My fitness journey started in October of 2017. I was scrolling through Facebook one day and saw a post about an 8 week fitness challenge. I responded to the post and Misty messaged me right away and set up a time to talk. After speaking with her, I decided I didn't have anything to lose (other than weight). So the first morning of the challenge I walked in. I was nervous and scared. We had to weigh in and get measured, there was a meal plan involved, and there was this energetic blonde woman speaking some harsh truths. Honestly for a split second I thought about walking out of those doors and getting a refund when that option was offered. I had never set foot in a gym before, had a complex about failing and then was told I couldn't say the "F" word or I would have to run to Food Lion and back. What had I gotten myself into that I couldn't call myself FAT?! Because the honest truth was that is all I saw when I looked in the mirror. But I stayed and went grocery shopping the next day and meal prepped. The second workout we had was brutal....I thought I was going to have to get carted out on a stretcher. I thought maybe I should just quit, but I can back for the next workout and it wasn't as hard. I figured there was no reason I couldn't do it. As I looked around the room each workout, I saw all these amazing women showing up class after class giving it their all and thought to myself I could give it my all too. I finished my 8 weeks and decided I wanted to do another. Sure, I had lost a lot of weight, but I still wasn't happy. Jena (the little blonde woman I spoke of earlier), had made it clear in many of our group pow wows that losing weight isn't what will make you happy. I knew I still had a long way to go mentally and needed another round. During this round I truly started to look at myself more than just the outer, but the inner too. Sure, I was physically stronger, but I was getting mentally stronger as well. Everyone I was meeting at the gym were so inviting, helpful and loving (tough love is loving too). I started gaining a tribe of people that looked out for one another. I found these were my people. After that last 8 weeks I decided I had found a second home and decided to become an aboutlete (member). I started doing personal training with Hunter to get my form down and help with my balance. Here I am over a year later still working out with him, because it's my comfort zone. By that I mean I still have trouble remembering form and exercises and he is a master at that. He definitely pushes me out of my comfort zone and pushes me to do more than I ever thought I could. The coaches are so helpful, knowledgeable, and honestly badass. The leader or "mom" of our family, Jena, is truly a magical unicorn. She has built a place for people to come, get healthy (physically and mentally), and be in a judgement free zone. Who doesn't want that?! The front desk staff rock what they do. I mean with as many cadets as we have they somehow mysteriously keep everything and everyone straight. They are kindhearted, loving and hard workers. What I have at AFBC could not be replicated. The people make the gym. So, I have lost weight, ran 5ks, deadlifted 135 lbs, done a million squats and lunges (these are all great things), but in the end it has been almost 2 years and I have not quit and it is all because of the people.