My name is Laura.. I live in Charlotte NC and I am a real estate broker. I’m originally from Long Island… Lake Grove, NY. I am not a fitness professional, just blogging about fitness.. I have a lot of experience being a fit person.
My Fitness Journey
When I was a freshman in college I gained 20 pounds pretty quickly after being on my own for the first time in my life. It was not an unsolved mystery how I gained this weight. Hmmmmmm, could it have been from going up for seconds every night in the dining hall? Or maybe from the 2 large bowls of macaroni and cheese I had everyday just for a snack? or…. maybe it was the beer drinking a few times a week plus on weekends of course.. along with a late night pizza order? Not quite sure but that may be where the 20lbs came from. I was clearly over eating on a consistent basis and that is how I gained the weight! When I went home for Christmas I couldn’t even get my jeans on.. I had to wear my sweat pants. At this point I had a decision to make.. I could keep over eating and buy new clothes.. or I could stop indulging and get back to my normal size. It was sooooo much fun eating all that food but I really didn’t want to wear it around for the rest of my life so I decided that I would get back to fitting in my jeans again.
How did I lose the weight? I used a very simple method. I ate less. I stopped having seconds at dinner.. I stopped having all the macaroni and cheese for snacks, and I stopped the late night pizzas. I never starved myself.. I never cut out carbs.. I never cut out fruit or any other food group… I didn’t even stop the drinking.. I just cut down. I ate less. I didn’t even exercise. I didn’t have a car so walking to class everyday was my exercise and it was actually quite a bit of walking. This was a very basic level of fitness to accomplish but it worked for me. I stopped over eating.. I ate the appropriate amount of food for my size body and I did some walking everyday. I finished up college still wearing my normal sized jeans and haven’t gained weight since.
After college I had an office job and my life changed a lot in how active I was compared to being on campus. I was very very inactive. I sat at a desk all day and then went home, ate dinner and watched TV while eating a bag of doritos. I really didn’t get any exercise at all. By my second year out of college I really started to notice how flabby I looked. I still wasn’t over weight but just really jiggly and very much not in shape. I made a new year’s resolution that year to start exercising and I have stuck with it since then without fail. I started out doing exercise videos 4x a week. I was never really looking for any specific changes other than not getting in even worse shape. I had low expectations but I kept at it and became used to the feeling of regular exercise. I was stronger, I had more energy and overall felt better than I did when I wasn’t getting any exercise. I stuck with my videos and I never used weights because I didn’t want to get big muscles and I really did think that was what would happen. At this point I knew very little about eating right. I was still eating tons of processed food and I had no idea that I could change the look of my body and have that ‘toned’ look just from changing my food choices. Eating processed food gave me that skinny/jiggly look.. aka skinny fat… even though I was working out, I did not appear to look ‘fit’ because I didn’t have the ‘eating right’ thing down yet.
I had been exercising consistently for years and I was in pretty good shape but I was still sort of jiggly and thought I could be in better shape. I started learning more about eating and that is when I found out that there was a more advanced level in eating that I was not doing. I had mastered getting enough food to eat and not over eating.. but I did not yet understand that eliminating things like fast food, processed food and junk food would change they way my body looked entirely. I used to put butter and mayonnaise and cheese on everything and I always had fancy starbucks drinks, cookies and muffins.. Sometimes pizza and usually some alcohol on the weekend. This is when I learned by my own experience that abs are made in the kitchen. I had stopped eating all that junk and drinking for about a month or so and people at the pool in my apartment complex started asking me how many sit ups I did and what my ab routine was. I was really confused at first because I was not doing any sit ups or ab work and still doing my exercise videos exactly the way I had been for years. What happened was that once I eliminated all the junky stuff from my eating.. my abs started to show and I didn’t even know it.. but other people did and they all had absolutely no clue that it was because of my eating right, and not my ab routine which I still don’t have. And now to this day… as many times as I try to explain that I don’t do sit ups and my abs show because of the way I eat… nobody believes me and they all think I’m crazy or who knows what and still want to know about ab exercises. That is why all those silly ab contraptions on TV always have commercials to sell getting ‘abs’… because very few people know that you get abs that you can see or ‘toned’ abs by not eating any junk or crap… You could do 1000 crunches a day and you won’t see abs until you ditch the junk.
Also from my experience with trial and error.. I learned that lifting weights made my entire body tighter and stronger… but really not bigger at all. I’m still wearing the same size clothes I wore freshman year in college.
I started blogging about my fitness journey in 2005. At the time I really didn’t even think I was in that great of shape. When I started posting photos I had a lot of feedback from people saying that I was inspiring and motivating them because they couldn’t believe I was in such good shape at age 37 (at the time). Now that I’m 45 it should be even more motivating.. because if I can keep my old ass fit then anybody younger than me can!! I’ve never really been athletic or sport like so it was really hard to believe that anyone was being inspired by my fitness accomplishments.
When I started working out at age 23, I really had no idea that I would be able to still be fit when I reached my 30’s or 40’s because I had never seen a fit person in real life let alone an old one. Its become my normal to be fit for so long and I don’t know any other way. If I don’t work out, I don’t feel right and as much of a pain in the ass as it can be to keep up with working out consistently when real life can get so busy.. its totally worth it. It would have been nice when I was in my 20’s if I had seen an example of a fit geezer like me so I knew what was possible.. but I found my way to be fit anyway and I hope younger girls will see my journey and know that it is possible. I am following a lot of young girls here and hope to watch everyone make progress and learn through trial and error. I am here to answer Q’s anytime so feel free to ask.
My hope for the future of fitness is that being fit at 40 and up will be normal and it won’t be a freakshow thing anymore lol. There really aren’t many old fit people. I really do hope that happens. In learning from my own journey, I have found out that bodies don’t just fall apart and get broken down and out of shape as you age. Not if you take care of yourself. I don’t think of fitness as a sport or a hobby.. I just think of it as taking care of my body and I think that is really fucking important. Is my life dedicated to fitness? Actually its not. I’ve been consistent with working out for 22 years now that I’m 45, but I’ve spent way more time reading, playing video games and watching TV than I have working out. I’m not sure how much longer I’ll be blogging.. but I will definitely be exercising as long as I’m able for my life.
My blog contains all pictures of me on my fitness journey which has lasted 21 years so far.. This is a real journey and my pictures aren’t photoshopped. I have scars, bruises, cellulite, stretch marks and getting wrinkles, and will not be airbrushing these off, they are part of me. I am not inspired by photoshopped fitness pictures. Once the human flesh is airbrushed it becomes a beautiful work of art, but no longer real. I love following real people with real pictures.. everyone has a beautiful body and it is exciting to take it to the limit and make it the best it can be and see what you can do.
I’m 5’6.. I don’t weigh myself or do measurements, I keep in check by how my clothing fits. Tight jeans are the best way for me.
I was very sick with asthma as a kid and was always in and out of the hospital. I appreciate my health now and I love being healthy and strong and I don’t take it for granted.