My story started when I fell in love with running because of how it made me feel
and it gave my mind a rest from the constant thoughts rolling through my head with work, my Master’s degree and studying for the CPA exam. After running my first half marathon and feeling awful I KNEW I could do better. With a Master’s in Accounting, I’m driven by numbers and figuring out ways to improve numbers (or my time and pace in this case).
Through my own journey, I learned how much nutrition and strength training impacted running, YET at the time (2018), I rarely heard or saw anyone talking about the importance of them. I only heard “run more miles” or “run faster.” So I dove into the topics and learned as much as I could while also sharing with others. I started helping others with what I call “ALL THE THINGS” – strength training, nutrition, sleep, rest, life stress, mindset, mobility, etc. – all the things that impact running outside of a run. With the success that I personally had, as well as the success I was seeing from those who I shared the information, I started my coaching business to continue to spread the word and help more runners.
In the beginning, I was focused on “ALL THE THINGS” outside of a training plan because that’s what I saw was missing – run coaches focused on the structured training plans and runs but not a lot helped with the other training principles (ALL THE THINGS). However, not all my clients had run coaches and were asking me for recommendations. I had an interest in creating training plans, so why not get certified?
I got my first run coach certification from Road Runners of America (RRCA) and am now able to help more runners by offering a holistic approach to running and training. I’m now also a UESCA Certified Run Coach, a Certified Running Gait Analyst, an IIN Certified Holistic Run Coach, and an 8020 Endurance Certified Coach. I build training plans for their goals and races (Although not all my clients are training for races. Some are new to running, some have no desire to race anymore, and some are focused on other things in life while using running to benefit their mental health. Every runner has a different focus with different goals.) – yet I still talk about “ALL THE THINGS,” I don’t just talk about the training plan – which days they have to run and how far. I make sure they are strength training and fueling their bodies properly. I help them understand how their stress level is playing into how they feel on their runs. I talk through different situations in life that may be trickling into their running/training so that we can address the root cause. I make sure they are prioritizing rest and recovery and working on their mindset. It all makes a difference. And this is where I’m at today. I absolutely love getting to know my clients and helping them understand the parallels between running and life – any lesson that pops up during training can be applied to life.
NOW LET’S TALK ABOUT FOOD
Food is fuel! Let me say it again. FOOD IS FUEL!!!! When you learn to listen to your body and give it what it needs, incredible things happen.
I’ve always been very active but I knew nothing about nutrition or portion control. I ate lean protein, fruits, veggies, healthy carbs, etc. – no fast food or much for packaged foods – but I had a huge sweet tooth for chocolate and homemade desserts. I didn’t know how to fuel my body properly or how much of each food group I should be eating.
On May 30, 2016, I decided to turn that around. I joined an accountability group and mastered portion control, losing 20 pounds in a matter of a few months. I was eating a clean diet but I wasn’t feeding my body enough. I was eating 1,200-1,400 calories a day – that isn’t enough for the active lifestyle that I live. I was constantly hungry and I stopped seeing results. I wanted to tone and I wasn’t getting any stronger or faster. Something had to change.
Fast forward to the end of 2017 when I started hearing about timed nutrition from my favorite trainer. She stressed that food is fuel – you have to eat enough to see results, otherwise your body holds onto the food that you eat and the weight that you have because your body doesn’t know when it will get fed next. I started listening to my body and on January 15, 2018, I went all in again and I started increasing the amount of food I ate – I needed to eat more. I continued to eat clean in proper portions with my containers, but I also slowly increased my intake based on my goals and activity level. My body started responding immediately because I was fueling my body for performance! I lost 20 more pounds, built lean muscle and completely transformed my body and mind!
I now see food as fuel. I eat to RUN. I EAT to PERFORM. I EAT TO LIVE! That’s what my nutrition program taught me. It taught me HOW to fuel my body properly for my individual goals and activity level. It helped me overcome food and sugar addiction and emotional eating. It made me dig deep within to find my WHY, and it changed my life!
It is my OBLIGATION to share how this opportunity has changed my life! How saying YES to myself and taking my health seriously changed my body, my mind, my running game, my relationship with food, my career path, my happiness, and my LIFE.
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