Transformations All Around for this Motivating Mama

If you want to chat with a Mama that knows all about what Fit4Mom Lou has to offer, hit up our girl Joya. This amazing go-getter has been checking off her goals right and left with the help of a variety of #F4MLOU classes. Most recently, Joya participated in our Spring session of Run Club and capped it off with an absolutely stunning performance at the Kentucky Derby Mini Marathon. Below she shares her journey to the finish line with us and even throws it back to her initial transformation story thanks to Body Back that started it all!

"My Fit4Mom journey began last October with Body Back. I was struggling to lose the last 10 lbs of baby weight after the birth of my twins. They were 14 months old and I worked out 5-6 days a week doing at home Beachbody work outs but the scale wouldn’t budge. I was discouraged, sluggish, and addicted to processed foods and sweeteners. Body Back changed my relationship with food and taught me how to eat healthy. After two rounds, I had dropped 19 pounds, surpassing my original goal and getting back to the weight I was when I got married over 8 years ago.

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I then joined Run Club in March 2019 because I wanted to get back into running. I had always loved running but never had any formal training and hadn’t really run outside of Fit4Mom classes in over 2 and 1/2 years. After discussing my end of Run Club plans with the program coach, I decided to sign up for the Kentucky Derby Mini-Marathon. Even though I hadn’t really been running a lot, I knew I could do A LOT of high knees so I figured that should count for something.

I had previously run only one other half marathon which was the Urban Bourbon Half Marathon in October 2016 before getting pregnant with the twins. My goal for this race was to finish faster than my first half marathon experience; I had finished in 2:12 minutes at a pace of 10:08 per mile.

So, I showed up each week at Run Club where we worked on foot placement, agility, speed and core strength. I also followed the training scheduled designed for me for outside of class runs and cross trained with Boost and Body Back classes.

The Spring training schedule was a challenge for me because I hate running in the cold, don’t own a treadmill and am not a morning person. It forced me to get bundled up, get outside, and stop the excuses. I mostly ran at night after the kids were in bed through my neighborhood and occasionally did shorter training runs on my lunch break. On weekends as the mileage added up, I would run with a couple girls from Run Club and I loved getting to know those mamas. I loved the support of the Run Club group and the camaraderie of going through the struggles of race training with a group of women who were going through it too. Everyone was so motivated. A few of us even ran early on Easter morning to get our 10 mile run in before spending the day with our families.

On race day, I arrived with a couple of my Run Club crew prepared to run at a 9:30 pace which is what I had been training at and felt comfortable. But, as I got a few miles in I felt like I could push it a little more. I ended up finishing the mini-marathon well below the pace I had set out to do in less than two hours at an 8:58 per mile pace! Increasing my speed by over 1 minute per mile!

I would have never been able to do this without Run Club and Body Back! I have learned so much and have been bitten by the “race bug”. I am already planning my next mini-marathon in October and hopefully a few more races in between. I’ve fallen in love with running again and keep hearing my Fit4mom instructors saying in my head, “you were meant to do hard things." I’m excited to keep pushing myself. I am grateful for my new lifestyle and this village of amazing mamas!" - Joya Cummings