From Start to Finish: Letty’s Inspiring 2.5-Year Fitness Transformation

From Start to Finish: Letty's Inspiring 2.5-Year Fitness Transformation

Letty has, IMO, one of the better OMG fitness transformations that I have worked with. Now, I have to give Letty credit where credit is due; she did the work. 

How Long Did This Take?

Letty was NOT a 30-day fix, and in fact, most people are not 30-day or 90-day fixes… if they were, they would have fixed things by now. Letty was a two-and-a-half-year project. 

We knew the look we were going for and knew this was going to be something that we had to build over time together. I didn’t want to overwhelm and burn her out after 3 months, we wanted to solve the problem and get a lifestyle that would stick. 

So we mapped out a multi-year game plan with milestones to get her body look amazing and function amazing. 

Yes, she looked better month after month, but we really started to see the head turns after 9 months and 12 months. 

Now when Letty came in, she was NOT in a bad place, but not the place she wanted to be in.

  • Bodyfat of 37% <=== this is high
  • VERY puffy and inflamed – she always looked like she was carrying a food baby
  • Lots of aches and pains in her joints from doing exercises she didn’t know how to do
  • Not as strong as she needed to be. She was strong enough for life, but to look amazing, she needed to be SO much stronger. 

Letty’s Fitness Transformation – Diet

Elimination Diet. 

One of the first things we did with Letty was put her on an elimination protocol diet to see what foods her body responded well with and what foods caused her to feel puffy. 

We did this in multiple 21-day protocols of lower cals and removing foods that we felt caused her body to blow up with water retention, gut issues, or other IBS issues.

I think it took us about four 21-day diets to find the bulk of the foods that upset her body, but every time we did that, her body started shrinking, looking less and less inflamed.


Letty did tell us that she could go on a lower-cal diet but wasn’t a fan (heck, I’m not either), so we set a goal to diet for 6 weeks, and if she was up for longer, we would go longer, but 6 weeks was the goal. 

We called these mini-diets. It was long enough to see fat loss but not so long that she felt like she was living a life of suffering. 

Side Note: When we put someone on a weight loss diet, we always stress that this diet is NOT a forever thing, just a right-now thing. Dieting to lose weight and dieting to maintain weight loss are two very different things. Most people think that a diet to lose weight is something they must stay on forever when that is the furthest from the truth! You do NOT want to be on a weight loss diet forever… that would suck. 

Letty would diet for 6-8 weeks, then we would back off the diet and maintain her results for 4-6 weeks, and we would repeat the process over and over again until we got her BF at a level she was happy with. 

We started with her calories being very low (around 1400 on her first diet), keeping her macros around 40% protein, and the rest was up to her with carbs and fat. Gradually, we will add in calories over the coming weeks. We never wanted to be in a position where we were always taking away food from her, but instead, we wanted to see how many calories she could eat and STILL lose fat.

Side Note: When it comes to dieting, we just want to get the damn weight off. Mos traditional diet involves a person slowly taking away calories week after week. This feels like punishment; it’s not fun, AND things just go SO SLOW! So we rip the Band-Aid off, go hard in the beginning, get some weight off NOW, and then ADD food over the coming weeks. We find that people are more motivated to stay on a diet longer, especially when we keep adding more and more food to their diets, and they see they are still dropping. 

At one point in time, we had her dropping weight while she was eating 2100 calories (crazy)

Letty’s Fitness Transformation Workouts – Legs, Arms, Abs

Letty did NOT have the amount of muscle that she needed for her to look the way she wanted to look.

While we were dieting her down, we noticed that she was looking skinnier (while not a bad thing) but not athletic. 

Skinny is very different than lean and athletic.

Letty did not want to look skinny, but she did not want to look like a bodybuilder. She wanted more toned arms, legs, and glutes that popped in dresses and jeans and wanted defined, visible abs.  

Taking that into consideration, we built FOUR different body part-specific workout programs. 

  1. Arm focus program
  2. Leg/Glute focus program
  3. Ab focus program
  4. Total body focus

Each program was about 4-8 weeks long with 4 weekly strength training workouts. During those 4-8 week blocks, we made to track Letty’s numbers (the weighted lifted, reps, and sets) and make sure she would beat those numbers (do more weight, more reps, or add another set) every week. 

We always challenged her body to do more because we knew what didn’t challenge her wouldn’t change her.

After the first year, Letty started getting pretty strong, hitting some big numbers.

To name a few…

  • Squatting 225 for 3reps
  • Lunging 165lbs for x10/leg
  • SumoDeadlift 275lbs x 5 reps
  • One Arm DB Rows 50lbs x 10/arm
  • Bench Dips w/90lbs x 12

When she was able to do some of those numbers, we knew that we had her strong enough to start really focusing on building and shaping the muscles with even more targeted workout routines.

Over time, we would alternate between all four programs with 1-2 weeks of recovery time between each program. 

Side Note: Many people that we work with are not strong enough to lift the weight they need to lift to get the muscle they want. So, for some people, we have to focus on creating a better mind-muscle connection and getting them stronger. For example, the legs of women who can lunge 25lbs look very different from those who can lunge 125lbs.

Letty’s Fitness Transformation – Cardio

I can say that we did NOT have Letty doing hours and hours of traditional cardio. 

For most people, we find that high-impact cardio (running and jumping, for example) just beats up the body more than makes it better. I have nothing against running or jumping, but in the long game of fat loss, there are other things you can do that don’t require the recovery time high-impact cardio does. 

So, we had Letty focus on TWO types of cardio during her mini-diets.

  • LIIT – Low-impact interval training
  • LISS – Long impact steady state <=== Really, this is more activity than cardio.

For LITT, we would do rowing, ski-erg, and the fan bike for anywhere from 12-20min 1xweek. We picked exercises that were demanding of the muscles and heart rate but were still easy on the joints. 

For LISS, Letty would primarily walk or hike anywhere from 5 miles to 90 minutes a day, six days a week, keeping her HR between 55-60% of her max. This would usually equate to her walking about 3.2-3.5 MPH… or at a pace like she was running late for something. 

When she was in a mini-diet, we did lots of LISS and one day of LIIT, but when she was in maintenance, she would do very little LISS and some LIIT. 

Letty’s Fitness Transformation – Health and Bloowork

One thing that is always important to us is blood work to make sure her body is always healthy.

A healthy body wants to drop fat and gain muscle. 

We ensured Letty got her bloodwork done every 3-4 months to ensure her body was always in an optimal state. We used the blood work to help guide us with what changes we needed to make with diet and workouts.

This might be the most non-sexy part of training, but if a body isn’t healthy, it makes the transformation process much more difficult. 

Letty’s Fitness Transformation – Playing the Long Game

At RTC, we don’t do quick fixes but instead focus on long-term solutions.

I did NOT want her losing the same 10lbs over and over again, but instead, get the damn weight off and keep it off. 

We wanted to solve the program, not always be starting over. 

With Letty, we talked about playing the long game and not only looking better next month, but even better next year and the next 5 years.

We both wanted her to look better in her 40s and 50s than she did in her 30s, so we took the time to lay the groundwork to ensure that this would be a lifestyle that she would continue to her body would just go further over the coming years. 

In Health,
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