Submitted by: Ryan Downs
Next up in our NLXF Client Spotlight is Nicki Johnson – our previous three spotlights have all been amazing weight loss stories, but for every great weight loss story, there’s a story for someone who hasn’t lost so much as far as weight goes, but has lost inches and toned. Nicki Johnson is a prime example of that. Insanely hard worker, absolutely AMAZING attitude, and a great representative of this program – which is why she is this week’s NLXF Client Spotlight – take a chance to read a little about her!
Occupation: Communication Instructor at UNI
Q: Nicki, what brought you to NLXF?
A: I came to NLXF after having witnessed Dani and Eric Olson on their journey and their ridiculous results. They both encouraged me (for a long time) to sign-up. I am a competitive person, have always been involved in athletics and been active, but I HATE just running and need variation in my workout or I get bored and lose commitment quickly. I loved everything I was hearing about NLXF. I vowed that after I had our 2nd child, I was going to dive in head first and become an NLXF groupie. So, when Drew was 8 months old, I started Session #9 (my first session).
Q:Take us back to your first week of your first session. What was going through your head?
A: That first week of my first session I was thinking “holy s***, I am SORE and out of shape”. WHOA! I could barely walk, lift my kids, lower myself onto a toilet, and make it through a stretch line without a muscle (okay, every muscle) feeling like it might rip in half. I was out of shape and a few times thought I might die, but I was determined to keep going. Part of what kept me going was the atmosphere in the gym. I have taken other fitness classes, but never had I experienced something like what was happening at NLXF. The camaraderie, encouragement, positivity, and grit of the people in the program took me back to my college basketball days and that was just the motivation I needed to stay the course.
Q: You have a pretty solid attitude in class – leading by both example and vocally as well – if you had to explain your mentality inside NLXF – how would you put it into words?
A: My mentality when I get inside NLXF is not a whole lot different from how I try to approach life. I am an optimistic person by nature, I want to be positive and encouraging to others, and I set goals. Since I am competitive, I always want to do my best and I strive to improve. When it comes to NLXF, I have goals (guns like Dani Olson and Jamie Smith is one of those goals), but I also set goals like not resting/stopping and I try to keep my goals in mind when I walk into the gym. I truly don’t want to “waste” a workout. I also try to get out of my head and not be my own worst enemy. It is easy on a day after the kids were up all night or just being cranky kids, after a rough day at work, or just feeling lousy to check-out and go through the motions. I know that when I am struggling, I look to those that are absolutely killing it in class and think to myself “I can do that or I can get there”. I am not the most fit person or the strongest person in the program. I have not lost the most weight in this program, but I have had results and I am proud of my results so far. That makes me want to encourage others to do their best and push past the mental part. It also helps that I am a talker. Always have been, always will be.
Q: What’s your favorite NLXF day of the week? Why?
A: Prior to this session my favorite day of the week was Tuesday and Gauntlet. There is something about the intensity and pure insanity of the pace on these days that I can’t help but feel a huge sense of accomplishment when I walk out of the room on those 2 days. That being said, I love every day for different reasons.
Q: What keeps you coming back to NLXF?
A: What keeps me coming back to NLXF is easy! It is 100% the people. Like I said earlier, it was obvious to me early on that NLXF was different and that “different” is the people. It is obvious how much each of you trainers love your job and you bring your A game every day. I also LOVE how intense each trainer is, but none of you take yourselves or the class too seriously. This makes you relatable, approachable, and able to get more out of each of us. The clients in the room are pushing each other, coaching each other, and complimenting one another on a regular basis. Everyone wants to see the person next to them have amazing results and get something from the program. There is such a sense of pride among the group when someone is succeeding. I have made friends and met some amazing people in my short time. This program is built on a foundation of community which sets it apart.
Q: Alright – million dollar question – you’re stuck on a deserted island – you get to bring one person with you and it has to be an NLXF trainer – guy or girl – who do you take, and why?
A: The trainer I would take on a deserted island is an interesting question. It would come down to Ryan, Creed, or Allison. You three trainers are the ones that I have had the most interaction with and have most consistently in class. Each of you has a different approach and pushes me in different ways (which by the way also makes this program awesome), but ultimately I would have to say I would bring Ryan. Ryan, you were the first trainer to really push me and it was EARLY in my first session. I think you saw my competitiveness and could tell I wanted results so you got after me regularly and pushed me past what I thought my limits were. You continue to push me and are a complete smart a** which lightens the mood. But I think there is something in your training style that reminds me of a coach and I connect with that. Lastly, I have a huge amount of respect for your fitness journey that you so candidly share in the NLXF booklet.