As a long distance runner a majority of my life, worrying about what I ate or how much I ate was truly never something that ever crossed my mind. I had a fast metabolism and kept a pretty petite stature, which allowed me to essentially eat any and everything I was craving at that specific moment because of the amount of calories I would burn each day running. Between the long distance runs, hill workouts, track workouts, swim workouts, lifts, races, 2x days, etc… I NEEDED food. Don’t get me wrong, I definitely ate healthy, but carbs are my weakness and any chance I could get at eating a bagel, pizza or bowl of pasta, I took.
Fast forward to 2017, I officially graduated from college and was so physically burnt out, I remember crossing the finish line of my last race and saying “I am never running again”. I stood by that motto, but instead of picking up another type of activity, I chose to do nothing for an entire year. Not one bone in my body wanted to workout. What I didn’t take into account was because I was no where near burning the amount of calories I had been essentially my entire life, I should have focused more on the foods I was consuming and how they would affect me. Between 2017-2019, I ended up gaining a whopping 31 pounds. For someone who is only 5’3, it definitely was NOT healthy, physically or mentally. It wasn’t until I had a routine doctor’s appointment where we had a serious conversation about the toll it could take on me and my overall health that gave me that push I needed to get back to who I was before.
I got engaged in August of 2019 and knew I had to get serious about this because my goal was to lose those pounds by my May 1, 2021 wedding. I didn’t really have any interest in running anymore so how the heck was I supposed to do that?! In September of 2019, I not only started a fitness journey to lose the weight, I started an overall new lifestyle, incorporating working out and eating healthy foods while still being able to indulge in sweets from time to time.
I began OrangeTheory in September of 2019 to March of 2020 (covid 😦 ). I LOVED it so much! It gave me the ability to try different workouts I never did before. Between rowing, lifting, running or walking, I loved the burn I felt afterwards and how it mentally made me feel! I focused on eliminating unnecessary sugars and instead turning towards healthy fats, greens, veggies and protein. I really limited my carb intake and instead found other delicious alternatives in place of when I would normally grab a piece of bread to accompany a meal. In those 6 months, I lost 21 pounds.
When COVID hit, and OrangeTheory closed in March of 2020, I had to focus on different things I could do around the house that would allow me to still continue losing the weight I had hoped I could before my wedding. Between the OrangeTheory at home workouts, the Peloton app, a stationary bike, online strength videos, focusing on what I ate without completely limiting myself to the occasional bagel, by July 2020 I was down another 6 pounds.
We are less than 4 months out from the wedding day and officially down 31 pounds. Not only do I feel my best, but the fact that I was able to completely change my lifestyle and continue on this healthy pattern has been lifechanging for me. It’s not about the number on the scale, but rather how healthy and strong I feel and what it has done for my overall emotional and physical health 🙂