My name is Laura Mattingly Anglin. I am a 31 year old woman. I am a mother of two young sons, Lucas who is 5, and Ethan who is 1, and I have never put them in daycare. I want to raise them, and be their sole care taker. I also work 2 part time jobs. One as a hair colorist/cutter, and the other as a child care worker for the YMCA. I am divorced from my oldest son’s father, and engaged to my youngest son’s father. I am very over weight, and tired a lot. Everything I have just informed you about is what I have let define me for the past 10 years. Although these things are facts, I have found that they in no way, shape or form truly tell you who I am as a person.
I have found that it is easy to hide under baby weight. It is easy to keep yourself busy with the children and everything they want and need. But, what about what I want and need? I did not recognize myself when I looked in the mirror. Not only, that but I had lost my sense of fashion.
I constantly wore elastic, and hid under big baggy clothes. Most importantly, I had lost my inner athlete. I grew up very active, playing sports, and loved being on the lake. I had let myself become a lazy, always lethargically tired woman, and I was miserable, therefore making everyone else around me miserable. Something had to change. Queue Spartan Race!
On April 21st, 2012, I attempted to do my first race of any kind, the Indiana Spartan Founder’s Race. My fiancé, who is the Spartan Race Indiana Manager, had signed me up behind my back. I was furious, but had laughed it off thinking that he was crazy, and that he knew that there was no way that I would really actually have to do this. I was in no shape to attempt to walk 5 miles, let alone run an insane obstacle course race! Honestly, running with my overly large breasts, is an obstacle in itself! Bottom line, I did not take the sign up seriously. April 21st came, and I found myself at the Starting line, dancing to Katie Perry’s, Part of me, being blasted by DJ/Emcee Billy Gotti! I really Identified with the song, and felt empowered by the music, yet naive to what lay ahead, then the cannon boomed! Fear set in, then heavy breathing, then the thoughts OMG over and over. I was cussing my fiancé Jonathan left and right, and bitched and moaned, and was on the verge of crying until I fell down a rocky steep area called The
Devils Backbone. Paramedics were called, and they wouldn’t let me go on. Tears streamed down my face, and then it happened. EPIPHANY. In that moment, I realized that all along, I had really wanted to do this, and to ultimately finish. I later went to the ER, and it turned out that I had a hairline fracture. I did not finish the Indiana Race. An array of feelings flowed through me as I recovered over the next six weeks. At the end of my six weeks, my fiancé had signed me up for two other obstacle races that paled in comparison to a Spartan. I was mad, but then I knew that I had been craving a finisher’s medal, and the feeling of accomplishment that would come along with it!
I can now say that I have completed two Obstacle Course Races. The Mudstash, and The Hero Rush. I feel good, and like I have found myself again! I now use my YMCA membership, and do group exercise classes daily. I am also inspired to eat healthier, and I journal my food, and exercise daily on myfitnesspal.com. Such amazing accountability. I have lost 11 pounds in the past 6 weeks which is an added bonus. My goal is to lose 75 more. I realize now that my sons deserve a mother with a happy, humble, positive, and actively spirited nature. Besides, they love going to childwatch at the YMCA to play while Mommy gets her time, so it’s a win win situation!
Biggest lesson I have learned is that as a woman, and as a mother, I owe it to myself and to my children, to role model a happy and healthy well rounded lifestyle. I want them to look back, and remember mommy chasing and nailing them with a super soaker, while playing tag! Life truly is short, and it feels shorter when you have growing babies that turn into ornery little boys, that then turn into mischievous “too cool for school” teenager dudes who will never want to hang out with Mom!
Thank you for reading about me and my journey on the road to living an active, happy and healthy lifestyle! At the end of this road, I see a Spartan Woman on the horizon, and she is me.
I dedicate this to Spartan Race, and my fiancé Jonathan Nolan. He had faith in me, and it didn’t matter that I was a size 20, weighing 225 pounds. He saw a strong woman and a Spartan Race finisher…………………….well now, when I look into the mirror, I see her to, and I WILL KNOW WHAT I’M MADE OF AT THE FINISH.