Welcome to Friday’s Featured Female!
This weekly series features inspirational stories from admirable women. IMHO, it’s always good to be reminded of how strength, determination, hard work, heart and ingenuity can impact the quality of one’s life and I’m proud that these women will allow me to share their stories here.
Today I’m featuring Lindsay@FitandAwesome. Lindsay has been in my LA blogging universe for awhile and after I got the chance to hang out with her, I knew we’d get along. Lindsay is quite an athlete – she runs, surfs and snowboards and was even featured in a Verizon #MoreSoCal campaign where she’s shown surfing and snowboarding all in one day (check out the with GoPro video)! I love that Lindsay is not only an athlete but she has also made nutrition a very important part of her life. Come learn about this athlete and social media maven now!
Sooooo have you met Lindsay?
I had been struggling with GI issues for years. I didn’t know what the cause was and my weight suffered as a result of it. I didn’t understand why I worked out 5-6x a week yet I looked like I was a couch potato. I was embarrassed that I worked out so hard yet had nothing to show for it and continued to struggle inside and out. In December 2011 after seeing several doctors I saw a doctor who determined I had some sort of food allergy and gave me a blood test. The results can back and I found out I had a severe gluten intolerance.
I was in denial over the whole thing and wasn’t ready to drastically change my diet. Sure I wanted to feel better but I’m also Italian. Giving up pizza and pasta just seemed unreasonable for me. I decided I wasn’t going to do it.
A few months went by and I still suffered from my same Gi issues. I was tired of it but still wasn’t ready to make a change. My aha moment happened at the Ragnar Relay 2011. I was in a van with all runners who ran just as much as me (and even more) and all looked like they were in perfect shape. They all ate really healthy too and followed a paleo style diet. I thought to myself that maybe it was time to give my diet change a try and really follow the doctors orders and cut out gluten and see what happens.
The Monday after Ragnar I got started on my new diet – a gluten free diet with a focus on whole foods ala paleo style. Within 3 weeks I had lost 10 lbs that I struggled to lose pretty much my entire adult life. I was thrilled.
Going gluten free was a huge learning curve and very hard for me at first. I learned to listen to my body and read labels. There were times when I accidentally are gluten and I paid the price for it. Now I know what my food triggers are and I stay away from them. I am proud to say that I’ve eliminated 95% of my GI issues and dropped my cholesterol by over 60 points since going gluten free. At first I thought it would be hard to give up my favorite foods but seeing how much better I feel really helps me stay away from them.
I also reintroduced foods back into my diet. After 20 years of not eating red meat, I tried steak. And I loved it. And six months ago on a recent trip to New Zealand I tried pork for the first time. Now I am a full blown carnivore! I primarily stick to grass fed beef and organic chicken and turkey whenever possible.
I posted a lot on twitter about my diet change and my struggles and found there was a whole online community of people and support around me. People who were getting the same guilt from their friends for eating clean and struggling with giving up favorite foods like bread and beer. Many people asked me what my link to my website was and at the time I only had a basic personal one. And this is how my site, Fit and Awesome, was born.
I’m so glad I had that kick in the pants and aha moment to get me to where I am today. I’ve learned so much about health and wellness and made myself and my family healthier too. My mom suffers from colitis and recently went gluten free to help with her issues after seeing my results. I’m not a nutrition or expert but I do hope that sharing my story can help motivate others.
To connect on a deeper level with Linsday, you can find her on:
What’s the one health change that’s made the most difference in your life?