Today I got to thinking about WHY I started a fitness journey over 13 years ago and how it all started by taking a leap.
Flashback to when I was 28 years old….
It was a good year. I ran my first marathon and had just bought my own townhome– two major life milestones all in the same month. I had a corporate job; one that gave me a social life and the comfort of stability over the years. I had a lot of friends, and a lot of fun. However, there was one thing wrong— thirty plus pounds crept on over the years of mourning the loss of my Mom to cancer. My Mom was taken from me when I was 21. I watched her slowly slip away over a four-year timeframe. She was diagnosed with Ovarian Cancer my senior year of high school and she lost her battle the August I was about to enter my senior year of college. When my high school friends were looking for colleges, I was learning that my Mom was diagnosed with cancer. When my college roomates were going home in the summer to be waitresses and enjoy time off, I was helping to care for my sick Mom as she threw up all-day and was hooked up to an IV.
Life was not fair or normal at the age of 21! But looking back now, life is not going to be fair!
It was my Mom’s final wish to watch my graduate from college. She didn’t make it to that milestone, but I powered through that last year as a way to honor her. After college, I took up running as a healthy outlet to de-stress and have something for me, probably a coping mechanism, and a good one it was. Running was a way to numb the pain I was feeling in my heart; it was an escape. I could escape reality and just feel the burn of my legs and heart. Yes there are many unhealthier habits I could have taken up (some of those I did like drinking and wracking up credit card debt). So yes, running was a healthy outlet but it was also a way to use the excuse, “I can eat whatever I want.”
Thirty-plus pounds crept on over the course of the years, and at the age of 28 I saw a picture of myself and decided I needed to CHANGE. I was not comfortable in my own skin anymore. I had bought the biggest size of clothing I had ever bought before. I felt the need to finally take action and take care of ME! It was time to CHANGE and fight for me!
I began to learn more about food and how it was causing me to gain weight, even with all the running. I watched my portions and learned to cook healthier. I joined a gym, my local YMCA, where I could be around other people for motivation and support of like- minded people. Being on a health journey can be isolating, and you need your “people” to keep you strong and help you to say no to habits that were of the past.
I lost 30 pounds in about 9 months and felt amazing. I was a knew “me” as I turned 30 that year. I felt confident in me because I took the time to work on me. I felt more like I knew WHO I was and what I wanted out of life. It was that same year that I met my husband and was open to love for the first time in a long time too.
I began to teach fitness classes as a way to pay it forward and help others on their journey. I wanted to be a part of someone else’s support system. I kept my corporate job and taught a few classes a week, and felt pulled towards a career where I could do what I loved and help people.
Fast forward, after our first baby I decided to stay-at-home and figure out what I wanted to do next. The corporate life wasn’t quite me anymore. I desired something that I was passionate about, where I could leave feeling fulfilled and surrounded by people who are like me. I kept teaching classes while raising two little boys as a way to stay connected to fitness folks, help others, and work on ME while in the “Mom” trenches.
As my boys get older, I add more. Fitness fuels me. Helping people gets me out of bed each day. I became a Beachbody coach because it felt like the next logical step for me. I could help EVEN more people. I could do whatever I wanted to with it. I could schedule my own hours, and work around my family. I could learn more about fitness and nutrition, and be a better version of myself. I could meet MORE like-minded ladies who are uplifting and working on themselves too. I could have something for “me” besides being a Mom, wife, CEO of the household. I could earn trips and finally add income to the family after a few years of putting that aside.
I know what it’s like to be STUCK. Stuck in a fitness rut. Stuck in a job I wasn’t truly passionate about. Stuck as a stay-at-home Mom that felt a bit disconnected to other like-minded women.
I finally feel fulfilled. I have found what motivates me. I wake up with a purpose each day. If it’s a day where I don’t feel like showing up, I know there’s a team of ladies who are doing the same thing and it pushes me to JUST DO. If I hit a bump in my fitness or health journey, there’s always someone to pick me back up.
TAKE A LEAP! Sometimes life gives you bumps to be able to turn down another road. Listen to your signs. Don’t be afraid. It’s never too late to figure out what you want to be or do. I have dabbled in writing in the past, and now I can bring it back to my world now. This is my first official blog post as a health coach and motivator!
Thanks for listening and I’ll be back for more.