Why did you want to lose weight?
I have always been a runner. I am also a heroin addict. I have been running since I was a child. It has always come first, but when I started using heroin, my running routine suffered. I spent more time getting high than hitting the pavement. I met my husband in rehab. He was an athlete as well and when we left rehab we were running 10 miles most days a week. Then we both relapsed and during the next five years I ran very infrequently.
"In the beginning, my weight loss was an unsought reward. But once I started losing weight, I loved the way I looked."
Adam overdosed on December 16, 2019. Two days after he passed, I felt a calling to run. I am an atheist, but running is spiritual for me. As I said it’s meditative. I needed something to help me work through what was happening. At that point, I decided to get healthy mentally and physically. I went to rehab and got clean. I learned how to deal with my devastating loss. After I left rehab, I continued to run every day. It has replaced my heroin use. I still have bad days and miss Adam every day, but I deal with it differently. Running is a huge part of this.
What did you want to accomplish on your journey?
I wanted to achieve peace and I started running again because I wanted to be healthy. Running helps me achieve peace; it calms my brain. In the beginning, my weight loss was an unsought reward. But once I started losing weight, I loved the way I looked. At the time, I was overweight and when I started losing weight, I looked better in my clothing, which I loved. I was less self-conscious. I love this feeling.
How did you reach your goals?
As I stated earlier, my Apple Watch really helped me achieve my weight loss goals- as did the YAZIO app. YAZIO really helps me track what I eat in particular. I use YAZIO to remind myself to drink water and to watch my calorie intake. I reached my weight loss goals by staying consistent.
The days I did not want to run, I forced myself to run. And I tried to push myself as well. I would run 7 miles one day and realized I could actually run 7 miles. Then I would start running 7 miles two or three days a week.
How did YAZIO help you?
YAZIO has been fantastic! In particular, I use YAZIO to track my calorie intake. It is fantastic for that. I also love the fact that YAZIO reminds me to drink water. I absolutely hate drinking water, but it has helped me with my calorie intake. I also love love love the fact that YAZIO syncs with my Apple Watch and it knows when I exercise and applies my calorie deficit to my total calories for the day.
Did you have setbacks?
Recently I hit a plateau. I was still running, but was not losing any more weight and, in fact, I started gaining a small amount of weight back. I started panicking because I had come so far and did not want to return to the way I was. By chance, I started working as a bike courier and that broke through my plateau. Because of my job, I am now exercising for a full four hours a day at least. Because of this, I am not running as much, I am just too tired after work.
Recently I started running again. I have to be careful because I can over exercise because of my job, but I need to run because it calms my brain and offers me something that no other exercise can. Between running and biking every day, my weight has started coming down again, and I have started seeing my body become very sculpted like I’ve never seen before.
What advice do you have for other users?
Tips for other users:
- Consistency is key. Do you have to force yourself to work out consistently? I use my Apple Watch for this. It’s a fantastic tool. I like to look back at my past workouts and see that I completed my “rings” every day. As long as I do this, I will maintain or lose weight. If you don’t have an Apple Watch, I would suggest documenting your workouts in a workout journal or calendar.
- 80% of weight loss is what you eat, unless you are an athlete. I fall into the latter category- I am a marathon runner, so most of my weight loss has come from running, but I have cut out sweets, and I am also a vegetarian, so most of my meals are very healthy. I eat very cleanly and I eat a lot of vegetables. Asparagus is my favorite.
- When you hit a plateau, try something new. After recently hitting a plateau of my own, I started working as a bike courier, and it has drastically changed my body. I have begun losing weight again and have noticed a lot more muscle tone.
- Do an exercise that you love, you are more likely to do this exercise consistently. My favorite exercise is running. It is extremely meditative for me. I not only use it to lose weight, but it tends to set my mind in a good place for the rest of the day. If I don’t run, I feel anxious and my ADHD is more pronounced. I run every day because I truly love it.
- "I’m not going to lay off or quit just because I’m busy. If I used being busy as an excuse not to run, I’d never run again. I have only a few reasons to keep on running, and a truckload of them to quit." - Haruki Murakami
What are your future goals?
At this point in my life, I am starting over. I lost many things when my fiancé died in December. It feels great to be sober and reaching for my goals again. I was in a hole for so long and I never want to go back. I know Adam would want me to be happy and I want to live right by him.
Because of my addiction, I have not worked in 10 years. The courier job I have now is a big step towards my dream of becoming successful. I dropped out of law school because of drugs. I would like to finish law school or get my PhD in psychology.
Why do you want to tell your story?
It is important for people to know that they are not alone. There are many addicts out there that are having a hard time, whether they are drug addicts or food addicts. It is important for them to hear stories of people who have been successful in defeating their demons. I hope this has helped.