Out in the Open

This woman was loving her healthy routine, until it became too much

Erin Strybis' healthy habits — perpetuated by social media — became unhealthy.
Erin Strybis was devoting too much of her free time to her online fitness life.

As time ticked down towards her wedding, Erin Strybis decided it was time to get serious about toning up. The Chicago resident had always been athletic and loved to run, but saw an opportunity to take her fitness — and physique — to the next level.

She hired a trainer and went on the Paleo diet to drop a few pounds, and saw motivating results. After her wedding, the weight came back.

Erin turned to Instagram to get her back on track. An online fitness community helped keep her accountable, and she was constantly posting meals and workouts, and interacting with friends. It took up a lot of time, and left her feeling like she wasn't quite experiencing life the way she wanted. 

Normally, she woke up at the crack of dawn, went for a workout, prepared a specific number of meals and snacks, and went to work — perhaps doing a second workout during her lunch break. Her diet? Plenty of green vegetables and protein, and very few starchy vegetables and carbs.

This all changed when she realized she was pregnant. She quickly changed her days to allow for more rest and foods that she craved (and made her less queasy), and had to accept that she was going to take up more physical space. 

With a new baby now, she's easing back into working out, and although she worries health and fitness could take over her life again, she's more at peace with her body and a lot less critical of how she looks.

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