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Naked And Not Afraid: After Losing 150 Pounds, She Raced In The Nude

             
By Danielle Zickl, Prevention

When Naomi Teeter was younger, she used food as a way to numb her feelings and deal with the uncertainty that came along with having a father who was an alcoholic.

As far back as she can remember, Teeter, 34, would sneak extra pieces of cake and scoops of ice cream, and stock up on everything from pudding to gummy worms. 

"I was never taught how to deal with my emotions," she told Runner’s World by phone. "Plus, my entire family was overweight, so I just thought it was normal."

After years of cycling between starving herself—or in her eyes, dieting—and binging, Teeter needed a change.

"At my heaviest, I was over 300 pounds," she said. "I was tired of living in Tulsa, my friends were just party people who hung out at bars, and I just didn't want that life anymore. I wanted to go out and do other things."
          
              
So when she was 26 years old, Teeter packed her bags and moved across the country to Spokane, Washington to start over. She began tracking what she ate and working out at a local gym when a new co-worker told her that running was good for weight loss. 
  
"The endorphins I felt got me hooked," Teeter said. "I felt phenomenal during and after, and knew I wanted to keep at it."

So when she was 26 years old, Teeter packed her bags and moved across the country to Spokane, Washington to start over. She began tracking what she ate and working out at a local gym when a new co-worker told her that running was good for weight loss. 

"The endorphins I felt got me hooked," Teeter said. "I felt phenomenal during and after, and knew I wanted to keep at it."
            
               
Teeter and her husband ran the 2016 Bare Buns Fun Run, a 5K that takes place at a local nudist ranch. And although she was anxious in the beginning as she was getting undressed, her nerves settled down once she realized everyone pretty much looked the same.

"Once I started running, I realized I didn't look or sound any different than anyone else," she said. "I didn't feel like I stuck out as much as I thought I would."

Teeter crossed the finish line in 39:16.5, finishing first in her age group. She felt a wave of emotion come over her—the experience made her realize she had nothing to hide anymore. 

"Everyone was clapping and cheering, and I was choking back tears. I felt total acceptance for the first time in my life."
             
            
So she took the opportunity to continue practicing body positivity. Teeter and her husband have since hiked and swam naked as well. And this July, they plan on running Bare Buns for the second year. 

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"This journey changed my perspective on life and made me realize the drive and discipline I didn't even know I had," Teeter said. "Even though it can be scary, it's an exhilarating feeling to know that anything is possible."

Now a health coach, Teeter regularly helps people who are starting out on their own journeys. 

"We all start where we start," she said. "You just have to find something enjoyable and get out there."


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Health Magazine: Naked And Not Afraid: After Losing 150 Pounds, She Raced In The Nude
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