I know I’ve been talking about changing and becoming healthier on this blog, but what the heck does that even mean? I wanted to share with you a little bit about myself and how I got to where I am today. Brace yourself, there are a lot of words coming your way.
First, if you’ve been around here since the beginning you know that I was/am a dancer. I started dancing in 7th grade and it has been my way of life ever since. By time I was in 9th grade I was dancing at least 4 to 6 days a week. As you can imagine, I was in pretty decent shape. I hit my growth spurt (hitting about 5′ 3”) by the 5th grade and had a very petite frame. Once I started dancing I thinned out more. At the time of high school graduation I topped out at 100 pounds with 0 tits and ass. For being so little I had terrible eating habits. TERRIBLE. I ate fast food every day. Being so on the go left no time for packing food for dinner or anything like that. Sonic, Chikfila, and Subway were my BFF’s.
High school Katie. Eighteen years old with the body of a 12 year old. Only nowadays they probably have bigger boobs.
In college I finally got on track with my eating AND got some boobs. Hell yeah! I feared the freshman 15. I refused to let it get me. The fact that I was in college as a dance major with more than just fast food options really helped me avoid gaining weight. I was able to trim out some fluff and really tone up. Training at the professional level all day every day will do that though. I was able to have a much more healthy diet (with some deserved treats maybe more often than not), learn how to cook for myself, and have a pretty damn good time.
Woo! Finally got boobs and may or may not spent time pretending to be Ke$ha.
I went to college a fifth year and graduated with a second degree (public relations) in May 2012. To be completely honest, graduating was rough. I had lived with my best friend for the past 4 years and had to move out on my own with no real job. That would be how I landed in my last living situation. The house was super cheap and it was with a friend I trusted. Turns out super cheap and friend I trusted was some bull shit. The house was terrible and the now ex-friend did some pretty sleazy things.
Moving into that house was the beginning of the decline in my healthy lifestyle. Having a kitchen that was constantly dirty with barely working appliances made cooking for yourself difficult and not exactly appealing. I began to constantly eat out. I found a job teaching dance that was wonderful, but quickly became my only exercise. I went from hardcore dancing 20 hours a week to teaching 4 year old 20 hours a week. When I would be at the house I wouldn’t really want to be anywhere other than my room and wouldn’t want to make the effort to exercise. Eating out became a way to avoid cooking and being around the house. It’s pretty easy to see how quickly a fit and healthy body can go downhill with that kind of lifestyle.
The whole time I knew how unhealthy I was living and the effects it was having on my body. Fortunately cold weather and its required clothing helped me avoid seeing the obvious. But when weather got warm I began to realize just how much my body had changed. Where there was once muscle was now fat and then some. Let’s be real, you can only have so many “fat days” before you realize you’re actually getting fat. All in all I had put on close to 10 pounds of extra weight. I know 10 pounds isn’t too bad, but when you take in to account the amount of muscle I lost and that muscle ways more than fat…it’s scary to think how much fat I actually gained.
It was when I finally moved out of the terrible house that I really began to take control of my lifestyle. Figuring out my bad habits and why they were habits were the first step to getting healthy. You can’t get healthy until you know why you’re unhealthy.
My Bad Habits And What I’m Doing About Them
Bad habit #1: Eating only fast food. Now, that’s a pretty obvious statement. Everyone knows fast food is bad for you. If you have any doubts, watch Super Size Me and then come talk to me. The worst thing about fast food, in my opinion, is the fact it’s addictive and your taste buds adjust to the food. That’s right. Healthy delicious food will not taste delicious when you switch from a fast food diet to real food.
How I’m going to fix it: Keep my kitchen stocked with healthy options. The main reason my diet switched to mostly fast food is because I didn’t have a kitchen. Now that I do have a kitchen that really does work (yay for a working dishwasher and a whole fridge to myself!) I can be 100% in control of what comes and goes in it. It also helps that I live across from a farm that sells fresh produce. My kitchen has gone from no food to healthy foods like this.
Bad habit #2: I never exercised. I tried to tell myself teaching dance classes “counted” as exercise, but the thing is, teaching children dance classes just doesn’t cut it. I did get a gym membership but after Carl started living somewhere else, the gym was no longer a convenient drive. I was living on such a tight budget I couldn’t afford the gas to drive out there. I ended up canceling my membership.
How I’m going to fix it: Stop being lazy and start exercising. Here’s the thing, I really do enjoy exercising, so following through on this one hasn’t been too difficult. I’m even a certified personal trainer. (It’s actually what I will be doing in Greenville in addition to teaching dance.) Moving has also been a great help in motivating me. I live in a great apartment complex that has lots of green around it. I’m able to take Gatsby on long walks adding up to 1-2 miles a day. It’s been great for him and me. I’ve also started reading a lot more health and fitness blogs. I have a good knowledge of home workouts but reading blogs has given me inspiration and motivation to try new things.
Bad habit #3: I dwelled on the number on the scale and what I saw in the mirror…and how I looked in my clothes. Seeing that number on the scale was devastating, and for some reason I had to see it at least once a week. I also dwelled on the way I looked in the mirror and how my clothes fit. It doesn’t take much explaining to understand how much damage that does to a person’s self esteem.
How I’m going to fix it: Stop all of that. I’ve made a deal with myself to not weight myself until the end of the month. I took before pictures, made note of my weight, and then hid all of those things. It’s much more important to focus on the things that will give you results than if you’re seeing them each day. Your weight fluctuates throughout the day, there’s no point in weighing yourself everyday because it’s only going to discourage you. The real things you want to think about each day is how much better eating healthy and exercising makes you feel, not if the number on the scale or image in the mirror reflects those things. Feeling healthier is most important, the scale and the mirror will eventually reflect those feelings, they just take time.
I’m glad I took the time to really think about what was causing my bad habits. It has given me a great start to living healthier. Since starting I’ve found some other great ways to help stay on track that I will be sharing with you all soon.
What bad habits have been keeping you from living a healthier life?
How are you going to beat them?