Saturday, June 11, 2011

The Importance of Before & After Photos

When beginning a new workout routine you might hear this: "Make sure you take before pictures..."

But, why?

Before photos will mark the beginning of an important transformation in your life. It will mark the existence of a new YOU! Looking back, I wish I would have known enough to take before photos of myself. It's never too late, though. I am constantly taking photos of myself because my body is always changing and I want to see those results!

For instance, I plan on starting Beach Body's Insanity (same company that produce the famous P90X) on Monday morning and you bet your ass I will be taking my before shots! From then on, I plan to take photos of myself consistently - the same time, same place, and in similar clothing (sports bra and shorts).

I truly did not and was not going to post the "before and after" photos I found of myself, but I figured I've worked hard and come a long way and it's a good reminder for myself to never return to where I was at. Not to mention the "after" photos are great motivation to keep pushing myself every day! I honestly couldn't find many before pictures because I distinctly remember always opting out of photos because I was ashamed of what I looked like. Thank God those days are over and never to return again! And who knows - maybe these photos will motivate and inspire YOU!

The following pictures are in chronological order. In the first shot you can tell I stopped working out and continued eating and drinking whatever I wanted. I was starting to become very soft.

All the photos from September 2008 is just before I hit my heaviest weight - 148lbs. I'd say I was probably around 142lbs. in these photos.

The two photos you see from 2009 and 2010 is where I had lost a bunch of weight and was just maintaining. I didn't know much about diet nor did I know much about the kinds of exercises I should be doing. This is where I stuck with cardio and the same lifting regimen for several weeks at a time. As you can see, no real results!

BUT throw the right diet, supplements, and exercise in there and you get all the photos of me in 2011.

In all of the 2011 pictures, I feel stronger, happier, healthier, and amazing! I feel stronger not only physically, but mentally and emotionally.

PS -- If you want to enlarge each picture, just simply click on each one.

June 2008 
September 2008  

September 2008 - Heaviest

September 2008

May 2009

September 2010

February 2011

May 2011

May 2011
June 2011


  1. Magen,
    are you going to get the "insane" t-shirt? I am starting a workout regime on Monday ... any pointers? In my hayday I was a size zero eating 0 carbs and running 8-10 miles a day, but that was almost 4 years ago and now I'm a SAHM with two toddlers ... and I've got nearly 40 lbs to shed. I'm scared, but very very hopeful. I know I am capable of looking and feeling better, I just need to commit!
    Danielle (McAuley)

  2. Hey Danielle! Good to hear from you! I'd like to get the "insane" t-shirt! I think I can get it if I take the before and after photos and submit them! Good for you for starting a new workout regime! As far as pointers what are you looking for? Ways to say focused and motivated? Honestly, it just comes from within. You have to want to do it and you just have to do it. I definitely wouldn't NOT eat carbs. I plan to post about proteins, fats, and carbs very soon so make sure you read about that one. No need to be scared - be excited! This is an important time in your life! You're ready to get back into shape and look and feel great, what's there to be scared about that? :) If you know you are capable of this, then you can absolutely, without a doubt, do this! What I would do is start making small goals and slowly get back into a routine. You don't want to overdo it because you'll get frustrated and exhausted and the chances of you continuing are slim. If you can't have anyone take photos of you, stand in a mirror and take them of yourself. Don't worry so much about the number on the scale, but instead focus on how you feel in your clothes and how you feel about your body. What motivates me is looking up to those who do workout and who do look good, the ones who I'd like to look like. Each day I write up my own workout routine and I follow that. Doing something like that might help for you. I hope this helps! If you have any other questions, please don't hesitate to ask! You can shoot me a message on Facebook or on my email - GOOD LUCK! Keep me posted on how it goes.

  3. I think this is incredibly sad. You were beautiful before, and your "thinnest" pic and more recent pics are setting poor examples for women.

  4. I'm curious to know how my more recent pics are setting "poor examples" for women?

  5. Magen, Good advice now that I am getting in shape I too wish I had before and after photos to see the progress. As for the nah sayers above remember this qoute " those who matter dont mind, and those that mind dont matter" I think a strong fit confident woman is a great example for young women! Good luck with insanity i tried p90x last week but wasnt quite up for the challenge, i am currently looking for another workout dvd if u have any suggesgions? Keep blogging! Melanie ( mcauley 01)

  6. Thanks Melanie! And you're right, there's just something so sexy and confident about a strong, fit woman! And it certainly is a great example for women, so I definitely don't see how it's a poor example. A poor example would be if I was emaciated and preaching about not eating and becoming anorexic. I was out of shape and at my biggest weight before and I wasn't comfortable with it, so I took control of it and got into shape and have put on muscle and look and feel great. If anything that's a positive example for women. As far as workout DVDs go, that's something that's almost like a trial and error, and you have to stick with it and finish it out to the end to see results (of course combine that with the right eating habits as well). It also depends on your goal and what you want to achieve. Insanity is mostly a cardio DVD whereas the p90x combines strength training with cardio and plyometrics. Check out and read through all the DVDs they have. I'm sure there is something that would coincide with your needs and wants. Good luck and let me know if you have any other questions!

  7. Magen, I think your a great example to all women! Obesity is a very serious and prevalent issue that the majority of women in the United States are struggling with! Your words are inspiration and should by no means be associated with a "poor example". Don't ever let anyone or anything getting in the way of sharing your amazing and dedicated experiences!

    -"our future is a reflection of our past"

  8. Thanks Itso!! I really appreciate your support and enthusiasm! I truly like sharing my experiences with others and if it can help them, then all the better!