Hi! My name is Riley O’Rourke and I have been S.L.A.M.’n in Fayetteville (www.strollerstrongmoms.com/fayetteville) since February 2017! I am a Mom of two, Connor who is 4 and Hadley who is 10 months, and my husband is active duty Army! Growing up I was always fairly active, I played soccer until my junior year of high school when my interest in the sport I once loved faded away. After that, I went through spurts of going to the gym and taking spin or body pump classes, I dabbled in different home workout programs, but nothing ever really stuck long term!
I am from Bellevue Washington and met my husband there in 2008 while he was stationed at Fort Lewis. We got married in 2011 and found out we were expecting our first baby in 2012, right before our first PCS to Fort Benning Georgia! Luckily, my sister and her family were also stationed at Fort Benning, so even though it was a big move, I had my best friend right down the road. Fast forward about four years, we found out we were expecting baby #2 and a few months later my husband received orders to Fort Bragg with a report date that was just one month away. Moving somewhere where I only knew two people and having my family far away scared me, especially with another baby on the way; I knew I needed to find a support group, some friends for me and for my son.
One evening shortly after our move, while we were still getting settled in a new home and city, I did a Facebook search for “Stroller Strong Moms Fayetteville” and much to my surprise something popped up. I had no idea there was an affiliate here, but I was SO happy! In Columbus I always saw moms rocking their S.L.A.M. tanks and it seemed like such a great community, but working part time I was never able to make it to a class, this was finally my chance to give it a try! I immediately sent Amy a Facebook message asking for more details about class, I couldn’t wait to get started! When I was pregnant with my son I didn’t workout at all and as a result I was physically uncomfortable and gained much more weight than I would have liked to, I knew I needed to try to stay active the second time around. I attended my first class when I was about 18 weeks pregnant and never looked back! All the moms were so welcoming and encouraging, my son had a blast playing with the other kids and I got a great workout! I S.L.A.M.ed up until a few weeks before I had my daughter, I even finished a (very slow) 5k at 36 weeks pregnant! I returned to SSM when my daughter was about 4 weeks old and couldn’t believe how good I felt, which I absolutely attribute to staying active while pregnant. Here I am 10 months later, and I am feeling strong and confident which is such a great feeling.
What I love about SSM is the variety of workouts we get from HIIT, to heavy weight Wednesdays, to Yoga; no two workouts are the same which keeps it fun and exciting, not to mention helps me reach my fitness goals! Dedicating one hour each day to working on myself helps me to be a more patient mom and better wife. I love that I am able to show my kids how important and fun an active lifestyle is. I love when my son wants to join in during the workouts, or proudly shows me his burpees and pushups while playing at home.
I was honestly surprised, but truly honored, when Amy told me she had chosen me as S.L.A.M.er of the month. Each and every mom at class is so inspiring and strong, I was so humbled that she would choose me! Being a part of Stroller Strong Moms has impacted my life so positively both physically and emotionally. As much as I might dread doing burpees, I really look forward to SSM every day and leave every workout with a sense of accomplishment.