I am so excited to introduce you to Kayla! I first “met” Kayla through twitter when I began blogging. Since then, we have shared exercises, stories and cheered each other on in our running adventures. I love seeing what she’s up to and right now, it’s training for the NYC marathon and she’s running for a great charity!! Here she is..
What was your aha moment (when you decided to exercise and lead a healthier lifestyle)?
I have always been active, playing soccer since I was a tot and running track since 6th grade. I continued on through college and played both soccer and ran track at the University of North Dakota. After college, I transitioned from being a hurdler + soccer player to taking on “longer” running and ran my first 5k and 10k. I also took up yoga and pilates, I loved how they made me feel lean and strong in a different way than the heavy lifting I was required to do in college.
Did you go all in or build over time?
A little of both! I definitely enjoyed the fact that I didn’t have a schedule to follow or practices to be at, so I built slowly over time because I knew I wanted to create a life long passion.
Do you prefer exercising alone or in a group?
Both! I love running the trails alone, road running is way more fun with friends and I enjoy group exercises classes (Zumba, pilates, yoga) to mix things up!
What’s your go-to form of exercise?
What’s your favorite time to workout?
Lunch time….I’m big on the #runch concept…6 miles for lunch is the most refreshing and rejuvenating way to spend my lunch hour, a quick shower and I am pumped to be back at my desk working.
Does music motivate you?
It does….it releases my inner hip side, too. It is the only time I listen to pop!
What’s your must-have song?
Right now, I am huge on Lissie or Trampled by Turtles.
How many nights a week do you cook dinner? 4-5
Do you meal prep or make it as you go?
Both…totally a mix depending on what we have going on during the week! If we are busy, I prep ahead of time, but my girls (ages 5 and 3) both love to help in the kitchen and it is a great way to bond after their days at preschool + daycare.
What’s your favorite recipe? We love making curry!
What do you consider your greatest accomplishment to date?
My two amazing little girls! But after that, I’d have to say running the 2014 Los Angeles Marathon for Every Mother Counts to raise awareness for maternal health in the United States and around the world. The race day itself was 95 degrees warmer than my “warmest” long run in Northern Minnesota, I was dizzy, hyperventilating and walking for a good chunk of miles towards the end. But I finished, with the biggest smile on my face and knowing that I was running for moms around the globe carried me through what was the toughest run I have ever endured.
What is your current goal?
I’m running the New York City Marathon on November 2 for Every Mother Counts! I am working to raise awareness and funds for this incredible organization and their projects around the globe. I would love to run a certain time, but most of all, I want to run happy and healthy and experience this bucket list race to the fullest while running in my Every Mother Counts singlet. I am going into this race knowing I am lucky to have experienced two healthy pregnancies and deliveries. But it isn’t because I live in the United States. In fact, the United States ranks 60th (behind even some developing nations) in terms of maternal health. This ranking puts the United States on par with Afghanistan and Central African countries.
Today, 800 women will die giving birth. That’s one woman every two minutes. This happens every single day. Approximately 287,000 women die each year as a result of pregnancy and/or childbirth.
You know what?
90% of these deaths are preventable. With access to skilled birth attendants (midwifes, doctors), technology (ultrasound machines), medication and transportation, 800 more women would become mothers today.
We have the tools and the know-how to save these mothers, daughters, sisters, wives, teachers, doctors, caregivers and community leaders—if we make it a priority.
Every Mother Counts is a non-profit organization dedicated to making pregnancy and childbirth safe for every mother. We inform, engage, and mobilize new audiences to take actions and raise funds that support maternal health programs around the world. 100% of the funds raised by Every Mother Counts go directly to the programs and initiatives they support around the globe.
This year, to support maternal and child health around the world, I challenge you to take action. Stand up and support the women who are pregnant and giving birth here in the United States and around the globe.
I am running to make sure that other moms don’t have to. Many moms to be have to walk for hours, even a day to reach medical care during their pregnancies. I am taking on the New York City Marathon for Every Mother Counts. You can support my 26.2 miles by donating, every dollar raised goes directly to the work of Every Mother Counts. I am proud to run to raise awareness of maternal health in the United States and the globe. I ran the Los Angeles Marathon for Team Every Mother Counts in March and was honored and humbled to carry mothers around the world in my heart throughout the race.
Thank you Kayla for sharing your story and your passion for Every Mother Counts! I can’t wait to hear about your NYC experience 🙂
Want to share your own Simply Healthy experience or suggest a friend or family member? Email me at SimplyModernDance@gmail.com
Please ask Kayla any questions or support her in the comments!!