{Take it Slow, You’ll Get There}

I haven’t always been this way, you know. Growing up I would not have been the one you considered an athlete by any means. Although I tried out for soccer, softball, basketball, you name it, I was never the one chosen for the team. I was in theater, I was in choir, but I was never the girl in sports, no matter how much I wanted to be.

I grew up around boys. My childhood neighborhood was home to many kids, and I always seemed to relate to the boys much better than with the girls. So while the neighborhood girls were playing with Barbie and My Little Ponies, I was out playing “Smear the Queer” (terrible name, I know, but I was a kid in the 80’s!), “Kick The Can”, “Bloody Murder” (another quality one), “Capture The Flag”, and the list goes on. Although I did have and play with the girly toys, I was a bit of a tomboy who had a single goal of being just as tough, if not tougher, than the boys.

So my non-athlete self still had the drive for competition, it just took me a while (28 years to be exact) to realize my love of fitness!

In high school and early college I worked out like crazy, but not for fitness, to be skinny. My obsession with being thin fueled an unhealthy, low calorie, extreme workout mentality. Working out at that time was more of a punishment for cheating on my diet than for any sort of health benefit. I was thin, but I was also unhealthy, and suffered from debilitating low self-esteem.

Then I just stopped working out altogether. I ate whatever I wanted, drank a lot of beer (college years will do that to you!), and started to gain weight. I continued to gain weight until a year and a half ago, when I decided to reclaim my life, my body, my confidence, and began on a quest for health and fitness. Since then, I have discovered a burning passion for active and healthy living, I love that I am taking care of myself, and striving to be the best me that I can be! Losing weight in a healthy way finally helped me be able to have the confidence to love myself an be comfortable in my own skin.

Why am I telling you all of this? Because I want you to know that if today you are struggling with your weight, body image, nutrition goals, or whatever else there could be plaguing you, it is never too late to make a change in your life. You can make a change anytime, you just have to want it, and be willing to work at it!

I’ve been getting questions recently about how I lost the weight, how I stuck with it, and how I’ve achieved my current level of fitness. My advice? Take it slow! You may not see immediate results, you may want to give up, but if you take it slow and gradually intensify your workouts over time, you will end up amazed by how you look and feel! I promise! Just don’t give up! You will hit a point where it becomes a lifestyle, not a chore, but it does take some time. I’ve seen too many people start working out hardcore, and within 2 weeks they give up because they’ve completely burned out. Please don’t do that to yourself! It’s not at all enjoyable, and is extremely frustrating. Being healthy really can be a ton of fun if you go about it the right way!

Also, cut the crap in your diet! Completely altering your eating habits cold turkey may be difficult, but if you gradually cut out sodas, processed foods, sugars, and try to eat as clean as possible, it will make a huge difference! And sooner than you think, you won’t crave the junk anymore anyway!

So, you CAN become a beast (a sexy strong one mind you), you can love your body and be excited to show it off! Trust me, buying clothes is the most fun it’s ever been for me right now! Please do not doubt yourself either, you are capable of amazing and wonderful things. Especially if you are a mother!! If you have given birth to a child, you can absolutely do anything you set your mind to!

I hope that you commit today to be the day where you reclaim your future. I know you can! Take it slow, don’t push yourself too hard, and enjoy becoming the new you that you’ve always known you can be.

Much love to all my Muddy Mommies, and Daddies, out there! Let’s strive to do great things! And heck, this goes to all of you single muddy folks as well! Make today a great day!

~Holly

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