My Wellness Journey

Jeff and I - combined we are about
60 lbs heavier here than we are now.
Summer 2006 - skinny legs, chubby belly
I had always hated exercise and only did it sporadically once in college. Luckily I had to walk miles a day as a student at MSU, so it's not like I was inactive. I was and have always been skinny. But I was out of shape. So let me give you the run down of my wellness journey:

Summer 2005: Got married, moved, got a new job - weight in the high 130's which isn't bad for someone who is 5'6.5" but... big for me

Winter 2006: Heaviest ever (145lbs), pants don't fit - ENOUGH IS ENOUGH

Spring 2006: I take a kickboxing class and it literally kicks my ass, but I keep going
2nd 5K - 39ish minutes
Winter 2007: I decide to start running....slowly....
Spring 2007: I complete my first 2 5Ks....slowly....
Summer 2008: Started taking yoga at work and haven't looked back since!

And then I continued to run more and get faster but the weight plateaued around 137. A friend turned me on to SparkPeople, which has a lot of great tools for healthy eating and exercise, as well as online forums for support. I started counting calories and eating healthier and the weight came off!
I'm on the right - finished in just over an hour

June 2009: Ran a 10K! I think at that point I was weighing in the mid 120's.

Winter 2010: Decided to train for a half marathon. Turned 30. Got perineal tendonitis (and possible stress fracture) in my foot and just like that, my half training came to a halt.

Summer 2010: Lots of yoga practice due to foot injury. By August I was just getting back into running when... I FOUND OUT I WAS PREGNANT! (after about 20 months of trying). I weighed 127 when I got pregnant.
41.5 weeks pregnant with Graham

I walked almost every day of my pregnancy and practiced yoga several times a week. I gained just under 30 lbs and gave birth to a 8 lb 3oz baby boy (after 26 hours of labor and 4 hours of pushing).

Fall 2011: I lost the baby weight pretty quickly because I suffered from PPD and PPA and the stress made the pounds melt off. I was also back to yoga and running and eating healthy.

Summer 2013 - celebrating with Stacy
on her big day
Winter 2012: Decided to enroll in a run camp to train for a half marathon but was having significant digestive issues exacerbated by running (which I later realized was because of my vitamins). Stress plus repeated stomach viruses, I hit my lowest adult weight this winter (I think at one point I saw 116 on the scale). I was not very healthy.

I spend the next couple years trying to get myself back on track physically but more importantly, emotionally. I practiced a lot of yoga and only ran as a way to stay in shape and not as a competition. Life at work starting getting busier so I switched from noon runs to pre-work runs and found that I really enjoyed starting my day with exercise. My weight fluctuated in the 120's during this time and eventually settled around 123-125lbs.

Winter 2014: I was in a groove with my life when we decided, sure - let's have another baby! January 2014 I found out I was pregnant again. I felt crappier this time around and did light yoga and little else through the first trimester.

6 months pregnant with E
Summer 2014: The second trimester hit and I suddenly was filled with energy. I started power walking/jogging and doing more yoga which lasted until....

Fall 2014: Breach baby meant very sore hips. That last month of pregnancy was uncomfortable. Luckily the baby flipped and in October 2014 Emmett was born (5 hours of labor, 3 pushes); a little smaller than G at 7 lbs 7 oz. I gained 30 lbs with this pregnancy.

I also lost baby weight quickly because I started almost daily yoga about one week post partum. I also suffered - though not as badly - with PPD and the stress made the pounds come off pretty quickly.

Summer 2014: I was feeling strong in my yoga practice and had begun working on headstand. I even accomplished it a few times with no support from the wall! And then on June 12th I fell out of headstand and fractured a vertebrae. It. Was. Awful. Ambulance ride and all.

This was a HARD summer. I could do almost nothing. Daily activities were painful and I fell into a pretty big depression. As it turns out, breastfeeding can cause low bone density (and on someone as small boned as me with a family history of osteoporosis, I was already at risk).

Look I have leg muscles!
But because I'm stubborn and determined, I stopped wearing my uncomfortable brace and slowly started doing some strength training (push ups and squats), and then some power walking and then in August I started running again. By October I was ready to resume a regular yoga practice.

That's when several of my friends started doing Beachbody. I joined their FB groups and their dedication inspired me to go from 4-5x a week of exercise to working out every day. In addition to running and yoga, I've started doing strength training and cross training exercises. My running pace is the fastest it's been and I'm feeling the strongest I've ever been.

I've also been even more conscientious about the foods I'm putting in my body and I'm trying to get to the point where I eat almost no processed foods. But I love baked goods and beer and chocolate and those will never totally go away. It's all about moderation.

Look I have arm muscles!
January 2015: I joined Team Beachbody!!! Because it's a natural extension of my lengthy fitness and wellness journey. I want to help others through their journey because I know how important that support is. I appreciate that there is structure to the Beachbody programs and they provide tools to make this process easier - but it's NOT a quick fix. Your body will only change if you work.


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