Hey Evolve Fit family, my name is Samantha Van Kooten. I am so excited to share my love for fitness with you all! I’m not about sugar coating anything because like everything else in life, fitness does not come easy to everyone. And I am the perfect example of that. At a young age I was overweight and very unhappy with how I looked. I was constantly wanting to be going to the pool and wanting to be in sports and keeping up with all my friends and family would get harder and harder.
My sophomore year of high school my mom decided to take our school pictures….yes ladies that means I was a model for the day and probably acted like one! Those pictures, I remember them like we took them yesterday. I had on an orange halter top that I thought I looked hot in and my “short” jean shorts and of course bling flip flops because everyone wore them! And away I went posing and feeling fabulous! Until when my mom brought the pictures home for me to pick out the one I wanted to give out to friends. I said none, I looked horrible!!! That’s when I saw I had a tire around my waist I looked so unhappy ladies I looked so uncomfortable sitting in a swing at the park! At that point I knew something needed to change and I had to figure out how to do it!
Now I was not at all a star athlete, I mean come on my school was so small that if you went to first day of practice you basically made the team! So as a girl who loved being active and around friends I went out for every sport….softball, volleyball,
basketball, track, heck I was even a life guard! But for some reason being in all those activities I was still not seeing a change. So I thought to myself what should I stop doing….and that’s when a light bulb came on and I said to myself, “Sam you drink enough pop in a day to supply a gas station!” Well what can I say Mt.Dew was life!
So I started with that, I gave up pop cold turkey went to milk and flavored water and it did give me that jump start I was looking for. By this point seeing that small change made me want more!! So I decided in-between shifts at the pool I would start by running a mile on the track. Then I thought, what if I would not eat after 7pm? So that’s what I did and wow the weight started falling off…but here is where a lot of ladies fall into that horrible pattern of thinking “wow I’m not eating and weight is coming off”. It was so bad for me to be doing but at that point I didn’t care. So I then found myself happy and feeling like I finally fit in…guys are noticing me…so I kept doing my thing but the kicker I wouldn’t eat in front of ANYONE!!! If I did I would nibble and say I was full I would eat alone and binge half the time…horrible horrible! The worst part is ladies, this went on for my last 2 years of high school!
Once it was time for college everything changed…I started drinking, eating out and not caring AGAIN so now I find myself back to the weight I hated myself at. Strangely I did nothing about it because I was having fun drinking and eating and having fun with friends! While at college I found myself hanging out with a certain guy who was a bad-boy with tattoos and dirt bikes, what girl doesn’t dream of that, right? Being with him all the time took me further into the drinking and and not caring about how I look. I stopped doing my hair, I lost all interest in working out and only did what he wanted to do!
I lost friends and family during this “fun time in my life” also….after this “amazing guy” proposed, I decided it was time to start working out and get ready for the wedding, so I would go do cardio for maybe 20 minutes, probably talking the whole time. Then I would go home and eat and drink, so my fitness game was just off. I had no idea what I was doing even though I told people I did. As much as this sucks to say, doing that didn’t help me lose weight for my wedding. Actually, I had to get my dress taken out as much as possible plus I had to get forced into the dress on my wedding day!! So uncomfortable! But, I didn’t care I just drank and forgot about it!!! Now looking back at that time ladies, I had no motivation and I also had no one pushing me to reach my goals but I was so blind to it!!
Fast forward 4 years I was finally out of the toxic relationship, but my bad choices didn’t stop. Ladies, yes I starved myself for 3 months!!! No food no water, my best friend would force me to eat or to even go out to do something. It got to the point that she said I scared her and she was so worried! With the no eating and now being single again attention was coming my way so I thought what would happen if I worked out? Would I lose more weight and be the skinny I always dreamed? So that’s what I did. Hardly ate, worked out and binge drank on the weekends with who ever would do it with me!!! And boom! I was at my lowest weight ever!!!!! I was loving life!!! And then ladies, yes I met the man of my dreams who pushed me to be the healthy active person I am today! Being with him and having fun I saw my body changing and felt I was heading back down towards gaining loads of weight so I asked him if I could follow a dream of mine and that was get a personal trainer and compete in my first fitness competition!! Of course he said yes and wanted me to follow my dream! Once I started with my trainer I found out I screwed my body up way more than I even thought!!!! All the yo-yo dieting, binge eating and drinking and killing myself destroyed my metabolism. I will tell you, fixing that is not easy and I will admit, it’s still not fixed and I am on year 2 with my trainer! However, Icrushed my goal and competed in my first competition and placed!!!
So this brings me to the point of my whole story is, ladies we love quick fixes when we want to be skinny, we want to be skinny NOW. But, that’s not real life…quick fixes actually destroy our bodies more than we could ever imagine! We need to treat our minds and bodies like they deserve to be treated and that’s with care…nourish your body with good healthy whole foods and realize fitness it’s a mental game and there are no quick fixes it’s a journey and a journey that will take you on many ups and downs but in the end all worth it!