Fit and Fabulous

Fit and Fabulous: A personal story of persistence and determination

Written by: Becky McGraw, Health Fitness Specialist

One morning, 15 years after I last double knotted my track spikes, I stared at the stranger in the mirror. The once taut muscles were now cushioned by an extra layer of protection. Instead of the vibrant energy I once exuded, I felt sluggish. Who am I?

As a youth, life is all about your needs and desires. After college, priorities changed. As a wife and mom, days were filled with shuttling kids, cleaning the house, paying bills, preparing dinner and homework help. By the time I found “me time”, I was exhausted, ready for a glass of wine, chocolate and sleep. Then, one day, I decided enough was enough.

Digging through the shoe pile, I unearthed my running shoes and headed to a nearby park. Wanting to feel the sense of freedom I remembered, I trotted off only to come to a sputtering halt. Bending over; I was in disbelief. I couldn’t run a half mile without stopping. I felt defeated; but only temporarily. Somewhere deep inside, a newfound determination rose. I stood up and forged on; alternating between walking and jogging until I reached 30 minutes.

In the kitchen, I started making healthier choices. Sugar-laden cereals and eating leftovers from my son’s plate were a thing of the past. Coupled with jogging, physical and emotional changes began to occur. The results encouraged me to continue my journey.

Over the next year and a half, a total of 70 pounds was shed. Goals I once thought impossible now became memories – finishing my first marathon, qualifying for the Boston Marathon and completing a 50-mile run.

My rekindled passion for fitness has given me the opportunity to help others. I returned to corporate fitness, co-founded a run coaching business, coach a kid’s running club and became a certified running coach and personal trainer.

As women we are constantly bombarded with images from the media or social pressure of how we should look or act. However, it is important to remember that everyone has their own journey and our main goal should be to feel healthy, strong, and empowered by our bodies rather than defeated by how someone else tells us we should look or live. Our content writers are focusing specifically on women’s health this month.

A few tips if you’d like to start your own journey:

  • Set a goal.
  • Don’t find time. Make time.
  • Focus on what you accomplish and not on what you don’t.
  • Find a partner or a group with similar interests.

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