with 2 different women at my CF gym who are “nutrition coaches” who used macro counting. Spent HUGE $ and didn’t lose an ounce. I couldn’t grasp the macro thing. Not until I joined SU did it sink!

It’s clear Stronger U worked for you. Why do you think Stronger U worked so well when other programs or diets may have not?

I always thought that I needed an actual menu to follow in order for a “diet” to work for me. I never realized that I could follow what I wanted to eat and track it to make it work.

Can you give some insight into your eating habits BEFORE joining Stronger U?

Well… first of all, I don’t believe I ate enough. I CERTAINLY did not eat enough protein! I always thought that if I stayed away from “carbs and fat” weight would come off! Not so! Also, I never kept track of what I ate in a day.

Now that you’ve joined Stronger U, how have your eating habits changed?

Eating is MUCH easier now! I program in my foods and then there is no guesswork.
I am still not 100% sure about when I eat out that I am doing things correctly, however, I feel I have to live my life. I don’t eat out often, but when I do, I try to choose wisely and do the best that I can to enter in MFP.

If you exercise or train for a sport, what does a typical week look like? Did Stronger U have any impact on your decision to start exercising or training for a sport?

I still regularly go to a local Crossfit gym, Crossfit845. I have been a member there since January 2013. I go to the 6 a.m. class, an average of 4 to 5x per week. I also have been meeting a non-CrossFit friend at Planet Fitness 1x per week for some extra cardio. Would like to bump that up to more than 1x per week starting next week, perhaps 2 to 3x per week.

I have done many 5k runs in my lifetime. Never any further than 5k tho, and have no desire to do so. I have done many obstacle races. Perhaps there is a Spartan in my future, not sure…

How much weight did you lose with Stronger U?

35 POUNDS!!!!

How did your waist measurements change with Stronger U?

I’ve lost 10 inches in my waist!!

What were 3 major non-scale victories you experienced with Stronger U?

The ability to wear a belt comfortably; more comfortable being able to do burpees; being told I look like my grandson’s mom, not his grandmother!

Has your change in body weight or composition improved other areas of your life? If so, explain what areas and how.

Well… I needed to buy all new clothes! That’s an improvement in my book! I have always been active, but my CF workouts have improved and certainly doing burpees (HATE them) are a little easier when you have less belly fat to deal with! I also feel I am able to keep up with my 4-year-old grandson better.

Are there any tips or advice you’d give to new members of Stronger U to help them succeed early on?

DON’T GET DISCOURAGED!!!! We have all been there at the beginning when perhaps things don’t seem to be going as well as you thought. Or as well as the other people’s journeys are going. Don’t think about anyone else but yourself! Don’t compare yourself! BE YOU!

If someone is thinking about joining Stronger U, what would you tell them?

100% YES! It is the best program out there! This is the place to be to get the best nutritional guidance in the world, SU!!!

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