CrossFit, Family Life, Life, Weight Loss

Find Your Why

I have struggled with my weight my whole life. I remember trying to lose weight in high school because I wanted to fit into a pretty dress for school dances or because I felt the pressure of society telling me I should want to lose weight. Even during my internship after high school I tried to get into running or eating “healthier” because I thought it was what I “should” do. Until Pizza or Oreo night. Let’s be real – sharing a dorm room with 5 other girls it was basically a hormonal food binge all year.

pizzaface

The truth is I have always had a great level of confidence. I have always been surrounded by people who love me the way I am and make me feel beautiful and special regardless of my size. Have I had my fair share of dressing room frustrations? Sure. I may not have been super proud of my body, but I never was made to feel ashamed of it. I was happy with who I was.

I have been blessed to have found an amazing man who has loved me from the beginning- not just “despite my size” but really even because of my size. What?! He likes women with curves! HA. Like I said, I’ve always had confidence and that was a big selling point for him. It was a whirlwind courtship, engagement, and marriage. We were both blissfully happy to have found each other. I felt loved and accepted for who I am. Then it came time to start talking about starting a family. We were young and relatively healthy so we figured it shouldn’t be a problem, right? Wrong. We went through 8 months of “trying” – Which, I know is nothing compared to what some people go through. But every month we didn’t get pregnant I felt more and more guilty. Was my weight the problem? This is all my fault was the thought that took residence in my mind. If I didn’t eat so much, I wouldn’t be this big. If I wasn’t this big we could get pregnant easier. So, I jumped back on the weight loss bandwagon. I joined weight watchers and lost about 5lbs. 195 was the lowest I got. But then it stopped working, or I stopped working it. I found out I had Hashimoto’s and thought finally, a reason! I was put on medication and expected the pounds to just melt away on their own. Instead – I got pregnant. When I found out I was pregnant I weighed in at 207 and could barely fit in my Size 18 jeans.

universal2009

3.5 weeks pregnant and didn’t know it!

I was so excited to find out we were pregnant. Those 10 blissful months went by in waves of boneless buffalo wings, gallons of ice cream, and boxes upon boxes of mac and cheese. Delivery day came and I weighed in at 250lbs.

250lbpregnantwoman

While that was a lot of baby, there was a lot that wasn’t baby.

When she was born I was in another state of bliss. The tired, hormonal, eat when I can and try to survive bliss. I ignored the fact that I gained nearly 50lbs when I was pregnant with this little 7lb bundle of joy. those extra 40+lbs weren’t going away on their own. Around her 2 month check up I was somewhere around 24olbs. Then came Easter. The day I would find my why.

easter

If you have read the story of my health journey you know it was this family picture that would become the springboard my a-ha moment:

beforeeaster2010

I was unhappy and unhealthy. I was learning to manage my thyroid disease and a newborn. I knew that I needed to get healthy. My family has a horrible history of heart health (both grandmothers dying in their 50s-60s due to heart disease, my dad getting a pacemaker when he was 36…) and suddenly seeing this picture made it all click. I found my why. Because I wanted to be healthy for my family. I couldn’t imagine my daughter losing her mom because I didn’t want to eat healthy and exercise. For the longest time I said I was happy with myself, and I was, but I was also selfish for not wanting to make the changes I needed to be the healthiest me for my family. I may have been happy now, but my family wouldn’t be happy if I got sick… or worse… because of my poor life choices.

So I began my journey. That was 3 years ago. Since then my why has changed many times. I’ve been able to get to the healthiest I’ve ever been, but I’ve also found my passion. I enjoy working out. I eat healthy because I respect my body and want to fuel it properly. Now I’m looking more to performance and competition as my “why” when it comes to CrossFit. Since I started CrossFit majorly overweight I’ve had to overcome a lot of stereotypes of “the big girl” – and while I’ve had plenty of people support and encourage me there have been a few that have made light of my desire to compete. And you know what? It makes me even better. Even if I have 100 people telling me I can, all it takes for me to do it is for 1 person to tell me I can’t. 

thankyou

No, I may not be the smallest… strongest… fastest… or the best… but I leave it all out there. Today I hit a goal I set at the beginning of the year… a 500lb CrossFit Total (Made up of your Back Squat, Shoulder Press, and Deadlift). I set a 20lb Personal record on the Deadlift, something I’ve been working hard for.

This weekend I’ll be competing in my first CrossFit competition. I don’t know how I’ll do. But I do know I’ll give it my all regardless. I’ve found my Why and that is what keeps me going day after day. I want to be a healthy mom and wife first – but I want to be a competitor second.

What’s your Why?

 

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23 Comments

  • Reply Jen June 10, 2013 at 1:44 pm

    You look incredible and should be so proud of how far you have come! I lose sight of my why a lot and it takes a lot of work to remember that “I” am my own why. I owe it to myself to treat my body well and be the best I can be. As a working mom and wife, it’s tough to make myself the priority but in order to be the best me I can be, I have to do it. It’s not easy, and it’s a struggle, but I’m trying!
    Jen recently posted..Summer bucket listMy Profile

  • Reply Sylvia @ Frolic Through Life June 10, 2013 at 2:10 pm

    We have the same why. I need to be healthy for my little guy, so I can lead by example and be there for him for a very long time. I don’t want him to struggle with being overweight like I did, and leading an active healthy lifestyle is the number one way to prevent that. Congrats on your PR! I PRed my dead-lift last week too! Woohoo!
    Sylvia @ Frolic Through Life recently posted..Our First HikeMy Profile

  • Reply Linz @ Itz Linz June 10, 2013 at 3:55 pm

    that last picture + quote is AWESOME!!!! good for you girl!
    Linz @ Itz Linz recently posted..Tandem YogaMy Profile

  • Reply Merchon June 10, 2013 at 4:13 pm

    Great post. You look amazing! Your daughter has an amazing role model to look up to!
    Merchon recently posted..Well that was a good idea….My Profile

  • Reply Peter @ MadForFit June 11, 2013 at 5:16 am

    Thats a really inspiratinol story! Well done!

    Will it help if I tell you that you won’t get any better?! 🙂

    Not sure what my ‘why’ is. I’ve always worked-out and it’s just part of my life.
    Peter @ MadForFit recently posted..The Scientific 7-Minute WorkoutMy Profile

  • Reply Robin June 11, 2013 at 6:23 am

    Love reading your thoughts when you get “real” about life!!! Good luck this weekend I can’t wait to hear how it went! I’m sure you will dominate!

  • Reply Lydia June 11, 2013 at 7:33 am

    Love your story and love your outlook! You inspire me constantly to keep working, keep trying and stay positive. Way to rock the Crossfit Total – 500 lbs – what?! Amazing. Do you know I still have never done the total?! Need to do it soon!
    Lydia recently posted..First Crossfit Competition: Fenrir’s MayhemMy Profile

  • Reply Courtney June 11, 2013 at 7:58 am

    Love. I literally have this post & video scheduled for later this week – great minds think alike my friend! So glad you have found your “why”. I’ve known my for a while but it really hit me during my trip to NYC – when I was in the SOUL cycle class.
    <3

  • Reply Tori @ In Love and Peanut Butter June 11, 2013 at 8:35 am

    Courtney, you are so inspiring. I loved reading this story. And that photo at the bottom.. perfect!
    Tori @ In Love and Peanut Butter recently posted..Running. How it all began…My Profile

  • Reply Liz Dean June 11, 2013 at 8:46 am

    I love following you and your amazing journey! I follow you on instagram and was so excited to see you hit those numbers yesterday. Yesterday, because of your post I told my husband I had to get to a 175# squat and 80# press and I did…because of your motivation! My deadlift is next today 🙂 Thanks for being so open and honest about your life and struggles and good times.
    Liz

  • Reply Shaunna@mamas13minutemile.com June 11, 2013 at 9:08 am

    You are a true gem! 🙂
    Shaunna@mamas13minutemile.com recently posted..Weekend Wrap-up and Climb IowaMy Profile

  • Reply Courtney B June 11, 2013 at 9:43 am

    Hello, from another Courtney! I loved your post and I could really relate to it. It has taken me awhile to find my why or at least to take my “why” seriously. I always knew WHY I should start getting fit,but still never got my butt off the couch and moving. I am finally to that place. Thanks for that extra bit of inspiration I needed to get through the day. 🙂
    Courtney B recently posted..It’s time foooooor…My Profile

  • Reply Elle June 11, 2013 at 10:34 am

    Such a sweet picture of you and your baby. Good luck with your competition. You look so strong and determined! 🙂

  • Reply Melissa B in IL June 11, 2013 at 11:29 am

    Good luck this weekend! Hope you have a blast! My why is similar…my boys. I had back surgery a year ago January. I was flat on the floor for a month unable to take care of my family. It was awful and recovery was my a ha moment. I refuse to go back there again, and I want to do what I can to make sure I don’t!

  • Reply Meghan @ TheMeghaMix June 11, 2013 at 11:37 am

    Court – congrats on your 500 CF total!!! You’ve totally motivated me to aim high with my lifts this month…I wanna catch up to you!
    Meghan @ TheMeghaMix recently posted..Weekly Workout Recap: The 100sMy Profile

  • Reply Gabby @ Gabby's Gluten-Free June 11, 2013 at 4:15 pm

    YOU FREAKING ROCK. <3
    Gabby @ Gabby’s Gluten-Free recently posted..Goal SettingMy Profile

  • Reply MegG June 11, 2013 at 4:24 pm

    Beautiful post, beautiful woman, congrats on all that you’ve done so far and keep on pushing for more!! Good luck in your first competition, can’t wait to read about it!!
    MegG recently posted..Annual Cap Hill Wine CrawlMy Profile

  • Reply Steph June 11, 2013 at 11:09 pm

    Great post! Rockstar!
    Steph recently posted..Judy’s tales: Sing a songMy Profile

  • Reply jennifer June 12, 2013 at 8:33 am

    Such a beautiful post, Courtney!
    I know I say this on probably every comment; but you are so inspiring and have such a drive that I don’t think a lot of people do. Keep at it, chica. 🙂

  • Reply Find Your “WHY” June 13, 2013 at 8:02 am

    […] pal Courtney just wrote a post about her “why” as well – go give her some love! Great minds […]

  • Reply Bean Bytes 42 June 16, 2013 at 11:00 pm

    […] inspiring: Find your why via Journey of a […]

  • Reply Taylor June 17, 2013 at 4:37 pm

    Isnt it funny that when you need it the most, you find the blog post that speaks to you, thank you for writing this – Im having a partial thyroidectomy tomorrow and have lost 48 pounds, and Im scared that the surgery will affect my progress, but if you can do it – so can i 🙂 thank you!! Oh and my ah-ha was also a picture 🙂
    Taylor recently posted..Day 243 – 50 POUNDS and a Letter to my 21 Self!My Profile

    • Reply Courtney June 19, 2013 at 11:30 am

      I’m SO glad you found this. I hope your surgery went well. I have been on thyroid meds and adjusting doses up and down for the better part of 4 years now… and while it can be a pain – it is not something that I’ve let stop me! YOU CAN DO IT!! Recover and keep making good choices!

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