Getting Back to Healthy

12 Sep

So, let’s start a few years ago. Several years ago. I’ve always been in sports. Ever since first grade I have been playing sports. I’ve dabbled in basketball, soccer, volleyball, and tennis, but my first love and sports-dom passion: SOFTBALL. Oooh, just thinking about hitting a line drive up the middle, sliding in the grass for a sweet catch, or throwing a deliciously wicked curve ball gets my heart pumping! I started playing softball when was I was a little ‘un in 1st grade and continued all the way till sophomore year of college.

So I definitely stayed active and truly, I’ve never been overweight or in close terms with it. I’ve always been fit and never really have had to worry about the food I ate. And I must tell you I LOVE FOOD. So even despite the common tween and teen (who am I kidding, I still have some of that) self-consciousness about self-image, I could never have anything to do with self-deprivation as far as food goes. NO WAY.

In college, we had grueling workouts. In our off-season training, we had dreaded ‘6 a.m.s’. This entailed 1.5-2 hour sessions of cardio, weight lifting, sprints, lunges, etc. All of which = barf! Especially after coming back from Thanksgiving break. During our regular season we had 4 hour practices, every night, always with conditioning at the end of practice to put the evil cherry on top. It was tough and I was always ridiculously hungry afterward. As freshmen staying in the dorms, my fellow comrades and I all went crazy in the cafeteria, going back for seconds, thirds, whatever.

The freshmen of 2004

Favorite meal during this time? Thick crust meat-lovers pizza and ice cream after, if the funds were available. We were athletes and we were burning serious calories at every practice, so we definitely needed them, but I probably wasn’t making the healthiest choices… sometimes. My point here is that I was able to eat a lot of calories and not put on extra fat.

After I was done with softball, I kept eating like I was playing softball. It was habit. I lost a ton of muscle mass but I still didn’t seem to be gaining weight. I was actually losing. Being busy with school and working a p.t. job, I don’t think I was exactly aware of what was happening.

I went to school for nutrition so I was well educated on how to eat healthy and the benefits of regular exercise but I was so worn out from the softball workouts I had no desire for exercise and with school, plus a part time job… as many of you can relate… it was stressful.

And I can’t say that I’ve ever really been a ‘bad’ eater, but will admit there were several occasions where I would go on eating 3/4 of a bag of pita chips in one sitting without even being aware. I stopped exercising, maybe 3 times a month at best.

Me and Hannah (my maid of honor) senior year

I have stayed within a few pounds, give or take, to my weight while I was playing softball, and I am in no way “over-weight” but I know that I haven’t been taking care of myself as I as well as I should. I have no muscle mass remaining; my ‘pitcher’s’ arms are gone and I have noticed clothes aren’t fitting me as well as they used to.

On top of my steadily declining ‘health’, ever since I can remember, I’ve had stomach issues (bloating, heartburn, cramping from ‘gas bubbles’). I’ve tried to pinpoint it to specific foods, but I could never make any correlations. I’ve gone to the doctor several times, only to be given pills and no answers. So I figured I was doomed to always have horrible stomach issues.

Just this year I got the wonderful opportunity to start working with an awesome doctor who did a lot more investigating on my issues. The doc suggested that I do a detox and some supplements. Let me tell you, I felt great on the detox! All my issues seemed to almost completely disappear, I lost a little weight and my energy was good. It was a 3 week detox and then 3-4 more weeks of reintroducing things that were taken out while on the detox.

Fresh out of college, 2 yrs ago

A few months went by and then all of a sudden something wicked happened. I was working two part-time jobs and my hours were definitely more than 40 a week. I don’t know if it was the two jobs, the stress, changes at my jobs, but something put me over the edge. I was sleeping horrible and having anxiety attacks. I had no energy and definitely couldn’t make myself exercise. I began taking additional supplements to alleviate my problems with sleeping. And again, they helped a lot. It took a while for them to get working entirely, but eventually I was sleeping much better (it also helped that I was able to quit one of my jobs…yessss!).

It’s been a few months since then. I thought my first detox had identified one food sensitivity that I have (dairy). I did not think that I had others, but currently my stomach issues are back. And in a wicked way. So I find myself right smack in the middle of another detox! I am determined to find any other food sensitivities that I have. Currently I am on my the 19th day of another  21- day detox. It’s been going ok… not exactly the same results I saw the first time, but I do feel that I have made some improvements. I’m feeling lighter and getting more energy back throughout the day. I plan to do another post describing this detox in much more detail and how it can help you, so stay tuned for that!

On top of my detox, I have been committed to getting back to exercising. Out of all the hard work we had to do for softball, I did develop a deep love for running. It’s just the ‘getting up before work to make myself do it’ part that makes it not so desirable at 4:45 in the am. But I’ve been doing well. My initial goal was to do something (run, hike or stationary bike) at least 3 times a week. So far I’ve lost a pound, which is not a lot, but I’m not too concerned about weight. It’s more that I want my muscle mass back and I want my clothes to fit me better again.

So here I am, the nutritionist, telling you that I struggle with food choices and not exercising too. I’m not a machine. I don’t always make the best choices… (veggies or brownie for a snack….hmmmmm). I’ve got a serious sweet tooth. I have the same conversations in my head at 5:00 o’clock in the morning too,

“Should I wake up? Oh but my bed is so perfect right now! I went to bed too late… so I should sleep more. It’s only 30 minutes more of sleep! Just get up!”

Anyways, you are welcome to join me on your own journey back to health and if you have any questions, please ask! I’ll be putting up another post soon on the detox plan that I follow so hopefully some of you will give it a go yourself.

Are you struggling to get motivated to take care of yourself? If you had a turning point to get your butt in motion, what was it, and what is keeping you going?

I’d say the thing that is keeping me going is that I KNOW I feel better when I eat a specific way, and every time I make a decision that is healthier for me, I get a shot of happiness and sense of accomplishment. It’s getting kind of addictive, really.



7 Responses to “Getting Back to Healthy”

  1. Sarah September 12, 2010 at 8:28 pm #

    When you wrote…”we would go back for seconds, thirds, whatever” I laughed out loud! We totally did! So gross! We also went to Noodles like 3 times a week…remember that?

    • Kaleigh September 13, 2010 at 7:36 pm #

      Ha! Oh goodness of course I remember! I suddenly have a serious craving for mac and cheese….yummmmm…….

  2. Ed September 13, 2010 at 10:53 am #

    I know exactly how you feel! The past two or three weeks I’ve been eating out a lot which has only resulted in me being broke and my body being very upset with me. this week, I’m cleaning out the fridge, stocking up on healthy foods, and getting back to the kitchen. Because whatever I make is better than I can get at a restaurant anyway. Plus, you get that sense of accomplishment that you made something!

  3. Sarah Cleland September 16, 2010 at 8:16 am #

    Love the picture. It def brought back memories. I love reading your blog, makes me laugh! Glad everything is going well!

    • Kaleigh September 18, 2010 at 2:42 pm #

      Hey! Thanks for reading our blog and I’m glad it can give you some chuckles! How are things going with you? It feels like it has been forever!


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