Today I have a special guest post for you guys. One of the things I love about growing up in a small town is "re-meeting" people. Someone you only knew in passing in high school can become your best friend as an adult. So today I'm letting Mrs. Emily take over the blog, and I'll let her explain the crazy way we know/knew each other!
Hey Camo & Lipstick readers! I'm Emily, and I blog over at Fit as a Mother... where I share how I stay fit and healthy (and sane!) while balancing a full-time office job, 2 energetic little girls, and all the other things that come along with being a grownup.
Big thanks to Candra for letting me guest post! Candra and I met several years ago, and recently connected on Facebook in one of those "life is funny" kind of ways. What I mean is that we were never really "friends" per se; just acquaintances through her friendship with my then-boyfriend, now-husband's younger brother. I never imagined at the time that we'd connect on Facebook years later and have several things in common (kids, blogging, running). Life is funny like that.
I was never athletic in high school. I was working at my part-time job in a pharmacy, drinking Pepsi and eating Hostess cupcakes while many of my friends were at dance class, field hockey practice, and whatnot. Somehow I managed to stay thin. Until I went to college... I made it through my freshman year without gaining the infamous freshman 15, but by the time I finished my sophomore year, I had easily gained 20 pounds.
Flash forward to my 23rd birthday. As I was chowing down on cheese-laden Mexican food in a restaurant with about 135 pounds on my 5-foot frame, I decided enough was enough. Right then and there, I declared to my boyfriend (who is now my husband) that I was tired of feeling sluggish and tired of being unhealthy. I resolved to make a change. It was that night that my fitness journey began.
I began taking spin classes and circuit training at the local gym at 5 am about 4-5 times per week before work. I turned into a gym rat practically overnight! Right around the same time, we moved into our first apartment and I began educating myself on healthy cooking. Through a combination of consistent workouts and cleaner eating, I dropped nearly 30 pounds in a matter of 3 months. By that point, I was hooked. Hooked on looking and feel fit and energetic.
Since that time, I've gotten married, move around a lot, had 2 babies and much more. With kiddos in the mix now, time has become a precious commodity! I've had to adapt my routine and divorce myself from the gym (gasp!). Shortly after my first daughter was born, I began buying inexpensive exercise DVD's on Amazon and eBay. I have built up quite a collection! No more wasting precious minutes driving to the gym! I just pop in a DVD, grab my hand weights and squeeze in a workout in the living room or the basement whenever I have time.
(31 weeks pregnant, in my exercise clothes)
I also took up running, which has been life changing! It has not only changed me physically, but mentally as well. Running is such a stress reliever and a great way to decompress. It's also an easy way to get some quiet time! I have now run 4 half marathons in the past 4 years, and am currently training for 5 and 6.
Sometimes I feel guilty about spending time exercising or going running, but I've come to learn that exercising makes me healthy and happy, and a happy wife and mommy is a much better wife and mommy. I don't just do it for me - I do it for my family to set a positive example and to spare them from a nervous breakdown!
If I can offer any advice to other busy women and moms on fitting in fitness it's this:
1) Make exercise a priority. Schedule it in and make it as much a part of your day as taking a shower.
2) Be flexible. Life is always going to get in the way from time to time. Roll with the punches and don't let it knock you completely off the wagon.
3) Mix it up. Variety is the spice of life, right? For $5-10 apiece, you can buy lots of different exercise DVDs to help keep things fresh and fun.
4) Get the family involved! Exercising has become a family affair for us. My husband and I often workout together in the living room, and even the kids get in on the action, running in place and doing jumping jacks.
Thanks again to Candra for letting me share my fitness journey! Stop by my blog and say hi. :)