Grab A Snack, You're In For a Long One!

Monday, March 23, 2015

Health and fitness is something that I often talk about here on the blog. It is something that I try to take very seriously in my life. And although I talk about it quite often, I don't usually talk about the reasons behind my health and fitness goals.

I often wanted to talk about why I set health goals but never really had the courage to tell my health story. It's not that bad, but it's personal. So I put it off and I put it off until the #AuthenticateChallenge was to tell your story. So I decided it was finally time to tell my story.

So my story starts in college. My first few years of college were absolutely wonderful. It took me a few weeks to adjust to the college life, but for the most part I had an amazing time. I made a ton of new friends and just experienced the college life.

My sophomore year, I started noticing some changes in myself. Instead of being the happy bubbly girl I was all through high school and my freshman year, I was dull. Normal things didn't make me happy. I never wanted to hang out with my friends.

Eventually I went to the school psychologist and she tried to help, but more often than not I came away feeling worse than when I went in. I would sit at the dinner table and be there, but not be able to focus on the conversation. I remember feeling like I was in my own world. Like nobody cared about me and like nobody could help me.

I eventually broke down and started talking to my friend who was a psych major who's mom also had problems similar to mine. She was the biggest help I had. I finally felt like she understood me... She suggested I go to my regular doctor and talk to him about what was going on.

I was diagnosed with depression and although we couldn't figure out what caused me to get depression, I started taking medication. Finally I was able to feel better. I felt more like myself. I enjoyed doing things and hanging out with friends again.

But soon after the depression got better, I began to gain weight. Just a little at first, you know?! Enough to make you think you shrunk your jeans in the dryer. But then my family began to notice it to. I didn't know what to do. I started trying to exercise more. I went for jogs but eventually that started hurting my leg, so I would walk. At one point I was walking a 10k three times a week, plus walking to my classes. Nothing was helping.

I eventually went back to my doctor and requested he do a thyroid test. My mom has hypothyroidism and started to see the signs. I had gained weight, I was constantly complaining of being cold, my hair was falling out like crazy... it just all added up.

After a few weeks of waiting to confirm it and finally start on medicine, I was diagnosed with hypothyroidism at the age of 20. Even though my depression had gotten better, I started feeling bad again. I was going to be dependent on this little pill for the rest of my life. Why was this happening to me. All the while, I was steadily gaining weight.

By the time that I had figured out what was going on and gotten my medicine to take, I couldn't hardly stand to look at myself in the mirror. My face was so round and I couldn't wear any of my clothes anymore. I had gained 40 pounds and couldn't wait to drop it!

I'm still on the road to getting my body back to where it used to be. I'm still not the size I was when I was a freshman, but that's why I constantly write posts about health and fitness. I want to stay motivated to fit back into my size 3 and 5 jeans.

If y'all made it all the way through my story, I want to thank you. Thanks for reading all of it, and thanks for your support on all of my health and fitness posts.


  1. You are gorgeous any way at all!

  2. Just remember that you are beautiful both inside and out. I thank you for sharing your story because it does take courage to be open and transparent like that. You are amazing!

  3. Wow, Ashley! Thank you for sharing your story with everyone! You are so brave! I think it is so important to share the things we struggle with and how we overcome them because so many others need to know they aren't alone! I am proud of you for using your blog as a platform to share your story! Also, I love your fitness posts!

  4. Girl I know how you feel! I was just diagnosed with PCOS a few months ago and it explains so much about my body. My sister is so tiny and even my mom was able to drop all of her extra weight within a matter of weeks, but for some reason I just couldn't get my body in shape. Now that I have a diagnoses and am being treated, I am trying hard to get myself down to wear I should be.

    Good luck to you! I am so encouraged to see your fitness posts, it helps me stay motivated too :)

  5. Thank you for sharing this story! I love your health and fitness posts and it's awesome to see the motivation behind them. You are gorgeous no matter what!

  6. Thank you Elizabeth! You don't know how much that means to me!

  7. Thanks Jen! I was very nervous to share this. I hate looking at pictures of myself at that point in my life, but I know they are great motivation to not go back there.

  8. Thanks Chelsie! Reading many of your posts helped me have the courage to post mine. I realize what I went through was nothing like you, but we all have some kind of struggle in our lives. And if I am able to help one person who struggles with weight issues, then I feel like I've done something rewarding.

  9. Thank you Livia! It means so much to me that I can help other people stay motivated and encouraged to achieve their goals!

  10. Thank you Shannon! I was super nervous about posting it, but I should have realized I have such a supportive group of blog friends that it wouldn't matter!

  11. So glad doctors figured out what was going on so that you can control it!! :)