hello my tribe,
It is hard to put into words the woman that Maria Groten is. She works tirelessly as a mother, wife, volunteer, athlete, and entrepreneur…just to name a few of the many hats she wears. Maria and her family have experienced many blessings, and also challenges that most of us will never face. Through it all, you will never find Maria without a smile on her face. Her positivity and generous nature are contagious. Maria has been a wonderful example to me, as I make many choices in my life as a woman and mother. I don’t doubt for a second that Maria will also be an inspiration to you.
If you have any questions for Maria, feel free to ask below in the comments.
Alex: Tell us a little about your family.
Maria: I have been married to my best friend and soulmate, Eric Groten, for the last 17 years. When we met, Eric had two children, Andrew and Grace, and I had two, Ruel and Emma. On Mother’s Day in 2001, we lost Andrew, 10, and Grace, 5, in a small plane crash. Ruel and Emma were 5 and 3 at the time. Our lives would never be the same, but we were blessed to have two more children together: Grayson who was born on the one-year anniversary of the accident and Lily who was born just 19 months later. Today Ruel is 21 and a Junior at Goucher College, where he also plays on the lacrosse team. Emma is 19 and about to graduate from Westlake High School. Grayson is 14 and a Freshman at Westlake, and Lily is 13 and attends Hill Country Middle School. We have been incredibly blessed to have had 6 wonderful children.
Alex: Tell us a bit about your life before becoming a mother.
Maria: Before I became a mom at 25, I was a school teacher in Pflugerville. I taught 1st and 2nd grade.
Alex: What surprised you most about motherhood?
Maria: The love I have for my babies is the most incredible feeling I’ve ever known. I still can’t believe I gave birth to four beautiful, healthy babies, and have gotten to be a mom to two more. It is fascinating to watch them become adults and find their own journeys in life.
Alex: What has been the biggest challenge you have faced with motherhood?
Maria: Letting go! They grow up so fast, and then they leave. Life is a series of hellos and goodbyes, and it is never easy to say good-bye!
Alex: What are your secrets to balancing your personal life, motherhood, and work?
Maria: Finding time for myself keeps me balanced. I love going for a run, spending time with a close friend, shopping, and just being home alone doing the little things like laundry and dishes. I also love to travel and get away from it all, which makes me appreciate my life at home even more.
Alex: Philanthropy is woven into all aspects of your life. What has inspired this?
Maria: It has always been so important for us to give back to organizations that we are passionate about and love. We have been given so much that we feel it is important to share and help others and to be an example to our children.
Alex: What does self-care look like for you?
Maria: Exercise, eating right, and getting 8 hours of sleep a night help me stay at my best.
Alex: What inspired you to start LOVE Cycling Studio?
Maria: My faith and my passion for people, music, exercise, and community. All of them connect in my “Spinistry” at LOVE.
Alex: Tell us a bit of the back story with starting the company.
Maria: I had a very special friend who had the same vision as I did for what LOVE should look like, and we both worked tirelessly to make that dream come true. It all happened very fast, but all of the pieces came together with the right people at the right time and in the right place. I wake up every day feeling so grateful for our shared success.
Alex: What has been a favorite milestone with the studio?
Maria: I have loved watching our instructors grow into rockstars. Some of them had never even been on a bike before, but through hard work and practice, they have become an inspiration to me and everyone around them.
Alex: If you could give new moms one piece of advice, what would it be?
Maria: Treasure every moment you have with your babies. There will be many challenging moments but they are temporary, and you’ll be okay!
Alex: What are some ways you teach your daughters (and sons) about “girl power?”
Maria: I have tried to be a good example to my children – to demonstrate that you can do anything you want as long as you work hard. They’ve seen me cross many finish lines after running marathons and completing 2 Ironman races, but they also saw the time that I put into training. They have witnessed the building of LOVE Cycling Studio and all the time and energy that was put into making it a success. My hope is that each of them find something in life that they love, and find a way to share it with others.