I figure if I'm going to get to know all of you who've recently joined FWF, and the ones who will come along to join us in the future, this would be a good place to start to introduce myself a little more fully and to return to blogging more regularly -- one of my 2015 goals. :)
To start things off, I'm a 35 year old mom of two boys (almost 11 and almost 3), I'm married and we both work from home. We also homeschool our eldest boy (through Indiana Connections Academy). I'm a Team Beachbody coach, a social media strategist and manager, copywriter and avid runner. I'm about 5'1" and currently reside in the 135-145lb range.
Fast forward a bit to my move to England at age 19. Long story short, met a guy through AOL at the dawn of 'internet dating', flew over the ocean solo to meet him in person, I stayed, we married, and I learned oh-so-much about life outside my little 'box' of rural / suburban Indiana. This union ended when I became so unbearably homesick I moved back to the States in 2003.
Quickly after that, I got pregnant with my now almost-11-year-old. After a few weeks of bed rest, he was born 6 weeks premature and spent his first four weeks in the NICU. The relationship with his father was tumultuous (to keep a long story as short as possible). At the end of the relationship, I was left vulnerable, overweight, unhappy and neglectful of self.
It took some time to start to heal, and I wasn't particularly looking for another relationship, just friendship, new people in my life, and so on. A few months later, I met the man who I've called husband for the past 3 years. At that time, I was on the verge of making some positive changes in my life to rediscover my true self and learn to love myself.
I was just gearing up to stop smoking cigarettes and did just that a couple months or so after he and I met and began dating. It took a bit longer, but I finally got passionately irritated enough to start doing something about my weight. We got pregnant twice and I miscarried twice. We wanted a baby together so fervently, it was heartbreaking each time we lost. The miscarriages are partially what gave me the drive to begin to get healthier and drop the excess weight.
I started Couch to 5K on my treadmill and soon moved my running to outdoors when I felt comfortable enough to do so. In September 2010 I ran my first official race, the Fort4Fitness 4 mile. Then, our baby wish was fulfilled when, after reaching 150lbs, we discovered we were pregnant! In September 2011, at 19 weeks pregnant, I ran/walked the Fort4Fitness 4 mile race, this time with my husband. Later that very same day, we got married, surrounded by our closest family and friends.
I "walked on eggshells" so to speak throughout the pregnancy due to the previous miscarriages. He was born healthy as could be in February 2012. I gained 32lbs during the pregnancy and was so, so ready to return to running just as soon as I was cleared by the doctor after his birth. I ended up running the Fort4Fitness 4 mile race for a third year in a row, with my hubby by my side, as our anniversary run.
I'd intended to run the Fort4Fitness half marathon in 2012, but with said caution during pregnancy, I decided to delay it by a year. So, in 2013, I ran my very first half marathon. Then, on January 1, 2014, I signed up for my first full marathon. 26.2 miles!! I trained all year this year and on November 8, amidst 40 degree weather, wind, light rain and lots of hills, I made the arduous journey and learned oh-so-much about myself, my drive, my determination, my self-discipline and more.
Oh, I nearly forgot to mention all the times I shoved myself well outside my comfort zone this year in the name of growth -- being my own boss, digging ever deeper to continue growing that self-discipline "muscle" and so on. What started out as a hobby years ago alongside my full time legal assistant desk job at the time has turned in to a full time work-at-home job that I absolutely L-O-V-E. Plus, I get to be at home with my children, which I adore. It's hard, it takes so much organization and discipline, but it's so so worth it to me. If there's enough interest, I've been tossing around the idea of some blog posts this year regarding home / office organization, self-discipline, schedules, home time vs. work time, etc. Let me know what you think!
My general aim for 2015 is to continue to build upon the growth and lessons learned from years previous. I'm well on my way toward recovering fully from chronic depression and almost debilitating anxiety. I know what it's like to feel hopeless, desolate, alone, afraid. I've battled through a lot and I'm still kickin', stronger than ever and ever growing stronger.
My big 2015 running goal is the Fort4Fitness Triple Crown. All 3 races back-to-back-to back. A 10k followed by a half marathon followed by 4 miles, my hubby joining me for the last 4 miles. And thus, throughout 2015, I work on speed. Last year, distance. This year, speed. I'll be looking to combine my run training schedule (likely a Hal Higdon one) with my new favorite workout DVD series, Les Mills Combat. I love martial arts-based workouts, and these ones are so much fun!!
I want to shift my eating patterns and nutrition plan to a healthier, more balanced place, with fewer indulgences. It's time to lay off the sugar dependency to get my body to where I want it to be.
I don't have a number-on-the-scale weight goal in mind anymore. Honestly, I hardly ever step foot on my scale at this point in my fitness journey. I did take measurements at the beginning of Les Mills Combat and 'before' photos too. But, what matters most to me in this journey is that I love myself for who I am, how I am right here, right now in this moment. Being happy with how I am now while also being open and EXCITED about doing routine things, such as regular exercise and eating healthy, to change my body to my preferred experience instead.
I'd love to wear a brand new bikini this summer and feel 100% comfortable and confident in it. I'm feeling ever stronger and fitter the longer I stick with my Combat workout plan and I know I'll continue to build upon that as I begin to fuse together my run training with my Combat training. I'm excited for what the future will bring and I feel so fortunate that I get to associate with so many positive people who are working their booties off right along with me to make positive changes in their lives!!
Here's to an AMAZING start to 2015 and health, wealth, love, light and laughter throughout!!
A quick rundown on where you can find me around the 'net:
Also, drop your email address in the box at the top right-hand side of this page to receive future Spark Your Motivation blog posts directly to your email inbox. :)
THANK YOU so much for journeying with me... and let me know in the comment section below what is YOUR general overall aim for 2015?
P.S. I've added a few then/now progress photos in a slideshow below: