Thursday, December 31, 2015

Live Life Make Waves: A Reflection of A Mermaid with Happy Feet

"Live life make waves!" have been empowering words for me since I joined The Mermaid Club.
I met Helena, The Mermaid Club's founder in the year (2012) I was preparing for my first ever full marathon. It was a few months before Berlin marathon, and we both were running the event for the first time.

Helena aka @Running_Mermaid
Photo courtesy of Helena
Moi aka @HappyFeetNL

Photo courtesy of Helena

Sharing our thoughts on Twitter were the first connection we had.
I like following strong women, who works hard to reach their goals because it reinforces my own goal of being stronger individual.

Helena at the finish line of  Ironman in Florida!!!
Photo courtesy of Helena

A year after Berlin, The Mermaid Club was brought to life by Helena, and I knew I simply need to be a part of the community. Supporting other women in their goals is as rewarding if not more rewarding as being supported in one's own goals.

In Summer 2014, these awesome mermaids and I won a Nikeplus/Nike Training Club challenge!!!
Clockwise from top left : Emily @esandefer@happyfeetnl, Mel @ijoeltje, Carlijn @carlijn.ottens & RenĂ©e @runlaugheatpie

Photo courtesy of Carlijn
(November, 2014)

These beautiful fit friends, all crazy over running are my inspiration.

I met them all after we all won the Nike challenge.

More mermaids who inspire!

Photo courtesy of Demi
(December 2014)
from left to right @deemitje @marleennnx @ntasjaa

Every year I set myself goals to work on. A few months before I joined The Mermaid Club, I was injured (Morton's Neuroma). So in 2013, it was a great opportunity and just the perfect time to be a part of a vibrant community of goal oriented ladies to keep me focused and motivated in my pursuit to be back on track.

After  good 10K race at the Amsterdam Olympic Stadium
In 2014, wearing The Mermaid Club gear gave me a boost - I struggled to keep motivated because my recovery prevented me from running my favorite distance : full marathon.

Seeing other mermaids pursue their goals kept me inspired and I kept plodding on to do the humble miles I could.

It's been 2 years since I became a mermaid (in 2014 I even became one amongst many awesome ambassadors!), and I am very thankful that I am a part of The Mermaid Club. I've met amazing women - most virtually but this does not take away the impact they have on my life!  

Photo courtesy of The Mermaid Club

The community has helped me regain my confidence and aim for more, than I think I am capable of.
When I began using the social media (2012 as @happyfeetnl), it was first and foremost meant to aid me in actively dealing with my bipolar disorder.  
I wanted to learn how to live a life of quality in spite of dealing with mental health issues. Sport - specifically running and fitness workouts are my vehicles. The different social media channels I have serves as a platform, where I could spread my message and connect with others who share the same the same passion: empowering others while working on self-empowerment.
There are many inspiring, strong, selfless women out there and sometimes it only takes one honest story of another woman to ignite the power within them. I hope to be able to ignite the empowering fire in others, as many other women have done so for me repeatedly.

Before my fourth (Babette's 1st!) Bruggenloop Rotterdam together with fellow mermaid and very good friend (photo courtesy of B aka BabetteSocial).

"Live life make waves!" and "The Mermaid Club", when hash tagged connects so many women around the world.
Alone one can reach one's goals, absolutely. Working and reaching your goals with others, who goes through the same struggles and overcome them with positive attitude makes reaching one's goal more meaningful.

Before a 12 km training run with the beautiful, amazing and inspiring Meike aka @fithealthybrunette - new friend, and new mermaid!

Quality soul sister time and mental prep for our first race in 2016 -
Egmond Halve Marathon

This coming 2016, my goal is to run 13 half-marathons. It is not about the speed or distance or proving my strength to others, or to myself. This goal is all about reaffirming my commitment to consistently work on a healthier lifestyle.
I can't wait to start and I know that with the help of The Mermaid Club this will be not only be a fun adventure but a great learning experience as well.
"Live life make waves!" Once you live by these words, there is no other way to live.

(all photos below courtesy of Meike aka @fithealthybrunette )