Competitive runner Wendy Lynch felt confident with her health and lifestyle choices for years. She ate well and exercised often. Then, in the fall of 2015, she underwent foot surgery and her active lifestyle came to a grinding halt. As she watched her health decline and her indulgences grow more frequent, she knew her old habits were no longer working for her, and it was time to make a change.
Q: A number of people who take part in my 28-Day Cleanse & Detox program are looking to change long-standing bad habits, but you’ve considered your lifestyle a healthy one until recently. What changed?
A: Yes, I have always had a very active lifestyle and managed to keep my weight comfortable by exercising regularly. Being a competitive runner for years has been a major help. But in November 2015 I had foot surgery, and went from running 25-30 miles per week plus cross-training to doing absolutely nothing for ten weeks. I also had the surgery the day before Thanksgiving, and holiday time is when eating is what we all do. It was downhill from there.
Q: Were there other factors that kept you from your normal routine?
A: Between the holidays, the frustration of rehabilitation, and the reality of where I was going to end up with my ability to be a distance runner again, it all led me to a difficult time emotionally. Top it off with the beginning stages of menopause—need I say more?
Q: What was your wake-up call?
A: Despite a good diet and medication keeping my naturally high cholesterol in check, my HDL was still higher than I wanted it to be, and I knew I was headed in the wrong direction at a time in my life when it needed to be better. Having been able to maintain my weight easily and indulge when I wanted to had been a gift, but it was no longer something I could rely on to take good care of myself.
Q: You’ve mentioned volleying back and forth about joining my detox class in the past. What made you finally decide to commit?
A: I’ve been receiving your newsletters and information on the program for a while now, and I’ve thought it over many times. I knew there was an upcoming session for the 28-Day Cleanse & Detox program, and I teased myself with it: do it, don’t do it, do it. But on the evening prior to the first session, I went to a CrossFit class and saw an acquaintance who had just enrolled in a detox program. He said he needed to lose some weight and that last year he had lost 22 pounds on it. When he told me he took it with Loryn Galardi in Wilton, of course I knew the name! I went home that evening and sent the email and there you were, telling me it was okay to join in. I made the commitment that night. Years of training for races has taught me to never take a commitment lightly, so if I say I am going to do it, I do it.
Q: What were some of the challenges you faced when you first started the program?
A: All my life I’ve been a grazer—never a three-meal-a-day girl. Planning ahead was tough for me because of that, but now that I’ve been doing it, the rewards make it so worth it. Restructuring my meals and using food as fuel for my body in the right way has taught me such a valuable lesson. I even enjoy meal planning now.
Q: What were some of those rewards?
A: Never a good sleeper, I now sleep like a baby. My night sweats are gone, my mood swings are non-existent, and my energy level is to a point where I don’t know what to do with it all! I have lost some weight—I had more to lose than I wanted to believe. My confidence is up and I feel good when I get dressed in the morning—something I carry with myself throughout the day. I am so grateful for this opportunity and your guidance in learning a healthier, enjoyable lifestyle that really fits with my way of thinking, eating habits, and personality.
Q: What did you learn about yourself while making these lifestyle changes?
A: I know now that I cannot have that first treat, such is the nature of my sugar habit. I need to be very disciplined about my indulgences as I know how easy I can fall back on old, bad habits. The program gave me the right mindset and alternatives to help me stay on track.
Q: What were your biggest takeaways from the program?
A: I’ve taken away far more from the program than I had ever anticipated, including a change in my eating habits. Picky, picky, picky was my style before—I was a chicken-and-salad girl. No seafood, minimal meat. Now, I’ve learned the art of creating a meal that is healthy, tasty, filling, and most of all fulfilling on all the other levels we look for in food. I also learned how reliant I was on “my” food for comfort, stress relief, anxiety, anger, and frustration. Detaching from that has been a healthy exercise for me. Thank you for all your input, guidance, and professionalism during the program. This experience has been a true eye opener for me on so many levels!