Kaia Girl Success Story: Michelle T.

There are those times when the couch occasionally wins out over going to the gym. And then there are those times where you truly find yourself in a fitness funk. If you’ve ever experienced any amount of a lack of fitness motivation, you know that it sometimes takes some extra support, an important goal, or even just some fresh excitement to get you back on board. 

michelleTbeforeafter1jpg.jpgThere are those times when the couch occasionally wins out over going to the gym. And then there are those times where you truly find yourself in a fitness funk. If you’ve ever experienced any amount of a lack of fitness motivation, you know that it sometimes takes some extra support, an important goal, or even just some fresh excitement to get you back on board. After Michelle Tafoya of Woodland, California had two surgeries, she found herself out of shape and in one of those funks. But upon discovering Kaia FIT, Michelle revived her motivation, found new strengths, and learned more about what foods she was eating. It wasn’t long before she was running, jumping, lifting, and eating herself to a stronger, healthier woman!

Read how Michelle did it and what she can teach you about getting motivated! 

Name: Michelle Tafoya

Kaia FIT Location: Woodland, CA

What brought you into Kaia?

My sister-in-law had found Kaia before her wedding and loved it. She would talk about it, but I never really knew what it was. Fast forward about a year – a friend of mine (Michelle Oatman) joined Kaia in my town and had amazing results. When I asked her what she was doing she took me to a class for free to try. I never stopped going after that first day.

What were some of your initial goals?

I had gone through two surgeries prior to going to my first class – both partial hysterectomies. Because of those surgeries I had stopped running and exercising and was in the worst shape of my life. On top of that, I was just in a funk. I felt out of shape, overweight and knew I wouldn’t be self-motivated to go back to my gym in a meaningful way. I needed something more. I needed motivation and support on top of seeing results. I found it with Kaia. The sisterhood was something I never even knew existed.

What were some of your fears about starting a new workout and nutrition plan?

I wasn’t fearful of the new workout. I’m a pretty competitive person so to me that was just a new challenge that I was looking forward to. The nutrition plan was the thing that scared me. I remember my first Brik. I was excited to start something new – and then I saw the cookbook and menu plan. I freaked out! I had no clue what some of the ingredients in most of the recipes were. My husband sensed my panic and he sat me down and read through the book with me. At the advice of one of my Kaia coaches I picked one shake, one soup and one salad and made it for the week just so it was manageable since I was a newbie. That was a lifesaver for me!

What were some of the first positive things you noticed about your body?

My energy level was the FIRST thing I noticed! I wasn’t dead by the time I ended my workday and commute. I had energy to interact with my kids and enjoy family time – even after my evening Kaia class. My taste buds also completely changed. I adapted rather quickly to the new Kaia plan and started to venture out and try new recipes. Last but not least....my butt shrank! I’m only 5’...no inches...just 5’ tall, so when I put on weight it hits my tummy, butt and thighs. I was amazed at how quickly my body transformed.

Did anything surprise you?

My strength! I was a runner and a former gym rat. I thought in my past I had been in good shape but I was wrong. My kickboxing and spin classes really didn’t give me strength. Running gives you stamina, but not strength. Kaia has given me strength I never even knew was attainable. I can do pull-ups! I couldn’t even do one when I started and now I can do 10. It’s also changed my priorities. When we go on family vacations, I look at what outdoor activities we can all do together - instead of looking for the best restaurants. My entire outlook on life has shifted and my family has been really supportive of it.

What were some of the challenges you faced as you went along?

My challenges were all in implementing a new nutrition plan. I have two kids who don’t like most of what I cook/eat now so I’ve tried to slowly introduce things to them. I meal prep for myself every weekend and even started a food swap group with 6 other ladies. We meet every Sunday night and swap Kaia-friendly meals. That way, I only have to cook one meal and walk away with 7 different meals. I eat a different dinner than my family every night. That’s okay though because I’m eating clean and slowly getting them to try new things.

How did you work to overcome them?

The food swap (mentioned above) helped! It cut down on the money I spend on groceries, cut down on my food prep time, and provides a variety of meals for the week!

What role did/does Kaia have in supporting you along your journey?

Kaia keeps me motivated and accountable. If I miss a class I have coaches and kaia sisters who notice and ask. If I’m sick or injured, my coaches modify the workouts. Being a woman and a mom is tough. We have huge expectations that we put on ourselves and Kaia is the one hour for ME - to focus on myself and give back to my body.

How did your eating change? Do you have some favorite healthy recipes?

My eating changed significantly. I eat a lot more vegetables. I’ve even modified family recipes without people noticing. I use a lot of quinoa and before Kaia I had never eaten it. I swap out flour and sugar for clean alternatives. I’ve eliminated pasta except for special occasions and I limit meat consumption.

What parts of the programs would you recommend to others?

All of it. I tell people to just come. Come to one workout. If you like it, join and just get past the first two weeks. After that, your body adjusts. Every person is different and will like different parts of the program. I personally like the sisterhood. I feel like I can do any workout, no matter how challenging because the sisterhood in my class motivates me. I just do my best at every class.

How have your goals changed over time?

My goals now are to stay focused, especially during the holidays and to maintain my health. I now try to also practice balance. I have cheat days and date nights with my husband – but then I get back at it. In the beginning I was very rigid. I did everything by the book. Now I try to give myself some flexibility.

What is your favorite Kaia workout?

I love line workouts and station workouts because it forces interaction and teamwork.

Is there anyone in particular that you’d like to thank for pushing you?

Coach Kelsey and Coach Erin - they both push me further than even I think I can be pushed. If we’re doing a workout and they think I should have a heavier weight or a taller jump box they’ll switch it on me. It’s helped me grow confidence in myself and recognize my newfound strength. It also keeps class challenging.

What are some of your new goals?

Maintain my weight, support other Kaia girls and inspire others.

Do you have any suggestions for anyone looking to join Kaia?

Just come to a class. What do you have to lose? You’ll never regret trying something once, but you’ll always wonder how your life could be different if you didn’t try it and look back on it later on. One hour – that’s all you have to do.

Motivation is everything when making improvements to your health and wellness. Not only did Michelle find that through her intense Kaia FIT workouts, she learned the value of a support network with a group of coaches, and with her friends and family. Surrounding yourself with people who can pull you out of a rut, or just pull you into a stronger version of yourself is what we at Kaia FIT are all about. Are you ready to be a success story?

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