Who are you? And where are you from?
My name is Mina Rasti and I was born and raised in the Queen City! I’m one of the few native Charlotteans still around. Haha! Professionally, I am a high school counselor to the best students in the world at West Charlotte High School and during my free time, I love to read, be with nature, hug on some people, and chill with my cat, Layla.
Lots of people want to get into shape or change their lives. What was your biggest transformation? I can’t remember a time in which I didn’t struggle with my weight. I’ve yo yo’d with gaining and losing weight from my teenage years to today. As a 30-year-old entering a new decade and a new spirit for self-care, I just had ENOUGH. I was ready for a big change and I wanted to finally start loving myself in all areas of life – mentally, physically, and spiritually.
What inspired you to finally take action? And how long have you been working at this?
My before photo was taken in March 2017. Actually, it was on a co-worker’s Instagram story and when I took a peak of her story that day, I was absolutely flabbergasted. I had no idea I had gotten to that point physically. You know, it’s so simple to take selfies from a particular angle to make yourself “look good” and not hit an angle that shows your true weight. I had gotten so used to taking selfies over the years that seeing a photo taken of myself from a distance and from another person just didn’t make sense. I didn’t know that person in the picture and I for sure didn’t want to stay that way.A few months later in June 2017, I went for my annual physical and received my blood test results. I had normal levels of everything but my cholesterol. It was high and I was NOT happy about that. Having a family history of heart failure and strokes didn’t help my thought process during that time and in a way, I felt defeated.Fast forward to October 2017 and I got the news that my grandfather had a stroke. Seeing the rapid decline of his health to eventually his passing in December 2017 took a toll on me mentally and emotionally. It was very difficult seeing a loved one pass and also in the midst of it realizing the depths of my own self-neglect. Once I overcame my initial wave of grief with my grandfather’s passing, I was finally ready to take care of myself. Not just saying I was ready…but actually doing it.
What are some of the major changes you made?
I joined bootcamp after Thanksgiving (thanks to the invite by Monica Martin) and started working out consistently for 4-5 bootcamp days. Once I was getting the hang of it, I joined the Whole 30 challenge on January 8th. That 30-day challenge of being sugar-free, dairy-free, and gluten-free completely changed my eating habits. In fact, since Jan. 8th, I am still sugar-free (77 days! Holy crap!). There are days in which I eat foods that aren’t necessarily the best, but I eat them in moderation. I take an 80/20 approach throughout the week of 80% healthy/whole foods, with 20% (usually two meals a week) of something that’s not. It’s been a good balance for me since January.
What has been the high and low of this new lifestyle?
There are definitely more highs than lows! My highs are feeling SO much better physically (internally and externally). In fact, I have cleared up some digestive issues that I’ve been suffering with for quite some time. It’s amazing what eating whole foods can do for your body. Things that you thought would stick with you for life (ex: acid reflux) are actually not the case.I can only think of one low at the moment and that would be at times being tired after work and not having the energy to workout later in the day. I have to remind myself that I’m doing it out of love and I’m worth the commitment of taking care of all aspects of myself. Without a doubt, I deserve to love myself unconditionally.
How have you stayed motivated to continue?
Consistency, consistency, consistency. Have I mentioned consistency? Haha. Getting into the routine of meal prepping and attending bootcamp 4-5 days a week keeps me going. I know that I hit bootcamp Monday-Thursday’s and Saturday’s with rest on Friday’s and Sunday’s. I know that I hit the grocery store on Sunday’s and meal prep to keep my eating in check. I believe once you develop these habits, they are hard to break loose. Plus, my motivation to be the fittest Mina possible keeps me going. I’m SO looking forward to hitting some major goals this year.
Where do you see yourself going from here?
Right now I am down over 30 pounds and am looking to hit my 50 lb. weight loss goal by summer. Once I do that, I will continue pushing forward until I get to a weight (including measurements) that I feel best at. I am also looking forward to fitting into some work clothes I haven’t worn in about 4 years, run several 5K’s, and attend my very first Warrior Dash in June!
What is the best piece of advice you can give to someone who wants to make a change but hasn’t found the spark to take action?
YOU are the only person that can change who you are; no one else can do that for you. Sometimes it takes hitting rock bottom for that spark to occur, but it doesn’t have to be that way. Take some time to step in front of the mirror and tell yourself daily that you are worth it. Tell your body that you love it and cherish it and that you will take care of it. At the end of the day, what’s stopping you from chasing your health and fitness goals? The average lifespan is 78 years and currently your time is ticking. It’s time to make the most of it. Not later, not tomorrow, but NOW. You can do it. #growthmindset