I’ve always been active. Growing up, I tried playing all kinds of sports – gymnastics, swimming, softball, track – and eventually found my spot in pole vaulting. And I grew up in a family that was concerned about being healthy… having to drink milk with dinner, eat my vegetables, and only eat dessert on special occasions. Being young and active I had little care or motivation to consider the value nutrition could have on my performance or long term well-being. I won 2 state championships and that got me a ticket to continue competing at the collegiate level.
When I got to college, my training intensified and my coach sent me to the nutritionist saying, “Fat don’t fly.” It wasn’t personal, he just wanted to see me excel at that level. So I learned about supplements, body fat %, and tried the plan they gave me. I never saw much progress and really wasn’t that committed to it.
After my four years of competition were up, I no longer cared about my nutrition and exercise from a performance standpoint, but I wanted to maintain a healthy lifestyle. So I continued to exercise and make good choices about the types of foods I ate.
Then, at 25, I was diagnosed with ovarian cancer. And I realized my body wasn’t quite as resilient as I thought it was when I was jumping over a 12′ bar. All of the sudden the importance of my health came to the forefront of my life. During chemo, I could barely run and barely eat. My mom got a book for me about the connection between nutrition and cancer and I saw how little I actually knew about it and how complex nutrition is. I learned things like, “Sugar feeds cancer,” and that the US is the most overfed and undernourished country. That if our bodies are healthy, then it will naturally fight off the free-radicals before they get out of control. So how does an active, strong, 25-year-old get cancer?
After surgery and 18 weeks of chemo, I began the road to recovery. Over the next year I started exercising again (doing things like P90X, Insanity, and even some pole vaulting), gained back the weight I’d lost (plus some… oops!), started dating a great guy (who turned out to be my husband), and moved into a new position with my job. But I still felt tired most of the time. Until I was introduced to blood sugar stabilization and Venice Nutrition. The system helped me find balance with my health, eliminate cravings, and increase my energy.