When I first entered the health and fitness industry, I had no idea that it would become my life’s purpose and my greatest passion. I remember the day like it was yesterday…
I had just dropped off my “friend” at the airport. He lived in Niagara Falls and he had just invited me to go visit him. I really liked this boy… so when I asked me mom the day before if I could go, she said sure, but you need to pay your way there. In the months leading up to this poignant moment in my life, my mom and I had talked about my college path, kinesiology. I was planning on becoming the next Chargers Athletic Trainer. Seriously, I wanted to work with athletes. Yes, all 5’1” of me. My mom had suggested I get a job at 24 hour fitness to gain some experience and get my feet wet so to speak in the industry.
Like any 19-year-old girl taking advice from her mom, I nodded my head and said ‘ok’, but then NEVER took action. That was until the invite. Immediately following the sad goodbye to my Italian heart-throb, I took a detour home and walked into the closest 24 hour fitness and ask to speak with the manager. No appointment. No experience. No plan.
After waiting for what felt like forever, I had the opportunity to meet with the fitness manager. I can’t remember the actual conversation but I remember it going something along the lines of… “I want to be a trainer, I have no experience working with weights, but I’ve been a gymnast, soccer player, diver, dancer, and cheerleader. So I know how to work hard and I’m a fast learner.”
I walked out of the gym probably 30 minutes later, with a job as a personal trainer. BAM! I was heading to New York.
And that’s’ where my life was forever changed. In PT training, I learned a lot. One of the interesting facts I learned about was the ratio of athletes vs non-athletes. You know the ones that sit on the couch and watch the talented athletes compete at a high level. The ones I wanted to help become even better athletes. I found this cool graphic and article that talks about the odds of becoming a professional athlete. I didn’t feel so bad at my chances for making the Olympic Gymnastics Team after seeing these numbers.
That moment in training 15 years ago, I made the decision that I could help more non-athletes find joy in getting in shape. They were the people who needed MY help. I know I had found my passion for helping people who just wanted to be healthy, live a long life and enjoy watching the football player make great plays.
So I made personal training my career. Or so I thought it was going to be my career. You see as I got older and developed my own niche and my own philosophy on what personal training should be about, I realized that getting to your desired weight loss goal was only successful if I taught you how to stay there.
I always told my clients, yes I can get you to lose 20 lbs in a month, but that won’t help you keep it off. I stopped giving meal plans, and telling clients what they “should” do and I started asking “what can you do?”
What is truly REALISTIC for you to maintain for the REST OF YOUR LIFE?
My thought process was… if you don’t believe you can do it forever, then why would you do it to get there. To me it has never made sense to kill yourself with restrictive diets and intense workout regiments for a short timeframe. To me, short-term plans equals short-term results.
If you brought me the latest and greatest fad diet and you only had to do it for XX amount of days… I would ask you, then what? What do you do when you stop? Where do you go from there?
You see, anyone can lose the weight, the real secret to success is being able to keep it off. And that secret can be found in the things you do on a daily basis.
You’re probably asking yourself, ok Ashley, but why is important to you that I get healthy… and honestly the answer is because YOU DESERVE TO BE HEALTHY. Your family deserves you to be healthy, Your kids (if you got them) deserve you to be healthy.
When you are healthy, you FEEL good. And when you FEEL good, you DO good. And when you DO good, you are usually winning at life IN ALL AREAS OF YOUR LIFE. Relationships, Spiritual, Financial, Physical, Emotional, and even in your Career.
You feeling good literally IMPACTS every area of your life. And why wouldn’t you want that… or think you deserve that feeling of awesomeness.
It’s what I live for. Watching other people win… because when they win, I win. So yes it may be a little selfish too, but who doesn’t like a win-win situation?!?!
If you’re still reading this, I want you to be as bold as I was walking into that 24 hour fitness, not having EVER lifted a single weight and reach out to me. And simply say, I DESERVE to be HEALTHY!