NEM Region 8 Winner: Deanna Heath
Congrats to our Region 8 winner, Deanna Heath, for dedicating 12 weeks towards self-improvement both externally and internally and winning $442! Region Eight is led by Jess Cordova and comprises of Montana, North and South Dakota, Utah, Wyoming and Colorado. Find a local No Excuse Mom meetup near you by entering your city/state or zipcode HERE.
To truly take you to the beginning of my journey, my weight struggles began when I was around 18, I’m now 30. I blamed it solely on birth control pills, although I am sure there was a lot more that factored into it. 5 years passed with weight gain, then one day came where I hopped onto the scale and the number reached just over 200lbs. I held my head in disappointment, I knew I needed to change. I started challenging myself to start working out to lose the excess weight to find out just a few months later that I would be expecting my first child. Just one more excuse for me not to lose weight, even though I had lost some weight, my motivation was once again lost. After my first daughter was born in 2008, my older sister had been diagnosed with cancer. She was a single mother of 3 and I had just become a stay at home mother, naturally it was easier for me to help her through her struggles of being sick and having kids as I didn’t have a job to keep me tied down. Over the next 3 years I had welcomed another baby girl and spent all of my time being a stay at home mother and a supporter to my sick sister and helping her with her children.
After 3 years of being sick, my sister passed away and left me as guardian of her 3 children. I had gone from a mother of 2 to a mother of 5. My life had spiraled out of control with health being the last thing on my mind. After a year of keeping up with my new life I began to see how being unhealthy was holding me back from the life I wanted for both myself and my family. I began pushing myself to become healthier by eating better and exercising more. I pushed for over a year and had made a little progress, but not enough for my satisfaction.
This now brings us up to speed with starting the challenge. I had motivation and an enormous support group. I want to be someone that each one of these 5 children have to look up to. I started the first week of my journey feeling like I was going to starve to death! I then began to think to myself, if I go workout I can eat more today. Probably not the best way to look at it, but it got me to the gym!
I remember starting to run for the first time and thinking, I am really going to die right here right now. But I had so many things to keep me motivated this time around. I vowed to put my all into this. To my surprise that first week flew by and day by day I was feeling less hungry. I was shocked, could this really be happening, if this continues this will be easy, not!
I was going along feeling great, slowly changing my eating habits, gaining more strength, energy and slowly losing weight. Then we got further in and I hit a wall. I began feeling like I wanted to have more cheat meals and wanting to give up. Thank goodness for my support group at this time!
The more I was pushed, the more I wanted to push myself. I couldn’t help but notice how many goals I had been achieving and it was almost like a high for me. I truly wanted to push further to see if I could lose more weight, gain more muscle, run faster. For the first time that I could remember I could finally keep up with my family without feeling exhausted and it felt GREAT!
Now I am at the end of this challenge and looking at my photos, I honestly feel as though I am not one who shows the biggest transformation. Yes, I can see a lot of changes, but I feel I still have many more to go before I truly meet my goal. This will not be the end of my challenge! I now for the first time have the confidence, strength and determination to finish this out and get myself back to a place that I have not seen in about 12 years! Thank you NEM for putting up a challenge hard enough to help me find myself again!