As we reach the end of our January Weight Loss Challenge, it’s always awesome to see members who are actually feeling a big difference in their bodies. Not just in amount of pounds lost, but also feeling healthier, stronger, and more confident as a direct result of our program. The success of our members is what keeps us re-launching these programs – which Samia Elshafie and Sarah Little are perfect examples of!
Samia Elshafie, a member at Metropole, had surgery on her Achilles tendon about a year ago and had trouble getting back into a regular workout routine since her surgery.
“I was inactive for so long, and kind of soothed my body by adopting bad habits and eating unhealthily,” explains Samia.
When she saw signage for the Weight Loss Challenge starting in January, she decided it was exactly what she needed to get back on track and signed up right away. After chatting about her decision to start the program at her non-profit office, Education for Employment, she managed to get one of her coworkers, Sarah Little, on board with her too!
“During grad school I started to get a little overweight. I’ve been wanting to lose the weight for a while and made my new year’s resolution to get healthy again this year. I decided to sign up for the weight loss challenge with Samia and am so glad I did!” says Sarah.
Since the start of the challenge, Samia and Sarah have worked out twice a week with VIDA trainer Devonne Horsley in addition to cardio workouts on their own several times a week.
“Both of these girls have worked so hard,” says Devonne. They’re both so dedicated and really tackled it head-on. I’m so proud of them!” she says.
The girls’ workouts with Devonne have consisted of strength training, cardio and even some TRX, and both Samia and Sarah can feel a huge difference in their performance since starting the program.
“My strength on things like squats and lunges has definitely improved,” says Sarah. “After the first session I was so sore I couldn’t move the next day. Now, I can feel that I worked out the day before but it doesn’t kill me. It keeps getting better and easier!” she says.
Samia explains that she loves the small group setting of the weight loss challenge because it takes out the intimidation factor that exists when you’re trying out brand new equipment or machines on your own.
“It can be intimidating trying new machines when you’re by yourself. This program felt like a safe space where she (Devonne) would walk us through it and answer any questions we had,” says Samia. “I also really loved TRX – something that I probably wouldn’t have ever tried on my own!” she says.
Something that both girls agree made a huge difference was having each other there for support and motivation through the process. They explained to me how they made an accountability board in their office where they’d keep track of their workouts and commit to not letting the other skip a workout or make an unhealthy food choice.
Samia, who had lost a total of 6 lbs when I spoke with her, and Sarah who had just reached her total of 10 lbs lost when we spoke, both agreed that they couldn’t have done it without the positivity and encouragement from their trainer, Devonne.
“Devonne pushes me harder than I would ever push myself. She doesn’t take no for an answer, even when I really don’t want to do any more burpees,” jokes Sarah.
Samia agrees, and says she definitely couldn’t have done it without Devonne’s encouragement.
“She’s just so fun and spunky and always saying positive things. But no, there’s no getting out of burpees,” she laughs.
As you might have guessed, burpees were not the crowd favorite with Samia and Sarah, but they are both very pleased with their progress and looking forward to continuing their training into our spring weight loss challenge!
“My clothes are fitting better; I’m eating healthier and just feeling stronger in general. I used to always make excuses not to come to the gym but now I love it!” says Sarah.
Congratulations on your awesome progress, ladies, and looking forward to seeing your continued success in the spring weight loss challenge!