"My fitness journey started in fall of 2014. I had attended a few therapy sessions because I was going through some mild depression, and my therapist and I decided I needed to put my negative energy into something positive. I had always wanted to compete, so prepping for a body building show seemed right.
I placed first in that show, and continued to compete for a few years. I grew to love the sport of bodybuilding; the dedication, the look, show day, all of the people you meet, it was great. But I had developed a cycle of prepping and binging, and come to find out, that was pretty common in the industry. Amateur competitors prep for months on end, are deprived of the flexibility of making whatever food choices they want in moderation, and then binge for 2 days post show. It was horrible and it was everywhere.
I struggled with being comfortable in my skin pretty frequently but in my head, I had to eat as much food as I could before starting another show and having to restrict.
In 2016, while receiving my undergrad in Psychology, I found the field of Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA), the science of human behavior, and fell in love. Back then I worked with kids who had Autism, implementing behavioral interventions that taught them a variety of life skills through reinforcement and environmental modifications (to name a couple interventions). It changed my world.
Come to find out, you can apply ABA to anything. Anyone who has gotten far along in this story is likely continuing because the behavior of reading and finding out more info is reinforcing, thats behavior analysis. I learned that I can apply this to health and fitness, and help change peoples health behaviors without them finding the idea of exercising more or eating healthier as a burden on their life. I rearrange their environment to best increase the likelihood of them engaging in health behaviors like making better nutrition choices, taking vitamins, mindful eating, and exercise, all areas I have targeted and improved in my own health journey.
In 2021 I graduated with my Master's of Science in Psychology specializing in ABA and opened my own coaching company, R+Wellness. I currently utilize behavior analysis to help my clients learn and maintain new habits like drinking more water, getting in more steps, hitting their macro goals, eating more fruits/veggies, and following a bedtime routing. I don't only help clients with their nutrition and fitness goals, but also use my psychology background to teach life skills, de-stressing, and self-management techniques. With me, mental health is just as important as physical health."