What was your starting point?

I started MDR religiously (3-4 times a week) 1 year ago, about 8 months after my son was born.  I was having a hard time loosing the final 10 lbs of my baby weight. Aside from being above my normal weight, my body was unrecognizable to me.  Pregnancy had changed the shape of my body and I wanted my toned body back.   On top of wanting to change my body I also had severe lower back pain, which made it difficult to do any exercise.  I was feeling stressed out and unhappy with the way I looked.  

Do you remember a specific moment that nudged you to go to class, or decide that it was finally time to make a change?  

I suppose I was superficially motivated by summer, which was fast approaching, but I also just missed working out. I have been athletic my whole life and prior to my son, I worked out 6 days a week doing a variety of spinning, running, circuit training and strength training.  I really missed working out and feeling strong.  Working out has always been a sanctuary for me, and I felt lost and anxious without it.  I knew something had to change. 

What were the first changes you noticed after the first few weeks of taking classes at The Studio (MDR)?  

The first thing I noticed within two weeks of going was that my lower back pain completely gone.  The teachers were very helpful giving me suggestions to modify positions until my core was stronger.  Once this happened my back no longer hurt and I was able to do poses without modifications; I was also so much happier.  I could hold my son without pain and it also allowed me to get back into spinning and running.  The next thing I noticed were my stomach muscles, I could see them again!!  I have done every workout imaginable and I had never seen results as quickly as I saw with MDR.   By summer I was proud of my body - my stomach was flat and my butt was high and tight.  

Have you cleaned up your diet and if so, how has it changed?  

I was much more religious about my diet when I first started because I wanted to loose those last few pounds. I tried to stick to mostly protein, veggies, low sugar fruits, and healthy fats but I definitely cheated every once and a while.  Once I lost the weight I wasn't as strict and I have been able to maintain my weight.  

What’s one pose that you used to hate but love now?  

When I first started I hated bear off the back of the machine.  I just didn't get it. I never felt it in my lower abs and I always felt it in my quads.  It was the most challenging move for me.  After a few months it finally clicked for me and I could do it.  I no longer felt it in my legs and was able to connect to my lower abs.  I wouldn't say I love it now but I now like it.  The moves I love are those that make my butt burn, but I have always felt that way. 

How far have you come from your starting point in both physical and mental ways? And what are some of your new goals when you look ahead?  

I think that the most dramatic change has been my quality of life.  I am less stressed and happier.  (MDR) allowed me to reconnect to my inner and outer strength, which empowered me in other areas of my life.  I have over exercised and struggled with body image issues my entire life and for the first time I feel proud and at peace with my body.  I workout less than I use to and am happier with the results than any other exercise.  My body is lean and toned without being bulky which is what tends to happen to me with other workouts.  My goals for the future are to continue building my strength and to remain on this path of happiness.