Her Expedition

by: aiko@empire

People have been asking about my fitness journey. How did I get so toned? How can you lift that? What made you get into fitness? Everyone has a story..  Well here’s a little gist of my journey.. Bad and the Good. Here’s my story…

Growing up my mom raised me to stay busy. She promoted physical activity in my daily routine. Whether it was playing basketball or dancing, my mom always wanted me keep moving.

Fun fact: I played basketball till the age of 14 and dance majority of my life. (My mom was THAT BALLET TEACHER) Having a competitive mindset was one of the things our family valued. I grew up in the generation of fab diets and skinny girls. I was “IN SHAPE” but following fab diets were my thing. I tried it all! Fasting, skinny teas,  no carbs…. YOU NAME IT!

Co-Captain SMHS Dance Team

Moving Along…

College…. I had so much freedom which included my diet. I had that ultimate freedom of drinking and eating anything at anytime. Unlimited swipes at the Dinning Commons. (SJSU DC 2011) Cookies, sushi, pizza, Jamba Juice, etc. Freshman 15  really exists. I had my chunky moments.

SJSU DC 2011

My sophomore year I signed up at my first conventional gym. And man oh man, all I did was run and stayed on the machines. Every time I walked into the gym I always had my head down and avoided the free weights. I had that mentality that if I lifted weights I would look like a dude.. Like I said I grew up in the generation of skinny is beautiful.

2013 Cardio Days

Also I feared that everyone would judge me while I worked out. ( I DIDN’T KNOW ANYTHING) I remembered walking into the gym and seeing an older lady lifting weights and man I was impress.. I was in shock on how her body looks like and the amount of weight she’s lifting. One random day of looking into Youtube videos (who doesn’t do that) I came across with a fitness vlogger, Nikki Blacketter. I was shocked on how much she lifted and how her body structure turned out. I was invested and inspired! After watching inspiration videos on Youtube, I got into the momentum of working out.

Everything happens for a reason.  I fell out. I turned 22 and partied A LOT. I worked at a food joint that served BOMB FRIES (POUTINE)!!! STILL MY WEAKNESS BTW. Emotionally, I was at my lowest. (relationships, family, school, etc) Everything wasn’t going my way. I had low self esteem. Not a lot of people know my struggle of anxiety. I hated showing anything negative. I just didn’t want anyone feel sorry for me. I bottled my emotions which caused me to break. I had a panic attack which scared the crap out of me and my friends. I woke up one day feeling very low and questioned about every little negative thing I did. My body was the spitting image of my mentality. Luckily, I had great roommates that inspired me. They had goals going for them.

Another Fun Fact: ChiChai@empire was one of my college roommates. The year of 2014-2015, I lived with the best people: Nea, Jelyn, Stephanie, Jess, and ChiChai. I haven’t said this before but in all ways y’all pushed me to do good.

That was the year I gave the gym another try. Working out to release any negative energy, looking into cooking and making healthy food choices (which saved me a lot of money). I did my research and followed any fitness guru I admired.

Dec 2014- May 2015

Three years later….

I accomplished a lot because of fitness. Fitness is really a lifestyle. Fitness motivated me physically, mentally and spiritually. Fitness has given me the opportunities to do good.


To the new followers of fitness..

It’s never an easy process. You really need to put in the hours and heart into it. Research the people you admire. Surround yourself with positivity. Keep moving forward and never look into the past. Follow that and that momentum and drive will help you through this fitness journey.

To all fitness experts, gurus, athletes.

KEEP CHALLENGING YOURSELF. Always have the mentality of a student. If we knew every little workout we would just be comfortable and that’s how we plateau.  Also, never judge a new follower because we were once in their shoes..

Lastly, to my old roomies/life friends. Jelyn@empire, ChiChai@empire, Steph, Jess, and Nea…

Thank you for being you. You all really inspire me. Your drive and goals in your lives really helped me figure mines. I love you guys..

There’s no secret to success… It is the result of preparation, determination, hard work, and learning from failure. That’s the beauty of my expedition..


Till next time fwends.


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