Guest Post: “From skinny to strong!"
By: Stephanie Schultz
Hey guys! I’m super excited about sharing Stephanie’s story with you. I think a lot of you can probably relate to what she has to say, her story and how her mindset was years ago.
Stephanie and I “met” on Instagram and I instantly fell in love with her account. Her tag line is “Weak to Strong” (and you’ll definitely see the truth of this below!!)
She’s so real, super encouraging, and just gives it to you like it is.
Her big thing is helping women feel confident, empowering them to build sexy muscles in all the right places ;) and transforming their lives from mediocre to magical.
She’s a personal trainer who went through a time of really wanting to be skinny (thinking that would make her happy), but instead found herself miserable. Now, she’s totally transformed not just her body (scroll down to see how smokin’ hot this girl is!!), but even more importantly her mind:
The way she views herself and her life now is vastly different than before.
Here’s her story…
“I always viewed myself as the "fat and ugly girl" growing up. I was never active, and never felt like I was as "pretty" as the other girls.
I grew up being very aware that I was book-smart. I got really good grades, so I began validating my worth by numbers and awards. 100%. 10/10.
I carried that validation with me throughout high school and into university when it got really bad.
I realized that my idea of "perfection" wasn't realistic and I was never going to be "perfect" (duh).
And that was so hard for me to admit because it defined me my whole entire life. It was ALSO hard for me to face the emotions of being lonely, sad, and just not feeling good enough in my body.
So I turned to the Internet to learn how to drop a few pounds. I thought if I just lost a little bit of weight, I would be happy.
I started slowly with dieting and exercise.
But before I knew it, I was so obsessed to the point that I weighed myself multiple times a day and stopped eating any of my favorite foods.
I was doing HOURS of cardio a day. Usually in the morning and in the evening. I was literally wasting away.
I spent so much of my time scrolling through blogs trying to find ways to eat even less and be smaller.
I remember family and friends being concerned but I shrugged it off and said, "I am just being healthy," even though I was struggling so bad.
I had no energy. I couldn't concentrate. I was irritable, hungry, sad, lonely, confused and I just wanted to feel happy.
I was a woman, but I looked like a little girl.
Before I knew it, a few years later, I found myself crying in my kitchen because I realized my life wasn't going where I wanted. I wasn't happy. I wasn't happy in school and I knew the path I was on wasn't for me.
And it FINALLY HIT ME!!
A HUGE part of my eating disorder was because of all the negative emotions I was experiencing. Instead of dealing with them head-on, I suppressed them by allowing my eating disorder to be my best friend.
But it wasn't my best friend - it controlled me and ruined years of my life.
BUT as soon as I was able to recognize what the root cause was, I was able to heal my body. Because it was never about the food, or weighing a certain number.
It was about control.
Once I let that go, I started gaining weight back, ate like a normal person, and decided to exercise in a way that felt good (because let's be real - hours of cardio a day is not fun).
Today, I empower women to realize that they are more than their body and that 99% of the time, it's an underlying cause of negative emotions that cause us to turn to restricting food and obsessing over our bodies.
The battle of gaining weight was not easy since I spent years doing the opposite. But every day I knew I felt better, had more energy, and my life came back.
We think we are supposed to be a certain way and then when we realize we "aren't" that way, we think we fail.
That's not true.
We think we are doing ourselves good by becoming smaller, but becoming smaller has nothing to do with who you are as a person.
As you can see from Stephanie’s story, trying to cover up your emotions, insecurities, or self-love issues with dieting, exercise, your weight, or trying to be perfect is never going to be the answer.
The key is truly LOVING yourself, taking care of yourself, not being tough on yourself, and enjoying your life. Don’t take all this stuff so seriously!! It’ll drive you crazy!
Eat the foods that you enjoy and make you feel the best (both mentally and physically), do exercise you ACTUALLY enjoy (not the ones you feel like you “have to do,” and let go of the need to control every little thing, trying to be perfect in every single way… it’s impossible!