My Story: Food, Fitness, Health & Beyond

I’ve lost count on how many times I’ve updated my “about me” page.  As I work to build a career in the nutrition world and further connect with people, I think it is super important to share my story and how I got to where I am today – because I certainly was not always eating veggies, grillin’ meat, running or lifting weights.

I’ve of course shared bits and pieces of this all over the blog – but it’s nice to have this written in one post. I hope you enjoy getting to know me a little better (and sorry for the redundancy you loyal readers, love you!) Any feedback or comments are always welcome :)

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Hi, I’m Amy! I’m a former NCAA athlete, Twinkie eater and calorie counter. Now I’m into CrossFit, running, yoga and eating real food. I’m 23, single and live in Toronto, Canada. I love to travel, treat myself at Lululemon (or at the nail salon) and re-read Harry Potter until I’ve memorized every spell.

This little space is where I talk about eating and loving real, nutritious food (ditching nutrition dogma and processed gunk), staying active (moving our bodies to find strength and confidence) and most importantly: loving ourselves. I strive to be the happiest and healthiest version of me and hope to help in your journey to become the happiest and healthiest version of you.

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Chicago – 2014

I didn’t always live such a healthy life. I was always active but didn’t eat very well. Now I believe in fueling our bodies with delicious, nutritious real food. But let’s back up a little…

Growing up, I loved playing sports. I started to seriously pursue playing basketball in high school but my diet consisted of lots of nutrient-void carbs and sugar. I ate cereal with skim milk or bagels or toast for breakfast. Lunches were sandwiches or Subway. Dinners featured lots of pasta since it was fast and easy – and I was running to basketball practices/games/tournaments. I was in pretty good shape but I remember wishing that I could lose some weight or be thinner somehow but I never did anything about it. I was often getting injured and had bad acne but I overall felt healthy.

Amy high school
Israel – 2009

My hard work in the classroom and on the court lead me to study and play basketball at Emerson College in Boston, MA. But like most college kids, my lifestyle took a bit of an unhealthy turn. I drank more beer than water and frequented the pasta bar more often than the salad bar. I ate lots of pizza, Sun Chips, and dining hall food. Even though I was active, I was drinking a lot, eating a lot and started to pack on the pounds little by little, which I started to notice on my five foot frame.

Crazy
Random party – 2010

Once I moved off-campus in my junior/3rd year, I started going grocery shopping, cooking for myself and learned about calories and counted them. I ate more real, whole foods but was also eating a lot of “diet and health food”: 100 calorie packs, frozen dinners, sugary-low-cal granola bars, protein bars, greek yogurt, fat-free everything. I also stopped eating red meat. On-top of playing basketball, I joined a boxing gym and started taking classes there a few times a week. I began to lose weight and I started to feel happier and more confident.

Before and after2
Left: 2009 Right: 2012

I graduated in May 2013 with a degree in Communications and Journalism. After graduation, I said good-bye to my friends, frat parties, Newbury Street and drove a UHaul back to my hometown of Toronto. Single. Living with my parents. Oh the glamorous life of a post-grad in the “real world.”

Amy uhaul
En route to Toronto – 2013

I fell in love with running and ate a mainly plant-based diet: lots of fruits, veggies, beans, lentils and whole grains. But I was blinded by conventional wisdom: eat less, low calorie foods, do lots of cardio, fit into the skinniest jeans, meat will give you heart disease, salt is bad for you, cholesterol will kill you.

I got prettyyyyy skinny, my skin began to break-out, I had digestive issues and developed some food sensitivities. Right before running my first half-marathon, I hurt my knee. I still ran the race but my body was telling me things.

Done
October 2013

Well, it was time to listen. So, I re-evaluated my diet and workout regimen. I completed the Whole 30 and experienced very positive results – my skin and digestion dramatically improved and I overall felt better. I started learning more about food and how it fuels us and makes us feel. I cut back on the cardio and started lifting some weights – which terrified me at first… I didn’t want to get “bulky”. But I’m not.

Today, I have stopped counting calories and fuel and nourish my body with real food – you know, the food that’s always been food (none of that chemical filled stuff). My diet consists of: lots of organic fruits and veggies, organic chicken, wild fish, properly raised meat, organic free-range eggs, nuts, seeds, oils; some properly prepared grains, beans and legumes; and lots of dark chocolate.

Food prep May 31, 2014.jpg
I love food prep

I have eliminated processed foods and added sugars from my diet. I am mainly gluten free and dairy free – but I do enjoy a cinnamon bun or ice-cream every now and again! I make my food choices based on what feels best for my body and what works for me physically and intellectually. I aim for consistency, not perfection. I’m no gourmet chef but I try hard and keep it simple, healthy and delicious.

Amy Real Food Toronto box
June – 2014

I am currently studying to become a Registered Nutritional Consulting Practitioner (aka a nutritionist and health coach) and will be launching Honey Bee Health & Nutrition in January 2015 – I can’t wait to work with you!

Alive books1
Book worm

When I’m not geeking out on nutrition, I work as a freelance writer and coach girls basketball.

Maccabi1
Ballin

I love to WOD, clean and jerk (CrossFit obsessed), run (I’m training for my first marathon and I’ve run two half marathons: here and here) and do yoga (pigeon pose is my fave).

Amy Beach WOD
July – 2014

I am happy, healthy, confident and strong. Yup, I gained weight, but I feel better, my skin is clearer and I smile a lot more. I love being active but I rest when I am tired. I love running and doing yoga but I also love lifting weights. I ditched the diet mentality and simply nourish my body. I eat egg yolks, fat and reserve my measuring cups for baking.

Amy Fit Girl Tank
August – 2014
Amy Goodlife Half Action Shot - May 2014 copy
May – 2014
Amy Om TO 2014
June – 2014

So that’s my story but I am certainly far from perfect – we are all a work in progress. I hope you will join me for the rest of the ride.

Amy beer and grill.jpg
Beer guzzler to grill master

 

Questions of the day…

What’s your story? Okay, the short version :)

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Keep in touch:

Email –> amylittlehoneybee@gmail.com 

Twitter –> @thelilhoneybee

Instagram –> thelittlehoneybee

Facebook –> The Little Honey Bee

Pinterest –> thelilhoneybee

Bloglovin –> The Little Honey Bee

 

 

 

16 thoughts on “My Story: Food, Fitness, Health & Beyond

  1. Love this – am new to your blog so this was a fab intro! I too love pigeon pose! :) I have constant problems with my skin & digestion but my food choices are far from perfect! Hope to become a regular reader x

  2. I love how real and honest you are. I’ve faced a lot of similar challenges in trying to be happy and healthy. We’re all in this together!! Run fast & lift heavy!

  3. Okay, can I just say that I love the “beer guzzing” photo at the end? I think it’s super cute of you, haha! Even though you’ve come a long ways from your college days, I love this “about me” – It really tells a great story!

  4. Thank you so much for your blog and for sharing all of your experience! My story starts out much like yours, except that I work for a package delivery company and was working 12-14 hour days, 5 days a week very physical work for many, many years. At the age of 30 my body started to fail me. I thought I was just getting old and was diagnosed with thyroid cancer. My thyroid was removed and I gained 50 pounds overnight. I could not lose weight no matter what I did. Thanks to eating real food, minimizing stress, and accupuncture, I am slowly but surely losing the weight. I mostly attribute the progress to the good, whole foods. My body is no longer failing me, I went to Chicago a week ago and walked the town all day for two days and my body more than kept up. Previously, it would have stopped on me after 2 hours. I love when you post recipes, what you ate, and especially how you pack to eat healthy on the road. I cannot thank you enough!

  5. Thank you for sharing this! Like others have said, I think most of us can relate to parts of this. It’s great to see that you’re feeling and looking better than ever. That’s what it’s all about! :)

  6. Love reading your story! I really need to redo my About Me page. It sits as exactly the same as when I first started my blog over 2.5 years ago! I will have to do some serious thinking about what I want to reveal when I choose to do that though ;)

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