The Connection Runners + workout

It's a Marathon, Not a Sprint

I am not for everyone.

I understand that my lifestyle may seem extreme, "in your face," or too much.

And that's ok.

My lifestyle fits me, and I merely want to share the way I live with you, with hope that someone, somewhere, someday may be inspired to try a new recipe, or to hit the gym more often, try a new food, etc.

I haven't always been the happy "flexitarian" I am today. I grew up as an active kid, I did gymnastics, played competitive soccer, and ran track. My metabolism was lightning fast, and I ate whatever I wanted (I'm talking mac and cheese, cheese puffs, donuts, etc.). I was also raised to eat my vegetables, to exercise responsibly, and to always pay attention to protein.

Me in high school

I began experimenting with "healthy eating" towards the tail end of college. I maintained my athletic status throughout college- going to the gym regularly, running around campus, and attending exercise classes with friends (pilates, hip hop dance, spinning). My food intake the first 2 years was questionable- I ate a fair amount of salads but I also fell prey to the college student diet- vending machines, pizza, large cafeteria portions. Needless to say, I did gain some weight.

Mind you, I was never overweight/obese- but I wasn't at a happy weight for me. I remember calling my dad in a panic my sophomore year, unhappy with what the gym scale had read. I asked him for a scale and he obliged. From that point on I made an unofficial vow to be mindful of the foods I put into my body, and continue regular exercise. I began experimenting with vegetarianism during my senior year of college, but was sidetracked a few times, especially when I met this guy:

Stone cold meat-eater. I was so in love and eager to please I ate whatever, whenever. I reached my boiling point a few months into our relationship, and confessed:

"I'm actually a really healthy person. I usually exercise every day and eat fruits and vegetables. And ::gulp:: tofu"

I thought he was going to run the other way, but he accepted me. I don't know why I was ashamed about my healthy status, but I was. I'm glad I came clean- or I think I'd be pretty unhappy (and have a few more lbs on me!)

Over the course of the past 8+ years- there have been times I restricted. I counted calories. I deprived myself of my favorite foods. And there have been times I ate everything in sight and was racked with guilt.

The road to my current lifestyle didn't really take off until I moved to Pittsburgh and started medical school. I was in a different environment, temptations of college living disappeared, and I started to feel like a real adult.

Engagement photo

(Not to say I don't act like a kid sometimes ;-))

And things just started falling into place. Health blogs helped, a lot. I loved reading about other people's lives and knowing it's ok to be one with healthy foods and exercise.

I, of course, am still human. I eat pizza, splurge on M&Ms, and skip a workout day here and there. So what. I live 95% healthy, eat 95% healthy, and am working every day towards happiness.

And now I want to share my experiences with you. One block of tofu, serving of granola, and Zumba class at a time.

Side note: Tonight at Zumba class a lady came up to me afterward and told me I was her inspiration. Nicest compliment I've gotten in awhile. 3 months of twisting, salsa-ing, and jumping--I'm more coordinated, sassy, and a decent dancer. WIN!

Anyway, that's my piece. Hope you're enjoying the blog so far, let me know if there's anything else you'd like me to talk about!

Have a great night (and stay warm!)


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It's a Marathon, Not a Sprint + workout