Dara Bowlin’s REBORN Success Story
To us, a REBORN athlete embodies and portrays what the entire CFRR coaching team believes in as a whole. This is someone that the entire community as a whole looks up to. Not in the way you might be thinking. Being RX and having the fastest “Fran” time are just numbers. To us being truly REBORN is taking what your life was, and literally changing it to what you have always hoped it would be. Physically, Mentally, and Emotionally you are a new person. You see, once you are truly REBORN, the fear of going back to who you once were just doesn’t haunt you like it used to. The new you feels too good, and its just no longer worth it to be afraid of your previous lifestyle. Being in this place takes years of time and consistency. Tons of mistakes and downfalls. Moments where you have your head in your hands and just think you can’t make it, but with full TRUST and FAITH in what #CFRR believes, YOU OVERCOME. That is to us what it means to be #REBORN.
Throughout childhood and into my teen and young adult years, weight was never an issue. In fact, I never really thought about weight. I was more concerned with my performance as a competitive swimmer and spent a couple hours most days at practice as part of a varsity swim team or as a member of a USA Swim Club. It wasn’t until I quit swimming competitively that I started to gain weight.
In hindsight, I hate the adage of “it just snuck up on me,” but that is exactly how it felt.
I went into college at a little over 5’9” and weighing 140 pounds, and came out at…are you ready for this: 209 pounds. Forget the noted “freshman 15,” I smashed that and went for the “undergraduate 70.” Throughout the next several years I lost some of that weight and by the time I finished graduate school, in 2006, I had managed to get back down to about 150 pounds. Sounds great, right? Wrong. I lost the majority of the weight by cutting out carbohydrates and sporadically going to a global gym. I worked out on my own but in all reality, I had no idea what I was doing or how to work out in a manner that focused on form and function.
Fast-forward to late 2014, I was ready to make a change as the weight I had lost by cutting out carbohydrates had immediately returned, with a vengeance no less, as soon as I sunk my teeth into something with any carbohydrates in it. In late November of 2014, at the suggestion of a friend, I joined CrossFit Round Rock (CFRR). And although I have loved my journey to a healthier lifestyle, I must admit I could have sworn I was near death on more than one occasion, thanks to Annie, Fran, etc. From the get-go, I always heard “it’s what you eat” and “you can’t outwork a bad diet,” but quite simply I did not believe it (sorry Coach Adrien). With that said, after a year at CFRR, although I was losing weight and getting stronger, I was not seeing the results I had anticipated. With that in mind, I had the epiphany that it might actually be true….all that talk about clean eating and stuff. I slowly, and I mean slowly, started to rethink what I put in my body. It was hard work to reprogram how I viewed food.
By January of 2016, it was FINALLY making sense; healthy eating is the way to go and carbohydrates are not the enemy!
Reading labels and meal prepping still isn’t on my list of favorite things to do, but at least I don’t HATE it anymore. It just is something that needs to be done and the results speak for themselves. Throughout 2016 I lost about 50 pounds and I ate plenty of great tasting, healthy food during the journey. Now I think of food in terms of “how will this help me during a WOD?” and “how will it make me feel.” I am thrilled about the knowledge and support I have received at CFRR! With all that said, I highly recommend anyone who is interested in a healthier lifestyle, take the plunge and try CrossFit. It is worth every second: all the feelings of accomplishment when hitting a new PR, getting a new movement (like toes-to-bar), and all the sore muscles that let you know you are making progress. Every single Coach at CFRR not only gets to know you, but actually cares, and my fellow classmates not only provide inspiration but they are there cheering you along the way.