Stories

COULD I DO HEALTH WITHOUT THE LITTLE GREEN JUICE?

Caitie, 24, spent many years figuring out what “healthy” means to her. This year, she’s determined to help others find their own “healthy,” beyond measurements and scales.

Redefining New Year’s resolutions is really important to me. It’s not about juice cleanses and diets. We live in a culture that can make great things like group fitness, eating healthy or yoga unhealthy. Looking at the New Year, I love the idea of starting all over, but I don’t like “New Year, new you.” We don’t need to be “new” — we should already think we are enough.

Growing up as a teenager, I struggled with OCD, anxiety, depression and anorexia. I worked with many mental health professionals to pull myself out of it but found myself becoming obsessed with being healthy.

When I was in school as an undergrad studying applied psych, I started thinking what tangible tools can I provide to mental wellbeing. There’s fitness, yoga, and eating healthy, but something I realized is that we don’t approach these tools in a healthy way. We think we’re not working out enough if we’re not burning calories, or we shouldn’t eat carbs.

I founded my nonprofit, F. I. T. 4 All, with the mission of bringing free fitness classes to various locations in New York City. It doesn’t need to be expensive or extravagant, but we do need to talk about what wellness means to the communities we are delivering these programs to. We need to support individuals in honoring intuition for what fitness feels for them, personally. My background in applied psych and nutrition studies helps me tackle the issue and figure out the best way to integrate wellness into our lives.

F. I. T. 4 All is a project I’m passionate about — it gives me energy and makes me happy. But when it begins to wear me out, I will take a step back. I need to prioritize my own self-care, and it took me a long time to accept this. I’m still a grad student and I need to take my boards this summer to certify. I’m still teaching a few fitness classes a week for money.

It’s all about setting boundaries for myself, like only checking emails on certain days, for example, or listening to podcasts like “Good Life Project” when I have spare time.

This January, I want to help people set resolutions that are sustainable and body positive, and implement them in a way that is not too serious. I want people to start by realizing they are already enough, and these tools help them bring a better vision of themselves.

It starts with loving yourself.

Join F. I. T 4 All January 19 for a free community event that will include fun panels, movement classes, food and honest discussions. For more information, click here.

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