Why is Kelly a Vegan and how did we get here??
There are a lot of reasons to go Vegan, for Health, To decrease pain in the Body, to save the Planet. Individually these all are great reasons, but collectively they are a strong argument.
But I want to share you the reason Kelly has been vegan for over a Year now and before that a Vegetarian for almost 10 years.
What is the difference between Vegan and Vegetarian you may ask?
They are similar, but Vegans really take it to the next level. Vegetarians don’t eat Meat or Meat products while vegans don’t eat any source of animal protein what so ever. So Diary is out, eggs are out, meat is out, anything that comes from an animal is out.
So knowing that now, I want to explain the reason why Kelly is doing the Vegan option. She is doing it for her health, and primarily to try and improve her health. Almost everybody in this world has an option and if they choose to consume animal proteins, majority of the time, their body doesn’t react have any adverse side effects. The human body is an amazing thing and it will change and adapt to almost anything. That’s if you are healthy. And being healthy varies from person to person. How many of you know somebody that has abused their body for decades, alcohol, processed foods, cigarettes (Just to name a few) they are doing OK until they hit middle age and then one thing after another starts to slowly show signs that the body is weakening and cant cope anymore. And then it becomes to late. But all these people had a choice.
But going back to Kelly, she has no choice. Imagine if you had no choice. Would you do whatever it takes. Would you do everything in your power to try and get better and try to improve your day to day living. Well that’s what she has to do
Over 15 years ago, Kelly initially got sick. She copped a flu like symptoms in 2005. But unlike anything that she had experienced before. Normally, she would just shake it off and go to work and push through it. But this was different. Initially she was bed ridden for a few days, we went and seen a doctor and got prescribed antibiotics. Simple you would think. Well it wasn’t. 3 weeks she carried that Flu like Illness and eventually got a little better. But since that day has never shrugged.
For weeks after that she felt tired, a fatigue that was debilitating. She lost her old self. Her OLD self. She was the life of any party, her old self that would wake up at 4am, go to work at The Age Print Centre and run the show there, she was a hard worker and out did all the guys there. Carrying, lifting, driving forklifts, being a machine. She would come home, go to the gym, cook me dinner, clean the house, do everything normal people do, but with a smile, loved every minute of being busy, loved life, loved people. She was Kelly. Nobody knew anybody like her before, she had time for everyone and we were just 6 months from getting married. The best time of our lives and on top of that we had just moved in with each other. That was before that nightmare day when she woke with that illness, that disease that changed her.
From that day on, 15 years ago, ours lives changed. Kelly was sick. And even when her symptoms subsided a little, she was still sick. She could hardly bring one foot in front of other and felt ill. We started looking more deeply, seeing other GPs, getting blood tests and nothing, they couldn’t find anything. So after a few months and just before we were to be married in December 2005, she was diagnosed with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome. At the time it was great to have a “LABEL” and think that we had an answer and could get a result from it. That never happened, years of seeing Specialist, Experts in Chronic Fatigue, Natural healers, Alternative Medicines. You name, we tried it.
And she still kept on fighting, We learned how to make her feel a little better, some days were better then others, some days were absolute shit.
Even though she was probably living at under 50% capacity, she still went to work, she had to reduce her hours, but gym was gone, training was gone. All the things she loved were taken away from her. She could just get through a day. One day at a time.
Then in 2007 she hit a bad wall, she had to quit work and was pretty much bed ridden for 12 months. She was at her worst and wanted to end the pain, misery and depression. Everyday when I was coming home from work, I feared the worst. But I kept her chin up and we kept pushing forward. Those days were the hardest that anybody could go through, but it has taken us where we are today. A strong bond, a strong belief, a strong passion and a strong love. We are One.
And because we have been through the hard times together we also experienced some unbelievable things along the way as well. All the hard times that we endured, forged what we have today, forged what we believe in. If you want an encyclopedia on the human body and how it works, ask Kelly. There is nothing that she hasn’t firstly tried or researched about. And it is only in the last few years that she has been able to do the normal things a little more frequently, and that is no thanks to medicine or specialist, it is to our devotion and dedication of trying everything.
The good thing to come out of her bad time in 2007, was that she did her schooling slowly in CERT 3&4 in Fitness and at least had some qualifications behind her. But believe me she still wasn’t training and her body and mind were still broken. It was to the end of that year, that she started feeling a little better and made a choice to return back to work at her job at the AGE. And you guys know Kelly, you give her a little sniff and she takes off running. She was feeling a little better, still at about 50%, but she took it as a new lease on life. She wanted to repay the management at her Job at the AGE, they kept her on and kept paying her weekly even though she wasn’t working, because they knew what she meant to them, they loved her there, as everybody does when they get to know her. So she went back, they helped her and she started to regain a little self belief and felt human again.
But even during this time, she was still trying. In that period she had her tonsils removed, maybe thinking they played a part, in her ears they put gromets, because her head was always feeling full and she never lost those flu-like symptoms. Her thyroid was abnormal, so they put her on medication. Then we realised that from all the anti-biotics that she had previously been taken that she developed a yeast overgrowth, Candida, so we had to start dealing with that. Kelly always ate very well, but with Candida, it loves sugar, and that was the first time she really had to go hard with a diet. She removed all sugar, processed, fructose, glucose anything. And that was for over 1 year. One year straight she didn’t have a drop. No yeast either. So staying away from all processed food in that time. She was still eating meat, but sparingly.
So her candida was that bad, that it took over a year to some what recover. But those early years was all about learning as we came across things. Kelly always felt blocked and deaf, she always said I wish something or someone could just suck everything out of my head. Then by luck, or by Gods will, one morning she woke up and her pillowcase was full of green and smelling liquid. She panicked and went and seen her GP immediately and took the sample. The results came back and it was Aspergillus, a fungus and it was growing inside her head. They said that if it had not come out and shown itself and we never treated it, that it would have entered her brain and killed her. Thank God it seeped out. So they treated that, got rid of that, she did feel a little better, and we honestly
thought, “YES” this is it, but with Kelly, there is no luck and her symptoms still stayed. She remained the same. Functional, but just living, not enjoying the moment.
2008 was a year that Kelly started her fitness career. Her dream job, she was still at the AGE, but started part time at FERNWOOD Cairnlea. A great place to start and build her confidence. Working the floor, helping people and doing PTs. Quickly, she realised she had something special to offer people. So she started devoting more and more time to fitness. Then one day she walked upstairs to Re-Creation Caroline Springs and that changed everything. As soon as the owners Rob and Darren seen her, they knew. Even though when she walkied in, wearing her AGE uniform and holding shopping bags, they knew. She started that night. They asked her to freestyle a class, she had never done that before. But bang, smashed it. And that’s where it started.
She went and registered for BodyPump, a week or so later and went to the initial training day, never before having participated in a BodyPump class. She just went and done it. So everybody in that initial training were participants or had taken part for many years, before they took that next step and became an instructor. Not Kell. Straight in and killed it. And just like that started teaching bodypump at Re-Creation. She took what she could get and wasn’t going to let her illness slow her down. We were GOING win.
But it was taking a toll. She was still feeling sick and fatigued constantly, still working at The Age, still at Fernwood and Now at Re-Creation, Rob and Darren could see she wasn’t right and offered her a full time position and all the support we needed, they helped us more then they know. She quit the age and Fernwood and now was solely at Re-Creation. Within a few months, Kell was taking more classes and became very close with the owners and Re-Creation. They were and still are very good friends of ours. Everything she did was for that place. And we loved it there.
That was 2008, and that was only 3 years after she first initially became sick. Yes she was eating very clean by this time, all processed food were out, all sugars were out. She had no choice. She couldn’t even risk being bad for one day. Because everyday was a blessing now. Everyday was different from the next and we never knew how bad she could be the next day. So nutrition had to stay on point. Everything was on point, She hadn’t really had a drink of alcohol in those 3 years and when she did she knew she was going to pay. So everything had to be done religiously day in and day out. No room for error. She was still eating meat and not yet a vegetarian. But like I said at the start, there is a reason for her needing to do what she does now. And that story is for another day. This is a little insight to where it all initially started and how we got to where we are today.