A little bit about me…

000_0933Growing up in the Pocono Mountains in PA, I was always busy with one activity or another.

From Little League, to soccer, playing in the woods or performing I was constantly on the move.

In 7th grade (which I’ve noticed seems to be a common age for people to make the same connection I did), I realized that the meat I was eating used to actually be animals.  It was alarming to me, and decided I wanted to try being a vegetarian.  When I broached the subject with my mom she told me she admired my dedication, but that I wouldn’t be able to do that because she didn’t know how to get me all the nutrients I needed without feeding me meat.  So she told me I could give up red meat, but still had to eat chicken.478917_352220088154753_904422837_o

Which I did.

When I went off to college, I became less physically active but did a ton of walking in NYC.  However, my weight slowly crept up, and by the time I went into my senior year I had reached 160 lbs.  I was miserable and hated the way I looked.  That’s when I decided to try out Weight Watchers.  There I discovered how woefully ignorant I was about food, portion sizes, and nutrition in general.  All my knowledge was based on the food pyramid that you learn in school, and having grown up during the LOW FAT fad of the 90’s I always thought fat was bad.  Also during this time Atkins had really taken off.  I never hopped on that band wagon (despite knowing a number of fellow actors who did), since I had such great success at Weight Watchers once I got educated about how to fuel my body properly.

In a matter of 3 months I had dropped 20 lbs and felt amazing about myself.  For the next 3 years I maintained that weight simply by eating normal portion sizes, increasing the amount of vegetables on my plate and not living off bread and pasta.  In 2009, (2 years into my maintenance) I read SKINNY BITCH which challenges you to try a vegan diet for 30 days.  “Well that’s impossible” I thought.  Turns out it wasn’t, and in less than 2 weeks my energy levels shot through the roof.  From there I continued a vegan diet for 6 months before caving after pressure from my boyfriend at the time.  However, a year later I had recommitted myself to a plant based diet and haven’t looked back since.

In June of 2009 I went on a solo backpacking trip around Europe for 3 weeks, where I spent about 10 hours a day, every day walking around European cities and hiking in the Alps.  By the time I got back I was on the first truly active streak of my life.  I decided to take up running, something I had always hated.  I found that it was a great way to deal with the stressful feelings of going through my breakup.  At this time I had also moved to NJ and was commuting to NYC for work.  My daily schedule was to run 30 minutes in the morning, walk to the bus (3 miles), walk from Port Authority to 14th & 11th Ave (3 miles), then walk back to Port Authority, walk home from the bus stop in Jersey, and then go for a 30 minute bike ride.  I was averaging about 5 hours of physical activity every single day, and I can safely say I was in the best shape I’ve ever been in.  While I didn’t weigh myself during this time I’m fairly certain I dropped an additional 10 lbs and was down to 130 which was my weight when I was a Freshman in Highschool.

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Sadly, tragedy struck in the Fall of 2009, and my mother was diagnosed with cancer.  I went from 5 hours of activity a day to NO ACTIVITY at all and spending every day for a month sitting in a hospital room.  From there I slowly started putting weight back on, and when I moved down to Asheville, NC that number increased more rapidly til finally in the Fall of 2013 I topped out at 170 lbs.  My diet hadn’t changed much, perhaps eating more than usual but I stopped moving all together.  This blog is my journey back to being the best version of myself.

You can read more about my story here.

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