My Story

Mother, runner, wife, photographer, crafter, daughter, Internet Junkie, best friend, sister, and i like to try new things. I would probably surprise you with how awesome i really am. This is my story. I was born to run with a camera in my hands, I just fell short somewhere along the way. I lost control of who i was for a little while, but running has helped me to find myself again.  I will keep track of my journey, you can read if you like. Oh and i love pictures, so don’t be surprised if you are overwhelmed with photos on my posts.

Where I Began

I was born in Newtown, Connecticut in the 80’s.  I know what Teddy Ruxbin is, record players, Heman & Shera, and i also played with a gameboy(the black and white version).  I grew up in a great household, and i know that this is not something everyone can say. I am well rounded, i have learned a lot through my ordeals.  I did everything in order; grew up, graduated from high school, started college, bought a house, got engaged, graduated college, got married, had a baby….That is the right order right?? I guess it was just my right order, everyone has a different story.

I started playing soccer while i was in 2nd grade, i think my last year was after my 11th grade, then i ran track those last 2 years. I was not good at track, i was fast, but it was something i knew nothing about, i wasn’t passionate about it. I ran the 100M, I’m pretty certain i never won…..ever.

Growing Up, Buying a house, Getting Married, Having a Baby

I moved to the suburbs of Savannah, GA in the late 90’s, this was the start of my 10th grade year. 6 months after moving here i started dating my now husband, Ron. We have been together since April 1999. I had just turned 16, life was great. I graduated High School in 2001 and went straight into college, I graduated 6…yes 6, years later with my BBA. I took my time, i was in no hurry for anything special.

Ron and I bought our first house in July of 2002, got engaged during Christmas of 2002, Married in April of 2007. HA that’s quite the gap of space in there….but like i said before, it took me 6 years to get through college, all while waiting tables at a few different restaurants.

I Survived ( I secretly want to be on that show )

Oh the dreaded accident story!! Some have heard it time and time again, while others, like you (that is why you are reading this) have yet to hear the story of how i fell off the side of a volcano…in Hawaii.  We were in Hawaii for my Sister and her husbands wedding in October 2003. Beautiful!!! It really was a great vacation!! We had a great time until the dreaded Volcano bike ride.  Ha, i can look back and laugh now, but we went through a rough time. Long story short, we were on a bike tour, starting at the top of Haleakala in Maui (a dormant Volcano). We rode down on the bikes one person behind the other watching the sun rise. About 4 miles down the ride, i lost control of my bike and hit the curb, went head first over the handle bars and hit a rock face first at 35mph. I blacked out, last thing i remember was my bike shaking, and i closed my eyes and that was it. I woke up in the ER with a broken jaw, and multiple fractures on the left side of my face. My family was told i probably would not make it. Obviously here i am, so they were wrong, BUT they were amazing at the Maui Memorial Medical Center!!!

I was in the ICU for 4 days, had my mouth wired shut for 6 weeks, i have a 2.5 inch titanium plate to make up my left cheek, 2 broken ribs, and i cut the muscle in my left thigh in half. It took therapy, but my vision is impaired, (although that could have just been a natural cause)! The right side of my face had temporary paralysis. (I guess the only way to explain how it looked was how a stroke victim looks after half of their body stops working. That was the right side of my face….it is still lazy but not too noticeable) I had to tape my eye closed at night and put drops in it to keep it lubricated. To this day, that eye does not cry when i am actually crying, only when i eat lettuce!!  I had to drink all of my meals for 2 months through a straw. Imagine thanksgiving dinner through a tiny little straw….yeah it wasn’t very good, at all!!! I had my family and friends right there by my side the entire time. Most of them eager to see what they can make into liquid for me to drink.  My favorite was  Chili with Sour Cream, in a blender as liquid as i could get it. I was on some insane steroids and pain meds. They made me so thirsty, lucky for me all i could do is drink… that was my only choice!! I actually would go through 2 gallons of milk a day, it was the only thing of substance that made me feel full. And wouldn’t you know, i gained 30lbs during the 2 months…haha, no one believes me, but that milk is high in calories!!

You can now say you know someone who has actually fallen off the side of a Volcano and survived 🙂

In November of 2008 we found out we were expecting a baby the following year!! I was so happy, best thing ever right?? Yup, it was for sure, but i will also admit, it has had it’s down moments, along the way. Anything i would ever change? Absolutely NOT.

I was part of a forum board (What to Expect When Your Expecting, im sure you have heard of it)  of women who were all expecting in July of 2009. One of ladies in the group always stuck out to me, you know why, because she RAN, while pregnant!!!!!! I couldn’t even fathom it, while my pregnancy had me out of work by month 6 because i couldn’t even walk…this lady was running. I was envious, jealous, but at the same time, i was like, I’m pregnant, I’m allowed to eat and be lazy, which is exactly what i did.  The last month i was on bed rest because of my blood pressure. I hated it, but again, i was so lazy, i probably would have just sat on the couch whether being forced to or not.

 I was up to 210lbs about 2 weeks before i went into labor….so im sure it was higher, but really!!!!! 210lbs!!!???? my normal weight is down around 150, i was 140 when i got married. How does someone gain THAT much weight (it was probably all my NOSE, it was HUGE)…while the person next to you is all belly and only gained 10 lbs their whole pregnancy….

Needless to say after i had my beautiful baby girl, i needed to lose the weight, but i was just lazy and i ate whatever i wanted, when i wanted, for 9 months, HOW do i get into the weight loss thing!???

Let The Running Begin!

In January 2010, me and my Aunt started running together. We pushed, I pushed too hard, so hard i hurt my knees, which hurt so bad because i was so heavy, and i quit. I couldn’t do it, i quit and sat my butt back down on that couch all while still wearing my maternity pants when i worked.  In June i started going to a boot camp. it consisted of circuit training using free weights and body weight, i almost puked my very first class….i was one of “those”. I wanted to quit, but i didn’t and i made some great friends along the way. I still go to that class 2 days a week, it’s been 2 years now, and i never did puke or quit.

My Aunt and I started back to running in July, just 6 months after i quit the first time. We made a goal, that goal was to do the C25K program and run our very first 5k race, the Savannah River Bridge Run the first week of December 2010. We trained but didn’t push, we just did what we could, and guess what, we ended up running the Turkey Trot 5K Thanksgiving day, i think this was 2 weeks before schedule of our first run. We did it. And i remember clearly how badly i wanted that race to end, i thought the end was never going to get there, and that was only 3.1 miles…..yes ONLY, i can say that now, i have ran 26.2 at one time now, so 3.1 is an only to me.

So for the next year, we ran A LOT of 5k’s, all while running together. Our next goal, you guessed it, train for a half marathon…And that we did, and we actually stuck with it, quite well too with our long runs on Sunday mornings. Our very first half marathon was November 5, 2011 and we did it!!! My aunt and I started at the same time and we finished at the same time on that race. i wasn’t worried about a good or bad time, i just wanted to do it, and be able to say that I AM a marathoner, and what a better way to do it with the person who helped you get there. We helped each other….you know she wanted to quit the last 2 miles of that 1/2. You know who MADE her finish, me, Me, ME, the one who quit before, who thought this will never get easier, i will never be the one to inspire people, ME.

If it wasn’t for her, i would never be where i am today, because today i am a RUNNER.  So for that i thank you Jeanine!!

So where Do I Stand Now??

I have completed 1 marathon(Americas toughest road marathon)(yes i am bragging)  9 half marathons, 4 Mud Runs, 3 Virtual races,  2 Color runs, 1 Hot chocolate run and  numerous other races, Pictures in South Magazine twice, and i am chapter leader for a free nation wide running group called Moms Run This Town, for the Savannah GA chapter. Yes i now help to motivate others to get out there and do it. I’m telling you, if i can do it, so can you. i may not be the fastest out there, but I am still out there.
My weight when i started was up around 185-190, i was in a size 14-16 in pants, Large-X Large shirt.
Now, well i can tell you weight doesn’t bother me anymore…im usually right around the 160lb mark, (give or take 5lbs…you know how us women fluctuate!!) and i am in a 6-8 pant size, and medium shirts comfortably. There is muscle definition, and i am much more confident!!!
And to tell you a little secret, it completely warms my heart when people come to ME to tell me they went out and ran today, or they started doing something they never thought possible….i was in that same boat, and i know how it feels. I am just completely humbled at the response i get from everyone. They may not know it, but they are the reason i get out there an push every day.

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