This week’s Warrior Wednesday is Laura! It has been incredible to see Laura’s transformation over her years as a part of the Bellum fam. Laura was brought to Bellum originally by her wife, Melissa, who was on a journey of her own towards health and fitness. While she may have started her membership as a way to show support for her wife, she quickly fell in love with the barbell, like so many others in our gym!
Laura’s consistency at Bellum for the first few years proved itself in barbell pr’s and feelings of confidence in and out of the gym. But Laura (and Melissa’s!) life was changed forever when they announced that Laura was pregnant in the late winter of 2018! Over the next few months, Laura brilliantly decided to use a time that many would see as a time of limitation, to get to know what her body was capable of. During her pregnancy, she approached every workout with an open mind, listening carefully to how she felt during barbell movements, high intensity workouts, and longer, paced workouts. She continued this mentality throughout her postpartum period, and counts that knowledge as invaluable, giving her a greater grasp on how to approach certain workouts and movements, as well as a sense of pride in having this knowledge of herself, and what she can accomplish!
Postpartum can be a difficult time. Many women struggle with feeling lost in their new identity as a mother, or with body image issues. It can be a very lonely time for new mothers, navigating uncharted waters. After the birth of their son, Benjamin, Laura decided to use her postpartum recovery and return to fitness as a way to carefully cement herself in good technique, even on days when the “first-year fog” was feeling extra heavy. The Bellum coaches LOVED snuggling Ben whenever they could so she could get her workouts in, but even on days when he only wanted his momma, the tag-team effort of Melissa and Laura working together to care for Ben and get their workouts in was always amazing to witness. Their love and commitment to each other, and to their health and wellness has been admirable during the young baby years.
Laura and Melissa have been a part of the Bellum fam for many years now. They started coming to Bellum because of the programming, the careful attention to detail, technique, and safety by the coaching staff, and of course, the benefits of putting in hard work – improved endurance, weight loss, and strength gains! But a resounding and common theme has been evident in every one of our Warrior Wednesday features – what makes Bellum so special is not the workouts, the equipment or the building. It is the community, the people inside the building, the feeling of home and family and the support you receive by those who are walking on a common path who make Bellum such a truly special place. Every one of our gym members and visitors have been welcomed with open arms, and will continue to be as long as our doors are open.
Laura, watching you grow – especially as a mom – has been a joy and privilege through the years. Thank you for allowing Bellum to be a part of your family; for shooting your gender reveal video, in true Bell fashion, with a balloon and a rope climb! For forming friendships, offering support, always helping your classmates, and of course, for sharing Ben with us coaches as you get your workouts in! We are so happy to have been a part of your life for so many years. Here’s to many more!
What type of workouts did you perform before coming to Bellum?: I used to run and walk before starting at Bellum.
Why were you looking for a new style of workouts?: I wasn’t. When I met my wife, she was into CrossFit and became ridiculously healthy and fit. I wanted to support her in any way I could which meant going to the gym with her!
What is your favorite CrossFit movement or workout?: My absolutely favorite movement would have to be the split jerk!
What is your biggest accomplishment since starting at Bellum? (in and/or out of the gym) Easy, my son Benjamin! He’s the greatest accomplishment I’ll ever have.
You and your family have been members at Bellum for several years. In that time, you’ve worked out through pregnancy and post-partum, and now your adorable Ben is 1.5 years old! As a strong Bellum Mama, what’s been one of the most rewarding things about your experience working out post-partum, and what has been one of the biggest adjustments?: My most rewarding experience is learning my body has limitations. I consistently listened to how my body felt. I never pushed myself past what my body said no to, before, during, and after pregnancy. It’s amazing how in-tune you can be with your mind and body.
My biggest adjustment recently is knowing that I can only get to the gym 1 to 2 days a week, as I work full time overnights, and have a wild little boy to take care of.
What made you choose Bellum and CrossFit, as opposed to other styles of workouts?: Bellum was a great environment as a beginner in the gym, so of course I stuck with the group that welcomed me with open arms!
What is your favorite out-of-the-gym activity?: Spending all of my down time with my wife and son, I wouldn’t want it any other way!
What’s your “Why”? I love the Lords nuggies, so I have to work out.