We are now 20 days into The 30-Day Exercise Challenge…Level 3, here we come! A few days ago, I brought you a Day 15 update from our forerunner, Toni. Today, I give you Estefanie. Y’all wait until you see her pictures from just FIFTEEN days with Jillian! Unbelievable! If you’re not a part of this group, now is the time. The new challenge begins on September 15…plenty of time to get prayed up before Jillian takes ahold of you. Bless her heart. Bless my heart. Bless all the hearts.
PIN THIS, y’all!
AinW: Hi! I’m so glad you’re in the group! Would you mind sharing the city where you live, your age, and a little about your weight loss/health/fitness journey before The 30-Day Exercise Challenge, including your fitness level before starting?
City: Casa Grande, AZ
Age: 24 (turning 25 in about 2 months)
Fitness level, etc. before The Challenge: Before the challenge, I would go to a Zumba class about once a week sometimes twice a week if I woke up on time. I also tried another challenge and to be honest I didn’t get that motivated with it as I am with this challenge. So the fitness level I was at before this challenge was pretty much nonexistent.
AinW: One of the things I love about this Challenge is that you can make it your own. Choose whichever program or plan works best for you! Which exercise program did you choose (i.e. 30-Day Shred, T-Tapp, other) during The Challenge?
Estefanie: I decided to do The 30-Day Shred for this challenge. I’ve tried to do this DVD before but would always quit before I got to the 2nd level. I needed that push to finish this DVD once and for all.
AinW: What do you like about that program?
Estefanie: What I like about The 30DS the most is the fact that I can feel the burn instantly, and that I am working multiple muscle groups at once. I also like that you can actually see yourself get stronger, and gain endurance in matter of days.
AinW: What do you hate about it?
Estefanie: Does JM’s voice count? Totally joking. She scares me. I find that she is a bit on the nagging side on level 1, so I had to put the DVD on mute and just blast some music for my sanity. On level 2 though, she seems a bit more encouraging. No idea what level 3 is going to be like. Also, I don’t like the fact that the DVD makes you realize just how much you jiggle haha.
AinW: What are some of the obstacles or challenges you’ve overcome in completing The Challenge daily?
Estefanie: I think the hardest part for me was the motivation to actually get up and do the DVD. But then that is where this awesome group comes in. I would see a group of wonderful ladies just encourage each other to get off that couch and put in some work. I felt like I couldn’t let these women down! Because of them, and of course Heather for creating this challenge, I’ve made it this far.
Another issue for me was finding time. I have two small children in school, I recently started school again, and work 5 days a week, plus I have to take in consideration of my “other half” schedule as well. So to say I didn’t know where I would fit in a workout was an understatement. It made me really get down to business and get a schedule going. And turns out I HAD time, just wasn’t using it properly. As the saying goes: “If it’s IMPORTANT, you’ll MAKE time”.
AinW: I LOVE that! What benefits have you reaped from exercising daily?
Estefanie: I think the biggest benefit I found is that once I started working out, I wanted to eat healthier and make better choices when given the chance. Also I wanted to work out even more as time went on. I started going to Zumba 3x a week on top of the 30DS. And it makes you realize that your body CAN change. My lower body is my “problem area”, and I never thought that my legs, and hips would EVER go down in size, but so far I have lost a few inches in that area! It’s a small change but to know that it can change pushes me to work harder. I was even able to raise my “goal jeans” past my knees and it stopped right underneath my butt. Before I could barely get them past my knees. I am determine to fit in those jeans by my birthday!
Here are my results so far:
Bust: – 1 ½ (great…I already don’t have anything there…)
Waist: – 1 ½
Hips: – 1
- Thigh: – 1 (don’t know how that happened)
- Thigh: – ½ (don’t know how that happened either)
- Arm: – ½ (woo hoo on my way to Jillian Michaels arms, apparently one arm at a time…)
A grand total of 6 inches overall and down 2.4 lbs!!!!
AinW: WOW! What do you believe about yourself and your body’s capabilities that you maybe didn’t know/believe before beginning The Challenge?
Estefanie: I now believe that anything is possible. I can feel my body get stronger; I can feel my body being able to push itself harder than the day before. I can see my body starting to fit in the “skinny” side of my closet. I thought I would never see all those clothes again. Before the challenge started, I’ll be completely honest with you, I lost myself. I thought I should just accept the fact that I will forever be the fat girl. I hated myself for being fat. I never thought I would ever be able to lose weight and be happy. And this challenge woke me up. I believe I can do this. I believe that my body is capable of anything, and that it can get stronger, and most importantly it is beautiful.
AinW: I am so grateful for your candor. I believe many women can relate. What are you hoping the second half of The Challenge will bring for you/your health and fitness?
Estefanie: I am hoping the 2nd half of this will bring me strength to be able to do all 3 circuits without stopping and feeling like I’m going to have a heart attack. And the motivation to. Just. Keep. Going.
AinW: What kind of eating plan have you followed during The Challenge? Do you feel like it’s helpful in the process or not and, if not, what is your plan moving forward?
Estefanie: I think this is where I had the most success out of this challenge. I started to count my calories, but ain’t nobody got time for that. So I gave up (I want to start counting again, it seems to help me lose more weight) and just started making healthier choices. I started to eat protein WITH EVERY MEAL. Plus I would have a protein shake for lunch most days. And a protein shake after working out. Those 2 shakes would give me a total of 120g of protein and not including what I would eat with my meals. I also raised my water intake. I live in Arizona, and I was already drinking almost a gallon of water a day, but now I drink that or more. I also try to eat salads, and wayyyy smaller portions. I still eat whatever I want but it’s all about portion control. I think by doing this, helped me with my bloating issues. I bloat up like a balloon very easily.
AinW: What’s the one piece of equipment you could not exercise without?
Estefanie: Right now I would say my weights. I want me some Jillian Michaels arms!! I am going to be buying a Polar F4 soon so that way I can start to see how [many calories] I’m actually burning during workouts. If only they would scream as they burned, I know I would be even more encouraged.
AinW: What’s the funniest thing that’s happened during The Challenge related to the exercise?
Estefanie: Does my thighs making clapping sounds of encouragement to push harder count? I seriously despise plank jacks and any other jumping movements.
AinW: Ugh! The jumping’s The. Worst. What has been the most encouraging or motivating factor in this process for you?
Estefanie: I think the most encouraging aspect of this process is having other people see a difference, and saying what a great job I’m doing. Only difference I can tell is in my face, other than that I don’t really see too much until I look at comparison pictures. So it’s nice to have some reassurance, especially from my other half who sees me on a daily basis.
AinW: How has being a part of The 30-Day Exercise Challenge on Facebook spurred you on to persevere?
Estefanie: I think it’s been about the accountability that this group has provided. I get a guilty feeling if I don’t work out. I feel like I let the ladies down. Everyone is so encouraging and it just makes you push yourself. Like I said before on question 5, it’s because of them and Heather that I made it this far.