They say your attitude determines your direction…
My name is Casey Douglas, and I’m a self-proclaimed “fan” of fitness. But I haven’t always been. As a child, I was far more into chocolate Hostess cakes than I was into after-school activities, and my “health” wasn’t really something that was on my radar.
I did have one hobby, however: artistic gymnastics. You know, that sport involving floor, beam, bars, and vault (think Simone Biles, but way less awesome). I was a decent competitor and enjoyed gymnastics overall, but still, ironically, I quit because there was “too much conditioning.”
However, gymnastics gave me the empowering knowledge that my body was capable of strength and endurance.
My athleticism went into hibernation until I started high school and joined the cross country and track teams. This decision drove a physically and emotionally profitable career of running and I owe a great deal of gratitude to those 12 seasons of pavement pacing.
Right before I started school at Boston University, I began training at a boot camp facility, where I discovered weight lifting. Admittedly, I feared becoming “big” and “bulky,” but I fell passionately in love with the sport and the challenges that came with it, that those quickly became things that no longer scared me.
Now, my life is a conglomerate of these things. I am a girl whose heart is split between double-digit mileage runs and challenges that test my strength. I’ve found my home at Boston’s toughest boot camp, Beantown Bootcamp, where each day my passion for fitness continues to grow.
From the surface, my fitness journey may seem rather simple — a girl who has grown as an athlete as time has passed. However, I quickly learned that health is so much more than just the physical aspect and my body is meant for more than aesthetic.
When I was 9-years old, I stood next to other girls in gymnastics class and wondered why my legs touched one another while other girls legs did not. When I was 14, I felt thick as I ran amongst my tall, lanky competitors. And, as high school progressed, I found my self-disdain and disappointment grow larger.
In 11th grade, I crash dieted. I knew crash diets never work, yet I continued. Eventually, I began to cope with my sadness in the only way I knew how: with comfort food. This pattern continued until October 8th, 2014.
On that fateful day, after a night of compulsive overeating, I awoke with guilt, horrible stomach pains, and a sugar-hangover. In that moment, I knew that my lifestyle of emotional eating would perpetuate my cycle of low self-esteem and poor body image. Additionally, I knew that if I wanted to succeed, I needed to overhaul my negative attitude and rearrange my lifestyle. I needed to understand that those legs that may or may not touch, helped me run faster and jump higher.
I look back at the loneliness of my high school days and don’t recognize the person I was.
Now, I am 30-pounds lighter, eat nutritious foods, and enjoy treats in a blissful moderation. I find joy in pushing my body to accomplish new fitness feats. I focus more on what my body can do rather than what it looks like. And I work towards weight PRs instead of weight loss.
Boot camp gives me life and continuously lights up my mornings. I am happy, whole, and in love with the fit lifestyle I lead. And I am honored to join Fit University, a place that celebrates each individual’s unique journey.
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