Hi! I am so happy you stopped by! My name is Amanda Abel and I am a mom of 2 beautiful girls and wife to 1 amazing husband! I have always been “into” health and fitness and have tried every diet under the sun and NOTHING. EVER. WORKED! I tried the no sugar diet. That lasted a week and I felt awful! I tried the low carb diet. That lasted about 2 weeks until I binged on gummy bears and decided I couldn’t live like that. I tried the clean eating diet. That lasted a little longer but I never saw results. Mainly because I was super diligent Monday-Thursday, then Friday, Saturday and Sunday I would have a free for all, eating whatever I wanted and undoing all of my progress from the week if not more. I was always taking one step forward and 2 steps back. I trained for and ran 6 half marathons and one Ragnar, eating whatever I wanted and thought that amount of exercise alone would be enough. I actually gained weight!
I have always loved lifting weights and would go to the gym and lift pretty regularly but I wasn’t fueling my body properly and never saw any changes. Also I was pretty wishy washy about my gym time. There were lots of weeks I would miss completely or go for 20 minutes so I could say I did. My philosophy was always, work hard”ish” for 2 weeks, see no results, give up and just “accept” myself the way I was. Don’t get me wrong, I honestly did get to a point of loving myself no matter what I looked like and that was a great place to be, but deep down I just wanted to look good and feel good.
In October 2015 we went on an amazing vacation to Hawaii. I had the time of my life but I was so self conscious about my weight and felt like a stuffed burrito in everything I wore. I was miserable! I vowed after that vacation that THIS WAS going to be the time that I actually stuck with a “diet” for longer than 2 weeks and I was going to get the body I wanted no matter how long it took. I let myself get through the holidays eating like crap but come the New Year, I was doing it!
January 4, 2016 was the day. The kids went back to school, husband went back to work AND it was a Monday! Monday’s are ALWAYS great days to start diets 😉 I started out by counting calories. I was eating 1300 calories a day, eating whatever I wanted within those calories, but also tried to make the healthiest choices I could. I stuck to my calories PERFECTLY, even on the weekends 🙂 I was going to the gym 5-6 times a week and pushing myself hard in my workouts. Somedays I would even work out 2 times a day! I was DETERMINED and when I am determined to do something, nothing can stop me! And guess what?? The weight FINALLY started coming off! The more weight/inches I lost, the more determined I became. I had complete tunnel vision and nothing was going to keep me from my goals. I lost 10 pounds between January-April. One of the biggest changes during that time was the mental shift I felt. It was like a light bulb had been turned on and I could see clearly everything I had done wrong in the past and I had 100% focus to stay on this track and never waver.
I was following a lot of fitness people on Instagram and started to hear about IIFYM/Macro Tracking/Flexible Dieting. I wanted to give it a try but was nervous and confused. I was so completely confused about how to do it so I started doing some research. I decided I would start tracking my macros in May and give myself a few weeks to learn everything I could about it first. May came and I was ready! I knew just enough to get started. For the first few weeks, I just stayed within my calories but would watch my macro numbers to get the hang of it. It was a lot of trial and error about what I could and could not eat. But I really didn’t stress myself out about it too much. After a few weeks I could really start making decisions about what fit in my macros and what didn’t. It became easier and easier over time. Between May 2016-March 2017, I have only lost 4 more pounds but I have seen HUGE changes in my body! Weight isn’t everything!
I am SO proud of myself in so many ways! This is a lifestyle change and something I can and will stick with for life. Will I have days/weeks that I don’t track? Definitely! Will I mess up here and there? I have and I will. Do I eat dessert EVERY SINGLE DAY? You betcha! Should that make me give up and think my “diet” isn’t working? NO WAY! I LOVE IIFYM and I want to help as many people as I can find this lifestyle and help change some lives!
Here is my one year progress picture!