Quick background on me, I am 25 years old, I am type one diabetic, and I have had body image issues since I was a teenager. When I first decided to sign up for the Body Challenge, I was almost back to my heaviest weight. I had previously lost 15 pounds when paying an arm and a leg for a personal trainer at a gym with lots of macho manly men. In addition, I was working around his schedule more than my own. He went back to school, and I was unofficially dropped from his schedule, while still paying for the service. I gained most of my weight back, and could barely look in the mirror because I was so frustrated with myself. Most of my clothes were a size 14/16, making it difficult to shop in non plus size departments. I would purposefully try to hide any time someone wanted to take a picture, because I hated the way I looked in photos.
I saw a girl from my high school had joined Fitness Asylum and lost a ton of weight. Had I not previously known her, I would have thought her photos were fake! I was so inspired, in a moment of desperation, I decided to break my contract with my trainer, and sign up for the Winter Body Challenge.
Small confession, I didn’t exactly look at the details when I signed up, (I just wanted to be skinny like that girl!) so it was quite the surprise when during the kick off they started talking mostly about diet. I was convinced that I already ate mega healthy, so I was skeptical that this would help me. I was ready to kick butt at boot camp! Sure enough, during my first week on the diet, I was not a happy soul, and rather than kicking butt, I almost threw up after my first boot camp. It was quite the wake up call that I needed to focus on getting myself healthy. I figured if I lost 10 pounds from this, I would be happy, and hopefully would gain better control of my blood sugars.
My favorite things about this have been how supportive everyone at FA is, and how there literally is not a single person judging you during boot camp. We always end with cheers and high fives! I learned I actually was pretty addicted to sugar, and have learned to drink coffee without it being drowned in caramel. I learned I am pretty terrible at remembering to journal my food (sorry!) but I eat better when I do. I also learned how the media seems to condition us into wanting insanely unhealthy foods! About a month into the diet, I was in shock scrolling through social media at how many posts and ads I saw for calorie loaded foods like cheeseburgers drowned in nacho cheese, milkshakes covered in cookies and candy, and triple-decker deep fried sandwiches. The best thing for me though, was I no longer saw those things as appealing. I wasn’t disgusted, but I wasn’t jumping up saying I needed to eat these. That was when I knew I wasn’t just following a program, I was finally getting healthy. My body now prefers the clean food I have been giving it, and my mind is no longer demanding the grease and sugar.
After completing the challenge, I have lost 27 pounds to date. When I started, I would take 24 units of my long lasting insulin every night. I have since dropped my nightly dose down to 15 units, and probably can do even less soon. It’s still weird for me to take pictures, but I am amazed that I actually like how they come out now! For the first time since I was 17, I can now fit into size 10 jeans. Everyone says I am so much more confident and energetic now. I feel healthier, and have learned to love myself again. I am still in disbelief at how much I have changed for the better in the past 12 weeks. I will be forever grateful to FA for taking my health and confidence to levels I never even dreamed possible.