Thursday, August 7, 2014

That Thing We Call Health

Okay, so this is not my normal beauty post, this is a bit more personal. I'm not giving
advice or telling anyone how they should be. I am just using this as a way to talk about my health and fitness journey and if it can help anyone else, well, that's great too!  

So here is my story from the start until now...

When I was younger I was very sick and I never wanted to eat, this was the beginning of my weird relationship with food. When I was 4 I was above average height and only weighed 32 lbs. Then I started to get better and I didn't feel nauseous all of the time and I could better taste food. I started to like to eat like everyone else and I began to get up to a healthly weight and everyone was so excited that I didn't look like if I got the flu I wouldn't make it. Everybody was so happy I was eating I kind of just kept eating and got a little chubby. I was still young enough that I wasn't acutely aware of it, that is until a boy in my Sunday school class told me I had fat arms (looking back at pictures I really didn't though) and that was the beginning of feeling insecure in my own skin.

Fast forward to age 11:
I had started to thin out as I was playing tennis all the time and I had gotten taller and I had been in a musical that past summer which had me moving around a lot, but then my dad (a chef) got a job transfer to the Las Vegas area and I moved from the only friends and family I had ever known. I had a bit of a culture shock. I was home schooled and all my friends had been too. My mom and her friends ran our home school group in the San Francisco/Bay Area, we used to go to museums, zoos, aquariums, concertos, the ballet, etc...suddenly I was in this place where non of the people I was meeting liked the same things I did and I didn't fit in at all and the city I was now in had little to offer me in comparison to what I had grown up with up to that point. My mom asked if I wanted to attend traditional school and I basically told her that it was repressive and I didn't want to spend my time in that environment. (You can see why I didn't fit well, using words like repressive at 11.) Any way, I became very lonely and at the same time my dad's job wasn't paying him for a few months until the construction of the restaurant was done (shady!) and that meant at the same time that I was very lonely and using food as a blanket to cover my feelings money was tight and that meant cheaper, unhealthy foods. I started to gain weight and become even more unhappy.

My whole family disliked Las Vegas and wanted to just run away and find a new place to call home. We moved around a bunch and ended right back in Vegas since my dad could find work here. We did one last move when I was 14 up to a small town north of Las Vegas. I gained more weight and hated to look at myself. 

I decided enough was enough. I didn't want to feel like I didn't fit in and couldn't do things my fellow teens could. I still didn't have a lot of friends, but I had one and we're still friends today. I started eating less and running...that's right running! I didn't know who I was anymore. I felt strong and I was an athlete, something I hadn't been in years. I was back and I felt great!

17: People don't talk about this part of weight loss a lot, but I started to feel insecure, because I was losing weight, but gaining a lot of attention I never had before. I was thinner and not just guys were noticing. People at church were always telling me how great I looked and that I was so pretty. This is a strange feeling, on the one hand people now are embracing you and telling you how good you look and on the other it feels like you were not enough before. I now know that when you feel more confident you are more open to the world which makes you more approachable and that has a bit to do with it as well.

18: I was working out a lot and feeling great and confident at this point and we then moved back into the city and I was on my way to a job interview and I got hit from behind while at a stop light and the guy was going 45MPH, which at a stop is like getting hit at 90MPH and I suffered a minor traumatic brain injury which made me not be able to drive for a while and I had trouble remembering things and what the words for things were. I still sometimes have trouble every so often. My spine was not in the best shape either and I had to do physical therapy 3 day a week to sort out the damage. I was not aloud to work out other that walking. I would walk 2 miles a day when I felt up to it and I started eating 6 small meals a day, one meal every 3 hours to keep my metabolism running hot. 

19: By the middle of this year I could resume my workout schedule and I did! By almost 20 I was about 25 lbs from the place I wanted to be and I was supper fit. I was running about 20-25 miles a week and I was also weight training 3 days a week. I couldn't not work out, I was so glad to have my body back to where I could do whatever I wanted workout wise. It became addictive and that was also unhealthy in a way, I wasn't overly thin because I upped my caloric intake to match my workouts, I just didn't often give my body rest days which is not good for you.

20: I got pneumonia. It was like the hits just kept coming. It lasted 3 months and I was on 2 rounds of steroids for my lungs that also make you hungry and gain weight. I was eager for this to end and when it did I was told I was not aloud to work out for 3 months after in case of relapse. I didn't work out and 2 months later I still relapsed and that was another month down and 3 afterwards. Almost a year had slipped by and weight had slipped back on. I began boxing with a trainer to try and refocus and that helped my for a time, until he left that gym and I got a different trainer who was not the best for me as he just didn't push me competitively. (I'm sooooo competitive, so that is the best way to push me.)

21-Present: It has been a struggle this whole time I have lost weight since then, but I have been stuck. I am proud that I haven't put all of my weight back on, as that is easy to do, but it is time to get back down to business! I am going to do a weekly(ish) post called "This Thing We Call Health" where I talk about what I did that week and how it made me feel. I am not going to talk about numbers, because I don't like that sort of focus. I put muscle on very easily and that means progress doesn't always show up on scales as quickly, but inches do. Clothes are the best gauge in my opinion. I think it is good to keep a food journal and I like to put how what I ate made me feel. I find that if I eat something crap and then I write down that it made me feel poorly or run down I remember that and pick something smarter the next time. I think this will be a good way to keep me focused. As strange as it may sound I feel a responsibility to everyone who reads these post to produce good content, it's the least I can do since you have either taken the time to read this and/or you follow my blog. 

That was a lot to read and if you stuck it out thank you! I hope this is a helpful thing for 
myself and for others as well. If you have anything that motivates you or music that gets you pumped to work out please let me know about them in the comments, that would be very much appreciated! You can my blog here and on Bloglovin'. I am also on TwitterInstagram and Tumblr.
xoxo, Amanda 

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