“I was always an athlete and put muscle on easily. I was always told that my muscles were a gymnast’s muscles, not a dancer’s muscles. After contracting a bad case of the flu because of overtraining and treatment for a thyroid condition (hyperthyroidism, which made me lose weight) I was told that my new, weakened physique was perfect, even though I had no energy and was so depleted that I was crying all the time.
My teacher asked me about my diet and told me to make use of the fact I wasn’t able to eat in order to initiate a new, lower food intake diet. She asked me about my carb intake and was livid when I said I ate bread in the morning, then sent me a lot of information about calories in bread via WhatsApp. She called me later and provided a picture of an ideal meal she had made herself with literally one forkful of rice, which was the ‘traditional’ amount of carbs she allowed herself per day.
Luckily, I had a good boyfriend who was able to empower me to leave this teacher and find a new path. I was destroying my mental and physical health. Now I dance and train for myself and love it. I didn’t realize how much I had accepted injuries, fatigue, panic attacks, and low moods because of overtraining. The pain was nearly the least of my concerns. I lost a lot of years of life and earnings because of my heavy training schedule. I never listened to my body, but now I do.”