In 2006, Rachel was diagnosed with Plantar Fasciitis. She was extremely over weight, a 30 year old college junior, and pregnant with her third child. She was tired, her back hurt, and she could hardly walk without a lot of pain. After coming across the Orthaheel website and reading up on how the shoes were designed to help her body support itself, she invested in a pair of Tide flip flops. The relief she felt was so significant that she wore them everywhere. After a few short weeks, her feet hurt less, she had no more pain in her hips, heels, arches or lower back. She began to notice she wasn’t in pain and didn’t feel slowed down by her body anymore. She’s quite the Orthaheel evangelist, exclaiming, “Little did I know that something as simple as a pair of shoes would lead to so many positive changes in my life including: weight-loss, an active lifestyle, better relationship with my husband, and more self-confidence.”
Here is Rachel’s first blog post, which she’s proclaimed:
Project Personal Growth- My attempt at rediscovering myself and improving my wellbeing.
The first thing you should know about me is I love my family. My husband and I have been married nearly 12 years. We have 3 amazing kids all of which are 4 school years apart. The oldest is a freshman in high school and we are very involved in their every day lives. In short, I am a mom. That means I am also a taxi driver, chef, personal assistant, tutor, housekeeper, life coach, marching band roadie and role model. Before I had children I was very active and fairly unorganized. I worked two jobs, kick boxed, practiced Americanized Taekwondo and Self Defense, and attended school part time. Once I had children it was time to prioritize and I fell right off that list. I completed my degree and had three beautiful children in eight years. By the time I was done I was extremely over weight, out of shape, tired, depressed, and not a reflection of anyone I recognized. I discovered that most of my stories began with phrases like: “Before I had children”, “When I was single”, “Back then”, and “I used to”. I was bored with myself and felt like I was failing everyone, hence the self-reflection. For the first time I realized I had no idea who I was. Being a mom was the entirety of my existence. I felt like there had to be more. While my friends were running marathons I had let my own marathon at home run me down. I decided it had to stop. No more excuses. It was time for a change.
Change started with a list. Things I had wanted to do and never got around to making a priority. The first thing on my list was to feel good. Not look good or even sexy. Just feel good. I started with a visit to my doctor. She did some blood work and made some recommendations to get me started on my new path. Thanks to some changes in my sleep patterns and some diet adjustments I began feeling more rested and energetic. I decided it was time to start working out again. Kickboxing empowered me in my youth, I missed that feeling. I craved that challenge and rush I would get each time I trained for a competition or entered the ring. When I started working out the first time I found myself road blocked. While I was having my kids I had some minor accidents resulting in a fractured tail bone and torn ligament in my knee. I also had wrist surgery two times to remove a cyst. The recovery process for those aided in my current physical health and over all wellbeing. In short I always had an excuse. Returning to the gym brought all of that to the fore front. I had my first break through in a spin class. A friend of mine dragged me into the class and assured me I would be able to keep up. I was scared to death that I wouldn’t be able to stand up on the bike. It wasn’t long before I realized that standing up on the bike was much more comfortable than sitting down on that little seat. I walked out of that class feeling empowered and alive like I had so many years before. My thought process changed after that. I no longer saw what I couldn’t do. I began trying everything in the gym as though I had never done it before. Those road blocks in my head were gone and I felt great.
Making myself a priority from skin care to free time has changed my life and my attitude. My family loves the changes in me and I finally feel like I am the kind of parent they will want to be and a real example for my girls. I set time aside for myself now. I seek out new challenges and look for new experiences. Not only am I getting healthier, I’m happier. This weekend was a prime example of my new attitude. After a very busy week at work and at home with the kids I spent all day Saturday throwing a baby shower for my sister-in-law and entertaining family from out of town. Therefore nothing got done at home. Instead of spending my Sunday a slave to the laundry room and kitchen I divided the chores up among the rest of the household and took time out to play football with my kids in the yard.
I have several items left on my list to accomplish but I feel like I’m making some great strides in my own Project Personal Growth.