In a peanut shell: I am 26 and even though my mind is often wandering to the mountains, I live in Calgary, Alberta. I am a kind, positive dreamer, who is very passionate and maybe just a little bit (ha! yeah right) stubborn. I love the outdoors. Hiking, fishing and camping are some of my favorite things. I laugh and smile a lot, I am fluent in sarcasm and witty puns and my family means the world to me. I love my job and I love to help people and make people smile.
I started ED-to-BQ as a way for me to document my own journey through life and running, but with a large focus on my eating disorder recovery process. After almost 4 years of disordered eating, food and appearance anxiety, compulsive exercising, extremely low self-esteem, a completely lack of self-love and moments of extreme depression I am finally fighting to get my life and my happiness back. Of course this fight is far from easy and definitely not linear, but I am doing my best - and that's all I can really ask of myself.
And in case you didn't know.. I LOVE RUNNING!
I have had a bumpy ride over the last couple years but running has completely changed my life. So much so that I am now training for my second marathon and I have set of goal of qualifying for the Boston Marathon by my 30th birthday (for anyone who doesn't know, you have to qualify to be able to register for the Boston Marathon, I have to get a sub-3:35 to qualify). Hence ED to BQ - I can be clever sometimes too. I love running because it makes me feel strong and powerful, I feel in control and (usually) unstoppable. I have never found anything that makes me as happy as running does. It is my moving meditation, my time to think and connect with myself and it is the one thing that makes me feel pride in myself and my body.
Running has given me a reason to see food, exercise and myself differently. The more I run, the less I think of food as the enemy. It is now a way to fuel my body to do what I love and to accomplish my goals, rather than just something I need to have so my parents won't worry. The more I run the less I focus on the calories or fat content and more on how I feel and how it tastes. Although I do choose to eat about 99% plant based, I no longer eat only fruit and vegetables. I now eat more than my previous max of 300-500 calories a day, I eat food that would have normally been completely off limits, I allow myself to crave food AND I eat carbs now! Did you know potatoes are delicious? Rice is also legit.
I used to obsess with the idea of burning off every calorie I had allowed myself to eat in a day and would become anxious, uncomfortably and mean if I wasn't able to 'even it out' in my head. I would spend 2 - 3 hours working out every day, usually twice a day. Sometimes even getting up 4 hours before work just to workout, only to come home and work out some more. I would do this even earlier after my diagnoses to hide it from my parents. This compulsion is growing weaker as my love for running is growing stronger. I run because I enjoy it, I cross train (when I feel like it) to help my running, and if I'm tired or exhausted, I rest! Sleep is also a cool thing I never used to appreciate or ever get enough of.
My disorder started in the summer of 2013 and by the end of that winter it had taken complete control over my life. I never felt good enough and I always wanted to be better. I always thought that if I was just a little thinner or I had more ab definition I would be happier, people would like me and maybe someone could even love me one day. I will not lie and say these thoughts aren't still in my head, every day I have to fight with that voice in my head that wants me to go back to how I was, and yes some days that voice wins but that's happening less and less thanks to my incredible support team and my love of running.
The 2017 Calgary Marathon was my first 26.2 miles (42.2 KMs for us normal metric folks). The race committee sent out an email asking for marathoners to 'share their story,' to which I went "Hell no!" Then after a lot of back and forth I decided maybe I would try. It was the hardest and most honest thing I had ever written, especially since strangers would be reading it and if it was picked, many more people would read it. But I did the damn thing and it ended making me feel really good about getting it out. I love the idea of being able to help anyone who is in recovery, anyone who loves running, or even just anyone who could use a reminder that everything is going to be okay. After sharing it with my family and my very close friends, they kept suggesting I should start a blog, so here's my attempt!
You can read my marathon story HERE.
I have vowed to myself and anyone reading this to be completely honest in any post I write, both good and bad. I will try my best to open up, even if this is just for me to read later in life but I hope my journey can help anyone who needs it, or that it can be at least a little entertaining.
To anyone reading this: please be kind. I'm doing my best.