Two and a half years ago Nicole was in excellent shape, regularly training with Craig. Then her mother passed away, and in the emotional time that followed she stopped working out. After a while she realized that she had come to lack confidence in her body’s abilities and her energy levels were down. And, of course, she’d gained some weight. Everybody kept reminding her how much she’d loved working with a personal trainer, but the motivation to return just wasn’t there then.
And then, just over a year ago she travelled to Cabo, Mexico with her then boyfriend Fernando, and his family, following the loss of his dad. Fernando proposed, and they decided to return for a beach wedding February 5th 2011. Here was a great jump start to get back into training!
Fernando made it that much easier by getting her a Precision Athletics gift certificate for her birthday, which he sent his sister Simone to pick up. Simone had started running as a way of dealing with her own grief, and after talking to Craig at Precision decided she was ready to work with a personal training as well. All the ingredients were in place for the great Twelve Month Beach Wedding Challenge!
|Sisters in training: Simone Villagran (left) and Nicole Cleve are down to the last two weeks of training in preparation for Nicole’s beach wedding to Simone’s brother Fernando|
It took a while to get their schedules synched up but Nicole and her future sister in law started training together (they were later joined by Kim, another member of the wedding party, and Fernando did the bootcamp). “Not only is it more fun to train with somebody else, but it makes it easier” says Nicole. “They hold you accountable”.
“I was a bit self conscious at first that I couldn’t do things I used to be able to do”, she says. “But once I started to see myself getting back to my old self I just couldn’t stop. It’s hard to underestimate the impact not being fit has on your life until you climb out of that rut: but now I’m stronger, I’m sleeping better, I feel emotionally stronger”.
For Simone training was similarly transformational: “I don’t think Craig realizes how much he’s changed my life,” she says. “At first I was scared, I was being asked to do things I didn’t think I could do. Now I can’t believe how strong I’ve become.” Simone also did the 21 Day Challenge in April. She lost about 8 lbs of fat, but more significantly she changed her eating habits for good.
For both Simone and Nicole being fit has become a lifestyle that goes far beyond the hours when they are working out.
As Craig says “People are generally working out at most an hour a day, lots can happen in the remaining 23 hours to magnify or sabotage your results: nutrition and sleep play a huge role,”
“I think it’s great that Nicole and Simone teamed up – what a great bonding experience to cement their new relationship. I’m also really impressed that they’ve made training a priority.
“The important shift for me was when my training time became non-negotiable” states Nicole “I’ve got a lot more clarity about what I need to do take care of my mind, body and soul, and I’m not willing to sacrifice that.”
Nicole takes proactive measures rather than risking slipping behind: “I knew I had to counteract the holidays and pre-wedding celebrations so I started working out four days a week; even after the last six weeks I’m still right on track”.
The wedding has been a very concrete goal to work towards (bare back and arms, beach wedding!), but both Nicole and Simone are very clear that while it was a fun focus, it is not the main reason they’re still training, and plan to continue once they return.
But for now it is crunch time and they are working hard to make sure they’re happy with the results. And while Nicole will be the main focus on the 5th, Simone gets to do things twice – she’s in her best friend’s wedding party, also in Cabo, just two days earlier.
Craig and everybody at Precision congratulate them and hope they have a great time. And, expect to see them back in the gym bearing photos on their return!