Real Life Fitness Stories: Meet Cat

October 13, 2017

We want to hear from you! If you've jumped on the bandwagon, you can inspire others to do the same. Whether you're a personal trainer or play Wii Fit with your kids, you're part of the family fitness revolution. If you've made fitness a priority for you and your family, we want to know about it. I want to feature your story, your successes, challenges, and tips.

All you have to do is answer these questions and email the answers to Please send a photo we can use, too.

Can't wait to hear from you and be inspired by YOUR story!

What is your name and what town are you from? My name is Cat Silverman. I recently moved to Phoenix, Arizona.

Who makes up your family? Myself and my daughter, Izzy who is eight months old.

Briefly, tell us your struggles. I made the decision to be a single mom this past year. Largely, it's been pretty easy; my daughter is an excellent sleeper and a fun, easy baby, and my job was incredibly accommodating. I got to work from home for the first five months of her life and my mom flew out to live with me for the first two of those. I now work three days a week from the office and then do fringe hours three other days while she's still asleep. 

I'd never really had to take care of myself before my daughter was born. I'd been a cross-country runner in middle and high school, but quick trips to my apartment's gym a few days a week and eating out every day kept me in pretty decent shape once I hit the working world post-college. Once she was born, I couldn't just head to the treadmill every day. I found myself struggling not just to drop the final 15 pounds after her birth, but struggling to keep up my energy and be the best mom I could be. Add in my struggle of cooking healthy foods and I honestly felt like I was on a path to letting myself go before she was even one.

What was the turning point that made you change the way you care for yourself? About five months after she was born, I realized that it took me basically a pot of coffee to get through the day, and I still wasn't even close to fitting into my old clothes. I lacked energy and wanted to eat a ton of sweets. I realized I missed the days when I ran a few miles every morning - not just for the relaxation that running has always brought me, but because of the person that I was when I was at my healthiest. I realized that I could do all the crafts and fun pictures I wanted for my daughter, but I wanted her to grow up seeing me as my very best self. I couldn't expect to raise a strong, confident girl if I wasn't the very best role model I could be. 

I signed up for Stroller Strides (a part of the Fit 4 Mom franchise) that next week.

How have you implemented (or plan to) your new habits with your family?  It started with Stroller Strides twice a week. The very first class, I ate some pasta ahead of time and almost threw it up in front of the other moms. 

I started to meal prep for myself. I now order Hello Fresh twice a month to add some variety to my meals, and I make family-sized pasta to bring to work for lunch so I don't fall into a rut of fast food. I bought a Fitbit, and I track my calories and protein as much as I track my activity levels and steps for the day. 

Now, I do Stroller Strides twice a week and run three miles on my own three other times a week. I've completed two 5ks since February, and I'm signed up for the Rock and Roll Half Marathon next winter. I make sure my daughter sees me having fun, whether it's out for a run and singing to her or going for a swim and teaching her how to kick her laps. I want her to see that I'm healthy and happy and thriving, even if our family isn't what most Americans consider to be the most conventional. 

The picture above is from Stroller Strides at the Mother's Day 5k. My daughter's father got her ready in the morning and brought her to cheer me on while I ran (blissfully!) stroller-free. By January, my goal is to comfortably run a 10k with a stroller.