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Find out how four employees have embraced healthy lifestyle changes to improve their way of living

How Kodiak Cakes Lives Healthy Too

You may have noticed our recent launch of the Eat Better. Live Better. Program that followed three people’s journeys toward a healthier life. If you haven’t checked it out yet, head to our website to get the full scoop. The participants stories have inspired readers both near and far, and especially at Kodiak Cakes. This week we asked four folks around the office how they’ve embraced the Eat Better. Live Better. values themselves. Here are their stories:

Did you have any bad habits you had to overcome to help you start living a healthier lifestyle?

Cam: I was under a spell that allowed me to think that as long as I worked out in some form, what I ate didn’t matter. Even more, I believed the harder I worked out the more I could/should/would eat. Turns out that is not the best mindset to have.

Karen: Growing up in a large family, I thought our eating habits were a function of budget rather than health. We had a full garden, raised our own chickens for eggs and meat, and were never allowed to eat store bought cereals. But becoming an adult has various freedoms, like buying your own food. I soon developed bad habits like eating cold cereal, little protein, lots of white flour, pasta, and few vegetables.

Stazia: I grew up in a place where everyone around me lived a very active and healthy lifestyle, so, for the most part, I did too. I knew the basics for living healthy included eating real foods like whole grains and getting outside to exercise. Even though I grew up that way, as an adult I became that person who’s known for eating pizza, breadsticks, Cheez-It’s and candy… not my proudest moment.

Steve: My family’s health history isn’t great. Type 2 diabetes laid claim to my late grandpa (who was one of my greatest cheerleaders) and has recently plagued my mom. Originally, this was a wakeup call for me and I did the whole “run two miles before work” thing. But when I realized I wasn’t as fast as I was in high school, I felt discouraged and consequently didn’t stick with my routine. Cue the “dad bod.”

What healthy lifestyle changes have you made, big or small, to begin to feel healthier and happier?

Cam: One day I realized that my mindset wasn’t working and, in order to hit my fitness goals, I needed to create a better balance between my food and exercise habits. I chose to really focus on the meals I ate throughout the day to try to identify what was actually helping me during my workouts and what was clearly holding me back. This small change to simply step back and really evaluate my food choices has had a major impact in helping me progress toward my goals.

Karen: A few years ago, after a running injury limited my ability to burn the high level of calories I was consuming, a close friend introduced me to “macro counting.” I learned more about what “healthy food” actually meant and why your body needs protein, fat, and even carbs. I started fueling my weightlifting exercise with a more balanced diet to help me prepare for two body building events. The competitions were fun, but what I loved most was understanding food and how it works for or against your body.

Stazia: I realized I had to change my lifestyle when I volunteered to run a leg of a relay running event and I could barely do it. I probably only ran about five miles, well, I actually walked half of it. At the same time, I was working on the Eat Better. Live Better. Program for work.  I watched as the participants began to eat healthier and workout for months while I just sat there every day eating pizza. Once the New Year started, I knew it was my turn to make a change. But I also knew I would need support in order for me to stay on track.  So, I got a personal trainer, dietitian, and a gym pass close to the office. It was a crazy step for me to take, but my goal is simple: eat healthier, enjoy whole foods, and be more active.

Steve: I signed up for a half marathon to motivate myself to keep running. The problem was I couldn’t sustain any energy and I was sick of drinking pickle juice after long runs for cramping. So, as any 20-something year-old would do, I Googled, “how to run and not die.” I quickly learned that my diet definitely did not support an active lifestyle; my breakfast was nonexistent, lunch was not much more than a ham sandwich, and I never drank enough water. So, I changed it all. I immediately felt like I had more energy when I introduced more protein, useful carbs, and water in my diet.

What goals have you set for 2020 that continue to motivate you throughout the journey?

Cam: This year I will be training for and taking on my first ever triathlon. I’m nervous but up for the challenge.

Karen: My goal is to continue to eat healthy each day and find new and creative ways to be active while sticking to my current morning workout habits.

Stazia: I’m excited to push myself. Here’s to being sore every day, building muscle, cutting down on the pizza, not being winded after walking up the stairs in the office, and getting outside!

Steve: I’m training for a Spartan race and I have a goal to bench press 300 lbs. before I turn 30 in 2020. I miss my grandpa like crazy and I hope my actions inspire my two kiddos to stay healthy.

Has the Eat Better. Live Better. Program inspired you to make healthy lifestyle changes this year? Join in the buzz and share your story with us on Facebook and Instagram by tagging @kodiakcakes and using #kodiakcakes. Cheers to a new year of positive changes!

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