Today I'm excited to share some stories about these successful women. They share their journeys on how they were able to overcome their body insecurities, their poor relationship with food, and how they shifted their mindsets into positivity. And so I think it's important to hear these stories to learn and to remind yourself that it could happen to everyone and that if somebody else can do it and can make a significant change then it's possible for you, too. Sounds interesting? Let's dive in.
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You're listening to Biceps after Babies radio episode number 101.
Hello and welcome to Biceps after Babies radio. A podcast for ladies who know that fitness is about so much more than pounds lost or PRs. It's about feeling confident in your skin and empowered in your life. I'm your host, Amber Brueseke, a registered nurse, personal trainer, wife, and mom of four. Each week, my guests and I will excite and motivate you to take action in your own personal fitness as we talk about nutrition, exercise, mindset, personal development, and executing life with conscious intention. If your goal is to look, feel, and be strong and experience transformation from the inside out, you, my friend are in the right place. Thank you for tuning in, now let’s jump into today’s episode.
Be inspired as we share people who further along in their journey 0:46
Hey, Hey, Hey, welcome back to another episode of biceps after babies radio. I'm your host Amber Brueseke and I am excited to be able to share some stories with you today. Some stories of people who have been able to be successful. One of my favorite things to do is to seek out stories or seek out hearing from people who have achieved the results that I want, like people who and I do this in business all the time, like people who have achieved the results that I want in business, like, I'd love to hear their story of how they got there. Because I can relate so much to them. I'm, you know, they'll tell me, you know, I was at this point in my journey, and I'm like, yes, I'm there right now. Like, that's exactly what I'm experiencing. And then it's like, they're a couple of steps ahead of me. So they can kind of tell me, and this is what I wish I would have known. And this is what made the difference for me, and this is what you know, if I could go back, I would change this. And it's like getting a little bit of a short and condensed accelerant on your progress to be able to hear from somebody who has been exactly where you're at, and who has overcome the obstacles, who has beaten the odds and been able to achieve the results that you want. And that's what today's episode is about. It's about giving you more examples of women who have her, you know, used to be right where you may be sitting today, you know, right where you're, whether you're struggling with your fitness journey or you don't know where to go next, or you're feeling uncomfortable with your body, they were there. And they've made a change, and they've taken action, and they've achieved the results that they've wanted, that they wanted. And I love to be able to come on and share these stories with you, because I think it's important to hear people who are a little bit further along in their journey, and sometimes it can feel like, which I don't think is really true, but sometimes it can feel like well, Amber is like 1000 steps ahead of me on my journey. Right? And so it can feel like, well, you know, she doesn't understand what's like or she doesn't, you know, she hasn't been there. She doesn't know what it feels like to feel uncomfortable in your body, which is not true. But, regardless, it can be easy to feel that way.
Making choices that made their lives transformed 2:49
These women that I'm bringing on to the podcast today. They were you a couple of months ago, and they were in the position and they tell their story about where they were and how they feel uncommercial in their bodies and how they had a poor relationship with food and how they didn't really ever think that things would change. And because of a couple of choices that they made, and a couple of steps that they took, they were able to create the transformation that they wanted. And so I think it's important to hear these stories and to learn from them, and to remind yourself that you know what it's possible for you, because if somebody else can do it, if someone else can make a change and create a transformation, then that means it's possible for you.
What is holding you back to get the body you want? 3:29
Now, before we dive into these stories, I want to ask you a question. Because you know, I always believe the quality of your life is determined by the quality of the questions you ask. And so the question I want you to chew on a little bit, is when you think about the body that you have, and you think about the body that you want, there's a gap there probably if you're like most women, there's a gap between the body you currently have and the body you currently want. And what would happen if you ask yourself the question, what is, like, what's creating that gap? Like what's preventing you from being able to have the body that you want? And the truth is, for a lot of women, what they think is holding them back from having the body that they want is willpower, it's like lack of willpower and lack of motivation. And if you're like most, maybe you believe, oh my gosh, there's like all these diets out there, and all these people are getting results and success, which means the diets work. But when I do them, nothing changes. Or when I do them, I can't stick to it. And so then they turn internally, and they say, Oh, well, then the problem must be me. Right? The problem isn't the diets because the diets work for some people. The problem must be me, my body is broken, or I can't stick to anything. If I could just like, if I could just have more willpower and I could stick to the diet, then it would work.
The problem is not you! 4:49
And if that's you, and you're at this place where you think that you are the problem, right that your body is broken or that you just need to have more willpower, you need to have more motivation. Here's what I want to tell you, the problem is not you. The problem isn't a lack of willpower. It isn't a lack of motivation. It's that you are trying to follow a plan that was not created for you, or by you. Right, like, who created keto, I don't even know. But they sure as heck didn't go and meet you at your house and learn about your life and your goals and your lifestyle and your body and create a plan for you. Right? It's just like this generic cookie-cutter plan that everybody's supposed to follow, and everybody's supposed to get results. Like, we all know that that doesn't work. That's like saying that you can just have a clothing store with like one clothing size, and everybody should be able to shop there. It doesn't work like that. We all know it doesn't work like that. And so what happens is we have these like generic, just rules that people are expected to follow. And then we get mad at ourselves when we can't follow the rules and when it doesn't produce results. The problem is not you.
A plan that works is a plan customized for you 5:56
The problem is that you are trying to follow a plan that was not created for you or customized for you for your body for your goals and for your lifestyle. And what would happen if you did have a plan? A plan that yes, was effective, but also a plan that you enjoyed, and was fit to your lifestyle? Like, wouldn't that help you to be so much more successful than you wouldn't have to rely on willpower, then you wouldn't have to rely on motivation, you would have a plan that you wanted to execute because it was your plan. It was for you and it was something that you enjoyed. And that is exactly what is possible for you.
Let’s hop into the stories 9:18
Alright, without further ado, let's hop into those stories. And as you're listening, I want you to hear yourself in these stories, okay, because one of these women is probably going to resonate with maybe where you're at on your journey. And I want you to listen to what the pivotal point was for her, how she got to where she is today, because you can take the same actions, and you can take the same steps and you can also be successful in your transformation.
Kristina Knudsen 9:48
My name is Kristina. And I'm recording this because it freaks me out and I feel like Amber would be excited for me that I'm doing it. When I found biceps after babies, I was two and a half months postpartum and I was giving myself grace, you know, I was breastfeeding, but I was finding myself a good 30 pounds over my pre-baby weight, it was my second child. And it took me a long time to lose the weight with my first child. It took me over a year closer to 15 months to kind of feel comfortable in my body. And so I didn't necessarily need to do anything drastic, but I just wanted to make sure that I was kind of taking efficient steps to take care of myself as well as get my body sort of back to a healthy weight. So I did find that I was fluctuating a lot, up till finding the podcast and joining Macros 101. And back I would have anywhere from 1200 calories in one day to 3000 calories in one day and I was just all over the place and really struggling to just to stick to a plan or do anything. And so I think that the program really resonated with me because Amber was really big on talking about just taking action, whatever that looks like, maybe it's messy, but just do something. And so that's kind of just where I started. And then we enter into the pandemic and the quarantine and I think it just really gave me something to focus on. So I started out with a cut and I was cutting at 1900 calories and I found that actually hard to stick to so I just kind of kept upping my calories and I ended up sitting at about 2200 calories for a majority of my cut and I was able to make a lot of physical changes. I lost 17 and a half inches and close to 16 pounds and I made a lot of actually think I was my body was recovered conditioning a little bit too so I'm looking a lot more muscular even though that doesn't always happen in a cut and I'm feeling a lot leaner and I'm still a good 10 pounds away from probably where I want to be eventually but I feel really good with where I'm at and then starting my reverse.
Kristina Knudsen 12:34
So I just had a lot of things that the successes that I've had have been both mental and physical. I have been able to let go of an all or nothing mentality that I've had for a long time with exercise and fitness. That started out in college, I was a rower and I would have to cut weight to make weight for my boat because I rode it in a weight class. So it was, you know, I was always kind of just trying to get as light as possible for that. And so I think it just kind of sparked a mentality with fitness that I was always cutting. And then you add in pregnancy and you just kind of feel out of control of everything.
Kristina Knudsen 13:27
So another big mental shift that I learned from Amber was or Macros 101, I guess, was that you don't have to do everything all at once to make progress. And it's also okay to just take action wherever you're at, in the right direction, even if it's just doing something really small. And then that leads to, you know, more and more change as you get more comfortable with your new habits. So that has been very helpful for me. If I have a day where I am not perfect, I am still able to see results and move in the direction that I want to move in. Something else that happened have I had a really bad back injury when I was pregnant. And so I've actually spent a majority of this Macros 101 and Beyond Macros course healing, and I really feel like I've been able to heal from the inside out, and I've had the proper nutrition to heal my body. So I'm able to participate in CrossFit style workouts now at six months postpartum. And I have a very strong core and I've been working with a physical therapist, and a personal trainer to get that back. But I do think that having the nutrition was very helpful.
Jen Stem 14:50
Hi, my name is Jen and I joined the Macros 101 back in April, right at the start of the shutdown of the pandemic and all of the craziness that was going on. And a little bit about me, I am a mom of a four-year-old boy and a one-year-old girl. And so in April, I was still nursing my daughter and I had just found myself in a really unhappy place with who I was and the way I looked, and just really more the way I felt and felt about myself. And so I had been following Amber and I listened to her podcasts, and I had tried counting macros back after I had had my son, and I could just never be really consistent with it. And so I was really frustrated because I typically am a very, you know, disciplined and consistent person and I was feeling really frustrated because I've never been able to achieve consistency with nutrition. I've always been an emotional eater, an overeater, someone who's pretty much always been overweight and unhappy, you know, just with how I felt and so I was actually up overnight nursing my daughter found myself you know, scrolling on Instagram and I saw you know it was the last day to join Macros 101 and so right there overnight I said you know what this is it I'm just gonna do it. I actually had to tell my husband the next day, hey you know spend some money on this program and but I was just so ready you know to try something different and I loved you know Amber's podcasts and just her way of motivating and encouraging and teaching so I kind of jumped in last minute last night and then and then had a little bit of that oh no you know what have I done that you know now I gotta follow through because I've spent this money during a pandemic. And so I am so happy I did that because Macros 101 has been such a game-changer for me. And so through the last couple of months, I did my first cut for 12 weeks. I lost 28 pounds and you know I dropped a pant size. My clothes are fitting better but outside of just those physical changes also getting more energy, which is amazing to be chasing around two kids now at home while also having to work and maintain my job and all of that.
Jen Stem 17:11
So having more energy, but really the mental shift was the biggest change for me. And the biggest thing that I gained and learned through Macros 101, and why I love and believe in it so much. And so the program has just broken down so simply. And for me, I learned man, it wasn't so much that I was disciplined in all these other areas of my life and lacked discipline or consistency but learning what roadblocks I was putting in my way what ways I was as Amber refers to it, you know, pushing the brakes for my own life and my own journey and being able to discover that through the belief section of Macros 101 has been so life changing for me, not just in this area, but for my whole life and in every area and so for the first time, I feel like you know, outside of nutrition and the scale and all of that, discovering the worth that I have, and not just looking at myself and feeling lousy and disappointed and discouraged anymore, but instead just having that belief like a true genuine, to the core belief that I can I can do this and that my worth doesn't come from, you know, just the scale and and all those different meanings, you know, we as women can sometimes put around, whether it's weight loss or appearance or all of those different things. And so, for me, Macros 101 has been a game-changer. I'm now in the alumni of beyond macros, one on one and continuing that in the midst of my first reverse and learning that it's not always about, you know, cutting out the food and living in this place of like, oh, if I eat less, then it'll be better. But learning how to really feel my body, learning how to have goals, learning how to ask better questions and all of this and so I'm so grateful for Macros 101. I'm so grateful for this journey for Amber and the coaching that she provides that group coaching is just amazing so I am so grateful I'm a life changed forever and my kids get a better mom, my husband gets a better wife and I get to provide myself a better me. What more could I want, you know in life so I'm so grateful I love Macros 101 and everything that it encompasses and has given me.
Emily Shupe 24:32
My name is Emily and I can truly say that Macros 101 has changed my life. It changed how I think about food, and it changed how I view my body. I joined Macros 101 in April of 2020, after a period of feeling uncomfortable in my body and not sure how to change it. I have always been the type of person who has worked out, but I haven't always paid attention to nutrition. In fact, I would say I heard that ever paid attention to nutrition I felt like I ate healthily. I ate fruits and vegetables. I love ice cream. I love sweets and I still do. And I always had worked those in but I felt like I had a fairly balanced life. But I always was a little bit self-conscious about certain aspects of my body. But it wasn't until after I moved out of my parents’ house after college and I got married, that I started feeling actually uncomfortable in my body. And part of that was due to the fact that my mom and my sisters noticed that I was looking different. And I felt different in my body and they had a very nice conversation with me about how I was kind of letting myself go and not really be healthy like I should. So that prompted me to work with an individual coach in October 2019. And I loved this coach as a person but her training style didn't get me the results that I wanted, and I don't think it was fully her fault, but I didn't really understand why macros weren't working for me. I didn't understand why if I stepped my numbers all week long they didn't work and then that just led me to the cycle of seeing my numbers throughout the week and then binging on the weekends not seeing progress and then struggling down into that cycle again.
Emily Shupe 26:21
So in April 2020, I was frustrated. I thought that I just didn't understand macros, and I needed to know the why behind it. I need to know the science and I need to understand what I could do to make macros work for me. So when I saw that Macros 101 was opening, I messaged Amber, I talked to her about it. I wasn't 100% sure that this was the program for me, but she really made me feel competent, and I really trusted her. I had been listening to her podcast for a while and I knew she knew what she was talking about. I just wasn't sure that what she was talking about would work for me, but I decided to take the plunge and join Macros 101 and I am so glad I did. I did an 11 week cut in the program and I lost five pounds in six and a half inches before reversing up to maintenance where I'm staying for the rest of the year and focusing on a muscle-building base. So those are my physical results.
Emily Shupe 27:10
But I'm really more proud of my mental results than I am my physical. I went from feeling like I had to be “good all week long” to be able to enjoy treats to work in a treat in my day, every single day. I went from viewing vegetables and viewing the healthy foods as something I had to have to something that I get to have to nourish and feel my body well. I switched from a scarcity mindset when it comes to food to an abundance mindset. And if you haven't had that switch yet, it is something amazing. I can't recommend Amber’s program enough honestly, because without it I would have never thought about food and my body in the way that I do now. I just don't feel restricted. I don't know how to phrase it other than I don't feel restricted and I still feel comfortable in my body. There. definitely still things I'm working through and things that I'll continue to work on when it comes to food and even my body image and mindset. But overall, my thoughts around myself and food are 10 times better. I'm in a muscle-building phase right now. And instead of focusing on my body and making it smaller and making it tinier to fit into what society has classified as what's appropriate for a woman's body, I'm focusing on how much weight I can lift in the gym. I'm actually enjoying the food that I'm eating. And I'm just really focusing on feeling confident and comfortable in my body and feeling it well. I think macros could be used for everyone. It's something that I never thought I would say, yeah, counting macros changed my life, but it really has, and going through life with the food freedom that I have and the confidence in myself has changed my life not just when it comes to food and not just when it comes to eating, but when it comes to feeling confident as a person, and I'm so grateful for that.
Llaura Brown 29:03
My name is Llaura and I'm the alumni of the macros 101 April 2020 group and a current member of beyond macros. I started counting macros back in 2016 and I've been off and on since then I've had two babies in the past four years. I have followed so many different macro coaches, I followed so many different programs. I've actually been following Amber since 2016 as well and I've always really liked everything that she said and then when she started doing Macros 101, I wasn't quite ready to take that initial jump and then I had some serious you know, I felt really left out I wanted to be involved and so as soon as April opened up, I had signed up to do it. And I had signed up to do Macros 101 because of something that Amber said, when she was promoting the program she talked about how if you do this program, you will never have to pay another macro coach again and over the course, you know of my four years off and on tracking macros, I probably have paid, I don't know about four to five online calculators or coaches to calculate macros for me because I was really set on having perfect numbers. And what I didn't realize is that there's no such thing as perfect numbers. And what I realized in Macros 101 is what will be a perfect number or what you can be the most consistent with. And so even when I signed up for Macros 101, I knew that Amber would teach us to calculate our own macros. That was the big draw for me, but still, even then when I'd signed up, and I didn't immediately get like a questionnaire to fill out for a coach to send me my macros. My thoughts are kind of like, what the heck why am I not getting my macros even though like it was clearly stated, I just was so dead set and I felt like I just paid money and what if I was going to do it wrong and I didn't know how to set my own macros, and I had a lot of those fears and through Macros 101 I obviously was able to figure out how to calculate my own macros. But also, as I talked about before, have that mindset that there is no such thing as perfect numbers, your perfect numbers are, what you can be most consistent with like numbers aren't magic. Consistency is the magic in tracking.
Llaura Brown 31:17
And so there are three major things that I've learned in Macros 101, and then now and beyond macros, and that first one is to take emotion out of the scale. I was really tied to the scale at the beginning. And honestly, it's something I'm still struggling with, but it's something I'm really progressing with and currently working through. And I've mentioned this to Amber and the coaches but I was very grateful that no one just told me to throw out the scale, screw the scale-like no talk like that because for me what's really been rewarding and my process with trying to take the emotion out of the scale is to actually weigh myself every day into practice not having emotion with my weight. And I think that's something that the coaches really just push and suggest is, you know, it's your mindset that matters the most. It's not the number on the scale. It's your mindset and how you handle that number. And so that was one of the big things I learned. The second big takeaway from Macros 101 has been reversing. So I started Macros 101 in a cut. I did an eight-week cut, and then it kind of just went haywire for a little bit after that, and didn't really try it for a couple of weeks, I was hesitant because my scale went up about three pounds. And as I said, I'm working through the scale, and it was still kind of hard to get over that number. But Amber and the coaches really pushed me to reverse and I am so, so grateful that they pushed me into reverse. I'm eating more food, I am rebuilding my relationship with the scale and I'm really learning that I couldn't be in a cut forever. Up until this point, with the exception of my pregnancies. I was only always in a mindset to lose, lose, lose, when really my end goal, and my fitness journey is to be at a point that I don't need to track at all and that I can just become to was my weight. And so to be like that, I need to process that now and that's wherever reverse has really stepped in. And the last thing that's really helped me with Macros 101 is it has really healed my relationship with food. I don't look at food as good or bad anymore. I don't look at food as unhealthy or healthy, you know, I look at it as more nutrient-dense or not nutrient-dense. And I say this after I have just eaten my nightly bowl of ice cream, I can have that and I can still see results and I can still see my numbers and I don't feel deprived at all. And it's really just taking the emotion out of good and bad food. And that has helped me heal my all or nothing mentality that I had had with food. You know, before I would eat two Oreos and binge and that was it, but now I can see you know, I can have things in moderation and it's really healed my relationship. So I'm so grateful for Macros 101 and beyond macros and the coaches and the Facebook community. It really is an excellent group of women that have really pushed me to follow my goals and achieve things I never thought were possible.
I hope you enjoyed listening to those stories. And more importantly, I hope that you had a takeaway. Maybe you heard something in one of the stories where you're like, yeah, that's where I'm at right now. And you could listen and hear what the steps were that that woman took, that maybe you could take right now in your journey. That wraps up this episode of biceps after babies radio. I'm Amber now go out and be strong because remember my friend, you can do anything.
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