Katy Taylor

Meet Katy!
Katy is a business owner, fitness instructor, birth educator, leader. athlete, mom, wife, and an inspiration and friend to many.

Here is Katy's story:

I first heard about Stroller Strides while sitting in a parent support group with my six month old baby. As I sat there, back hurting, posture garbage, and not feeling confident or comfortable with the body I was in, it hit me that I needed to get stronger. It never occurred to me to think I needed to lose weight, or "look good in a bikini". Only that I needed to be stronger and I wanted more energy. And here was this other mom, standing in front of our group, singing "Wheels on the Bus" and doing bicep curls and I thought - YES! This is where I need to go!! So I went. And I almost threw up at my first class. And for most, that would turn them right back out the door, never to return. But for me? That was exactly what I needed. I felt like "me" again. I'd truly forgotten how much I liked to workout, to be outside, to be strong. It was easy to be "busy" all the time, and not have time to work out. That all changed when I found Stroller Strides.

The day I found out that I was pregnant with my third daughter, I was supposed to start a 5k training plan. I called my coach in tears, thinking I wouldn't be able to begin, but was told that I absolutely could! I ran my first 5k at 16 weeks pregnant and my first 10k at 18 weeks along. I never would have been able to do it without the encouragement of my coaches and friends from that FIT4MOM group.
Asher's birth brought with it postpartum anxiety that had me stuck on the couch, shaking most mornings. The only thing that got me up was knowing that I'd feel better after working out. Stroller Strides, and my FIT4MOM tribe, literally saved me those first few months. I knew in that timeframe that I had to find a way to give back what I'd been given. That was when I realized that becoming an instructor was more about supporting moms than teaching fitness, although that is super fun too.

After going through our Body Back Transformation program, and again, not because I wanted to "get skinny" but because I wanted to be strong. I even remember my first goal being just to get stronger. I didn't care about the scale - I cared about how many push-ups I could do. And I got strong. But more than physical strength, I gained mental and emotional strength. Through the hour I had alone a few times a week, I found myself again. I started running again, at first, just to get more quiet time in my day. And then I found I really loved it for the friendships and camaraderie I had. I joke that I ran a marathon just to get 4 hours alone. We moms will do anything for quiet time, won't we?
I have chosen to work specifically with pregnant and postpartum women, and moms of young kids, specifically because of that struggle. Moms lose themselves in the chaos of motherhood - the sippy cups and nursing wars and body image issues and Working vs SAHM. It's hard to find friends when you aren't sure who you are - are you mom? Are you YOU? Are you wife, partner, employee, boss? And if you're ALL those things, how do you balance it? And who can you talk to that gets it? Other moms. That's it. There are no mommy wars. The mommy wars are made up. There are mommies, struggling and striving and succeeding at being moms. The best ones they can be, and some days, that just the okayest mom, and that's cool too. We are all in this together, because we don't have time not to be. #themotherhoodisreal and you have to have a tribe.

I want my four daughters, and all the daughters and sons out there to know that their bodies are strong, and capable, and brilliant, and worthy. And so, so many other things that have absolutely nothing to do with how they look, or how much they weigh, or what the tag in their shirt says. They are valuable and important. And that moving our bodies is a gift, and we need to remember that and not take it for granted. I teach my girls to thank their bodies for what they can do, and celebrate the things they love to do: ballet, yoga, swimming, running, basketball, art, music, literature. I love that they've grown up seeing me love fitness, seeing me grow stronger as they grow. I love hearing them tell their friends that mommy can run really far, or do a lot of pushups. I love even more seeing them run really far, and do a lot of pushups. I love hearing them celebrate their intelligence, learn their crafts, practice new things.

To new mamas, I offer this: my oldest daughter, one day when she was about 7 or 8, was looking at me as I was getting dressed. I was standing in a bra and panties, and she went to run her hands over my belly. I recoiled, as I often do (she has cold hands, and I don't love having my belly touched). She said, no, mama, stop. I'm looking at the stripes on your belly. I made some sarcastic, offhand comment about how she gave the stretch marks to me, and she said "they're beautiful, mama - see, I was an artist before I even came out - I made these." Our children don't see what we see, they don't see stretch marks, they see art. They think we're beautiful. To them, we are home. Our arms are warm. We smell right. We are soft. Our smile and our touch can right their world. Our children don't care what we think we look like. They are wise little people - make the choice to listen to them.

#temaathletics #fit4mom #themotherhoodisreal

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