My Fitness Story

Left: 21% body fat, 124 lbs, May 20, 2016. Right: 16% body fat, 124 lbs, July 14, 2017.

Every story has to start somewhere, right? Well, sadly mine starts in a very dark, (boring), and miserable place.

I think my food issues started in the seventh grade when a bunch of gal pals had a gal fight and cut me out of the group for not taking sides- not that I’m blaming them (at all!), that incident caused me to turn to food to cope. I felt like I couldn’t control anything and really needed something to manipulate, so I chose food.

This was a disaster.

I used to start out each day hating myself. I used to exercise fueled by this unrelenting hate and I would stare loathingly at myself in the mirror, hoping to burn the fat away through the pain in my stare.

I admit this proudly: I had a unhealthy relationship with food, an unhealthy view of my body, and an unhealthy definition of what exercise and dieting meant for the physiological and mental aspects of the human body. I couldn’t look at myself in the mirror without grimacing- I wasn’t eating well, I thought that weight gain was the enemy, and I thought skinny was the same thing as fit. I’d panic if I gained a fraction of a pound and I let myself repeat lies that the mirror never showed me. I refused the information pushed my way, choosing to ignore it rather than easily stop being so ignorant.

My self esteem was at a fraction of even anything. It was pretty much non existent. I’d make jokes, poke fun at myself, but never want to change.

And then, one day, I did.

The weight room became my second home. I made huge gains, but I never got my diet right. I’m saying, what I ate was basically empty carbs and sugar combined with never making it above 600 calories in a day. This lifestyle left me crabby, down, and sad for no reason. I was always anxious, tired, and couldn’t concentrate on anything. I’d wake up and barely have the energy to roll out of bed let alone stay out of bed- I thought I was struggling with depression or chronic fatigue when in reality I was starving my body and my brain didn’t realize what my body was screaming at it.

Have you ever plateaued for such a long period of time that every workout is discouraging and pushing yourself isn’t getting anywhere? Well, welcome to the last three months of my life. Three months of regression in the gym and a little bit of pick-me-up cardio in addition to the Pinterest exercises (which Jake calls pointless and stupid) I could find.

Here’s the thing: my oh so fitness-y boyfriend who loves reading articles and staying in the know about fitness, health, also loves being strong and muscular (not that I’m biased or anything) and well-informed about nutrition. I, on the other hand, never got into even going to the gym until 1.5 years ago, coincidentally at the same time that I started getting serious with Jake (hmm, would you look at that).

Let me just say- I thought eating protein meant a little nibble of a measly chicken breast every other day.

Boy, was I wrong.

And then I met Michael Matthews. Okay, okay. Not face-to-face, but it might as well have been so. His book Bigger, Leaner, Stronger was sitting dusty on the bookshelf and the bright yellow cover caught my eye as I could literally hear Jake’s voice telling me to read it countless times- and so I did. I picked it up, flipped it open, and let’s just say I was completely sucked in. I read the whole thing in 9 hours (I’m an outrageously slow reader and I took doodle-notes too) and decided to change my life because of it.

So, here I am now. I’m 21 months into progressive resistance weight lifting, but I’m only just starting my adventure into eating right and eating well. 

I am a work-in-progress when it comes to nutrition and fitness, but that’s okay (ah, the joy! It only goes up, my dear). I’ve come to have a burning passion for women to see how they are beautiful and to find the flaws in their cognitive processing that allows in self-hatred and wall-hitting self speech.

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