What better way to kick off the blog than with the story of a truly inspirational Wisconsin mom?  Burklin Nielsen is a single mom who has overcome obstacles and found new physical and emotional strength through fitness.

Shortly after her daughter was born in 2006, Burklin’s husband became abusive.  By the time she found the courage to leave, she was scarred both physically and emotionally. “I had no self esteem.  I had become overweight, depressed, and felt helpless.  But I couldn’t let myself fail after I had just rescued my daughter and myself.”

Burklin’s fitness journey began when she purchased a membership to her local gym, where she started going simply because the hot water heater went out at her house and they didn’t have the money to fix it.  Daycare was free, and she was able to workout every morning and also take a shower before going to work.

Burklin made the decision to go back to school and finish her degree while also working full time.  Unfortunately, this meant a change in daycare for her daughter and eventually they stopped going to the gym altogether.  Burklin ended up gaining back 10 of the 30 pounds she had worked so hard to lose at the gym.

About a year later, Burklin was given P90X by a friend, and she found help sticking with the program from her Beachbody Coach, Barbie Decker.  With new found motivation, she was able to lose over 35 pounds!  Her success with P90X led her to become more active, eat better, and have more energy to play with her now 6 year old daughter.  Burklin also decided to become a Beachbody Coach herself to help motivate others.

Burklin’s current fitness passion is CrossFit.  In December of last year, she attended a birthday event for a friend at CrossFit Farmland in Waunakee, WI.  She got a crash course in proper squat, front squat, and deadlift technique.  She also did her first WOD (Workout of the Day). “I got my butt kicked!  I thought I was going to puke, pass out, or die.”  That Saturday she did deadlifts, ran, and box jumped.  She did front squats, flipped tires, and did kettlebell swings…and that was just the beginning.  “I started that day telling a friend I was never coming back.  By the time I had finished, I WAS IN LOVE! I faced my fears that day and I overcame them.  That’s how I live every day in the box: pushing myself, making myself better, facing my fears, and owning them.”  Now Burklin does CrossFit 3 days per week at KR Fitness Systems in Lodi, WI.

Since joining CrossFit, Burklin has been following the Paleo diet.  Her favorite healthy food is avocado, and her favorite “cheat food” is Paleo brownies.

Burklin’s goal now is to be strong regardless of what she looks like, to be happy with herself, and to teach her daughter healthy habits. “Knowing that I am healthier, fitter, and stronger than the day before…and that my daughter experiences this with me…is what makes me happy and keeps me motivated.”

You can visit Burklin’s coaching website at http://www.bringitwithburk.com/

Learn more about CrossFit at http://www.crossfit.com/