Best Fit Friend Story: Running With My BFF

What makes a fit life even better? A BFF! And by that we mean a Best Fit Friend! As part of BFF Week, we’re sharing some of our readers’ best fit friend stories! Today’s is from Michelle, whose partners in (fit) crime is Gwen. See all the BFF stories here.

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As I was rapidly texting one night with a silly grin on my face, my boyfriend asked me what Gwen and I talk about all day. My reply was simple: food, running and nonsense.

Gwen and I have been friends since we won the Fourth of July lip sync competition in fifth grade, in which we performed “Respect” by Aretha Franklin. Our dance moves and 10-year-old sass created a friendship that I could not live without today.

Our friendship has always been rooted in our desire to be active. In middle school, many of our best memories were made at the gym. Every Sunday I’d meet Gwen at the YMCA. The purpose was to go and play basketball, but our hidden intention was always to show off in front of the eighth-grade boys who were there.

During the summer months, we’d ride our bikes all over town for hours at a time. Most of those bike rides landed us at the ice cream shop, but then we’d keep on riding as long as the sun was up.

College took Gwen and I separate ways, but if we were back home on a weekend, I could count on a morning run with my gal. Once we tired of running, we’d walk until we were completely caught up on each others’ lives. This, of course, could take hours.

We were always able to bond over activity, but it wasn’t until Gwen was diagnosed with Irritable Bowel Syndrome that we were able to strengthen our friendship over healthy food. Gwen had to eliminate several foods from her diet, and it was frustrating for her. My new mission was to make healthy recipes that my best friend could enjoy.

Several gluten-free, dairy-free birthday cakes later, I found that I, too, was blessed with the inconvenience that is IBS. Eliminating my favorite foods made me realize how tough Gwen has had it the past few years. She has since helped me find other options that have kept me sane and gotten me through the dark days. We text constantly, sharing recipes and tips for healthy foods that we can both digest.

Gwen and I now live three hours apart, but I have never felt closer to her. We talk every day, whether it be motivating each other to go for a run after work or talking the other out of that piece of pizza, which would no doubt cause a slew of other problems.

All grown up, our metabolisms don’t quite work as fast as they did when we ran around for hours as kids. Thus, we plan our weekend get-togethers around racing 5Ks. We recently met up for the Nacho Ordinary 5K in her city, and a Mustache Bash 5K later this fall is in talks.

Gwen is my best fit friend because she keeps me running and healthy, but mostly because she makes me laugh through it all. —Michelle

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