Creating Community Impact

Maria Kang and Mayra Vasquez

Meet Mayra Vasquez. On a scale from 1-10, she is an 11 when it comes to what it means to be a No Excuse Mom leader. Not only does she host weekly meetups and engage her Uvalde, TX community online, but she encourages charity and fundraising events throughout the year. Read below and be inspired by this incredible role model.
When did you become a NEM leader and why?
I became a NEM leader April 2014  At the time I had started and ran a workout support group on Facebook and notice more and more moms of every shape and size had joined along with few males. I started the group to get me motivated to loose weight after my second child.  Figured every time I post I should workout I kept it going for 1 1/2 years and its had been working great!
Saw the moment in Fall of 2013 and kept an eye out to see if anyone was leading the area of San Angelo. After a few months I decided to start one in April because I wanted to be healthier for me, my family and help others.
What fundraising efforts have you been involved in and what were the results?
For 2017 we had many fundraiser and Events
On April 8th we had a garage sale at one of the coleaders home. members donated gently used items that they no longer needed and we held  the garage sale. The monies raised was to go to our Earth day trip to our local state park which paid for the entry fees of the members who wanted to attend and their family and children. It also helped the leaders buy snacks and drinks to take along with us and paid for  1/2 the lunch  at the location.
On June 25, 2017 we held a river cleanup that our local community host that allows groups to clean the sides of the rivers and donate their time to a nonprofit organization.  Since children are not allowed to go we decide to make this as a date between parents,  we had four couples attend and cleaned up more than 3 tons of trash. Money was donated back to our group and we use that to have our second annual family fun attendance at a waterpark which paid for half of everyone’s entrance to the park.
On August 4th our local community and nearby towns host a hotter than hell garage sale   Which is 100 miles along the highway 90  from Bracketville to Castroville Tx. Of gently used items  sale. Starts Friday and ends Sunday.
Through the donation of one of our members we had a really great location with shade . we had members donate their time to be at the designated location and sell the items that other members donated to us.  Money raise was used to pay for the women’s Expo booth in October and buy 10 boxes of 60 count glue sticks for the wellness fair in the middle of August.   The wellness fair is a yearly event hosted by all the nonprofits and organizations to donate back to the children who can’t afford school supplies. Children attend the event to receive items such as backpacks markers glue sticks and other supplies and information for parents as well.
On October 3 of 2017 we attended the women’s Expo and held a drawing.  Leaders donated  a NEM tank & water bottle , meal prep containers and a protein shaker.  each ticket sold for a dollar or five dollars for six tickets.
Money raise was used for Our no excuse mom Halloween party. And items for the dia de los Muertos  booth at the end of the month.
The dia de los muertos  booth was free of charge as we are nonprofit organization. Most events allow nonprofit organizations to enter the events and host a booth without a charge.  The booth consisted of $2 8oz hot chocolate cups with theextras and   a hot bowl of chili and corn bread for $5.
On December 2nd  we were invited to have a booth at near by town free of charge for nonprofit, our booth consisted of cookie decoration.  A dollar a cookie to decorate. It was a great both for the children which encourage parents to stop by and learn more about our organization.
On December 10th a few NEM members signed up to ring the bell for 1 hr each for the Salvation Army raising funds for our community money stayed in the community to help our area.
On April 3rd 2018 we helped provide left over glue sticks was given out to children attending Go Blue Day ( child abuse awareness event) at our local park.
On June 3rd NEM paid for a mermaid photo shoot for 15 individuals. A just because, feel comfortable in your own skin photo shoot. After we enjoyed the river.
How did these charity efforts bring your NEM community together?
Community events help our members understand what goes on within our community it allows them to see how the community works together and where help is needed. Because of attending these fundraising activities I’ve learned that my community hosts a monthly luncheon with other nonprofit organizations who communicate about needs and wants of our community which has help me understand more of what goes on behind the scenes.
What tips do you have for other leaders who want to organize similar efforts? 
I recommend subscribing to local newspaper and signing up for any subscriptions to events in your community. Our Chamber of Commerce, once subscribed , emails weekly events happening around town and in the future. Don’t be afraid to reach out to members there’s always a few who are willing to do the behind the scenes events and not attend the workouts. Make sure you have a goal in place and allow the members to know what the funds are being raised for they’re more willing to help if it goes back to them.
What are your future fundraising/charity plans?
We are currently preparing for the supplies for 17th annual wellness fair and payment for the booth for the women’s Expo.
Our local Walmart invited us to attend the wellness day and have a booth with information about our organization.  Our next fundraising event will be in August for the hotter than hell sale.
THANK YOU Mayra for being exceptional to the No Excuse Mom movement.
Please join her Uvalde community on Facebook HERE!


Christmas Cookie Booth

String and twist Crafts

Christmas parade
Community Resource Fair
Community Resource Fair
River Trash Clean Up

The Heart of a No Excuse Mom Leader

The Heart of a No Excuse Mom Leader

Not everyone can be a leader.
It takes drive, discipline, commitment and work. Above all, being a leader is self-sacrificing. Just like a parent, no one will ever know what you do to maintain and build the household. It takes perspective, vision and faith to operate your world, keep everyone focused, promote progression and encourage connection on a weekly basis. It’s a seemingly thankless job, a role that requires you to seek reward in your internal satisfaction to make a difference. It’s not easy feeling like you’re in separate trenches fighting to bridge your community through fitness – which is why I decided to host our 1st Annual NEM Leader Retreat.
In-between my family life, work obligations and household chores is a special section called, No Excuse Moms (NEM). For the past eight years I committed each week to working out in the park with any mother who showed up.  In that time frame I’ve made countless friends and expanded what started in a little town of Elk Grove, CA to over 350 No Excuse Mom groups in 30 countries. On the daily I communicate online with regional managers overseeing thousands of members from each region. I see workouts posted from different parts of our world on our group leaders page. I read about leaders who are constantly thinking of ways to inspire their community to connect and move.
Every day I am so empowered by these women who are making a difference in their personal lives and the lives of people around them. Their drive is so deep and their passion is so persistent – I know this because I am like them, and they are like me.
We are leaders.
We want to see change, so we became the change and ultimately bring the change to our communities.

Each year we gather for a No Excuse Mom Retreat. It’s a time for us to relax, connect, laugh, exercise, dance, play and refuel our spirits.
In 2017 we set up camp in Miami and in 2018 we went to Paris and in Chicago. Women come from all over – from Germany, France, Canada, California, Washington, Florida, Minnesota, Illinois Arizona, Texas, Maryland, etc. Many moms had never flown or left their kids for longer than 3 hours. We were all scared! At the same time, we were all excited to hug each other – after all, we have been an online family for years.
We needed to refill our souls.
Being a leader is a lonely place to be, whether  you are a hardworking mom, employer/employee, friend or spouse. Not everyone understands your work ethic, drive or desire to do more than the people around you. As a NEM Leader, not everyone will reach out to strangers, invest in other families and be of service to their community. But we do.
It was important to be around people who understood what it meant to ‘do more’. When you do more, you learn more….and therefore, you BECOME MORE.  I am more because of all the women in the NEM organization who do more. Thank you to all our No Excuse Mom Leaders, I can’t wait to do this again next year.


NEM Retreat 2017: Miami, Florida

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European Retreat 2018: Paris, France

NEM Retreat 2018: Chicago, Illinois


Joint Base Andrews NEM Family Day!


Caitlin Mullins, NEM Leader of Joint Base Andrews, MD.
I joined the Ft Meade Maryland NEM group when my son was 7 months old. I had lived at Ft Meade for 4.5 years and didn’t know anyone. I was a new mom struggling with the my new identity and struggling to find the motivation. My father had recently been diagnosed with diabetes so a huge life change was in order. I really joined to make friends (which I did) then I started getting stonger and  more fit and never looked back! I actually lost 40lbs during a New Year New You challenge in 2016 and was the 1st place winner! When I moved about 45mins south to a new base Joint Base Andrews I knew this was something I could NEVER live without. I wanted to bring No Excuse Moms to the ladies in my new community. So I started my group August 2016 only a few days after moving in!
Our group meets formally 3 times a week, Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays at 9am. We often meetup for runs and walks more informally and host “ladies nights” monthly. I enjoy track workouts most of all. I am a runner, I have been all my life. Anytime I can incorporate my marathon training into a NEM workout I’m excited. Also planks. I never write a NEM workout without planks!
From Ft Meade to Andrews I have made some incredible lasting friendships. When I was with the Ft Meade group two of the other members and I really bonded over running. We trained for a half and full marathon together and now are friends for LIFE. We get together even though they have moved away for running weekends. When I moved to Andrews and started my own group it really put me front in center in the community. Women were messaging me, THANK YOU SO MUCH. Military spouses often do not have time to workout. Our husbands work long hours and sometimes deploy for 6months to a year. This kind of support group is crucial to these ladies. Over the almost year with my new group I have made even more lasting friendships. My two co-leaders and I are very close and constantly support each other in and out of NEM. I never had any “mom friends” before NEM so this huge for me.
I decided to do a NEM Family Day because I knew I wanted to do something that would get the kids involved. We had a long winter working out inside at the gym where the poor kids really just didn’t have a lot to do. They are an amazing group of kids and they deserve a day dedicated to them. Also I really wanted all our husbands to meet. Our core group of consistently ladies see each other 3-5 times a week, but we never see each other’s spouses. We held two fundraisers in Feb and March, Chipotle and Panda Express. The money made from that was put toward the family day. I rented a lake pavilion in our community for $50 that included a park, grill, tables, bathrooms, etc. Once the date was set we asked members to bring a dish to share. We even had a member bring a bouncy castle! Everyone really came together to pitch in. My husband and I did some wood working and made a ring toss and bean bag toss, I rented a tug of war rope and potato sacks. And it was that easy. Everyone showed up, I hosted games and everyone seemed to enjoy it!
I proudly wear my NEM gear around town. I get a lot of questions and even a lot of EXCUSES. What I always tell people is if you feel you need a change, this group is for you! Even if you’re not ready, join us and take a look. We are moms who meet up and workout and we all are at different places in our journey and just need a safe place with no judgements. I often have women tell me, “But I’m so out of shape you guys will laugh at me.” Then I share with them that even though I am 140ish pounds now, I was once 200lbs! I usually get shocked looks. I have the stretch marks to prove it. The day I gave birth to my son I was 220lbs! The moral here is WE ALL START SOMEWHERE. My starting point was JOINING A NEM GROUP. Without having attended that first workout I feel strongly I would still be 200lbs or more and still feeling alone and lost in motherhood. It sounds really cheesy but NEM changed my life. Whenever I share that with new people, I get a request from them to join.
Thank you CAITLIN MULLINS for sharing your story with us! You are an incredible NEM leader and we are so thankful to have you! Join her group HERE!



 

NEM Group Spotlight : Charleston, South Carolina

“I started my journey at the end of 2014, I just had my daughter and was at my heaviest of 180lb and in addition to that, I was on blood pressure medication. After working out alone I wanted something more, so I joined No Excuse Mom.  In 2015 I started school and lost focus, and really didn’t do much as far as working out, but I stuck with eating better and lost only 10 lbs. Then came 2016 and I knew I needed to do something more than just eating right if I wanted to meet my goals. So, 2016 I went back at it. I was more than determined, I told myself this time you will do it, and you will not give up or lose focus. In October of 2016 I wanted to improve even more once again, but I needed a push to do so. I signed up to become a leader for my local group and it has been a blessing to me. I struggle with many things but being apart of this group and being surrounded by so many amazing leaders and women have helped me refocus on what really matters; my physical health, my mental health, and my family.
I became a leader of NEM Charleston South Carolina for many reasons.  I needed a motivation in my fitness journey to keep going and to help motivate myself. I wanted to inspire other moms with toddlers, and show them that they can still live a healthy lifestyle while chasing around a baby. I also wanted to be apart of something bigger. I wanted to participate in something that would help me make a difference in my community and I felt like the No Excuse Mom organization could help me achieve that.
The NEM fitness group here in Charleston was just beginning at the start of 2014. It was created by Melissa Frink, and another mom. When I joined, I was only a member working out with them. It was until October of 2016 I became a leader. Since I have become a leader, I’ve noticed all of the changes we’ve made as a group. We participate in challenges and plan our workout sessions accordingly. We meet once a week for a workout/play date at the park and every Wednesday to run.
My favorite form of exercise is our weekly Wednesday run. I’ve discovered a new love for running that I hadn’t realized was there. I also enjoy Melissa’s workouts because she is so creative at coming up with exercises that target each muscle in the body.
To be a No Excuse Mom means to be someone who cares. Someone who wants to motivate other women to not give up and to keep pushing to meet their goals. No matter what size you are, or where you’re from everyone in the organization wants to see you do well. We want to live healthily, we want to be stronger than we thought possible, and we want to live long healthy lives to be able to play with our kids, our grandkids, and even our great grandkids one day.  I believe that it means you want the best for your family, for yourself, and for everyone around you. Most of all to me being a No Excuse Mom means that you are someone who takes health seriously, that you want to help motivate and inspire others, and that you want to be the best you that you can be.
My biggest tip is to just do it. Don’t overthink it, don’t stress you over it. If you want to become a leader, make sure you have at least an hour a week to give to the group and stay active in the online group. To become healthy, it takes baby steps because habits are hard to kick. If you drink a lot of soda and then you quit but happen to slip and have one, that’s okay. One treat or “bad” food isn’t going to ruin everything you have worked for. Know that whether you just want to be healthy or you want to be a leader, whatever you set your mind to, and put effort into, you can do it.”
Thank you Kirstie Messinger for being an incredible leader! Find your free Mom group HERE.

NEM Group Spotlight : Windermere, Florida

“I wanted to help others reach their goals in a healthy way. There aren’t many free resources for women to get fit and can include their children so this was a perfect fit for me. I am very passionate about helping those in my community and about educating others on healthy living.
I started my group almost a year ago, when I moved to Windermere, Florida. It has grown quickly and I have met a lot of wonderful women. I’m very grateful for the chance to help my community.
Many of our workouts include circuit training, HIIT, and couch to 5k programs.
To me, it means that I am going to do my best to focus my energy on my health and the health of my family. I won’t be perfect, but my best is always good enough. I’m a good role model to my daughter and will show her that being strong, healthy, and happy is better than having unhealthy habits.
My best advice? Just be consistent and do your best.” – Andrea
Thank you, Andrea Durant for sharing your story and for being a leader in your community!

Join our No Excuse Mom group online or find your local community now! Do you have a motivational story? Please send us an email at noexcusemoms@gmail.com

NEM Group Spotlight : Slovakia and Czech Republic

I found No Excuse Moms when my daughter was a few months old and I was looking for inspiration to get back into shape. Stories from other moms motivated me to do something and to start looking for healthier options around. I lost all my pregnancy weight by the time my daughter was 6 months old and actually got pregnant again. I moved a lot during the second pregnancy but gained a lot of weight as well. With all the life changes that came to our family after our son was born, I wanted to get back on track and start doing something to get back into my clothes. I was tired of wearing tracksuit bottoms and loose T-shirts and I didn’t want to buy everything new. I wanted my body back, no dieting, but healthy eating and working out. Seeing the changes on my body after a few weeks then months was the best motivation to continue in my journey, that I could get. I didn’t want to stop. Of course, I had a rest day during my training, but I wouldn’t be able just to sit home and watch TV whole day long. I must move. Sport is in my blood now and I am always looking for more challenges. I started running as well and I’m getting ready for a few races this year. And the best thing on all of this is that my kids are copying me while I work out.
When we move to our current place I was trying to lose post-baby weight and was looking for a group nearby, that I could join, so I would find accountability, support, motivation and some friends because I was new here and didn’t know many people, just two moms. There was no group here and to create one was a great idea. I waited to sort out some stuff after moving and for the winter to finish because I thought it would be difficult to get moms and kids out to work out in a snow. I checked with my few friends if they would be interested in such thing as working out outside and was told there is nothing like this here around and moms would be happy to join, so this was one of the reasons behind my decision to start my two groups. Another one was more selfish, though. As we live far from others, I wanted my kids to meet other children and get used to people around and this was perfect for all of us.
We started working out in April 2016 in two locations. In Oscadnica I had a friend who brought others to our first workout. In Cadca, my second group, I didn’t know anyone who will come for sure, but even for our 1st workout, I had one mom in, who missed just a few from our many workouts and spread the word around. Other moms found us through FB and other social media pages. All moms I have on my workouts are on parental leave with kids, so they are happy they could do something for their health in the presence of their children. We don’t have many gyms here and even less with a facility to look after kids. As the winter was approaching I joined mother-toddler club in Cadca where they allowed me to workout with the members. My Cadca members were members there as well, so they were pleased we could continue and other moms joined in. Unfortunately, the weather is against us and I am unable to go there due to the snow, so we workout online twice a week. Even the online workout brought me a few new moms in. We continue online until the weather gets better and we will be able to go out to our usual locations. I am planning to keep one online workout on for moms from other locations in the future.
Most of the time the favorite workouts are full body workouts either just bodyweight strength training or interval training. Every mom is different and focuses on different parts of the body, so full body workout covers all.
No Excuse Mom is a mom that puts her and her family’s health first. Even thought she might have a lot of challenges, daily struggles and other stuff to do, she tries to find time for herself, her workouts and chooses healthier food for the whole family. She plans for success in every field of her life.
Don’t be shy to become a leader. It’s great fun. Just be consistent, at the beginning you might be working out by yourself but others will come. Make it fun even for kids. Take them with you, set up a stand with fliers, so other moms who might be just walking by could take some information about the movement and join you maybe next time. Speak to them if they are watching you, they might just be shy to ask.
Try to eat regular meals, drink plenty of water and limit sugar, white bread, fast food, processed food, and alcohol and choose healthier options whenever you can. One of my mottos is: You don’t need to eat less, you just need to eat better and it works great for me. – Pavla
 

Thank you Palva for being a great leader in Slovakia!
Join our No Excuse Mom group online or find your local community now! Do you have a motivational story? Please send us an email at noexcusemoms@gmail.com

NEM Spotlight : Dallas, Texas

I started working out when I was cleared after I had my son in 2009. I didn’t give it my all though and stayed at my heaviest for about 5 years. I was talking to someone about being heavy and not happy with how I looked and they said to me “Your son is 5; you can’t use that baby weight excuse forever.” I got really offended and then thought about it and realized they were right and I decided to make a change. I worked my butt off and lost 13 pounds and have kept it off give or take a few pounds around the holidays. Weight is something I have struggled with since having my son and I realize that it’s become something completely different than before I had my son. I can’t eat whatever I want now (all the time) and just sit around, I need to be active and eat healthy for both him and myself. I’m not just an example for myself now, I’m his example also.
I decided to start this group because I knew that if I needed as much help and as much support as I needed, that there had to be others out there like me. I wanted to be the changed I wanted to see in my community. I wanted like minded girlfriends. I wanted a larger support system, but most of all, I wanted to motivate others, and push others women the way I needed to be pushed. I wanted to help women feel good about themselves.
I started my group in June of 2015. We grew quickly to 1600+ member online community and I currently have 5 co-leaders who teach workouts in Rowlett, Oak Cliff, Carrolton, and Wylie.
My group loved to lift weights!! We like to go heavy weights with low reps. Circuits and HIIT workouts are always very much liked. 😉
Being a No Excuse Mom means looking at life and making the decision that although it’s busy and most of the time chaotic, you are deciding to make it a PRIORITY to put your health first. We are examples to our children, they look up to us, they learn from us, and they follow us. Our kids come to our workouts and sometimes even join in. So many people these days don’t live an active lifestyle and their kids use that as a path they think they should take as well. Our path is the legacy we want to leave for our children, we want them to be active, we want them to be healthy, and we want them to feel like they can do anything they set their minds to. Without being healthy, it’s hard to reach goals and it’s hard to live the life you want to. Health is what keeps us going, health is IMPORTANT to pay attention to, health is what keeps us around longer and I want to be around long enough to help as many people as I can in as many ways as I can.
Make the decision to step out of your comfort zone! It’s good to make yourself uncomfortable, that’s where you grow. Make a plan and stick with it. If you want to lead a group, find a mentor in a current leader and let them help you, you will flourish. Set goal, realistic goals. Set timelines and don’t give up. RESEARCH!!!

Thank you, Jenna Kirby, for being a great leader in Dallas!
Join our No Excuse Mom group online or find your local community now! Do you have a motivational story? Please send us an email at noexcusemoms@gmail.com

NEM Group Spotlight : Sierra Vista, Arizona

I had never been overweight until after my 4th child was born.  I had a very healthy pregnancy and lost all but 10 lbs of pregnancy weight by 6 weeks.  But then something changed.  My husband was deployed and having a brand-new baby, 2-year-old twins and a 10-year-old I had my hands full.  I started gaining my weight back.  I gained everything back plus an extra 10 lbs. I struggled that year trying to balance life.  After my husband came home from deployment is when I went to the Dr and was diagnosed with Post-Partum Depression.  That whole year and I thought it was just dealing with deployment. The Dr. gave me a couple options.  Get put on medication or find another way to deal with it, by exercise, meditation. I was still nursing and didn’t want to be on medication so I decided to try out the exercise. I joined a gym and started eating healthy.  I wanted this to be a lifestyle change just a fix. I started my journey in March 2014.  That first year I did okay.  I got most my emotions under control.  It wasn’t until spring of 2015 that I got serious. I was tired of being tired and hurting. I wanted a change.  I lost 20 lbs by July 2015. We then moved across the country from New York to Arizona and that is when I found the NEM group. I joined and started going to workouts weekly.  Those ladies became the first friends I made in this new place. I had never even heard of NEM before moving here.  It was so awesome to be part of something so inspirational and just what I needed.  Since joining NEM I got serious about my health in 2016. I became the Group leader here in Sierra Vista in March 2016 and have continued my journey to a healthier me. I am finally at the size I was before getting married but more than that. I am healthy, strong, and happy.  I love that I found this group.  It gave me the motivation and drive I needed to succeed. I love helping other moms reach their goals and helping them along their journey.
I took over the group when our leader had a job change and had to move away.  I was nervous at first thinking I was not good enough, not fit enough, not knowledgeable enough to run a fitness group.  I was still on my own journey.  But I wanted to help others along the way.  I wanted to keep myself motivated to keep going and not give up.  I love the motto No Excuses.
I started getting into fitness and exercising around March 2016.
Sierra Vista is a military town. Our group is very special in that we get to meet a lot of moms as their spouses or themselves get stationed here at Fort Huachuca.  A lot of the moms are only here for a short time as their spouse is here for training.  We have a large turnover every 6-9 months with this.  But in that short time, we get to know each other and grow together as a group and as friends.  We also have great locals that are amazing.  We currently are at over 700 members!  We have about 60-80 active members.  Anywhere from 10-20 members show up 5 days a week to get their sweat on with us.  We have workouts 5-6 x per week.  Most are held in the morning but we do offer one evening a week and 1-2 Saturdays a month.  We also host family days and mom’s night out once month. Fort Huachuca has been great with letting us use the Family Fitness Facility on post. There are lots of great parks we meet at and plenty of great running trails in town.  Along with the awesome mountains, we have to go hike in.
My Favorite workouts are Boot Camp Classes, Hit Workouts, and Kickboxing.  Partner workouts are always fun as the ladies get to know have fun and get to know each other better.  We hold runs 2x per week also.
A No Excuse Mom is someone that will put their health first.  One who doesn’t allow her excuses to get in the way.  We are all busy and all have a million things to do.  Laundry, dishes, work, kids….  Making the time to get in some physical activity daily.  No Babysitter, no Problem.  Bring the kids with you!  One hour is only 4% of your day.  We all have 24 hours in a day. How will you spend yours?
Tips for other moms who want to become an NEM leader or get healthy?
We are here to help motivate you, to encourage you, to push you.  But you must do the work.  You should decide every day what you will eat and how you will be active.
If you are thinking about becoming a leader, DO IT!  dive in!  Take that first step.  You may have no one show up to your first weeks even months of workouts.  But as soon as they do they will keep coming and bring new friends.  Be Consistent and advertise.
For those wanting to make a healthy change in their lives start today.  Take it a day at a time, one meal at a time, one workout at a time. Don’t get discouraged and give up.  If you pick yourself up more times than you fall you are winning.  This is not about perfection it’s about progress.
Thank you, Becca Wickham, for sharing your experiences and being a leader for your local community!
Join our No Excuse Mom group online or find your local community now! Do you have a motivational story? Please send us an email at noexcusemoms@gmail.com



 

NEM Group Spotlight : New Brunswick, Canada

After what seems like a million failed attempts, in June 2016 I started my journey with a new attitude and a new outlook on fitness and health. I started by doing workout videos at home but now I attend a local YMCA gym. Day in and day out I’m at the gym whether it be weight lifting, attending a class, doing c25k on the treadmill, or playing squash on the courts.  The highlight of my story isn’t the 30lbs I’ve lost. It’s all the things I’ve gained along the way; new friends, my amazing local group (thanks to you Maria), my thyroid is in check, I’m mentally stronger than I’ve ever been, and I’m learning not only to take some of my life back but to truly love it and myself.
I loved the world wide group. The closest group to me was Nova Scoita and it wasn’t very active. I was always meeting other moms and thought building a local network and helping others would just feel good and it does. I hope along the way I truly inspire other people and little do all my members know but they also inspire me every single day. Having a group to lead meant I couldn’t quit even if I wanted to and I love and thrive under the pressure.
My group started the very end of November 2016. We are growing at a quick and steady pace and currently have 140 members. I would say we have between 30 and 40 extremely active members who post daily and another 20 to 30 that post weekly. I also have many followers in the group who are reading every post as shown on the seen lists but haven’t started posting yet. My group is 40 percent young mothers who are still home on maternity leave with children under a year, 40 percent working mothers who have multiple children and are just starting to get back into the groove of doing for themselves. The last 20 percent are older moms who are now grandmothers or are raising older children and finally feel like they have time for themselves. Many have gym members but plenty workout at home. Currently I have 30 members training for a mother’s day 10k race that we all plan to run together. This will certainly get us notice here in the province. We are hoping to do a team shirt and plan to use this event as a big advertising opportunity.
Because we are in full blown winter and didn’t get started until November we haven’t held a group workout but we run only challenges as a group and have plenty of events planned for spring. I have met a lot of my members face to face for different prizes and I and Erin have helped a few in classes or in the gym.
Being a no excuse mom means to me that it’s ok to put some effort and time into myself. I’m better for my spouse and my children when I’m looking after me. I refuse to let being a “MOM” stop me from achieving my goals. To me being a mom is just another reason to get healthy and active because I got little people watching me every day and I want to lead by positive example. I’m stronger than the excuses in the back of my head and I refuse to quit.
My best advice to others is to start small. Stay consistent. Find something you love doing so that it doesn’t feel like work. Work on your mental strength and know that the extra weight didn’t go on overnight and it isn’t going to come off overnight. It’s a journey and a life style and although sometimes is hard it’s always worth it. – Amanda Reilly, NEM leader of New Brunswick, Canada

Thank you Amanda Reilly and Erin Tuft for being an incredible leader in Brunswick, Canada! JOIN THEIR FB GROUP or find your local FREE NEM group here.