Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Finding Myself - Colleen's Story of Weight-loss

I'm headed into the Aussie bush this week. I'll have no phone reception and not internet. The cabin we are staying at boasts about this fact with their website slogan, "... we can't provide WIFI but we promise you a better connection." Let me introduce you to 30 year old Colleen Mckee, who recently inspired me with her story of becoming the most fit mum around town. She hails from Louisiana, and I know her through her sister Melanie, who was my favourite room mate  in our early twenties. Clearly that means I can trust her sister Colleen with my blog this week. Hope you are as inspired as I am. I may just go walk-about  now to burn some calories. - Jess at PKM
Seriously? America should really have some new gun laws!
In May of 2013, we were blessed with the arrival of our third child. This should have been a time in my life where I felt the happiest I have ever been yet I felt a constant cloud hanging over me. I had gained close to 70lbs over the 3 pregnancies and I was just plain uncomfortable in my own skin and found myself hiding from every camera possible. Having been a former collegiate athlete, I felt defeated by myself. I was no longer the happy, healthy girl I once was.

In the start of August that year, I was a size 16 and just 5lbs shy of 200lbs. I knew I needed to do something to find me again. I had to! I had to for my kids, for my husband, and most importantly myself.  So that month I decided to fork over the money and join a gym. I started going to work out 5 nights a week. I used the stationary weight machines and hit up the treadmill and the elipticalDuring that month, I also downloaded the 'myfitnesspal' app and started tracking my food. It wasn’t until I started tracking my food, that I realized just how much I was really eating.  My portion sizes were out of control as well as the poor food choices I had been making. By using the app, I was able to take control of my diet by seeing exactly how many calories and nutrients I was putting into my body.  It wasn’t long before I started to see the number on the scale going down. 

By mid-November I was 30lbs down and feeling great. I finally felt that I had hit the groove and this time I would reach my ultimate goal. I felt great and then the complacency hit along with the holiday season ...

I slowly started missing a day here and there at the gym and then I wouldn’t log my food and before I knew it I was falling back into my old habits. Within a 6 week time I had gained 17lbs back just like that.  Here I was feeling defeated again and for several months I would gain a few more then I would lose it then gain it again and lose it. I just could not get back into the groove.  I continued this cycle until that April. 

A close friend had joined another gym in the area and suggested I check it out. Once I took the tour of this new gym, I was hooked. 
The new gym had all kinds of classes I could take so I quickly started trying them out.  I found that I absolutely love spin class. I also started taking a weight lifting class and through this class I became more confident with using the free weights and realized just how much I enjoy the weight lifting aspect of exercise. I started lifting weights 6 days a week along with spin class and a kickboxing class
An added (and important to my success) bonus was that this gym provided childcare. This was a huge game-changer because that I could go first thing in the mornings. I no longer had to wait until 8pm at night for my husband to get home so I could go work out; which frankly was exhausting because who has the energy or motivation to go work out after chasing 3 small children around all day? Plus, those few hours in the evening were the only hours my husband and I had to spend with each other during the week.

Once I started to lift weights the inches started melting off. I started to see muscles I thought I would never see again. I also started tracking my food again and made major changes to my diet. I started choosing healthier options, eating more protein, and drinking plenty of water.  

By November I was wearing a size 8 and weighing 143. I can tell you I am never going back to that girl in the before photo!  I feel too good to let that happen! I will tell you though, as you navigate through your own weight loss journey, it will sometimes feel like an impossible feat and you will still stumble along the way, I even found my self stumbling this past holiday season, but what you have to do is just pick yourself back up and take it one day at a time.  Make small changes, find something you enjoy to stay active, and make a commitment to your new lifestyle.  You deserve it!

*Peachy Keen Mumma is linking up today with Essentially Jess for IBOT (I blog on Tuesdays).


  1. You look amazing! Great story and so much muscle now! I used to gym 6 nights a week and still brag about the hard butt I once had! 😂 No longer hard! I would love to join gym again...

  2. Ahh what a difference a gym with childcare can make. That's part of the reason I find it hard to get out to exercise. You look amazing. You've certainly worked hard. Good on you!

  3. You look great, well done! I have put on weight after having my baby daughter. Breastfeeding makes me ravenous, but I eat too much to compensate and I haven't been getting out and exercising. I have always been small prior to this. I like your realistic advice there in the last line.

  4. Good on you! You look great! I'm slowly trying to be a bit more proactive with food and exercise, by mixing up the exercise. I can't do the gym right now, so I'm trying to be more creative at home.

  5. Awesome work! You have such a great outlook on fitness and I wish you all the best for the future.

  6. Fantastic. Good for you, I will have to add some weights & fitness food app to my fitness classes xx

  7. Colleen McKee StatonJanuary 21, 2015 at 3:51 AM

    Thank you! And definitely adding weights will help you get results faster. Best of luck to you!

  8. Colleen McKee StatonJanuary 21, 2015 at 3:52 AM

    Thank you do much! :)

  9. Colleen McKee StatonJanuary 21, 2015 at 3:56 AM

    Thank you! Making small changes along the way helps you ease into things helping those habits stick and over time those small changes make a big difference. I also follow Emily Skye on FB. She is a fitness model and posts lots of workouts that you can do at home. Best of luck to you!

  10. Colleen McKee StatonJanuary 21, 2015 at 4:01 AM

    I was the same way when breast feeding my little ones. They say breast feeding is suppose to help you lose weight but I was not one of the lucky ones. ;) Just take it one day at a time! You got this!

  11. Colleen McKee StatonJanuary 21, 2015 at 4:05 AM

    Thank you so much! And yes that was a total game changer for me! There should definitely be more gyms out there that provide this service because a healthy, happy momma means a healthy, happy family! Best of luck to you!

  12. Colleen McKee StatonJanuary 21, 2015 at 4:09 AM

    It can be hard once again....squat, lunge, squat, lunge! Lol! And thank you for your kind words!

  13. Oh my god Colleen this is awesome! Very well said, and of course you look awesome! You look better than that chick I used to get in trouble with in highschool ;)

  14. Colleen McKee StatonJanuary 21, 2015 at 6:20 AM

    Oh those were the days! ;) Thank you so much chick!

  15. Holy shit. Consider myself inspired!!

  16. Colleen McKee StatonJanuary 22, 2015 at 12:41 AM

    Thank you! =)

  17. Wow! Loved reading about your journey. Well done! #teamIBOT

  18. Colleen McKee StatonJanuary 27, 2015 at 12:19 PM

    Thank you!!!