What did life look like before you focused consistently on nutrition and fitness?
I have never been athletic and I have always struggled with my weight. When I was in 8th grade I joined Jenny Craig for the first time and began a 2 decade struggle that included many other programs and countless gym memberships. There would be successes but always failures. Moving to Minnesota shortly before I got married really led me into a downward spiral of eating. Chris and I didn't know anyone here, I hated my job (I had my teaching license in Illinois, but when I moved here you couldn't even substitute teach in Minnesota without a valid teaching license), and I was terribly homesick.
What made you decide to make a change?
The big wake-up call came when I had my oldest daughter Mary Elizabeth. I was so happy to have a baby and was going to be able to stay home, which had always been a dream of mine. However, when I was in the hospital I looked over at the computer and my physical description was listed as "morbidly obese." It was devastating. I had everything I wanted but I was so unhappy with myself. I started Weight Watchers and things were going great, but when my oldest was 7 months old I discovered I was pregnant again. We were thrilled and welcomed Rose in November of 2010. I had 2 girls that needed an active, healthy mother. I rejoined Weight Watchers, got an elliptical for the basement and never looked back. In the spring of 2011 I joined Moms on the Run (MOTR) which was the big turning point. It was through MOTR that I met Nickie. She was teaching a winter boot camp for MOTR participants and I loved the atmosphere of the Warehouse. I have been a member on and off since then - through a 3rd pregnancy and an international move. Making it to class is a priority for me. I bring my kids to class and I will also hire neighborhood girls to come over when my husband is traveling.
What has changed (race times, blood work, attitude, etc)?
Many things have changed for me. I have completed 2 half marathons, my weight is under control - my control, and during my last pregnancy I did not have high blood pressure, which I had experienced during my first 2 pregnancies. The best part is I am an active mom. I am raising 3 daughters who need to see a healthy mom. My before and after pictures show that Chris has joined me on this journey as well. It makes all the difference to have his support. We both make time for fitness and we have a healthy diet in our house.
There is something special about what Nickie and her team have created at the Warehouse. Everyone is friendly and welcoming. I love the variety in the morning classes. I am usually running in at the last minute and I always wonder what time is the first person showing up for this class... my goodness! You know you've found your place when you look forward to seeing the same people each morning, early, very early in the morning.