Elements of Fitness – A Mother's Memoir

Overweight Becomes a Lean and Mean Mom of 3

I may not have introduced myself.  Some of you know me, some of you don’t…  some of you I have been friends with for YEARS and some we’ve never met but have only connected online.  I don’t like to post pictures of the kiddos and I’m not all about the selfies as much as others, but you may be able to relate better knowing that I’m a single Mom of 3 and they are my world.  We are just as busy as you and we still make the time to work out.  I keep the kids in sports to make sure they stay busy and aren’t home creating unhealthy habits.  I post a lot about fitness and nutrition but have you ever wondered why I do what I do?

Examples

Oak Creek Canyon, Sedona, AZ

Have you ever wondered what exactly I do as a fitness coach?  Have you wondered how I got here?  Have I always been  shape?  (uhhhh no – I haven’t.)  How did a stay at home Mom turn working Mom with a fitness business?

I haven’t always been into fitness.  But I have always been an athlete.  I lived and breathed gymnastics until I was about 14, then I wanted to do team sports for my school (soccer, tennis, volleyball).   I was in shape but working out was not the fun part of my day.   I used to hate running.  I would do it because a lot of sports needed the cardio conditioning but I didn’t like it, and I didn’t eat right, etc.

Before kids, I could eat whatever I wanted just like when I was a teenager and not gain a pound!  But now, that’s not so much the case.  Once I had my first child, Kaitlyn (with whom I gained 64 pounds!), I could not lose that weight.  I tried every diet under the sun, got a gym membership thinking that would help, etc.

Pregnant but still overweight

Pregnant but still overweight

But I didn’t stick with it.  My husband at the time could still eat whatever he wanted and the scale would not be affected so I would gradually go back to eating like he and I always did.  Then 7 months after giving birth we were pregnant again.  It was what we wanted because I always wanted to have my kids close in age and we knew we weren’t done, HOWEVER, I never got back to my pre-pregnancy weight first.

With baby #2, I was determined not to gain another 64 lbs!  (BTW, this before pic ——–>      was really hard to post!) I did a little working out while I was pregnant with her and I ate a lot better.  Not good, like I do now but better.  I only gained 24 lbs with Britney.

After she was born was right around the time that low carb diets were the thing.  And I was sold when I read that I didn’t need to work out, I could just eat low carb.  HA!  I dropped all the baby weight and then some!  Then it became that the only time I would work out was when I ate really bad the day before.  So now that I knew I could just eat low carb whenever I had some weight to lose I went back to eating atrociously!  Then I would work out twice a week if that.

Well as the girls were getting older, I decided to start cooking and making more home cooked meals at home.  I was a huge advocate for nursing since formulas were getting so much criticism for their ingredients and I was reading more and more about baby foods and how easy it was to make at home AND this way you knew what was going in to your child’s mouth.

That lead me to start watching and learning about the foods I was eating.  All the crap sold in the supermarket were 90% chemicals!  I started trading in the commercialized grocery stores for farmers markets and Trader Joe’s (Whole Foods wasn’t in Phoenix yet).  I also started buying organic whenever we could afford to.  I started with vegetables that grew in the ground and then meats was next.

After seeing and FEELING the results of just eating right it motivated me to want to get toned and in shape especially since I knew how to eat now!  Food was fuel now, not comfort.

Now comes the year 2007, I was in better shape then I was when I was a teenager, even had more energy then I did then.  We were running, biking, I had a gym membership where I would do spin class 2- 3 times a week, my girls and my ex and I all belonged to a dojo where we were all there at least 3 times a week.  I even taught yoga there for a while for some of the moms that had kids in the karate classes.  In June I found out that I was 4 1/2 months pregnant with Baby # 3, my son Frankie!  He was due in December!   So I had 4 short months to plan to have a baby!  But I didn’t want to stop working out.  I was mostly doing cardio anyways:  running, hiking, rollerblading, spin class, kickboxing and yoga at the dojo.

Frankie was born and I ended up only gaining 22 lbs.  My doctor towards the end was concerned that I hadn’t gained enough weight.

Then I started to want to help other Moms!  My girls started cheer and would have regular practices in a park, their Coach asked me if I would be the squad’s conditioning coach so now I started doing that every Tuesday and Thursday.  Soon after, some of the Moms of the girls recommended I do a fitness bootcamp where they could come work out.  We did and soon more and more moms showed up.  I would get the girls warmed up for cheer and then I would move over to the Moms!  It was fun.  We all created a close bond and I even helped some of them get ready to run their first marathons.

I started a blog, THIS ONE, hence why its name is Mom-related and not fitness related.  🙂  When I first created it, I started talking about tips to help breastfeeding Moms and nutrition was one of the most common posts because the questions were all closely related to the Mom being able to produce enough milk for a growing baby, etc. and then it started connecting me with women who were likeminded all across the country.

2008It was about this time that my neighbor introduced me to P90X.  Frankie was not even 2, Britney was 7 and Kaitlyn was 8 1/2.  My hands were full.  I was in shape but not getting toned.  I was still doing a ton of cardio.  P90X had weights and I knew I had to add that in.  I was always afraid of weights, always thought I would like a man, etc.  I was ready for a change.  I always wanted a personal trainer and now I had my own in MY HOUSE!!  It was amazing.

1st round of P90X

1st round of P90X

 

This was me in Cabo after the 1st round P90X.  I did the lean program and I refused to eat the P90X way.  I thought I knew more about what my body needed than this nutrition ‘guide’ telling me to eat 100 carbs a day!  At that point, I would barely eat 100 carbs in 4 days!!  I thought I had this whole fitness thing down and all I needed was to add weights.  HAHA.  I would be exhausted half way into the workout, or getting really bad headaches right after.  So I knew something was wrong.

 

 

90 days later 2nd Round P90X results

90 days later 2nd Round P90X results

The lack of carbs is why my first round didn’t get me the results I anticipated.   I added a little muscle but nowhere near everyone else’s 90 day results.  This got me so mad!  So then right away, I started the classic program and I ate exactly how it told me to, even bought Shakeology.  I was posting my results pics on Facebook and friends and family were the first to notice.  Then I started helping other people get through their first round of P90X.

After 3 rounds of P90X, I decided to switch it up with Insanity.  I loved Insanity because it was a more intense version of P90X’s cardio days and guess what I started thinking P90X was too EASY!!  On the P90X cardio days, (Tuesdays and Saturdays) I would do the Max Cardio Circuit from Insanity instead of PlyoX.

I started connecting with people on the Facebook P90X message boards and through my blog.  I was helping people get through the programs but not getting paid for it!  And then Tony Horton shared my blog post of How you know You’re Addicted to P90X.

I knew I could help other Moms too… and realize everyone can do this too.   Being a Coach has been one of the greatest blessings in my life.  It got me in the best shape of my life, I have a healthy relationship with food, I have spent more time learning about myself, learning about others, and learning ways to better help YOU.

You do not have to be a fitness expert or nutritionist to be a successful Coach.  All you need is the desire in your heart to help others.  Beachbody is all about helping others.  They provide the tools you need to change your body, the nutrition your body is craving, a Coach who is always there for you… (ME!) and the network of likeminded people that you can connect with on Team Beachbody.

If you are interested on learning more please contact me.   We do a very brief 15-20 min webinar once a week and you will see how it easy it is to do the same thing I do!

Let’s get in touch and work on You together!  What do you have to lose??  You never know, it could be supplemental income for you too OR even become your main source of income!

 

Send me an email:  at CoachChristysElementsofFitness@gmail.com

OR an Instagram:  @FitnessElements4Life

November 16, 2014 Posted by | About Me, Being a Mom, Children, Cooking, Diet and Exercise, Divorce, Eating Clean, Eating Low Carb, Family, Insanity, Me, My Low Carb Recipes, Nursing, Nutrition, P90X, P90X Recipes, P90X2, P90X3, Phoenix AZ, Pregnancy, Products That Work, Shakeology, Women Today, Women's Health, Working Moms | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

It’s Summer! Are You Bikini Ready?

This used to be a dreaded time of year for me.  It starts to get warm and you don’t realize how out of shape you are until you go try on bathing suits!  You start to remember all the holiday parties, Super Bowl parties, St Patrick’s Day, Cinco de Mayo, food you ate off your kids’ plate because they were full (I’m guilty!!), and every other party that put those extra pounds on.  If that sounds like where you’re at it’s not too late to make a change.

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The first day of summer is June 21st!   The only motivation you need is knowing that being fit feels better than any piece of junk food or soda you’re craving!!  Do you want to look better?  Are you tired of feeling sick and tired??

For me, this is the 4th year in a row I have been able to buy a bikini for the summer season… and I’ve had 3 children so that’s a huge accomplishment for me.   I also gained 60 lbs with my first and didnt lose it til after my 2nd was born so… there’s no excuse!  You can do it too.  Women tend to believe their bodies deteriorate after giving birth and that’s JUST NOT THE CASE!    It can… but ONLY if you let it happen!

If you are overweight or even if you’re just struggling with 10-15 pounds I highly recommend The Shakeology 3 Day Cleanse along with P90x, Insanity or any other program you can stick to at least 3-4 times a week.

I’ve done both P90X and Insanity and now instead of P90X cardio days I do Insanity workouts.  The hybrid of the two give phenomenal results.

Your 6 pack is there too!  It’s just hiding.   It’s 70% nutrition and 30% exercise.  Staying away from white sugar, white flour, junk food, dairy products, carbonated drinks and alcohol all help get you those abs.  If you want more ways to do that look the right and click on Nutrition for my Recipes or you can visit me at Team Beachbody, Facebook or Instagram (@FitnessElements4Life).  I share tips, tricks and new recipes for stuffed peppers or this delicious “pot roast” made with turkey instead of beef!!

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I also write daily meal plans for those that have a hard time putting together grocery lists, let alone their meals.  Contact me today  for more information.  The meal plans I write are customized to you and your taste buds and they are only $25-$40 depending on how much guidance you need.  We also will have you keep a food diary and they adjust your meal plans each month.

It all takes time and hard work, just as any venture does.   Holler at me and lets get moving!

 

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Come check out my blog:  www.amothersmemoir.com

or Instagram at @FitnessElements4Life

 

 

 

 

May 28, 2014 Posted by | About Me, Cooking, Diet and Exercise, Dinners Kids Devour, Eating Clean, Exercise, Insanity, P90X, Products That Work, Women Today, Women's Health, Working Moms | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Good ‘Ole H2O

We all know we’re supposed to drink it, but despite that fact, it is supremely recommended for weight loss!

I love tea and I could drink all different kinds all day long.  Not only that, I could probably survive with just tea.   But that doesn’t mean you – or I – should!

athletesI also work out.  Almost every day… and when you work out regularly you are burning through more of your body’s resources faster than you realize.   Water in the human body carries nutrients to cells, flushes out toxins, sweating and in addition to that, athletes also use it for more sweating, maintaining body temperature, and building new muscle.  We all need water!

The majority of people walk around in a state of constant dehydration – and we overeat when we’re dehydrated.   I always tell clients to keep water next to them, or at least within easy reach all day long.   Because when you have water next to you, you are less likely to reach for sugary drinks, which tends to make you just want to drink more sugary drinks!  Step out of the vicious cycle.

So how much water should you drink?  Well, if you’re trying to lose weight here’s what I recommend and I know it works.  Drink your body weight, divided by 2 in ounces.   So if you weigh 136lbs, divide by 2 = 68 ounces.  That may sound like a lot but if you sip it all day long, it adds up quick and you may even find yourself drinking more.  AND yes I know, especially for us women, you’re thinking “If I drink 68oz of water every day, I will be running to the restroom every 20 minutes!”  Guess what.  You’re right.  But you want to!  That is your body flushing away fat stores, toxins, etc!  It’s a good thing!!   Then, when your body gets used to your new water consumption it won’t have to drain the bladder so often.

Believe me.  I get that not everyone likes plain water.  Especially after spending years of drinking soda.  But you’re here… and you’re still reading thus far, which means you’re probably trying to change your ways and create better habits.  With that in mind, there’s ways to make your water taste good!!  When I first started exchanging water for my sugary addictions years ago, I hated the taste of plain water.  I realized shortly after that when you have good tasting water, it makes ALL the difference in the world.  I started subscribing to a water delivery service and for a while I swore it was the “electrolytes” that were added that made it taste better.  I was wrong.  Better filters than most commercial water companies made all the difference.

Cucumber WaterThen – I started adding cucumber to it.  My favorite!  I hate lemon in my water.  In fact, it drives me crazy that restaurants assume everyone wants lemon in their water.  I can’t stand that.  I know they do it to offset the horrible taste of tap water and to kill bacteria – but ask first.

You can add whatever fruit you like!  In fact, go crazy – add a slice of fruit AND then some herbs like ginger or mint.  Yum.  Strawberries, orange, kiwi, frozen grapes, watermelon, whatever!

Point is:  drink the WATER!

February 20, 2014 Posted by | Beauty, Diet and Exercise, Discipline, Eating Clean, Exercise, Nursing, Nutrition, P90X, P90X Recipes, P90X2, P90X3, Products That Work, Skin Care, Women Today, Women's Health, Working Moms | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

The All New 21-Day FIX

21If I could provide you with a 21 day work out program that was just 30 mins daily and a meal plan that is easy to follow, uses a simple portion control system and tells you exactly what to eat (without resulting in you being starving)…and you could lose 10+ lbs in just these 21 days would you be interested?? If so HIT LIKE and comment below saying you want info!

You already know that 70% of your health and fitness is what you eat.  This program is designed to shrink your stomach using portion control and workouts that are easy to follow you won’t even realize how HARD you are actually working!

It’s that easy!!   The 21-Day Fix is comprised of 7 varied workouts, 30 minutes each for three weeks, correctly portioned containers, a meal plan and fitness calendar so you know which workout to do each day… PLUS an entire month’s supply of Shakeology – The Healthiest Meal of the Day is included as well!!!

We have literally made it so easy and very affordable now too!  If you choose to take the Beachbody Challenge with this program you will not only be entered to win cash, vacations and prizes but you will also have the chance to be the next featured Beachbody Success Story!!

We are very excited that Autumn Calabrese has decided to team up with us at Beachbody to design a program that’s easy to stick with for 21 days.  You know the old adage:   ‘Just stick with it for 21 days to make it a habit’… that goes for anything you set your mind to doing!

21_day-fixOptimize your health and fitness to reach your desired results in 21-days instead of 60 or 90-days AND eat good AND clean food!  It’s that simple!  This program comes with containers for each meal of the day so there is no more guessing and calorie counting.

This program will be available in February!  Be the first to know when its available to buy by subscribing to my blog below!  🙂

Contact me for details!  I will be starting a Challenge Group for people who want to do this together!  You can holler at me on Instagram:  FitnessElementsForLife or Facebook/ChristyPourciau

You can even go to my website and hear what everyone else is saying about it on the message boards here!

2014 has big things in store!!  Let’s keep your health a top priority!!

Shakeology

January 30, 2014 Posted by | Beauty, Being a Mom, Cooking, Diet and Exercise, Discipline, Eating Clean, Exercise, Low Fat Recipes, My Low Carb Recipes, Nutrition, P90X, P90X Recipes, P90X2, P90X3, Products That Work, Shakeology, Women Today, Women's Health, Working Moms | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

How to Make (or order) a Skinny Margarita

(Plus, read below for my recipe on making it a SuperFood Margarita!)

I’m sure if this headline caught your eye you are well aware that most delicious margaritas are at least 500 calories.     95% of those empty calories are from all of the sugar and/or high fructose corn syrup in the sour mix used or from added syrups that are added many times.

While I do not advocate getting full blown drunk if you want to have a lean and healthy body, I also want to be realistic and understand that most people have no desire to give up drinking altogether… and I believe it can be perfectly healthy to have a few drinks a couple times week.

In fact, some studies even show moderate drinking of alcohol (1-2 drinks a day 3-4 days a week) can possibly extend your lifespan and improve health.

Personally, I love margaritas but I have come to avoid them as I’ve become more nutritionally aware.   This avoidance has also made me want to try my own versions at home knowing what to avoid.  I’ve also now started to add powders and proteins (see below)!  Might as well get some added nutritional benefit!

If you want to be lean, a typical Margarita when you’re having a couple drinks with friends is one of the WORST things you can order, and all of that sugar or corn syrup is going to do nothing but go straight to your belly.

But there is a way to enjoy delicious Margaritas WITHOUT all of the sugar or corn syrup…

First, how to order a low-sugar healthier margarita at a bar:

If you’re ordering at a bar, make sure the bartender is 100% clear that you do not want any sweet and sour mix in your margarita. Make sure they don’t add any agave nectar either, as that is just pure sugar as well. There’s nothing healthy about agave nectar despite the healthy sounding name. Just tell them you want nothing but tequila, a little triple sec or cointreau, and a little club soda. And then you want 5 or 6 (or more) lime wedges to squeeze into the drink. I’ll usually use a whole lime if they can give it to me.

This modified margarita has very little sugar and even has the health benefits of the fresh limes too. You can easily save 400 calories on this compared to just ordering one of the standard Margaritas.

Now, if you want to go one step further, here is my SuperFood Margarita recipe I’ve been playing with lately… this may sound weird, but I’ve honestly had at least a dozen friends try this and every single one of them LOVED this margarita recipe!  It’s the same as above with a twist.

Christy’s Strawberry Margarita

Into a glass, mix:

1 shot of your preferred tequila

2/3rds shot of either triple sec or cointreau

the juice of 1 full lime squeezed (if you don’t have a squeezer, cut into wedges and squeeze all juice out of each)

2-3 oz of club soda and/or unsweetened iced tea

and the magic superfood ingredient: 1/2 scoopful of Tropical Shakeology (this gives you tons of powerful ingredients such as probiotics, prebiotics, greens, enzymes, exotic foods, superfood berries, and more)

Mix all of these with a spoon in an ice filled glass…. and voila, you’ve got about the healthiest mixed drink that’s possible…  and delicious too!

By adding Shakeology, you are also having 70 superfood ingredients like acai berry, wheatgrass and other greens, probiotics, prebiotics, enzymes, etc, it also has a nice fruity sweet flavor (with no added sugar) that goes perfectly with a Margarita.

I think you’ll be shocked at how delicious this is!  I’ve made it for several friends and they all wanted the recipe.

Remember that heavy drinking will definitely hurt your efforts for a lean and healthy body, but 1-2 drinks a couple days a week I think can actually be a healthy part of your plan.

Drink responsibly, and make it a healthy drink!   

April 11, 2012 Posted by | Diet and Exercise, Nutrition, Products That Work, Shakeology, Women Today, Women's Health | , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

An Ode to Stay At Home Moms!

This is for all you Stay-At-Home Mom’s out there… 

I don’t get much time these days to do this (being a SAHM and all) but I love it when I can sit down while the baby is sleeping and read a good book! 

Recently, I have been feeling a little negative about my current situation and trying to find some creative outlet (besides blogging!) that I could do in my spare time.  Then, while catching bits and pieces of the Today Show last week I heard what sounded like a knowledgable voice talking about how we should be praising the “Stay At Home Mom” and it got my attention.   

Author, Dr. Laura Schlessinger was speaking to Meredith Vieira about how SAHM’s really get a bad reputation but they should instead be given credit to forming the next generation of people. 

Me, being in need of an ego boost and an internal pep rally, went right out to Barnes & Noble to get this book.  I finished reading it the next day and I truly loved it.  It was the pick-me-up I wanted and so badly needed.

Yes, there are parts that sound a bit 1950’s but when you cut to the core of what she is trying to say it all makes sense and it is very truthful.   SAHM’s put their families as priority #1 and we rarely get credit for it.   After all, these are the women who are choosing to take responsibility for the choice they made to have a child and want to actually be there to raise that child with our own morals and views of right and wrong instead of a minimum wage day care worker.

We are also perceived as being unintelligent, lazy and/or unmotivated.  But we’re not.  We are not lazy since we know being a Mom is work 24/7,  not just 8-5  and we’re not unintelligent.  We are trying to share our intelligence and instill it in this brand new beautiful mind we’ve created.  We want to be there to teach our children the morals we grew up with, our beliefs, our truths, and our knowledge of the world so that when they are presented with a choice that could dramatically change their life they will be equipped with the skills needed to make an “intelligent” decision. 

To me, it is extremely smart to choose to be there for your children and one of the best and most important decisions a woman can make.

I am very aware of the women who have to work due to financial situations and I’m not saying we should accept just cooking, cleaning, and taking care of children all day as a means that defines us.  So please don’t be offended by what I’m saying.  If you have a skill, a talent or a dream by all means fulfill it!  But rearrange your goals and dreams around your children, not the other way around.  They are only in our care for 18 years!  In the bigger picture of life, that is not very long!  Make the most of it!

What I enjoyed most about the book is the letters and emails from other Moms that the author shared.  Heartfelt and uplifting true life stories of other moms and children brought tears to my eyes many times throughout the book.

Most importantly, it inspired me.   As I was reading it, I couldn’t wait for the baby to wake up from his nap and the girls to walk in the door from school. 

There are days I get so frustrated I want to pull my hair out, getting upset over something so miniscule, or that certain things didn’t get done that day or I am so totally exhausted by the end of the day that I think to myself that any other job would be a pleasant relief.  But then I remember there were also so many moments I would never trade in for any other job on the planet:

Those moments when your child gives you a smile or just a look of sheer happiness, moments when they would give you a kiss, a hug, or just hold your hand for no reason, or one that just happened to me the other day:  my daughter told me that when she grew up she wanted to be just like me!

Those are the moments a mother treasures forever in her heart.  They cannot be replaced.

No, SAHM’s don’t get a paycheck at the end of a very hard week.  We get hugs, kisses and an immense joy that fill our hearts so deep that money feels like… well,  just that …. money.

April 23, 2009 Posted by | About Me, Baby Care, Being a Mom, Children, Family, Me, Women Today, Working Moms | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

   

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