Switching Over to a Healthy Lifestyle: The Reality of How My Life Changed

Getting Started:IMG_20130223_095557

It has been exactly a year since I started my switch over to living a more healthy lifestyle. I have always kind of ate healthy and kind of worked out but I was never committed to giving my full efforts in the gym and sacrificing foods from my diet.

I used to think that I was being “healthy” by eating Special K cereal and snacking on 100 calorie packs all of the time. Now that I realize what I was putting into my body, it sickens me that many people think they are healthy by eating all of that processed crap. Marketing and lack of education are steering many people in the wrong direction. It took reconnecting and moving in with an old friend, Maren, for me to learn what healthy living really was. She helped educate me on reading labels and switching to a more natural diet. I owe a lot to her for getting me on the right track. Since then I have really seen what a change in your diet can do for your body. Many times we think it is all about the efforts we put in at the gym but its also about what we do at the kitchen table.

My workout routines have become more intense. I started with Body Pump and Spin and have since moved on to Tabata, GRIT, CX, and have even started teaching some spin classes! I have learned that teaching classes brings you to a whole new level of fitness! I feel that I work harder through my own classes than I do as a participant. I love it!!

The Effects on My Body:

When I decided to commit to healthy lifestyle I knew that it wasn’t something that was going to happen over night so I gradually started cutting out the bad foods and adding in the good. It is amazing how you become more in tune with your body once you start fueling it properly.

My body has gone through some crazy changes this past year! I’m not talking toning up and looking better but some internal changes as well. Which really proved to me that changing my lifestyle was really having an effect.

The first thing that I noticed was more energy, so much energy that I would often only be able to sleep for three to four hours at a time. I would go to bed and wake up around 1:00 a.m. every night. It took me awhile to get back to sleep and this was a frustrating time but my body eventually adjusted and I was able to start sleeping through the night after about five weeks. I am very against taking any kind of sleep aide so I made myself get through it. I did however take Melatonin at night to help me relax, this seemed to help a little bit.

After I was finally able to sleep at night my body went through yet another change, I lacked a menstrual cycle for not one, not two, not three, but four months!! Seems ideal right?? I actually didn’t mind it being gone and I knew that upping your fitness levels can have this effect on the female body. I really didn’t worry too much about it until it got up to three months then I started to feel a bit concerned. I did some research and decided to wait it out awhile and after four months I was back to normal.

It may be weird but I love the fact that I experienced these two things. I feel that it is my body telling me that it notices the change of lifestyle.

The Negative Effects of Switching to a Healthy Lifestyle:

Negative effects?? Yes, not caused by me but by the people around me. It has been a year and my parents and family members still don’t understand my reasoning for not joining them on fried chicken night or making them grill me a chicken breast instead of steak. They look at me funny when I order something they have never heard of off of a menu at a restaurant. Don’t get me wrong I indulge every once in awhile, actually probably more than I should but my parents were both raised on farms. They eat bread and butter with every meal and have seconds at dinner time, no food goes to waste mentality. I love them dearly but eating with them is still a struggle for me.20130609_193736

Going out to eat for any occasion is also difficult. I love the atmosphere but I always get anxiety about what I am going to order and what are the other people at the table are thinking when I order. I sound picky because I don’t want mayo, sour cream, or cheese. It is so strange to me that someone can order a burger and fries and no one bats an eye but if you order a salad it is a BIG DEAL!

Enough Negativity time for POSITIVE!

There are SOOO many things I love about my life now that I am eating better and have become a gym “freak”!!

* First of all LOVE grocery shopping. Picking out healthy food is so much fun to me. Fruits and vegetables are the best because you don’t have to worry about an ingredient list!! Iherb.com has also become my favorite website and place to order groceries and supplements from 🙂


* I am so much more confident with myself!

* This year I have ran my first 5k, 10k, and mud run20130704_082357

* I started teaching spin class

* I have met so many amazing people at the gym who I share common goals with. We have become a workout family.

* I have become more educated about healthy living and love continuing to educate myself on it. I read about it ALL the time.

* I got to attend Blend Retreat 2013 in Park City, Utah and meet some amazing women who shared a common interest with me!!

* I love cooking healthy food, especially snacks!


* I take a lot more pictures

* I started a blog!!

I have really learned that this is all one big process. It takes time for your body to adjust both inside and out. I love waking up each day and seeing improvements in myself from week to week or month to month. One of the most important things is to not take this all TOO SERIOUSLY. You still need to have nights out with the girls, cheat days, ice cream, days off from the gym, and of course chocolate. Don’t be too hard on yourself, don’t try to rush to see results, and compliment yourself daily. 🙂

Working with High Ability Students

For the past two weeks I was given an incredible opportunity to teach at a camp for high ability learners. Students are selected by their school teachers, fill out an application, and if they meet all the requirements are allowed in. This year we had 140 students and 20 that remained on a waiting list. The best thing about this camp is that students are surrounded by others who share their passion for learning, these students WANT to be there. Teaching is a huge passion of mine, as I am a middle school math and science teacher, but this camp is a breath of fresh air for me. I don’t have to worry about the students who would rather be doing anything else but learning, but instead get to embrace those who are constantly looking to gain knowledge in subject areas of their choice.

This year I decided to share my love of science, fitness, and girly pampering by offering classes related to these areas. It is amazing how much students get out of your classes when they know it is something you are passionate about. This year circus was our SEE Camp theme so all of my class titles related to what you would see in a circus.

My first period class was “Clowning Around with Science.” During this class I allowed students to mix household chemicals to create explosions, moon dough, bouncy balls, and just plain get messy!! (Thankfully it was nice outside so we didn’t have a ton of cleanup!!)


(Here the students are mixing cornstarch and shaving cream to create moon dough, they loved it!!)


(We used milk, dish soap, and food coloring to create a swirling of colors, loved this one! The colors keep swirling for about ten minutes.)

My next two classes were titled “Training Like an Acrobat.” I had a lot of kids interested in this class so I was able to offer to sessions of it! I loved the fact that  students willingly signed up for a fitness class. This was my favorite class to teach because I secretly want to be a P.E. teacher. I used this time to workout with the kids so I would get my workout in and got to wear gym clothes all day, who wouldn’t want that job!!


(My favorite day was the day when my students found out what tabata was. I came up with a kid friendly routine and the kids loved it! So cool to introduce them to new ways of staying fit.)

My last class of the  day was called “No Boys Allowed.” During this class we did hair, make-up, manicures, pedicures, and even experimented with some face painting. The girls absolutely loved it! In this class we got pampered and pampered each other every day. Definitely something a girl could get used to!

We taught the girls how to french braid, do updos, we taught them how to do nail art, and most importantly we let me experience the beauty of being a girl.

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(The girls after giving each other manicures)



(I loved doing the girls’ hair, such a fun class!!)


After completing my second year of SEE Camp, I have to admit that it is a pretty amazing place to be. As a teacher you really get the opportunity to see how many ways a student can be gifted. We all have different strengths and this camp really gives students an opportunity to shine! For some it is about meeting new friends, others come to camp to be challenged, and many are there because of their commitment to never stop learning about the world around them.

Camp just go over and I am already excited for next year. Our theme for 2014 is Super Heroes Around the World. I can not wait to start putting together my classes!





After talking with a friend today, we decided that healthy living is not all about what you eat and what you do to stay in shape. It is also about being healthy mentally and surrounding yourself with positiveness (not a word I know haha), but seriously a positive atmosphere promotes healthy living.

I think it is important to take the time to make the people around you feel special. That’s why I have declared Thursdays, “Thoughtful Thursday.”

Today’s thoughtfulness is all about compliments. We never know the true power behind a compliment and how it can make someone feel. We can all find at least one thing  that we like about a certain person, and all you have to do to give a compliment is use your words, no cost or risk involved!! Too often we think to ourselves, “man, I really like her hair today” or “I love her new shoes” but how often do we really express our feelings without moving onto the next thought?

So, to make sure that I do my part in being thoughtful everyday, I make certain that I give at least five compliments. Once that is mastered then you can always move the number up! Now go make someone’s day brighter! 🙂


Blend 2013

I think it is only fair that I post this group of girls as my first blog post. They are the reason that I decided to go through with starting a blog, after considering it for the last few months. … Continue reading