Finding other inspirational moms who make health and fitness a priority is one of our favorite things to do at Stay Fit Mom. Our newest mom crush, Missy Mecham, is also a native to Las Vegas, Nevada and will not disappoint when it comes to inspiring you to live a little better. I reached out to Missy, whom I grew up living behind, and asked her to be our mom crush because I knew she had a love for running and had recently been sharing more about her healthy lifestyle via social media. Reading through her interview questions and answers I was blown away by her inspirational story and motivated to set some goals of my own. Every woman we have featured as a mom crush has a different story to tell but shares the same love for family, health and fitness. Enjoy meeting Missy and I hope you are just as motivated as I was by her story.
SFM: Can you tell us a little bit about yourself and your family?
Missy: My hubby and I are high school sweethearts and have been married 15 years. My husband Darren works for LVMPD and I’ve been a stay at home Mom for about 10 years now. I’m a group fitness instructor although life has gotten busy so I’m currently only teaching 1 Pilates class a week currently. I love getting to know my class members and helping them towards their fitness goals! We have 4 awesome kiddies – Luke is 14 and loves football and basketball; Riley will be 12 in a couple weeks (although she acts at least 15 haha) and just finished up her first season of cross country and Lacrosse; Chloe is 9 and loves gymnastics; Cole is 7 and also just finished up his first season of Lacrosse. The kids have me driving taxi most afternoons and evenings with all of their activities. It gets crazy, but I honestly wouldn’t want it any other way! My husband, Darren, works graveyard so we love to workout together in the afternoons and sneak in lunch dates when possible.
As a family we love to vacation, especially to Disneyland. We have been season pass holders for about 10 years now and it never gets old!! We are notorious for sneaking away for a few days just randomly. It is one of the only ways we can get quality time together.
SFM: When did your fitness journey begin?
Missy: I really started working out after the birth of our first child 14 years ago. I was working part time as a dental assistant so I would come home and put him down for a nap and would do a good ol’ Billy Blanks Tae Bo video. As Luke got older he would join in on the workout and then even ask for me to put it in for him to do on his own. Once I had our second child I was able to join the gym with a friend. We loved taking group fitness classes and got into pretty good shape. Right before getting pregnant with my third I decided I would give running a try. I had no clue what I was doing! I ran my very first race, a 10k and hurt my knee doing so. I got pregnant right after and was put on bed rest for most of the pregnancy so running was put on hold. I ended up going through physical therapy with my knee while getting back into shape with group fitness classes at the gym. I’ve made so many awesome friendships over the years at the gym! It was such an escape from mom life for me and I really enjoyed the 2 hours away. My kids all learned to love the daycare at the gym. I was able to work out for almost all of my 4th pregnancy until a little preterm labor scare right near the end. I fully believe I was able to have awesome deliveries and recoveries due to my fitness level. It was always frustrating losing the baby weight and getting back in shape, but looking back I’m so grateful for all I learned about fitness back then.
SFM: We know running is a big part of your life, what inspires you to run?
Missy: I struggled with postpartum depression and anxiety with my last baby. My hubby was working long hours and we had moved across town away from my friends and I no longer had my gym to go to. I needed something for just me, so I decided to give running a try again. I begged my hubby to buy me a treadmill. I made a goal to run a half marathon, found a training schedule online and got to work. I also somehow talked my hubby into running the race with me. Most of my runs were done on that trusty treadmill in the living room with my kids watching cartoons. It was awful, but I loved it! I loved achieving a longer run each Saturday! That first half marathon was in Orange County and it was harder than anything I’d ever done before. I absolutely loved that I made a goal and achieved it! I couldn’t wait to make the next goal- a full marathon that I would do here in Vegas.
I was hooked and ran lots of half marathons over the years and eventually set my site on qualifying for Boston.
SFM: You did the Boston Marathon this year among a few others, what were the highlights?
Missy: Boston was definitely the highlight of the year for me! At the end of the following season I had run the Cedar Half, Vegas Ragnar (which is just tons of fun) and started the year with the St George half(another one of my favorites). My training for Boston was awesome- The winter was so mild so I was able to train a little later in the day. This was perfect since Boston is run a little later in the day plus I considered the time change that would take place there. This was great for a fair weather runner, desert rat like myself. Sadly, the day of the Boston marathon it was cold, windy and rained the whole entire time. I had never even run in the rain before!! I didn’t perform as well as I would’ve liked to in Boston- My body freaked out and didn’t know what to do in those conditions, so I was determined to make up for it. I decided to run the Ogden marathon just 3 weeks after. Once again, that day was super cold and rainy as well! My body was just over trained and exhausted. It may have been more mentally hard than physically at that point. I decided I needed a nice long rest from distance running after that so I haven’t run any other races this year.
Missy: It was seriously such an emotional race! Despite the weather, the vibes and energy from the spectators were unbelievably awesome! Thousands of people come out to cheer the runners on, even in such awful weather! Once I realized my body wasn’t going to function the way I had hoped and that the time I had hoped to achieve wasn’t going to happen, I decided to just have a good time and high five as many spectators as possible. I had such a blast and smiled the whole time! My hands hurt from high-fiving so many people with freezing cold and wet hands. I even had the honor of running next to one of the bombing survivors who lost a leg in the explosion 2 years previous. I couldn’t help but cry tears of joy for her as she came back to face her fears and overcame! It definitely made me suck up my uncomfortableness from the rain and keep going! I couldn’t help but reminisce about the road that had gotten me there. I was so proud of myself and so grateful for a husband and family that helped me to get there! It was an unforgettable experience I will always cherish!
SFM: What’s next for you? What are your goals in terms of health and fitness?
Missy: I’ve decided to take a rest from distance running and try my hand at bodybuilding. I plan to compete in an NPC bikini competition March 2016. I started training at the end of the summer and already loved seeing what lifting heavy weights and really counting macros can do! It’s been challenging but a lot of fun too! At the end of a program I completed last month I rewarded myself with a fun fitness shoot. I’ve got a long way to go but this was an awesome way to remember what I’ve done so far and will be fun to compare to where I get next spring!!
SFM: What keeps you motivated every day?
Missy: The endorphins! I feel great after I workout! Running helped me so much with my postpartum and anxiety along with helping me beat the illnesses so many of my family members have struggled with from a young age. It’s so important for me to stay healthy!! Looking fit is a nice perk but I really want my kids to know how to eat well and exercise and treat their bodies well. I hope they look at exercise as just a regular part of their day when they grow up.
SFM: Is your family supportive of your healthy eating and fit lifestyle?
Missy: Yes, very!! My hubby started counting macros with me at the end of the summer and did the weightlifting program I was doing also, so it’s been nice to be on the same page. My kids are always sweet to offer me a bite of their treat but understand when I tell them I can’t have a any(I do have treats still occasionally). My daughter Riley loves to eat the way I do, so I will make double for her and I love it!
SFM: What are some healthy things you always keep in your pantry or fridge?
Missy: I’ve recently discovered Kodiak protein pancakes- oh my heck I love them! I will have one every day with a tablespoon of dark chocolate chips in them. It’s like a treat every single day. PB2 is another staple for me. My snack every night before bed is an apple and PB2, so good! I definitely stick to the basics and don’t mind eating the same exact thing everyday, it’s just easy for me. We’ve always got fresh fruit and veggies readily available. Almonds and cashews are always in the pantry as well.
SFM: How do you find the time to workout with all the chaos of motherhood?
Missy: It’s definitely a priority in my life! When I would train for a marathon most of my long runs were done before the sun even came up for the day. With my new training a lot can be done while the kids are in school and if I have a second workout for the day I will do it once they get in bed for the night. It’s definitely easier now that they are older and I have two kids that can babysit.
SFM: What is a typical day in the life of Missy like? (food schedule, gym, carpooling, kids sports, etc.)
Missy: My kids all go to a charter school but 2 are in middle school and my youngest is at a different campus. We are all out the door by 7:30am getting everyone to where they need to go. I will run errands and do house work on a normal day until my hubby gets up and then we will then go to the gym together. Of course not everyday runs like that. I do enjoy helping in the kids’ classroom and have a calling at church that will sometimes have me busy during the day also. You can usually find me at Costco and Target several times a week as well. They are both close by and so easy just to stop in. My hubby and I will go pick all the kids up together in the afternoon so we get a little more time together. We are usually in the car a good 1 1/2 – 2 hours in the afternoon depending on the kids’ activities. My younger kids get most of their homework and or reading done while we are in the car. We try to eat an early dinner, or at least prep it early since we all go our separate ways most nights. My hubby will leave at about 5pm and I will usually run kids around for a bit most nights. We aim for one date night a week if we can. Some weeks it has to be a lunch date- but I will take whatever I can get. Time together is so important!
Sunday’s are our only real day we are all home together. We will go to church together and then look forward to a yummy Sunday dinner. Usually a steak of some kind- steak is my favorite!
SFM: Do you have any advice for other women who may be struggling to accomplish their goals?
Missy: Just take it one day at a time! I’m such a planner but it can go so frustrating when I worry about long term goals. It’s so important to have those goals but most of us moms are just happy to have survived the day, am I right? I love it when I have a goal and a plan for the day and can stick to it. However, I’ve also learned to shake it off when things don’t go like I planned. It’s all a part of being a mom- rolling with the punches! Whatever you do, don’t get down on yourself!
Thank you Missy for sharing your story with us and proving that anything you set your mind to is possible!
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