Until a few years ago, I considered my health something I might think about if I ever got the time. But I never had any time! As a busy high school English teacher, I spent long days and nights perfecting my lessons, grading student work, and trying to be the most effective teacher I could possibly be. With keeping up a household and juggling all the other parts of my life, exercise was something I occasionally thought about but virtually never did. Breakfast was going through a drive-thru on my way to school every morning. Lunch was a meal I rarely had time to eat, and dinner was whatever was closest at hand when I finally was able to get home from work. I was stressed out and exhausted. But that’s just life, right?
I got a wake-up call to the importance of health and diet when, amidst my busy schedule, my mom called me to let me know that my father was finally getting his long-awaited kidney transplant. I immediately flew home and helped my father through every step of the process.
This involved monitoring everything he ate and drank and making sure he avoided foods that would overload his kidneys (and there were a lot of things to avoid). I had never seen my father so helpless. This man who I had always looked at for strength and support suddenly needed help doing virtually everything. Thank goodness, he did slowly gain his strength back. But I was forever changed by the experience. The message was loud and clear: without your health, you have nothing.
From that time on, I started to take an honest look at my own life and realized that if I didn’t change my ways, I would soon be heading towards my own health crisis.
The first thing I did was cut down on sugar. It wasn’t easy. At all. I had some very deeply ingrained habits that I had to work on. I had grown up in a “tea and dessert after dinner” type of family. And meals just felt incomplete without the sweet ending. And cutting down on chocolate? That was definitely a stretch. However, I kept at my goal of cutting down on foods with added sugars. Yes, I had the inevitable slip-ups, but every time I messed up, I was able to refocus and get back and track. It definitely wasn’t easy–but skipping the added sugar (and going for things like fresh berries instead) eventually started to feel natural. I still eat dessert from time to time, but it’s now a once-in-a-while indulgence versus an everyday necessity.
The energy I got from just this one change was enormous—especially when I paired it with consistent exercise (which was also a struggle at first but something that has become such a habit that I now actively miss it when I don’t get in a run!). Living a healthier lifestyle has led to me feeling so good that I cannot believe I went for so long just getting through each day any way I could.
This new focus on health has led me to become certified as a health coach and personal trainer. My desire to help others—which I formerly expressed by being an English teacher—is now given outlet by helping others reach their health goals and feeling great with each change that they make!
Why did I join My Body Tutor?
I know that change is hard—no matter how badly you want that change to happen. That is why it is so important to have someone to help you along the way, someone to guide and encourage you. I feel so grateful to be able to provide this type of support to my clients. Daily feedback and communication allows me to know exactly what is happening with my clients on a day-by-day basis. It is amazing what powerful and lasting changes we can make one meal at a time, one day at a time.