I never was a 5AM’er…
Hi there. My name is Laura Hargreaves, and while I have been, for as long as I can remember, one or more of any of the following – avid runner, dance teamer, soccer player, swimmer, crossfitter, and general worker outer – (always at an amateur level – but most often holding my own), what I have NEVER BEEN is a 5AM’er. What exactly is a 5AM’er, you might ask??? They are the innately dedicated species of humans that wake well before dark o-thirty, and hit the ground running, with one form of exercise/practice or another. You know the ones that I speak of. It may be your boss, your best friend, or even your spouse. No matter what, they make it a priority, and pull themselves out of a perfectly warm bed to make that happen. Now to maintain my mental sanity, I make one of them happen EVERY DAY, however, I prefer to do that sometime after 9AM, or truth be told, I am even happier anytime after the noon hour.
That was until something very profound in my life changed…
Let me back up a bit to exactly one year ago THIS MONTH. I am in my mid 40’s, happily married to an AMAZING sports chiropractor who puts me back together every time I fall apart, (literally and figurtively), and have 3 WONDERFUL children, from 11 to 4 years old. It is fall in the Carolina’s, and in a 3 week time period, all of the kids come down with one form of sickness or another. This leaves yours truly on the couch loving, nursing, cuddling, snuggling, comforting, and reassuring one, or all of them, full time, for almost a month! I am fortunate enough to be a stay at home mom, and very happy to be in a position to be able to do this. However, backing up to the sanity piece, what I am NOT ABLE to do on a regular basis when my kids are sick, is make it to the gym to bang and clang some weight around, get my sweat on, and in other words, get my happy on. I COULD however, make this happen if I could make it to the gym at 5AM before the hubs leaves the house to put other athletes back together and actually get compensated for it- BUT, you all know me by now, and that was NOT AN OPTION!
As a result of spending too much time on the couch, I also began to spend WAY TOO MUCH TIME on social media and the web in general, as that was my only outside connection with the “real world” – lol. I came across a post from my dear friend Judy- she is about 5 years older than I am, and what she said TOTALLY caught my attention. The words of that post identified with many of the same issues that I struggled with DAILY, in spite all I did to remain ahead of the game. Judy already had nutrition figured out as far as I was concerned. She was juicing WAY BEFORE it was cool, knew EVERYTHING about vitamins and herbs, and spent what I thought at the time, was INSANE amounts of money at places like Whole Foods and Trader Joes on anything organic. She was ranting and raving about how “her life was changed”, and her “energy was through the roof”, “lost some sticky pounds”, “mental clarity”, “mood balance”, blah blah blah…. (I do have to admit however, the mood balance and the way Judy was looking in her profile picture were the MAIN reasons I reached out)- I sent her a message wondering what the heck she had a hold of. I also figured that what was good enough for “Juicing Judy”, would also be valid enough for my “Nutrition Nazi” husband. She immediately got back to me, I ran the information by Matt, (YAY!!!! He could find NOTHING bad with the nutritional profile), and by the following Monday I had a 30 Day Isagenix System sent to my door.
That was November 11, 2014. I DISTINCTLY remember after less than 2 weeks on the program, DANCING AROUND my kitchen cooking Thanksgiving dinner for a group of 20. Yes, my children had all recovered, and I was back at the gym daily, but it was something more. I was COMPLETELY off of caffeine. I no longer reached for a glass of wine in the evening JUST TO MAKE IT the few hours left until bedtime, looking for that last burst of energy. My performance in the gym was skyrocketing. I had released some weight, that no matter how hard I tried, NEVER SEEMED TO LEAVE MY BELLY! And, I had found my SYSTEM that left the guesswork to the professionals. I no longer had to create the food wheel, I just had to spin it, and consume it. My mother walked into dinner that evening and cornered me. See, I was a closet Isagenix user. Being married to a high profile sports chiropractor, and a local athlete involved in the “scene”, at first I was very skeptical of the validity of it all. While I wanted to believe in it, at my core, I still wasn’t sure. Again, enter ‘the mother’. The one who sees all, knows all, and believe me when I tell you, she saw right through me. Just like she did when I tried to tell her that I didn’t have anyone in the house when my folks were out of town in the Summer of 1989. She looked at me that Thanksgiving one year ago and said,”Laura, I am your mother, and I know you are up to something. You look FANTASTIC – your skin looks good, your hair looks good, your little belly isn’t sticking out, and for God’s sakes, you are not even BITCHY anymore. Whatever you are doing, I want some, so tell your mama RIGHT NOW what it is”. My mom started the program shortly thereafter, and released almost 50 pounds before her 50th High School Reunion. She grew her beautiful hair out, and as I look at her now, and I am INSTANTLY reminded of the mother of my youth. She looks and acts EXACTLY the same as I knew her when I was a teenager and even younger. I love looking at her like that, and knowing that she gave herself the gift of health and vitality. I never shy away from sharing this now, and would shout at the ROOFTOPS if they allowed me to tell everyone I knew just how important it is to put the most nutrient dense food and vitamins in their bodies.
Alright- back to the present, and the most recent portion of this journey. This year has proven to be full of the usual ups and downs of life, However, what stands out to me to be of the utmost significance, is the personal growth segment. I have grown TREMENDOUSLY during the last year. As soon as I began to realize that I had a hold of something that was SO MUCH BIGGER than me, things began to change. The financial blueprint of our family changed due to me sharing organically this wonderful product, my outlook on my day to day health, and the health of my family changed when I realized and began to incorporate this nutrition into ALL of our lives. My head began to get bigger (in a GOOD WAY), as I am at or near the top of the leaderboard every day at my crossfit gym. I can be a role model and a form of encouragement to women and men MUCH YOUNGER than I am, and be a reminder to them that life does NOT in fact end the older you get. Quality and health in life can continue INDEFINITELY if you go for it! However, the BIGGEST realization of this journey has evolved most recently. It began as a transformation for us as a family, and the realization of the most precious commodity – TIME… As life gets busier, and the hours in the day are just not enough, I made a decision. I knew that if I wanted to MAXIMIZE the impact that I had every day of my life, I needed to start my day earlier. One Monday, in early November 2015, I became a “5AM’er”. For the first time in my life, my feet hit the floor with ENTHUSIASM every day at dark o’thirty to join the rest of my pre-breakfast club crossfitters at Stax Charlotte to get our sweat on. For the rest of the day I am available, present, and driven, to give my all to everyone who I may do life with – whether stranger or family. With this new outlook and time frame, “two-a-days” are now a normal reality for me…who knew?????
Had it not been for sick babies during that Carolina Fall, and a real hard look at what I was fueling myself with, I may not HAVE EVER become a member of this club. I know that for many of you this may not be much of an accomplishment, as it has been part of your routine for years. However, other than my cocktailing/student days at UNLV working at the Hard Rock Hotel in Las Vegas, and still being AWAKE at 5AM, or running many a road or trail race in my past, that time of day was NEVER a reality that I looked forward to. Now, thanks to a renewed mindset, fine tuned nutrition, a GLORIOUS OUTLOOK on all of humanity, and not wanting to miss out on even a MINUTE of every day of this awesome life- I am so proud to claim myself as a 5AM’er, and am NEVER LOOKING BACK!!!!
Peace and love,