Sunday, January 11, 2015

What is it like to work with Vanessa - Inside Kalin's Program

Kalin is a gorgeous young woman with energy that could match a packed football stadium. You feel it instantly. She vibrates on an awesome frequency. But when Kalin sat down with me for the first time, she was feeling dark, distant and grey. Kalin approached me apprehensivey in November. She had been stuck in a rut for the past year emotionally, and physically for many years longer. She told me she was frustrated because she had been telling herself for so long that she wanted to change, and wanted certain things for her life, but her constant lack of ability to follow through had her questioning if she even knew what she wanted at all. She  had doubts in her ability to follow through with diet, exercise and just about everything else and wanted a change. She set New Years Day as a goal: not for a certain weight or distinct acheivement, but to start the first year in as long as she could remember NOT thinking about weight. She wanted to feel energized, excited and confident in herself and in her life. Here's what happened, in her own words, from her heart...

We all have a moment where we look at our lives and think, "I can do better..."

I remember lying in bed thinking to myself: HOW will I ever come out of this?

I had left school in Philadelphia right before finals (an already stressful time) to come back to Pittsburgh. My dad was in the ICU recovering from a stroke and my family and I were practically living at the hospital... My life (and everything I owned) was still in Philadelphia, but packing up my apartment and wrapping it up there was impossible at the time. Sleep was low, stress was high, and life SUCKED. Major changes were happening faster than I could cope with and because I didn't know what to do - I did nothing...

Life. completely. knocked. me. down.
I wasn't eating right, barely sleeping and I sure as hell wasn't working out. My life was completely out of balance. Needless to say, it took a few months of doing nothing before I had 'my moment.' When I did, it finally occurred to me that things were going to keep happening that were out of my control - but not taking care of myself could no longer be one of them.

You might be wondering how those events led me to Vanessa of Sweat and Butter. I didn't roll out of bed one day and think, "I wish I practiced yoga and drank green smoothies!" I rolled out of bed and thought, "I wish I was happier."

I knew I needed help getting myself back on track - and I knew I had to try something I had never tried before. The hope of potential happiness is what led me to Sweat and Butter.

If you take a look at my 'Kalinspiration' posts, you'll see how much Sweat and Butter taught me. I learned that the food I put into my body does impact my energy levels, how I feel and how I function. I learned about vitamins and what they can do for your mind. I learned how to do hot yoga, barre fitness, kickboxing, TRX and boot camp workouts. I learned that being 'healthy' is so much more than green smoothies and salmon for dinner; it's how you approach your life. Most of all, I learned that living a healthy lifestyle and being balanced is more about shifting your mentality from thinking you can't to believing you can - and committing yourself to that belief. 

Before I started working with Vanessa, I was always living in extremes. I either took on way too much or nothing at all. No matter which extreme I was in at the time, I never made time for what is most important: my health. Working with a Health Coach helped me recognize my unhealthy patterns. Having another person to hold me accountable - helped me correct them.

When I started my 'Challenge,' I was approaching it like a finishline - a deadline I would reach and become healthy. The truth is, it's a never-ending journey - and one that I am eager to continue! Throughout my '50 Day Sweat and Butter Challenge,' I learned more about health than I ever thought I would know. I strengthened muscles and qualities in myself that have changed me as a person. With Vanessa's help, I was able to escape a really dark place in my life and regain my balance.

Most people gauge success stories in measurements: pounds lost, inches shed, muscles built. But it's really not about the changes in the 'after' photo at all. In fact, what makes a story a 'success' has nothing to do with what you lose, and everything to do with what you gain.

 Kalin Alberts, Pittsburgh, PA

I graciously thank you Kalin: for the opportunity to work together, and for you having the courage to share your story to insprire others. You can reach Kalin to hear more about her experience or ask her your questions at and check out her entire program photo journal on instagram @kalinspiration.


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