Hi There! I wanted to share my story with you and the reason for starting FitFoods with Claire. The picture on left is me a few years ago. I am a single mom, worked a lot of hours at my job, and was trying to keep up with all my teenage daughter’s activities. I neglected to take care of myself. We ate out at restaurants a lot, got take out when there wasn’t time to cook, and when I cooked it was usually unhealthy, overly processed meals. Soon afterwards I learned I had diabetes. I decided I didn’t want to live with the health risks that diabetics are prone to so I began to eat clean, exercise, and incorporate healthy changes into my lifestyle. Within one year, I had lost 30 lbs and I had reversed my diabetes and that makes me happy!
Now, at age 42, I feel better than I ever have and I have a completely different relationship with food. I use food to nourish my body and my soul, to stay healthy and fit, help fuel my workouts, and give me the energy to do everything I want to. I don’t diet or restrict myself from the foods I love to eat, and I don’t take any supplements or vitamins. I get all my nutrients through my food and I have found that I have more energy than ever plus I almost never get sick. I eat mostly real, whole, unprocessed food. I try to eat organic whenever possible to reduce the amount of toxins and chemicals I put into my body. Also, I love to eat food that tastes good! So instead of adding tons of salt, butter, and sugar to my food, I use different herbs and spices which enhance the flavor of foods. They also add health benefits. For example, since I have diabetes, I cook with cinnamon, cumin, and ginger, all of which help to lower my blood sugar levels. As a Korean American, I love to eat Korean dishes as well as many other types of ethnic foods. I love the unique flavors that people from all around the world use to cook their foods. I have learned to incorporate many of these flavors into my own recipes, often adapting them and substituting my own favorite ingredients.
I generally follow a healthy lifestyle and stay pretty active, but I find that only through proper nutrition, eating clean and making time to meal prep each week, I can feel and look my best. I have a passion for cooking and creating new recipes, some of which I’ve posted on my website here. Another passion of mine is helping others by teaching them how to meal prep for success. Eating healthy is easier when you start planning. They say, “Failing to plan is planning to fail” and it’s so true! I have recently started up FitFoods with Claire, a healthy meal prep service which services the Northern VA area. Menu items such as low carb crab cakes, salmon burgers, and spicy soba noodle salad are always a hit and I even offer custom meal prep for people looking for an individualized diet plan. Visit my website www.fitfoodswithclaire.com to order your meals. I also offer nutrition coaching for people who are looking to get healthier.
After being diagnosed with diabetes, I knew I had to start exercising. I tried just about everything from spinning classes, kick boxing, Zumba, even hot yoga. But I fell in love with lifting and I started training for fitness competitions. I compete in fitness competitions as a way to motivate me. If someone told me years ago that I would be competing on stage in a figure competition, I would have thought they were crazy! But after a lot of hard work and discipline, I am proud of what I have accomplished and will continue to find new ways to challenge myself.
By 2050, 1 in 3 Americans will develop type 2 diabetes. It’s never too late to change your lifestyle. Start eating healthy and exercising more. You have to love yourself in order to love others so be kind to yourself, eat well, and enjoy life!