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I am 23 and work at GNC. I graduated last year from the University of Oregon with a Bachelor’s in vocal performance and music. I’m the oldest child in my family and we are all pretty tall. I’m 5’11 and an ectomorph with a super fast metabolism. That plays into why I got into fitness and how it’s impacted my life and why I love it.

Throughout my whole life I have struggled with gaining weight and the health issues that come with that. Even though I ate super healthy and good amounts people still thought I was slightly anorexic and I definitely got sick way easier and it was all just a mess. That time in my life was pretty dark in the way I just couldn’t figure out how to be completely whole and I was just getting worn out and didn’t want to quit entirely, but didn’t really have a lot of motivation to keep trying. I’ve tried different medications and ways, but none really worked for me so one day as a freshman in college I decided to start going to the gym and weight lifting. That is my favorite type of workouts. I love being able to lift heavy things.

I have worked out seriously then for about 4 and a half years now and have noticed such improvement in both my physical and mental health. I no longer get sick as easily and am way less stressed. I also was able to over these past years put on about 30 lbs. of pure muscle mass. I’m still tiny, but definitely different looking than before. Fit tiny not anorexic tiny. My major in college was very stressful too so being able to take my stress and frustrations out at the gym was a mental release for me.

So to answer your question about what I really love about it…. I’d have to say I love that it’s my time. It’s the time during the day that I cut out specifically for me. For bettering myself physically and emotionally. You don’t really get to do that any other time throughout the day. I’ve also met some amazing people and some not amazing people in the fitness world so it’s given me a perspective on that as well. I really enjoy now using what I learn to help other people. That’s why I really enjoy working at GNC because I can talk to people and listen to their stories and share mine. I’ve enjoyed the process of finding out that fitness is always an upward journey if you have the drive to continue. I have found my motivation as well. It has definitely helped my character as well… I’m really glad I walked into that gym when I did 4 years ago!

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