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Amanda Beard’s Blog: The Ups and Downs

02/28/2014 at 04:00 PM ET

Amanda Beard Blog My Family – Courtesy Amanda Beard

Thanks for welcoming our newest celebrity blogger, Amanda Beard!

The seven-time Olympic medalist first appeared on the sports scene at the 1996 Atlanta Games, winning her first gold in the medley relay and two silvers for the 100 and 200-meter breaststrokes — all at the age of 14.

Since then, the competitive swimmer scored a bronze medal at the 2000 Sydney Olympics, and her first individual gold medal along with two silvers at the 2004 Athens games.

Beard, 32, who is an Aqua Sphere-sponsored athlete, recently penned her memoir, In the Water They Can’t See You Cry.

She and her husband Sacha Brown married in May 2009 and are the parents of son Blaise Ray, 4, and daughter Doone Isla, 8 months.

Beard can be found online on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter @AmandaRayBeard.

Hi PEOPLE & friends!

Call me dramatic, but when you move a family 1,500 miles north, three extra days in a month make a huge difference. February has absolutely flown by!

It feels like it was just last weekend that I was driving to Seattle, diving into a new team and training regimen, and exploring a new state with my family. Time flies when you’re having fun — or being pulled in a hundred directions — right?

Amanda Beard Blog Blaise and friends – Courtesy Amanda Beard

Between getting our kids into new routines to help them settle in, and making time for ourselves and our family, February has, without a doubt, been a month of highs and lows, sleep deprivation and a lot of half-eaten meals for mom.

When life gets crazy, I sometimes find myself making mountains out of molehills — getting so caught up in the minutiae of life that I forget how small some problems really are.

Remember when I said that I was going to learn something new every day? Today, I’m going to re-learn one of the most important lessons in life: to focus on the amazing little things that bring me joy every day so that I stop turning molehills into mountains. A good attitude goes a long way, and there are plenty of real mountains in life; there’s no reason to create more!

Amanda Beard Blog Life gets crazy! – Courtesy Amanda Beard

To hold myself publicly accountable, I’d like to share a positive upswing for some parenting-induced molehills I’ve encountered this month:

Moving is stressful with kids, and Washington is rainy.
Upside: We are beyond happy with our move. Sacha and I both grew up close to the beach in California, and it’s just wonderful to be on the water again.

Blaise loves exploring a new place. We’ve done a ton of hiking, exploring the beach and all of its creatures, and relaxing at our family’s lake house. We’re not letting the colder weather keep us indoors — especially when we get a little snow and get to go sledding in my mom’s yard!

Amanda Beard Blog My daughter and my mom – Courtesy Amanda Beard

I miss staring at blue skies while I train indoors.
Upside: The weather never keeps me from working out anymore; no excuses! Ultimately, I love the change and the new environment. Mixing it up keeps training fresh and fun! Plus, when it comes to training, it’s really hard not to over analyze everything I do in the pool.

At some point I need to just allow myself to have fun and enjoy being active and healthy. I’m working on getting in shape enough to swim in a meet. Hopefully soon!

Being a mom-of-two means two sets of activities and twice the amount of things to do.
Upside: With both Blaise and Doone in swimming, and Blaise having school, other activities, and a social calendar, I have to juggle and balance more than ever and I’m learning a lot. But what can I say? I’m not getting rid of either of these cuties!

Amanda Beard Blog Kisses – Courtesy Amanda Beard

I have not achieved my weight loss goal yet.
Upside: Being healthy isn’t about a number on a scale; it’s how you feel, if you’re smiling, and how you’re fostering relationships with the amazing people in your life.

You would think that being a professional swimmer I would put losing weight on the top of my list. Obviously, I would love to say the weight just flew off of me, but the reality is that my family comes first and silly things like losing 10 pounds don’t seem as important at the end of the day. I’m not going to stress over what I think the “ideal body” is; it doesn’t exist. Everyone is meant to be different and that’s what makes us so beautiful!

Plus, I’ve created two amazing kiddos and if that means I carry some extra weight because of it, then oh well. I wouldn’t change anything. My priority is to set a good and healthy example for my kids and others, and eventually, if I keep working out and eating healthy, I will lose all the baby weight.

I have a lot on my plate.
Upside: I’m fortunate to not only train as an Aqua Sphere athlete, but also feel blessed that they continually source me for their projects. Whether it’s modeling the 2014 swimwear collection for their lookbook, or working in R&D on a set of tools geared to help athletes cross-train in the pool (launching next month — stay tuned!), staying engaged and interested in my work is paramount to my happiness.

Amanda Beard Blog How cute are these two? – Courtesy Amanda Beard

Wow! I truly feel better already. It’s so important to reflect in life to make sure we’re on the right track, so thanks, PEOPLE.com and friends, for supporting me here and letting me do that!

As a parent, it’s so easy to get wrapped up in the details and start making mountains out of molehills.

What have you faced lately, and how did you overcome it?

Cheers,

– Amanda Beard

More from Amanda’s PEOPLE.com blog series:

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Showing 3 comments

Amy on

First, welcome to Washington! Just hang in till Spring and everything starts to look up! Second, my big challenge as a new mom and business owner has been keeping the house clean! Seems like such a little thing, but I always internalized messes, they brought me down and stressed me out, but now I focus on the fact that letting a little mess go gives me so much more time with my daughter to play and have fun! Cleaning can wait until she goes to bed and I can jam along to some music to motivate me.

Brooke on

That one of the two kids is the most precious thing ever.

Mel on

Health and happiness to you Amanda. Being a mum of small kids though joyful, can also be totally overwhelming at time. Glad that you are honest about that and that you are putting your passion into your family and getting back to the day job of swimming. Baby steps!

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