Friday, September 7, 2012

Fitness Friday: A New Weekly Link-Up

Happy Friday friends!! I am excited to introduce a new segment on my blog called


I know the name is nothing original, but it just works so well!!

It's no secret that I have attempted many weekly segments on this blog in the past. Usually, these segments stem from an interest I have or a new goal I've set. I find that when I start posting about something a lot...it only makes sense to condense it to one day so that I don't bore everyone who could care less about the subject. Now you know that if you could give a crap about fitness...you may just want to skip my blog on Fridays. Ha!

But if you DO want to share fitness goals, healthy recipes, exercises routines, etc...then by all means...JOIN ME!!

There really isn't going to be a specific format for this weekly segment. You can talk about anything health or fitness related and then just cheer each other on! I know so many ladies who are doing the Couch25K program and I love reading about their journey. I know I have several other friends that are trying hard to lose weight, to get in shape for their wedding, lose baby weight, etc. and since the Facebook Group I started was{is} so much fun...I thought a blog link-up could be just as great!!

So without further ado...here is my very first Fitness Friday post!

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I think it only makes sense to start with where I am in my fitness journey. Other than being on the dance team in college, I've never been very athletic. I never understood how I could be coordinated enough to follow the steps of every dance routine I've ever learned {and still be able to do some of them 10 years later} but I could never run and dribble a basketball. Or swing a bat and actually hit a ball. Or serve a volleyball OVER the net. I tried a LOT of sports when I was a kid, but just never found my groove. So when I made the Pom team in junior high...I stuck with it and never looked back!

And being active in college kept those pesky pounds off. I always felt healthy and in-shape so weight was never an issue.

That is until I graduated from college, packed on a good 15 pounds in grad school and another 20 during my first year in the career world. I wasn't exercising, I wasn't eating right, I was stressed all the time and before I knew it, I was a solid 35 pounds overweight. And that was also right around the time that I met Eric :-)


Now when I look at this picture, I don't think, "GAH!!! What a fat ass!" because that's not how I felt at the time either. I just knew that I was carrying extra pounds that made me feel really self-conscious and uncomfortable in my clothes. I knew things had to change...but it wasn't until Eric proposed that I found the motivation I was looking for! I wanted to wear a bikini on our honeymoon and feel good in it. I wanted to get the extra weight off and get into a better routine.

And that I did. I signed up for Weight Watchers in March of 2006 and by July of that year...I was at my goal weight. I proudly wore my bikini on our honeymoon and never felt better!


But then life happened again. We bought our first house, got comfortable and settled, and then I got knocked up. For most of that pregnancy, I didn't gain the weight I thought I would. I like to think that I looked like this the whole time...


But in reality I gained 40 pounds and the last two months I really looked more like this. 


My weight was more in-check the second time around with Blake, but I still put it on.


After Blake, I was more desperate than ever to get healthy and in-shape again. But I didn't know where to start!! Sure I could start eating healthy, but I knew I was going to need more than that. I needed to work out!

Sadly, there weren't many dance teams looking for a 30-something mom that hadn't done a pirouette in the better part of a decade. Damn it!! 

So I went in search of something else and somehow, I came across the Couch25K program and the rest is history. In the summer of 2010, I completed the entire program and in September of that year, I had lost the baby weight and ran my first 5K!


Running has changed me in so many wonderful ways. I've set and accomplished so many goals that I NEVER would have dreamed of doing. If you would have told "College Jen" that she would run a half marathon in her 30s, she would have laughed her butt off. But here I am...one medal hanging in my office and hopefully a second to come in October :-)

Running has become such an important part of my life and all I can do is pray for the health and ability to keep on doing it for years to come :-)

But now that I have had 2 years of experience in the running world, I know that running alone is not enough. To really be strong and healthy you have to cross-train and add new things to your routine. I had never done that before and I see now, after only 1 month of doing this, that cross training is the key to success. And getting fit.

So that's where my journey continues. I can't just run forever. I need to change my eating habits and set a good example for my kids. I need to find a way to make fitness a family affair. I want us all to be supportive of each other's individual hobbies, which means cheering Eric on at his softballs games, him and the kids being at my finish lines, and of course supporting Addie and Blake in all their sports and activities. We want to be present parents and encourage them to try new things, even though deep down I hope Addie is a little dancer like her mama. Ha!

The fact is...I can't do all this alone. I am someone who needs inspiration and motivation and sometimes the only way I can find it is from the support of others. I love my running buddies, my yoga buddies and my LGN buddies. They keep me moving and accountable and I hope that this weekly link-up will do the same thing. I hope it's a place where we can all check in, motivate and encourage each other and best of all...share a few good laughs.

So join me friends!!!! Link up and tell your fitness story this week!! Where are you in your journey? What goals have you set and why? Let's get to know each other :-)

Happy Fitness Friday!

12 comments:

  1. Awesome post! I need to know something. How do you schedule in your running time? I have a jogging stroller but it's just so cumbersome to job with that thing!

    I could get up before the hubs leaves for work but I have this unreasonable fear of running outside in the dark. Scary people are outside!!! Especially in the dark!

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    1. I'm in the same boat! The dark creeps me out too with people and.....dogs. :)

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    2. Veronica, I honestly have to get really creative with my run schedule. One thing that makes it easier for me is having a treadmill. We got it 2 years ago when I started running and put it in our basement where the kids play area is. When I can't get outside for a run because of weather or lack of light...I run down there. The kids are old enough now to just play while I run. BUT...I absolutely loathe the treadmill and do everything I can to get outside instead. My husband's work schedule is totally random, so I run early before he leaves, or I run in the evening as soon as he gets home. My long runs are always on the weekend so I know he is home. It's tough honey...but if you can get creative and take the jogger when you have to...you can make it happen. I promise!!!

      And Brooke...LOL. I can't stop thinking about that dog chasing you. SO SCARY!

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  2. I just might join you on this as I do not want to gain the post marriage pounds :)

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    1. I would love it if you joined in Tara!!! I know there are already a lot of Friday link-ups but whenever you feel yourself slaking a bit, join in!!! PS...still DYING to see these wedding pics!!!

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  3. I saw where you posted a run with a 9 minute mile.... You little Flo Jo! I'll be joining next week! :)

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    1. Oh Holly I am so glad you will be joining in!!! I did run a 9:20 average pace for the 3 miles I did yesterday which made me happy. If only I could keep that pace for another 10 miles I would have one killer half marathon time. Hahaha!!

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  4. This is so great, Jen!! I've been planning out a series of posts about my fitness journey {which is still very much ongoing}, so I see myself definitely linking up with you in the future! As for today, I knew I wanted to get some exercise so I talked the boys into walking to pre-k. {A little less than a mile.} The 4 year-old did great, but I had to carry the 3 year-old on my back a couple of times, but I figured that was just more calorie burning for me! :)

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  5. I love this idea, Jen! I can't wait to participate! You are right about cross training. It really makes all the difference!

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  6. I will definitely try and link up next week! As far as the comment about getting chased by animals...I've been chased by them all. I've even been attacked by a goose. It is hilarious to think about now but when it happened it scared the sh*t out of me!

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  7. Clearly I missed linking up on Friday due to a home project conundrum but I am SO looking forward to this! I love sharing tips and tricks and reading what works for others as well. You are the Godmother of the LGN challenge and well, that's pretty damn amazing!!!

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