If you noticed recently, I started running again.

Usually I would find myself just running (in my minivan) to the nearest fast food restaurant during my lunch hour to avoid trying to find a parking spot downtown, having to go out in the cold, or making the excuse that I didn’t have time to do anything else but a drive-through because I needed to get back to work. These were my excuses anyway, even though on the inside I was just craving Wendy’s sea salt french fries with two sides of ranch.

But those cravings didn’t do anything but make me lazier, while pretty much putting all my ‘baby weight’ I ever tried to lose, back on.

Nice.

I don’t know how it is for you, but for me to make lifestyle changes where weight is concerned…I need there to be what I call, life events. Not just, “I want to lose weight” but actually physical events where I force myself to do things that in my current state wouldn’t feel comfortable with doing. Events with deadlines.

Previous events that worked for me:

Break-ups usually were a good one in and after college. Some people stay in their jammies and slippers while sobbing over chick flicks and eating pints of Häagen-Dazs. Not me. I ran. And while I ran I imagined myself in the cutest mini-skirt and tank top when the time came that I might accidentally run into my ex at a bar. Happy to say, that imagination became a reality once, and it felt AWESOME!

Not the same night, but my great friend Barbie was there with me on that 'awesome' night ;).

Wedding. You don’t get many times, if any, where the party means all eyes on you. And just knowing pictures of this day would surface time and time again in albums, on your wall at home, tagged online, etc. and never wanted to look back and say, “UGH…let’s not look at those.”

One of the best days of my life, celebrating with the love of my life.

Double whammy: Honeymoon. This is a two-for-one where not only you want to look good in your dress, but shortly after you will be spending the week in a bathing suit. And again, pictures of this event would surface too.

On our honeymoon in Barbados.

But then what? Babies!!

Pregnancy brings all kinds of prettiness, let me tell you. Had to say good bye to the belly ring and hello to the stretch marks. (Still want a refund on my belly butter for that one.) And usually during this time of my enlarged-self, the last thing I wanted to do was weigh-in in front of complete strangers (aka nurses), but month-by-month I had to do it and watch the scale roll in higher and higher as they jotted it down, calculating my above average percentage of weight gain. Yes, gaining weight during pregnancy is good for growing babies. But eighty pounds in my first pregnancy…not so much.

1st Pregnancy. This was not my last trimester either.

And you know darn well, well at least with me….I had no urgency to lose the weight when we knew we wanted to have a second child. I lost a bit to be comfortable with myself again, but there was no big commitment to the gym, a track, or love of working out when bottles and diapers were consuming my life.

2nd Pregnancy. With stretch marks Photoshopped out by Dave the photographer.

Last summer, wearing the only suit I dare to be seen in...one with a skirt.

Past summer with baby Tanner.

First summer on the boat with my boys. I was a bit thinner then than I am now, having to wear less clothes seems to do that. I call this my hibernating season but both of these seasons, far from my goal happy weight:).

But now, with two amazing boys and no plan for any more pregnancies, I decided it was time that I needed to create new ‘life events’ that would encourage me to be healthy again….and since I didn’t see any in my near future…I decided it was time to create them.

Introducing my forced life events:

#1: I signed myself up for my first half marathon, the Bayshore half-marathon in Traverse City.

#2: I coerced my husband to RSVP us to a firefighter wedding in the Caribbean with gobs of other firefighters on his department. Yes, forcing myself in a bathing suit in front of ALL of them.

Now if that is not incentive for losing weight and getting back in shape, I don’t know what is.

Both of these ‘life events’ will be occurring in May.  So, last week began my official 18-week half-marathon training program.

Happy to report that my first week, I clocked 6.5 miles on the treadmill, 10 miles on the bike trainer and 5 marbles in my ‘Gone’ weight loss jar.

35 more to go…..and many, many, many, more miles to log.

But already feel better. And now I find myself when I am running (well jogging/fast walking at this point) imagining myself in that cute mini-skirt again…on the beach this time…and not for any type of revenge….but for just ME instead.

Thanks for listening!

-Andrea

What life events do you have coming up?  What are you doing to get ready for them? Please feel free to share!

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