Y'all are gonna love me for introducing you to Erica! We read each others blogs way back when our babies were tiny. She is a fountain of inspiration and KNOWLEDGE and I am so excited she decided to start blogging again. Be sure to follow her on IG as well @efitmama
Hi! I’m Erica also known as efitmama on Instagram! I just started my Blog back up- Mom with Muscle and feel honored that Megan asked me to do a Guest Post. Megan is such an inspirational, optimistic, ball of energy and so motivated and dedicated to living a healthy lifestyle! My kind of girl ☺
A little bit about me…
I have been married to my husband David for 6.5 years and together we have two children, Hayden who is almost 7, and Adalyn who is almost 4 (September Birthdays).
I entered into my Fitness journey when my son was 9 months old. I remember being out with my company at the time for Administrative Assistant’s Day and my boss treated all of us ladies to $300 and we had to spend it all in a matter of 2-3 hours. We had a limo drop us off at the mall and I began running into stores, trying on clothes and feeling gross – granted this was AFTER we all ate a huge Italian style lunch (think lots of pasta and bread). This was the first time in my life pretty much that I didn’t feel comfortable in my own skin. I had baby weight that I hadn’t lost after gaining a whopping 60 pounds and I ate like crap and didn’t exercise so the last of the baby weight just kind of hung out for that first year.
After this little outing I immediately decided to get a gym membership. My very first one. I knew NOTHING. I didn’t know what exercises to do or how to do them. I didn’t know what to eat or even what was considered healthy – at this time eating a lean hot pocket was what I considered a healthy lunch or dinner (Yikes!). So I started out doing what every woman does – Cardio- and a lot of it. On top of that I was restricting my calories to an unhealthy amount and this is the only way I thought I could lose the weight. I didn’t know better, I wasn’t educated, and I wasn’t able to maintain that lifestyle for very long before I began bingeing every chance I got.
I became pregnant with my daughter and felt such a relief because I could EAT! How sad is that? My pregnancy was actually a really healthy one; I was eating enough (more than enough most of the time!) and I managed to walk on the treadmill for 45 minutes a day, 6 days a week up until 2 days before I gave birth. ::Side note:: I get asked a lot what I would have done differently during that pregnancy and I would have cut the cardio back by at least half and lifted weights instead:: After giving birth to my daughter I was able to start my cardio back up (light walking) around the 4 week mark and I’m sure it had everything to do with my body already being used to it. I continued to be a cardio bunny, not lifting any weights for months and living on a low calorie diet again where I would binge on ice cream 3 to 4 times a week. Pints of ice cream.
I don’t know what clicked exactly, except I came across some articles and research on the benefits of weight lifting. I read that you can burn more calories lifting weights due to putting on lean muscle mass which burns fat opposed to cardio, where you are primarily just burning calories while you are doing it. So I talked my best friend into trying a Body Works class at our gym with me. We were both extremely hesitant of doing this class in place of cardio but gave it a go. We liked it! We were sore and drenched in sweat and felt strong! It was the most satisfying feeling. From that point forward we began incorporating more weight lifting into our routine and now, here I am a year and a half later and I only do cardio twice a week. I would much rather lift weights. I enjoy seeing my body change and morph into a strong and fit one. I feel pride in myself when I lift weights and the adrenaline can be pretty insane!
On top of lifting more weights I also picked up clean eating. I’m sure you are all familiar with the term, especially since you are Skinny Meg’s followers ☺ Within 3 weeks of clean eating I dropped 2% body fat and due to shedding the fat on my stomach, gained a 6 pack! I was hooked! I am now still eating mostly clean, but also going by the “If It Fits Your Macros” approach (IIFYM). You can read all about it here www.iifym.com . It’s a simple concept and it allows you to indulge in your favorite things but in moderation because Mama has a HUGE sweet tooth! I will be talking more about this and much more in upcoming posts on my blog.
Now I am currently studying to get my NASM CPT and making workout plans for people as well. I also have my undergrad degree in Psychology and absolutely LOVE research. I am constantly reading new articles and staying updated on new concepts and science in the fitness industry.
My passion in life, aside from my family, is health and fitness. I want to help others achieve their fitness goals and not have to go through all the hardships that many people go through due to not being educated in this area.
The bottom line is you don’t have to suffer through eating only 1,000 calories a day and doing cardio for hours upon hours each week to have the body you desire. As women we have body issues and complexes and we over analyze every single detail on us (or is that just me?) – I want you to know that there is a maintainable and achievable lifestyle out there for you to get healthy and fit and be successful with keeping the weight off!
Thank you for allowing me to share my story with you all! If you would like to check my blog out I will be sharing my continual journey of fitness, workouts, fit tips, nutrition, meal prepping/planning, healthy recipes, and so much more! I also have a Family Page I will be updating that will offer a little more insight into my personal life!
Be sure to stop by Mom with Muscle and thank you Erica for sharing your story with us!