Farewell to My Hero… My Mom

By | Fit Moms for Life Pledge, Fit Moms for Life Six Week Challenge, Health, Lifestyle, Moms, Mothers, Transformation Center, Uncategorized

I unexpectedly lost my hero today…

My mom passed away peacefully in the arms of our family as we sang worship songs to usher her into her eternal place in Heaven. 21 hours earlier, she suffered a massive stroke in her brain and the doctors did all they could to keep her on life support until we could all get there to see her.

1 MomIf I could sum up her life it was:

  • love Jesus
  • love dad
  • love kids
  • love friends
  • serve others

While sitting in the ICU holding her hand, kissing her forehead and shedding a lot of tears, I decided I needed to write her a letter, which I want to share with you below. I read it aloud to her and to everyone gathered around her bed. It took me a long time to get through all the tears but at the end I had made peace with whatever was going to happen next.

I share this intimate and personal letter with you in hopes of honoring the incredible human being my mom was.

1 Mom 2“Mom, I can’t believe I am sitting here watching you lay motionless without the ability to do anything but pray and write out my thoughts. For 32 years, you have been my rock, the woman I looked up to. I know life is like a vapor and I thank God everyday for breath and health for all our family but experiencing this firsthand, with no warning, is more painful and raw than I could have ever imagined.

You were the perfect mom, you had unlimited patience, kindness and compassion and love towards me and every person you came in contact with. You were the rock of
health, never having gone to the hospital except to deliver your 4 children.  I can only remember one or two times in my life that you had more than a cold. 
I know we made you proud because you would tell us almost everyday. I have no regrets about our relationship. I am thankful for the nearly daily phone calls we would have in my 20s and early 30s, all the trips to and from Madison and telling you I loved you and you telling me the same.

You were the most amazing wife for dad. You have set a very high standard on who I will marry someday, that is probably why I am still single at 32. If this is your time to meet Jesus (I hope it is not quite yet), we will take care of dad and make sure he has everything he needs, maybe even a chef. I can’t change what is happening but I can step up my game and be a bigger man and extend your legacy here on earth. You are the most spiritual woman I have ever met and showed Jesus’s love each and every day. 

You inspired me to inspire others.

You believed in me when I didn’t believe in myself. 

I love you more than I have ever told you and you will be in my daily thoughts and prayers until the day we meet in Heaven.”

Your eldest son, 


While watching my mom quietly sleep, I kept asking the question how can her legacy continue on? She believed so much in the Transformation Center and all of the Fit Moms for Life programs.

Then it hit me, let’s create the Joy “Fit Moms” Scholarship fund to help others who desperately want and need what the TC and FM4L have to offer. I have set up a GoFundMe page in the hopes of raising at least $15,000 and hopefully much more. These funds will be used to give partial scholarships to the TC to those who apply.

Donate here->-> http://www.gofundme.com/fitmoms

The initial goal was to raise $5,000 but from the very generous donations so far, we should be able to far succeed that.  Thanks in advance for honoring my mom and giving the gift of life and transformation to a deserving person. Donate here->-> http://www.gofundme.com/fitmoms


You won’t have a dry eye after you open this

By | Balance, Flexibly, Health, In the news, Lifestyle, Mindset, Strength, Uncategorized

Early this morning, after climbing my 108 floors of stairs, I received an email from a friend asking me if I had heard of an athlete named Amanda Sullivan. I had not, but I quickly investigated. After only a few minutes of reading and watching some video on her, I had tears streaming down my face.

In a moment I will share a couple links to articles and videos of her story.

I talk so much about your attitude. Your attitude will make or break the quality of your life and your success or failure at reaching your fitness goals. On occasion, I get so upset and frustrated when I am talking with a client, or prospective client, and listening to them ramble on with a million excuses why they aren’t where they want to be or where they said they were going to be. They want me to feel sorry for them. I am a very caring person with only their best interests at heart, but I cannot feel sorry for them. I have met too many people who have overcome far greater challenges in life.

Amanda Sullivan is one of those people. Her abbreviated story goes like this…

She was an athlete working as an aid worker starting an orphanage in Mexico, when she was rear-ended in the middle of an intersection by a guy on his cell phone. It tore her body up quite badly and caused head trauma. After 5 weeks, she was out of the hospital. At week 6, she was walking to her first physical therapy appointment when an 81 year old man crashed his car into her, causing such severe injuries that she spent the next three years completely in bed. She now uses crutches and sometimes a wheelchair, but still completes mud runs and 5Ks.

In one of her videos she says, “We all have excuses, I just choose to ignore them.”

Click here to check out a video NBC did on her: http://www.nbcsports.com/other-sports/amanda-sullivan-overcoming-most-treacherous-obstacles

Click here to read about her story in her own words: http://news.spartan.com//overcoming-obstacles-amanda-sullivan/

If you are on Facebook click here to like her page and watch her burpee video, AMAZING! www.Facebook.com/AmandaSullivanSmiles

I decided that I had to “meet” Amanda, so over the past 30 minutes we have had an amazing conversation. These are the types of people we need to be surrounding ourselves with. I asked her if she could tell you one thing what would it be?

Here was her response…

“Don’t let the negative committee that meets in your head control you any longer. We tell ourselves every day that we aren’t pretty enough, fast enough, fit enough, smart enough, successful enough, good enough. We would NEVER be friends with someone who tells us the very things we tell ourselves every day!!

If we can control our thoughts, we will control our actions and therefore control our destinies. Silence the negative thoughts, the self-doubt, the fear. If you have a body, regardless of how it looks, YOU ARE AN ATHLETE. The more you face your fears, the more you will chase your dreams. You will discover that you are more able, more unstoppable & more beautiful than you ever imagined possible. You will stop waiting for a hero to come and save you. You will find that hero has been with you all along, gaining strength, courage and confidence with every workout, every goal and every race completed. You will finally learn that YOU ARE ENOUGH. You will learn that you deserve all the hope, light, hugs, compassion, friendship, encouragement and love that you ALWAYS give to others.

The time has come to finally live your life 100%. The time has come to stop making excuses. The time has come to be the HERO you’ve been waiting for. THE TIME IS NOW. You’ve got this!!! You always had it (you just didn’t realize how awesome you truly are until now). “

-Amanda Sullivan

Life is too short to put up with the “vampires” in your life who tell you that you will never succeed or who sabotage you as soon as you begin to see progress. I hope you were inspired by Amanda’s story and attitude. Let’s get up off our butts and MOVE! I have worked out twice today already, but I think I will do a third because I am so fired up right now.