WE’VE ALL BEEN THERE. I know for me I was feeling tight & right in high school, but the second I got to college I started to see some weight gain. I’ve heard this same story from so many women, so I thought it doing a post about this would be really beneficial for many of us.
When I ran into Helen in Charleston, she told me that she herself had gained the Freshman 30!! I couldn’t believe it because her body is strong & tight right now.
So for Helen’s 3rd post in her series for TSC she is discussing her own health journey & transformation. If you missed her other 2 posts you have to check them out for some more background on Helen & her Blender Bombs. One post is on intermittent fasting & the other is all about Naomie from Southern Charm lost weight & toned up.
Drum roll please….because here is another amazing post from Helen of Hushup & Hustle.
My health journey has been just that: a journey. I’ve been through the good, the bad, and the ugly in an effort to come out on the other side with a lifestyle that works for me.
I was an extremely active kid growing up. I was always on the move, so those high activity levels coupled with the metabolism young people tend to have (RIP), allowed me to eat whatever, whenever. In short, I consider my first real boyfriend to be CHEEZ-ITS.
Back then, my health and weight were non-issues. I just lived my life, happily running around with my friends and CHEEZ-ITS. This plan was working like a charm until I got to college and gained not only the Freshman 15, but the Freshman 30. THIRTY POUNDS. I would like to take a moment of silence to pay respect to the culprits of this outcome: pizza, Great American Cookie cake, alcohol, Four Lokos, Goldfish, and lack of sleep. Couldn’t have done it without you guys!
THE LONG STORY, SHORT
The rapid weight gain freaked me the eff out. I knew I needed to get control of the situation and get control of it FAST. This is what led me down the extreme dieting and exercising path.
You name a diet, and I’ve tried it. The military diet, the grapefruit diet, Keto, Paleo — I left no diet stone unturned. And while I definitely lost weight with these diets, as soon as I went back to eating “normally,” the weight came back faster than your ex.
Fast forward five years, and I have FINALLY found a lifestyle (I repeat: a lifestyle, not a diet) that has changed my life forever. Since sharing mine and others’ progress on my Instagram account, @hushupandhustle, we’ve encouraged over 100,000 people to follow this amazing lifestyle I’m about to tell you about. I literally wake up every morning to new testimonials about how this 80×20 + BB Smoothie concept has transformed people’s weight and quality of life.
There are 5 core pillars that make up this lifestyle that I’m going to explain to you in detail. So, scroll on down to read and feel free to DM me with any questions at all! (@hushupandhustle)
♡ #1: 80×20 EATING
The 80×20 lifestyle has been HUGE for my health journey and allowing me to still indulge on occasion.
So what is 80×20? This way of eating means that 80% of the time I eat real, whole foods — think fruits, vegetables and grains — while the other 20% of my meals allow me to eat things I normally try to indulge in with moderation such as alcohol, dairy, desserts, etc. You’re enjoying the best of both worlds while still being able to button your jeans (very important).
The natural balance of this lifestyle has allowed me to not stress about grabbing occasional drinks with friends, having dessert after dinner, or enjoying the fuck out of Taco Tuesday. BUT it requires me to hold myself accountable for 80% of my meals so that I can continue to feel my best. A self-starting spirit and strong will power will go a long way while practicing the 80×20 lifestyle.
Here’s a very quick overview of what a day of 80×20 looks like for me: Wake up for the day, drink hot tea or coffee, have my first meal of the day between 11am-12pm (which is always a Blender Bomb Smoothie), enjoy a plant-based snack in the afternoon, and then eat a veggie and carb-rich dinner around 7-8pm (which is also plant-based).
When I started 80×20, I almost instantly felt better, was sleeping better, and the weight started to come off, slowly overtime. This small change and the difference I was already feeling inspired me to do some “me-search” into the world of natural and real ingredients. I became obsessed with learning about the nutrients and proteins found in food besides meat and dairy and got into the kitchen to develop meals that were still delicious but more in line with my new 80×20 game plan.
Suddenly, my tacos went from pulled chicken to BBQ jackfruit, my Lays chips were replaced by baked, thinly sliced sweet potatoes, and it all tasted so good. After time, my body grew to love and crave these healthy alternatives. To this day it’s still so exciting for me to come across a clean and healthy brand that also tastes delicious. It’s these brands who make the 80×20 lifestyle so much easier, really delicious, and actually enjoyable.
♡ #2: PERSONAL DEVELOPMENT
I’ve always known how important personal development is, but not until these last few years did I really make it part of my daily routine (along with self care!)
I have always loved reading but with the popularity of podcasts soaring and how conveniently they fit into my day, I’ve become somewhat of a podcast junkie. They make drives go by quicker, my walks feel faster and, maybe most importantly, my eyes have a break from the blue light screens.
My must-listen podcasts right now are: The Skinny Confidential, Rich Roll, and Oprah’s Super Soul. They each serve a completely different purpose for me, and I love them more because of that. On The Skinny Confidential, I love the unfiltered mouth and opinions of Lauryn, and the wide variety of interviewees she has onto the show. On Rich Roll, I literally eat up the food advice, and who doesn’t need Oprah and her amazing storytelling and advice on her Super Soul Podcast?
But let’s get back to the basics: BOOKS. I don’t care if you like to listen on audible, download 1,000 books onto your kindle, or prefer the OG way of buying a physical book and turning the pages yourself. You just need to find a book, and let it change your life.
Big Magic and The Magic of Thinking Big were those game changing books for me. They truly made me think big and believe in “magic,” and I know that sounds cheesy (vegan cheese duh) but reading them just made something click. I’ve always been creative with so many ideas that I get overwhelmed, but reading this from The Magic of Thinking Big: “…most things have already been done — but they have not yet been done by you” was a cartoon light bulb moment. I owe a lot of my success in business and relationships to these books and podcasts.
♡ #3: SELF CARE
Self care can look, smell, taste, and sound like many things, and the best part about it is that you have complete say in what your methods of self care are.
For me, meditation has become a crucial part of my routine in order to stay centered and peaceful. I’ve been incorporating 2-3 mornings or nights each week of meditation so I can reset my mind and clear my head. Life can be insanely busy and super stressful, so taking a moment to step back and just breathe is a major key. I swear by practicing meditation by using the Insight Timer App— it really has done wonders for me. I am convinced that even a five minute guided meditation helps me keep my cool, remain stress free (for the most part), and has enhanced my sleep.
I also LOVE baths. Is there anything more luxurious than drawing yourself a bath and submerging yourself in comforting, warm water? Baths are the perfect escape to unwind from a long day and to enjoy “me time” without any distractions (besides my cat joining me in the tub because he loves baths, too. Weird, I know). Bath bombs, bubble bath, face masks, a glass of wine, and a candle can and should be included in this equation.
However you define self care, make sure it involves solely making time for you. It’s imperative to take care of ourselves internally just as much as externally. It’s imperative to surround ourselves with encouraging, positive people and to avoid the toxic, negative folks. After all, we are a direct reflection of the five people we spend the most time with. A lot of people would argue that your mental health should come before any other type of health, and your relationship with yourself and with others can make or break one’s mental health. No matter how busy the week is, set aside some quiet time to do what makes you the happiest. Whether that be a bath, a quick massage, a pedicure, a candle-lit meditation session or treatin’ yo self to a shopping spree or vacation, relish in this time by celebrating your victories, big and small.
Life is both too short to not treat yourself and too long not to take care of yourself.
♡ #4: TEN MINUTE LOW INTENSITY EXERCISE
For a long time, I was a High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) junkie. No matter if I wasn’t feeling good that day, had the flu, or was milking a terrible hangover, I was at the gym busting my ass. Flu? No problem — sign up for that Power Hour 55-minute class. Hung over? Sweat it out at the Rapid Run class, duh! I became so addicted, “work-outaholic” was my middle name.
As my schedule became busier and my brain was always “on,” I began to really stress about taking 15 minutes to drive to a class, 50 minutes to workout, 15 minutes to drive home, and 15 minutes to shower. I needed to find a solution for my back to back schedule, so my 10 minute at-home workouts became a big blessing. It just so happened that as I started replacing my hour long high-intensity workouts with 10 minute low intensity workouts, I saw that my body was transforming and, mentally, I felt more relaxed than I had in a while.
Switching from high intensity workouts to lower intensity gave my body the freedom and recovery time it needed, which garnered amazing results. Instead of exercising spiking my stress levels, it was reducing them. The moment I realized this I knew I would need to forever balance my workout regimen. Working out is hard enough, and it should be something you look forward to rather than dread! So if you’re in the same boat as I was, it might be time to switch up your routine. Give low intensity a try to see what you think.
♡ #5: PASSION
There’s a worldwide love/hate relationship with social media. It can be used for so much good and so much bad. Personally, social media is what has grown my business exponentially and made Blender Bombs what they are today. I freakin’ love it.
When I post on Instagram, I get instant feedback (i.e. instant gratification, i.e. like Amazon Prime but on steroids). Through Instagram, I’ve met some of the most influential people in my life, found my medical sources through doctors with similar beliefs as me, found Lauryn who has AMAZING and super helpful entrepreneur tips that I apply to my everyday business model, and found both customers and influencers who love and believe in my product. It’s not weird to say “we met on IG” anymore —it’s the norm!
I began my @hushupandhustle account a few years ago, on which I started posting my opinions of all things health and wellness related. As my Hushup X Hustle Instagram grew, my Blender Bombs company began to grow too (I was originally only making them for my local clients!). The more and more my businesses grew, the less and less I was going out and socializing (AKA not drinking nearly as much). My hangovers were few, my focus was laser-sharp, and work became something I truly cared about it, and I LOVED it! It became my PASSION.
Starting a business at any age isn’t easy, and just like weight loss, happiness, and long-term relationships — it does NOT happen overnight. It requires nurturing, care, forgiveness, and a sh*t ton of passion. For me, passion for what I do is what wakes me up in the morning and puts a pep in my step.
THE END, ALL WRAPPED UP
♡ TEENY TINY STEPS
They say you need to crawl before you learn to walk, and it’s the freaking truth.
My journey started when I was 20 years old and is nowhere close to the finish line. Although I’ve seen success from my hustle, I still crave more. I want to help more people, I want to grow my business more, and I want to grow more as a human being. I wanna learn, develop, and then share it all.
So I will continue to hustle and overcome small hurdles, and you will, too. If your scale says 3lbs down one day, then the next it goes up 1lb, WHO GIVES A F***?! Maybe you just had a little more salt or a little more water the day before. Take baby steps and don’t let one teeny hiccup (like us doing a black Friday sale without letting the co-packer know in advance) stop you from running the show.
Here is a paraphrased quote from Almost Famous that my friend has to remind me of often:
“Never take life seriously. If you never take it seriously, you will always have fun.”
♡ HELEN NOW & WHAT’S TO COME
Currently, I’m still practicing 80×20, replacing one meal a day with a Blender Bomb smoothie and truly LOVING my body, daily routine, and all the incredible people I surround myself with. My ultimate goal is to help literally everyone in the entire world who will let me. Okay, not really everyone but that is the dream.
My next move? Providing my users with a Hushup X Hustle App that will house incredible features like recipes, workouts, menu recommendations from certain restaurants, meditation methods, and even tips for growing your own business!
We are so pumped to be right at your fingertips on the daily so you can fully dive into the lifestyle that forever changed my life.
If you made it this far, thank you so much for reading about my journey. As always, if you need me you know where to find me on Instagram: @hushupandhustle and @blenderbombs. Please feel free to DM me anytime about literally anything — I love nothing more than meeting new people and helping out where I can.
There you have it. I want to thank Helen so much for her amazing posts for The Skinny Confidential community.
+ scope Helen’s post on intermittent fasting here.
++ read all about Naomie’s ( from Southern Charm ) body transformation here.