From Dabbling In Health To Making Lasting Changes With Sara Harn
Sara Harn is a dog Mom, equestrian and a Digital Project Manager.
Meet Sara Harn
Learn more about Sara Harn via the interview below!
Tell us about yourself!
My name is Sara Harn! Here are some fast facts about me: I’m 24-years-old and grew up in Wisconsin, but now live outside of Memphis in Arlington, TN. I have an amazing fiance, Ashton, and am getting married this fall! I work for Filament, an agriculture marketing agency as a Digital Project Manager and love it. I’m also a dog mom to Britta and equestrian.
How did you get into health and fitness? What did your journey look like?
My journey started with a LOT of failed attempts at “get fit quick” schemes. As a child, I was always the one faking sickness to get out of gym class. Sports were never something I really enjoyed and certainly wouldn’t consider myself athletic. I always struggled with being “chubby” growing up, but I didn’t learn the tools to be healthy. It was in college that I can remember the first time I realized you should actually drink water (and a lot of it!)… I started slowly eating healthier, but would often binge on the weekends and do what felt good in the moment. Then came a series of gym memberships that I never used. All this to say, I dabbled in “health” for a really long time, but was really only interested in getting skinny and putting in as little work as possible.
Then in February 2018, I had a pivotal moment. I remember looking down at my stomach and thinking “When did my stomach get so big?!” That moment is forever burned into my mind and it launched my actual health journey. I started working out with Fitness Blender at home the very next day and actually stuck with it for once in my life.
I started eating in moderation and focusing on eating more good than bad. In March, my commitment went even deeper when a friend asked me if I wanted to come to watch them run a half marathon in the fall. I remember being so offended that they asked me to come watch and assumed this meant they thought I couldn’t run it myself (totally not the case, BTW.) So I signed up on a whim and started running.
Turns out, I love running. I’ve always loved being outside and hiking, but running has given me an outlet for stress relief, a way to get into nature and push myself mentally and physically. I ran my half in November 2018 and ended 2018 the healthiest I’ve ever been. Unfortunately, I didn’t train well and injured myself at the end of last year. Now, I’m rebuilding my strength and focusing on making choices that make me feel good and fuel my body and mind.
How do you encourage or educate others about living a healthy lifestyle?
I started a “fitness” account, but actually use it as my outlet, versus using it to encourage others. Instead, I find that being raw and real with people in-person is the best way to encourage others to make healthier choices. Ultimately, small choices over time will result in bigger things than massive changes all at once that burn you out.
I love reading food labels and have no shame about doing it in the grocery store, at the office, etc. This has actually opened a lot of doors for me to have conversations about choosing the healthier options to fuel your body.
Why do you think it’s important to educate others about living a healthy lifestyle?
I think our generation is going through what I like to call a “health awakening.” Growing up, I ate a lot of fast food, carbs, sugar and soda and had no idea these things were bad for me. I can’t remember people talking about health or making better choices when I was growing up and I’m hoping my children will grow up in a world where health is commonplace. I’m planning to leave the world a better, more educated place and this is why I think it’s important to share my health story with others.
What suggestions do you have for those looking to start living a healthier life?
Start with small changes. I failed so many times because I attempted to make massive changes all at once and they burned me out. Start by adding veggies to every meal or taking a 10-minute walk. For me, these small changes have all added up over time and I’m slowly building the body and lifestyle I’ve always wanted.
What does a typical day of eating and workouts look like for you?
I wouldn’t really say I have a “typical” day. I try to eat and move my body in ways that serve me that day. In general, I just look to pick the “healthier” thing. I walk for at least 45 minutes a day and add in an additional workout whenever possible.
I jump-started my health journey by following Carli Williams’ meal plan. This helped me learn to structure my eating in ways that served my body. I’ve basically been on her plan ever since, but now I no longer track, I’m just more mindful and make the better choice whenever possible. I indulge at least once a week because it helps me stay on track.
Essentially, I just try to choose things that would fuel my body and mind in both my eating and fitness. This definitely isn’t the traditional approach, but it’s what works for me. I’ve never been happier or more confident than I am right now.
Anything else you would like to share?
Your health needs to serve you, not stress you out. Some days you need to make cookies and eat the dough and other days you need to go on a 10-mile run. Listen to your body and mind and feed it what it needs. Remember, your health is a lifelong marathon, not a sprint.
If you would like to follow Sara Harn on her journey, you can follow her on Instagram.