Name: Sabrina Katz
Why I Got Started
Physically: I found it exhausting to walk up a flight of stairs. I was tired all the time and needed 4 cups of coffee to get started on my day. I would avoid events that required shorts or swimsuits. I would avoid any physical exercise because it was tiresome, not fun, and I felt inadequate.
Emotionally: I had terribly low self-esteem and hated my body. I felt deep depression, sleeplessness, and anxiety. I hated my job (not because of the job) and my social life (not because of my friends). My attitude about life in general was in the tank.
I was introduced to semi-private personal training and weight lifting at All Strength Training in Chicago. I had always hated sports, gyms, and aerobics classes (I couldn't keep up with the movements in step classes and really disliked sweating in public during a spinning class). Semi-private training sessions did not feel like a class where I couldn't keep up. And the personal training helped me learn the movements and the reasons for doing them.
During weightlifting, I was able to learn simple movements one at a time and put them together for a good workout. Within one month of weightlifting under the guidance of a personal trainer, I felt a vast improvement in my breathing in general and I didn't feel like eating ice cream all day. In the second month I started to see change in my body.
My goal was to lose ½ inch from my hips in that month and I did - that was enough to motivate me to continue. My big goal was to lose 8 pounds and 1 inch from my hips. I sold myself so short - since starting I have lost nearly 20 pounds, 15% body fat, and over 4 inches from my hips.
How I Did It
I have been working out consistently at All Strength Training in Chicago for 2 years. I work out 3-4 times every week and I take body weight and resistance band workouts with me when I travel. I have completely changed the way I eat as a result of gradually removing objectionable foods from my diet and replacing them with muscle building proteins and healthy fruits and vegetables. I sleep better. I only drink one cup of coffee each day.
This summer I participated in 2 bodybuilding competitions (bikini division) and placed 4th in my second one. I have energy to run around with my nephews and I look great in a bikini! I feel great and love my workouts. I never thought I could be this girl. Heading into my 40's in the best shape of my life is such a blessing.
Suggestions for Others
- Get rid of your scale! Weight is so not important if you are looking for a true transformation. I weigh myself once every 2 weeks at the gym. Muscle weighs more than fat and it sure is sexier than a lower body weight.
- Get a trainer or make a commitment to a work out partner. Be accountable for your weekly workouts. I worked out with the same 2 guys 3 times a week for a year. If I didn't show up I had to answer to their badgering and name calling.
- Food. No one can work out enough to balance out a crappy diet. One year into my program I changed my diet from healthy vegetarian to the Paleo diet with a dramatic increase in protein. After that point my transformation was rocketed into another dimension.
- Be patient. There are plenty of quick fix diets and 90 day programs out there, but this kind of transformation takes time. Changing one small thing at a time will help you to stay the new course and not "fall back into old habits".
- NPC Illinois State May 2011
- NABBA 2011 Illinois Cup June 2011 - 4th in Bikini Division
- Illinois Raw Power Challenge Dec 2011 - 2nd in my weight class
Zach Trowbridge, Christine Trowbridge, and Sergio Rivera of All Strength Training Chicago