Health: (noun) 1. the state of being free from illness or injury, 2. a person’s mental or physical condition, 3. used to express friendly feelings toward one’s companions before drinking

Webster’s Dictionary

Yes! All of that. Health, being healthy, living a healthy lifestyle, and celebrating the health of others is an important aspect to achieving balance in our lives. I know it’s not easy. Like many women, I have challenges in this area.

My favorite sport is running. I’ve participated in many 5Ks but decided to run a full marathon in 2011. What an amazing feeling although, around mile 20, it was a true test of my mental will. I kicked it in for the final 2 miles to finish in about 6 hours. Yes, 6 hours! One day, I do hope to improve that time.

Just before the start of the Nike Women’s Marathon in San Francisco, CA 2011.

I was diagnosed with fibromyalgia in 2012.  I took control of my health with a new routine which included hot yoga, running, and clean eating. I really saw and felt an improvement in physical and mental health. I finally had my energy back!

5K Color Run in Sacramento, CA shortly after being diagnosed with fibromyalgia. Mentally, I was feeling great, physically I was exhausted.

I was inspired to train for a bikini competition. I learned so much about weight training and diet. Though it was an amazing process of transformation, I didn’t accomplish the goal of competing on stage.

Posing practice with the Combine Fitness crew in 2013. I felt amazing!

At the end of 2013, I had an irregular pap smear that resulted in low grade cervical intraepithelial neoplasia (CIN). I had a Loop Electrosurgical Excision (LEEP) procedure  which carved away those cells along with a piece of my cervix. I remember feeling unsure about that experience. What followed was a withdraw from a lot of my physical activities and a move into my career and community.

Although my doctor did say, I’d likely not become pregnant after the LEEP, I got pregnant in early 2015. Having a baby at 39 years old was a completely different experience in comparison to my younger 20-something age. After four children, I should have had natural birthing figured out but instead Titus was born C-section. That unexpected experience had an impact on my recovery.

In our favorite Lalabu shirt. Titus was so cozy in that front pocket!

I challenge myself daily to get back to the state of health I had been only a few short years ago. Since I’ve focused on my career and education this takes time away from the physical activity I was doing before. I continue to strive to find my balance. I hope my stories inspire you to continue to strive for a healthier life!

woman hiking
I hiked Red Rock Canyon just outside of Las Vegas, Nevada in 2018
woman jumping for joy
Running is wonderful!