Cristina feels like her new body has set her up for success in her career after making an incredible transformation at Ultimate Performance.
She wanted to get ahead in her work life as an underwriter in property insurance, and wanted to look great and feel confident.
But she had always struggled to lose weight and felt she was stuck with the figure she had.
Christina, who is 24, struggled with her diet, would yo-yo up and down in weight, and had become an emotional eater.
It was on New Year’s Eve when she couldn’t fit into any of her clothes that she made the decision to change her life, health and fitness for good.
She has never looked back and quickly surpassed her initial weight loss goals, to lose over 33 lbs of fat, get stronger and drop three dress sizes to become a petite size 6.
Cristina is thrilled with her results.
She said: “It’s unreal. I was leading myself into thinking I would be a size 12 all my life and that I should just embrace it.
“Now I feel strong. I feel that I love my body much more. This strength gives me the ability to choose what I do and what I don’t to my body.
“Once you have achieved that connection with your body and the ultimate understanding of what’s good for you and what’s not, you have the strength to say ‘no’ to bad things.
“You can just change your entire attitude to yourself, to food and to everything else.”
Cristina talks about what really made her transformation so successful, and the lessons she has learned to make her results last a lifetime.
What was your motivation for starting a transformation with U.P.?
There were a few things I was struggling to juggle from the beginning of the year both work-wise and in terms of personal progression. I felt that a successful person shouldn’t look like I did beforehand. So I thought if I wanted to achieve something more, I would have to look better.
What was your lifestyle like before U.P.?
It wasn’t that bad in terms of what I was eating, it was just more about the quantity of food.
I had all of a sudden turned into an emotional eater.
That, combined with a lot of going out, brought me to a situation where I was on New Year’s Eve, not being able to fit into my own clothes. So there were panic and alarm bells going off, and that’s when I brought myself to U.P.
What was it about U.P. that attracted you?
I wanted to see results and I wanted it to be guided accordingly. I didn’t want to spend two years in the gym and see no progress and turn into one of those gym bunnies being on the treadmill for five hours and seeing no results.
I was very much motivated by the results-driven approach
What was your motivation during the process?
I was picturing myself in a certain amount of time in a way that was tied to success and accomplishment. When you start visualising yourself and go into detail thinking ‘what would I look like? What would I feel like?’ That image and the feeling of how I would look at the end of the process is what motivated me.
This was not just about having a different number on the scale, or just proving to myself that I can stick to broccoli and no chocolate for three months. It’s something else. It was about proving to myself that I could get something better out of myself.
Did you achieve the vision of yourself that you had at the start, and how did it change you?
Absolutely. You do have that little feeling inside you of accomplishment.
The drive that you get and the sensation you get when you achieve those results are interlinked with other things in your life.
The fact that you achieved success in something, motivates you to push harder in something else.
All the restraints that were imposed in dieting or training and pushing yourself harder and harder is a way to get to know yourself and to identify your boundaries.
Basically, not just identifying them, but completely redefining them or getting rid of them and thinking ‘yes, I can really do this.’
It might be hard, but you really can do it in the end.
I always really struggled to get these results on my own. Also, when I was achieving any results, they had been short term. But I think jumping from cycle to cycle leads to more disappointment.
So I thought ‘this time I have to do it right’.
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What was it about the process at U.P. that helped you get lasting results?
The process was hard. But it proves the results are maintainable long-term.
With the things I used to do, like starving myself, I was able to get results, but because you don’t treat your body accordingly, you just give up sooner. Then once you give up, you risk falling back to where you started.
The challenges that I was imposing on myself were too drastic and my body wasn’t able to cope and I’d give up within a month or so – that’s what stopped me from getting results in the past.
Do you think you’ve achieved your ‘image of success’?
I’m not going to lie, I was a bit sceptical as to what I could achieve myself purely because of past failures.
I didn’t get where I wanted to be, so I thought this would not be achievable.
At the beginning, I did set myself what I thought was quite a bold weight loss goal.
At the time, the goal seemed to be quite a big one, and potentially not attainable.
But I did prove myself wrong. I lost more than the amount of weight that I’d set as my goal at first. It’s a good feeling to prove yourself wrong!
How did it feel seeing that happen for the first after trying for so long to lose weight?
Firstly, all the preconceptions you had have vanished.
At some points, I tried to tell myself ‘this is how you are, you’re never going to be skinny. Just cope with it.’
I think this was the thing I had led myself into believing before I started doing this transformation.
I managed to get rid of that and thought ‘I can be skinny!’
The more you get into it, the more you learn about yourself and the techniques, and you want to achieve more and more so you become limitless.
How did it feel when you saw the before and after picture?
Change happens so quickly that sometimes you forget where you were. You look at the picture and it looks so alien to you!
But the results are very good. Sometimes I’m ashamed of myself for letting myself get to where I was in the first picture.
When did that happen? How did I do it? How did my attitude towards my body change? How did I let that happen?
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What was the most life-changing things about your transformation?
It’s about reshaping my boundaries, having faith in myself and the ability to show myself that I can achieve more, and that I deserve more.
It’s building the strength to go up against challenges.
I believe that the core ingredient for success in this sort of transformation is the power of the mind.
If you don’t really want it, you will find excuses or blame distractions.
So I believe it’s finding that connection to yourself and defining what’s important to you.
Defining a goal and just fighting for it.
It’s a good exercise to do for yourself and with yourself. It’s beautiful that it can be replicated to every single area of your life.
How has it affected other areas of your life?
I’m more driven. I do see challenges in a different way.
When comparing it to when you’re doing exercises, there is a lot of pain that you are going through, but you can finish the rep or not, it’s a question of how you react to pain.
If you accept it and try to work alongside it, you would be able to finish the rep.
If you say ‘oh it hurts. I’m not going to finish it’ and you stop, you’re not getting where you want to be.
So it’s about getting the right mindset and approaching challenges that way.
What is the magic ingredient to success?
If you want to get somewhere, you really have to want it.
Unfortunately, the desire to get somewhere cannot be imposed by someone else.
You could have the best technique or diet ever, and every resource is at your fingertips, but if you don’t really want it, you won’t achieve it.
It’s been a short journey, but a very impactful journey. It’s been one of self-discovery which I am very grateful for.
It’s not just about ‘oh I’m a size 8 now, and I can be a size 6 soon’, it’s about feelings, the support, and so many other things.
It’s the drive and intent to get the result and working alongside the exercise programme.
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- We show you the best, we don't show you the worst.
- We show you people who follow the plans, not those who are all talk.
- We show you those who inspire even us with their commitment to their results.
- You cannot get results exactly like these. You are unique and that means you can only get your own best possible results.
- Your results are a function of time spent following the plan; your genetic response to the right exercise and diet program; how hard you train; how consistently you come to the gym; how disciplined you are with your diet; & your starting point.
- Oftentimes the lower your starting point (poor fitness, terrible body composition) the better your results.
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