Hi mamas!  My name is Maddi Thome, and I am over the moon excited to become a part of this quickly growing SLAM family as the new boss of Stroller Strong Moms Cape Atlantic!  We recently moved to south Jersey when our family left the Army life behind and joined the Coast Guard community.

In our time in the Army, we moved 5 times in 6 years which kept me searching for community with every move.  In our final move to Savannah in 2016 I had two young daughters ages 2 and 6 months and was not only searching for community but more specifically a community I felt welcomed in no matter if I had it together that morning or just needed a hug because that was the “roller coaster” phase of life I was in! I found this when I bravely walked up to a group of moms working out at the park.  Trust me mamas, I know it is not easy to step out of our comfort zone and say hi to a group of moms you have never met, but they welcomed me with open arms even though I felt like I might die after the first class. This was no walking group like I thought!  From that moment on, I was hooked and caught the SLAM bug! My daughters are now 6.5 and 5 still love when they get to go “workout” with mama. This is one of my favorite parts of SLAM! We are not the only ones who fall in love with a healthy lifestyle our kids do too!

Growing up I was a basketball player, and I missed those days of testing my athletic ability and being part of a team.  SLAM Savannah became my team and pushed me to do things I never thought I could after having babies.  Before SLAM my frame of mind was that after having kids I would lose my athletic abilities.  SLAM taught me how to safely set new goals and crush them.  I never considered myself a runner but I ran several half marathons after meeting these inspiring women.  Running through the finish line of my first half marathon and being greeted with sweaty hugs meant the world to me because my husband was deployed at the time.  Mamas supported me through the whole journey of training from start to finish! They watched my kids while I was doing long runs, joined in for stroller miles, and met me at the finish line! No matter what goals you have this is where you will find the best cheerleaders in the world!

In our time in the Army, I needed a lot of support when my husband was away.  If I missed a few classes I knew I would be getting a text from a SLAM sister asking me if I needed anything or to drop me a word of encouragement.  The workouts are killer but the community is irreplaceable! No matter what you are going through there is someone in SLAM nation that has been there and is ready to encourage through that phase.

After having my 3rd child in 2018, I became an instructor. The recovery from my 3rd pregnancy was better than the previous two because of our amazing stroller strong instructors and love from the Stroller Strong Mom community.  They lead me through safe but effective workouts while pregnant and after! I also had support that I never had after my daughters were born.  When I would show up to class with my newborn son a mom would greet me with a smile! Some days that was all I needed to turn my morning around.  They were ready to support my ups and downs of motherhood and encourage me through it all.  Because of this amazing experience, I knew I wanted to bring SLAM with me wherever life took us.

When we decided it was time for our Army journey to end the pandemic hit! This meant SLAM ending before I was ready! Classes had to go virtual and those sweaty goodbye hugs seemed to be ripped away from me and I was devastated.  This was when I knew that SLAM was a part of me forever, and I was not ready to give it up! The day before we left Savanah my SLAMily came out in cars to say their goodbyes safely! This is what SLAM is all about, being there for mamas from the minute they enter our community as an overwhelmed mom of two to the minute it is their time to say goodbye as an instructor and more confident mom of 3.  Once you join the SLAM family you are always a part of it!

I can’t wait to grow this community more and meet more mamas here in South Jersey. Who is ready to SLAM with me on the South Jersey Shore?   Follow our journey on Facebook and Instagram!