I am often asked “Why did you start running?” “How did you lose all that weight?”; “What is a running coach and a health coach?” In this post you will learn about my journey to a healthier and happier me. My journey started with healing from the inside out.
I have struggled with weight, self-confidence, and self-esteem starting from the time I was in Junior High. I felt ugly and not comfortable in my own skin. I felt like a failure because I couldn’t keep the weight off long term. I saw my childhood doctor and he helped me lose the weight by structuring my eating style to a healthier one(counting calories; carbs, etc); I kept weight off all through high school. Then I got married and in my mid-twenties I began to struggle with anxiety. I began to take medication for the anxiety issues which at times helped but I gained weight, once again feeling like a failure. I didn’t think I was a good wife, a good Christian, didn’t have enough faith, wasn’t disciplined enough, etc. The negative thoughts and emotions inside of me at times were extremely challenging to deal with. Some days I would come home from work and just want to cry and bury myself under a blanket. I didn’t want to get up and go to work, clean the house, do any fun activities—why? I fail at everything—wasn’t completing tasks/goals not just related to health (such as getting my pilot’s license). When I lost the weight, I had more energy, my mood was better and so was my anxiety but slowly the weight would come back on and the cycle would start all over again. Through it all my husband was and still is my biggest supporter.
Once again, I reached out to my doctors and medication would be prescribed. This helped temporarily but the weight always came back on no matter how healthy I ate. I would eat a low-fat diet which would work for a time. I would walk – I didn’t run at the time. While most of the time I enjoyed walking with friends, sometimes I just didn’t feel like doing it. I finally had enough in the late 2000s—God please show me the way –and asked my doctor to take me off the anxiety medications safely. I began to research and asking questions about a more holistic, natural approach to health. My former chiropractor (he since has retired) was the first person to really help me. He discovered my gut was very unhappy, and said I had leaky gut syndrome. I had no idea what this was but I soon learned. I also learned by working on healing my gut, my anxiety and psoriasis problems would eventually be a thing a of the past. I cut out bread and pastas. I began to take a digestive supplements along with a few other supplements. I saw my chiropractor every two weeks at first, then as my body began to heal, I saw him once a month. Over a long period of time, my body learned to heal itself. My energy was better, I lost some weight, and my anxiety was not an issue.
Soon I went back to college to finish my Bachelor’s degree and guess what, yes, my weight gain began again. I didn’t have time to eat healthy or exercise as much as I wanted to; however, this time around was not as bad as before. I graduated college and I made up my mind to get back on track. Once again, I asked God to help me and my former chiropractor assisted me on the journey back to health. A grade school friend inspired me to start running. At first I was hesitant but soon visited a local running store. I was scared and almost didn’t get out of the truck. I thought the employees would laugh at me. After all I was overweight and out of shape. God had a plan and it started here. My husband practically had to drag me into the store and I am glad he did because my life changed forever that day, I just didn’t know it at the time. I joined the beginner running group and soon found myself enjoying running. My husband even began to run with me. I lost weight again following the no bread/pasta/gluten diet. I felt great. My energy was great, my mind was clear, my faith was strong –for all of this is because God made it possible. I obtained my running coach certification from the Lydiard Foundation and I coach the very group that got me running.
I was working a full-time job, a part-time job and coaching…yes this was a lot and I would pay for it later. I have ran several long distance races including a full marathon in 2015. Not long after the marathon in March 2016 I began to notice a change in my health. My stress levels were lower as I had changed jobs in 2015 which was huge for my health so why was I so tired? Why was running three miles so hard? Why were my hormones, mood swings off the charts? I needed naps during the day. I would go to bed earlier and earlier however, I still struggled to get up in the morning. I didn’t want go anywhere, nor did I have the energy. I was irritable all of the time. None of these things were the person I knew. Something was wrong. I went to my medical doctor and couldn’t find anything wrong. I ate a bland diet hoping this would help my stomach pain I would have. I didn’t know if the pain was from diet or hormonal or both. I was trying anything and everything with very little success. A friend recommended a naturopath doctor and in August 2016 I finally began to discover what was going on with body. My estrogen levels were too high, progesterone levels too low, and my cortisol levels were too low—a condition called adrenal fatigue. I kept praying and God showed me once again as He always did, there is help. I changed my eating to include more protein, at this time I wasn’t eating very much meat, I simply didn’t crave it. I began taking a B vitamin and a supplement for my adrenals. I had to adjust my physical fitness routine. I could lift weights and run but I had decrease the amount and the intensity—WHAT? I can’t do that I am a running coach—but I did and still coached. My body responded well and in six months I could tell a difference. I soon found a chiropractor whose practice was similar to my former, retired chiropractor. What a difference this chiropractor and this naturopath made in my health. Thank you Jesus for giving me these wonderful people to help me. I adjusted my eating to more of a paleo/keto style and increased my fat intake. My body responded well and turned into a fat burning machine! My mind became clearer, my faith became stronger, my energy was improving. I had a much better quality of life, oh and I lost weight—that is the bonus.
Through this journey God gave me what I needed when I needed it. God brought me to it and He brought me through it. He has used me in my darkest hours and in my best of times to inspire others. My story I hope will show people anything is possible. The journey continues and God is at the forefront, followed by husband, family and friends.