The blog welcomes FY Team Member Joe Rossi, here to share his wellness journey. For him, it involved a lot of nutrition education and re-balancing in order to cultivate change. Learn what brought him from point A to point B!

FY: Hello Joe! What has been the theme of your wellness journey?

Joe: Mainly, it was the importance of taking care of myself, my well-being, and understanding what micro-nutrients do in my food and body. 

FY: Was there ever a point you felt was a wake up call?

Joe: Yeah, there was a point where I wasn't super active and wasn't happy about where I was weight-wise. I had one friend that was super into the health world, and he helped me realize "here's how you do it". He helped me face the realities of fast food, the difference between organic and non-organic, and think about food with a more basic, primitive mindset to get healthier. 

FY: Are you talking about an ancestral diet? 

Joe: My friend eats for his genetics, but he's more into that than me. My rule of thumb is more about being conscious of what I'm doing and realizing that everything is connected. Having too many binge days, or being too obsessed with health can throw off my balance. Maintaining a healthy balance between eating, working out, and not over-working myself has been key to this balance. 

FY: When did you meet your healthy friend?

Joe: This happened a little over a year ago. My clothes weren't fitting anymore, I felt like I wasn't living up to my full potential, and I needed to seek out the right people for my life. When I realized I wanted to change my lifestyle, I remembered this friend from highschool. I remembered him as a guy living to the extreme in terms of health, so I called him up like, "Hey, what are you up to?" We reconnected, and he helped me realize that I wanted to do better. I've learned a lot from his extreme tendencies, like researching everything that affects well-being. 

FY: Were there any other people who inspired you to get healthy? 

Joe: Yes, there's this pro-skater: Neen Williams. He has this Youtube video that just popped up in my "recommended" section, about how he made a full 180 turn in his life, and that was really inspiring to me. I thought, "That looks interesting..." and it ended up being amazing! It's about him going sober, his love of pro-skating propelling him to get healthier to be the best self he can be. For me, watching that video was incredibly inspiring, and a huge turning point. 

(Curious about Joe's recommended video? Check it out here: "Why Pro Skater Neen Williams Chose Sobriety and Healthy Eating".)

FY: Very cool! What were some of the biggest changes that happened at that time? 

Joe: It was an interesting time for me because all these big life changes happened at once. I quit my job, my girlfriend and I separated after two years, and a new semester of school began. There was a lot I had to confront--a lot I had been pushing under the rug for myself and for others. 

FY: Tell us more about what your job and school changes looked like. 

At my old job, I was a griller for a buffet, which was very stressful and unhealthy. 

FY: Right, because if the food wasn't healthy, it would affect your physical health, and the stress probably affected your mental health. 

Joe: Right! So, I quit that.

For school, I started my last semester of COD. Because of the classes, it was the best semester of school yet. I focused on bettering myself, and took classes on things that were and are important to me. I took a physical education class on Kineseology, a film class, and an anthropology class that were all interesting to me. I will be starting at [a new school] in the fall!

FY: That's awesome! Good for you. As you changed your diet, was there exercise you discovered you really enjoyed?

Joe: Well, I enjoyed playing sports a lot growing up. Now, I love basketball, and started playing tennis about a year ago when I made friends who played. When I made the life switch, I sought out friends that were into health and gravitated more towards them. 

FY: As we close up, is there anything you want to say in closing to encourage readers?

Joe: If you want to make a change, make it now! But first, take the time to reflect on your well-being, consider if you are doing the right thing for yourself.

Thanks to Joe for sharing! When you shop in-store, you can get to know our friendly team a little more; don't forget to show love to our essential workers! We all have our own stories. Do you have an interesting health story? Comment below, and maybe we'll hit you up for an interview!