Parent with A Purpose: Lacey Calkins

By Stephanie Stewart March 2, 2017

As moms, we all struggle to find the time and resources to get fit and healthy. With Spring weather comes the urge to get back in shape for summer. One of our local moms had the same struggles and decided to make a difference in our community by becoming a group leader for No Excuse Mom. Lacey has helped hundreds of busy parents in the Fredericksburg area to achieve their health and wellness goals and commits herself to reaching the community one workout group at a time.

I am happy to announce March's Parent with a Purpose, Lacey Calkins! Lacey is the group leader for No Excuse Mom Fredericksburg and No Excuse Mom Stafford. Let's see what Lacey had to say about her impact on our community.

What is your mission? What do you want to accomplish?
My mission is to not only bring health and fitness to the community, but to build friendships and to show women that it isn’t selfish to take care of yourself. Women wear so many hats in life and often we put ourselves on the back burner. With No Excuse Mom, we prioritize our wellness and show other ladies that if we can do it, so can they. My hope is that every woman in the community knows that there is a FREE resource out there for them to have an outlet to make fitness a priority.

What inspired/encouraged you to start your business?
Is there one specific moment when you knew this was what you wanted to do?
Fitness has been a big part of my life for many years, but it wasn’t until my family moved across the country due to a military relocation that I decided I wanted to make a difference in my community. I took a huge leap and stepped out of my own comfort zone and created this workout group, which also has many locations worldwide, in my community. I did it not only for other ladies, but also for myself. I have always been an introvert and being new to the area, I wanted to make friends and hoped to inspire women along the way. From that moment on, I knew that this was one of my purposes in life and it has lead me on a path to my best self yet!

How did your life before children influence the mom you are today? What part do your children play in your current mission?
Before I had my daughters, health and fitness wasn’t a priority. I ate what I wanted, never really worked out and didn’t take care of myself the way I should have. After I had my first daughter, I knew I wanted to be better for her. It took me a while to figure it out, but after looking in the mirror one day and not recognizing who I saw (physically and mentally), I knew I had to make some changes. I can say, without a doubt, that I am where I am because of my daughters. They inspire me to be the best I can be because if I am the best me, I can be the best mom for them. My journey has been very family oriented and has involved my husband and my daughters every step of the way. We work out together, run together, encourage each other and keep each other headed down the path we all want to be on.

What lessons/values are you learning through this process? What lessons/values do you hope your kids are learning?
I think that I have learned so many lessons on this journey. The biggest one being that I can make more of an impact than I give myself credit for. My Stafford No Excuse Mom group is the second group I have created within this organization and I think of many of my fellow members more as sisters. They often praise me and tell me how much they appreciate this group, but in reality, I need them just as much as they need me. My hope is that my daughters not only see me making health and fitness a priority, but they see me as a leader and influential member of my community. I want them to know that it is okay to get uncomfortable and vulnerable and step out of their comfort zone if it means helping others and themselves!

What do you do to take care of yourself and how do you make time to do it?
Being a mom of two little ones, one only being 2 months old, the main thing I try to do is to schedule my workouts like I schedule any other appointment. It is on my calendar for the same time every day and has become a routine to me. I make it non-negotiable and as hard as it is some days, I know that it has to be a priority to me. I was diagnosed with Fibromyalgia in 2010 and know that I feel so much better not only physically, but mentally when I work out and eat healthy. Being in the fitness industry, I hear a lot of different reasons why fitness can’t be incorporated in peoples lives and I hope that my story can inspire others to squash all the excuses and make it something they WANT and NEED! I also try to incorporate real, whole foods into my entire families diet. We meal prep a lot on the weekends which helps keep us on track during the hustle and bustle of the work week.

What steps can other families take to move their families in the direction you have taken yours?
Take baby steps! Start walking as a family, start removing one bad thing from your diet and add one better thing. When you make simple, small changes at a time, they add up to long, lasting changes. Don’t jump two feet in at first. Put one toe in, then one foot, until eventually you are where you want to be. The worst thing you can do is to dive in headfirst and expect it to last. It’s not easy and I remember as a young, newly married couple, my husband and I were a long ways from where we are now. We ate boxed food almost nightly, ate out more than I care to admit and didn’t move as much as we should have. We started adding more vegetables into our diet, removed any temptations from our house, cut out soda and drank more water and started a workout routine, but it didn’t happen overnight. Eventually, we actually started to like the new, healthier life we had formed and it didn’t feel like it was something we HAD to do.

Anything else of value you think would benefit our readers?

Surround yourself with like-minded people. Those who will encourage you, keep you accountable and push you to be your best. That is was No Excuse Mom is all about. We are far from perfect, have ladies of all shapes, sizes and fitness levels, but the one thing we all have in common is a need to put ourselves first, even if it’s just for an hour, once a week.