#WhatsBeautiful Progress not Perfection

It was a little more than 2 weeks ago ago I introduced you to the idea of Under Armour’s What’s Beautiful campaign round 3.0. And it was a little more than a month ago I shared with you my weekday workouts, specifically my weights routine.

I’ve been sitting here lately thinking about the campaign and watching my friends and fellow FitFluential pals work toward various goals. I keep getting caught up in finishing certain milestones or challenges, I forget the main purpose of this program is to explore who we are as female athletes and to not be defined in a specific set of words or images. At times I’ve rolled my eyes at the messages on my screen “Be beautiful with your own skin” “Be beautiful by smiling”, then I remember that IS the point. The point is to find our own beauty. If beauty for you is mental strength, go for it. If beauty for you is physical strength, go for it. If beauty for you is social strength, go for it. #IWill


If I wrote this post and told you I didn’t care what other people think of me or my goals I’d be a liar. I do care. I sometimes wish I didn’t care, but other times it is that same caring which motivates me to push myself a little harder. So let’s talk about my goals and the progress I’ve made these last few weeks.

Progress toward making new PRs? Well, I haven’t been racing much, but I have been running again. The last race I did was the Memorial Day run and I ran my first mile under 10 minutes. My overall time wasn’t impressive, but it’s a step in the right direction. To make a new PR I need to keep up with 9 minute miles. I also joined in on the Runner’s World run streak. I’m pleased to say I’ve run every day so far! Yippie! There was slight pain and discomfort in my left leg on Sat/Sun, but I backed off and did a VERY easy 1 mile on Sunday. Emme is greatly enjoying this increase in running.


PRs are my main goal, but I also want to look at how far I’ve come and all I will accomplish in the coming year, even if it isn’t a part of the current campaign. The other week I was sent the results from a health study I signed up for at work. I did the assessment in March and haven’t wanted to look at the paperwork. I reported very little cardio exercise and zero weight training. I reported terrible eating habits, restless sleep and much higher than normal stress levels. I was a mess. My paperwork confirmed this and told me my health age was years above my actual age. Never in my life has this been the case.

Looking back on the last three months I am SUPER proud of how far I’ve come. I started weight training 7 weeks ago, I’ve increased my cardio (I no longer get dizzy in Zumba), I’ve stopped with the pop and drink much more water, and I’ve been making strides with my counselor. Sure, there are times I still feel overwhelmed, but it’s part of the process of life. I’m still learning how to balance my plate and I need to learn how to say “No”. Check out these numbers for the weights: *note I was doing 3 sets of 15 reps, I’ve since increased weight and am doing 3 sets of 8-10 reps.

Leg Press: I was at 40-50 pounds, I now easily can do 70-90 pounds.

Prone hamstring curl machine: Remember I couldn’t even do it at the lowest setting of 10? Now I’m doing 30 and should be increasing next week!

Leg extension machine: Was at 40 now I’m at 55, maybe it’s time to increase again?

Lateral pull down machine: Was at 25 pounds, now I’m up to 55.

Hip Adduction / Abduction Machine: Started around 75-85 pounds, now I’m at 100 – 110 pounds.

Seated push up machine: The machine I struggled with THE MOST. I couldn’t even do it at first, just a few reps at 10 pounds. Now I’m at full sets of 20 pounds.

Seated chest press: Previously 10-15 pounds, now I’m up to 30-40 pounds.

Back extension machine: Started at 45 pounds, “hurt” myself at 55 pounds. Now I’m easily doing 70-80 pounds.

Looking at these numbers, how can I not see the progress I’m making? Maybe I can’t see the muscles, maybe I haven’t lost weight, maybe my pants still don’t freaking fit, however, progress is being made. I am creating a strong and healthy foundation for my house. I have to keep believing I’m doing something right and eventually my hard work will pay off.

How are YOU doing with YOUR fitness goals. Have you signed up for the What’s Beautiful site? What’s holding you back?

BTW don’t forget to check out Monday’s post on the Drenched 5K for your chance at a free entry.

5 thoughts on “#WhatsBeautiful Progress not Perfection

  1. Hey Julie – sounds like things are going well! It is definitely all about the journey and we are all “works in progress” in some form or fashion. Weight training is SOOOO good for everyone, especially women. And its great that you are experiencing such fast and measurable progress! So even if running is a bit stagnant, if you are getting stronger in the gym, you’re still improving fitness and health! Keep up the good work and I can appreciate your real-life commentary, you have quite the gift!

  2. I often think about What’s Beautiful in terms of my goals, etc… and realized myself how far I have come. And this weekend was told “You’re the fit one”. “Me?” I thought. But it made me realize now I can do push ups, and funny yoga poses, i can run farther distances, and hike a zillion miles now. And it made me smile how far my progress has come. So what’s beautiful in the journey, I think, is recognizing the effort, progress, and the healthy feeling that glows from inside. Keep up the great work!

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