We’re lucky to have so many inspiring athletes on our roster, but this summer, we are particularly excited to welcome one of our newest Promix Athletes to the #fitfam.
Katelyn Wright is a certified personal trainer & professional golfer who does not mess around when it comes to competition: she’s a natural born athlete with a healthy appetite for winning both on and off the green. Here, she shares her story and provides us with her tried and true tips and tricks on how to stay healthy and balanced while working toward big goals.
A DOUBLE TAKE
Take a look at Katelyn Wright’s resume and you’ll see a long list of impressive wins and extensive experience in her sport that dates back well over ten years.
Take a look at her instagram, and you’ll see a strong, young athlete who clearly has all of the talent and drive required for the big time.
Close in on the math between her resume and her most recent photo and you’ll realize this impressive young woman has been playing (and winning) the game… well, since she was just a little girl.
THE EARLY YEARS
Her love and obvious natural talent for golf began at a young age, but growing up in Lake Tahoe, due to the weather, it was impossible to play year round. Luckily, she grew up surrounded by other driven athletes. “My mom was, hands down, one of the greatest female athletes I’ve ever known,” she says, explaining how her mother took meticulous care to encourage her and her brothers to participate in multiple sports, cross train, and become physically well-rounded.
While she waited to break out her golf clubs, Katelyn tried her hand at track and field, running the 400m, 800m, and various relays. She excelled immediately, setting 9 school records and even going on to set one for the state. She also started on her high school Varsity basketball team from her freshman year until she graduated.
With so much energy, she “loved everything about sports” and tried to play everything for “as long as possible.”
A HEAD START ON NUTRITION
One thing that affected Katelyn’s day-today from a young age was a diagnosis of Celiac Disease that came when she was 12. People with Celiac Disease have an intolerance to gluten that can cause intense abdominal pain, fatigue, and even result in a lack of focus similar to ADHD (1).
But it wasn’t just Katelyn who suffered. Her entire family was diagnosed with Celiac Disease, which meant her household became gluten free early on.
Katelyn credits this obstacle with developing extremely healthy and strict dietary habits. As athletes, she and her family had to be aware of exactly what foods and ingredients they consumed to keep their symptoms at bay and avoid their Celiac affecting their performance, let alone their daily lives.
OVERCOMING THE ODDS
Celiac Disease wasn’t the only thing standing in Katelyn’s way.
“As a female athlete, we are held to high standards when it comes to how we look on and off the course & field in addition to how we perform. It can take a toll on your mental health.”
Training began to take just as much toll on her mind as it did her body.
Like so many women, whether they identify as athletes or have never played a sport in their lives, Katelyn felt pressure to adhere to other people’s standards when it came to her physique. As she truly started her golf career in earnest in her college years, she “went through both anorexia and bulimia” using exercise as a form of punishment for her body. “Training and mental health are very interconnected for me,” she confesses, and goes on to say that, over the years, she’s learned to celebrate how strong and powerful she is while reminding herself that she is lucky to be able to move and fuel healthfully every day.
With a lot of work and a mental reset, her training became a privilege, not a punishment for indulgence or inactivity. Rest and recovery became a critical portion of her regime as she began to understand that they were just as important as her workouts in reaching her goals.
“I believe that exercise, hands down, is the greatest form of medicine.” Katelyn began to use movement as a way to improve and reward herself.
As Katelyn grew up and honed her athletic skills, she realized something about herself. She LOVED to win.
“I’m addicted to the rush of competition and I always want to see how good I can be,” she confides. “Competition, to me, is such an internal thing. I love competing with myself and constantly raising my own personal bar.”
All of her hard work paid off. As a professional golfer, Katelyn’s competition schedule (read: her opportunities to WIN) are ample. To keep up with a schedule that had her competing weekly at its busiest, she had to get serious about training specifically to keep her body in peak condition and build the endurance and mental discipline needed to stay in the zone while she played for 4-5 hours at a time.
“With golf, you need to be in this zen-like mode and try and keep your emotions steady. It’s very mentally taxing, and it can take months to see your work pay off,” she explains. “As soon as I had to focus my attention to golf solely, I craved intensity and missed pushing myself to my limits.”
That’s where her fresh, improved workout routine came into play.
In her training off the green, Katelyn likes to let her body take over and mind relax, setting speed and power-based goals so she can get some of the more instant physical satisfaction that golf doesn’t provide. “[In the gym], you get what you put in, and can see results right away. I love that feeling of pushing myself past my limits and boundaries, and just being strong. It’s an addicting feeling.”
PRACTICE, PRACTICE, PRACTICE
A self-proclaimed creature of habit, Katelyn sets her alarm clock for 4:30am.
She starts the day with water + lemon and also manages to squeeze in some light stretching to make sure she’s prepared for her first workout of the day.
Another thing that gets her pumped to hit the gym? Coffee with cinnamon and Promix Optimal Chocolate Collagen Peptide Protein powder. “I love blending my collagen peptides in my morning coffee, they taste SO AMAZING! It’s definitely easy and quick for great nutrition when I’m in the gym or on the golf course for those early morning tee times!” Before these crack-of-dawn training sessions, the added BCAAs are the perfect fuel for fasted workouts.
Her workouts depend on where she’s at in her season and how much she is playing, though she frequently starts the day by meeting with her trainer, Mike, who she has worked with since she was in high school.
Some habits are hard to break, and every now and then, Katelyn is tempted to overtrain. “I always want to do more than I need to in the gym, so having Mike on my team has really been a game changer.”
Her morning workouts consist of intervals on a cardio machine like a curve treadmill or versa climber. She’ll then mix in circuit strength training with kettlebells. The final thing she never leaves a workout without doing is core training!
In the afternoon, she’ll hit the gym again and focus more on strength, cutting back on cardio. The moves she does to improve her golf game bear a resemblance to some of the other sports she loves.
“I do a lot of unilateral and explosive training, very similar to track athletes.”
FUEL FIT FOR A PRO
As you can imagine, two-a-day training sessions, on top of actually competing in her sport, require both the right amount and the right form of fuel.
“I like to have two to three larger meals during the day. Typically, I don’t eat until after my first workout is over. Then I make a vegetable scramble with either a poached egg or some smoked salmon.” She tends to stay on the lighter side for lunch, opting for fiber-rich meals “made up of more vegetables and some good protein.” Dinner generally follows the same pattern as lunch to end the day with clean fuel that will help her recover overnight and be ready to do it all again come morning.
“I follow a very plant-based, holistic approach to my nutrition and eat 95% whole, organic food. One of the reasons I LOVE Promix so much is because I know how it is sourced and where it comes from. None of my Promix proteins or supplements leave me bloated and heavy after I consume them,” which is the mark of clean, pure ingredients and an absence of fillers.
Katelyn’s diet doesn’t change much when she is traveling to compete verses when she’s training at home. “I like routine. When I’m on the road, I always stay somewhere that has a kitchen, and I know how to find restaurants that I trust. I’m a big fan of Whole Foods and their salad bar because it’s quick and easy, and I know I’m getting quality ingredients.”
HERE AND NOW
About a year and a half ago, Katelyn was diagnosed with Lupus AND Hashimoto Thyroiditis.
Lupus is an autoimmune disorder that essentially causes the immune system to get confused. Immune systems of those who suffer from Lupus cannot tell the difference between foreign invaders and their body’s healthy tissues, causing the body to make autoantibodies that attack and destroy healthy tissue. These autoantibodies cause inflammation, pain, and irreversible damage in various parts of the body (2).
Combine her Lupus with Hashimoto’s Disease, a thyroid disorder that causes the body to attack the thyroid (3), and Katelyn sudden had a lot of things working against her from the inside out.
“It was a very difficult year and I wanted to do everything I could to treat my body as naturally as possible.”
Rather than allowing bad news to consume her, she fought back. “Some of my simplest rituals I observe are non negotiables in my life. This includes working out and eating healthy. I think it’s easy to get caught up in instant gratification and not look at how something will make you feel tomorrow, or next week.” But the overwhelming task of dealing with Celiac Disease, Lupus, and Hashimoto’s means Katelyn manages to keep the big picture in mind while doing her best to live moment to moment.
“I think it’s really important to take one small step at a time instead of looking at the whole picture all at once. It can be overwhelming seeing LIFE GOALS up on our walls sometimes. For me, it causes me to overanalyze.” She even admits to feeling so overwhelmed she’s sometimes tempted to give up all together.
But she never does.
“I am constantly reminding myself to put one foot in front of the other. Each step I take, no matter how challenging, gets me closer to that big picture. After all, life is more about the journey than the destination.”