My Story

Food Addiction to Health Coaching

Food Addiction to Health Coaching

Inner Fitness NC Health Coaching

Over the years I learned that food provided me comfort where that was sometimes lacking.

Inner Fitness NC Health Coaching

At almost forty years old, I am a new mom of a nine year-old girl. Before she came into my life, I used to say that no parent should ever use food as a bribe or a punishment for children’s behavior or as a means of getting close with them. In the year and half that my daughter has been with me, we have become regulars at Andy’s, Freddy’s, Baskin Robbins, Carolina Cones, Sweet Frog’s, The Quik Trip, and the frozen section of the grocery store late night.

I grew up in Myrtle Beach where a good time for me was ice cream on the boardwalk, going to Krispy Kreme at midnight, and finding the best restaurant in town that served the soulful southern fried chicken I was always seeking. Bread came with every meal. Gravy came with breakfast. And the eighties came with TV dinners and Little Debbies.

I came with an appetite for life.

Over the years I learned that food provided me comfort where that was sometimes lacking. My parents went through a rather nasty divorce, so my childhood had an intense undertone to it. I was a sensitive girl, and it was a bit much for me to take in. I wanted softness. I wanted cushioning. I wanted sweetness. I found it in food, in becoming fat.

Food and fat served me for many years, gave me a best friend when I did not have one, a self-love when I could not find mine, enjoyment when I could no longer conjure it on my own, and a life when I lost mine.

I became a violent eater as an adult.

I was violent with my body with the amount of sugar and breading I ate at one time. I pulled in parking lots and ate in secret – ice cream, cupcakes, cake slices from grocery store delis, king-size candy bars, donuts, and fast food meals I called snacks before or after meals.

I reached almost 230 lbs. by my mid-thirties. My pants were size 22, and I was on track to gain about fifteen more pounds each year.

Inner Fitness NC Health Coaching

The health problems that started were painful.

The health problems that started were painful.

My legs were restless and hurt frequently at night. My hips felt like they were having trouble distributing my weight evenly and were often achy. I developed thick calluses on my feet and constantly felt in pain. Every morning when I woke up my hands, fingers, arms, and toes were numb, sometimes from my fingertips all the way to my armpits. One toe lost feeling completely for about three years. My heartburn had me believing a dragon was squatting in my esophagus.

“Something told me not to take those meds, and all of a sudden someone else emerged in me.”

The turning point for me was when my hands started to turn blue. This seemed to bring on panic attacks, as I always felt short of breath and scared. I was later diagnosed with Raynaud’s disease and prescribed three different medications for beta-blockers and blood thinners. Something told me not to take those meds, and all of a sudden someone else emerged in me. I was angry at myself for letting things get so out of hand, especially at such a young age. I had guilt for causing my own health problems.

At thirty-five I was having circulation issues because my entire life I thought living was eating.

I was embarrassed and honestly wondering about my capabilities of evolving in my life. Surely I could evolve! I wanted to do more than evolve even. I wanted to live!!!! And somewhere deep in me, I knew that I had not done that yet, that I had been in hiding my whole life.  I was wounded by my own limiting beliefs and the roles I felt I needed to play for most of my life, and when life tried to involve me, I held up my wounds like trophies and said “No, thank you.”

But as I started to turn open towards the woman in the mirror and to the universe, the universe sent back to me a trainer, a nutritionist, and a new understanding that I could truly create the life I wanted and feel how I wanted to feel.

I learned to break up with my toxic relationship with food and with not participating.

I began to understand how my food addiction was my need to disconnect from myself and from others, and I was beginning to let that need go. I started to like the person from who I was trying so hard to disconnect for so long. I could sit with her because she was inspiring, followed through with life, and made me feel like I could do things I never thought were meant for me.

At this point in the beginning of my growth, my sister gave me a sticker message that said, “I Pledge to Live.”

It has been my motto for five years now.

At this point in the beginning of my growth, my sister gave me a sticker message that said, “I Pledge to Live.”

It has been my motto for five years now.

I found the most difficult workout in the area I could have found with the most dedicated, no- wasting-time trainers, who model the most healthy lifestyles I have ever witnessed. My mind told me I did not fit in there.

Wait. Who said I cannot be that?

Who said I cannot be an athlete like them? Who said I cannot kill it in CrossFit in my forties? Who said I cannot be whatever weight I want to be?!? Who? Who? Who? Where are you so I can kick your a__?!? What a stupid thing to say to me!!

Somewhere in these few years of inner transformation, I lost over seventy pounds. My health problems got better. My toe came back to life! I gained back some Covid/ got-a-new-daughter-and-trying-to-get-close-to-her-with-food weight, but now I am once again empowered and moving forward. Now, I want to SHOW her and myself that Glennon’s Doyle’s line, “We can do hard things” is true! We can!

Sometimes I do not know who this person is who still leads me to health daily.

I feel like I do not recognize the drive in me to go to group workouts, to take online nutrition courses, to post things about being healthy and sharing my food addiction vulnerably with the world, to get out of the restaurant world when it is all I have known for so long and step into a new field for weight loss when that is what I have mostly failed at in my life, and to get my health coaching certification so that I can help other people find the one in them who is ready to evolve! Then I remind myself of the brave 230 lb. woman who said yes and got me here, and I am grateful.

Many people feel stuck and fall victim to unhealthy eating cycles, telling themselves the same stories over and over again about their limitations. I want to share my experience with people who may not know where and how to start healing and changing those patterns. I want to help them find their bravery.

I am going through a specialty course for emotional eating because that is what most people deal with who have food issues. It can feel out of control, and we often do not understand our behaviors around food as they relate to our emotions and other primary areas of our lives. And like me, many people learned a long time ago that food makes us feel temporarily better, so the unhealthy patterns of overeating and emotional eating are very difficult to rewire. But it can be done! I am living proof, and my journey continues!

I am aiming to partner with people who are ready to explore their health journeys. Discomfort is part of the course, but I am here to tell you life happens on the other side of comfort. I’m bringing to the table all of my passion for transformation, my full scope of understanding of food and all of its roles, and my commitment to helping you rewrite your health narrative. I hope my story inspires you to relook at your own. I am willing and so ready to go there with you when you are!

WHO SAYS YOU CANNOT BE _____________??? NOT ME!

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