I've been involved with athletics my entire life. As a kid, I kept active playing sports and games in the neighborhood. Eventually, my focus became running. I did not have a focus on diet for the majority of my career. The motto was always to "carbo load" by slamming pasta and any other carbs. My intake included a lot of processed carbs and sugars. This seemed to work for me until I reached the collegiate level where the competition was steeper and my body began to react differently.
My first issue was weight control. I had discovered the wonders of all you can eat cafeteria food, Ben and Jerry's, and late night pizza binges. My belief was that running would keep things in check. While my weight stayed at a healthy range, I was a bit overweight for a distance runner. I was also feeling weak at times and having difficulties handling my training workload. My excuse was that my body just wasn't made to handle high mileage training.
After college, I began to experience GI issues. I struggled with cramping and bloating. My job kept me busy and gave me an excuse to never cook for myself. I was still training, but not competing. My training volumes had remained the same since college. It became nearly impossible to run at times. I couldn't understand why. It was time to get help if I wanted to continue my running career.
I contacted Kylene for her opinion. She was able to help me pinpoint the potential causes for my pains. I always tried to keep a healthy diet, but I was not monitoring my fat, sodium and sugar intake. Vegetables and lean proteins became a focus. I also learned the importance of meal timing and how composition of the meal really mattered, especially before practice and meets. I also put limits on dairy and gluten intake. Over the course of a few months I was able to resolve my GI issues. My weight is at a healthy level for competing and I feel less bloated. I also set new personal best times for 1500 meters, 5000 meters, 8000 meters and finished my first half marathon pain free. I am traveling overseas to compete in a few months and now that my fueling strategies are in order, I anticipate this being my best performance yet!