If there’s somebody who is passionate about her job and career, it’s Taylor! She works full-time as a state probation agent, is pursuing her Master’s Degree, and still finds time to make it to the gym at least three times a week. Taylor’s upbeat attitude, and positive energy, makes her a pleasure to have in class and as a member of Angel Oak CrossFit! Read and learn how Taylor manages her time and job, with a new found love of fitness and nutrition!
What is your job/occupation?
State probation agent (for now), hopefully soon a new position within law enforcement.
Growing up, what was your relationship with fitness?
Played sports all growing up until junior year of high school. Transferred schools and became ineligible to play, then senior year broke my ankle and was unable to play sports. Never worked out outside of sports, but never had a problem with working out, just didn’t know how to do it on my own.
Before you began writing your own Success Story, were you sedentary or were you active in life/job but had no structured fitness routine? And, what was your relationship to food?
I had no fitness routine and ate whatever I wanted, whenever I wanted— lots of fast food, processed foods, fried foods and sweets. I did have a personal trainer late 2016-early 2017, then went to the police academy, but stopped working out after graduating the academy.
What was the most difficult part of writing your own Success Story? And, how did you overcome that difficulty?
I was very intimidated by the whole CrossFit thing as a whole. I was scared of going, being “the fat girl”, not being able to keep up or do the things others were doing, being judged, and pains from prior/ongoing injuries (this was another key factor in my avoiding the gym for so many years). First, going with my sister made all the difference, hearing her in the background, as well as the coaches and other people at the gym cheering me on my first day actually made me tear up (I did a good job of hiding it), but it actually meant THE WORLD to me. I didn’t feel judged by being the fat girl, I didn’t feel like I was judged for not being able to keep up or doing what others were doing. Not to mention, you always hear about the “cult” that CrossFit is, my very first day at AOCF completely changed my mind about CrossFit in general.
What aspect of the challenge ended up being easier than you thought?
Diet changes was easier than I thought. I’ve never been able to stick to a diet, always thought that healthy eating was just meat, veggies, and fruits. After being provided with the nutrition information in the book and talking to the coaches about what was ok to eat, it was much easier and better than I anticipated. I don’t like calling this a “diet”, but I’m pumped to say this is the first time I actually stuck to a “diet” (HUGE ACCOMPLISHMENT!!!!).
How did your perception of yourself, fitness, nutrition, and others change during the 6 week challenge?
These 6 weeks changed so much for me. NEVER did I ever think I’d be a CrossFitter, but I completely LOVE it and now understand why people that do CrossFit talk about it so much. I’m so thankful for learning the nutrition side of this challenge, and definitely will keep the information with me forever. I plan to keep up with the nutrition lessons I learned (with a little pizza on the side from time to time). My perception of myself changed drastically, in just those 6 short weeks I felt a different level of confidence, mental well being, energy, and proved to myself that I was capable of more than I knew; sticking to the nutrition and diet regimen was definitely challenging at times, plenty of Saturdays I didn’t want to get out of bed for class at 9 am, sat and watched my friends eat pizza, chips and queso, etc., all foods I’ve always loved, and felt a small sense of pride being able to say that I genuinely stayed away.
What’s 1-3 things you learned about yourself, nutrition, health, working out, or anything else?
1. I learned that eating healthy doesn’t have to suck!!!
2. I learned that I have more will power than I ever gave myself credit for.
3. I learned that working out isn’t just running and squatting, and that weightlifting is not only something that I’m capable of, but something that I genuinely enjoy.
Regardless of achieving your goal or not, what were 3 positive changes that you experienced physically, emotionally, or mentally through the 6 weeks?
1. More energy. Used to get so tired and start dragging after lunch, I no longer feel that way.
2. Noticed physical changes, clearer skin, weight loss.
3. Mentally noticed myself feeling less down. I’ve struggled for years with my own demons and depression, and noticed a major difference in my own thoughts and mental wellness.
Where are you now, and what’s in store for the future?
Definitely going to continue with AOCF!!! I love it, I love the atmosphere (very positive and supportive), love the coaches, and love the other gym goers. Going to continue with the eating plan, I’ve eaten fried food since finishing the challenge and feel so disgusting after doing so, makes me not want to eat it ever again.
What is your #1 piece of advice you would give to somebody who is on the fence about beginning a new fitness routine or nutrition regimen?
DON’T. BE. AFRAID. And don’t wait. Theres never a bad time to start, and theres not a bad reason to start. I was notorious for “I’ll start next week” and “I’ll try that one day”, well next week and one day never came. Now, after this challenge, I wish I had started years ago.