Amy Lynn Burns
I was a thin and active child. I loved bike riding, tree climbing, and especially swimming. My weight problem started around the age of 13 when I started doing teenage things like sitting around talking on the phone for hours. I steadily grew bigger over the years. I don’t remember being aware of my weight until age 18 or 19. I had other things on my mind and didn’t care what I looked like. Somewhere along the like I had missed the message American culture works into the minds of most young girls. I didn’t have an ideal of what beauty must be; no belief that you had to be thin or have perfect skin or gorgeous hair. I have no regrets about this, but I think it explains how I let myself get so overweight. I just wasn’t aware.After meeting the love of my life, my weight creeped even higher. We loved to eat, drink, watch movies and unfortunately, physical activities weren’t high priority for us. There were a few dieting attempts and some unused gym memberships, but no real change happened. Inevitably I started to become unhappy with myself. I was getting out of breath going up stairs. I had to shop in plus size clothing sections. I made excuses when friends invited me on active pursuits like hiking. I would sometimes have to take Tylenol for knee pain. And I got discouraged with the failed attempts at dieting. At age 25 I weighed 262 pounds (at 5'8") After a heart to heart with my doctor I realized that my weight problem was just that: my problem. I caused it, and only I can change it. I took responsibility for my life and decided to DO something.I've lost 50 pounds by diet and exercise alone and kept it off! In March 2006 I walked my first 5k and 3 years later I did my first triathlon. I’ve done 5 triathlons now (one of which was a half iron distance) and 3 half marathons and many other walking events. I've done the Iron Girl 5k with my mom for 4 years now, and you'll be amazed at the difference in our pics from '06 to '10! And I'm still going!!!