...I am trying to get in shape.  The above photograph was taken the fall of my senior year of college.  And from other pictures that I will not share with you, there was a huge difference between the fall and the spring.  Note the flat stomach.  That is surprisingly absent in those other, horrible photographs. So it's official folks. I've been workin' it every day for almost a month and I've lost 9lbs (and apparently that last 1 lb before 10 is super stubborn).  Now I do not consider myself a big lady, or even plump but there are several reasons why I have decided it's time to tone up.  So of course, since this is a blog, I'm going to share them with you.

1. I have always been an athlete.  Yes, that is a picture of me holding an AK47...I've always enjoyed a little target practice.  It's a good stress reliever.  But back to my reason.  I've always been an athlete.  In middle school I prided myself on being able to keep up with the boys in gym class.  Remember the Presidential Fitness Test?  My goal was never to just get the presidential level, it was to get the presidential level in the boys section.  Can you tell I have brothers?  In high school I was a pole vaulter.  For a long time being athletic has been an identity for me, and I miss that.

2. I feel good.  Over the past couple years I have dealt with a slew of health issues.  And now that I have taken care of the majority of them, I'm ready to push on.  I'm not tired, or drugged out, so I want to take advantage of this time and make the most of it.

3. I have bad habits.  For a very long time, even through college, I have been that girl who could eat an entire box of doughnuts, wait an hour and then be ready to eat a large pizza by myself.  Post college...not so much.  But I have developed those bad eating habits.  And I want to change those now before it's too late.  More veggies and more fruit please!  This being said, I think a healthy BALANCED diet is important.  I'm not the kinda girl that says no to cake.  If you invite me to your birthday, I'm going to have cake...now I just might not have the whole cake.

4. Wedding Season.  As a photographer, wedding season is creeping up and wedding season is a busy season.  If you have ever shot a wedding, you know that it is very physical.  As the photographer you are constantly moving, running from place to place, going from kneeling to standing and back again...all with a lot of extra weight on your body.  Those eight hour wedding can exhaust you.  This year I want to be in the best shape I can be so I can deliver the best pictures that I can.

5. Bathing suit season.  I love wearing bikinis.  Always have, always will.  But for now I would like to still comfortable wearing a bikini, so I'm gonna be honest with ya, that's definitely a motivation.

6. Confidence.  When your health is good, then you can tackle everything else.  I have a feeling 2011 is going to be a year of lots of change for me, and I want to feel good about that.  I also want the confidence to do the things I love.  I love hiking, canoeing, camping, biking, and just generally being outdoors.  The past couple of years I have been hesitant about doing some of those things because my health has not been what it should be.

7. Babies.  Now hold the phone before everybody gets their panties in a wad.  I am not pregnant and do not have plans to be pregnant any time soon.  BUT  I would like to enjoy an awesome bod before it changes again in a big way, and I want it to be ready for that change whenever that time does come.  As a woman who wants kids eventually, I feel like it's part of my job to make sure I'm healthy.

8. Jillian Michael's kicks my butt and I like it.  I've been doing some of the Jillian Michael's work out videos, and they are high paced and great.  So reason #8 is that I like to suffer.  For realz.  No, but I do love the feeling of a good work out, and I love that I'm seeing results.  That's what keeps me going.

9. Being Sexy.  Being sexy has many aspects, and I am not an advocate for stick thin women.  I love my curves, and I have no desire to look like I did when I was 13 (crooked bangs, glasses, and legs like a baby colt...no thanks).  The trick is finding whatever helps you feel good about yourself and stick with that.  As the famous line in Working Girl goes, "I have a head for business and a bod for sin, is there anything wrong with that?"  I may not have head for business...or really even a bod for sin...but I've got an eye for photography and a bod that can keep up with me...so that's a start.

10.  Why not?  At the end of the day, why not do what's best for me?