Who knew it would be so difficult to write one's testimony. I have started and erased this at least ten times. 'Why spotlight me?', is what I keep asking. I am just your average Joe, most days spending more time looking for my flaws instead of thanking the Lord for all the amazing blessings I have. Thank you dear ABC family for the nomination, it is very special to me. I have always been a horrible critic of myself from my body to my abilities. I have yoyo'd on my weight my entire life. Growing up I was a small town country girl who played sports, but so did almost everyone. We had to so that we had a big enough team to compete. I was also a horse girl, showing quarter horses and eventually becoming rodeo queen my junior year of high school. Still, I was always critical of myself and the constant teasing from my peers didn't help. It wasn't until after my college years that I started to get into exercising. It became my stress relief and certainly helped me boost my self esteem. I would go in and out of gyms and continue to yoyo until I met my husband Adam in 1998 He was a fit guy and he loved me with all my flaws. I started to change my view of exercise to simply a better way of living. I wanted to be a healthier version of myself and I needed to start accepting myself as I was. I was passionate about the gym right up until two weeks before my daughter was born. Truth be told, I wanted to be so strong that brining her into the world would be a breeze. Mission accomplished! After 10 minutes from go time, she was here. Believe it or not, even that experience gave me more confidence. And now, I had a new focus in life - being the best mommy I could be. Today we have two beautiful and amazing children, Hannah Grace, 12 (you have probably seen her at the gym with me a time or two) and Elijah Cade who is 9 (this handsome man is my baseball love). To get into shape after both of my pregnancies, I got into running. I ran with a fantastic group of people who were encouraging and really cared about my health. Seven half marathons later, I decided to hang up the running shoes because my feet and knees just couldn't take it. Fast forward about a year and my husband starts talking about this boot camp gym he had driven by many times. He had gone in and talked with Tracy for a while and he felt like this could be a good fit for us both. At this point in my husbands life, he hadn't been in the gym or exercising for quite sometime. When he got excited, I got excited and we started ABC together. My husband no longer goes to ABC due to painful back issues, but I have found a home. A place where I feel encouraged and truly cared about. I have made some amazing friends and really learned more about taking care of my body than any of my previous 42 years. I feel better about myself today than I ever have and I know that if I start to doubt myself or need that extra push, anyone at ABC/IACF would be there to lend a hand. I am so blessed to have found a wonderful place to be a part of and I look forward to many more years with you all. Thank you for having me as your spotlight athlete, it truly means so much to me. ❤️
I am so happy to celebrate you as the spotlight boot camper. We met at ABC ran together at beach to bay. It has been good to see your smiling face and kind encouraging words and highs. Congrats!!!
Congrats Jennifer!! So excited to honor you as SBC! Thank you for sharing your story...it's so real and so beautiful! 😘