We have another Everyday Inspiration in the house!
Truth be told, I’m lucky to have many Everyday Inspirations around me. Getting time to interview people and write frequently right now is a luxury…..that only happens every so often, because, you know, life :). I feel like one lucky lady to have so many people in my life that are awesome and inspiring! Like we know from the first interviews, an Everyday Inspiration is someone who inspires me (and likely others!) to keep pushing on in my quest to live a healthy, whole, happy life. These inspiring folks are day in, day out living their lives with a major investment in themselves, and are committed to healthy habits that work for them. Every single day.
This one comes to me by way of good old-fashioned small town living. Those are the best, because you know “of” people, but then suddenly you meet them and can’t believe it took you this long to get to know them better! I see this one kicking ass around town, and kicking ass in the gym! And…..she kicks ass weekdays (and everyday!!) in her home, working out with her kids by her side.
Jackie is a stay at home mom meets home workout extraordinaire meets runs a household successfully meets future Tough Mudder! Basically, she is totes rad.
I asked Jackie a ton of questions (personal ones too!). Here is what she had to say……
Did you have a wake-up call moment? Like, something or someone inspired you to make a change? Or did you just decide to make a lot of small changes?
I guess seeing my mom’s battle with early onset Alzheimer’s and how she changed both inside and out was what really inspired me to do something. As her disease progressed, the mom I knew was fading away. Alzheimer’s took her sparkle and glow, her silliness, her beautiful smile. I felt as though the more we lost her the more I couldn’t remember who and what she was. The pictures I have of her living her life is what I use to remind me of who she was, they are what keeps the mom I know and love with me even now that she is gone. But then I realized should I be dealt the same fate as my mom, my kids won’t have ANY pictures of me. Pictures of me looking happy, pictures of me with my husband, of me playing and being silly with them. I rarely let people take pictures of me because I was not comfortable with the way I looked. I didn’t want those images of me carved in stone, so to speak, because I always thought I’ll change, I’ll lose weight then I’ll be comfortable with pictures. But I wasn’t changing, I wasn’t losing weight. I was never getting those pictures and that scared the hell out of me! My kids wouldn’t have something that might provide them with some comfort and peace if I didn’t do something. I needed to get my nutrition in line because that was what was most out of control.
Tell us about how you view yourself now versus a few years ago? Anything from how you view your body, your prioritization of your health and wellness, and any lessons you have learned along the way.
I now view myself as capable. I feel like I could do just about anything. My mindset now is: Maybe I physically can’t do “it” right now, but with training and dedication I will get there.
Now I prioritize my workouts. I mostly workout in the morning after breakfast. I don’t schedule other activities or appointments during that time unless absolutely necessary. It’s become just a part of my daily tasks and I actually get upset if I’m not able to get my morning workout in. In the past it was easy to fill my day with other thing in order to give myself an excuse to not workout. I also strive to not go more than two days without really moving my body.
Tell us about your current training routine. What does it all entail?
I workout about 30 min per day, 5 days a week. Mostly I do videos at home. I’m crazy about many of the Beachbody fitness programs. Some of my faves are T25, Insanity Max 30, and TurboFire. I also attend TMWR’s S.T.R.E.N.G.T.H once a week which has inspired me to lift more and lift heavier. I also hit up the cardio kickboxing class held at TMWR. I love, love, LOVE this class! I try to do one active recovery day per week, which usually is yoga or some sort of stretching. I truly believe in a balanced fitness program – strength, cardio, and flexibility.
What is your biggest motivator?
Being a good example for my kids is a huge motivator, but I think my biggest one is to be able to say to myself, “BOOM! Look what you just did!” I love getting (not to quote Kanye West, but I will) harder, better, faster, stronger!
What do you do to pump yourself up when the last thing you want to do is a workout or prepare a healthy meal?
It’s not often that I need to pump myself up for a workout because working out keeps me sane! All the DVD workout programs I do come with a workout schedule and I rely on those to keep me on track. I have them up on my fridge and cross off each day I complete. If I’m not feeling up to a particular workout I just do it so I can cross it off. Sometimes it’s just the little things! When I get to the end of the calendar, which are usually 60-90 days i say, “You just did that!”
I try to keep my fridge and cupboards stocked with healthy foods. I find if I prep ahead of time I always have a healthy meal ready to heat up if I don’t exactly feel like making one. Sometimes I don’t feel like eating a healthy meal so I don’t. I just try to choose healthy most of the time.
What’s your favorite exercise?
Right now my favorite exercise is cardio kickboxing at TMWR. It really pushes me to work hard. I like that it combines strength, cardio, speed, and agility. And honestly, I love kicking, kneeing, and punching the sh*t out of stuff!
Do you weigh or measure yourself, and why?
I haven’t weighed or measured myself for a couple of months now. While I was losing weight I weighed weekly – why not when it’s going in the direction that makes you feel great, right? When I got to a healthy weight for me I got a little messed up in the head. I wasn’t losing anymore so I didn’t have that number to define my “success” for the week. At one point, I think I wanted to lose a little more, but in order to do that I was going to have to be crazy strict with eating – no extras. I did try that but I wasn’t happy doing that, which would lead to bingeing on less than desirable foods. I didn’t need to lose anymore but I needed something to tell me that all the work I was doing was doing something. So I started focusing more on strength and what I could do with my body. I’m sure I’ll weigh myself at some point again, but for right now I’m choosing to not let that number consume me. As long as my pants fit – I’m good with that.
Tell us about your eating habits.
I began following a nutrition program last spring. It’s not really a diet, it’s more about teaching you what foods are better fuel and in what portion.
For breakfast I almost always eat 2 eggs with mushrooms, onions, peppers. I love making egg muffins ahead and then I all I have to do in the morning is heat them up. Each muffin equals one egg and 1/2 cup of veggies. I eat at least two egg muffins. I also eat toast or fresh fruit with my eggs in the morning. For my morning/post workout snack I drink a protein shake combined with kale and banana. Lunch is generally a protein, veggie, and carb like a huge plate full of greens with chicken breast, quinoa, feta cheese, and a vinaigrette dressing. Afternoon snack is always hard for me, I crave crackers and snack foods. I try to choose an apple with peanut butter or toast with avocado smeared all over it. Sometimes it’s plain oatmeal with strawberries. Dinner is also a protein, veggie, and carb combo. I like turkey chili, turkey meatloaf, or simply a big hunk of meat with sautéed veggies and brown rice. If I go a little crazy about at a meal or for a whole day I tell myself, I ate what I ate and move on.
Be honest, everyone has a favorite food indulgence…what’s yours?
Do I have to pick one? I love food! I like sweets and any chip with a dip. Salty starchy foods are a comfort food to me. I used to get excited for when the kids were in bed – it was like a license to binge on junk food! I still eat chips and sweets, but I try to not keep them in the house.
If you could give one piece of advice to someone beginning a body or life transformation, what would it be?
Find some sort of movement that you at least kind of like and make it a priority. Don’t let it be something you can cross off your schedule because something else came up. Also don’t give up on your day or your plan if you indulged more than you intended to. Just move on.
How have you changed since beginning your journey?
I feel happier! I’ve begun to see myself for what I can do instead of what I don’t like. I think I don’t let the little things bother me as much as they used to. I’m more of fun as a mom (and wife too!). Since I began taking better care of my fitness and nutrition I have noticed that I take better care of what’s in my head. When negative thoughts about the way I look creep into my head it’s easier for me to throw them out now.
Wait….just one more item we need cleared up…True or false: You check out your “gun show” in the mirror every once in a while.
You know it!! You gotta check out the pipes every once in a while! My kids even check out their “gun show” once in a while!
Anything else you would like to share?
As a stay at home mom of 3, I know how hard it can be to get to the gym to exercise. When I first started working out my kids were so little it was hard to do anything other than workout at home. For me, doing workouts at home is doable, even with my kiddos running around and climbing all over me. It may seem daunting to try to fit exercise into a busy schedule but it doesn’t have to be long. When I first started sometimes my workouts were only 20 min. Eventually my kids got used to our schedule and they know that after breakfast mom’s going to exercise. It’s not perfect everyday. Some days I have to stop to change a poopy diaper or get someone water or break up a fight. The more I kept exercise as part of our day the easier it got for everyone.
Jackie, thank you SO MUCH for sharing a little bit about you and your life! You are very real about the fun stuff and about the not-so-fun stuff, and it is so much fun having you a part of my tribe!