If there is one thing I have learned through my certification at the Institute for Integrative Nutrition, it is to be your true, authentic self. Well, the truth is that is not how I used to live my life. This post may not be an easy one to stomach, nor is it filled with uplifting, nutrition and fitness advice. However, this is my REAL story.
My story is one that I used to be humiliated by. It has taken me years to find the courage to talk about why I have become so passionate about living an authentic, happy, healthy, and balanced life. It takes courage to tell your story. It is difficult to not worry about what others will think or how your peers will judge you, but getting your story out into the world has felt like a major therapy session!
My goal of telling my story is to let people know that YOU ARE NOT ALONE! We have all faced demons in our life. We have all been in the middle of a storm that seems to pummel you into oblivion with no hope of return. And then one day, a life event can make you jump out of your own body, look down at yourself and say, “What are you doing?!”
My Turning Point
I can vividly recall one of the lowest points in my life. During this time, I was cycling between a daily ritual of anorexia and bulimia. My days consisted of deciding what I was going to eat (or not eat) and how many calories I needed to burn if necessary. It was actually no life at all. The moment that completely changed my life was when I was running up the stairs to go take a shower. My heart started pounding faster than I can express. I collapsed and somehow was able to dial 911 thinking I was having a heart attack. As I was talking with the 911 operator my heartbeat began to normalize, so I told her I didn’t think I needed any assistance.
Sitting on the steps in disbelief, I grasped just how serious of a situation this was. I have no idea what actually went wrong with my heart that day, but it was enough to open my eyes and wake me up. Right then and there, I decided to change my life. And so began my official health and wellness transformation.
Life Before My Turning Point
Let’s be honest, we all know what my life looked like. It was one of hopelessness and fear. It was not pretty. Happiness became a distant thought. My eating behaviors reeked havoc on my body. Externally, I actually seemed okay and was able to hide from most people how I was feeling internally. Yet, in my own sad, closed off bubble, food and exercise had totally and completely consumed every hour of every day. I completely lost sight of who I was. I closed myself off from every person and thing that I loved.
The first leap I took was seeking support from my now husband. I had tried for nearly 5 years to conquer my disordered eating on my own, but I realized I could no longer do it alone. If I hadn’t taken a leap of faith to talk about my struggles, I can honestly say I would be in an extremely lonely and bad place right now.
Day by day, I gradually began having clarity. I was no longer living in a mental fog. Through constant support and daily affirmation, I began to see the light at the end of the tunnel. I started going to church for the first time in years which helped me to grow spiritually. Slowly, food no longer consumed every waking moment of my life. My relationships improved, my digestion improved, I had more energy, I gained more confidence, And I started getting back my passion for things I used to love – playing sports, going out with friends, hiking, and even eating!
I want to make it clear that this positive change did not happen overnight. This has been an ongoing battle that I fight every single day. Years of support from loved ones is why I am able to stand here today, healthy, happy, and eternally grateful.
Another important point to consider is that there will bumps and obstacles along the way to your transformation. To this day, I face a variety of challenges. Will I ever go backwards? Am I faithfully leading by example if people see me eating a juicy burger and fries? If I don’t live an active lifestyle everyday, will my followers still trust me? Thoughts like these can plague the mind, but you MUST power through. We are only human after all. We are not perfect and that is okay.
When faced with a challenge, rise to it! When I feel I am not good enough, I remember all I have already accomplished. Sometimes, you just need to take a deep breath and let gratitude overcome you. Realize what a beautiful life you already have and keep moving forward.
My life has taken a 180 since my initial turning point. Today I stand before you, strong, confident, healthy and much more balanced. I have flaws just like anyone else and I fully embrace them.
Today, I am officially a Certified Personal Trainer and Certified Health Coach. I am overwhelmed with gratitude, joy and emotion that I am privileged to live out my passion. I am fortunate to be able to coach and help others who are struggling with their own health concerns. I firmly believe I was faced with my own challenges to in turn be able to mentor others and help them to achieve their most pressing health goals.
The beauty of telling your own story is that you never know whose life you are positively impacting. Just know that it is never too late to turn your life around. I want you to be the healthiest version of yourself. The time to be your true authentic self is now!
If you have been longing to tell your own story or need some fitness and/or healthy living advice, please feel free to reach out to me by email or by visiting the contact page. You can also schedule your free health consultation, here.