“I cried the moment this happened because I finally realized that this is what healthy feels like”
My journey to finding optimal health was not a straightforward path or an easy adventure. Body confidence is not something that comes naturally for me and I will admit that I am still working on it. When I was in high school, I was overweight and envied my two sisters who were thin and were both cheerleaders. After I graduated high school, I knew I needed to do something about my health. I started using the elliptical machine at home every day over the summer and lost about ten pounds on my own. Then during my second year of college I started weight-training three times a week with a personal trainer and learned how to eat healthfully to fuel my body. Over the two years that I was training at this gym, I lost almost 40 pounds and kept it off until a back injury caused from training kept me from working out for almost a year. I put most of the weight back on during this setback.
I started rehabilitation training for my back at another gym where I learned more about eating healthfully. Over a couple of years, I lost almost 40 pounds. At one point I got too thin but did not realize that there was a problem. The nutritionist and a couple of coaches at the gym recognized that I was too skinny and that I was obsessing over what I was eating. I also lost my period for about nine months, wasn’t sleeping well, and had very little energy. They reduced my training load and told me straightforward that I needed to gain weight as fast as possible. Hearing this felt like the end of the world and it took some time to process but I was eventually on board. Eating a ton of food was difficult, but I eventually gained about 10 pounds and got my period back. I cried the moment this happened because I finally realized that this is what healthy feels like. Losing your period is no joke and should not be taken lightly. It might be a convenience but it is not healthy and can lead to serious health problems down the road such. I kept the weight on for a couple of years but then dropped to a low weight again about a year ago. I lost my period again for about six months and realized that this is not healthy and that I needed to do something about it. It took a second time of being in an unhealthy state for me to accept that being “skinny” comes with consequences. I am happy with a few extra pounds because my energy is better, I’m building muscle, and I have a better self-image. My body feels strong and healthy.