Sikra Fit: My 8 Week Journey to a Better Me
In January I set on this journey of working on a stronger, healthier me. I had absolutely no idea on how to create an effective work out. I used weight and cardio machines, but I lacked the creativity for workouts and meals. I tried everything from an online personal trainer, gym memberships to self-help blogs. None had provided me with any results that could be maintained.
I met the owner of Sikra Fit, Sierra Kramer, whose passion for fitness and hair was evident. Few trainers can even come close to her experience as a former competitive bodybuilder. I decided to participate in her 8 Week Challenge not knowing fully, what to expect.
A week before the start of the challenge, Sierra created a Facebook Group for everyone participating. She provided a list of what workout equipment would be needed, a pdf of the training program, and meal plans with recipes. She posted a video going over goal setting and how the training program will be challenging, and we will get off track and miss a workout or cheat and have that piece of cake, but the important thing was to get back into the program and move forward. This was a comforting and refreshing approach to fitness. With past trainers I have had, I felt kind of shamed when I admitted that I had a dessert. You feel week. By her comforting and human approach to working out, I didn’t feel like I was under intense pressure to be perfect. We asked her questions, set our personal goals, provided our measurements, and our “before” pictures to document our progress through the program.
In the pdf she provided there are links to YouTube videos on how to do each exercise properly. There were food suggestions in the pdf as well. You were not obligated to stick to her recipes but you could create your own based on the portion size suggestions and type of food assigned for the meal (protein, carbs, fruit, veggies, etc.). I felt that I was set up for success from the very beginning.
“My Goal is to simply become a better version of myself.”
Week 1: This was the most painful and challenging part of the entire challenge. Not because the workouts are harder than the rest of the challenge but that your body is adjusting to the new workouts and importantly, the meal schedule. The first three days you are not just battling muscle soreness, but you are dealing sometimes with a little bit of hunger. Many of us are used to eating three meals and some are larger than others. Under her plan, you eat 5 times a day with three meals and two snacks. Your portion sizes are smaller, so it took that week for my body to adjust to the new portion sizes. Not to mention you must give up that Starbucks mocha latte you love. Giving up my “fufu” coffee drinks is hard. The only coffee drinks you were allowed were Americanos and black coffee. Being the rebel that I am, I cut coffee out of my diet cold turkey which to say the least, is brutal.
Week 2: My body acclimated to the new protein infused meal plans. I know many of you are thinking, ugh, eating healthy is not fun. I used to think this way. After trying her recipes, I thought they were delicious! If you are looking for healthy recipes and all your finding are disgusting meals, you’re not looking on the right websites.
As I continued the workouts, I noticed that my body was stronger than it was the week before. I was able to increase the amount of weight and do the circuits fast. I did not expect to see such and improvement this quickly. It was suggested that we introduce BCAA’s into our post-workout regimen. I have never heard of this type of supplement. I must say, I do not know if I would have gotten through the challenge without it. It truly helped with muscle recovery and helped give me a Vitamin B energy boost that is more effective than coffee. During my check-in for this week I lost a half-inch on my wait, hips, legs, and arms. This was motivation to continue!
Week 3 & 4: By this time my body was used to my new schedule of 5 am workouts with a 9pm bedtime. Coffee was a thing of the past and my bank account thanked me for it. The new workout program for these two weeks increased in the number of exercises and reps in each circuit. Sierra provided workout videos of her doing each of the assigned workouts while providing tips on how to make it more challenging or how to modify them to accommodate any physical limitations. The meals called for increasing our protein consumption to help build muscle. Most women are warry about lifting weights. I can tell you from my personal experience, I have not become bulky or traded in my feminine figure for a more masculine one. It helps burn fat, reduces your size while making you stronger. Yes, muscle weighs more than fat but you can still drop a size or more in your jeans! I personally would rather be stronger and have less bodyfat than worry about what my scale shows as my weight.
Week 5 & 6: This was the halfway point in the challenge. One thing we all forget about doing these fitness challenges is the mental toll it can take. Many fitness programs are about just pushing through and don’t give you much guidance as to how to “push through”. Sierra had this covered. On a group Facebook Live she asked us to participate in an exercise where we write down things that have held us back and tear them up. This was a way of physically showing how you are not going to think that way anymore. This was powerful and the much-needed motivation to continue. Sierra also checked in with each of us individually to see if we had any questions or concerns. This personal touch helps set her apart from all the other online personal trainers. The other participants would each day post something on the private FB group to help encourage one another. The participation from everyone was yet another thing that made this program more personal. In a gym fitness class, you may have your group that you see and hang out but, this is hard to translate online. This comradery really helped bring that tribe element to the program.
Week 7 & 8: I enjoyed the workouts these last two weeks. They were like the ones in the first two weeks but with less rest and increased reps. As far as the meals, we were each challenged with finding or creating out own meals while following the measurements and food types. This really helped me feel comfortable with making my own food decisions when I am traveling. Sierra also sent out an email to each participant educating us on macronutrients and how to determine what each of our body needs. It is an eye opener in that your body needs almost 1200 calories a day to make your body function!
“Each day is a new opportunity to improve yourself. Take it and make the most of it. “
So, you are all probably wondering, what were my results from 8 week challenge? For being a tiny person, I felt like I made ton of progress. I went from a size 2 to a 0 again. My energy was the highest it has ever been. I no longer feel the need to take a nap in the afternoons. As far as the numbers go…
Weight loss – 3.2 lbs
Waist- Lost 2 inches
Hips- Lost 1 inch
Leg- lost 1.5 inches
13.8% Body Fat
Pros: For $250 you get three workouts plus a bonus workout each week, meal plans and recipes, a tribe of supporters, a personal interaction with the owner on your concerns and goals, flexibility and privacy to do your workouts whenever and wherever you want, and education on how to maintain your progress that will last you a lifetime! This program is worth every penny and you will be hard pressed to find one just like it.
Cons: It only lasts 8 weeks. I wish it was longer. This a program that is done once a year. Sikra Fit does have a 6 week Do It Yourself (DIY) program that is called Your Fix in 6. It is a bit more advanced than the 8 Week Challenge I went through.
Overall, I highly recommend this program to anyone who wants a holistic approach to fitness. Sikra Fit aims to educate each person on how to properly fuel their body, how to exercise, and how to mentally prepare yourself for the journey to a better you!
If you are interested in participating in Sikra Fit’s future programs checkout the website at www.sikrafit.com and follow her on Facebook @sikrafit.