The fitness success story of Teresa Herndon, a FitnessRx reader, is a little unique, but it started off just like any other weight-loss story.
Teresa, who’s now 44 and the mother of two teenagers, grew up playing sports in a neighborhood full of boys. And since she played every organized sports available in high school and intramurals in college, Teresa considered herself to be fit and in shape at a young age.
Eventually Teresa, who is the vice president of administrations for her family’s company, Arrowhead Camper Sales, in Mayfield, KY got married and continued to stay active. But after her second child was born in 1997, she began to have issues with her gall bladder, stomach and knees. She was prescribed medication for her symptoms and then a few years later, in the fall of 2002, Teresa, 5 foot 4, went to the doctor and found out she weighed 153 pounds. “l literally thought I was going to lose it,” Teresa said. “When the doctor came in, I told him by the next visit I will have my weight off and I will be off my medicines.”
It took Teresa 10.5 months, but through hard work she got her weight down to 118 pounds. “Issues with my gallbladder, stomach, and knees stopped,” Teresa said. “It has been over 10 years now, and I have kept the weight off.”
In the fall of 2012, Teresa’s husband began adding weights to his workouts after picking up an issue of our brother publication, FitnessRx for Men, which inspired Teresa to buy her first issue of FitnessRx for Women in January 2013. She began incorporating the recommendations from FitnessRx into her daily workouts and says she now visits the website daily and is at the Y six days a week, mixing up cardio workouts with weights.
The unique aspect of Teresa’s fitness story is that she has actually gained two pounds in muscle since implementing weights into her workouts, and says she’s now in the best shape of her life. Plus, her entire family is a success story— both mentally and physically— said Teresa. “We are so much healthier because of your articles on eating and supplements as well— even life changing for our kids— which is extremely important. They are reaching now for healthier food and not fast food… I cook daily because of the lifestyle change we have made by reading your materials. It has been worth it.”
Q+A with Teresa
Teresa answers some questions about staying in shape, favorite workouts, and where she finds motivation!
What’s your advice for women who want to get in shape like you?
For those women who want to get into shape, there is nothing that should stop you. I would encourage you to get involved at your local Y or gym. If possible, find someone to work out with— that makes it so much easier. Set realistic goals and realize it will take time to reach them all. I set short-term goals and long-term goals. Just don’t get discouraged; you will not see results overnight.
What are some of your favorite workouts that are part of your regimen?
My favorite workouts are anything to do with legs or glutes. I rotate several of the workouts in the magazine and have noticed an amazing result in my legs and glutes. I also love Fit Fast from the website. I do this in place of cardio on the treadmill. I had done so much treadmill workout prior to January 2013 that I was beginning to look too skinny and frail. The Fit Fast helped me all to tone all over. I also follow Jamie Baird’s Your Best. She is so inspirational. All of this had helped me to make a dream a reality— I just finished my first-ever 5K race!
What is your diet like?
My diet and my families’ diet has changed drastically in the last eight months. When I was younger, I thought I was fit. In reality, I was so unhealthy due to my eating habits. Looking back, my eating habits were the cause of all my health issues with my gallbladder, stomach and knees. When I was younger we fried everything or thought everything needed extra sugar. That carried over into my cooking and finally caught up with me around age 30. After I lost my weight, I still— unknowing to me— was eating unhealthy— just in smaller proportions. This past January after I bought my first issue of FitnessRx for Women, I soon realized we had to not just change proportions sizes, but we also had to change what we were eating… so we did. We eat more lean protein and fish and less chips and hamburgers. We do treat ourselves, but it is a TREAT now instead of normal.
Why do you enjoy FitnessRx?
By reading the magazine, I have learned to perfect my body and help my family perfect their bodies by putting proper meals on the table and setting an example to them to exercise daily. I am not worried about comparing myself to anyone else— just myself. I have also learned that even the competitors want to cheat on their diet and it is OK every now and then to do so… just treat yourself in moderation and then get right back on track. However, I must be on track more than off or I will be right back at 153 pounds.
What I love about the magazine and website is the positive attitude that I can feel as I read each article. We live in such a negative world and people tend to try to make themselves look better by putting someone else down— this is never the case in the magazine or on the website. Even though some of these ladies’ compete against each other, they are always complimenting each other— a great big thanks for this example.
Any advice for busy women who have a hard time fitting fitness into their schedule?
Today’s women are busier now than ever. You probably, just like me, wear many hats. In my household, I am a mom, wife, business owner, chef, taxi driver, financial planner, Bible school teacher, nurse, referee, laundry keeper, vet, house keeper, school teacher, etc. But I also owe it to myself and my family to take care of myself. Because of our busy lifestyle, our stress level is sky high. However, you can’t afford not to make time to get fit. Every time I am at the Y, I am releasing stress. That makes me a better mom and wife and just a better person in general.
How do you stay motivated?
I stay motivated in many ways. I keep my “before” picture on my desk at work— hidden of course, but within arm’s reach. There are some days I just ask, why am I trying to stay fit? I look at my husband and children and then my question is answered. I want to be around for them and be able to do things with them in years to come.
Fitness has become a way of life for my family. For at least one hour of the day, we are all together, helping each other and communicating with each other— not by texting but by talking. I wouldn’t take anything for this time together.
How has FitnessRx helped you reach your fitness goals? E-mail your story to Lisa at firstname.lastname@example.org.