I’m a lot of things to a lot of people, but my favorite label in life is “mommy”.
My daughter was born on March 5, 2012, just 3 days shy of my 34th birthday. She’s got an adorable face and a big, sassy personality to match. I know I’m a lot biased, but I have never met another child as outgoing and friendly as she is. When I found out I was having a girl, I was absolutely over the moon, but also a little terrified. Throughout my life I have struggled with terrible body image, issues with food, and bad self esteem. How would I protect my own little girl from these feelings?
I didn’t start running until about a year after she was born, but it’s like a whole new world opened up for me when I did. The self confidence I have gained through my sport was a completely unexpected, but very welcome thing. I feel much better prepared now to teach my child to love the body she is in, to make healthy choices, and the importance of physical activity in her every day life.
She’s 19 months old and she has already run in her first event!
On September 4, I ran in the NFL Series Back to Football 5K held downtown at the Baltimore Ravens stadium. As part of the event they also had a Kid’s Fun Run called the Play 60, which is a campaign designed to encourage children to be active for 60 minutes a day. What a great message to send! Because my husband and daughter were already there supporting me, I thought it would be fun to sign her up for the field run, which was being held for ages 5 and under. At 1 and a half, she was by far the youngest out there, but man did she have a blast! She even got her own bib!
It started with the kids running through the tunnel just as our favorite football greats do…
…then over some obstacles (with Daddy’s help) and a trip around one of the most beautiful stadiums in all of football…
…before crossing the finish line and receiving a medal of her very own!
The turnout for the event was exceptional, which gives me hope that there will be another one next year. It was an awesome time for my whole family with such an important message built in. Being active not only keeps you healthy, but it’s so much fun too!