Testimonial by Julie C. @ketojulez
About 7 years ago, I learned about Paleo when I started CrossFit at my brother’s gym, Vagabond CrossFit. I was overweight and I needed to get back into doing something. I have always been very athletic but my weight would tend to go up and down.
I started CrossFit slowly and my brother, Kevin O’Malley, introduced me to Paleo through Robb Wolf’s book, Paleo Solution. I got myself on track and was doing well in CrossFit and I really was trying to embrace the Paleo life. I figured out what worked for my body—discovering that just because something was “Paleo” it didn’t necessarily agree with me.
Life happened and I got married and we were ready to start a family. That started my two year journey to try to get pregnant and with that came fertility treatments, depression, anxiety, and about 40 lbs of weight gain. I was not in a great place in my life as I was just so focused on wanting to be a mom.
Long story short, I lost about 20 lbs and then found out I was pregnant with my first daughter. I had a stressful pregnancy due to some issues with my daughter but in the end we made it through and I have a beautiful little girl!
So after pregnancy, I really had a hard time with hormone balance, sleep, stress, etc. I was a mess. I did not lose my baby weight and I was having a hard time finding time for myself.
I felt so ashamed of myself and I felt trapped in my own body.
Then I found out I was pregnant with my second daughter! I tried to stay active but I was already still carrying extra weight so my goal was just to not gain too much through my pregnancies and I kept thinking man this is going to be tough to lose all this weight after I have my daughter.
After the birth of my second daughter, I was really gaining weight. I was always picking at the kids snacks (which I now realize was just an insane amount of carbs) but never feeling satisfied. Honestly, I felt like I was never actually eating a meal! I was tired and not sleeping well. I hated the feeling of waking up and feeling exhausted. I was at an all time low in my life. I felt so ashamed of myself and I felt trapped in my own body.
I really love nutrition and fitness and I really love helping others on their journey but the irony is that I could not help myself! I was living with this daily anxiety of not being here for my girls. I work in a hospital and I think that setting didn’t help my anxiety, but my fear of not being around for my girls was taking up a lot of mental space in my head. I knew that I needed to make a major change in my life.
When I began, I was 75 lbs from my goal weight. I started by telling myself you can do anything for 20 minutes. We had the set up for a little gym in our one car garage so I started small. I would do some metabolic workouts and my mindset was “just keep moving.” I would row, push myself through burpees, push presses, box jumps, jump rope.
If I was going to learn about the keto diet I needed to learn from the best
I’d heard about this “keto” thing and started researching it. I wanted to understand the diet first. One day on my instagram feed I see Robb Wolf’s Instagram page and he had a post about keto and macros.
I couldn’t believe it! I knew if I was going to learn about the keto diet I needed to learn from the best and that Robb would break it down into a science that I understand what I was doing and why it would work. I didn’t want to just save pins on Pinterest on “what is keto”. I really wanted to understand the basis of the plan.
I was about 2 weeks into keto when I stumbled on Keto Masterclass—it was great because I had lots of questions and was hopeful that my questions would be answered in this program.
The Keto Masterclass was amazing. It helped me to fine tune some things and it gave me the knowledge I needed to continue on my journey. I also signed up for the Ketogains Bootcamp after I completed the class.
I love the non-scale victories
Currently, I’m down 50 lbs and I have never felt better! I love the non-scale victories that I have achieved on keto—fitting into clothes that have not fit in over 5 years, not hiding in baggy clothes, the energy I feel when I wake up each morning and that powers me through the day, the restful sleep at night, and the decreased anxiety.
I feel like I am taking more time for myself on this journey because in order to be the best version of me I need the time to prep my food or to even workout for 30 minutes a day. We only have one life and I don’t want to live it feeling bad about myself and worried about my health.
“Strong like mommy”
I want to be the best mom that I can be and show my girls how strong I am and that taking care of yourself, physically and mentally, is very important. I love that I have the energy to be on the go with them or to have a dance party in our living room.
They are my reason for everything and on this journey I have realized that I am the best version of me when I feel good and when I feel healthy.
I love that my girls say “strong like mommy”. If that doesn’t make this all worth it then I don’t know what else would!
Jacki Keys says
I could really do with your help. I’ve started listening to your new podcast after hearing you on Stem Talk.
I am a 63 year old woman who’s a breast cancer survivor. I am about 20kgs over weight. I successfully lost 10kgs of body fat on keto about 10 years ago and put it all back on and then some. I find keto very hard and find myself craving sugar stuff that I would normally never eat.
I go on big 2 hour bike rides every week, walk my dogs 30-45 minutes a day and have started Reformer Pilates 3-4 times a week. I just can’t seem to get my eating under control and fall of the wagon every 3 days.
Jacki, the first thing I would mention is make sure you’re getting enough electrolytes on keto https://www.ketogains.com/2017/06/keto-flu-electrolyte-imbalances/
If that’s not the issue, have you tried doing a regular paleo diet instead? It could be low-ish carb, but still include some carbs. It might be worth a try for you to see if it helps with the issue.