What my Health Journey Taught Me: Part 4: The working mom

Meet Nicole...no, not yesterday's Nikole (though they are friends)...This Nicole, 27, is a working mom of 2 as well but not only a working mom...but an 11 hour  day Vet Manager working mom. The fact that she's found time to care for her family, AND lose weight...she deserves a medal of excellence award.
Nicole hasn't just lost weight...this girl has lost 62pounds!!! Nicole is still in her journey toward better health but so far, I think she's succeeding.

When I asked if she could share with me what her health journey has taught her she set aside some time to really think about what this journey has meant to her.
She started out by saying "I make my own decisions no matter where I am. I decide what I put in my mouth and how much."

I think this is a big step in moving forward with your health journey. Being wise to your choices. Being in control of your choices.
Nicole makes an effort everyday, all day to make smarter better decisions. Are they easy? I doubt it. But she is choosing the nutrient dense food versus the calorie dense food. What are you choosing? Are you choosing to continue to make excuses or are you physically working towards being a more whole and happy you?

Nicole also realized how great she feels after exercising. "Seeing myself for what I always felt like inside on the outside". According to researchers at the University of Georgia, "they found that sedentary otherwise healthy adults who engaged in as little as 20 minutes of low-to-moderate exercise, 3 days a week for 6 consecutive weeks, reported feeling less fatigued and more energized." Check out Ace Fitness for more detailed guidelines on exercise recommendations for "healthy" adults.

I love how I feel after I leave the gym. I remember Iron Woman telling one time, after a great training day for a mini-tri, that she felt so alive after putting in such a great workout. That feeling of peace, and being essentially...it's almost as if your insides took a shower and scrubbed themselves clean. You leave the gym feeling empty, and complete, and relaxed all at the same time. That is the only way I can describe it. You really begin to figure out who are, as a person, as a woman, as a man, as an individual when you start making healthy decisions and realizing just how amazing and strong your body can be.

Nicole also realized that she had more energy to play with her kids, she wasn't just making herself play with them anymore. She does say, like all of us "I still make bad choices, just not everyday, and I know how to do right on my own the next day."
Her biggest hurdle is when she feels like she wants to give in. "Then I realize its a lifestyle change I made, and I do it now without thinking. Why should one choice change all the work I've put in?"

Love that! I am going to start asking myself that when faced with carvings I shouldn't be eating...such as gluten filled sugary desserts. When I could be choosing strawberries over the cookies. Will 1 cookie hurt? Probably not, but it does need to stop somewhere.

Her biggest motivator is "just being somewhere I have never been and seeing my self healthy in all my decision, not just looks."

This is what I really wish I could impress upon everyone. It's NOT JUST LOOKING GREAT, it really is about HOW MUCH you get out of life when you start making healthier decisions for you. Or if you are like Nicole, for your family as well.

She just emailed me today after reading the other 3 stories I've posted and said "I think it's funny how we all do it differently because we all so different." Lindsey with her potentially life threatening allergies, Krystal for her beating cancer, for Nikole who is passionate about clean eating and staying positive, and for Nicole who is very analytical about her decisions. "{We all have} the same struggle, same outcomes, different steps to get there. Big Loser Nikole (She's going to need a cuter nickname) prepares meals and Analytical Nicole does not. (Again...she also needs a cuter nick name). She goes onto say "Not that {preparing meals} is wrong or right but that just doesn't fit into my lifestyle. My lifestyle is looking at what I want, reading it, and, making a decision. I'm a very analytical person so this is how it works for me...again we both know the struggle but do things differently but at the same time can inspire each other."

"We all work towards and succeed at the same goal and can understand and support each other all the way through." That's the great thing about healthy living people. The positivity. You just constantly want to be around happy people. I am going to reference my FAVORITE quote here...
I remember posting about how if you tell a runner "I ran today" while we might ask how far, what your time was, and ask how it went, if you say "It wasn't a great run, I didn't make good time," whatever your excuse is, every runner will always say "Yeah, but you got out there and did it. That's what's most important." These are the types of people EVERYONE needs in their life.

Nicole's biggest motivation besides herself, is her family. "Seeing others succeed and knowing I can to, I just have to take that leap and keep moving whether it's walking, jogging, or full sprinting. I'm still moving, even in my mind and that helps."

Get out there. Move. Go. Make the decisions help you be proud of who are you and what you have to offer the world. Whether you're on a restrictive diet, or working 11 hour days, or preparing meals all weekend, or battling cancer...make the decisions that keep you happy. Being healthy isn't about being a size, it's about being in love with you. It's about feeling the best. It's about having a great frame of mind. Positivity, belief that it can be better, and that it is better.

I'm motivated to go lift tonight! Thanks Nicole for your inspiring...HARD WORKING...story. You are a woman of unbelievable balance.
Thank you for letting me share your story.

For the rest of the journey Check out Part 1: What My Health Journey Taught Me; Part 2: The Cancer Battle; Part 3: The Big Loser.

Blessings Everyone,