Growing up I was the “shy girl” who loved school and strived to get good grades. I always had to work hard for what I wanted; nothing came natural or easy for me. I guess that prepared me to always expect to work hard for what I wanted.
I was uncomfortable in my own skin and lacked self confidence. I tried to do anything I could to fit in and never be the center of attention. I loved being outside and being active. I played softball, soccer and baseball.
Weight wasn’t really an issue for me until middle school. By eighth grade I noticed I was heavier than most of my friends and it made me feel terrible about myself. I had an athletic build but could afford to lose a few pounds. I remember my physical clear as day. My doctor told me I should lose some weight and it was at this moment that I really started focusing on my body. I had no idea what to do because I was very active and I didn’t know anything about nutrition at all. Throughout high school I tried hiding behind baggy clothes because I was ashamed of my “over weight” body. My senior year of high school I had my tonsils removed and I lost 10 lbs. It was the FIRST time I had ever lost weight and I felt GREAT! I wanted to lose MORE but HOW? The only reason this happened was because I could only eat popsicles for 3 weeks so I did the only think I knew would work: practically starve myself! I continued seeing the number on the scale drop and I knew I was onto something.
After I graduated from high school I saw a commercial for Tae Bo and it looked like so much fun so I ordered it. I started working out every day and I was seeing some more positive changes in the way my body looked and the number on the scale. I was eating more food but I still didn’t eat as much as I used to in my early high school days. I remember watching an infomercial for Hydroxycut withephedra and I wanted it! I bought myself a bottle and the fat melted off of me. It was like a miracle pill! I had no idea what the risks were and I didn’t care. I started getting very moody and it continued to get worse. I remember snapping at my sister when I couldn’t find my car keys one day and I had no idea what was causing this. I finally realized it was the diet pills so I stopped using them and the mood swings went away.
My weight went up and down like a yoyo over the next several years. I would tend to gain weight in the winter and then not want to buy new summer clothes so I would get serious about my exercise and eating again. I would lose weight and the cycle would continue. I started learning about nutrition and I was following the “diet” and “sugar free” plans. The only part of the nutrition label I was concerned with was the “calories” and diet and sugar free foods had very little calorie content. I was on the eat less workout more plan and it was working BUT it wasn’t something I could maintain for very long which is why I kept gaining and losing. Tae Bo and 4 mile walks while eating processed diet and sugar free foods was my plan for several years.
My junior year of college I got pregnant and I decided to use my pregnancy as an excuse to eat ANYTHING I wanted. I was tired of restricting my foods and I wanted to just have my cake and eat it too! I gained 80 lbs during pregnancy BUT I had my son in the spring and it was time for me to get back on my eat less workout more plan; it was perfect timing. I pushed my son in the stroller every day and would do my Tae Bo workouts while he napped or spent some time in his baby swing. I ended up losing 90 lbs after I had my son, and it happened VERY quickly! I was so happy that I found something that was working for me even if it was still an up and down process.
After graduating from college and getting my FIRST “real” full time job as an Accountant I started going to the gym and I turned my walks into runs. My son was getting tired of being in the stroller so I would make it fun for him and let him listen to his music while mommy ran instead of walked. Faster stroller = more fun for toddler I learned about an online health and fitness community and I started learning about the role of nutrition. I learned that sugar-free and diet were not healthy AT ALL and were actually causing me to CRAVE more unhealthy food! I replaced my Tae Bo workouts with their online videos and I ran 3 miles about 4 times per week.
In 2007 I was pregnant with my second child. This time I was having a little girl. I had learned SO MUCH from the online health and fitness community that I knew I couldn’t use my pregnancy as an excuse to eat whatever I wanted. I had to eat healthier for not only my health but the health of this little baby that was growing inside of me. This time around I only gained 20 lbs. Losing the weight after baby #2 wasn’t as easy as it was with baby #1, even if I had less weight to lose! I started running shortly after having my daughter but most of my workouts were happening at work on my lunch break; thank goodness for an hour lunch break and a gym with a shower that’s for sure. My son was 5 1/2 and was too big for a stroller so this mommy needed a new plan.
In the summer of 2009 I became really sick. I remember it was a Monday in July and I thought I had the stomach bug. No big deal right? That’s what I thought until it didn’t go away. I went to my Dr office and he said it was probably something viral that had to run its course. Week after week I was still in the bathroom more times in one day than I would be in one week! Something definitely wasn’t right. I couldn’t afford to be sick like this because I had a job to be at and two kids to take care of. I managed to get through the day but it wasn’t easy. By week 3 I had some tests run but nothing was coming up at all so they kept sending me home and telling me it would just go away. Week 4 I saw blood. That’s all that was coming out of me whenever I would go to the bathroom so I went to the emergency room. I was admitted to the hospital that day and was there for a week. It was there that I had my first colonoscopy and was diagnosed with pan colitis. I had a really bad onset and there were ulcers throughout my entire colon. My life was forever changed!
Running was no longer an option for me because cardio aggravated my stomach and would cause me to run to the bathroom so my husband borrowed P90X from a coworker for me to try. Lifting weights was foreign to me BUT I was desperate to find a workout I could do without running to the bathroom.
In the summer of 2011 I started doing the P90X workouts and my stomach wasn’t really bothering me too much. I was still checking in with the online fitness community I was part of and I was posting about my journey with P90X. One day a member of the community messaged me saying she was following my journey and wanted to know if I was a Beachbody coach. I had no idea what a Beachbody coach even was LOL I didn’t even know P90X was a Beachbody workout program. I must have been living in a box. She told me what a coach was and also told me I was already acting like a coach by sharing my journey. She asked me if I wanted to become a coach and I said I would like to get a discount on the fitness programs so I would join as a discount coach. I didn’t know what I was getting myself into but I knew it wasn’t going to cost me much to do this so I was game.
In 2012 my health got MUCH worse. I became extremely sick and was told I would need to consider having my colon removed.
I started researching how to heal my gut naturally. I was desperate to heal my body! I spent months researching but by the time I could actually start implementing what I was learning it was too late and I landed in the hospital again. I came out a new me with a saved colon and a new plan of action. I had a new treatment plan to control my symptoms and I knew it was just the plan I needed to buy me time to implement what I learned about nutrition and heal your gut supplements. In February of 2013 I saw an infomercial with Tony Horton (the guy from P90X) and he was ringing supplements from Shakeology across a register. The supplements he was ringing across the register were in my heal your gut program! I bought the shakes with my Beachbody Coach Discount and started drinking them in March. In April I weaned off all of my colitis medications and by May of 2013 I was in remission and off all of my medications. I have been in remission for 3 years as I am writing this on 4/5/2016.
My faith in Shakeology and in Beachbody only grew stronger. I saw my teammates quit their full time jobs because of their Beachbody income and I KNEW that this was exactly what I wanted and what I NEEDED. I missed out on so much of my kids’ first experiences because I was working and when I was sick, I missed out on spending quality time with them. I didn’t want to say no to them ever again. I wanted to be in control of my own time. I wanted to share my story with those who needed to hear it. I wanted to START living my life now that I had my health back because life is just too short and you never know what can happen! BUT there was one tiny problem: I couldn’t afford to quit my job unless I matched that income with this business. So I got to work that year and one year later, in August of 2014, I gave my boss my one month notice!
Why I do what I do and who I am looking to help:
I learned so much about health and nutrition. I learned how to reach my goals in a healthy way that allowed me to KEEP the weight off so that I wouldn’t have to start over in the spring. I am surrounded by a positive and uplifting team of amazing people who are also working on their own health and fitness goals. I have daily support from my team but also from my own challengers who give me the inspiration and motivation to show up for not only THEM but for MYSELF. This was what was missing from my life and now I have it and want to show others that they can take control of their lives with this exact support and community that I am a part of.
I want to encourage expecting moms to take care of their bodies throughout pregnancy. I want to support new moms who aren’t quite sure how to balance being a new mom and making time for their health. I want to share my journey with the working mom who may be struggling to find time to workout or meal prep. I want to inspire the stressed out, working mom who would love to find a way to be more present in her kids’ lives. I want to encourage all moms to teach their kids about health and nutrition from day 1 by setting the example, eating the healthy foods and sharing them with their kids, by working out in front of their kids and allowing them to join in. This will set the tone in their lives from day 1 and will make this so much easier than having to introduce new foods to a 7, 8, or even a teenager who is not as willing to change. I want to motivate, inspire and encourage seasoned moms to START because it is never too late!
If you read this and felt like any part of it spoke to you I would LOVE to connect. Don’t hesitate to reach out to me. This is my passion because I’ve been where you are and I have found the light. I wasn’t able to do this alone though and that is why I truly want to be that support system for you!