Let’s take a journey, loved ones.
Don’t mind that beardy guy. The other person in the picture, the lady? That’s me. In case you’re interested in more than just what I look like glowing from Great American Beer Festival-fueled joy, read on….
I am a 2009 graduate of the University of North Carolina – Chapel Hill with a B.A. in Psychology with a Sexuality Studies minor, and after living, working, enjoying craft beer in the Triangle for three years, I migrated to Philadelphia for grad school at the University of Pennsylvania. Since then, I’ve graduated and begun working at a local hospital.
When I arrived at UNC, I joined the fencing team and was a varsity athlete for a year and a half. That’s me below, in the knickers with a tiny girl on my lap, biting my nails:
Unfortunately, my thirst for the bloodsport faded fast when I realized how little I was getting from my team and membership on it for the amount of time I was putting into it. I quit the team, joined a co-ed fraternity at UNC, and, shortly after that, met the most important people of my college career.
These were my best friends, and I was happy as a clown. However, with the parties, the late night pizza and nachos (and POKEY STICKS MMmmmmm) I went from a fit fencer to a plump partygirl.
In May 2009, I graduated college, excited to join the workforce as a young professional, and drove up to PA to spend a week with my family before jumping into the real world. Within TEN MINUTES of getting home (zero exaggeration, I work fast), I broke my fifth metatarsel on my left foot. Oh, great. That serious injury led me to collect two new friends (aka my crutches).
The location of my job (centrally located between a Hardees, a Taco Bell, a Wendy’s, a Jimmy Johns, two chinese places, Burger King, McDonalds, and no less than THREE froyo spots), combined with my limited mobility and EXTREME lack of motivation to cook for myself led to quite a few other new friends (namely, about 20 lbs). My lowest weight measured in college was about 180ish, whilst on the fencing team, and at this point, I ballooned up to 215 (or more, that was just my first measured weight when I decided to finally brave the scale.)
I was not very happy with my body and was not pleased with the life I was living. In March 2010, I started Weight Watchers with all the females of my mom’s side of the family, and, while they started dropping like flies from the program, the weight started flying off. I started walking to the market about once a day, walking turned into a little bit of jogging to pick up vegetables and lean proteins, and then, as if by fate, Groupon had a deal on a gym membership right by my house. It was meant to be, and my life felt more balanced than ever before.
I made a commitment to myself, then and there, to do my best to get out of the “nearly obese” BMI to a normal range. I started attending classes at the gym, fell in LOVE with the Les Mills classes including Body Pump, Body Attack, Body Jam, and Body Combat with the occasional Zumba or elliptical day thrown in there. Last I checked, I clocked in at 174 (down over 40 lbs from my initial weigh in), I eat more greens/vegetables than ever before, I rarely eat fast food (
unless TOTALLY called for like road trips or… extreme urges), and no longer feel guilty when I consume tasty things like candy or ice cream. Oh, and more importantly, beers.
Living in North Carolina, I fell in love with the world of craft beers and the community that surrounds them. Beer people are basically my favorite people. When I moved to Philly, I was nervous to leave my tightly knit crew of the best beer folks I know, but I’ve slowly been making my way into the Philly beer and food scene. And with Belgian beer cafes, beer gardens galore, and a delicious reach of many fantastic breweries from around the world well….. beer this good, the people have gotta be around, right?
OH and to explain the name:
I wanted to play off blood, sweat, and tears. Only I’d rather not cry…. and NO ONE MAKES ME BLEED MY OWN BLOOD! also, food is much more enjoyable than blood.