Student reaps benefits of healthier lifestyle

Ashley Price, junior mechatronic engineering major, used to be unhappy with her body but took steps toward a healthier lifestyle and says she feels confident now. Photo credit: Dj Morris

From losing weight to gaining confidence, Ashley Price reached her goal of losing 30 pounds. She began using healthy weight loss options by cutting down her food portions, attending spin class three times a week and learning to love her body.

The Chico State student organization Embodied hosted Love Every Body Week at the end of February. The event had panels and guest speakers who spoke about eating disorders and body image.

One of the key principles the organization emphasizes is that people should eat and exercise for their own benefit and enjoyment.

Price, a junior mechatronic engineering major, exemplifies that principle.

Growing up, Price was athletic and physically in shape, but as she got older she began to neglect her health and eat a lot. When she started college, she noticed how different she became.

“I found myself not socializing as much,” Price said. “I was always short with people and after awhile they gave up on me. I became lonely and started to eat a lot.”

In Price’s major, there are more men than women and that affected her weight, she said.

“I would go home and eat my feelings,” Price said. “Then I realized I just wasn’t happy anymore and something had to change.”

Price eventually made the decision to do something about her health. She downloaded the app Lose It!, which helped her document how much she ate during the day.

“I started to eat in moderation,” Price said. “I knew cutting out food I like would not have worked because it would just make me crave it more.”

Losing weight was not about the numbers to Price. She was happy with who she already was, and she just wanted to feel better mentally, she said.

“I felt like losing weight to appear attractive was not the case,” Price said. “It was all about how I felt on the inside. I was having health problems because of my weight.”

Price related to what Love Every Body Week promoted and agreed that she loved herself no matter what she looked like, she said. Her goal in losing weight was to become healthier.

After coming back from summer vacation, her coworkers at the Accessibility Resource Center noticed how happy she looked.

“When I got back, I realized my responses to people were different,” Price said. “I wanted to engage.”

Making healthy food choices and learning to love her body and herself helped Price make positive changes for her health and to not put such an emphasis on weight.

“I don’t care about my weight,” Price said. “I care about being present.”

DJ Morris can be reached at [email protected] or @djthejournalist on Twitter.