By Sarah Pierce
Many people look at me and assume that I have always been athletic, have great genetics or haven't had to work very hard for my physique or abilities. It’s one of the most frustrating parts about what I do. When I first introduced myself to the world of health and fitness, I was 135 pounds, over 25% body fat, and had no strength or muscle. I was insecure about my weight, my stomach, my butt, everything. I couldn’t do a pull up or a push up, and my mile time was 10+ minutes. I had no idea what healthy eating was. In college I went on a “diet” where I only ate almonds, baby carrots, and rice cakes and rode on a stationary bike for over an hour a day. I wasted away, lost a ton of tissue, and was too light headed to do anything strenuous. My weight rebounded drastically immediately after I stopped.
"I am faster, have better endurance, sleep better, have better energy, and can see my abs for the first time in my life."
When I found CrossFit, I hated it at first. Coming from no fitness background, I was afraid of the movements, I hated being sore, and pushing my body that far was almost too much for me. But I stuck with it, ma inly due to the fact that I’m stubborn. And I learned to love fitness. I learned to love being strong, fast, and agile. I wasn't afraid to truly train to be stronger, and it helped me to reach my potential. I didn't allow what I thought I should look like to hold me back from doing something I loved, but it took time for me to develop those ideals, and I am still evolving.
My journey as an athlete has been anything but exponential: I have had setbacks, injuries, weight fluctuations, body image issues, and strange relationships with food. I can relate to many of the things people go through when they begin exercising or trying to eat “healthy”. I began with the Zone Diet - something that was effective - but I was not educated enough about to really implement properly to support my physical activity. I then moved to the Paleo diet when I didn't get the results I wanted. Eating very strict Paleo, I had a hard time with energy levels and wasn't getting enough carbohydrates, and my fat intake was through the roof. Though I was eating “clean”, I was overeating and not supporting my training. I gained a significant amount of weight. All of my lifts increased but so did my body fat. I felt bulky and slow. for more info!
At that point I became frustrated and discouraged, and quit trying to figure out my nutrition. I ate whatever I wanted whenever I wanted. I figured that my high activity level allowed for me to eat without thinking. “That’s why I work out right?” I would say as I finished off 3 cupcakes. I managed to pack on 15 pounds to my small frame. I was the heaviest I’d ever been at almost 160 lbs. I was very strong but not at all well rounded, and I hated the way I looked. I had no ab definition and no real muscle definition. I felt like my body didn't reflect my hard work. I killed myself in the gym, but it didn't reflect in my physical appearance. This was a huge struggle for me.
And I managed to go from 160 pounds to 140 pounds in less than one year. I lost almost no strength, gained confidence, and can finally say I’m proud of both my body and my athleticism. I am faster, have better endurance, sleep better, have better energy, and can see my abs for the first time in my life. For me, both my physique and my performance are important for my physical and mental health.
Trifecta Nutrition has been a recent addition to my life, and their meals have really helped me immensely to stay on track. I have clean, proportioned meals, ready to eat that taste good and are so easy to prepare. It stops me from making poor food choices and making the excuse that I “didn’t have anything prepared”. I don't waste food, as they're easy to freeze, and I’m not cooking too much in advance for food prep. My schedule is so busy, it’s great to be able to grab food and go.
Understanding that food is fuel and intake matters was key to my success. I advise you to take the next step in your life and find a professional who can help you get your nutrition to a healthy place. I guarantee you won’t regret it. It’s hard work but can change your entire life. I am a nutrition coach and offer these services to anyone who is ready to take that step: you can contact me at