November 16, 2021

Our Fall 2021 Beyond the Challenge Winner, Karla!


Last year, I took a big step and decided to work on self-care for many reasons. One, I was getting married and wanted to look/feel my very best. Also, as a nurse, sometimes I forget to do that for myself. My goal was to better myself physically, losing a few pounds; and also mentally, having more energy, and self-growth. 

The pandemic hit health care employees a little harder, and I knew that in order to give the best version of myself, I needed to improve and work on myself from within. Over the past year, I met my goal weight by following the CSE meals and staying consistent in-between challenges. I learned to track my macros and enjoy meals without tracking them. =) And, that’s ok too! I thank Erika and JJ for those tips - especially for the upcoming holidays. 

During the challenge, I participated in the CSE Workout Wednesdays and fitness challenges, in addition to my daily workouts. I look back at videos when I was using 5 lbs. and I would struggle doing my workout, needing more breaks. Now I’m able to lift heavier and workout longer with shorter breaks. The changes I’ve seen over the past year have been SO amazing, not just physically, but emotionally. I’m happier, more energetic, my relationships are healthier, and I have more confidence in myself. All this has also helped me in my job; I get to bring all this positivity to my patients! I really noticed a physical change at work when I was doing compressions on a patient. Usually I would have needed to take a break and swap with another nurse sooner, but due to my physical growth, I was able to push on for much longer. 

Every day I continue to grow with this community, and I no longer feel like this is a diet that I’m forced to follow, but a meal plan that I actually enjoy - with healthy and delicious meals, plus snacks! The CSE plan has helped me find a new love for cooking and baking; I mean that Double Chocolate Banana Bread is something else! We love it. But it has also brought my family together. My husband and I prep our meals together. The recipes are easy to follow and quick to make; meal prep has been key to staying consistent at work, especially since I work nights. 

CSE helped me find the best version of myself, the mental and physical growth I needed during such a hard year. I learned that we can all do hard things - if we set our minds to it. I’ve enjoyed the last few challenges and can’t wait for the next one! I couldn’t thank Erika and JJ enough for all their hard work and dedication to this program. They are so inspiring!

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Each season we host a free 7-week, community-based health and fitness challenge. We work hard, get our sweat on, and work together to motivate each other to reach our goals.

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