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Hi! I'm Lacey!

I am a full-time working mom from North Alabama. I love my family, my friends, and my God!

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Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Testimony Tuesday - Heather

I've known Heather since high school but I didn't ever really get to know her well until our girls had dance class together last year. She is a stay at home to two precious little girls and a passionate Beachbody coach. Heather is super sweet and friendly and so motivating and inspirational! I am so glad I finally got to know her better and am so excited to share her story with you!



I have had a very blessed life, however it hasn’t come without my share of struggles, just like you

 

I grew up in the small town of Athens, AL and was blessed to have two loving, Christian parents who took me to church, not just on Sunday morning, no I was one of those southern Baptist kids that was there every time the doors were open, and I wouldn’t have it any other way! My childhood is full of wonderful memories! A traditional southern home, everything from fried food on the table each night to Friday nights watching the local high school football games and Christmas parades downtown! We were immersed in small town life and it was fabulous! Both of my parents even worked in town at the local accounting firm and hospital!  I say all this because I never realized how special it was until I grew up, and wouldn’t you know God blessed me enough to be raising my family in the same town!!! 

 

Now to the struggles, my main struggle: 

 

I began struggling with my weight from a very young age.  Around 4th grade I realized that when I looked down my thighs were bigger than most of my friends, and I seem to have a belly they didn’t have! This was just the beginning! I was short and the writing was on the wall that I wasn’t going to grow much more! Time ticked by and nothing changedI only became more self-conscious and more embarrassed to not look the same as my friends, who were soon wearing two-piece swimsuits and getting attention from the boys! However I didn’t have a clue how to change things! Finally at an all time high weight in 11th grade I was formally diagnosed with ADHD and began taking Adderall to help me! While the medicine was great for my academics it left me with no appetite, which allowed me to honestly forget to eat and the weight started to drop off!  I loved how that felt, all of a sudden I was fitting into the trendy clothes and even the boys were starting to pay attention to me! This left me with a very unhealthy outlook on food! I had always thought that “skinny” was literally just something you were either born with or not, and I was just not so lucky! I began to equate eating with being fat, I would eat very little and even after moving to college and being on my own would punish myself after a splurge by maybe not eating for a whole day, even though I knew this left me lightheaded and hungry! Anything to stay skinny! 

 

Well God is good and this sweet, cute guy I met a few years ago on a mission trip in Arkansas named John came back into my life and, well we started talking again as we had both recently become single – you know you remember instant messenger!!! After a couple of months talking online we decided since I was in Auburn and he was in Atlanta finishing up his engineering degree at Georgia Tech we should actually spend a weekend together, no romance discussed! Well low and behold that Valentine’s Day weekend was when it worked out and yes…we started officially dating on February 15, 2003! I was just 18 but I knew this was the man God had for me!! 

 

Happiness set in! I was thrilled to be in a healthy relationship and IN LOVE, but along with that came weekends where we ate tons of comfort food (aka junk) and laid around watching movies together! Well our love of being lazy together continued and we both managed to gain about 10 to 15 pounds over the course of our first year together! One of my favorite things became cooking for us! John was tall and very thin so the weight was good for him, not so much for me! However I did manage to start paying attention enough to maintain, although it wasn’t the healthiest ways still! We walked down the on December 18, 2014 and from there the happiness went up but so did the scale! 

 

We got pregnant when I was at my heaviest weight to date but were so excited, however unfortunately that ended in miscarriage! What a hard time this was for me, but God used it for His glory! As a 23 year old freshly graduated elementary teacher at her first job God used this as a wake up call to remind us that we were NOT in control and it wasn’t just about our plans.  He was the one in control and we needed to be in His will for our lives! Through this loss we became closer as a couple, we became closer to God, and we realized that “the john and heather show” needed to step back a bit! I was blessed to have been hired just a month prior to teach kindergarten at a local Christian school, and while I hadn’t shared my pregnancy or miscarriage (which all took place within a weekend basically), many ministered to me unknowingly through those tough months! God always places you right where you need to be! He has since used this experience for John and I to minister to others going through the same thing! What a blessing! I’m so thankful for this wake up call, even though all I had ever wanted to be was a mother, this was not the time AND God wanted to bless me with the experience of teaching kindergarten for 4 years and the bonus of coaching JV and Varsity volleyball for 5 years and SO much more! 

 

I did have a blast teaching and coaching through those years and John traveled a lot with his job as well, about 60% of the year he was gone so this was a wonderful way to grow personally and be so blessed in the process! In 2010 we felt that God had prepared us for a child and so in that vision I quit teaching and sure enough became pregnant that fall! We welcomed a healthy baby girl, Shyloh, to our family in June of 2011, and while we were thrilled our lifestyle was one of fun and horrible health choices, well about the time we started to maybe think of getting healthy in the fall of 2012 we became pregnant again! We were overjoyed, but once again less than healthy! I knew then what had to happen, so I began even while still pregnant to prepare for a huge lifestyle change after baby was born! We welcomed Penelope to our family in July 2013 and it was on!! 

 

Now with two beautiful baby girls 25 months apart whom I didn’t want to grow up and experience any of my insecurities or poor eating habits and horrible body image issues it became my mission to change! Not only to change my outward appearance, which needed drastic help, but even more! It became my mission to live out a daily example of food that was not viewed as a hobby, but as God’s gift and way of fueling the body He had gifted us!  It was my mission to show them that being active should be a daily part of life! Whether working out in my living room or running around the yard with them, swimming or walking around the neighborhood they would know that I valued exercise! This is when Beachbody entered my life! They knew what it was to have balance, and no magic pill or gimmick! Through my coach I learned that accountability was key and from there I began to embrace clean eating and daily workouts and see that they could revolutionize not just my, life but my whole family!!! My passion became helping others find what I had found, and wouldn’t you know that it falls right in with what I loved to do before I had my girls, teaching and coaching!!!! Now God is just showing off! I’m getting to live both of my dreams at once! A stay at home mom who gets to help others achieve their health and fitness goals! 

 

Over the past two years I have maintained a 35 pound weight loss and I’m not finished yet, and my husband has maintained a 15 pound weight loss!   Most importantly though is our girls know that we should use food to fuel our bodies and not eat just junk! They will even hold me accountable and ask if I’ve done my workout, or best of all jump right in and do parts of it with me!

 

This is just a short blip of my life and how God has richly blessed me, even through the valleys! I would be more than happy to connect with you if you have questions or are maybe going through something that you’ve seen mentioned here!  Thank you for taking the time to read my story, I pray that it has encouraged you in some way! May God bless you!


Thank you Heather for sharing your honest and inspiring testimony! 

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