Our Friendship Story
We first met in high school. While we say “in high school” – we actually went to different (rival!) schools in the same hometown. We both became Candy Stripers at a local hospital, which is how we came to be friends. Though we volunteered on different days, we participated in events and the “Candy Striper Council” (a board made up of each shift’s supervisor and assistant supervisor) as well as the Execute Council (Andrea was even President of the Candy Stripers!) We both gave many hours of our time and had quite a lot of fun. Yep, this is us!
We both graduated in the class of 1997 from our respective high schools and went off to college – Lindsay to Morningside College (initially) and Andrea to the University of Nebraska at Lincoln. We lost touch, as those things go, and each went about our separate lives. You can read more about those in each of our “About Me” sections, but since this part is about “Us” let’s get to our reunion. Several years ago we were reunited through the magical wonder of the internet. One may think we had sought each other out on Myspace or Facebook, but we actually ran into each other quite by accident. We each had a “hey…I think I know you” moment, and from then on we grew to be great friends once again. Despite all of our years apart, and our locations 1000 miles apart, we found that we had many things in common. We were both in the midst of a transformation and embracing a healthy lifestyle. Together, we have lost a combined 200 pounds. We have run miles and miles, lifted thousands of pounds, practiced hundreds of asana. We have seen each other through a separation, a divorce, a life-changing surgery, and plenty of fun things too!
I live in Iowa with my husband and one spoiled Weimaraner. I received a B.A. in Literary Studies from Iowa State University, and I currently work in academics. I was never athletic or mindful of my health or diet. I was always the “chubby” kid in a time when most kids were thin (unlike now). I excelled in academics and loathed gym class. After graduation, I attended a small liberal arts college for a year and decided it wasn’t the place for me. I completed a year, but didn’t go back. Instead I took two years off school and worked in a bakery. I immersed myself in learning about food, and took full advantage of gratis meals and day-old bread. I grew up in the kitchen with my mom and grandmas – I remember one year my mom was hosting Thanksgiving at our house, I must have been about 8 or 9 years old, and I made her promise to wake me up in the morning when she got up to put the turkey in and start cooking – well before 6 a.m. When I awoke to the smell of food cooking I was so upset! She had let me sleep.
By the year 2005, the year of my wedding, I had ballooned to over 200 pounds.
I avoided weighing myself for a period of about three years, but on October 31, 2006, the day I met the personal trainer who would help me change my life, I weighed in at 234. I became vegetarian at first, and through diet modifications and a fitness routine, I eventually lost about 90 pounds. Early in 2009 I became vegan, relaxed my workouts a little more to consist mostly of interval cardio, jogging, and yoga.
I have a bum knee and a painful bone growth on my right foot that I probably need to get removed, but despite this, I hope to complete some races in 2010.
I live in Tuscaloosa, Alabama with my two tuxedo cats (yes, I’m that crazy cat lady). I got my BA from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln and my MA from New Mexico State University (both in Communication Studies). I work full time at a law firm and I also teach public speaking and various communication studies courses at night at the local community college. I am fortunate enough to love both jobs and I’m grateful for that. I enjoy the single life and I’m just waiting for my half orange…I’m trying to be patient, but it’s hard! ha
Unlike Lindsay, I was athletic when I was younger. I played a ton of sports and I was really good at them. But, I stopped playing sports and I went from 152 pounds in 8th grade to 208 pounds in 9th grade. I joined theater and just simply became the funny awkward fat friend. See below.
I got married and eventually ballooned to well over 270+ pounds. I lost a few pounds here and there. Like Lindsay, my permanent healthy lifestyle came in 2006 (May), when I started at 244 pounds. I started with at home videos, then worked my way to step aerobics classes and eventually started personal training. I now actively engage in Crossfit (my primary form of exercise), running, and yoga. I love exercise and thrive at it! I am also a vegetarian and I enjoy learning about different healthy lifestyles. I love to cook and bake, but Lindsay is really the go-to person here for that! haha! I have a huge interest in beauty products and I’m mildly obsessed with all things make-up related!
In December 2009 I had an insurance approved tummy tuck (removing 8 pounds of loose skin, 8 inches off my waist, 4 inches off my hips), and while I was under, got my boobs lifted all perky and nice. I’m currently down at least 112+ pounds. My goal is to lose about 20 more pounds, but I’m not in any hurry…and if it doesn’t happen, I’m okay with that…
Here are two before/after pictures of my surgery (taken December 13, 2009 and then on January 9, 2010):
I recently (August 2010) started following a vegan diet and so far, so good. I also document my CrossFit experience over at my personal CrossFit blog and youtube page. I’m starting to think my niche in the blog world will be to demonstrate how one can be fit, strength train, and follow a vegan diet. We’ll see though…
I am not interested in being thin. I want to be fit, healthy, and athletic, and I’m happy to share this blog with my great friend Lindsay, who is full of more health knowledge than anyone I know…yay us!