There are 3 days left in 2017 and I have three more stories to share with all of you. Karin, a fellow runner, and I met last summer to discuss how I could help her with her goals and from day 1, she's been one of my most dedicated clients. She's asked the questions she needed to ask, let me know when she needed more support, leaned into our community for advice and encouragement. Most importantly, she's remembered why she started and has stayed true to herself and made decisions that honor her goals every day. Last week I asked Karin to share her story in a group I'm leading and she had the following to say: "I am a mom to 5 pretty incredible children (ages: 23, 20, 17, 14 and 6), wife and a former Chemical Engineer. After we had our 5th child, we decided that it would be good for me to stay home, so I am now currently a Domestic Engineer (haha!). I used to wish for a lunch break like I had when I was working…just 30 minutes! Please! Just 30 minutes! Anyway, I am happy to be home with my family. I feel very fortunate to have the option. For the last two and a half years, I have trained and ran 2-½ marathons. Running a ½ marathon is no joke. I trained properly. I was running 4-5 times per week with my average run being around 5 miles and my long runs being on Saturday’s or Sunday’s. I built up my miles like I was supposed to and I replaced my shoes probably every 6 months as I felt my old shoes wearing out. I felt pretty good. However, at this point, I had been struggling with piriformis issues for almost 1 year and I believe I was starting to feel some plantar fasciitis starting to set in. I did everything I could to get through this ½ by getting regular physical therapy, dry needling, special athletic massage (very painful), cupping, as well as seeing my somewhat regular massage therapist who happens to be Chinese. If you think the athletic massage was painful, spend 5 minutes with Yan and that athletic massage was a walk in the park! 😊 I feel it is important to share with you that I also have Rheumatoid Arthritis. I was diagnosed with RA when I was 30 years old (15 years ago). Staying active is EXTREMELY important to helping me feel better. I tell my doctors that I will do what you tell me as long as you keep me doing the things that I want to do…run, ski, hike, bike, walk, etc. I do have set backs with my RA, but I feel I am no different from so many that live with ailments. I will get what are called “flares” 4-6 times per year where I will be in so much pain that I can do nothing but lay there and wait for it to pass (24-48 hours later). I describe a “flare” as your worst flu symptoms times 10! I feel the ache, the fever, and the pain all over my body! I also get other regular pain, but I know how to deal with that. Staying active is extremely important and necessary for my physical and mental well-being. Since I wasn’t running like I was, I needed to do something else. I don’t enjoy going to gyms despite having a membership to the YMCA. In May of 2017 I started to see posts from Megan Holmes about a different fitness program and some nutrition posts. My running had taken a back seat because I was hurting so much from my ailments caused by running. I believe I reached out to Megan sometime in the beginning of June 2017. I told her that I was interested in doing something different while I took a break from running. By mid-June 2017 I was “all in”. I was so excited to start this new program and to learn more about portion control.... I don’t like to put so much emphasis on the outside package, but I am still fairly young and I want to stay young and healthy for as long as I can." Karin has stayed dedicated for the past six months, doing multiple rounds of programs with me and being a BRIGHT LIGHT to all of us in our community. She's got one of the biggest hearts of anyone I've ever known and I'm so glad she's come into my life and so happy for the changes she's made in her life, both inside and out. Our 2018 community is forming NOW and we'd love to have you join us. You can connect with me by filling out this free wellness assessment. Let's make 2018 OUR YEAR.