Fitness and health were not always important to me.
There were times when I struggled with my weight, struggled with body image, struggled to diet, and struggled to enjoy my life because I was constantly battling feelings of discomfort with my body.
I really spent many years trying to figure out how to become the healthy person I wanted to be and took many detours trying to get there.
Why am I sharing this with you? Why does this matter?
Because sometimes we can assume that people have it easy or have always had what they currently have.
I'm at a healthy body fat percentage and a reasonable level of fitness so you might assume, "Well yeah if I started out like that, I could maintain it too."
Or you might assume that I could not possibly understand what it is like to have a hard time with workouts or eating nutritiously or the fear or self-ridicule or doubt that interferes with becoming healthier, fitter individual.
This just couldn't be farther from the truth.
Through the years, I experienced MANY highs and lows, quite literally, with my weight.
I was keeping a food journal at 14, buying Slimfast at 16, joined Weight Watchers at 18, and continued a yo-yo cycle throughout college.
Do I know what it is like to be 200 pounds overweight and have difficulty just getting around? No, I don't.
But I do know what it is like to try to find quick fixes or buy products to solve a problem, only to have limited success and then a rebound.
I know how frustrating it is to feel like you're doing "so well" with your nutrition and workouts but not seeing results on your body or on the scale.
I know what it is like to look at people I'd consider fit and healthy and wonder how in the world to become like them.
I know what it is like to severely restrict my diet, binge on ice cream at 2am, and then wake up with both a queasiness and pang of guilt in my stomach.
I know what it is like to spend hours on the elliptical or treadmill punishing myself for these binges.
What is the difference now? How did I get to a place of balanced health, where I don't count calories and maintain a healthy weight?
I found weights.
I found a way to track my nutrition that WORKED for me.
Once I started experiencing results, I was hooked. It was fun. It was motivating. It was EXCITING to see how I could feel by exercising my body and fueling it with delicious food.
For the last five years, I've been able to enjoy this state. There are still good days and bad days; some days I overindulge on guacamole or my kid interrupts my workout.
The difference between where I am now, versus where I was from 18-21 is that my bad days don't send me back to square 1. This is now a maintainable lifestyle that I can continue if my good days vastly outnumber the not so good days.
I don't like the term "after" picture because a healthy lifestyle doesn't just "end."
2 week challenges or 6 week fixes "end" but what I promote is continuous.
The picture on the right is my current state. God-willing, I'll have more babies in the future and my body will change many times again.
But I don't for one second doubt that I will continue to live a full, active, healthy life through all the stages to come.
Why? Because I know what I need to do. I have the tools, I have the formula, I have the motivation, and I have the support.
THIS is why I'm so passionate about health and fitness.
Because I've experienced life as a person consumed with wanting to change and battling feelings of self-hatred, and I've experienced life as a person comfortable with my body and thankful for what it can do.
I believe everyone should be able to experience the latter.
As always, message me here, on Facebook, or on Instagram if you have any questions or comments, I'd love to hear from you!