Kirsten's Corner: The One About My Daddy - Indianapolis Fitness And Sports Training
Kirsten's Corner

Kirsten’s Corner: The One About My Daddy

written by Mike Robertson

Once upon a time there was a recovering chunky-butt named Kirsten who decided she wanted to work in a gym-o-awesomeness and surround herself with healthy, fit-minded peeps. As part of her indoctrination into the land of IFAST-dom, she was awarded an assessment that verified her strengths and weaknesses as a dormant athlete. She quickly proved herself to have the dexterity of a Weeble-Wobble. They sent their noble and optimistic warrior, Sir Jae, to feverishly train Kirsten in the art of Anti-Humpty-Dump-tery. This is her story…

WEEK 36:

I know it’s been a while since I tapped some blog keys when I have to pull out a calendar to help me do the math. It’s hard for me to believe it’s been 3 dozen weeks since I joined the IFAST family. What a life-changing blessing and joy.

Even more cray-cray? I’ve been a blossoming athlete for 36 weeks! For realz! It wasn’t THAT long ago that my doctor asked me to explain my “fitness routine” to her and I begrudgingly offered, “Well…hmmm.  Sometimes I put my underwear on while standing up.  Does that count?”

holidays in heavenLast month, a gal-pal of mine introduced me to the world of “virtual 5ks.”  If you’re unfamiliar, here’s the scoop: someone designs a snazzy medal and then sells them with enough on top to raise funds for their favorite charity.  Interested walkers and runners sign up online and pay their fees (typically $20-$25), get their medals and bibs in the mail, and then hit the pavement/treadmill as it bests fit their schedule. Because there aren’t any Frankenstein-ian mobs taking over a city street somewhere, they’ve been dubbed “virtual races.”

Last Friday, I walked and ran my very first virtual race. It was the perfect day for me to participate in the “Holidays in Heaven” themed-race because it was also the 33rd anniversary since my father died. I turned on the Pandora Christmas station and, alternating walking and running with every tune, I rocked it out to the likes of Frosty and Rudolph. Thems my holiday jams, yo.

kirsten and daddy
Cruising for Some Snoozing, Circa 1975

I passed the time replaying the limited memories I have of the greatest man I’ve ever known. I thought about his never-ending patience, his contagious belly laugh, his limitless creativity, and his thoughtful, loving way of looking at the world and all of it’s diverse and beautiful people. But I also thought about the day when my twin brother and I were with him and he had a massive heart-attack that ultimately took his life. Even though we were only 9, I spent years feeling responsible for not being able to save him. And layered thick upon the guilt of his death, were piles of anger. Anger about being abandoned.  Anger about his death starting a domino effect of tragedies in my world. Anger about him being unhealthy and a compulsive eater. I remember asking my 4th grade teacher why eating fried chicken livers had been more important than staying alive and staying with me.

And yet, here I am living in my full-circle world. Battling my own emotionally-eating issues, determined to never again feel trapped in a 300 pound body.  And more importantly, fiercely determined to make sure my daughter never has to know what it’s like to grow up without a parent. A commitment so strong, that I’ve rearranged my whole world to make it so.

I see a bunch of virtual 5Ks in my future. It’s good for the body and mind. And 2014 is going to be a great year for both.

Living happily ever after,


  • Weigh no more than twice a week and break my habit as a scale-hootchie. GRADE: D
  • Sleep a minimum of 6 hours a night. GRADE: D


  • Dial in on the mindless eating.  If it doesn’t require a plate or silverware, chances are I’m better off without it!
  • Finished the ever-lasting remodel and enjoy the comforts of home


  • On Christmas Day, I single-handedly ate every calorie in the Midwest; I felt like crap about it physically and emotionally. Shock of all shocks, turns out that eating more crap to try to drown out the initial layer of crap? Not too effective. Whodathunkit? So I switched game plans and  decided to just forgive myself and move forward. So far, so good.
  • Hubby got a new job where he actually feels appreciated and excited to go to work. I’m so very blessed to already know that feeling so well.

Kirsten’s Corner is a weekly blog post written by Kirsten Shaw to document her health-fit journey. It is intended to offer humor and inspiration and should not be misconstrued as medical advice or the opinions of IFAST.

Mike Robertson

  1. Yay for virtual races!! Glad I could introduce you to my latest obsession and have you join in the fun with me. Even more than that, I love that your first race was in memory of your dad. He sounds like he was an awesome guy.

    • Hi Mel –

      Thank you for comment and support. You have rocked my world by introducing me to virtual races. I’m forever grateful, even if my bank account thinks I need an intervention. 😉 Smooches and JugHugs, Kirsten

  2. I am jealous of the virtual race. I didn’t know. I feel like as your sister, you need to share all of your new knowledge with me. One juicy tidbit that you shared is such an amazing revelation that I think you should write something about it, cause I for shizzle don’t write with your finesse! On the subject of “emotional eating”. I always thought this meant you are happy, so you eat. You are sad, so you eat. I am not an emotional eater. I eat it because it is so yummy!! You explain to me, this IS emotional eating. You could’ve pushed me off a chair. It is? Well why would you eat it if it isn’t yummy? Is all eating emotional? Love you sooooo much!!!!

    • You are so silly! I officially apologize for not updating you immediately in every piece of new info to my brain and world.

      As for the whole emotional eating, I think eating a few bites of pie would not fall under the category of emotional eating. Considering a whole angel food cake as a single-serving size and thereby wearing it as a bracelet? More likely. One light bulb moment I had was when someone told me, “If you are eating for reasons besides hunger, your body will not be able to tell you when it’s full.” Doh – smacked me right between the eyes!

      Love you! – Kirsten

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