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Our Corner

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From our Instructor Nicole....

I first met Diana and her son, Grayson, just over a year ago when they joined our Stroller Strides village. The two of them quickly became staples at our Chesapeake classes. She recently joined her first session of Run Club and has blown me away with her efforts and accomplishments. It’s women like her that keep me motivated to keep learning and be the best coach/instructor I can be. So, thank YOU, Diana.

When she isn’t tailing just steps behind her quick little explorer, she can be found hustling through each class and spreading her cheer to each person she comes in contact with. Despite what her day might hold, she always dons a smile and still finds a way to put others first. She is consistently sincere, helpful, and so creative. Besides, any girl who shows up to class matching her son in full costume is a winner in my book!! Diana, you are a true gem! I love having you and Grayson as part of our village and proud to call you a friend!

From Diana....

Tell us about your Family

1. How old are/is your little one? What do you like to do as a family?

Grayson just turned 3. We like to go for walks around our neighborhood and chase each other around the couch in our living room. We also have epic Mario Kart tournaments and Grayson gives out high fives for winning.

2.What is your favorite part of motherhood? What one piece of advice would you give to a first time mom?

My favorite part is the snuggling. I am going to miss Grayson being able to fit his whole body in my lap for snuggles. I would tell a first time mom to go easy on themselves. Those first months are so overwhelming and sometimes it seems like you can't do anything right, but sometimes all you can do is make sure baby is held and fed, and that is enough.

3.How long have you been involved in FIT4MOM? What’s your favorite thing about it?

We started coming to fit4mom August 2018. I absolutely love the camaraderie that we have. I honestly don't think I have felt this much a part of a community since high school sports. It just seems like everyone shows up to support and encourage one another. You could show up on your worst day and ask someone you've never met for help and they would have your back. That is the community fit4mom has and it is amazing.

Tell us about You

1.What are the recent accomplishments that make you feel proud and successful?

I recently joined run club and every week I am going a little farther than the last. I wanted to be able to run a 5k and now I can go even farther than that. I am hoping to be able to run the full 10k during the Wicked race. The sense of accomplishment this gives me is ridiculous. Like "oh you want me to slay dragons and take over the world? On it."

2.What is your greatest challenge?

Accepting things that I can't change. The last few years have had a lot of things going on with my own health and being responsible for my father who has Alzheimer's and I was making myself sick with anxiety and frustration. I was taking Zoloft and seeing a counselor, but it just felt like everyone needed me and I was failing them because I couldn't fix the problems that were going on. The best advice I got was to give myself some grace and learn to accept things as they come. So that is what I am trying to do.

3.When was the last time you tried something new?

I don't know if it is fair to use run club for two answers, but I am totally going to do it anyway. Run club is my something new, I'd been doing stroller strides for a year and making great progress, but I decided I needed a new challenge and when one of my good stroller stride friends asked if I would do it with her I couldn't say no. I still kind of hate the first 5 minutes of every run, but I learn something every time I go out and get it done.

4.If you could ask for one wish, what would it be?

I was going to answer this flippantly, "oh a summer home in the Caribbean" or something like that, but it wouldn't be true. Right now the one thing I would wish for is another baby. We've been trying for over two years to have a second child and it hasn't happened yet. So still hoping and still trying.

5.What inspires you in life?

Books! Books can literally be the answer to almost anything. Bad day? Read a good book. Need to relax? Book. Bored? Book. Need answers? Book. Stuck nursing your child at 3 am? Book. The list is endless and as Stephen King said "Books are a uniquely portable magic."

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ACSM Personal Trainer, AFPA Prenatal/Postnatal Exercise Specialist, AFPA Group Exercise Instructor, FIT4MOM Certified Running Coach, Stroller Strides Certified

Fitness and exercise have always been big parts of my life. I am an avid distance runner, soccer player and former gymnast. After earning my Bachelors in Health from the University of New Orleans, I worked with postoperative athletes in orthopedic physical therapy. I also did one-on-one personal training and taught small group strengthening exercise classes. In April 2015, I proudly added “Mom” to my resume!

Being new to Virginia, I was overwhelmed with the idea of having a newborn in a new place with no friends or family. I attended my first Stroller Strides class when I was eight months pregnant. I was immediately impressed with the community and I knew it would be a great fit for me and my son, Colin. I began attending classes regularly after Colin was born - who is now 4 years old. I have since added 2 more children to our family (Hannah & Mason) and we all continue to benefit from FIT4MOM programs physically, emotionally, and socially. Becoming a Stroller Strides Instructor and Run Club coach helps me combine two of the most important things in my life – motherhood and fitness. Having focused much of my training education on Prenatal and Postnatal Exercise, I’m honored and excited to help other moms reach their fitness goals while having fun and spending time with their children.

1. What are your 3 favorite foods? Mama’s cooking, boudin, and whiskey.

2. If you were to create a slogan for your life, what would it be?

“Keep on keepin’ on!” – Joe Dirt. Wisest words ever spoken.

3. What item that you don’t have already, would you most like to own?

The endurance of Mo Farah and the legs of Beyonce.

KEEP READING....

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It's time for our Annual School Supply Fundraiser! This year we are collecting items for the wonderful people at Seton Youth Shelters. They provide a safe haven, counseling and outreach services, 24 hours per day without charge, to assist youth in crisis throughout Hampton Roads, with the goal of reuniting families.

From now until August 26th you can drop off supplies to any FIT4MOM instructor at classes. As a thank you, for each packaged item you donate, you’ll receive one entry to win our back to school back to you momma’s bag filled with everything you need for class.

New to FIT4MOM? Donate a school supply at your FREE trial class and receive a special gift from us. Sign Up for Your FREE Trial Class Here

To learn more about Seton Youth Shelter please visit their website http://setonyouthshelters.org/

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Join us on August 18th as we come together to sweat for a great cause! We'll be hosting a FIT4MOM® fitness class at the Shack to help raise funds for Devon Dorsey, a former Stroller Strides instructor and single mother fighting stage 4 cancer.

Please RSVP with this link, we will send you an online waiver to sign ->https://9paufwvw.paperform.co

Class is donation-based, please make a donation as you can afford to the day of the class. 100% of the proceeds will go directly to Devon and her daughter.

More about Devon...

Hi my name is Devon Dorsey and I recently found out that I have a cancer that is highly genetic, aggressive, and fast moving - it is also a STG 4 cancer. I am also a single mom and I am pretty much parenting through this on my own. Any family out there reading this, get tested! My tumors are also akin to those types found in breast and uterine cancer so there are some other options for treatment, which is good and gives me a bit of hope to keep going. However, they are expensive and we are praying insurance covers at least a portion of them. My treatment costs run upwards of $20,000 plus per month. My oncologist squirrels away meds for me when she can because she knows the financial impact this is taking on us. Our lives changed so quickly a year and a half ago and now they are about to change again due to medical bills piling up. I ask for prayers that I am able to get a solid short and long term plan in place for my daughters care should I die. I also ask for prayers that I may be able to get the continued treatment I need and have more time with my amazing girl!

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What does your company do?

The company sells things such as; purses, totes, sunglass case, towels, scarfs, organizations tool, baby items, jewelry, home decor etc. There are two options to purchase: 1) through my link. 2) You can also host a party whether it be Facebook party or a live party at whatever location you choose and you receive hostess credit towards product once your party qualifies with a $200.00 order. In addition, you can get the product personalized so our products make great gifts or great gifts for YOURSELF!!

What would local parents love about your business?

Local parents love the fact that Thirty-One has something for everyone; thermals, family solutions, organization solutions, baby solutions, home solutions, etc. There is literally something for everyone and their product is so versatile as well.

Do you have any products/sales you're highlighting right now?

Yes, we have a special currently going on where you spend $35.00 and you get 50% off one of our 3 products (Around Town Tote, All About The Benjamin or the Colorblock Tote).

Where can we find you - online or in person?

You can find me both online or in person. Call me/text me at 757-635-5850, email me at: ams22123@gmail.com, you can join my VIP FB Page - or my website for Thirty-One to purchase

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Use the discount code STROLLER to register for only $25!

Get your December 9th holiday weekend off to a great start by joining the crowds of costumed runners through the beautiful historic streets of Olde Towne Portsmouth, Virginia and along the scenic seawall. When you’ve finished your run, you’ll enjoy complimentary refreshments of Starbucks coffee, hot apple cider, hot chocolate, doughnuts, and bananas. Running in the Santa Claus Shuffle will boost your holiday spirits – PLUS, you will be helping young people in our community who need a little extra guidance and the help of caring adults. Please join us and register today!

GET REGISTERED HERE

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From our Instructors Alise & Jessica.......Meet Erin! Our Mom of the month. Erin is wife of Jayme aka “shiny guy” at Trashmore and mom to boys Dean and Davis! Erin has been a member since 2016 and involving all of her family in the community on a regular basis. She is a true #momboss selling quality makeup and products through Younique.

She may hide in the shadows of her funky reflective sunglasses and large hat, but when given the opportunity she will surprise you! She once signed into class as “e-money” and I had no idea who it was! Quick with a good laugh during class and always eager to try new things!

She is constantly giving, giving love, showing true compassion to others and being such a great role model for her boys and her surrounding community. After the Hurricane scare, she and her family donated their storm items to those who really needed them. Only a few weeks later she made a big contribution to the Samaritan House through our diaper drive class at Mt. Trashmore.

She is regularly attending our Moms Night Out when she can making connections and handing out compliments. Not only is she full of love, positivity, and so much patience, AND giving. She really works so dang hard during class! Always perfecting her love of squats! Erin is always pushing herself to reach new limits physically and mentally. She is becoming a true leader of the pack!

It’s been a blessing to watch such a wonderful, caring friend like Erin shine through and show her true beauty and strength to all who surround her! She is a #bossmom and a true #OG no doubt about it! Congrats Erin! You deserve it!

From Erin....

1. Family:

My husband and I have been married for 9 years! We met at a little Mexican restaurant back in TN. I’ll never forget seeing him walk in the door, that was it for me! We have 2 boys. Dean will be 5 this month and Davis is 2. We love to get outside as a family: swim, play soccer, take walks. And we love to have movie nights!

2. Motherhood:

My favorite part of motherhood is the unconditional love and affection and the feeling of my heart wanting to burst out of my chest every singe day with the excitement and pride I have for my sons. Also, being a “queen” amongst boys is pretty cool too haha!

My advice for a first time mom would be: you have to take care of yourself before you can take care of anyone else. Don’t forget about YOU!

3. Stroller Strides

I’ve been involved with Stroller Strides since September 2016. But I took a 6 month “break” in August 2017-Davis wasn’t feeling the stroller naps! I usually attend classes at Mt Trashmore. Wanting to get in shape after babies and accountability is what brought me to stroller strides. But the friendships, adult conversation/laughter and awesome workouts are what make me stay. I love that I can set heathy examples for my sons and I love feeling stronger and pushing myself every day!

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From Sara….

Brittney is an incredible mom who shows serious commitment to her fitness routine. Rain or shine, weekday or Saturday, even after a long night shift as a Nurse’s Aide you will see Brittney’s smiling face at warm-up ready to take on the day’s workout. I’m constantly impressed by her hard work at each station and I always appreciate the witty humor she adds to each class. She cracks me up!

Beyond the workouts Brittney is active in our weekly playgroups, she’s a contributing member to our Facebook page (again with the witty humor) and rarely misses a Mom’s Night Out. Having her and Grayson, and occasionally Joshua, as members of Stroller Strides makes our Village stronger. Thank you for your dedication Brittney! Way to work hard and keep us laughing :)

How long have you been married?

How long have you been married? We will be married for 7 years in November, but we have been together 12 years.

How did you meet?

We both worked at AMC Lynnhaven 18. We just started flirting/talking one day and the rest is history.

How old is your little one?

Grayson is 16 months old.

What do you like to do as a family?

We love to be outside. We hope to take Grayson camping this fall.

What is your favorite part of motherhood?

Everything. Mostly his smile when he sees me. Makes everything better.

What one piece of advice would you give to a first time mom?

Don't be afraid or ashamed to ask for help when you need it. We have all been there!

How long have you been involved in Stroller Strides?

Since the end of May.

What brought you to us?

I think Sara gave me a flyer one time I was at Mt. Trashmore. Then almost a year later I got tired of sitting around doing nothing and finally signed up.

Why do you stay?

I stay because I want to set a good example for my son. It also gets me out of the house and I get to talk to some awesome mamas!

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From our Instructor Nicole....... This month is Kim’s 1 year anniversary of being part of our Stroller Strides village. She came to us with a tenacious little boy named Lincoln. Kim has proven to be so consistently positive in her presence, hilarious through her interactions, and supportive amongst our FIT4MOM community. If help is needed, she is there. And then there’s Lincoln …where do I begin?! His smile is contagious, his energy is impressive, his appetite is unrelenting, and truly a staple in our ever growing sea of kids! And this tenacious little dare-devil sees to it that I keep my first aid kit fully stocked. Together, they have brought my classes so much joy and I cannot imagine our Chesapeake Parks without these two incredible people. I am so grateful to have you both and our village and happy to be able to call you friends. **insert booty slap**

Get to know Kim....My husband and I met 12 years ago while working in the same department at the same company. We have been married for 4 years and our son, Lincoln, was born 2 years after we got married and will be 2 at the end of August. Lincoln has been the best gift to our family, he makes us laugh and learn every day. I love seeing him have new experiences and learn new things. I also love his belly laugh and the sweet moments that we share, like when he grabs my hand to walk with me or offers me a kiss or hug unexpectedly. As a family we travel regularly (since both of our families live in other states), but in our spare time we just enjoy spending time together, whether that's a walk after dinner, trying out a new playground, going to the zoo, or going to the beach.

In March of 2017 my husband accepted a new job position at Dollar Tree in Chesapeake and that resulted in a life-altering move for our family. To say that I was not exactly on board is an understatement. I was beyond sad to leave my family, friends, church, and job. The transition to being a full-time mom in a new town where I knew no one was a difficult one for me. However, a month after we moved I began attending a bouncing babies class at the library and was lucky enough to meet Kate Workman and her son Cale and we became fast friends. Kate is who introduced me to Stroller Strides and I couldn’t be more thankful for her friendship and the decision to join Stroller Strides.

I joined Stroller Strides in August of 2017 and currently attend classes on M-W-F at Chesapeake City Park and T-TH at City View Park (I don’t always make it every day of the week, but usually at least 4 days). When I first started attending I was just looking for some way to work out with my son on a regular basis. Little did I know that Stroller Strides would become a staple in our daily routine. The thing I love about Stroller Strides is that it is not just about me and it’s not just about him, it offers something to me as an individual (a great workout), something to me as a mom (friendships and support), and something to my son (play time, play groups, a chance to get all of his energy out, etc.). I can’t say enough about the way Nicole and Meghan don’t miss a beat in the way they support us in all aspects of our motherhood journeys. The workouts are always hard, but they always make sure to offer options for all fitness levels. I love that the kids are treated as members, not just the moms, so the workouts are tailored to keep them engaged as well. I am challenged to be active and strong each day and Lincoln gets to witness that and be a part of that (I love seeing him try to do a pushup or a wall squat!). We started because I was looking for a way to get involved in something for my son and I, but I come back every day because of the best group of moms that I could possibly be surrounded by.

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It's time for our annual school supply fundraiser! Items collected this year will be donated to some wonderful teachers at Bird Neck Elementary. For each item you donate you'll get an entry into our raffle to win an "all about mama prize pack", valued at over $150!

Donations can be dropped off at any of our classes from August 27th - September 8th. Instructors will collect all donations and track your entries. Items will be counted by package -example: 1 pack of pencils = 1 entry

Most Requested Items:

-Tissues

-Sanitizer

-Clorox wipes

-Expo Markers

-Post it Notes, and

-Colored Card Stock

- Ziploc Bags

-Highlighters

-Sharpie Markers

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From Kim our Instructor…..

I’ve known Emily for a little over a year now. She is always smiling and always ready to put work in. Her positive attitude is contagious and she always willing to lend a hand. Emily has great taste in music and always helps me pump up my playlist. It’s a pleasure to have you and baby Blake as part of our tribe. Thank you for being so awesome.

From Emily…..

1) Tell us about your family -

What do you like to do as a family?

Baby Dance Parties--While cooking dinner for the fam Blake and I like to have "baby dance parties" in the kitchen. I hook up the speaker,and we listen to all music. Blake and I especially enjoy listening/dancing to Pitbull, Fleetwood Mac, Red Hot Chili Peppers, 80's classics etc...pretty much any type of music. Music was instilled in me at a very young age. Growing up, after dinner every night my sister and I would play guitar with my dad while my mom would play the piano. Music has always been a huge part of my life and I have enjoyed passing that love for music on to Blake.

Beach it!--We love to go to the beach. Trust me, like any toddler, Blake has his moments (often) but, when I get him out on the sand with his toys and little chair, hand him some goldfish he turns into the 'chillest' little beach bum.

2) What is your favorite part of motherhood? Getting to look at the world through a child's eyes again. It is so much fun seeing Blake learn and experience new things for the first time. I love that I don't always have to do something "extravagant" to get that excited reaction. It's the small things like: building a fort out of blankets, blowing up a balloon, Jumping around in a puddle etc that are so incredibly fun and exciting for us both!

What one piece of advice would you give to a first time mom? Don't forget about YOU! Pay attention to yourself. Take care of yourself! I tend to forget this often and have to stop and remind myself that one piece of advice. It is so easy to get lost in the day--I work mainly from home 30hrs a week while raising Blake. While trying to juggle a million things at once it is so easy to forget about the one most important thing, YOU!

3) How long have you been involved in SS?

1 1/2 years

What classes do you usually attend? I usually attend Kim's M,W,F Class at Redwing and sometimes Great Neck Park on Tuesdays and Thursdays.

What brought you to us?

Funny story actually. I googled mom fitness groups and found Stroller Strides. I was hesitant at first, I seriously almost did not attend the first class that I had signed up for. I have heard some of the horror "mommy group" stories from my sisters and friends and always thought I would just not be into it. But I wanted to give Stroller Strides a shot. It sounded different and appealing so I went..Can't knock it until you try it right?!

Why do you stay?

When I start my day at stroller strides, I have a better day overall! I feel better about myself and I feel good about getting Blake outside and around other kiddos. Kim is a rockstar instructor and I enjoy the workouts, not to mention her awesome music that she plays during class haha. I also stay because I absolutely love the moms. This group of moms, and I genuinely mean this, KEEP IT REAL and I honestly can't count the amount of times we have been in tears from laughing so hard. Together, we help lift each other up.

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This is long overdue! Kristin joined our FIT4MOM team as a Membership Manager this past January. This year is all about growth and our goal is to have supportive programs available to all mamas in our community. Kristin has been working on communicating with new mamas, helping them choose what program best meets their needs and helping them get scheduled to join our village. Working along side her this past year has been amazing! Denise

From Kristin...

I am from Northern Virginia and have a background in performing arts and nonprofit administration. My husband's job took us to Gaithersburg, MD when I was 36 weeks pregnant with my first son so it was the perfect time to transition into being a stay-at-home mom. Living in a new town with a newborn was very isolating, especially when I dealing with a colicky baby at home by myself. My friend recommended I look to see if there were any stroller strides classes in my area so I could get out and about with my son in a baby-friendly environment. I remember being so nervous about going to my first class... what if I wasn't fit enough to keep up? What if my son started crying and disrupts the class? What if I needed to feed him in the middle of class? Luckily, I faced my fears and ended up finding a wonderful community of welcoming moms, instructors, and kiddos.

When we found out my husband's job was bringing us to Virginia Beach, I immediately started looking up Fit4Mom classes in the area so I could find a new community for my children and I to be apart of. At this point, I have participated in Stroller Strides, Body Back, and Run Club programs and am a huge advocate of all of them, no matter what your fitness goals. I am so proud (and surprised!) at what my body is capable of even after having kids. I never thought it would be possible to be the strongest I have ever been in my life in my thirties.

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From Our Instructor Molly.....

I remember Kristin and Odyn’s first Stroller Strides class fondly! Mainly because I got to snuggle this sweet baby boy so his mom could workout. What struck me most about Kristin was her determination that class. There might have been some moments of “holy cow what have I gotten myself into!” However, Kristin persevered through the class and joined us!

Her perseverance and commitment to her health and happiness (along with Odyn’s!) gets Kristin out to class five if not six days a week! I have loved our pre and post workout chats. Kristin is always a kind, compassionate and loving listener to anyone who needs a friend! She is also incredibly welcoming to any new Mom who comes out to class. She leads with her heart in all of her interactions with our moms and their kiddos and we are so grateful to have Kristin and Odyn in our village!!

More about Kristin....

My amazing husband, Joshua, and I have been married for 4 1/2 years. We met and starting dating in high school and then continued dating all the way through college at Auburn (War Eagle)!

Our little man, Odyn, just turned one this month. When we have family time we love to spend it outdoors; hiking, biking or just walking around the neighborhood.

My faviorate part of being a mother is watching Odyn grow and change everyday. He makes me want to be a better person and to be the best that I can be.

I would tell her to hang on! The days seem so long sometimes but with the unconditional love from your little one and the support of other amazing moms(like my stroller strides moms :) ) she will get through those days. Also, Don't be afraid to put yourself first occasionally, everyone needs a few moments to recharge throughout the week.

We have been attending Stroller Strides since mid September 2017 and try to go Monday-Friday. I started for myself. I first came to SS because I needed to be able to workout everyday and have something to occupy our mornings while my husband was away. We stay becuase of all of the amazing women that I have met over the months, the awesome playgroups for Odyn and the killer workouts for me.

We would not have been able to survive those long months of military training without our Stroller Strides family!

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What does your company do?

I have the privilege of listening to people's wants, needs and goals financially and then together we create a plan to pursue these goals.

What would local parents love about your business?

Local parents would love to be educated on the options available to them to help them achieve their financial goals and be more confident about their financial future.

Do you have any products/sales you're highlighting right now?

*Knowledge of the BRS Retirement System- military families, with less than 12 years service, have to make a decision on by the end of the year

*Extensive knowledge of Military Benefits including TSP

*Investments, life insurance, debt consolidation

Where can we find you - online or in person?

Online at mmmckenna@firstcommand.com, phone 716-860-1996, in person at any First Command Office (Chesapeake-home office, VA Beach, Norfolk or Lynnhaven.)

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Let's Make a Difference!

One of the components of Our Village is our “Moms with a Mission”. Each quarter we choose an organization to provide you with a platform to help better the community where you live and play. We organize and inspire members to participate in activities focused on giving back to children, families and the environment.

This quarter we have chosen to support a local organization called 99 for the 1. A mobile homeless outreach program. Find out more in this video

Their Mission:

A one stop shop to make those in need feel good again. They can walk in one door, shower, shave, get clean clothes, fill a bag with hygiene products for the week, get a meal and walk out the other door feeling good about themselves. We don’t want to give a hand out, but more of a hand up.

We are asking for your help Mamas! Please help us collected the items below, instructors will accepting the items all month - These are the items that they are currently in need of:

Shoes

Socks

Underwear (new in pack)

Deodorant

For each item you donate you'll receive a raffle ticket to win an ultimate FIT4MOM bag!

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Sara Farrell - Questions from the wonderful Kimberly Applegate

1. What are your 3 favorite foods? My 3 favorite foods are my mom’s homemade spaghetti, a really good burger and pancakes.

2. If you were to create a slogan for your life, what would it be? When you think things are too difficult – dig deep. You may surprise yourself and find strength you didn’t even know you had.

3. What item that you don’t have already, would you most like to own? A yard service. Our yard is huge but instead of hiring someone to maintain it we bought a riding lawn mower. Ugh.

Learn More

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Kristin Shapiro

When my son was 4 months old I started taking Stroller Strides classes. I absolutely loved it! It was a great work out, it got me out of the house, and I was able to meet and connect with a lot of really wonderful mamas. As my son got a little older, it was getting harder for me to make it to class because the timing fell during his first nap of the day. I was determined to continue working out and lose the last of my baby weight but was also desperate for my baby to sleep. That's when I turned to Body Back. I went to a preview class and was absolutely hooked.

I was able to get a high-intensity work out and was surrounded by a group of strong mamas, but also got one glorious hour by myself twice a week. I also really liked the nutrition tracking aspect of Body Back. When adjusting to motherhood, I had developed a lot of bad eating habits while trying to survive those first few months of life with a newborn. The nutrition portion got me back on track with my eating habits, but with realistic menu items that my entire family (including my new eater) could enjoy!

I cannot recommend Body Back more for mamas that need that extra boost to reach their fitness and nutrition goals in a more hands-on environment. After participating in the program for 3 sessions, I was the strongest I had ever been at my life! ~Kristin S.

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From our Instructor Sara… I met Ali last summer at Mt. Trashmore shortly after she joined Stroller Strides. I immediately noticed her easy smile and welcoming disposition. I’ve truly enjoyed getting to know her and little Otto over the past few months. It is clear that she has a love of fitness and being active (hello, she can SURF!). But beyond all of her hard work and sweat you will see a woman who is an exceptional mother, a great friend and a key member of our Village. We are lucky to have you, Ali!

From Ali….

How long have you been married? How did you meet?

I've been married to Mal for almost 5 years. Believe it or not we are a match.com success story. He was stationed in Newport, RI and that is where I grew up, we went on one date and I knew this was the dude for me.

How old are is your little one?

I have one son, Otto, and he is 16 months old.

What do you like to do as a family?

We love to be outdoors, we live at Chix beach and there's nothing a little salt and sand can't fix.

What is your favorite part of motherhood?

My absolute favorite part is looking at Otto every day and feeling such love and awe for the little miracle he is. No matter how tired or worn out I am, his hug or smile is worth it all.

What one piece of advice would you give to a first time mom?

Never hesitate to ask for help!! If you need a break, ask for one. Don't worry about the small stuff, laundry can wait, order take out, use paper plates so you can toss em if dishes are overwhelming. DO you!

How long have you been involved in Stroller Strides?

My husband is in the Navy and we moved here in April 2017 and I think I joined Stroller Strides around July or August 2017.

What brought you to us?

Believe it or not Jess Schenck's mother in law goes to the same church as my mom and long story short, they got to talking and connected us.

Why do you stay?

UHH, cause ya'll rock. Otto has blossomed socially with the playgroups and play dates and I have met great friends who share the same interests as I do. It has truly been a blessing to find this group as you have become part of our family's routine. Keep on rocking!!

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What does your company do?

Usborne & More sells the most engaging, exciting and educational books on the market today!

What would local parents love about your business?

The company sells over 1,800 bright, colorful, and fun titles covering a wide variety of subjects and ages.

Do you have any products/sales you're highlighting right now?

Enjoy 14% off your entire order in February in honor of Valentine’s Day!

Where can we find you - online or in person?

Online. the link to my website to search books and make purchases is https://y6875.myubam.com

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  • WHAT WAS THE BEST COMPLIMENT YOU’VE RECEIVED?
  • Having my mom tell me I’m doing a good job with Ev.
  • LEGGINGS: PANTS OR NOT?
  • Pants
  • FAVORITE BOY BAND?
  • N*SYNC
  • Get to Know More about Kim!
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From our Instructor Kim ….I remember meeting Dani for the first time at the field house. She was new to class and like the rest of us a little nervous. As soon as we started chatting I knew this was her village. She walks into every class with a smile and positive attitude . Dani is always willing to reach out to a new mom at class, tell her story and share her experience at Stroller Strides. She doesn’t hesitate to welcome that mom with open arms. We have watched her grow as a strong and confident Momma, and as a friend. We will miss her and Ava. Wishing you and your family the best of luck Dani. Always remember we will always be your tribe no matter how many miles between us

From Dani....1) Chris and I have been married a little over 3 years. We were introduced by mutual friends at a BBQ in Monterey California and pretty much started dating that night. He’s hilarious and literally the kindest person I’ve ever met. We have our daughter Ava who is 16 months and we just found out we have another on the way!

We love being together. We love eating, cooking, hiking, going to the aquarium and the zoo and exploring our new areas every couple years. We are military so we move around quite a bit!

2) My favorite part of motherhood is watching Ava grow and do hilarious and awesome things like mimic us and develop her own little personality. My other favorite part of motherhood is meeting other mommas and babies and sharing this crazy beautiful experience of momming.

If I could only share one piece of advice it would be to get out of the house and find your tribe. Find other mommas who want to build a village and share in the experience. The feeling of support and the friendships that develop are priceless.

3) I started SS when Ava was 3 months old. I had found the group online after desperately searching for a something to help me get my little one out of the house. I was terrified to start and had to talk to Denise twice before getting up the courage to go. It was by far the best thing I’ve done for myself and Ava! We usually try to go to all of the classes when the weather is good, and you’ll typically find us at the field house during winter. We love all of the instructors and have a great time meeting new mommas and babies at each location.

We stay for the village!! Thank you SS for being our family, our friends and our support while we’ve enjoyed Virginia!

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1. What are your 3 favorite foods? Mama’s cooking, boudin, and whiskey.

2. If you were to create a slogan for your life, what would it be?

“Keep on keepin’ on!” – Joe Dirt. Wisest words ever spoken.

3. What item that you don’t have already, would you most like to own?

The endurance of Mo Farah and the legs of Beyonce.

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