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October's MOM- Motivating Mom of the Month

We are so excited to announce our MOM (Motivating Mom of the Month) for October! Each month we will take a moment to honor one of our local FIT4MOM Montgomery County Moms for her efforts to lead a healthy lifestyle and for her dedication to the program. This month we honor Colleen Church!

"Colleen is a rockstar. She is always yelling motivating and inspiring sayings to push a fellow mama. She really tries her hardest at workouts!" ~Instructor Maya

"Colleen has absolutely jumped in at 100%. She's the cheerleader several mamas need some mornings (myself included)! " ~Instructor Heather

We asked Colleen a few questions so we can all get to know her better, and here is what she had to say:

1. Who are the members of your family?

The members of my family include my husband Tyler, our daughter, Lillian (17 months) , and our dog, Oscar (4 years).

2. What is/was your career?

As of this May, I am staying at home raising our family and loving it! I was a teacher for five years. I enjoyed teaching first grade but found my true calling in the pre-primary years. I taught at a small child development center that was inspired by the Reggio Emilia Approach. I worked with children ages 6 weeks to 18 months. The children, families, and staff in Athens, Ohio were amazing. We all supported each other and worked together to create a great learning environment and work place. I also taught college courses at night. Teaching those who want to be teachers was a unique opportunity for me. I felt like I was able to "pay it forward" and share my experiences to help shape tomorrow's teachers.

3. How long have you been a member of FIT4MOM Montgomery County, and what has it done for you?

Fit4Mom has been a life saver for my me. I was in a job I loved, but had to leave due to my family moving out of state. I lost my immediate support system and friends. I only joined this July but for months before our move, I raved about Stroller Strides to my coworkers. I didn't know exactly what I was getting into but I feel excited for each day knowing I have such a positive group of mothers to exercise with and socialize with after with as my reward for becoming MOMSTRONG.

4. What is your favorite class exercise?

I love man pushups! When I had a personal trainer I was doing them on my knees and made it my goal to complete one real man pushup. I successfully completed two a few months into our time together. Eventually I worked up to more and completed many reps up through 38 weeks pregnant. I like to call them MOM Pushups now :)

5. What is something that has surprised you about motherhood?

Motherhood is a journey but through all the ups and downs it is incredible the amount of love I have for my child and the need to protect her.

6. List 3 of your favorite things:

I love God, my family, and Fit4Mom!

7. What is your proudest mommy moment so far?

At 28 weeks pregnant I was diagnosed with gestational diabetes. I felt defeated. I was eating a strong plant-based lifestyle for over two years and I had been exercising with a trainer 3x a week for months before the pregnancy. After crying for a day or two and not knowing what to eat, and fearful of the 4x a day finger prick, I continued with my trainer, and I met with a dietician each week for the last 12 weeks of my pregnancy. Having to start eating meat again was hard to stomach, but I kept such a detailed food log, and I measured each piece of food I ate. I used measuring cups and food scales. I was so particular, my numbers were never a concern. After 28 hours in labor, on my 28th birthday, I gave birth to a healthy 7 lb baby. I gained very little weight during pregnancy and lost more than double after delivery. Though this diagnosis seemed like a giant defeat, it turned into my greatest victory!

8. Any advice for other moms out there?

Some days may feel long, but the years are short! Say "I love you" each day and be happy!

Thank you, Colleen, for being such a valuable part of Our Village here at FIT4MOM Montgomery County! We truly appreciate you & the positive energy you bring to class and Our Village!

Check back to see who our MOM will be in November!

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