Our Profile of the Month for March is our incredible and beautiful Christina Bagas.
When Christina joined Terrific Fitness is was to fine tune her physique, improve her fitness, get control of her dizziness, and improve her mobility and coordination. Today she has done all that plus much much more.
The aesthetic transformation really only blossomed over the last three to four months; it is the mental, emotional and structural transformation that has evolved over the past 10 months and speaks mountains.
On a statistical level, Christina has dropped 2.5kg of body fat, gaining 1.4kg of muscle and improving her hydration by 2.1%. She has also dropped a whopping 7 years in her metabolic age!!! That’s huge for someone that is only 33 years old. Metabolically, Christina is now 32! That’s less than her biological age! Her blood pressure has gone from 148/83 to 116/64! So many people focus on the scales but for Christina it has been so much more!
When Christina joined us she was quiet and reserved. She rarely smiled, she rarely looked me in the eye and struggled with confidence in training. Today, Christina talks and laughs with everyone. She is a chirpy bubbly young woman that emits an incredible energy and vibe; you can’t help but feel amazing when you talk with her.
When she first started, Christina struggled with various functional movements due to severe structural imbalances that were never addressed previously. Christina booked a one on one Structural Balance session with me where I taught her a vast array of exercises she could do at home to help her improve those imbalances. She did her homework. She implemented every single little thing I taught her and more. She asked questions in training to help her further. She informed us coaches when something didn’t work for her so we could change things up, instead of her trying to persevere with something that made her feel ill. Christina suffered dizziness during training so had to be very selective about the movements she did. She worked very closely with all of her coaches so we could all learn what worked and what would set off the dizziness, so we knew what to change up. Personal Training, even in a group.
As a result of this extensive work, Christina is now capable of doing so many things she didn’t even dream of when she first started. When I see her kick butt in training and beam her massive ecstatic smile it warms my heart! To say I am proud of her is a ridiculous understatement. I am truly inspired by this incredible woman as are many of our members.
She is an amazing person, fantastic role model for her boys and now a brilliant teacher, helping empower so many young lives with her new found enthusiasm and passion for life. Christina, you friggen rock!!! I love your guts!!!
Quick message also from Coach Theo: “I am so proud of your achievements so far, your dedication in every class has brought you to where you are and your discipline is what will take you to where you want to be. You go girl! Rock that bikini!!!”
Here is Christina’s story in her words:
“I love all sport! I watch it whenever I can. But growing up I never had the chance to love playing sport. Throughout school I was always picked last and then had to endure the two team captains fight over who was going to have me on their team. I felt worthless and deflated and eventually by my mid-teens I believed that I was uncoordinated and weak. This continued into adult life, where I was never asked to be on sport teams with siblings or asked to do anything that required strength. Luckily for me during my adolescent and early 20s I had a thin build so the lack of exercise didn’t reflect in my body-shape and I averaged 50-52 kg, by the time I became pregnant with my first son at 27, I was averaging 60 kg.
I was introduced to fitness when I did Preggie-Bellies during both my pregnancies. I heard a quote that “Labour is a marathon and you wouldn’t run a marathon without training first – so why not for labour?” I trained twice a week for 3 years and felt fit. I can’t remember exactly but my heaviest during my pregnancies was approx. 70 kg. Once my youngest son was 1, it became too far to travel I stopped training altogether. I put all my baby-weight back on getting back up to 70 kg. At this stage I was looking for a gym to get fit again. I tried the YMCA for a year. I never attended class regularly and realised I needed something more personal to deliver options for my dizziness issues. I then tried a local group training business, however this too was not personalised enough for me.
By then I was now one month from starting with TF, at 65 kg. I was going through some major life-changes: I had just quit my 10 year job with the Department of Defence as a Research Chemist. It was my decision because it wasn’t making me happy anymore, however my self-esteem crashed because I was no longer identifying with a career I was successful in and so proud of, and I was scared to embark on a brand-new career as a teacher.
I knew I needed personalised group fitness because I always became motion-sick when I trained. I always thought this was from being unfit, however I worked out, that this was whenever I changed positions. For example after doing push-ups, sit-ups or any bench work. I needed to be in an environment that gave me options at these stations but wouldn’t judge me for it.
My mother-in-law was already a member at TF and we had endless discussions about how it would be a perfect fit for all my issues. Every ‘but’ and ‘what if’ I had, was countered by something she had experienced personally. It took a while to convince me, reflecting back I think I was scared to succeed. She also showed me videos and a post that Coach Lisa wrote about her experience with POTS. This really resonated with me and I made a phone call to Terri the next day.
I started on a gold membership, doing 2 classes a week and then increased to platinum membership. If I missed one class I found it difficult to come to the next class and that spiralled into missing two weeks of training. Now I come to a minimum of three classes a week, but the difference now is I look forward and even crave the next class.
Using information from Terri’s book “Unleashing the Best of You” and nutritional advice from Coach Dani, I have changed the food choices I make. For example sweet potato vs potato, black coffee vs latte, importance of 4 meals a day vs breakfast/lunch/dinner and most importantly for me just because a homemade sweet (e.g. chia pudding) is healthy and has no sugar it doesn’t mean I can eat it every day.
When making these changes I haven’t adhered to a strict meal plan, kept a food diary or meal prep. The reason for this is because I know I can get overwhelmed very easily when starting something new. I made the decision when starting TF to focus on my training and when I get my mindset in the best place possible for achieving those goals I will then introduce changing my eating habits more.
I’m now coming up to my one-year anniversary. My gym life is very different today. Apart from attending more classes I am much more confident to assert the changes I want in certain stations, ask for equipment I need and I am beginning to learn what options are appropriate so I can be self-sufficient.
My work-life has overturned my younger life and I am now happiest as a PE teacher, where I get the opportunity to teach confidence to the little kids who don’t want to even try to throw a ball because they think they can’t.
[How do you feel about yourself today?] It’s pretty simple – today I look in the mirror and smile. I flex and admire my hard work and I never feel ashamed for it. I fit in my clothes and I have worn a bikini for the first time in ten years. I attended the mindset workshop in February and the tools I learnt from that will be with me forever. Some of those closest to me perceive me as physically weak and I believed that perception of myself. Terrific Fitness gave me the confidence to say &*^% them, I am strong!
I’m not going to lie; at the start it was really hard to get to the gym and really easy to make excuses…it’s too hot, too cold, I’ve got my period, I think I feel a headache coming along. However, with continual support from my husband and being accountable to the best gym-buddy Sofie (whether she knows it or not) I pushed myself to attend classes. During my third round, I had a massage session with Coach Theo and discussed the importance of the goal cards. The next day I changed my goal to attendance and once I started coming three times a week I could see the difference in the mirror. I really loved the “me” looking back and I never want her to go away – so I get to all my classes.
It also helps that I have developed some really beautiful gym buddies and I look forward to seeing them.
The other aspects of TF that make it worth every cent is:
• Access to the coaches, who make you feel like you’re their only client
• No-charge kids’ room with no booking requirement that is visible at all times during classes – I love that my boys come to the gym with me and see so many strong women.
• Flexibility to change classes at late notice and the ability to re-book – from my own experience, this flexibility is rare.
• Catering for every injury or personal condition and not being judged for it
Start small. See it has a hurdle race and focus on jumping over one hurdle before you attempt the next. A simple phone call, then an appointment followed by a trial class. A one-hour body-assessment, attending one class a week and then set your goals from there. The results won’t happen straight away so don’t be disheartened because when you can finally see the changes, more and more changes will happen, and not just physically.” – Christina Bagas, Bundoora