It’s Not Goodbye, It’s See You Later

My story – Part 1/3

As a child, I remember feeling very insecure and shy in social situations. In addition to being shy I’ve always had a very strong personality and presence, and some people just don’t like me. During middle school I had very few friends to hang out with, no close friends and was bullied a lot. I remember I would always pretend to be sick so I wouldn’t have to go to school. I won’t go into too much detail with the bullying, but for a young, very tall, shy girl, it was soul crushing and made me doubt myself and over-analyze everything aaaaall the time. I felt embarrassed by it and would never tell my parents what was going on. When it happened I would pretend it didn’t bother me, then go cry for myself in a quiet corner when I couldn’t take it anymore. I had a passion for horses and a good family that made my childhood great overall, but anyone who has been bullied as a child can understand how it scars you. It sent me into a year-long spiral of self-hate and not feeling worthy, but eventually I understood that this didn’t only happen to me – a lot of people go through it. And getting over it is all about how you deal with it. You’re only in control of yourself and you can either allow their opinions and actions to affect you – or you can brush it off and continue to do your own thing.

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I went from being a broken teenager to a successful fitness professional, living an amazing life in Dubai. This is my story…

I was a tall and skinny child, but from the age of 15 I started struggling with my weight and body-image issues. Since then I’ve been on more crash-diets than I can count, done excessive exercise to ”make up” for what I ate and dealt with symptoms of stress, depression and binge-eating for many many years.

The craziest diet I ever did was eating nothing but 3×80 g. of chicken and 1 apple per day for 21 days. Obviously this made me lose an insane amount of weight in no time, but as soon as I started eating again I gained it all back (plus interest)

I also did The Cabbage Soup Diet, meal replacement diets, less-than-1000-kcal-per-day-calorie counting, 2 hours of cardio per day, detox-tea, BCAA/smoothie fasts and I don’t even know what else… I was obsessed with trying to fight my body and lose the weight. My ideal up until the age of 21 was ”size 0” and the very slim body I myself had had as a child and young teenager.

In may 2011 I hit my highest weight of 86,6 kg. And I decided I had to do something – so I signed up for a half marathon. At this time I was working two jobs: one was an extremely stressful job as a full time sales manager in a gym and during the weekends I worked at the exclusive night club Zen in Copenhagen. I didn’t even realize how much stress my body was battling already, and now I decided to run 21,1 km. at the heaviest I’d ever been.

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However, I told EVERYONE about my plans. I almost didn’t train for the race as I was so busy and my inner motivation quickly died out. But because I’d spoken to everyone about my plans, I refused to back out. So in august 2011 I completed my first half marathon. I dragged myself across the finish line, waddled home and I remember just lying on my bed feeling so so sick and falling asleep. At this point in my life I was always fighting my body, not ever giving it a chance to find balance and this race was the perfect example of that.

Two-three days later, I’d reached my limit. I went to my doctor who diagnosed me with stress and anxiety and I went on a two month sick leave. I remember almost nothing from the first month except sleeping and watching tv-shows. At the age of 21 I was broken. I’d hit rock bottom. Even simple tasks such as grocery shopping in the small supermarket across the street seemed too overwhelming.

To be continued...

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// Amanda Louise
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