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Motivating Mom: Mother of Two, Annette-What a Babe!!

Happy Monday Moms! Meet Annette. Annette looks amazing(duh look at her pics!), but not only has this babe lost 75 pounds, she also has found an amazing support system of other moms and her kids are having fun while she works out! Sounds pretty fantastic to me!

*Tell us about yourself*

I am a 35 year old stay at home mom with two children. My son is almost 3 and my My friend and neighbor introduced me to Stroller Strides when my daughter was born. I work out with the Arlington/Alexandria location in Northern Virginia.

*You look amazing, how much weight did you lose and how long has it taken you? When were these photos taken?*

Thank you! I have lost 75 pounds since the birth of my daughter in January of this year. I had gained 66 while I was pregnant with her and did not work out at all. I had a C-section so I had to wait 8 weeks to start exercising again. When she was 11 weeks old, I began Stroller Strides. First, I went three times a week, but after a month, I bumped up to five times a week. The first picture was taken in the hospital, four days after my daughter was born. The second picture was taken mid-late summer once I reached my goal.

*What motivated you to make a change?*

Being a mother is the best job in the world, and also the hardest. It’s mentally, emotionally, and physically challenging. After my daughter was born, my husband and I made the decision for me to stay home with our children and not go back to work. It was a dream come true. I had always wanted to be a stay at home mom, but I had no idea how physically exhausting it was. Working on little to no sleep each day making sure my children have a happy, healthy childhood is my first priority. I knew that I needed to be a healthy example for them. It warms my heart when my son asks for more broccoli at dinner or wants an apple for snack. I’ve worked hard introducing healthy foods to him and once my daughter is fully on table food, I will do the same for her. Stroller Strides is part of our daily routine and I hope that they come to love exercise as much as I do someday.

*Here is the question our moms are dying to know the answer to: What are you doing to get/stay so healthy!? What program did you follow (body back, stroller strides, etc). We want the nitty gritty!*

I am pretty regimented. I eat healthy during the week, but allow myself to splurge a little on the weekends. I work hard during the week and go to Stroller Strides Monday through Friday, sometimes Saturday too! I start my day with a yummy green/protein smoothie that helps give me the energy to get through my workout and eat a little protein snack afterwards. My lunch is usually a turkey, avocado sandwich on whole wheat bread with cucumbers, carrots and hummus. My afternoon snack is almonds, a piece of fruit or some kind of mixture with protein and then a home cooked dinner. I try to limit my alcohol intake to the weekends only.

*It can be SO HARD to find “me” time when you are taking care of your family, how were you able to make these healthy changes and stick to them while still doing all of you other day to day duties?*

I’ve always led a healthy lifestyle since becoming an adult. When I was single, I would do my grocery shopping on Sunday and cut up all my fruits and vegetables and divide them up for the week so I could make my lunches in less time. I’ve carried these habits into my family life. Our kitchen is always stocked with fruits and vegetables and lean protein. I have a routine that I follow each day. I do things while the children nap and are sleeping at night. I’ve also taken advantage of ordering my groceries online and picking them up at the store instead of going into the store and shopping myself. It has given me more time with my family and cut down on impulse buying. I make my “menu” for the week and buy only what is needed for meals and snacks.

*How do feel now? How has this changed your life?*

I feel awesome! I look forward to Stroller Strides each morning with my children. What better way to get healthy than by having your babies right there with you?! The kids love seeing the other kids, snacking and giving me a “go mommy” every once in a while. Afterwards, we go to the playground with the other moms and their kids. This has totally changed my life and I’m hooked! It has changed my life so much that I am attending instructor training this week! I want to help other moms achieve their goals like my instructors have helped me reach mine. They were/are so encouraging every day and I would love to do the same thing for other moms. My instructors and all the moms that I work out with every day inspire me to push a little bit harder. They are all amazing inspirations and I’m so happy to be able to spend a little time with them each day.

*What are you most proud of?*

My family! My husband is so supportive of anything that I do and I don’t know how I would get through anything without his support. He and my children are what I’m most proud of. Those sweet little faces are the light of my life and I am so thankful that I get to be their mommy.

*What advice do you have for other moms who want to get healthy?*

Start small and work your way up, don’t put too much pressure on yourself and celebrate your victories! That is what I did. I remember that I could not get my head off the ground to do a single crunch after I had a c-section. It was frustrating, but I kept at it and soon I was able to do all the ab exercises in class. Also, I set little goals for myself all along the way. It was daunting to think that I had 66 pounds to lose so I took it in chunks. Once I hit each milestone, I would reward myself with a pedicure or an extra hour of tv at night (when really I should have been sleeping, but hey, it was my reward!), and got new workout outfits all along the way. I also keep in mind that I am living a healthy example for my children. The habits that I have will hopefully rub off onto them and they will take them into their own lives.

*Thanks for sharing your inspiring story Annette!!*

**If you would like to share your own story and be featured as a Motivating Mom, email hillary@fit4mom.com**

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