Before & After  Tammy Nikolov When Tammy faced a series of low points last year, the weight piled on … as did the self-pity. Here’s how The Studio (MDR) helped her transform her body and her attitude. 

How did you find The Studio (MDR)? And what was your first class like?

I live in the neighborhood and would always slow down when I saw a class was taking place, but I was too scared to stop and go in. I finally got the guts to stop one day, and Lisa was sitting behind the desk. She could see by the look on my face that I was terrified, and she seemed to know I had struggled to work up the courage to come in. She was so kind to me; she helped me sign up and made me feel at ease. Lisa took the time to listen to my story and assured me that I had come to the right place. My first class was with Jessi. I decided to take the MegaMamas class, as I thought it would be more my speed. Jessi was so sweet and knew I needed a little extra hand-holding. The Mommas in the class were all pregnant except for me and they ran circles around me. I thought, If they can do this pregnant, I can do this. I put my fear behind me and just started following the movements and watching my form. Before I knew it I was moving along with the class.

What were your goals when you first started taking classes?

I have a 2-year-old little girl and I put on quite a bit of weight during my pregnancy. I never really got back to my regular size. Also, 2011 was a tough year for me. I had a variety of emotionally challenging events happen in my life. I had an accident that required surgery to repair some nerve and tendon damage in my hand, and I lost my father. Those were just a few things on a long list of lows. Pity Party for one please! And so I let the weight pile on.

After turning 40 in 2012, I could see and feel the changes in my body. I knew that the longer I waited to make changes in my life, the harder it would be to get to where I wanted to be and needed to be for my health. I was stuck in a rut and had to get the weight off. More importantly, I wanted to stop feeling sorry for myself. The Studio (MDR) gave me the opportunity to make that happen.  All I needed to do was make the commitment; once I did, it was like a million doors opened up for me.

What have been some of your biggest challenges along your path of transformation?

MDR5The second class I took was the Intro Class on Sunday. It really helped me understand the process and what The Studio (MDR) had to offer. I heard in the class, “If you come three times a week, you will change your body.” I took those words to heart and told myself that I could do this. I signed up for my classes at the beginning of the week and would not let myself back out. I read the transformer stories for inspiration. It was awesome to see those people in class and know how far they had come. The Studio (MDR) is such a wonderful community of people. You can always look to your neighbor for inspiration during class. The only person you are competing with is yourself. I have made some wonderful friends at The Studio (MDR).

I had to take a few weeks off in May; I was out of the country for work. I would practice my plank and tried to be as active as possible while I was gone.  When I came home, to my surprise I was exactly the same weight as when I left.  I thought for sure I would have put on extra pounds. I know the core values of what I had learned at The Studio (MDR) helped me maintain my weight even when I couldn’t make it to classes.

What’s been your biggest victory so far? How'd you do it, and how'd you feel?

So far I have lost 20 pounds and several inches off of my body. In fact, I’ve lost five inches from my waist and two inches from my legs. I stood up one day and my skirt fell to the floor. I have gone from a size 14 to an 8 and I am closing in on a size 6. And still, the biggest change for me has been more internal than external. I have been motivated to change my diet and be more conscious of everything around me. I love my newfound healthy lifestyle! It has helped me become a better mother and wife. Best of all, I stopped feeling sorry for myself and made the changes I needed to make. I am so much a happier now.

What are your goals now?

I would like to lose a little more weight and continue to tone up. The Studio (MDR) will forever be a part of my life!  I cannot imagine my days without it. It has given me so much more than my new shape. It has helped me get back to the confident girl I used to be.

I am ready to conquer the world!