So you may be wondering…
How the heck did I go from being a lazy, junk-food obsessed girl, to a girl who has created a health & fitness E-Book? Let’s get real for a sec.
At the age of 21 I had absolutely no idea what it meant to live a healthy lifestyle. I also wasn’t interested in living one. Health? Pass the Mac & Cheese. Fitness? I’ll lay on the couch, thanks for asking.
I would eat “healthy” during the week (salads, because leaves are the only way to be healthy of course!!!) so that I could justify eating whatever I wanted on the weekends. And when I say whatever I wanted, I’m not exaggerating. I’m talking endless amounts of pasta, cheese, post-bar junk food runs & 3 am pizza deliveries (Toppers Stix I still love you). My normal fitness routine was no fitness routine. On a good week, I’d work out 3 times a week. On an average week, I wouldn’t work out at all. I was the definition of lazy & I had no problem with it.
About 6 months after I graduated college, I started experiencing strange side and back pains. After going to the doctor, I learned that those pains were actually a signal that my gallbladder was not functioning properly, and I may need to get surgery to remove it. One of the biggest causes of this? Eating fried, processed foods that are overloaded with unhealthy fats. You should’ve seen my WTF? face. How did this make any sense for me? Shouldn’t I be overweight if my diet was such an issue?
At this point in my life, I didn’t look “fit” or in shape AT all, but I still didn’t think I looked unhealthy. Genetically, I have a lean, non-muscular build and I don’t gain fat or muscle as easily as others might. I know, I know, some of you are rolling your eyes. But honestly, this was the reason I ended up in the doctor’s office that day. I had created suuuuper unhealthy habits for myself because I thought I could get away with it. I thought if I was only eating unhealthy on the weekends I should be fine, right? No girlfriend. No. 3 days of binging on junk out of a 7 day week meant over 40% of my diet consisted of me eating absolute trash.
That doctor’s appointment was a wake up call for me. While I didn’t change my eating habits overnight (it’s a process, and that’s okay), it was the trigger for me to start researching what the word “healthy” actually means.
While doing all this research, I started testing out recipes so I could find healthy meals that I actually like, and began figuring out what it meant for me to live a balanced life. Because pizza & salads need to coexist in my life in order for it to be a happy one, ya feel me?
Then, around the age of 23 my struggles with anxiety hit an all time high. I had been dealing with anxiety for a couple years before that, but it suddenly started to feel like it was controlling my life. I was anxious from the time I woke up in the morning to the time I went to bed. Waking up in the middle of the night drenched in sweat became normal for me. I eventually realized that the only time of the day I didn’t feel anxious was when I was at the gym. When I was working out I was in the zone- not focused on whatever was causing me stress outside of the gym. So I decided to prioritize fitness for the first time in my life. Eventually, going to the gym became a habit, and when the physical results started to show I just became even more motivated. After that, I started to LOVE having fitness as a part of my life. Not only did it help clear my mind, but I felt so proud of myself after a tough workout. I started testing out different workout guides, started weight training for the first time ever, and gradually started to create my own workouts when I learned what I liked best.
I spent about a year and a half researching, learning, and experimenting with all things health & fitness (and I still am!). During that year I lost body fat, gained muscle mass, stopped having gallbladder related pains, and stopped having severe anxiety. Plus so. much. more.
My life was forever changed. And I wanted to share what I learned with everyone.
Enter… my little sister Emily. Em is currently in college, and like most college students, she wasn’t eating right & she wasn’t exercising (no judgement if this is currently you, just telling her story people!). We started chatting a lot about how much it was affecting her, but the thing that stuck out to me the most was the lack of confidence she had in herself. As her big sister, nothing made me want to help her more.
I decided to put together “Emily’s Healthy Lifestyle Guide”, including a workout plan, nutrition guide & recipe ideas. I told her I would give it to her if she promised me one thing… to stick with it for 8 weeks. She was super hesitant at first. 8 weeks? That sounded like forever & a day. What if she couldn’t find the motivation? What if it she didn’t have enough time? What if she quit? I’m sure you already know the end of this story… she didn’t quit. She stuck with the 8 weeks, and she’s continued to stick with it since then. It’s now been 7 months since those 8 weeks ended & she’s lost 30 POUNDS because of her lifestyle change. What?! On our birthday weekend this summer, she came to my apartment looking amazing. Yes, she had a new hot bod, but more importantly, she had self-confidence again. The kind of confidence people would kill to have. I couldn’t believe she was the same girl.
But here’s the best part… and the part that made me realize I wanted to share this healthy lifestyle guide with everyone.
She told me that the year before, she had purchased a new skirt that she loved, but never ended up wearing it. She didn’t like the way she looked or felt in it at the time. Well… SHE WAS WEARING THE SKIRT! And it looked killer on her. Obviously.
So to sum up the question of why I started getting into health & fitness, it’s because my mental and physical health were the definition of a hot mess. If you are struggling with either of those things, I’m giving you a big hug! Or maybe you’re doing okay in both of those areas, but you’re feeling lost, discouraged, unmotivated, confused or all of the above about how to live a healthy, yet balanced lifestyle. Girl same. I was so confused and overwhelmed. You’re not alone. Everyone’s journey is different, and wherever you are in yours is okay. But if you’re ready to make a change and ready to feel like the most beautiful version of yourself, then you can count on me to help you get there. You deserve it.