Meet Melinda a.k.a @my.fit.healthy.life! A mother of 2, Melinda leads a busy life but that hasn’t stopped her from embarking on an inspiring fitness journey. Melinda started BBG in 2015 and did so with a desire to gain back her pre-baby body and regain strength.
“I started because I wanted to get my pre baby body back. I felt weak and wanted to rebuild my strength and also wanted to start doing a little something each day just for me. My first workout was awful! I had to modify everything, I was so weak and unfit and had to pause after every 2-3 reps to rest. I was sore for a week after!” said Melinda.
Since then Melinda has completed so many round of BBG she has lost count. She has also incorporated weight lifting, HIIT sessions and yoga into her fitness routine. Seriously check out Melinda’s IG guys, it’s very motivating –her workout videos have led me to the gym many times!
I found myself nodding my head many times while reading Melinda’s responses to my questions about her BBG and general fitness experience. Melinda is full of great advice! When discussing how to get out of a fitness slump Melinda said one thing she sometimes does is enjoy long walks outside. “Workouts don’t always have to be intense and I’ll always feel a lot better after getting outside”, says Melinda. Yes! Preach! Workouts don’t always need to be gut busters, we don’t need to work ourselves to the bone every single time. There are times when I constantly need to remind myself of this and so it is great that I now have Melinda’s advice in my arsenal. It’s always easier when you hear someone else reinforce truths, especially because our egos are tricksy hobbits and can find a way to invalidate our beliefs and make us question ourselves till the end of days. “What do you mean you want to go for a stroll? You need to sweat to make progress. You do need to do X, Y and Z. Now!. Anyone else have an ego like this? Ha.
Another tidbit that caused vigorous vertical oscillations was Melinda’s advice for BBG newbs who might be frustrated over lack of progress.
“I find I dropped quite a bit of weight over my first 12 weeks of BBG, but it took at least 6-9 months for me to really start building muscle. It’s so easy to become frustrated, but I guess my advice would be to try not to focus only on seeing results. Trust the process and learn to enjoy the journey. Focus on other areas of progress, how do you feel? Do you have more energy? Do you feel happier? Can you do more reps than you used to? Can you run farther? All of those things count as progress, and the physical changes will eventually come if you just stay consistent”, said Melinda.
Ahh so true. Now without further ado I will include the rest of my interview with Melinda below. As with other interviews I have highlighted parts I find to be particularly important in bold. Give it a proper read friends, as mentioned there is great wisdom to be had.
1. When did you start the BBG program and how many rounds have you completed? What type of fitness activities did you engage in pre BBG?
I started BBG in 2015, 8 months after having my second child. I completed 4 rounds in a row, and then started mixing it in with some straight weightlifting days. I’ve actually lost count of how many rounds I’ve done now! But it’s been 2 years, and BBG has been a regular part of my exercise that entire time. Before having my children I grew up playing competitive basketball, and then once I stopped I did workouts at the gym, although sticking only to cardio machines or the occasional group fitness class.
2.What does your weekly workout schedule look like? For instance what times of day do you train and what kind of workouts are you doing at the moment ?
I workout 5-6 days a week, usually at 5am before work and before my kids wake up. At the moment I’ve been doing a mixture of BBG stronger, some straight weight lifting sessions, and a couple of HIIT/LISS workouts per week.
3. What is your diet like? Any favourite meals you eat regularly?
I would say my diet is very boring and normal! I eat probably about 80% healthy and 20% treats, everything in moderation. Some regular meals are simple things like a stir fries, roasts, grilled fish and salad, and I can’t help but have a little bit of chocolate each day.
4. Where do you mainly workout: home, gym, outdoors?
For my first year, all of my workouts were done from home. Then when I wanted to start mixing in some heavier weights, I decided to join a gym and now that is where I do the majority of my workouts. We also go for a run around the Botanical Gardens in Melbourne as a family every weekend.
5. What advice do you have for BBG newbies?
Don’t be afraid to modify!! I doubt there are many people who could get through a BBG arm workout in the beginning without modifying! As long as you are working to YOUR best, that is all that matters and slowly your strength will come. Start building your strength slowly. Maybe start doing 3 push-ups on your toes before dropping to your knees, then 5 and so on. Eventually you’ll be doing them all on your toes and you will feel so amazing! And don’t forget to stretch and foam roll! Something I’m guilty of not going enough of…
6. What do you do when you find yourself in an exercise slump or not so motivated to workout?
I usually find that’s the time I’ll decide to mix things up. There are so many great workout videos on Instagram or YouTube, so I’ll usually have a look for something that interests me and looks fun and try something new. Or it might be as simple as going for a long walk in the fresh air instead, workouts don’t always have to be intense and I’ll always feel a lot better after getting outside. Plus there’s always motivation to be found from looking at all of my amazing IG friends killing their workouts!
7. Do you review your progress? If so, how often? What do you use as a measure for “progress” (more reps, extra weight, quicker completion time)?
Yes, I guess every 4 weeks or so I try to increase my weights wherever possible, and I always wear my fitness tracker when I run to compare my split times.
8. Do you ever modify BBG workouts by doing things like swapping out exercises or taking longer breaks between circuits?
I used to, especially in my first BBG round where EVERYTHING was modified. I had to take several breaks, not just in between the circuits but during them too! Slowly I worked my way to doing more reps unmodified and now I don’t need to swap anything out.
9. What are some struggles (if any) you have had with health and fitness in the past or present, how did you overcome them?
I had a knee reconstruction when I was 18, which I injured while playing basketball. It took an intense 9 months of rehab to regain my strength and return to playing. Now it is so strong I wouldn’t even know which knee was injured if it wasn’t for the scars.
I struggled with binge eating for quite a few years in my 20’s, which began after I started crash dieting and quickly snowballed into a terrible habit of restricting calories then bingeing. It took a long time to break the habit and BBG definitely played a part in overcoming it. Learning how to better fuel my body and using weights instead of just slogging it out on cardio machines, helped change my views on how to treat my body.
12. Do you have any fitness inspirations? Celebrities, friends, IGers that you look up to?
I absolutely love Turia Pitt. I read her book recently while I was away on holidays and think she is the most inspirational woman, with her inner strength and positive attitude to life. I’m inspired by other mums like @activelyrees @kelseywells and the girls of @balancing.fit Just regular mums getting it done. All of the friends I’ve made through this IG also inspire me everyday! My dad has also always been a huge inspiration to me, he has achieved so much in his life and has always shown me what can be done with hard work and consistency.
13. And finally, tell us a little more about you. For example, What do you do for work? What is a non-fitness related hobby you have?
I work 3 days a week as a dental hygienist at an Orthodontic practice. When I’m not working I love to cook, travel, renovate houses and spend time with my loved ones.
Any final words of wisdom for us all?
Don’t compare! The minute you start comparing your progress to others, you’ll start feeling discouraged and want to give up. Everyone’s circumstances are different, and everyone’s progress will be different. It doesn’t matter how long it takes you to get there, because you want to make this a lifestyle and something that is sustainable! So take inspiration from others, but don’t allow it to second guess your own progress. And have fun, do workouts you enjoy, if that’s not BBG then find something else!