Meet Tara!

Name:  Tara Bellamy

Age:  32

What led you to flexible eating/Flex Fuel?: 

After running my first marathon in May 2019,  I felt lost on how to fuel my body. During marathon training, I was constantly hungry, while expending a ton of energy through all the miles.  I upped my portions, proteins, and carbs to try to keep up with my performance… but realized I had no idea what I was doing and did not feel confident in knowing enough about nutrition. I ate healthy and knew the importance of a high protein diet, but never counted calories before or knew what macro tracking was all about. So when I made the decision to run another marathon in October 2019, I had about 6 months to really focus on my nutritional intake. I turned to Flex Fuel to help guide me. At the time, my goal was to gain more education and knowledge around nutrition for improved distance running performance.  I ended up setting a PR (finishing 3 minutes faster than my previous marathon).

Once my second marathon was over, I asked Flex Fuel to help me get tone for an upcoming Caribbean vacation my husband and I were taking (December 2019).  Katy helped me adjust my macros slowly and I was able to see physique changes pretty quickly.

What do you do to stay active?:  

I love to mix up my workouts!  I do a local barre class once a week, strengthening 2-3 times a week, and run 3-4 days per week. Being consistent with just showing up is my motto! I now have incredible accountability partners and some amazing friendships.

What has been your biggest challenge through this process so far and how did you overcome it?

The biggest challenge for me was figuring out how to hit my macros while on vacation and during travel (airplane) days when food options are limited. For example, we went to Hawaii for 10 days in August 2019 to visit my brother.  Our AirBnB didn’t work out last minute, so we ended up getting a hotel for the trip, which changed our meal set-up. All meals were out at restaurants.

Knowing this, I did my best to come prepared: packed a container of protein powder, collagen proteins, multiple protein bars and other plant based bars. I also tried to plan out our next days meals the night before, so I had an idea of the restaurants /fruit smoothie spots we would be hitting up. Then I check out menus and input some items into MFP the night prior. Once I got a hang of it, it didn’t take much time at all. Not every day was perfect, but overall I felt pretty consistent with hitting my numbers.

What has been your biggest success through this process so far?

My biggest success was seeing my body transform in a short period of time (within 7 months) based on my set macros… such as my body feeling really strong at the starting line for the marathon (in October), while also feeling extremely healthy and strong with a more toned physique during the start of our Caribbean vacation (in December).  Flex Fuel helped me accomplish both of my goals!

What do you like most about the flexible eating process?

I had never ate so many carbs in my life! I always thought of carbs as “bad” foods and ate a low carb diet from as long as I can remember, so when Katy increased my carbs significantly and lowered healthy fats, I was VERY apprehensive to the program, but just trusted the process. I slowly realized my body appreciated the carbs AND learned carbs are life. I never felt guilty in what I ate, as long as I hit my numbers.

What is your favorite treat to fit into your macros?

My favorite treat is Trader Joe’s dark chocolate covered coffee beans.  The best little afternoon pick-me-up to get through the rest of my work day.

What’s your favorite macro hack?  

Eating a high protein heavy breakfast. For example, I have 2 scoops of Collagen protein mixed in my cup of joe, then top off the cup with half a Premier Protein Shake. I’d have that in addition to frying two eggs over easy (often adding spinach or onion) and 1-2 pieces of Sprouted Dave’s Killer Bread. By the time I finished breakfast I’ve already consumed around 50 grams of protein.

I typically consume the other half of the protein shake after work, again used as creamer in my afternoon coffee (which adds another 15 grams of protein to my day).

What do you like most about having a nutrition coach?  

Having a nutrition coach forced me stay accountable each week! From the coaching, I kept my foods in check, tracked daily, and checked in with Katy weekly (via email or phone call). Without having check-ins I wouldn’t have been as successful with hitting my goals.

Would you recommend others to Flex Fuel and why?

I’d definitely recommend Flex Fuel to anyone who has athletic performance goals or just want to improve/change their body composition.  The nutritional knowledge and tools I learned through Katy will last me a lifetime!

 

We are so proud of you Tara! She is a shining example of what consistency and dedication can achieve!