Hey babes! If you have been following along on my journey then you have probably caught on to the fact that I am very passionate about health, wellness, and fitness! It is one of the main reasons why I started this blog and my Instagram, as well as I just thoroughly enjoy sharing this journey with all of ya’ll!
One of the most commonly asked questions I receive is “what made you want to become so healthy?”. While I would love to spill my whole entire life story to better explain myself to people, I don’t have the time or energy to do so, so I typically respond with “it makes me feel good”. And that’s the truth! Just in a very short and simple answer, lol.
I have been meaning to write out this post for quite some time and now I finally feel like it is time! Not only have I had my blog for almost one year now, but I feel like it is time to start sharing a little more of the “why” behind why I do what I do. So, today I am sharing with you all my very own health and fitness journey!
I have shared little blurbs of it here and there on my Instagram and even on my website, but I never sat down and really ever told my story. My plan is to make it as condensed as possible while still getting my point across. And depending on how this post goes, I may have to put it into two parts to make it easier for you to follow along. Besides, as much as I could, I don’t want to type a whole novel into this one blog post, lol.
Before I begin, I would just like to say a huge thank you to everyone who reads and supports my blog! It truly means the world to me and without all of you I wouldn’t be able to get to do any of it! I am so excited to share my story with ya’ll and I hope to inspire you as well as give you a better understanding as to why I am so passionate about what I do.
My Health and Fitness Journey: Part 1
So, where to even begin?! I am going to take it allll the way back to high school. To put it bluntly, I was never the “it” girl. I was never the girl with the “hottest” body, or the girl that was envied by others. I was friends with a lot of girls who seemed to be born with the “perfect body” and could literally eat anything and not gain a single pound, let alone feel guilty for eating like shit. I used to wish I was like that. (Crazy, looking back, right?!) I didn’t have a bad high school experience and I wasn’t fat by any means, but, like most people, looking back there are some things I would definitely change. On the flip side of that though, I wouldn’t be the same person I am today and that I will forever be grateful for. But, the one thing I didn’t give myself enough credit for was my natural athletic ability. I wasn’t a star soccer player or anything like that, but I typically enjoyed sports/fitness and having endurance came naturally for me. Aside from that, my family ate relatively healthy, but nothing too out of the ordinary. There was always food on the table and in our fridge/pantry. But as I got older, the more I noticed myself wanting to change my body and the way I ate. I wanted to be more fit, skinnier, more likeable, I wanted abs…the list goes on.
I was on the cheerleading squad and track team throughout high school to scratch that athletic itch. To be honest though, I wish I would have concentrated on track more and ditched cheerleading, but again hind sight is 20/20, right? About my junior year of high school is when I really started wanting to change my body. I decided to go “vegetarian”. And I put quotes around the word because it was the furthest thing from a vegetarian. I still ate fish, although I didn’t even ever eat it, lol. I distinctly remember this one memory from high school when I was in my weight lifting class and we were covering the nutrition unit. We had to calculate our caloric intake (I forget what for but that doesn’t really matter). I remember keeping a food diary and, on average, I was consuming 950-1,000 calories a day. Just let that sink in for a minute. I was so stuck on labeling myself as a vegetarian that I didn’t properly educate myself on how to fuel my body without having to consume meat that I just ended up essentially starving myself. The kicker is, I didn’t see a problem with this nor did anyone else around me notice I was doing this to myself. I can’t even remember how long this went on because my only memory after that was when my junior prom rolled around. The day of I ate meat for the first time in months and my body got so sick from it!
Fast forward to my senior year of high school, somewhere between my junior prom and senior year I started eating meat again but started eating “healthier”. (I am putting quotes around a lot of these words because I am using them very lightly in the sense of I wasn’t any of these things lol). Basically, what I thought was nutritious and good for my body was the complete opposite. At this point I thought I was doing good and although I wasn’t happy with my body I focused more on trying to fit in than anything else.
It wasn’t until I graduated high school (June 2012-August 2013), and everyone went to college that I really started to dive into the health and fitness world. I took a semester off and didn’t go to college right away, whereas all of my friends went away for school. I felt like I was alone and had nothing but myself and fitness. So that is what I turned to. I started using the Nike Training app and did 20-minute workouts in my bedroom. I became obsessed with these workouts and didn’t skip a day, and if I did, I would freak out. Developing this unhealthy relationship with feeling the need to workout turned into becoming obsessed with what foods I was eating. So, on top of working out every single day, I started eating very specific foods. When I say specific I mean I was a creature of habit and ate almost the same thing every day, or every other day. No joke. And when I didn’t eat what I planned out in my mind, I would cry in my room and consider myself a failure. Sounds dramatic, but it’s the truth!
Continuing these unhealthy habits, my body dysmorphia was at an all-time high and my only goal was to be the “skinny girl. From working out so much and eating only certain foods, I dropped almost 20 pounds from what I weighed in high school (I weighed around 128lbs in high school and got down to 110-115). And can you believe that made me happy? Sickening, I know. I would think to myself, “I’m finally skinny, I am THAT girl now.” And I loved receiving those compliments too, even when someone told me I was too skinny. Then, I developed what’s commonly known as “binge eating disorder”. While I don’t think my experience was nearly as bad as other’s, I know I had a problem. I would eat super light and clean all day and be starving at night, so I would binge on anything I could get my hands on. Cheez-its, goldfish, ice cream, etc. And then work it off in the morning. Soon the night time binge eating turned into weekend binge eating where Saturday and Sunday I would eat whatever I wanted and as much as I could. This continued on for a while and I stayed at this weight for probably close to a year. Looking back, I can obviously see how unhealthy I was but in that moment I felt good because I was skinny.
LEFT: Senior year 2012 not really caring about my body but hating it at the same time. RIGHT: 2013/2014 unhealthy obsession with becoming skinny/working out/clean eating (I thought I was “fat” in the right photo…).
I am going to take a pause in the story here because there’s a lot more to be shared and like I said, I don’t want this to be anymore of novel than it already is lol. This is the first time I am publicly sharing my story as well as the first time I am putting it on paper (or in words, lol). It’s crazy what memories are popping into my head as I write this and it reminds me of how I got to where I am today and why I am passionate about what I do.
I hope you all enjoyed the first part of my health and fitness journey. I look forward to sharing the second half of it with you very, very soon!
Share your thoughts with me! Comment below or head to my Instagram page (@iamdevonjade)!