To this day my mother is still in shock that I am a Fitness Trainer. All throughout my adolescent and teenage years I would beg her to take me to the doctor’s office, fake a problem and then request notes to “excuse me” from participating in gym class. I was overweight, unathletic and terrified, but as long as the doctor kept writing down “tendonitis” I was safe. I had been overweight since a devastating loss in my childhood led me to seek comfort in food, as many of us do. Doritos & Reese’s were my escape.
Just like any other addiction, you won’t truly seek change until you are ready and that day came for me in the Fall of 1997. I was a senior in college, smoking, 230-some pounds and could hardly make it up a flight of stairs. I woke up one morning, tossed the cigarettes and joined a small gym nearby. My goal on Day 1 was to walk for 30 minutes on a treadmill, which I did …albeit verrrrry slowly! I went nearly every day and one morning I decided to try to run for 30 seconds. The next time it was 1 minute, then 2 minutes, 10 minutes and then one day the WHOLE 30 minutes! To this day I don’t love running, but it was my first, my savior, and I still cherish the days when I can hit the treadmill and have helped many clients prepare for their first 5K race… and I have completed 3 Half Marathons to date!
All the while I was on this treadmill back in college I would watch the aerobics ladies doing their old-school-style floor aerobics and step classes. One day the instructor, who had obviously seen me watching, pulled me out of my comfort zone and told me to give it a try. I was hooked! This unathletic, highly uncoordinated girl found something she could do and could do well. I became a die-hard class attendee and kept it up when I moved back to my hometown after graduating college in June of 1998. That next year I was asked to become an instructor myself and entered into the magical world of step, cardio kickboxing, cycling and toning!! Since moving to Florida in 2001 I’ve added Yoga to the mix as well.
I still battle my weight issues every day (who doesn’t) but I’ve accepted that diets are not the way to go and there really is no such thing as reaching a “goal weight”. You reach it for a day and then the work starts right up again the next day! It never ends. I simply try my best every day to make smart decisions with food (REAL food and everything in moderation) and do consistent exercise. Period.
I have met the most amazing people along this journey and am inspired everyday!! Weight loss is great, but it’s also the little things… the first time they do “big girl push-ups” or when someone wears their first tank top cause they no longer worry about showing their arms. Magical changes!!! I will help anyone and everyone as long as they are ready to work hard, cause that is absolutely what it takes. Being fit is not always easy but it IS always worth it!