As part of our ongoing feature, Member Spotlight, Coach Kellie Davis chatted with Get Glutes Lifetime Member, Kelly Ramirez, to learn more about her inspiring story from absolute beginner to thriving fitness brand.
Hi, Kelly! Thanks for taking the time to chat with us. Get Glutes has enjoyed following your journey over the past few years. Tell us a bit about your background and why you came to Get Glutes.
For years I have struggled with my weight. It's the same story as it is for many, life happens. When your daily life is happening so fast who thinks about staying healthy. I often thought what does healthy even mean? To me it was just not getting sick as much.
I never even noticed how out of control my weight was getting until it was completely out of control. It was total denial on my part.
I've tried more diets that promised rapid results than I can even remember. It was always the same story. Rapid results that made feel on top of the world to not being able to maintain it and gaining all the weight back and more.
I discovered Get Glutes through reading article after article about how to improve your body, especially the glutes. I decided it was worth giving it a try because clearly I couldn't do it on my own.
You and I have a bit of the same background as far as hitting our tipping point. You were in a lonely place when you ventured into the gym for the first time. Tell us a bit about that turning point and what evoked change in you.
There were several factors that led me to a point where I was done with being overweight. My dad passed away about 5 and 1/2 years ago. Then a year later my Uncle passed away. That was it for my dads side of the family. Everyone has passed away before the age of 65. This is going back generations. That in itself was terrifying.
The other factor was I was tired of feeling embarrassed. I was embarrassed because I would hear the comments other women would make about their bodies. I would look at them and think you're complaining about being a size 6. I would then look at myself being almost 200 lbs. They would see the look on my face and say "Oh don't worry honey your fine." It hurt terribly because I never thought I could be a size 6. I just wanted to lose some weight and keep it off. I was embarrassed because I wanted to walk in summer without having to put on a pair of pants because my legs were hurting from rubbing together.
I just didn't like anything about myself. I couldn't see past the fact that I felt people were saying oh she is overweight, but has this great personality. I hated being put in a category. I wanted to do activities just like everyone else and not feel out of breath. Going up a set of stairs was even taxing for me.
At this point with all these factors I decided I had, had enough.
You didn’t start off in the weight room. At what point did you decide to explore strength training and what were some of the initial struggles you had to overcome?
I never had a set plan of how I wanted to lose weight. All I've ever done was classes that were cardio based. After a couple months I was losing some weight, but not much was really happening. After coming across girl after girl that Bret Contreras was posting about have a great set of glutes, I stumbled upon a picture of Marianne Kane. My thought immediately was like, I want to look like that.
Here I had been 196.8 lbs. Never did it cross my mind whether I could or couldn't. My mind was made up. It was time to ditch the classes and hit the weights.
I literally didn't know a thing about weight lifting. Nor did I have a clue on how to get the look I wanted either. Because of this I hired a personal trainer.
I thought this is what I need. Someone who can show me around the gym. Teach me exactly what I need to know, and BOOM magical will happen and I will get what I want.
That was my mistake.
When I had my consultation with my trainer I brought my printed off picture of Marianne and said "This is what I want!" He looked at me, then at the picture, then back at me and said "Good luck with that, because that's genetics." For a moment I felt disappointed, but wanted it so badly I hired him anyway.
This was my second mistake.
During the selling process I was told that nutrition would be discussed with me. This never happened. Every time I asked I was told over and over this isn't part of the plan. If you want nutrition that will cost extra. I realized quickly I was told it was included as a way to get me to buy the bigger package.
Before long I realized I didn't know my way around the gym at all. I was so sick from workouts that most days it was a struggle to even drive home. I had no clue what a set or reps were. If I was able to catch my breath between one exercise after another it was because I asked.
I remember one time saying "I think I'm going to be sick." He told me to stop for a moment checked my heart rate. Then proceeded to blame me for not telling him earlier that my heart was beating so hard.
After been so disappointed and coming across Get Glutes I decided it was time to take my journey in another direction. I signed up for Get Glutes.
I still remember my very first workout included the Box Squat. I went over to the rack, had my bench all set, then quickly realized that it was to high and I needed to make an adjustment. I couldn't for the life of me figure out how to get these pegs out of the rack to lower them. I was pulling and pulling, but nothing was happening. I looked around and was praying no one was watching this debacle. Finally I realized I needed help. I stopped this big muscle guy passing by. He agreed to help and told me the pegs stick sometimes. He undid one then the other. I adjusted them to my height and was about to get started, that's when I heard the laughter. I turned around and he said "Did you know you put them in uneven?" I could have died. I was so embarrassed. He had to help me again.
The crazy thing is, I kept going. There was a time I would have left because I was so embarrassed. I believed in Get Glutes. Even though I wasn't participating in the forums where everyone offered great support, I was still reading what everyone had to say. It gave me hope!
How did lifting weights change everything for you?
Once I gave up the classes and started lifting more and more my mindset changed. I felt like a beast walking from the locker room to the gym. I became more and more confident.
I found my stomach would be doing back flips with excitement waiting to get my workouts each month. I wanted to see where I was going to be taking my body next.
I was literally in awe at the power my body had. No longer was I looking around the gym terrified. I was in the zone. It was just me and my weights. Nothing else mattered.
Out of the gym I was finding I was becoming more confident. My body was transforming. People kept asking me all the time "What are you doing that you've lost so much weight?" Happily I would reply "I lift weights!"
It was such a joy to grab clothes that I always wanted to wear and not have to worry that they wouldn't have my size. My legs weren't rubbing together for the summer anymore. Putting on a pair of shorts felt amazing.
Nothing was a chore anymore. The feeling is almost indescribable. You feel on top of the world. It changed me emotionally, mentally, and physically.
You lost 70 pounds in less than a year. What helped you stay focused during that time?
In all my previous attempts at weight loss I went in with a number I wanted to see on that scale. What number was it going to take for me to be happy. It had always been 135lbs.
This was a number I had chased forever. It’s hard to believe that one number would impact my life in such a negative way.
This time though, there was no number.
It was just about me and what healthy looked like. It wasn't always easy. There were days I asked myself what am doing? Is this even working? It didn't stop me though. I just kept going anyway.
If I could give any advice to anyone, it would be to just keep going. It gets easier and easier. Just show up everyday you wake up. Each new day for me was a day to tackle my nutrition, possibly make some changes. Some days it was to get out of my comfort zone and try a different food. Other days it was to challenge myself at the gym and see what I could do next.
By taking the process one day at a time it allowed me not to focus on the end result. Simply on What Can I Do Today. That was the difference for me.
Your weight loss success wasn’t just about fitness. You also learned how to manage nutrition. Can you tell us what helped you stick to a solid nutrition plan that worked?
I lost all my weight, but still wasn't satisfied with how my body was looking. I hired someone to help me zone in on my nutrition. This really taught me how to eat. It's not about a diet. It's a lifestyle change. It's learning control in some areas while allowing yourself to let go in other areas.
It's crazy to think it's all or nothing mentality. No one can maintain that. We all have certain foods we really enjoy and if you can't enjoy them in moderation from time to time you will never sustain your weight loss. It took me awhile to train my brain that it's ok to enjoy food in balance.
Now I can enjoy that piece of chocolate now and then. It's guilt free going out to eat or going to a social events. I know I'm not headed for disaster.
Good nutrition is all about learning how to eat, not on what you can't eat.
You turned your own transformation into a fitness business. What made you decided to start your own fitness brand and how are things going?
Yes, my transformation impacted my life in such a huge way that I wanted to share it with others. Being through the process myself made me feel that I wanted to help others get what they want.
From all the crazy diets, and bad trainers, really taught me what I wanted to do and not do.
It made me realize that people need hope! They need to know there is another way. It doesn't have to be this awful experience. It can be achieved and maintained through a positive experience.
Starting your own fitness brand isn't for everyone. I think most people think it's easy. It's ok, I thought it would be also. It isn't this simple plan of get certified and people will be knocking down your door.
However, for me I can't say enough about how rewarding it's been. I've been extremely fortunate that all my business thus far has come through word of mouth.
I've been blessed that things have really taken off and are going far better than I imagined at this point. Something I couldn't be more thankful for. I really can't thank my clientele enough. I just show them the way, but really the hard work comes from them.
Legendary Fitness has many big projects we're working on for this year and can't wait to see where our Journey continues to take us.
It all comes down to, I believe, in making a positive difference in someone’s life!
Where can our readers find you online?
Thank you, Kelly, for sharing your inspiring story with us!