I think Crystal’s story will resonate with a lot of people. Stress is a big trigger as to why people gain weight and understandable so. It’s how those people get out of the slump that inspires us….I’ll let Crystal and her abs tell you that story 🙂
I started with Disney races a little different than some people. I started as a volunteer. After being average weight most of my life, in 2006 our family went through some very stressful times with my than 6 year old son. Basically 4 months of waiting for biopsy results, surgery, etc. I didn’t handle any of it well to say the least and I turned to food for comfort during that time. I gained 40 lbs in 4 months!
Being a huge Disney fan I had heard about the Inaugural Disneyland Half Marathon and I decided it would be fun to volunteer. I was so inspired by the people out there of all shapes and sizes doing that race that I decided in 2007 I was going to do the 5K and work my way up to the Half. Unfortunately I didn’t make the changes I needed to and by summer 07 I reached my highest weight of 210 lbs. I was miserable and now I had to do a 5K totally untrained. After completing the Disneyland 5K that year I vowed to work on my health so I could come back and do the Half. I actually lost about 30 lbs and kept it off from late 2008 – 2010. During that time I walked many Half marathons and also did my first Marathon (WDW 2009) and first Goofy Challenge (2010).
In Spring 2010 during a routine physical my doctor told me that my blood pressure was a concern. It had been borderline for some time and she wanted me to take medication. All I could think about was my boys. My sons are both severely autistic and will need care well into their adult lives. I did not want to do anything that could prevent me from being there to care for them for as long as possible. So I knew I needed to make changes and get the other 50 lbs off. I’d like to say I had that “a-ha” moment and did the work but it didn’t go that smoothly for me. For the remainder of 2010 I struggled with yo-yoing back and forth and could never keep my weight down.
In early 2011 I finally got real about my relationship with food. I could no longer use it to comfort me. I needed to address the real issue that I worked out solely so I could eat! So I totally changed my eating at that point. Got rid of the junk in my house and loaded up on the healthy foods that I enjoyed eating. After about a month of that, I was ready to find an exercise plan that would really make a difference for me. As much as I enjoyed walking, it just wasn’t cutting it physically anymore. So one early morning I saw an infomercial for a workout called Turbo Fire. I was hooked! I had to have this! So I got Turbo Fire and sprung for the deluxe set (which was a 20 week program!) and dug in! From April 2011 to Nov 2011 I did that program and lost 50 lbs!
With the weight gone and my fitness and health back on track, I started running more during the runDisney races. Every race my time would improve just a little more. I went from walking marathons to running marathons. Definitely a proud moment for this one time couch potato!
I made it my mission to try to inspire others to take charge of their health. Since the at home workouts helped me so much, I decided to become an Independent Team Beachbody Coach so I could help others reach their fitness goals as well. In January 2014 I took it one step further and became a NASM Certified Personal Trainer so I could help even more.
Never in my life would I have thought that volunteering at the Disneyland Half could turn into a whole new life for me and my family. I am blessed beyond measure and only hope to pay it forward.
About Crystal: I’m a 40 year old married mother of 2 teen boys. I work from home helping people with their health and fitness as an Independent Team Beachbody Coach and NASM Certified Personal Trainer. My online site is www.runthepark.com. I’m currently training for several runDisney races including my second Dopey Challenge followed by the new Star Wars Rebel Challenge.
Has running at Disney helped to transform your life? If so, I want to hear your story! Send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org to be featured on an upcoming Transformation Tuesday!