Welcome back, soul tribe! I am so excited to bring you ANOTHER episode of Soul Series! This time is with Amanda Katherine Loy (Giles) who is a Chicago coach and speaker. She is the host of the Live your F*ck Yes Life, runs a successful Beachbody business and inspires women all over the world to ditch the diet and live your fuck yes life!
I connected with Amanda back in 2017 and was in one of her Beachbody programs. I had done Beachbody before and was looking to get back into fitness in a time when I didn't have time to leave my house and get to a gym. I then met her last September and adored how much she is in-person as she is online. Her personality, warmth, smile and laughter are contagious and she is just a genuine person and friend.
Enough about my story, let's get into hers. Enjoy!
1. How did you get started and involved in Beachbody coaching, and did you start it knowing you’d do it as a full-time kind of gig?
It's so funny, because all of this happened SO by accident. I guess the best things do though. I never expected to get involved with Beachbody, and actually for a really long time I was like "I will never get involved with this company" because I had heard about and had such negative experiences with network marketing companies.
November 2015, I hit a major wall in my life. Some might call it a quarter life crisis, but whatever it was, it wasn't pretty. From a career perspective, I was feeling suuuuper unfulfilled. I was happy whenever I was at rehearsal (acting is my jam and it lights me up like crazy), but working the 5 other jobs just to pay the bills and keep myself afloat? It was slowly sucking my soul. And I was feeling “gross” about my body because of all of the comfort food I was consuming to numb myself from everything. I was turning into this negative nancy, pessimistic and burnt out version of myself that I could barely recognize and it was really scary.
Since 2012, health & fitness had been a big part of my life. I'd been growing an active community on my health and fitness Instagram account and while I certainly didn't have it all together, I knew health was important to me. I was projecting a positive outlook on life and I knew I had influence on other women who followed me, but I needed something more. I needed something for ME!
And then I met my coach and now best friend, Anna Locke, and everything clicked for me. She had a fitness instagram just like me and I'd been following her journey to entrepreneurship based on this health coaching thing for a while. She was doing her thing, I was doing mine -- until one day after hearing me go on and on about how I was so tired of my life, she said:
"Girl -- you love social media and are passionate about health & fitness. You're basically doing all the things a coach does except you're not getting paid for it...have you ever considered doing what I do and becoming a coach?"
I was flaberghasted. I rocked out my social media because it lit me up. I never imagined I could do it as a career... my gut told me YES, but I was TERRIFIED. But I said YES and it was the best decision I've ever made.
Did I expect it to lead to something more full-time? Hell no.
I was hoping to just make a difference in ONE persons life, not upwards of 400 in 2 years. It's been such a wonderful (and hard) adventure, and one that I am grateful for every single day.
2. You inspire tons of women through Team Inspire Joy and even have hosted a workshop in Chicago in the fall focusing on women stepping into their own. Did you always want to become a voice for women and a woman who helps other women break their own barriers?
Honestly, no. I didn't think my story mattered at all. Someone else inspired to take positive action because of anything I said? I couldn't have imagined it.
My whole life I've been very active in being a voice for change -- I was super active in being a voice for others in high school and volunteering for organizations I really believed in. And as an actor, I have always been pulled to projects that made the audience really think and create dialogue.
Did I envision being a voice for women and someone that would help other women break through their own barriers? Hell no.
All I know is I went through so much and didn't have someone in my corner. I thought I was alone. And it's my mission to be as vulnerable and transparent as I can every freaking day so that someone like me knows they aren't alone in feeling the way they do -- and that they can be supported along the transformation process to becoming their best self.
3. You are an actress too, and I remember seeing your IG stories that you had been doing two shows at once. How do you balance acting, your business and your teaching?
You know it's funny -- my life BEFORE my business felt way more unbalanced than it does now. Being an actor, while it may seem glamorous, is such a tough career. You work crazy long hours (I often wouldn't get home until after 11:00 every night) and unless you're a movie star, you're paid shit. I was working so many jobs just to make ends meat and ran myself to the bone. It was awful and I was super unhappy.
My business? It's been SUCH a blessing in that way. It's been work, and taken a shit ton of consistency, but the beauty of it is it's ALL on my terms. I can work whenever I need to for my schedule, as long as I have wifi. And because of coaching, I've actually been able to say YES to more acting jobs and creative projects that light me up (along with actual time to put into bettering myself from the inside out -- 'cause it's my JOB to show up every single day as my happiest and healthiest self, and that's a pretty rad job description I think)
So I guess it's actually not tough to balance at all -- I keep busy doing things I LOVE and that's a life I will always choose.
4. What are you currently obsessed with? (TV shows, movies, podcasts, books, a meditation, a color, whatever!)
Always obsessed with podcasts and my favorite weekly go tos are: The Almost 30 Podcast, The Life Coach School Podcast and The Earn Your Happy Podcast.
With the new year having just started, I have been really deep diving into my intentions and setting an action pan for all my projects and I've been loving using The Your Best Year 2018 workbook by Lisa Jacobs!
I also recently the movie The Greatest Showman and holy shitballs, that soundtrack? It's been on repeat. Go listen to "This Is Me" and make it your freaking anthem.
5. I know we’ve talked 1:1 about some upcoming things for you in 2018 — is there anything you’d like to share with my readers about what’s coming next for Amanda?
Oh my goodness 2018 is going to be HUGE. I've already got some amazing things on the docket (a couple of things I can't share quite yet), but I CAN tell you they're launching early on in 2018 so you will find out soon enough ;)
If you're on my email list, you'll get the inside scoop before the rest of the world soooo rock on here (bit.ly/busybabesguide) and grab my FREE busy babes guide to healthy living e-book too!
6. You and I both have had issues with our bodies, sadly many women do. I’ve seen some of yours posts online about it, but you could take the readers
through how you got to where you were to where you are now in terms of your body and how you feel/see it?
When I started out on my path to a healthy lifestyle in 2012, I wanted results FAST. I was a size 10, felt perpetually sluggish and I kept thinking: "If I could just be skinny, then I would be happy." So I started a quick fix slim down program & I became a cardio junkie, started counting my calories (pretty sure I spent more time on that calorie counting app than I did texting my friends), deemed any type of carb completely off limits and my entire day/ emotional energy revolved around my 2 hour long workouts & figuring out what I could eat with my limited meal choices.
In about a month, I started seeing weight come off faster than I ever have (little did I know at the time that it was because my body wasn't at all getting what it needed to function!) I felt "good" that I was seeing changes, but my energy was at an all time low and I didn't have much of a life outside of my fitness world because it took up so much of my freaking time. Between working out for at least an hour and a half every single day, taking two showers because I would get two workouts in and then drinking copious amounts of water to curb my grumbling tummy and running to the bathroom every half hour, I didn't have time to enjoy my life. Plain and simple, I was not happy.
Fast forward to a year later -- I had gained all that weight back, and then some. The summer of 2013 was the worst summer of my life. You know when you are SO overwhelmed with life that all you can do is cry and eat your feelings? Well, that pretty much summed up my summer. I literally would spend every day crying. I felt worthless and I didn't recognize the person that was in front of me. And, since I still had such a negative relationship with food, I resorted to eating everything and anything in front of me because that was the only thing that "made me feel better". Pints of Ben & Jerrys half baked, a pan of brownies, a bag of peanut m&ms, an entire bag of Target trail mix -- you name it, I ate it.
The past 2 years have been a journey to self care and self acceptance. I've discovered workouts that actually light me up and don't take over my entire life. I've completely recovered from my binge eating disorder and have made my happiness and health a priority.
And instead of focusing my "success" on the numbers on the scale and calorie intake, I focus all about how I FEEL. I look at myself in the mirror and can truly say I love myself, which is something I never thought could happen. It didn't happen overnight but it has been the greatest gift on the planet and one I intend on paying forward for the rest of my life.
7. What’s the biggest intention or goal you’re working on and WHY is it important to you?
My intention word for the year is UNAPOLOGETIC.
I want to embrace the fear and take action anyways instead of letting it hold me back.
I want to have the courage to express ALL OF ME (especially the weird-ness) without apology.
This year is going to be HUGE because I'm choosing to make it so -- I'm ready to stop holding myself back and going after my big ass dreams.
Rapid Fire Round
8. Vanilla or Chocolate?
Chocolate NO QUESTION
9. Favorite crystal?
10. Coffee or tea?
11. Spinach or kale?
Spinach -- HATE kale.
12. Workout with friends/husband or workout alone?
Workout LIVE online with my team! (We use a video conferencing program every day to rock out our at home workouts together and hold each other accountable)
13. Physical book or e-book?
Physical book -- nothing beats that smell!
Honestly, how badass is she? I love listening to her podcast and connecting with her in-person when I can (sadly, not enough!) She is truly an infectious being with such warmth and happiness. I hope you guys enjoyed this interview!
Where can you find Amanda?
Facebook Group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/liveyourfyeslife
Live your power. Share your truth. Love fiercely.