2019 Region 8 Winner: Ashley Mendez

Congrats to our Region 8 pot challenge winner, Ashley Mendez  for being an incredible inspiration and following through on our 12 week challenge! Region 8 consists of Montana, North and South Dakota, Utah, Wyoming, Colorado!

Join our upcoming No More Excuses Challenge starting January 20th and ending on Easter HERE!!! For $50 you will not only receive an email consultation with Maria Kang, a 200-workout ebook, No Excuse Mom tank, 12-week accountability journal and a fitness/nutrition guide, but you will also get a chance to win $1000 worth of money and prizes.

Congrats to our regional winner! You have $145 extra shopping money this season and we hope you get something extra awesome for yourself! Many of our No Excuse Moms followed our official NEM program, where they used a fitness calendar, logged in their meals, participated online/in-person and overcame their excuses!

Be Inspired by her story here!

My name is Ashley Mendez and this is my story.

Much like many others, I have always had insecurities and self-image issues that date back to when I was a little girl. Whether it was my sisters, parents, boyfriends or the people I went to school with, it never failed that someone had an opinion about how I looked and how I could stand to lose weight. Many years of verbal abuse and me tired of being overweight led me down a path of anorexia and bulimia for more than 4 years. I remember engorging on all my favorite foods and then moments later heading to the bathroom to rid myself of all those calories I just consumed. Looking back on pictures today, I can see there was a physical difference in the way I looked before anorexia/bulimia and the way I looked during that time but I never felt good enough at the time. I was never happy in my body. There was always something wrong with it. Eventually I realized that starving myself and forcing myself to gag was not a life I wanted to live and I needed a change. Enough was enough.

Around the age of 19, I joined a gym and inconsistently did cardio but focused on eating better. I didn’t really have the knowledge of what to eat, how much and what workouts I needed to do to “stay skinny” but I made do by avoiding junk food as best as I could. Of course I had my breakdowns and would run to an entire pack of oreos or the nearest fast food joint but I had grown. I never looked back to the time I was bulimic but instead accepted defeat and said I will do better tomorrow. And since, I have never looked back even 10 years later.

Over the next 5 years, I focused on running and walking outdoors as well as cardio in the gym. I was always moving and being mindful of the food I ate. I got pregnant and had my first child when I was 24. I gained 55 pounds that pregnancy but didn’t let it get to me. After my son was born, I was released to workout right away so I resumed cardio and started eating “healthy”. In reality, I was probably starving myself due to a lack of knowledge of how much I truly needed to eat but I wasn’t intentionally trying to much like during my teen years. I was just trying to be conscientious of what I was consuming. The weight came off very easily those first few months postpartum. I was happy and content with myself. Around my son’s first birthday, I was approached in the gym by a personal trainer. She started talking with me about one-on-one lessons with her and even though I was reluctant and knew I couldn’t afford it, I agreed. I think I did sessions with her on and off for a year but eventually had to stop because I just couldn’t afford it. I wasn’t working at the time but was a full time student and a new mother trying to work her way to nursing school. I learned so much from my personal trainer and it ended up that we couldn’t cut ties just because I couldn’t afford it so instead we became workout buddies. I learned so much from her, Michelle is her name. I gained much more than a friend and workout buddy from Michelle. She gave me confidence, strength and a whole new outlook on my fitness goals. I no longer wanted to be “skinny”. I wanted to be strong and Michelle gave me the tools to make that happen. I am so grateful and lucky to have an amazing friend that was willing to take me under her wing when she by all means didn’t have to.

About 3 years ago, I got accepted into nursing school and was still able to maintain my fitness goals by weightlifting 3-4 times a week and counting my macros. Things were going well for me.

This stretch of time from my first born child to my second born child 4 years later, was the first time I didn’t hate my body. I didn’t want to change because I was unhappy with the way I looked, I wanted to see gains so I could achieve my goals of being strong. I never fully got there though because like I mentioned, I got pregnant with my second child the last year of nursing school.  What a crazy idea it was to get pregnant in nursing school. Pregnancy was fine, some mild back pain but overall it was a great pregnancy. These past 14 months since my son was born have been what was crazy. I graduated from nursing school one month before my son was born and began studying for the NCLEX 6 hours a day for the next 6 weeks. When my son was 2 weeks old, I took the NCLEX and passed. I thought that was the end of my stress and I would finally be able to breathe. Nope, not even close. Over the next couple months, I sent out job application after job application and went on interview after interview in search of my first nursing job. I cried all the time with the stress of finding a job and being a mom to now 2 boys.

I finally got hired in a neonatal ICU October 2018, just 4 months after my son was born. By this point, I had been diagnosed with postpartum depression and hypothyroidism. I struggled with loving my new born baby and myself all while starting a new career in an intense new unit. Needless to say, my stress was through the roof and I just couldn’t find the motivation to add one more thing to my plate by going to the gym and eating healthier. I tried over and over again to set goals and work on achieving them but I could not stay motivated. Goals were set for the New Year but I couldn’t meet them. Goals were once again set for my New York vacation in May 2019 and my California vacation in July 2019 but no success there. In June, I finally told myself to stop beating yourself up. This is you for now, not forever. If you need some time to just enjoy life and not worry about being on a “diet”, then take the time you need.

So here I am, trying not to hate myself for keeping my 20 extra pounds hanging on my hips. Trying to just love myself the way I am, be happy and enjoy my wonderful life with my husband and boys. But deep down I know I can’t maintain this mentality alongside my mindless eating. I know this because I refuse to look in the mirror at myself in fear I will cry in disgust as well I don’t let my husband see me when I change clothes. I can’t keep eating mindlessly and be without motivation and energy. So I signed up for this NEM pot challenge this fall with the goal to gain back my motivation, energy and strength that I once had. I am confident that I can see these 12 weeks through but also give me the motivation and energy to keep going beyond the 12 weeks.

 

Post 12 week update:

Tears come to my eyes reading what I wrote before I began the competition. After the 12 weeks, I can say that I did my best. Could I have done better? Yes, absolutely but even when I fell off track, I got back on without beating myself off or being derailed for weeks. I am not perfect by any means but I stayed determined to do better the next day. I began the competition at 181.4lbs and am now ending it at 167.8 lbs. I lost 13.6lbs and am so proud of that. I feel confident in my body, clothes are looser as well as pre-pregnancy pants are fitting once again.  And just because the competition is over, it doesn’t mean my determination to eat better and workout more have ended. I am still planning my meals according to my macros and being conscientious of what I consume. I am so happy I took advantage of this competition, I can’t say I would’ve done any of what I accomplished over the 12 weeks if I hadn’t joined the NEM pot challenge. I felt so supported and motivated and attribute my success to the group. This competition gave me the motivation and jump start I needed. Thank you all for the inspirational stories and words of encouragement.

2019 Region 7 Winner: Colleen Dunn

Congrats to our Region 7 pot challenge winner, Colleen Dunn for being an incredible inspiration and following through on our 12 week challenge! Region 7 consists of Kansas, Iowa, Missouri, Nebraska, Oklahoma!

Join our upcoming No More Excuses Challenge starting January 20th and ending on Easter HERE!!! For $50 you will not only receive an email consultation with Maria Kang, a 200-workout ebook, No Excuse Mom tank, 12-week accountability journal and a fitness/nutrition guide, but you will also get a chance to win $1000 worth of money and prizes.

Congrats to our regional winner! You have $145 extra shopping money this season and we hope you get something extra awesome for yourself! Many of our No Excuse Moms followed our official NEM program, where they used a fitness calendar, logged in their meals, participated online/in-person and overcame their excuses!

Be Inspired by her story here!

I delivered my 7th baby 10 months ago in January, and developed severe postpartum preeclampsia which ended with a readmission to the hospital in congestive heart failure. Thankfully I recovered rather quickly after being put on medication. I was also at my highest weight I had ever been, both at delivery and postpartum. While there is still no known prevention for preeclampsia, this health drama was a wakeup call for me to work on healthier habits. I have since learned that women who have preeclampsia have double the risk of future stroke and heart disease, and 3-4 times the risk of future hypertension. While I can’t change genetics or my predisposition, I can change the food I am putting into my body and my activity level. There are things I CAN control, and I don’t want to be a victim of my circumstances.

During this challenge I discovered a love for weight lifting. I completed Phase 1 of the New Rules of Lifting for Women program at home. Having 7 kids and homeschooling means going to the gym is not something I’m able to do right now, so being able to lift weights at home and have a plan to follow is perfect for me. I also enjoy long outdoor walks with a little jogging thrown in; most days during the challenge I walked 2-3 miles a day (either with or without the kids). I focused on adding more fruits and veggies to my days, and cut out snacking between meals and after dinner entirely, aside from fruits and vegetables.

I spent most of the challenge dealing with severely low thyroid hormone due to postpartum thyroiditis. There were days I barely had the energy to get out of bed let alone exercise. I had every reason to skip working out and to eat poorly, but I knew if I did that, I would never progress. I tried to find the balance of being gentle with myself on hard days while also striving to be the best version of myself I could.

Most importantly, I realized that I cannot be a slave to the number on the scale, as it’s only one part of my health journey. I lost no weight from October to November but lost almost 3 inches around my waist during that time! If I pay attention to the scale too much, I’m more likely to get discouraged, but if I ignore the number and keep following my plan and plugging away, I’m going to see so many more benefits. The before and after photos and the measurements are what kept me motivated; even when the scale didn’t move, I could see evidence that my stomach was shrinking.

I am so grateful for the confidence this Pot Challenge has instilled in me, and for the guidance in leading a healthier life, not only during these 3 months, but for years to come!

2019 Region 6 Winner: Maria Jackson

Congrats to our Region 6 pot challenge winner, Maria Jackson for being an incredible inspiration and following through on our 12 week challenge! Region 6 consists of Texas, New Mexico, Arkansas, Louisiana!

Join our upcoming No More Excuses Challenge starting January 20th and ending on Easter HERE!!! For $50 you will not only receive an email consultation with Maria Kang, a 200-workout ebook, No Excuse Mom tank, 12-week accountability journal and a fitness/nutrition guide, but you will also get a chance to win $1000 worth of money and prizes.

Congrats to our regional winner! You have $145 extra shopping money this season and we hope you get something extra awesome for yourself! Many of our No Excuse Moms followed our official NEM program, where they used a fitness calendar, logged in their meals, participated online/in-person and overcame their excuses!

Be Inspired by her story here!

I first decided to join the pot challange because I like participating in the no excuse mom activites and I wanted to get back into fitness consistently. Also I wanted to loose some weight before my fiance came to visit in December for Christmas. He was able to get some extra time off and arrived today 🙂 Anyways, I unfortunately lost 0lbs/gained 0lbs. I focused way too much on working out 6 days a week and not enough on my eating plan. On a good note, I obtained my goal of exercising consistently for 12 weeks and my body shape changed a little bit.

Region 5 Winner: Melanie Martin!

Congrats to our Region 5 pot challenge winner, Melanie Martin for being an incredible inspiration and following through on our 12 week challenge! Region 5 consists of Ohio, Michigan, Minnesota, Indiana, Illinois, Wisconsin!

Join our upcoming No More Excuses Challenge starting January 20th and ending on Easter HERE!!! For $50 you will not only receive an email consultation with Maria Kang, a 200-workout ebook, No Excuse Mom tank, 12-week accountability journal and a fitness/nutrition guide, but you will also get a chance to win $1000 worth of money and prizes.

Congrats to our regional winner! You have $145 extra shopping money this season and we hope you get something extra awesome for yourself! Many of our No Excuse Moms followed our official NEM program, where they used a fitness calendar, logged in their meals, participated online/in-person and overcame their excuses!

Be Inspired by her story here!

I debated joining the NEM 12-week challenge. Shortly before the challenge began, my 10-year-old daughter came to me calling herself “fat.” At the time, I was obsessed about weighing myself daily. The number I saw dictated how I felt about myself. I would punish myself with negative self-talk and poor self-care. As much as I tried to limit how much I allowed my daughters to hear, it was clear to me that my actions, words and behaviors were having an impact.

Weight is something I have struggled with for many years. I have spent years with an unhealthy relationship with food and the scale. When I have lost weight, I constantly obsessed over what foods I could eat and how much. It took over my thinking and a significant amount of mental energy. During the last three-and-a-half years, I gained a substantial amount of weight back following an extreme weight loss. A miscarriage in May 2016 was the start of the weight gain as my body struggled to manage the hormone changes and I grieved. I was blessed with two healthy babies following the miscarriage. I love my children and feel honored to have given my body to create them and nourish them through breastfeeding, but it has been hard on me physically.

I started the 12-week challenge knowing I needed to break up with the scale and find a different way to focus on health and wellness. I knew I needed to stop punishing myself with negative self-talk and poor self-care when I didn’t eat well or didn’t like the number I saw on the scale. I cannot say it was easy but I do believe I made significant progress toward these goals. I stopped weighing myself daily. I focused on being understanding of where I was every day in regards to life and what was reasonable to expect from myself. I stopped punishing myself and let go of the guilt if I were to binge on candy one evening or choose to catch up on sleep instead of waking at 5 a.m. to exercise. I started to consider how I could make health work within my current life and circumstances. I started to recognize that I am enough and what I am doing on a daily basis is enough right now.

Along the way, I faced challenges and changes. These led to me reconfiguring how I was living each day. If I couldn’t exercise, I made sure I was more active in daily living. I always made sure to get in plenty of water and healthy foods even if I ate more sugar than maybe I should have. I only weighed myself monthly. I stopped referring to myself as “fat” and defined health as much more than a number. As a result, I felt better about my life and myself. Ultimately the numbers did change – 15.4 pounds on the scale and 11.5 inches overall. These 12 weeks were only the beginning of creating a new me …

Region 4 Winner: Clementina Gomez

Congrats to our Region 4 pot challenge winner, Clementina Gomez  for being an incredible inspiration and following through on our 12 week challenge! Region 4 Florida, Alabama, Georgia, North and South Carolina, Tennessee, Kentucky, Mississippi!

Join our upcoming No More Excuses Challenge starting January 20th and ending on Easter HERE!!! For $50 you will not only receive an email consultation with Maria Kang, a 200-workout ebook, No Excuse Mom tank, 12-week accountability journal and a fitness/nutrition guide, but you will also get a chance to win $1000 worth of money and prizes.

Congrats to our regional winner! You have $145 extra shopping money this season and we hope you get something extra awesome for yourself! Many of our No Excuse Moms followed our official NEM program, where they used a fitness calendar, logged in their meals, participated online/in-person and overcame their excuses!

Be Inspired by her story here!

The first time I participated in this NEM challenge (2 years ago) I was looking to lose weight, find relief to my constant back pain and have a better relationship with my body. Since then a lot has changed, I reached my goal and maintain my workout schedule and healthy food choices and in October of last year I found out I was pregnant. I struggled with the idea  of gaining all the weight again and stressed over having a healthy pregnancy since I had I miscarriage in 2016, but I stayed positive and continued to do my best. I welcomed my third son in June and began this challenge to help me stay focused on the good habits I had worked on during these past 2 years.

My takeaway on this challenge has been to trust my body and take the time to heal from my third c-section. Changes take time and I am in awe and thankful with how my body has responded in the last year. I’ve also found the importance of self care and how it impacts the relationship with family. I have learned the value of food and exercise and how they improve my mental health. And most importantly, I  learned to let go and didn’t pressure myself this time around to be a certain size or weight, I just did the best I could to feel better and take better care of my family. To my surprise I managed to lose 13 pounds and 10.5 inches all around, all while being sleep deprived and nursing my 5 month old.

My physical changes have been great and I am proud to have returned and improved my pre pregnancy size and weight, but my best achievement has been mentally. I am more focused, have less anxiety, didn’t struggle with post-partum depression or baby blues this time around and I have a better perspective on life. I shifted my mindset from wanting to have a six pack and the “perfect” body to having a better quality of life and feeling good in my body.

My new goal is to continue on this path, improve my journey and keep setting healthy examples for my children. I am also aiming to gain muscle while continuing to take care of my back. I plan to keep waking up at 5am to get my workout done and learn more about food, which has had a huge impact in my journey these past 4 months.

I appreciate the fact that I’ve achieved something I thought was impossible my whole life. I could have never imagined I would feel like this at 5 months post-partum and be in the best shape of my life. I am thankful for my kids for giving me a reason to take care of myself and to my husband for supporting me every step of this journey. I appreciate this challenge and the NEM community that continues to inspire me every day.

2019 Region 3 Winner: Sara Nelson!

Congrats to our Region 3 pot challenge winner, Sara Nelson for being an incredible inspiration and following through on our 12 week challenge! Region 3 consists Pennsylvania, Virginia, West Virginia, Delaware, Maryland!

Join our upcoming No More Excuses Challenge starting January 20th and ending on Easter HERE!!! For $50 you will not only receive an email consultation with Maria Kang, a 200-workout ebook, No Excuse Mom tank, 12-week accountability journal and a fitness/nutrition guide, but you will also get a chance to win $1000 worth of money and prizes.

Congrats to our regional winner! You have $145 extra shopping money this season and we hope you get something extra awesome for yourself! Many of our No Excuse Moms followed our official NEM program, where they used a fitness calendar, logged in their meals, participated online/in-person and overcame their excuses!

Be Inspired by her story here!

I joined NEM with the hope of losing weight and getting healthy. It took me a long time but after having my fourth baby and being 70 pounds higher than I should be, I was finally ready to commit.

I had been watching so many inspiring women and their stories and when I saw the 12 week challenge, I decided it was time. The leaders had always been so inspiring and I would take part in the monthly challenges but I was never truly consistent or fully committed.

During the last 12 weeks, I have lost 42 pounds and am thrilled to be over halfway to my goal, but the non-scale victories are the true victories!!  I have been on the weight loss rollercoaster for a long time. I have been up and down numerous times.  Since I have 4 girls, I focus on words like strong and healthy instead of talking about losing weight or fat/skinny. My dream is for them to always be healthy and physically fit.

By eating better, my girls are embracing foods they didn’t before. They are eating healthier with me and willing to try out foods that they see me eating. They also notice that I’m not eating lots of sweets or drinking soda.  They love eating foods that will make them strong!  A favorite activity at dinner is counting up how many veggies and fruits they are eating!

Keeping up with four girls is not easy when you get tired very easily.  When I was at my highest weight, I was quick to just watch them play or suggest activities that don’t take a lot of moving around their own weights and mats and get excited to work out alongside me. I love that they WANT to do it and find it fun. I feel the greatest gift I can give them is to enjoy working out and have it be part of their routine. Often times, they ask to do more than one workout.  The girls did the kids fun run to start off Thanksgiving and my oldest insisted that I run it with her. I was beyond thrilled to not have to make up an excuse and do it with her!!

A few years ago, I took one of my girls to NinjaBe since she is obsessed with American Ninja Warrior. We watch the show and I love that she sees such strong women competing. When we went to do some ninja courses, she wanted me to do them too. I struggled so much that I had to stop. I told her I wanted to get pictures and videos, but it was really because I couldn’t physically do it. I made a promise to myself to get in shape and do it all with her. It’s taken a long time, but I finally feel close to reaching that goal thanks to the leaders and group of inspiring ladies!  And that is what I am thankful for this year!!

2019 Region 2 Winner: Polina Shuminsky

Congrats to our Region 2 pot challenge winner, Polina Shuminsky for being an incredible inspiration and following through on our 12 week challenge! Region 2 consists New Jersey and New York!

Join our upcoming No More Excuses Challenge starting January 20th and ending on Easter HERE!!! For $50 you will not only receive an email consultation with Maria Kang, a 200-workout ebook, No Excuse Mom tank, 12-week accountability journal and a fitness/nutrition guide, but you will also get a chance to win $1000 worth of money and prizes.

Congrats to our regional winner! You have $145 extra shopping money this season and we hope you get something extra awesome for yourself! Many of our No Excuse Moms followed our official NEM program, where they used a fitness calendar, logged in their meals, participated online/in-person and overcame their excuses!

Be Inspired By her story here!

This summer my sweet four-year-old daughter said to me: “mama, why do you look different than other moms?”  “How different?”, I asked. She paused before answering. Even at the age of 4, I could tell she was trying to put it delicately: “you are… mmmm… a little wider…”, she went on gesturing with her little hands… I can’t say that this exchange was a wake-up call, but it definitely was the last straw. I had to stop trying to lose weight and just do it already!

Have I done it? No, but I am confident I am on my way. The main challenge was to figure out why, all the excuses put aside (2 little kids, a teaching job, working towards a PhD, helping aging parents), was I not losing weight. I eat and drink the right things, so I thought there wasn’t much I could cut out. I exercise daily. The scientist in me needed to figure this out! I read (well, actually listened to, during my daily powerwalks) to Jillian Michaels’ book “Slim for Life.” Bingo! Three culprits surfaced: I eat too much of the right food, I do not exercise the right way AND I do not get enough sleep. I spent the rest of the 12-week challenge tackling these three problems.

I started with the lack of sleep, as I now understood that my initial weight gain and consequent lack of weight loss were the products of it—my body doesn’t burn enough fat AND I my snacking is out of control late at night. I realized that the issue goes deeper than I expected. Not only this was a bad habit, but going to sleep late was the result of being disorganized during the day, so that I needed to stay up late and try to finish things up (or more like stress about being behind on things and too tired to be productive). I turned to yet another great book: “Eat That Frog” by Brian Tracy, that helped me tremendously with getting things done on time and becoming more productive and in turn being able to go to sleep earlier.

The next challenge was to get my caloric intake under control. I now track my calories daily and have gotten into a good rhythm with it. I also started using step counter and it keeps me motivated about moving more. Today is black Friday and I’m on a hunt for a good Spin Bike. I used to do spinning at a gym but would like to have the flexibility of doing it at home by using one of the spinning app classes.

I know that my physique did not undergo a dramatic change during this challenge, however my knowledge, attitude and psychic did. I am so grateful for the push it gave me to be on my way of keeping the promise I gave my daughter to be “less wide” and have more energy to play with her and her brother.

2019 Region 1 Winner: Heather Bettencourt

Congrats to our Region 1 pot challenge winner, Heather Bettencourt for being an incredible inspiration and following through on our 12 week challenge! Region 1 consists Maine, Massachusetts, Vermont, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, Connecticut!

Join our upcoming No More Excuses Challenge starting January 20th and ending on Easter HERE!!! For $50 you will not only receive an email consultation with Maria Kang, a 200-workout ebook, No Excuse Mom tank, 12-week accountability journal and a fitness/nutrition guide, but you will also get a chance to win $1000 worth of money and prizes.

Congrats to our regional winner! You have $145 extra shopping money this season and we hope you get something extra awesome for yourself! Many of our No Excuse Moms followed our official NEM program, where they used a fitness calendar, logged in their meals, participated online/in-person and overcame their excuses!

Be inspired by her story here!

My name is Heather and I am 44 years old.  I am the mom of two amazing boys.  I have struggled with my weight most of my life.  Since having children and having so many more responsibilities, my weight has been even more of a struggle.  I have difficulty balancing the needs of my family and working, and as a result, taking care of myself is often the lowest priority.    I often feel stressed and sometimes overwhelmed.   Over the past several years, I have been working on making more time for myself to focus on my nutrition and exercise.  I have also been working on changing my mindset, because I know it plays a big role in limiting me from making more progress on my journey to better health.  I often feel frustrated with myself for what seems like very little “visible” progress over the past several years.  I have been eating relatively healthy, but I have not been losing any weight overall.  I haven’t been gaining weight either, which I know would be very easy for me to do.  I have known that I should track what I was eating, but I have not been consistent with doing it.  Over the course of this challenge, I have improved so much in tracking my foods using an app on my phone and I have consistently tracked all my food eaten over the past few weeks.  Tracking has made me more conscious of what I am eating, and I am making better choices that are helping me lose weight.

I am also making more of an effort to make the time for exercise.  Over the course of this challenge, I was able to exercise 2-4 times most weeks, which is an improvement for me.  Some of the exercise that I have been doing has included yoga, barre classes, walking, and weight training and cardio at the gym.  I am still trying to figure out what works best for me in my schedule and what works for my body and some of my chronic injuries.  I have been a part of No Excuse Moms for at least 4 years.  I enjoy working out with other people and I try to attend as many of the Sunday meetups as I can.  I also have been participating in the challenges in my local NEM Facebook group.  I really appreciate the support of all the other moms in the group.

This challenge has helped me focus more on myself and I have made positive changes.   I am spending more time on planning and prepping my meals, tracking what I am eating, and I am making better food choices overall.   I want to continue to be a good example for my boys and teach them how to live a healthy lifestyle.  I am excited about the progress I have made, and I hope to continue to make myself more of a priority in my busy life.

Diverse Mothers United Through Fitness

Culturally, as women, we are taught at a young age to aspire for marriage and children. However in today’s day in age, it’s far more common for women to go about it alone running single parent households. For the economic standards have vastly improved allowing women to work outside the home.
Aspiring for marriage isn’t a bad thing, but it’s not something we should continue to teach our girls, simply because it’s been passed on generation to generation. The problem with relying on a man to seemingly “fix” our problems by taking our hand in marriage and giving us children, is we begin to lose our sense of identity. Loss of personal identity for a woman is even harder when that woman becomes a mother.
What I am trying to say is, no relationship is guaranteed. Half of all marriages in the US result in divorce, and many women now choose to raise their children alone because they have the ability to do so. The problem with settling in an unhappy relationship, is we teach our children that it’s okay.
We teach them to find their worth in another human being, essentially failing them in the long run. What we should be teaching our children is how to be self sufficient, fostering their dreams so they can establish a sense of self identity. By figuring out who you are, what you are passionate about, you’ll find your purpose in life.
It’s okay to aspire for marriage and children, but it shouldn’t be the ultimate end all goal for anyone. Once you establish your identity, and what makes you happy, it will allow you to find and maintain a healthy relationship. The purpose of a relationship isn’t to find someone to complete you, but add to your life, because you are already complete.
As No Excuse Moms, we come from different backgrounds, but united we stand as mothers looking to improve physically so we can conquer motherhood together. That being said, as a single mother myself, I’ve encountered “mom-shamers.” These are the women who like to put down other women who aren’t married like they are, pointing out the flaws in their life that led them to be a single parent, as if their marriage and family are perfect.
This is not okay. As a single parent, we are exhausted trying to keep it all together for our children, lacking the emotional support of a partner. The last thing we need from other women are the judgments.
I get it, when women get together talking about their family is instinctual, but putting others down because their life went in a different direction is just wrong. In order to have a more inclusive group of moms supporting moms, we need to focus on strengthening each other emotionally as well as physically. Everyone is fighting their own personal battle that we are unaware of, that’s why it’s important to be kind.
As a group of diverse women, No Excuse Mom is more than a workout group for moms, it’s a supportive group of moms coming together making motherhood a little easier for everyone. But in order to do that, we need to drop the judgments, open our heart to those that are different than us, and stop trying to on-up each other social media. No Excuse Mom is an an all inclusive group of women who share similar interests bonded by the fact that we are all mothers, united through fitness.

What Led Me To Joining No Excuse Mom

I think too often we forget where we started.
My fitness journey began when I was a child. I was in just about every sport you could imagine, from cheer leading, volleyball and basketball. Ultimately I settled with track and cross-country.
I joined the military at nineteen, after a semester of college. Maintaining a certain level of physical fitness in the Air Force wasn’t a challenge for me. The challenge came after separating.
I separated after seven years of active duty, as a single parent of two. After the birth of my daughter, postpartum depression had set in. So there I was with a preschooler and a newborn, with no support system as my immediate family resided out of state.

My kids I had while serving 7yrs. active duty Air Force

I longed for a sense of belonging, not knowing my place as a civilian. I chose to use my GI Bill and go to school full time. Now I’m a veteran, full-time student, single mother of two.
I dedicated all my time to my studies, striving to be the best mother I could for my kids but it wasn’t easy. I felt alone, being older than most in college, single with two kids. I needed to find balance in what had felt like a chaotic time in my life, unsure of how to juggle it all.
My first Veteran’s Day Parade as a prior service member.

It was the summer of 2018 when I was introduced to No Excuse Mom through my neighbor; who had just started holding meet-ups in the same location her husband taught my son’s martial arts. When I was approached by another leader about leading workouts, I was ecstatic. I started holding my own workouts in the park on Saturday mornings, creating bonds and fitness goals with other mamas.
I began engaging more online, realizing we are more alike than we are different. As a single mother, I feared the judgments I would receive. Initially I viewed No Excuse Mom as a group for married stay at home moms, and wanted no part of it. When I began attending meetups, and began engaging with members who attended mine I was surprisingly mistaken.
There’s more support with a group of women looking to better themselves, not only for themselves, but their children as well. What I found after separating from the Air Force was a new sense of belonging. I discovered a way to create change in the world, looking to empower and support one another while doing the hardest job in the world, motherhood.
It renewed a sense of confidence in me and opened myself up to more opportunities, allowing me to touch more lives through the power of health and wellness. You can channel all your energy into your job, getting an education, or your children, but in order to be well-rounded you can’t forget about yourself. When one challenges themselves physically, it allows one to be mentally and emotionally fit as well too.
I needed to be in a workout routine, pushing my body to new levels in order to deal with life’s stressors. As mothers it’s important we focus on becoming the best versions of ourselves.
What better way to do it, than with the help of other mothers with the same goal in mind?
Bio:
I’m a 28 yr. old USAF veteran single mother of two. I have my AA in communications, and am pursuing my BA in journalism at Sac State. I write for The State Hornet, and am a co-leader for No Excuse Mom. They say it takes a village, sometimes all that entails is a group of women committed to bettering themselves through a healthy lifestyle. After all, health starts at home.
https://statehornet.com
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