Happy Friday! Today's feature Friday comes from Amber Boyd, she has a story that hits close to home with me and is the other side of the weight loss journey, battling an eating disorder. Through her story you will find what a fighter Amber is and how you can make the decision to become healthy no matter where you are in your life. We are all going though our own journey and our own struggles, but we are never alone.
Amber shares her story with us:
88 pounds, this was me at my lowest point in the disease that almost took away everything...even my life. In anorexia, we know our weight. Some people who are looking to lose weight for other reasons often know a general number, but we know ours down to our last ounce. There is no magic number we're looking for. There might be at first. Then it just becomes an obsession to become the smallest and to see the scale decrease every day (sometimes more than once a day). Trying to keep up with that obsession became so tiring mentally that I had no time for anything else, but food. Forget that I had a family (3 children, one recently born and a fiance), it was all about me and the desire to be so thin so that you could see through to my bones.
I was also in the midst of an emotionally abusive relationship. Hearing the words, "you're helpless, hopeless, worthless, stupid, weird" on a daily basis, I began to believe it. Sinking into depression and choosing 'Ana' over everyone and everything became my scapegoat. 'Ana' listened to me. She knew how to make it all go away. I had mastered the skill at losing weight because it was my only goal, the only thing to live for.
Once a fitness professional, mother, daughter, sister and friend, I cut out all that were close to me, even my children. I quit my job as a personal trainer because I was told that I didn't look the part. I became selfish and compulsive in that I had to walk at least 8 miles if not more daily and in the dead heat of Arizona so that I could sweat as as many calories off as possible. I would come home drenched and covered in salt crystals because I was losing nutrients.
Nothing sacred me about being at such a low weight. Even having to go to the emergency room numerous times...nothing was shaking me. The moment of realization as to what had been happening in my life for the last 2 years in 'Ana' (almost a dreamlike state), came suddenly. It's hard for me to describe what exactly happened, but I WOKE UP. I had missed my newborns' firsts (sitting up, crawling, walking, etc.), even though my body was there physically, I wasn't there mentally. My fiance at the time was looking to move. I was going to be taken away from my family and everything that I had built for myself in Arizona. I know that if I let this happen, I would fall deeper into depression, continue to lose weight and essentially...die. That wasn't the goal. Dying was not part of the plan-although it seemed to be the oly way out. I had to take massive action and quickly!
I gathered what was left of me and made a plan to escape from the abusive relationship. It took everything I had, but it had to be done. I placed an order of protection against the man that once loved me so much and I had loved back. He was removed from our home, and that's when the true test came into play. I had to rebuild everything on my own. The strength to just end it all was the most challenging. Ending an eating disorder, ending a relationship and ending the fight to begin another battle; survival.
Though I never received professional help, I made it on my own. Today, weighing in at around 105 pounds, I still struggle. 'Ana' is a mental disease and it will always be there in the back of my mind. Although the battle is won, it is far from over. BUT, now I am dying to live, instead of living to die.
If you, or suspect someone else, is going through this silent killer, please seek help! You are not alone and you can overcome the obstacles that play within your mind.
Amber has been in the fitness industry for 8 years and is certified through NASM as a Certified Personal Trainer, Corrective Exercise Specialist, Sports Nutrition Specialist and Master Trainer. She is also a certified speed specialist and published author for National Association of Speed and Explosion (NASE). Amber is an ambassador for YMX by Yellowman, FitMark Bags and Sweat Pink. She is the founder and CEO of Physiqu-ED, and she focuses on more than just personal training she also strives to educate. She has an extreme passion for fitness and helping to save people's lives. She is a success story and an inspiration to many.
For more info about Amber or her work here are her links: