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Christina Smith's fitness transformation began with a moment of realization that many of us can relate to. While gazing upon a photo that didn't seem to reflect who she really was, she started to think twice about her lifestyle. Having struggled with body image since she was a young girl, it was incredibly important to Christina to overcome these issues once and for all.

Christina Smith0224-year-old Christina had never a “skinny" girl. As many people are, she was always a little insecure, envying whom she perceived as the tall, naturally slim girls. After graduating high school, she put on about 10 pounds a year but didn't seem to notice it much at first. Although she felt like she was chubby, she didn't realize how much weight she was steadily gaining. In 2012, she and her fiancé at the time did a beach photo shoot.

“The girl I saw in those pictures wasn't who I saw in the mirror!"

After the photo shoot was finished, they entered the photographer's office to view the pictures on a flat screen television. He scrolled through at least 100 pictures and by the end of it, Christina could no longer hold back the tears. She realized in that moment that the girl in those pictures was not who she wanted to be. She made myself a promise that she would never look like that again.

Starting out at 160 pounds, Christina now weighs 115. She believes that in order for anyone to truly commit to drastic changes, they have to be 100% ready in their own heart, no matter what anyone else may be telling them. “I got to the point where it was no longer ‘I'd like to look different,'" Christina explained. “Now it had become, ‘I am going to be healthy. Not for a guy, not for my friends, not to be more attractive or to wear cuter clothes… but for MYSELF and to be proud of who I am!'"

To get there, she tried many different diets – low carb, no carb, paleo, gluten-free, low fat - and lost a little weight with all of them, but couldn't maintain. She had struggled with body image and binge eating in the past, and some of these diets even triggered more binging.

Christina eventually found that what works for her is making healthy choices without depriving herself or getting too obsessed. Meal management is a crucial component of staying on track nutritionally, as you can control your food options no matter where you are. While searching for food prep bags that would help her continue to make healthy food choices, Christina stumbled across 6 Pack on Instagram, and the rest was history.

“6 Pack inspired me to get a prep bag to take with me to work so that I didn't have to worry about not having healthy options there."

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Christina makes sure to eat at least 1 gram of protein per pound of body weight. Her carbs come from oatmeal, whole grain bread, brown rice, sweet potatoes, fruits, and veggies. She tries not to eat anything highly processed, and notes that planning her meals ahead is critical. She changes up her workout routine every couple months, but as of now her schedule has been Sunday: Chest/Shoulders, Monday: Biceps/ Triceps, Tuesday: Back, and Wednesday: Legs/Abs. She takes one rest day, but lets her body decide when it needs the rest based on her busy work schedule.

An important piece of advice that Christina lives by is not to focus on how much farther you have to go in your fitness transformation.

“Focus on how far you have already come and everything you have already accomplished. Getting healthy isn't about just looking good; it's about feeling good. It's about overcoming everything you never dreamed possible and continuing to strive to be better than the person you were yesterday."

When she first started heavy lifting, she was afraid of looking manly. Now, she competes with herself to lift heavier than the last time! She doesn't want to be strong for a girl. She just wants to be STRONG. We couldn't be more excited for and inspired by her fitness transformation, and we wish her all the best of luck in future training!

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For even more of our inspiring fitness transformation tales, explore our Transformations Series and find out how people use their meal management systems, gym backpacks, sports duffle bags, or gym totes to attain the minds and bodies they've always deserved and desired.