I mentioned a guest post last week....and here it is! This is Becky's story!
Challenges and Changes: My Story
Hello Crunches for Cupcakes readers! My name is Becky. I’m not a blogger (yet!), but I am thrilled that my cousin Melissa has asked me to guest post on Crunches for Cupcakes. Each and every one of us has a story. We all come from somewhere. One of the most exciting things about reading and writing blogs is sharing our stories. Today I am here to share mine.
I am 25 years old. In my jam-packed 25 years, I created a reputation for myself. I was the BIG talker, world-class shopper, sarcastic jokester, bubbly kindergarten teacher, and academic. I had carved out my niche. I was also known for being “big-boned, curvy, well-endowed.” I thought my life would continue on that path forever.
I changed my mind. In December 2009, my best friend, Meg flew in from Washington DC. She looked great! She took up spinning, running, yoga…and it showed! For 11 years, I shared clothes and gourmet meals with Meg, but that quickly ended. I watched her healthy habits and saw the impressive results. Around the same time, I went to the doctor. She was concerned. She noticed that for the past couple of years my blood pressure was a little high, too high…should she put me on blood pressure medication? I begged to have a chance to make some changes. So many of the important people in my life were living healthy lifestyles and I was empowered to do the same.
In January 2009, I joined “the gym” in my hometown. Along with all of those who had made weight-loss resolutions for the New Year, I threw myself into exercise. I am an over-achiever by nature, so I made a plan. Go to the gym six days/week. Try as many classes as possible. Never quit! I stuck to that plan. In the first week, I tried Pilates, spinning, power yoga, gentle yoga, running on the treadmill. It was hard, but I felt rejuvenated, invigorated, and finally, happy with myself.
Exercising was a blast, my new hobby! My friends at the gym became my second family. While I LOVED exercising and would jump feet-first into any new workout, I knew it was not the only aspect of my life that needed tweaking. I needed to change my diet, too. That part came very slowly. I started out by counting and cutting calories. I saw results and I was pleased, but I was never satisfied. I craved boneless buffalo wings and ice cream. I realized that if I wanted to change my lifestyle, “diet” food just wouldn’t cut it. I needed to do something more.
As I said, I’m a kindergarten teacher, so I have the luxury of summers off. In June, I vowed to teach myself to cook. I started researching healthy recipes, reading blogs, grocery shopping, and educating myself about nutrition. With all of the information I collected, I started to eat “real” foods. I have tried countless recipes and discover so many new foods and flavors. After the intensity of spin and running, there is nothing more therapeutic for me than coming into the kitchen and getting creative with food. I am now satisfied!
I love my life! I started this journey at 165 lbs. with borderline high blood pressure. I lost a total of 45 lbs, but I also let go of a lot of baggage. I don’t live according my reputation. I set the bar for myself and I accomplished things I never imagined possible. I feel a million times better about myself and where I am headed. With the support of my family, I completed my first 5K at Bryant University on October 4, 2009. I finished in 29:36, placing 28/81 women in the race. I just registered for 5K #2….and I can’t wait!
Going back to the beginning, we all have a story. This is only mine. Over time, I made small changes in my life and they have amounted to something big. It is important to remember that it takes many small steps to reach a goal. Everyone needs to find their own balance and remember to have fun every step of the way! If you aren’t satisfied then it’s probably time for a change!
I'd like to add one more chapter to Becky's story. On Sunday October 11, Becky ran in her 2nd 5K race. She beat her previous PR by 2 minutes and 30 seconds! Wow!
(Becky, I'm so proud of you! You're amazing, inside and out! Can't wait to sign up for more races together. Possibly even the Disney Half Marathon in 2011?!?!)