When Kristen White moved away to attend college, she defied the odds by losing 30 pounds instead of gaining the dreaded, “Freshman 15.” Faced with a new routine, different foods and, “more natural movement around campus,” Kristen lost weight without really thinking about it. The epiphany that she could lose weight without fad diets and by simply eating in a more mindful way, gave Kristen the motivation to lose more. Now, 85 pounds thinner, she’s excited to focus on her next learning experience, a new baby!
Family strife can have a profound effect on the way we take care of ourselves. Kristen’s parents divorced when she was just nine years old. She recalls this life event being the catalyst for future years of emotional eating. “I didn’t know how to manage all the emotions that stirred up,” she explained. “I did a lot of comforting myself through food. This became a habit that took years to break.” She tried losing weight in high school, but the diets never stuck.
After losing 30 pounds during her first year in college, Kristen felt empowered. For real weight loss, she focused the following:
- Getting healthy on the inside; healing old wounds was a huge factor of success for me.
- Learning to eat more mindfully (i.e., eating when I was hungry, stopping when I was full).
- Learning about food and nutrition so I could understand what would be healthy for my body.
- Learning to exercise in a way that I enjoyed.