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Meeee :)

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Biking in the Rockies, August 2012, about 183 pounds

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Summit Graduation, April 2012, close to my highest weight of 203

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My name is Ashley. I'm a 25 year-old second year nursing student and Bible college graduate who loves Jesus. I'm looking to lose weight, and become fit and healthier.

In June 2012, I had brain surgery to remove a benign tumor (acoustic neuroma). The surgery was successful, but it did cause temporary nerve damage. This damage has affected my swallowing and speech and paralyzed the right side of my face. I am also permanently deaf in my right ear.

The doctors told me that my expected recovery time would be three months. Meaning, that I would be basically feeling back to normal within three months, except for the facial paralysis, which may take up to a year to fully be restored. The surgery was four years ago. I wouldn't say that I am 100% better, but I'm pretty close. My facial paralysis is maybe 80% better and I'm adjusting to being deaf in one ear. I'm also learning to live with the chronic headaches I've had for 6 years. However, I'm still battling physical issues and fatigue.God is soooo good!! God gave me promises of healing before my surgery, and I thought this meant He was going to heal my tumor supernaturally. He didn't do that, and I was confused. But now I see He's done a much deeper physical healing. He did use the doctors to remove the tumor, yes. And He's caused my to have a very fast recovery and bounce back quickly, yes. But also during this time, my lifestyle completely changed. It's always been a HUGE struggle to change my eating habits and to work out. Yet after my surgery, there was a complete paradigm shift, and I don't even know how it happened. I changed. Completely. And it was all God. I'm not saying it's easy. It's not. But I know that I know that God changed me. I didn't change myself. I've tried for so long to do this, and now finally, when I was at my weakest point, God did it. When I was tired and in pain and the dieticians were even telling me to eat unhealthy food (I ate very slowly, so they told me to eat high calorie, soft food like mashed potatoes with lots of butter and gravy...sigh, but that's a rant for another time LOL), God did it. When I had all the excuses in the world to not work out and to eat unhealthy, God changed me. Praise God!!

Shortly after my surgery, I took up running, something I was never able to do. Six months after my surgery, I ran my first 5K.

So I experienced a lot of amazing changes after my surgery. I lost enough weight that I got down to 145, got in shape, ran a 5k. But then slowly, I stopped exercising, and the weight crept back on. Stress, as well as inattention to my health, contributed to this. I am now 230 pounds, and pretty out of shape, but I am determined to get back to a healthy lifestyle, weight, and fitness level.

Member Since: 5/11/2010

Fitness Minutes: 2,661

My Goals:
1.) To develop a healthier lifestyle
2.) Lose 85 pounds

My Program:
I wrote this a few years ago when I first lost a lot of weight, and my goal is to go back to eating this way:

I eat 75-90% vegan, and the rest of the time vegetarian with the rare occasion of eating meat. I originally became vegan along with my parents, after we watched "Forks Over Knives". This documentary convinced us that it is much more healthful to eat a plant-based diet. We don't freak out over small things like eggs in a cookie, for example, or eating turkey at thanksgiving. However, we've stopped buying chicken, beef, pork, eggs, and milk completely at home. We still consume a moderate amount of fish and a very small amount of cheese. Reading "The China Study" further convinced me that limiting the amount of animal protein and eating a plant-based diet is the way to go.

I originally didn't go vegan because of animal welfare. I don't believe there's anything ethically wrong with eating animals. That being said, however, I believe that the way mainstream indust

Personal Information:
I am from Canada.
I am 25 years old.
I am a Christian, a follower of Jesus.

Other Information:

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 current weight: 177.3 
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    TIA emoticon
    2941 days ago
  • v KELLY122581
    Hey! How's it going? Haven't seen you around in a few days - everything OK?
    3008 days ago
    We seem to have similar weight loss goals. Looking forward to seeing you around,
    3072 days ago
    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

    Welcome and thank you for joining the "Spring into Summer" challenge!! We are happy to have you apart of our spark family. Together we will work towards our healthy goals with fun challenges, support, and plenty motivation. Please stop by to introduce yourself to the team. Once again thank you for joining and we wish you well.

    Team Leader

    3459 days ago