February Challenge: Love ThighSelf #LoveThighself

In my 42 years, I have been all shapes and sizes.  During my childhood years, I was your average-sized kid.

In the 80s, I was a chunky teen with hair as big and fluffy as my rear. In high school, I wore sizes between 12-16.  Whenever I stood next to my very thin sister, I looked even larger as I was frequently reminded by my mother.

Run DMT - 1989

In college, when most students find the dreaded Freshmen Fifteen weight gain, I became more active and lost a ton of weight. My dress size dropped to an unhealthy size zero.

I met my husband in the fall of the year I graduated college. I was so slim, I wore my old Girl Scout Brownie jumper as a top that Halloween.

Guavaween 1995

When I became pregnant with my first baby, I gained nearly 90 pounds when my weight jumped from 105 pounds to 194 pounds. Those dormant fat cells were just waiting to me to start binge eating again.

Run DMT 194 pounds

After the birth of my first baby, I wore a size 16 again and the scale read 175 pounds. Even while breastfeeding, I struggled for two years to reach a reasonable and healthy size 6.

Run DMT 175 pounds

Then a few years later, I became pregnant with baby number two and I tried to be more sensible about my weight gain.  I only gained 40 pounds. After delivering baby number 2, I wore a size 12 and took me two years to lose the weight.

Run DMT 2005


Run DMT - Dec 2006

When baby number two was about a year old, I discovered running and how it could help me maintain a reasonable weight while eating sensible portions.  The cardio boosted my metabolism and my energy levels. Running gave the courage and strength to run multiple marathons.

Run DMT - Gasparilla 2008


Four years later, I became pregnant with baby number three. Again, I only gained 40 pounds but this time, I was a  mother runner. I ran into my seventh month until it was too painful and difficult to breath.

Run DMT 2010  - Baby 3

About three months after baby number three, I started running again and tried to shed the baby weight. The running helped with the weight loss and I was about a size 6 once again before his first birthday and my 40th birthday.

Run DMT at 40 - 2011

Throughout all my ups and downs with my weight loss, I have always loved my body.  Whereas other may find my mommy muffin top hideous, I love my love handles. Even though my tummy isn’t as tight as it was before baby number three, it’s nothing a pair of Spanx can’t fix.  But then, why should I need to fix it, mask it or hide it?

Run DMT 2010 -beach

My body is the one I’ve been given. The one I earned with multiple pregnancies and as a mother runner.  In another person’s eyes, my body may not be perfect, but it fits me perfectly. As a mom to two daughters, it’s important for me to model positive affirmations of my self-worth in order for my girls to believe and see the beauty in themselves.

Run DMT 2013 - beach

Over the years, I have learned to truly Love ThighSelf and during the month of February, I encourage you take steps toward acceptance and embracing the body you face in the mirror.

Ignore the flaws, the wrinkles, the cellulite, the lose skin and the jiggly parts.  Uncover how those imperfections make you a perfectly strong woman.  See your reflection in the mirror as your loved ones see you.

For the next 28 days (like any good rehab program), cleanse your mind of all the bad thoughts about your body and join the beautiful Erin of The Mom Buzz and me (Run DMT) for our “Love ThighSelf” love fest, #LoveThighself.


Here’s how the how it works:

The Love Thighself Love Fest Part 1

Every day try to share something POSITIVE about yourself. Try to come up with something different every day – 28 compliments! Then, share these positive thoughts however you are comfortable.

Tweet: “I love myself  because … @theMomBuzz @DeniseRMT #LoveThighself on your Twitter and tag @theMomBuzz and @RunDMT with #LoveThighself

On Instagram, tag @speak2erin and @run_dmt with the #LoveThighself)

On Facebook, either on your page or on The Mom Buzz Fan Page or the Run DMT Fan Page, tag @theMomBuzz and @RunDMT with #LoveThighself. Erin even created a fun Facebook group for you to share LoveThighself comments and photos.

On Tumblr, tag @theMomBuzz with #LoveThighself.

Why not make a Pinterest Board about loving yourself?! Pin an accomplishment, a picture, words of motivation or affirmation or whatever! Be sure to use #LoveThighself.

Even more simple, you can leave a comment below telling how you love yourself for the day.

The LoveThighself Lovefest Part 2

Support each other. We are inviting everyone to leave their linkies below of whatever/however you shared your #LOVETHIGHSELF. Feel free to visit each other and leave likes, hearts, and positive comments!


CONTEST: Because we are celebrating for the month of February and we are inviting everyone to be their own Valentine.  Erin has organized a fun little #LoveThighself giveaway.

For every daily #LoveThighself task you complete, you will earn an entry to win a $50 Hallmark gift card. The winner will be chosen randomly from either the comments or the linkies. If you visit someone to give them kind words or likes, please leave a little comment below so everyone knows.



  1. Her Royal Thighness says:

    I LOVE this idea. I have really struggled in the self love department over my 51 years. I don’t understand why I judge myself so harshly and feel so ugly, when I have never judged other people that way. The other day, I tried to think of one person who I thought was ugly, and I couldn’t come up with anyone. I can find beauty in everyone I see. But I have never been able to find it in myself. This will be an interesting challenge for me, but I’m going to do this. Can you tell me what this “submit your link is above?”

    • Denise says:

      Hey YRT! You are such a rock star in my mind and such a beautiful, good person. I admire you at so many levels. I hope you take on this challenge and see yourself as others see you.

      The “submit your link” option is if you write a post about the Love Thighself challenge you can add it there. It’s a blog hop option so we can visit each others blog and leave comments for additional support.

  2. erin @ themombuzz says:

    I love all of the pictures you shared. I have to find some old ones of me, but I think they are stored away. Big pregger belly and 99-pound college me. And here I am – fit and healthy and it still isn’t enough… for me!

    I also vow to run in a sports bra and compression shorts this month without worrying about my belly. 🙂 I bought two VS Sports bras for the occasion. I hope they come soon!

    Can’t wait to help more people learn to love themselves!

    Erin T.

  3. Carol says:

    Hi Denise! I’ve followed your blog for awhile, and am local to the Tampa area like you. My husband & I both graduated from Chamberlain HS in ’88 – did you go there as well, near that year? Your graduation pic in this post looks awfully familiar… Anyway, keep the up the great work! You are an inspiration! (Oh, and I’m running the Gasparilla half, too!) 🙂

    • Denise says:

      Hi! *waving frantically* Thank you for reading my blog and following me and for calling me an inspiration. You made my day! 🙂 I’ll be at Gasprailla this year too. I’m running the Lime Cactus Challenge (15K + 8K). So, I’ll be there on Sunday. Let’s try and meetup!

      I attended Ridgewood High School , but graduated from New Port Richey Christian School in 1989.

  4. Katie says:

    Very inspiring Denise! I’m a complete yo-yoer and at a high right now from my first sons pregnancy. I’m trying to loose this time with a lifestyle change, which includes becoming a runner. But unlike you I always hate/pick at my body no matter what size I am. Good for you for not being that person. I need to give that a try this month.

    • Denise says:

      You are an amazing mom and a wonderful person! Please come join our challenge to shake those bad thoughts about yourself as you shed the weight. Congratulations on making a lifestyle and becoming a runner! Now, you need to make a mental change about yourself and the how beautiful you are!

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