I grew up in a family that ate healthy meals, my parents were great about making sure of that. But when I went off to college and was left to my own devices, I sort of lost the plot. I wasn’t making fantastic food choices, I was making convenient ones.
I was routinely downing high-caffeine energy drinks and pulling all-nighters to study. And, like many other undergrads, enjoyed more than my share of alcohol-related fun. Several years of leading that lifestyle took their toll.
I developed disordered eating habits, insomnia, depression, and a few not-so-delightful skin conditions. I was routinely exhausted and my stomach felt like it was in a constant state of turmoil. Months after graduating, I found myself at my heaviest weight ever. I was unhappy, unhealthy, unmotivated, and just generally un-myself.
Food got me into that unhappy place and food got me out of it.
Hauling over my kitchen habits helped me eat my way back to a happier self. I saw first-hand how little mindful intentional choices can really add up to massive changes. I had always heard that but never really believed it until I did it. And (somewhat infuriatingly) that simple, tried and true advice worked.
It is definitely a process. It can be (and certainly was for me) a challenging and patience-trying experience. To be honest, my journey is still happening even as I type this. There is no final finish line when it comes to health, there is always some new personal goal to strive towards. But I have found that if you want it and you go after it with all you’ve got, your healthy + happy life is absolutely within your reach.
Learning about what was actually IN my food and how to better prepare it at home was a huge turning point for me. I found that healthy choices did not mean I had to resign myself to eating plate after plate of boring, bland, basic, or tasteless food. In the wise words of Elizabeth Lemon, “I can do it! I can have it all!”.
FYF exists to hopefully reach out and reassure someone out there that you can do it too. You can eat your way back to healthy, one bite at a time.
I used my kitchen as the battleground to wage a war against processed foods, preservatives, chemicals, hormones, additives, and more to heal myself from the inside out. I took the path that many have taken before me and incorporated more whole foods, made more homemade meals, and indulged in smarter portion sizes. I slowly got down to a healthier weight and gained enough confidence to explore that mysterious land I had heard terrifying stories about, the place they called “the gym”. Now, I actually sort of like to lift heavy things up and then put them back down again. I am by no means an extraordinary athlete but it makes me feel good to take steps towards living a long and happy life.
My family and friends are pretty fantastic people. Like unbeatable. As fun and laid back as they are supportive. You know who you are. Yes, YOU. They all already surpass my “squad goals”(that being said, Taylor Swift and her squad are welcome to join mine any day…we would sort of totally love that). I strive for my best personal health + fitness because I want to be around as long as possible to soak up every last bit of their awesomeness. I never would have dreamed of being who or where I am today without their constant presence and unending encouragement. I am proud to be a constant work-in-progress and beyond thankful to keep the company that I do.