Aloha! I’m Lyndsey, the Social Media Coordinator at Sneakz. We think it's important that you guys know the real humans behind what happens around here, so lately we've been sharing some stories written by our own amazing team. My own perspective on what it means to live a “happy and healthy” life has changed many times in my young 23 years of livin’, and working with Sneakz has created yet another opportunity to reflect on that part of my story and to share it with the world.
As a child, I spent 20+ hours a week as a competitive gymnast where I learned how to dream big and work hard to achieve my goals. I began running cross country and track in high school where I found success early on running one of the leading times in the nation for the mile, 4:49. During these exciting years, I found myself considering the importance of food as performance fuel. My friends would joke with me when I pulled out my mom's packed lunch stuffed with raw veggies, hummus, sweet potatoes and whole avocados.
I was fortunate enough to pursue my distance running dreams at the Division 1 collegiate level. Balancing the transition to a new program, coach, curriculum, and living environment were exciting yet exhausting and the pressure to perform at the most elite athletic University, UCLA, consumed me. While I found friendship and comfort in my teammates, the cutthroat training mentality wore me down physically. A small, private school better suited my physical and emotional training needs while not compromising the goals and aspirations I set for myself, so I transferred to Loyola Marymount University.
Picking up and moving across town didn’t solve the physical toll running was taking on my body. The majority of my time at LMU was spent sidelined and heartbroken due to chronic injuries. After graduating, I began my Masters in Education where I hoped to salvage one more year of athletic eligibility post hip surgery.
Unfortunately, my body was screaming at me and I couldn’t push through the physical or emotional rollercoaster any longer. Broken bones, body dysmorphia, surgery, anemia, eating disorders, and epidurals were the tougher obstacles in my athletic journey. I would miss the friendships, camaraderie, and discipline of athletics, but was ready to fill the empty heart space with new adventures and relationships that previously didn’t fit into the collegiate athlete equation.
As you can imagine, the picture of wellness started to transform in my mind, I didn’t have to run 60 miles a week to feel like I was “healthy”. While I still miss running dearly, I started to find happiness in new passions like yoga, surfing, and cooking clean plant-based meals. I wanted to expand on wellness as a balance of the mind, body, and spirit when I stumbled upon a lucky, craigslist find for a cute green A-Frame home on the North Shore of Oahu just steps away from the beach, named the Hen House. I decided to pick up and move into the little slice of paradise and gratefully found a new way of being. Life is simple here, days are spent with my sea-sters checking the surf, rolling in the sand, and working around our communal table at home.
Sneakz has fit seamlessly into my life as a product and brand that allows me to use my education in media to extend my passion for healthy happy living. With so many ‘health’ oriented products on the grocery store shelf, I do my best to avoid misleading packaging and stick to what I know - real ingredients that I can pronounce. While the journey is still being written, I know my love for living an active life will remain and continue to be fueled by whole, healthy, organic nutrition.