My Fitness Story: I can safely say that for a good chunk of my life (let’s say 21 years) I have never ever EVER been considered an athletic person of any sort. Except for a spout of volleyball in middle school/freshman year of high school and musical theater, I was not very active. In high school I was diagnosed with hypothyroidism/Hashimoto’s disease and I can safely say I used that as my crutch. I had a very defeated attitude and it felt like although I had been trying to diet since elementary school (ya, you read that correctly), I just was always going to be fat.
This was my mentality until I got accepted into UW-Madison’s geological engineering program (I’m a nerd) and decided that if I’m going to a new school, I’m going to be a new me! At the same time, my mother (recently divorced at the time) had joined the local gym, lost weight, and gotten herself healthy. She generously offered to pay for half of my membership in order to have a new workout buddy (she’s amazing). With a lot of slow progress, I worked my way from strictly using the elliptical to running my first mile.
As time went on, I increased my mileage, pumped some iron, and was more confident in my athleticism. In what seemed like a few months, I had gone from a little over 200lbs to 160 lbs. During my college career I competed in a 5K mud run, a few 5K races, and my first half marathon! By the time I graduated college, I was in the BEST SHAPE OF MY LIFE. I had a flexible schedule that allowed plenty of time to train, even though my classes were challenging.
Then after graduation, I joined the working force and it all went downhill. As an environmental scientist, I am oftentimes doing field work and traveling. With traveling and long hours comes the convenient (often times junk) food. Within two years of my big-girl job, I had gained ALL of my weight back. After some time of depression and a defeated attitude, an old high school friend of mine shared something called the “Whole30” on her blog.
After researching and buying the books, I decided to do it! I was so tired of counting calories and never really felt comfortable with Frankenstein/diet foods, that it seemed like the perfect program for me to kick some nasty eating habits to the curb! I started at the end of April 2016 and after three rounds of the program I am 30 lbs lighter, down a couple skirt sizes, and am training for my second half marathon! My plan is to continue eating a paleo diet (I found I had a sensitivity to a few foods I was eating regularly) and use the Whole30 program as a restart as I see fit. My times so far during my half marathon training are ALREADY surpassing my first time! I’d like to think it has a lot to do with fueling my body correctly and listening to what it needs.