I grew up a very picky child. Aren’t most kids though? Food didn’t excite me. By senior year of high school I began getting curious about how food/nutrition and the body worked. Why were people saying carbohydrates were bad? What was a carbohydrate? I was on a mission to get my answers!
Freshman year of college brought on an extra 10 pounds to my small 5’4” frame. I had done a lot of late night eating, dorm hall cafeteria food, and occasional weekend partying. I had never had a weight issue until the age of 19. I was technically still at a healthy weight, but I wasn’t happy.
That summer I returned home and began exercising for 60-90 minutes at least 5 days a week. I incorporated cardio and weights into my regime. I changed my eating style by watching portion sizes and limiting dining out.
I returned to college that fall trying to keep up with my exercise routine. I tried eating healthier which included Special K bars and juice (what was I thinking?!). My weekend activities kept me from completely keeping the weight off that I lost over the summer.
I slowly began running my sophomore year which slowly increased as my love of it grew. I also began to increase my fruit, vegetable, and oat consumption while I decreased by alcohol and bagel consumption. Late night eating also came to a halt since I began eating a filling breakfast of oats.
And then on day it clicked that I should be eating real food. My excited for food grew as I studied my major, nutrition and dietetics, and began dating a Sicilian boy who by heritage was a foodie.
Then my running became front stage. At a challenging part of my life my senior year of college, I turned to running as therapy. I signed up for a half marathon and the training kept me sane.
I now keep my weight stable through “clean” eating and being active. I have found a balance of the two. I never deprive myself or feel guilty when I indulge in a meal or skip or scheduled workout. My diet and exercise is still slowly evolving. This is a journey after all.
I encourage you to find your happy balance!