To kick off January, I thought I would cover a popular topic, health and reaching goals. 45% of adult Americans have made getting healthy and losing weight their new Year’s resolution this year according to statista.com. Only 8% of people actually keep their resolotuins though! While thinking of this daunting statistic, I wondered about the moms I know that have made health goals and stuck with them. One mom I know who had huge goals for 2017, and acheived them, sat down with me and told me how she does it.
Kathleen Mills, nationally qualified NPC bikini competitor, nutrition coach in training, Warrior Fuel Supps ambassador, wife, and most importantly, mom to 1 year old Alexa, had the goal to get back on stage within a year of having Alexa. She not only acheived this goal, she surpassed it! Kathleen is someone I look up to for her drive to reach her goals, her welcoming and outgoing personality, and her willingness to share her knowledge on fitness and nutrition with everyone who wants to learn.
Dani: You are so dedicated to both your family and fitness goals. Being able to get back on stage within a year was a huge accomplishment! How do you balance fitness and family and stay on track?
Kathleen: I stay on track by making fitness a family activity. When my husband gets off work on time, we all go to the gym together. If he is working late, I go with Alexa in the morning so I can still get my workout in. When Alexa was younger and couldn’t go to the daycare, I would put her in the baby carrier and get my workout in.
D: What does a normal day look like for you?
K: Wake up and have coffee. While I’m drinking my coffee, Alexa and I play and cuddle while she wakes up. Then it’s gym, meal prep for the day, and keep Alexa busy and on schedule for her nap and food while I take care of the house. Or, we play and spend the day together until Jason is off work and then its gym and dinner.
D: What advice do you have for other moms wanting to get healthy and start a fitness journey?
K: Just do it! You’re going to have days when nothing works out. Kids aren’t cooperating, unexpected problems come up, you lose motivation. Just keep to your plan, keep to your schedule as best you can. If things are really terrible, just try again the next day! There are days for me where Alexa just isn’t in the mood for the gym daycare and we have to leave. I’ll try again later in the day or do an at home workout. Sometimes days are so challenging we don’t get anything accomplished. On those days you just have to realize that you need to start again tomorrow. Don’t beat yourself up, but also don’t use it as an excuse to go back to your unhealthy habits.
D: You are so inspirational to others, who or what inspires you?
K: My husband inspires me He works so hard so that I get the privilege of staying home to raise Alexa. And he does it all while still staying on his prep schedule (he also competes in NPC bodybuilding). He works up to 17 hours a day and comes home and still goes to the gym. He says no to pizza and fast food and chooses to eat chicken and rice no matter how tired or rushed. I’ve never met anyone as dedicated as him. It inspires me to be better and try harder every day.
I also get a lot of inspiration from a former gym owner I knew who passed away. She would always push me and encourage me at the gym. Always asking me to do workouts with her, always encouraging me to challenge myself. She believed in me before I even believed in myself. She saw my potential and tried to get me to see it. I wish she was here today so she could see how far I’ve come.
D: What are some surprising things you’ve learned as a mother?
K: I’ve learned so much! I’m learning every day, it’s amazing. I think the biggest lesson I’ve learned is to let go. You can’t control every detail with kids, and at the end of the day, most things turn out not being a big deal anyways. I had so many expectations and ideas of how things should be when Alexa was born, and I’ve learned that as long as she is healthy and happy, everything works out.
D: What is Alexa’s favorite activity to do with you?
K: It’s actually our morning routine. I sip my coffee and play and cuddle with her. It’s what we’ve done since she was born. She loves it and seems to need that extra mommy time while she wakes up.
D: As moms, we all have “fails”. Do you have any funny or embarrassing mom fails you’d like to share?
K: There are plenty of diaper blowout stories, and definitely some wisdom in knowing your child’s poop schedule, but I think the worst fail was leaking at my show. I’m breastfeeding and to do fitness shows, you get this super dark spray tan so you look good on stage. I had gone all day without feeding Alexa (she was with grandparents), and hadn’t had a chance to pump. I started leaking and it dripped all down my stomach and gave me stripes and spots!
D: What has been the most rewarding part of motherhood so far?
K: I know every mom probably says this, but seeing Alexa grow up (Kathleen gets a huge sweet smile on her face when she says this). When she smiles and laughs it makes my day. Every challenge just melts away when she’s happy. Seeing her learn new things is the most awesome thing. She’s just the happiest baby.
D: Parenting isn’t all sunshine and rainbows. What has been the most challenging part for you? How have you dealt with or overcome it?
K: Guilt. I feel guilty or selfish sometimes because I do have my fitness goals and it does cause me to take her to the gym every day. I feel bad sometimes for spending that time on myself instead of her. But at the end of the day, I see she’s happy, she has fun in the daycare, she loves me, it all works out.
D: What’s next for you? What are your 2018 goals?
K: I’ve got some big shows coming up. Emerald cup to start the season, and then nationals! Nationals is a big deal, I have to be on point for my whole prep and can’t make any excuses. I’m trying for my pro card!
You can keep up with Kathleen on her Instagram @kcmillsfit223