Hi all! In honor of our BEST BEFORE AND PRESENT competition, I thought it would be neat to give you a little insight into MY fitness journey. A few clients have asked if I have always been active and fit. It got me thinking, I’ve never really shared my own journey. I guess people would just assume, being in my business, staying fit comes naturally. Well that could not be further from the truth. So here’s my story. Its one not many (if any) truly know. I’m confident there are so many young girls that go through the same roller coaster ride of trying to fit the “mold”. I’ve seen my client’s stories inspire countless people. So I hope someone can be inspired by mine.
My Story in a Nutshell
I’m incredibly grateful for all the things my parents have given me, with the exception of a metabolism that is as slow as dial-up. From a young age I suffered from a case of puggyness. My Pediatrician even suggested a diet. I didn’t think that was necessary, at 10 it was just “baby fat”?! At least that’s what my Mom told me (Mom’s are so sweet). Well that baby fat stuck around. Literally, stuck around my cheeks. But at that time, it didn’t bother me much. I was still a happy-go-lucky kid. With a great perm.
Insert hormones. As I grew older, my weight “issues” really started to bother me. The incredible awkwardness that comes with being a young female, sent me through a period where I was super self-conscious. I literally hated the skin I was in. I wanted to crawl out of it. I would cry myself to sleep at times because I just wanted to be someone else. I wanted to be skinny. I maintained my goofy personality on the outside, but on the inside I was suffering bad. It was the pits. I went through periods of depression, where I would starve myself, then eat too much, then purge, then hate myself for that. Insert giant repeat button. This continued through High School and College. Clearly my “diet regime” was a bit broken, when I reached my heaviest in college.
Sometime after college I started going to the gym, solely because I wanted to lose weight. I didn’t give a rats ass about being fit, and I sure as hell didn’t enjoy exercising (hours on the treadmill). It was a mission to be skinny and that’s it. My relationship with food continued to suffer. I experimented with every diet on the market, which always sent me down a bad path. When I couldn’t stick to them, I felt defeated. Which would cause me to binge. What kind of person can’t control what they put in their mouth?? I felt like a big failure if I “cheated” or fell off the wagon.
For a very long time exercise continued to be a task, and my quick fix attempts in dieting continued. But over time, I noticed the more I worked out, the better my mood was. Less depression, less crying, less mood swings. And I liked that. Slowly, my relationship with exercise began to flourish. I liked working out hard. It was like therapy. I started to make small accomplishments, like running a 5 k, 10k, 7 miler. I cared more about these accomplishments and less about my jean size. I enjoyed seeing myself grow strong. As my relationship with the gym grew, my awareness of healthy food options grew with it. I liked the way I felt when I ate good. I became happier. Becoming more fit made me want to support that strength with food. Not demolish it. I began to look at food as fuel. Not as a cheat or a treat or good or bad. Over time, and I mean years… my relationship with food improved. I stopped restricting foods all together. I stopped hating myself if I had ice cream. I stopped eating shit like flaxseed and chia seeds and crackers made from cardboard all because it was “good” for me. I started to learn how to make things that I craved, in a healthier way. I looked forward to my meals instead of dreading my crouton-less, dressing-less, fun-less salad. I learned how to cook. I practiced being consistent. Not perfect. I tried to make better choices whenever possible. It wasn’t until my late 20’s that I finally felt like I found a good balance with food.
Fast Forward to Today
I frickin love food. I still have cake and wine and pizza and chocolate and bread. I love bread. Because I am human. Because I enjoy life events. Like football games and road races and concerts and weddings. These things are always going to be in my life. But they are not the majority of my life. Learning to NOT GIVE UP ON A WHOLE WEEK/MONTH/YEAR just because of these things, was the learning process. And still is to this day. I find what works best for me is focusing on eating healthy the majority of the time. And that takes discipline. Sometimes that means saying no to fun events. I keep most of my food pretty damn clean. That doesn’t mean boring. I research healthy recipes and I spend time planning meals. I try to log my food and track my nutrients because it helps me stay on track and in balance for my workouts. Eating a ton of crap food makes me feel like crap, mentally and physically. So I try not to give up on an entire day just because I eat a cookie. I don’t always win, I just take it day by day, meal by meal. And MOST of all, I focus on my accomplishments in the gym rather than on the scale.
Next month I will be 35 and in the best shape of my life. Every year that improves. I continue to get stronger. My physical achievements have hands down been the most incredible motivator for me. I can honestly say the ability to be active is one of the greatest gifts I have ever received. It’s a gift most of us take for granted. So many go through life never knowing the potential they have. When I am unmotivated, stressed, or just feeling lazy. As cheesy as it is, I think about all my KFIT ladies who I need to stay motivated for. I think about growing old and losing these years. I think about those who could never run or walk because of disabilities or loved ones that have been taken away. I think how lucky I am to be able to wake up healthy.
You Can Do it Too, Just Change Your Mind Set
Sounds simple right? What I wish could teach people is that finding and maintaining health is a life long journey. Not a quick fix. Even when the battle is won, you continue to fight it. Once you reach your goals, you have to work harder than ever to maintain them. Give yourself time to change, slowly. A year, not 6 weeks. Stop trying to fit into your jeans from 20 years ago. Take your focus off vanity and focus solely on being fit. It isn’t about being skinny or doing exercises you dread. Find a movement you love and do it repeatedly. Do what your body was meant to do. Move. Whether its Zumba, Yoga, Spin, Trapezing, a stroll in the park or hike up a mountain. Set realistic goals and tackle them. This is what continues to motivate progress. Reaching your goal weight will lose its glory. Accomplishments every year never will. And overall, just enjoy the journey. Because it sure is a short one.