Weekend Wellness – The Reluctant Fitness Junkie

Week-End Wellness

by Tammy Parkinson

The other day I was having a “fitness” conversation with a woman who, for many many years placed her health priorities on the back burner.  After we talked for a while, she shared with me her story.  I asked her to write about it because the very idea of what she overcame inspired me…and I knew it could inspire so many others who have similar circumstances and feel like they just can’t muddle through to get going.  Here is her story, enjoy~

The Reluctant Fitness Junkie

wellness dixonI remember it like it happened yesterday.  I was plugging away at my desk when my fitness junkie of a boss came to me and said, “What do you think about starting a Biggest Loser contest in the office?”  My gut reaction was to think he had lost his mind… I gave him “that look” and I may have even scoffed aloud.  I was too busy trying to keep my head above water at the office, recently separated with a 3-year-old daughter, emotionally and physically drained, and not in the mood for some crazy new project that had nothing to do with real estate.

But within a couple of weeks, we launched the contest at our sales meeting.  We convinced 40 participants, including myself, to throw in $50 each to participate in a 90 day challenge to see who could lose the highest percentage of their starting body weight.  We divided ourselves into teams, gave ourselves clever team names, built accountability systems, weighed in on a weekly basis, and posted our progress on giant poster boards in the kitchen for everyone to see. The first place winner was set to win over $1,000!

That night, I dragged my elliptical machine in from the garage, where it had lived for the past two years, and parked it in the living room.  I used it while watching TV, sometimes at 10 pm, after I put my daughter to bed and got my household chores done.  I starting tracking every single thing I ate and drank with the MyFitnessPal app.  I swapped out beer and wine for water and tea {gasp!}.  I stopped eating out and cooked at home.

Amazing things started to happen.  The Giants were in the World Series (I mention this because much of my time on the elliptical was spent watching the games, making my workouts much more enjoyable). My clothes were practically falling off of me. I was sleeping better and looking younger.  I felt happier.
At the end of the 90 day challenge, there was a tight race for first place.  And the person who won the whole thing was, that’s right, this girl… the one who openly scoffed at her boss when he came and pitched what would turn out to be the greatest idea ever.  I was 30 lbs. lighter, I had enough prize money to buy a much-needed new wardrobe, and most importantly, I had reinvented myself.  I discovered that the best example I could ever set for my young daughter was to take control of my own health and happiness.

That was nearly 5 years ago.  Since then, I have become a bit of a fitness junkie myself.  I caught the running bug in 2011 and have completed in over a dozen half marathons and many other local races.  I have been able to bond with amazing people through a mutual love of physical challenges, having completed a Tough Mudder and the inaugural 49ers Rush Challenge with Intero teammates, as well as some running “playdates.”  As a single mom, I don’t have free reign to get out to the gym at 5:30 am.  Instead, I opt for workout DVD’s in my living room to break a sweat before work.  I live for my 5-8 mile trail runs on the few off-days that I have.  I make it a priority in order to make it happen.

Honestly, how long have you been saying to yourself, “I really need to start working-out.” I hear this all the time when people ask me about my running adventures.  It doesn’t matter how you get started, or why, or whether you want to or not… I know I sure didn’t.  The important thing is, you just start somewhere, and don’t stop until you get to where you are going.  I bet amazing things will start happening for you!

~ Kelli Dixon
Operations Manager
Intero Real Estate

Thank you Kelli…so many of us feel there are obstacles in our way, too big to overcome…here you show HOW it can be done…not IF.
Tammy Parkinson, CPT CNC CLC
Body Firm Personal Training and Nutritional Consulting


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