It was my senior year in college when I officially began my career in the fitness industry. My basketball coach asked me to help with team conditioning when I opted to sit out my last year. This was an opportunity to lead me on the path to a wonderful career in the health and wellness industry.
Early on I was training at a small health club and also working as a strength and conditioning coach at a local high school. This was the perfect introduction. I understood how the body moved and reacted from an athletic point of view. My typical client at that time was looking for general fitness and looking to improve strength, increase flexibility and reduce the risk of injury. I was surrounded by many great coworkers that offered great advice for program design, how to modify exercises to regress or make it more difficult, and how to develop rapport with clients.
As I gained confidence in myself and my training I was able to integrate what I had learned in school, from my own experience and from playing around. There were many tools added to the repertoire of exercises. TRX, kettle-bells, yoga just to name a few. I began to push clients out of their comfort zones. Adding more weight, making them crawl on the floor, balancing with their eyes closed, kneeling on a stability ball, signing up for their first 5k race. These achievements brought strength, confidence and excitement to my clients. In turn, I was seeing the true benefits of my job.
Once I was asked what fitness means to me. This was my answer: being able to move how I want when I want, without limitation or restrictions due to pain or discomfort.
Our industry is changing every day. We have a beautiful platform to make a difference in the lives of those we work with. One of the greatest parts of my job is that no two days are ever the same. Whether it is working with the 40 year old marathon runner or the 80 year old wanting to improve strength and balance, all clients deserve the opportunity to achieve their goals in a safe and enjoyable environment. This is why I hold myself accountable to helping them achieve their goals.
Over the last few months I have seen an increase in "special population" type of clients coming in for help. These include MS, obesity, arthritis, cancer patients and the list goes on. It is that reason I am bridging the gap, between the medical world and the fitness world. By actively seeking out workshops and specific trainings this will help to improve the everyday lifestyle for many of my clients. In fact, next week I am headed to Berkeley, CA to learn more about the way we train by focusing on and improving the connection between the body and the brain.
I see this as the most applicable part of my journey. As more people are educating themselves about dis-ease they have acquired, I am helping them on the flip side, to a healthier, more fulfilling and enjoyable life.
My journey in this industry has been great and I look forward to seeing where it leads me in the future.