Paleo Every Day Keeps the Doctor Away: Sam O’Neill
Interview by Lindsey Johnson
If we were giving out awards like a high school yearbook, “Miss Consistency” would probably be the superlative I’d give to Invictus Member Sam O’Neill. You can pretty much set your watch by Sam; she’s always here by 3:45 p.m. for the 4:00 p.m. class at Invictus Point Loma. She’s a bright, shining light, always happy to be here and always helping and working with her fellow classmates or partners in crime. I chatted with Sam so I could get to know her a little more and shed some light on just who this consistent little spitfire is!
Sam has been in San Diego since her college years in 1999 and she now works as a Field Application Specialist for a Life Science Manufacturer – she sells tools to scientists! It comes as no surprise that Sam is a true fitness fanatic since she’s instructed everything from Bootcamp to Spinning, even Step Aerobics. Sam was introduced to CrossFit in July of 2012 at the IDEA World Fitness convention by participating in a workout that included rowing, burpees and pull-ups – she was hooked! However, a busy schedule and a husband that travels almost exclusively for work was standing in her way of fulfilling her fitness goals.
After some deep thought, Sam chose to reevaluate her goals and make herself and her own health a priority. Her top priority was to find a way to eliminate medications for an inflammatory condition she battled for twelve years; she has now been medication-free as of July 2013! Paleo is her cure!
In Sam’s words:
“For the past twelve years, I was on a vicious cycle of steroids that would make me more susceptible than most to the common colds and the flu. Doctors visits would ultimately lead to antibiotics that started my inflammatory cycle for more steroids. Being off medication has changed my life. I feel great! I look great! No more face and body bloat from prednisone! No more restless nights or upset steroid tummy!
My visits to the doctor have gone from once every six to eight weeks for twelve years to once this calendar year! I only went to the doctor this year to let him know that I had cured myself by adhering to a “Paleo” lifestyle. (He thought I was nuts, by the way). However, removing inflammatory foods such as dairy, grains and alcohol has really been a life saver! I started Paleo about a year and a half before joining Invictus and it took about six months for my inflammation to cease. No more steroids, no more colds and thankfully no more antibiotics!
Invictus has become like a new family for me! The people and environment keep me positive, motivated and making new friends that have similar goals and values. Invictus is, in a word: community. Prior to joining Invictus, I literally shuddered at the word community. Its overuse in recent fitness trends is to blame. And while the globo gyms and infomercials promise a fitness community that keeps you motivated and reaching your goals, Invictus members have nailed it! Their genuine interest in one’s life, struggles, goals and work is difficult to replicate.
The ladies of the 4:00 pm hour are kind, intelligent, goal-setters, goal-crushers, beautiful and above all strong! They’re a true inspiration! Now I understand and love the word community. It truly is what has kept me motivated, consistent and thoroughly enjoying every moment of my journey. The journey not the destination for once!
The ‘Look Good, Feel Good Challenge’ does not stop because the nine weeks are done. In this community, we are in it for a life-long wellness challenge. Invictus has also redefined how I set goals and how I recognize success!
Finally, the Invictus coaches have been more than a reason to attend. The amount of knowledge I have gained from each of them is immense and I vie for every bit they share! Thank you for making Invictus such a great community, facility and learning space!”
We couldn’t be happier to have Sam as part of our Invictus family! She’s a perfect example of what it means to be an Invicti – living her life to the fullest and committing to a happier, healthier lifestyle! Congratulations Sam and thank you so much for joining our family!