how to lift weights

Finding Power and Confidence through Lifting



With 10 full marathons and countless half marathons completed, fitness isn’t a new concept to Jill. “I’ve been a runner my whole life. That’s where it all started for me.”


But after having twins in 2012, running wasn’t yielding the physical results Jill was searching for. “I was running, but not losing weight. I was still exhausted, and my body wasn’t changing.” Pushing a triple jogging stroller with her 18-month-old daughter and twin babies, Jill would head out for a run along the country roads surrounding their home.  “With running, I love the freedom. It clears my mind and is a great stress relief.

Living 30 miles from the closest gym added an extra challenge to the equation. In addition to the distance, “I wasn’t comfortable in the gym. I didn’t know what to do. So, I would try doing exercises at home.”

In the Fall of 2016, Jill joined a Fit Mom Challenge to build some confidence with lifting weights. “During this challenge, I made it a point to get to the gym. I began to feel more confident going and lifting weights. I liked the way my body was changing. I had more energy. But I still didn’t feel confident creating a lifting routine on my own. “Immediately following the Fit Mom Challenge, Jill began working with Sisters in Shape coach Christie Nix to keep building on the new-found confidence she was gaining.

“Once I started lifting weights, I became addicted to it. Lifting makes me feel powerful. It makes me feel like I can do anything. I’m very introverted. Before I was very shy; but less so now. Not only have I become stronger, but I feel more confident in everything I do.”

Initially, Jill’s goal was to build the muscle of a bikini competitor, with no interest in actually competing.  In Summer 2017, Jill’s mindset and goals began to expand further after attending Camp GORGO. “I thought of people who competed as these super individuals… but just with talking to all the women I met at Camp and hearing the stories of those who had competed… I realized they were just everyday normal people. And they did it. Which made me think, “I could do this too!”

Jill left Camp GORGO inspired to achieve two things in her fitness life: become a certified personal trainer and compete in a natural bikini competition.

With the demands of competition prep, Jill has found online training to be very helpful in balancing the her busy lifestyle. “I do a lot of workouts at 4am. While everyone is asleep is the only time I may have a sitter. There aren’t many trainers willing to meet me at the gym that time of day. My husband travels a lot for work, so I’m solo mom most of the year.”

jill family photo.jpg

In addition to the convenience of online trainer, Jill loves the personal connection and understanding that comes with the SIS trainers. “I’ve had other personal trainers in the past and they were all male. But what I loved about Sister in Shape is that they are sensitive to women’s needs and priorities that other trainers may not understand. In addition to 6-year-old twins, we have an almost 8 year old daughter who is autistic and non-verbal. From homeschooling, to therapy appointments, and even mealtime… my world revolves around her schedule.” Jill also has an 18-year-old stepdaughter who’s currently away at college.

Having personal goals with the support of online coaching has allowed Jill to make herself a priority even amid her very demanding life. “I am happier person now that I’ve put myself as a priority. I feel so much happier and less stressed.” Being healthy and strong expands beyond Jill’s desire to look a certain way. “My family life demands that I am in shape. My daughter is 65lbs. I have to be strong enough to lift her up. Even going to the park, she needs help up the stairs and going down the slide.”

Reflecting on her past journey, her accomplishments and her future goals, Jill has one piece of advice for women struggling to reach their goals.


“Don’t be afraid to reach out for help. Everyone needs help reaching their goals.

Don’t limit yourself or think you can’t do something just because you haven’t done it before. That’s where I was; I was so scared to go to the gym. Now, I love it and I’m there daily.

If there’s something in your heart that you want to do, reach out to people who can support and guide you… and go for it.”


Do you wish you had someone to REALLY support you FULLY to reach your goals through:

  • EXERCISE (specific to your unique life!), 

  • NUTRITION (specific for your unique body and goals!)

  • Accountability and mindset coaching

  • An approach that takes your long term health and lifestyle into account

  • Peer support from other like-minded women?

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