Glory be to God – I DID IT !! I just accomplished my second half marathon ( 13.1 miles ) * October 16th 2015 * My first was this same week in 2012 ! This was SO hard !! I did it on the back trail and that many trail miles worked so many muscles …. Miles 1 – 5 I had no music player and THAT was a struggle, mile 5 David found one and gave it to me, mile 8 the blisters on my feet started hurting so bad that each step was painful, mile 9 the freezing rain started, it started to rain so hard I could barely see where I was going for 3 miles tripping over rocks, mile 12, thunder and lighting kicked in and by mile 13, I was ready to call it a day, with these obstacles, it took me ((( 3 hrs and 44 minutes ))))
So this is what I want to share, in 2010 pre journey I started at 300 lbs but more important than that, I was low in self love, self respect & self belief and could barely walk a block, after deciding to change my life for life gimmick free by building self love, self respect and self belief on God’s grace, today I was able to accomplish something that felt impossible.
I completed my second half marathon and THIS is why I do motivational speaking and work as a coach to help people rock their best life just as they are in this very moment because I know with God’s guidance, dedication, determination, self love, self respect & self belief WE CAN DO ANYTHING…I don’t think this, I know this !! Slightly over 200 lbs ( having started at 300 + ) I want to share that my journey is not a pound journey and how I aim to help people isn’t about pounds – It’s about rocking our best most happy, healthy life, rocking an attitude of gratitude and knowing that we matter and have value just the way we are in this very moment – that we can reach ANY goal in life with the right plan of action, willing to put in the work, dedication & determination and of course…rocking out self love, self respect & self belief and for me on the foundation of God’s grace. PS it’s +10 C or 50 F in the rain and I am frozen solid, fingers are numb – off to a hot bath
Edit: I should have added, before the blisters kicked in at mile 8 and wild rain mile nine I was getting in 14 – 16 min miles and after that, the fight to keep going kicked in !
Links to these FREE events I run below:
5K / 10K info –> http://sarabown.com/
A window into my 2015 journey & Progress – I’ll come update this on occasion 🙂
April 28th, day 58 update
Today April 28th makes day#58 since re introducing high intensity workouts which started with me doing running, free weight, sits ups, leg work, push ups, squats & lunges in my basement along with fast walks with the family outside. After having Andrew who is now 17 months, I started working out as soon as I recovered from my c section but it certainly wasn’t days in a row of high intensity. I did make sure I was doing something which I am happy about, as I have a constant goal to be living my journey, no diets just loving and rocking life the best I can – about 65 days ago Andrew was fully weaned from nursing and I made the choice to hit my workouts hard again, I was feeling sad with that chapter being closed but believe in life, so much of our joy and happiness fully depends on how we choose to view things and I made the choice to push my own abilities in this leg of my journey, open a new chapter with a grateful heart.
SOO today, today is day 4 since being able to hit the trail behind my home, Odie and I were able to rock 2 miles this am which makes 11 run/walk/jog miles total so far over the last 4 days and I have to be honest..the trail has mud, sinking sand and ice as it thaws out and it’s hard !! I have been running in the basement on a flat floor so I have experienced some shin splints which hasn’t happened in forever but I’m pretty sure it’s just the adjustment, having to jump over sticks, balance on ice and such takes adjustment, I’m also training a puppy to run beside me and it’s hard, I feel awkward, after an entire winter off, I feel like a baby learning to walk and it has moments of feeling like it sucks and it’s awesome all at the same time…sucks because of the hard and awesome because of the hard, the hard is what provides such a sense of accomplishment along with the amazing endorphin’s – there is a great sense of life joy that comes from doing what we need to do to live our best life and that makes the hard, the awkward worthwhile..so here I am, working on being my best me, something I will forever be working on and adjusting along the way. Today makes day #58 since this new re commitment with 51 days of workouts under my belt YES !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
April 10th – 30 day update
Today is my #Day30 since re introducing high intensity workouts since having our third son 16 months ago. I have done one or another since beginning my journey late 2010 but this is the first time I have committed fully to both running & weights mixed with intervals of crunches, leg work, push ups, jump rope, squats & lunges. In 30 days, I’ve got in 27 workout days for give or take 60 – 90 minutes long and I’ve reached a new level strength wise, I feel stronger both mentally and physically, I’m down inches and went from wondering if I would ever really run again to feeling like all is possible. Along with this, I completely did a focus on my food making sure everything was as it should be along with making sure I’m rocking my water.. For full details of where I am and what I’m doing you can read here — http://sarabown.com/my-non-scale-victories-and-progress-for-2015-sara-bown-use-it-2-lose-it
Workout wise, I also have 3 children, one is a baby so no matter what, my day is full and I need to be on my game, these workouts have left my body sore…really sore, making it hard to bend, get up and down the stairs lol and sometimes during weight training, the burn makes me want to cry but with this, comes a deep feeling of reward, each time I push harder, I see a clearer vision of all that is possible in my capabilities. When it hurts to bend down and pick up my baby, I think of how it will feel in the warmer months to have wonderful family adventures feeling confident in my skin, knowing I’m giving my all to my health and I remind myself how I felt at 300 lbs out and about fully clothed in black, feeling like I would die from the heat. I remind myself that my life path is my choice and pre journey I chose fear and NOW I choose living life to the fullest, facing my fear, sharing it with others and overcoming because the reward is living my authentic life and worth all the work it takes to make that happen. As the warmer weather moves in, my workouts / activity will change, I’ll keep up weights with intervals but my cardio will just depend on where my free spirit takes me that day because this isn’t a diet, it’s simply me rocking my own life the best I can and making sure I love the ride. I’ll make sure with whatever I do, I get a nice, high calorie burn so I keep feeling strong. I plan to do update pics in 4 more weeks & feel excited to share updates but for now, want to keep the focus on the journey itself and how amazing it FEELS on the inside to rock amazing life goals… about 35 days ago, I felt sad that our baby was done nursing, I still feel a tinge of pain when typing but I made a choice to take that new season in my life to up my own personal goals and push myself to a new level. I have never been off my journey since starting in late 2010, there have just been different stages and in each stage I found a way to do and give my best and to also call myself out if I wasn’t and in truth, I do this for me, my family and for you because it’s amazing to show the power of our choice and all that can be accomplished when we just believe !! #SelfLove #SelfRespect & #SelfBelief ‘ Sara
April 6th Update
Just a little update from yesterday which was Easter Sunday and also the day we had a family birthday party for two of our boys – I found myself last night running laps in my basement and feeling strong, like really feeling my groove in running and this made me feel really happy because 26 days ago before I started running again I felt like maybe running wouldn’t be my thing anymore. After giving birth to our third son I just wasn’t sure as I ran off and on since and with such a long, non running winter because of the deep snow outside, no treadmill inside I was feeling like running was almost a distant memory. However, with the winter stove wood that was stacked in the basement almost gone, there was enough room to do laps, I started and really in about a week, the running felt good, each day I felt lighter on my feet, more capable, more determined and more proud – I feel like I’m running towards a goal that I may have allowed slip through my fingers had I not found a way to break from the doubts and run into the possibilities ! Running is something that reminds me of all my physical fitness possibilities, I don’t need to be fast or to win a race, it’s all about me doing my own best – we all have something like running, something that when we do it, we are reminded of true capabilities, how we can push for new levels and acheive success if we are only willing to start 🙂 I also need to add that the weights work I do compliments this perfectly and my Fitbit HR is a wonderful tool because I LOVE seeing my stats !!
April 3rd 2015
Today I wanted to share why, even after all this time of being on my journey, the last 23 days have been such an accomplishment for me 🙂
First, it shows me that I truly have changed for life, pre 2011 when hard transitions came up, I turned to food, I turned to food with so many emotions and it always meant I would reach for food to cope, lose more self worth and gain weight – so each time after 2011 I’m faced with a life transition where I make the choice to turn to loving and looking after myself, well it feels good, knowing I have changed my thinking, my inner emotions, my self love, self belief and the way I respect myself means most as it’s the foundation everything else sits on !
Feb 2013 I found out I was pregnant and very early on, I was put on low activity which meant no weights or running, these things were big parts of my journey and it was hard to find my balance without these things mixed with constant sickness, c section after but I adapted the best I could at the time and pushed forward and really up until about 27 days ago, my workout of choice has been cardio with running mostly in the warmer months as the snow, no treadmill and basement filled with winter wood really squashed the possibility for workouts I love. Ultimately, 23 days ago I decided to really jump back into high intensity, to re add running ( winter wood almost gone, I have room to run circle laps around an old brick chimney in my basement ) to also re add weights work and do this in intervals with crunches, leg work, push ups, jump rope, squats and recently added scissor lunges ( that’s what I’m calling them LOL ) I did a complete clean up of my food, kicked up my water and I’m rocking the weights and this is huge because I am now a mommy to 3 boys, I have less time, more responsibility and I have NEVER added weights and running together with intervals of other exercises mixed in, my body has been HURTING lol but honestly in the best of ways.. It’s also worth mentioning that the scale has barely moved ( this ALWAYS happens when I add weight work at first ) and all my clothes are big. Pants I bought 3 weeks ago are now loose and tops I bought that were tight on purpose knowing I was starting with the high intensity again are now either fitting or very loose. In another few weeks the scale will move, it always does, not that it even matters really but I’m adding this because I know many get discouraged and all the facts are there that if you use weights / strength train, your body will trade fat for muscle, they weigh the same but muscle takes less room so you will drop inches, gain muscle / strength and really add optimal health !!
What’s to come ?? Maybe I’ll do another 21 days…eating, drinking and emotion work goals NEVER change, they are constants in my life and if you go back to day one ( scroll down ) you can read more about that means to me. For exercise, since the snow is still deep I will most likely keep up this high intensity workouts ( running / weights / crunches / leg work / push ups / jump rope / lunges and squats for 5 days a week, Zumba once a week and maybe give myself a rest day ( if needed ) even on rest days, I’ll push to be more active in my day and will only take it off if I need it but when working with weights combined with the running, we are working so much that if a day off the high intensity is needed, I’ll take it and would most likely be a Tuesday. Of course, my main plan is to rock something and life so nothing is set in stone, when it’s nice outside a lot of my workouts will happen in the great outdoors !
So here is today’s update, hope you find these updates helpful 🙂 ~ Sara
April 1st – I reached my 21 day goal !!
About 26 days ago I finished nursing our baby, having 3 boys and leaving this stage behind was hard, I felt sad about the transition – 21 days ago I made a choice to practice gratitude for memories made and to begin a new leg of my journey. I decided to re introduce running and weights ( before warm weather arrives ) in interval form with crunches, leg work, push ups, jump rope, lunges & squats and I rocked out 28.6 hrs with 57 running miles accomplished – running miles around an old brick chimney in my basement shown in photo.
I also decided to focus in on my food & water both of which have been spot on and of course it’s always important to rock the emotions.
My 21 goal has been reached and I’m happy to keep rocking on !! I began my journey in late 2010 and have been on my journey since ~ Sara
March 31st 2015 – #Day20 update since re introducing running and weights and doing this with intervals that currently include running, crunches, leg work, push ups, free weights, jump rope and squats – Thursday is a high intensity Zumba day.
** Today as I type this, I’m reflecting on how sharing on a facebook page and to truly share what you want to be received can be a challenge, in the sense of always wanting to share a whole picture / story / accomplishment. Each day, new people ( page friends ) are coming to the page and as you post, there is no real background story which is why I decided to keep updating this blog post so there would be history included. Today makes day #20 since re committing to running and weights and based on recent photos and my changed emotions, my positive attitude – this may seem like an easy transition for me, but in truth, I think our entire journey will always hold challenges where moving forward will require great strength, dedication & determination with self love, self respect and self belief.
When on a journey for any length of time, we fully appreciate how ” hard ” exists on both sides of the spectrum and how we must ultimately make the the choice to choose our hard – I remember living a life where I wished I was living better, more authentically and this wasn’t an easy way to live, always feeling self disappointment, judgement, feelings of despair over all the above. I now know this other side that I’m currently on, making sure I give my all and do my best to live my most authentic life, I’m not describing a perfect life by any stretch, there are still moments of struggle that I overcome. However, this life is perfectly mine, filled with thousands of little moments of progress from living life this way, doing what is required isn’t always easy, but the difference is, it sure is rewarding, exciting and life changing which makes all hard worth while.
I started my journey before having my facebook page and before I could even voice my truth that I had reached the 300 lbs range, that only came recently. Addicted to food for years, not honoring myself, using poor self talk, completely consumed in what others ” may ” have felt about me along with a great amount of stress – this all occupied too much of my time and left me sad, wanting more, knowing I had more to give and offer my family and the world. Since that day in November of 2010 when I decided to change my life, so many things have happened, I had an awakening in my heart and soul that has never left, of all the changes, this is the one I hold most sacred as my changed inside emotions make everything on the outside possible. God never allowed me to believe I couldn’t, it just took time and patience. I also have learned that I always was and always will be good enough, deserving, capable both pre journey and now. To do the things I did at 300 lbs to show my family love and to be active with them took courage, I didn’t see it at the time but I do now and fully realize how amazing we ALL are, in all the seasons of our life.
Now, in this new leg of my journey, I am like so many, fighting for what I want, pushing to reach new levels, honoring my life and abilities by looking after myself the best I can. Andrew is now 16 months and all along, I have kept up so many changes and also adjusted to challenges I’ve met along the way, aware that I didn’t want go back to old habits and I feel pride, great pride in this. Now, when I workout in my basement, there are times I’m pushing myself close to tears and the next day when I bend to lift baby Andrew, I feel the outcome from my workout the night before everywhere in my body but this feeling brings a feeling of being BEYOND alive – I feel joy, happiness and pride to know that the girl who decided to change her life in 2010 wasn’t a fluke, that when I got pregnant and was faced with low activity rest unable to run or do weights and when I recovered from my c section and kept my workouts mostly cardio related up until Andrew was weaned about 3 weeks ago that it didn’t stop, I didn’t stop, I adjusted and now I am re adjusting and making things happen where I feel stronger, not only physically but mentally, knowing that I have never given up since starting and knowing I can continue to push forward through the hard makes me feel BLESSED, alive, proud and worthy, worthy to be a role model for my children and to have the work and facebook page I have, to help others because I know what makes up a life journey and I KNOW that the only way we can fail is if we decide to fail ( decide to give up ) because there is no failure in a person who refuses to give up and always manages to find their footing.
So in conclusion until my next update, I am LOVING this leg of my journey, I’m sore but feel amazing and excited because life is a gift and I’m living not regretting <3 Ultimately, 20 days ago my goal was to reach 21 days of consistency with exercise, water, eating and of course rocking great self inner work and I’m so proud to be one day away from that, I have exceeded my expectations here and also gained awareness that this was truly a needed re set…mamma got a Little too comfy hehe It amazed me how on Day 1 the weights were killing me Bahaha and how just 4 push ups seemed impossible and how only 20 days later, I’ve already needed to adjust my workout 2 – 3 times to support growth and progress. I know my workouts will look different once the snow is gone and I can get outside and I’m glad I took on this big goal for my reset which I am going to continue.
Just know when I’m posting my accomplishments and workouts, they weren’t easy – I often have people ask me how to make it easy or when will it get easier and my view is that no matter the stage any of us are in, reaching new levels takes real commitment and strength both inside and out along with dedication and theses challenges will always have their hard but it’s the outcome we’re left to bask in that makes it all worthwhile.
Never forget, we, are in the trenches together !! ~ Sara
March 25th 2015: First day of this blog with a complete window into my journey to date
Pic below are PRE JOURNEY IN 300 LBS RANGE
* Non Scale Victory ! Three weeks ago I purchased black dress pants that fit perfect, correct length and all. Today, two weeks into doing intervals, where I re introduced weights and running, to make them fit so they didn’t feel like they would fall down, I had to pull them up this high…this is in two weeks and why I’m not on a scale journey but yet a journey where my goal is to feel my best by giving my best, enjoying all these changes along the way. OHHHH and our doggy girl Holly wanted to say hi ….wearing my husbands slippers this am, as you can see, they fit great lol !! ( April 3rd/15 edit ) I have since learned that these pants ARE summer crop style pants and when I bought them I could not pull them high enough to fit )
I also really need to give a shout out to my Fitbit HR because this gives constant heart rate, I find myself pushing to do more, I LOVE seeing what I’m doing, even if not 100% accurate, it gives a great picture and can see that in two weeks, my resting heart rate has gone done which is awesome to see and it proves no matter how far you’ve come in journey, you can always go further and this truth is SO exciting !
~ Sara Bown