Every runner has a story. At Sexy Mother Runner, we believe that sharing those stories is a great way to share the gift of running while helping to motivate others.
Today's Featured Runner is Heather. If you are looking for motivation to lose some extra pounds, she's your gal! Heather started running to lose weight and get in shape. She didn't let any of the obstacles that life threw at her keep her from her goal.
Fast-forward about 6 months, I had switched jobs, took a desk job at 40 hours a week, quit smoking, and was in a steady relationship and we bought a house. Sounds ideal right? Not really. The day we moved into the house I realized I couldn't fit into one of my favorite dresses, I couldn't even zip it up. I had nothing to wear, and was far from unpacked, but had my Grandparents 50th wedding anniversary party to go to within an hour. I was very upset to say the least. Believe it or not though, it still didn't quite hit me.
Fast forward another 6 months, I was in the shower and was scrubbing my back, I realized I had developed back rolls. I figured that was a good time to weigh myself. I weighed in at 186 pounds. I had gained over 50 pounds within a year. I knew I had to do something to change. I was so out of shape I couldn't walk up my stairs without being out of breath. For someone who was always pretty active, and had never been over weight, this was hard. I was very depressed.
I was invited by a few girls I knew but didn't really know to try running. I hadn't ran since high school, and even then I wasn't a great runner, probably not even a good runner by most standards. I couldn't run half a mile at a pace most people walk faster than. I still tried that day. I even had to pull over driving home because I had dry heaves.... They invited me to come out again the next day. I begrudgingly got out of bed again at 5:00 in the morning ( I was and still am not a morning person) to go try to run again. I was so sore I couldn't believe it. So I met them, results were the same, but I was excited, the girls were talking about running a 5K. I had run/ walked 3 miles that day so I thought, hmm sounds interesting. So I signed up for one.
Three days after my first attempt at running I was standing at the starting line of my first 5K. The gun went off, we started. It was late June, it was so hot, and there were HILLS!! What?!?! Hills? Where we run there aren't any hills? I didn't realize there were hills in 5Ks?!?!? I was determined to make it, I ran at my own pace, was passed by some walkers even, but I finished that first 5K in over 45 minutes.
I continued to run that summer and ran 7 races. One 5 mile race, and 6 5Ks. I was passed by runners, I was passed by strollers, I was passed by young I was passed by older. BUT I finished every race I started, and got faster every time. Around winter I had basically stopped running, I ran Thanksgiving morning that year, but then didn't pick up my shoes again until March of last year (2011). I was engaged to be married, the weather was getting warm again, so I figured it was time.
I ran once or twice, but then my life changed drastically. My relationship had been sliding downward for quite some time. The date set for the wedding was quickly approaching and I was taking stock of my life and the choices I had made in it. I realized getting married to that man was not the right thing to do. We had not been happy for a long, long time. I called off the wedding, and through a very messy breakup, my two girls and I moved out of our first house, and into a little apartment. Through all of the stress of the changes in our lives, I had lost about 15 pounds. It took about 2 months for us to move out after I called off the wedding.
During this time, I started dating who I affectionately call my running coach, or my trainer. We now live together, with 4 girls, (three being pre teens and one is a 4 year old), I work part time for a local newspaper, and go to school for my associates in accounting full time. In the mean time, we coach basketball, and softball, and find time to run, and play softball.
Since November, 2011, I have been running regularly, and am training for a half marathon. I currently average about 23-24 miles per week. I have officially as of 04/01/2012 lost over 50 pounds. I had to teach myself portion control and to eat breakfast. I used the My Fitness Pal app on my iPhone to track calories for about 90 days. Doing this I taught myself the correct amounts of food to eat, and every once in a while I still pull it out to check certain foods, and to make better choices, especially when eating out. Being busy can not be an excuse, even the busiest of people have to take time to take care of themselves. I have learned that. When I can I do yoga, and I love to go to Zumba when I can. But there is always a way to find time to run. I am far from perfect, I still love ice cream, especially soft ice cream, they know my name at ice cream shops in the area. And I certainly have my over eating days or terrible food days once in a while. We need those, well, I need those.
As of now, I have improved my 5K time from my very first 5K to my most recent, by over 17 minutes. I have improved my 5 mile time by over 21 minutes.
I have a long way to go with my running still, but it's my me time, it's my motivation time, and it's my sanity time. I have an amazing support group in my family, my children and the love of my life. He is an amazing runner, and helps to keep me going when I hurt and don't want to.
So I plan to continue to grow as a person and as a runner.
The most important thing I've learned with my weight loss, is that one day of bad eating won't ruin you, that's not the time to give up, not even two days.
Keep trying, every day there is room for improvement. When you see no change on the scale or weight gains on the scale and you KNOW you have been doing everything the "right" way, don't get discouraged. There were plenty of times I would see increases on the scale, or I would go months without a weight loss. My body took it's time to shed the pounds, but now that I've gone from a 12/14 to a size 4/6 I see the difference. I could feel my clothes fitting differently before I saw the results on the scale. Don't let the scale get you down, but do keep a watchful eye on our body and your weight so as not to wake up 50 pounds heavier a year later.
Heather Before Her Weight Loss
Heather ran her first half marathon on April 22nd!!! Congratulations, Heather! Look how far you've come... awesome!
If you would like to be our Featured Runner Friday, shoot us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org!
We are on Day 11 of our 30 Day Fitness Challenge! If you haven't joined it yet, you still can!