Interview with Autumn 2015 Challenge winner!
Autumn participated in a 2015 Fighter Diet Challenge. I wanted to pick her brain!
What made you decide to enter the fighter diet challenge?
My friend Dan Emmens signed up for the Men's Challenge in August of 2013 and he won.
I remember overhearing him talk about the challenge and I immediately asked him what he was doing.
He showed me your picture and the Fighter Diet website and I couldn't believe how incredible you looked. That was the body I had been trying to get.
I had completed 3 full marathons along with several half marathons in just 3 years. I was putting miles and miles on my body and with one look at Pauline I knew I was doing something wrong.
How could I have been training so hard and constantly burning hundreds of calories and not have abs like yours?!? (Pauline, editors note)
That same night after Dan showed me your website, I went home and purchased two of your ebooks, The Food Pyramid and the Women's Guide. I studied up and gave up.
Honestly, I was way to weak-minded and couldn't imagine how eating more food would cut fat off my body. I couldn't wrap my head around another concept other than carb-loading and running 15 miles.
I stayed stubborn, see-sawed between carb loading and yoyo dieting all while taking on one more marathon. Then, BOOM, 1 year later, I was now at my heaviest weight (pushing 170 lbs) and your challenge came up in my news feed on Facebook.
I thought to myself, "Okay, get your shit together and just sign up. What you've been doing clearly isn't working" and with that, I signed up and was determined to study harder about Fighter Diet.
What was the hardest part of doing it the Fighter Diet way?
The most difficult part for me was to avoid and/or mentally prepare myself for the constant eating/drinking temptations. I have a very big and extremely close family.
We are together all the time, literally at least once a week. When we get together we drink, we eat and then drink more and eat more.
We love our food and we love our wine. This clearly is not the Fighter Diet way.
I had to change my mindset. Just because it's called "Fighter Diet" does not make it a diet at all; diets are temporary and this is a lifestyle.
I knew that if I wanted to put my all into this lifestyle change, I couldn't indulge in the weekly habits that I had been doing in the past.
During the first few weeks, it was a struggle to skip hanging out so much with but once my mind grew stronger and my goals were perfectly clear, the struggle faded away and now I either pack my own food or my totally awesome mom would go out of her way to separately cook me a Fighter Diet meal.
How did you manage the first two weeks of new habits?
I studied before the challenge started so I was prepared. I read your ebooks, especially Fat Loss by Mind Power, over and over again.
I built my mind so I could argue against any doubts in myself and focus on building my body. My mind power 100% did not happen over night, but that's why I kept rereading.
As silly as this might sound, I thought, I didn't learn to walk over night -- I had to practice, I won't gain mental strength overnight either, so I need to practice.
I remember reading one of your blogs and you had said, "Ask yourself if you can add more weight, if you can, then do it." I did that everyday for the first two weeks, and I still do it now. I ask myself questions all the time, "Can I be stronger than this craving? YES!" "Do you want abs or do you want pizza? ABS!" "Can I add more weight to this set? HELL YES!"
Fat Loss by Mind Power helped me so much. During the first two weeks, I realized how much of a 'snacker' I was.
Constantly snacking on chips, chocolate protein bars, trail mix and easy on-the-go food. The sniff test was awesome for fighting cravings! I'd take in a deep sniff and move on.
After the first two weeks, I did a side-by-side image of my day 1 photo and day 14 photo. The difference was incredible!
I instantly trusted the program and knew that if I kept on going 100%, I will get the results I've been dreaming of. If you can set your mind to something, your body will follow, that's mind over matter to the fullest.
How did the refeeds work for you?
I recently did my first refeed because I needed to wait until my weight was in normal/healthy range and my body fat wasn't so high.
The thought of a refeed when I started seemed a little scary but when the time came for it, I really enjoyed the results. I followed Step 1 in The Concept. I didn't gain any weight and I did feel tighter.
I'm looking forward to my next refeed, this time I'm going to add 50% more of my calories and see how well my body reacts to it. Now that I am at a healthy weight and want to lean out more, I'm planning to follow FDX2 and refeed every 14 days.
Can you tell me how you set up your workout schedule?
I started completely inexperienced in weight training and nutrition so I stuck to the Women’s Guide, 5-day split and 1 day of Butt Bible level 3 for the first 4 weeks.
There were several exercises that I didn't have the strength yet to do but with the helpful videos you post, for instance, the video on how to train pull ups, I was able to build the work out to be a success and not overwhelming or discouraging.
My work schedule varies so my work out routine would switch up as well. Here is a look at my week and how I would fit in my workouts:
Wake up: 3:30am
Workout: anytime between 8:30am-11:30am or after 3:30pm
Wake up: 5am
Work: 8am-3:30pm and 4:30-7pm
Workout: anytime between 5:30am-7:30am or after 7pm
Day off! I could work out at anytime but I regularly worked out in the morning before noon.
Workout: anytime from 5am-7am or after 12:30pm
During the 12 Week Transformation Challenge, our progress pictures were due every Wednesday. I treated Wednesday's as a rest day and day1 of my split would start on Thursdays. I scheduled my work out like this because then I knew I would remain accountable over the weekends.
How did you stay focused?
After the first two weeks, when I saw the changes in my body, I completely absorbed the Fighter Diet as a lifestyle. I was so thrilled. Even though I had a long way to go, I looked forward to taking my progress pictures.
It was a goal of mine to push hard and see changes week to week. I read your blogs and watched your videos to keep learning more about it.
I felt empowered by the lifestyle and in control of my body. Even the weeks that I didn't have a big change on the scale, I was still thrilled because I would see a new muscle pop, a little less cellulite or the waist line of my jeans was all of a sudden not strangling my torso.
The way my body was transforming kept me focused. I didn't want to do anything outside of the Fighter Diet way because then I would just take a step towards my old chubby self or back into my fat pants.
What would you recommend others who are considering doing a challenge?
I would recommend 3 things to others who are considering the challenge:
1) Study the Ebook! The more you prepare yourself, the more successful you will be. Read the ebook and then read it again.
2) Dedicate Yourself! If you slack in your effort to commit to the Fighter Diet then you can only expect that your body will slack in changing
3) Trust it! Trust that if you put in the time and effort, the programs will work. Patience is essential, no one gets fit over night and no one gets fat overnight, it all takes time and this is something that you can totally do!
By: Pauline Nordin & Autumn Jones
Editor: Chelsea Israels, email@example.com