As a certified personal trainer, group exercise instructor and fitness writer, I know a lot about exercise and quite a bit about nutrition. I know what it takes to lose weight, be healthy and fuel my body properly. But for years I didn’t practice what I preached.
I spent years in college and shortly thereafter working out way too much, succumbing to the pressures of fitting in and trying to excel in a career where what you look like determines your skill and professionalism in the eyes of many. And all of the extreme exercise sessions (teaching multiple group fitness classes every day of the week, usually in addition to my own workout), some major life changes, spiraled negatively into my eating as well. I was desperately trying to avoid the “freshman (and sophomore, junior and senior) 15” that so many warn of, and was religiously counting my calories. I was strict about keeping my caloric intake very low, even though I was easily burning thousands of calories a day by exercising.