I always like to start off by asking my guests how they got interested in health and fitness. What’s your story Edie?
My story….hmmmmm…I have always been into working out, taking workout classes, etc…. but it wasn’t until I quit my job of 4 years back in 2011, that I found myself lost, without a job, and depressed yet again. I stumbled upon bodybuilding dot com and Jamie Eason’s livefit trainer back in the fall of 2011 researched the whole program, followed Jamie on her page, found other fitness icons, and so much valuable information on the bodybuilding dot com sight that I just decided that I wasn’t doing anything else productive so I might as well do this program of intense weight lifting, clean eating and food prepping. All of these things were new to me, so I researched as much as I could and tried to just absorb as much as possible. I got my husband on board with the program and his support of my newfound lifestyle has been incredible. I fell in love with the results that came from changing my diet, the heavy lifting, all of it. It became a place I could let go of the rest of the world, kept by depression and anxiety at bay, and just made me a happier person in general. I loved it so much, as did my husband, that we both got our personal trainer certification in spring of 2013. 🙂
I know that you’re also hearing impaired, has that affected your fitness journey and if so to what extent?
I am hearing impaired. I have been for as long as I can remember….maybe as early as 1st or 2nd grade. I wore hearing aids in school and caught all kinds of ridicule, jokes, stares, etc. It was hard to deal with. I never wore my hair up due to people looking, staring, and talking about what was in my ears. It was so hard that I quit wearing them at some point. I tried a new kind as an adult, but I haven’t found anything that works for me. I have a type of loss that can’t be repaired and to this day I’m not sure how or why it happened. At best, I have been told It was due to multiple ear infections as a baby. I read lips a lot. Not sure how I learned to do this or when I started. But I do okay in day to day dealings with people face to face, but if someone turns their back to me and is still talking, I can hear ‘something’ but I can’t make out what they are saying. Its just muffled noise. And I can’t see their lips. I am very fortunate that I have family, friends and coworkers who deal with it with no problem. I am the first to make a joke about it. I’m not sensitive to it as much anymore. Many people never even know I have a hearing impairment, until I tell them. I am very good at reading lips. I struggle on the phone or electronic devices…. I guess it is because I can’t see their lips. Phones are hit and miss… depends on the phone, depends on the person talking to me, etc. It hasn’t really affected my fit journey. It’s actually helped it. I am able to use the web and socially interact with others by typing vs. talking. I like it. A lot! 🙂
What has been the most difficult health and fitness challenge this far?
The most difficult challenge so far…..going back to the job I left originally and trying to stay on schedule with my new fit lifestyle. I had to take whatever schedule was offered and had to work my fitness around it. I had to spend my one or two days off preparing my food (as well as my husband’s food) for the week to stay on course. I had to be flexible. I had to figure out the balance between having to work and wanting to get to my happy place at the gym. Never easy, but always worth it.
You’re obviously very passionate about health and fitness but you also love to motivate and inspire others to believe in themselves that they can do great things. Why do you think you have this passion to pay it forward?
I think I have the passion to pay it forward because I know how much fitness changed my life. Sure the physical benefits are great to see as they happen, but the mental aspect far outweighs the physical, for me anyway. People don’t think they can do it. They don’t want to give up their comfort zone, or what they have known and believed for so long. People want to complain about their weight, their lack of time, lack of motivation, their energy level, the medications they have to take and I want people to just explore the option of changing their eating habits and physical activity. Those two things alone can change all of the above. I like to show people that it can be a lifestyle of balance. It doesn’t matter what type of activity you do, find what you enjoy and just do it.
On your Social Media pages you specifically mention the importance of others believing in themselves. Why is it so important that we have belief?
There are enough people in this world who will tell you that you can’t do something. Laugh at you for even trying, and then say I told you so when you fail. Believe me! I have been there!! You have to first get your mind right, find what moves you and go after it. Sure, people may still whisper, laugh, and criticize as you begin, but give it a few weeks and those same people who doubted you will start asking you what you are doing, how you are doing it and quite possibly to help them.
Have you always believed in yourself? What do you do in a moment of self doubt?
Believed in myself? HA! No, I have more self-doubt than you could imagine. I have self doubt about a lot of things. From whether or not I can inspire others, to whether or not I can take on this or that physical training challenge, whether or not I can keep the balance of the fitness lifestyle, whether or not I can actually help another person. When the moments of self doubt happen, I just have to recognize it, take a deep breath and focus on what’s important. Basically I just move through it. I have to focus on one thing at a time. Whether it’s food prepping. Whether it’s getting to the gym. Whether its answering messages from others asking for help. I just have to focus on one thing at a time and move forward.
That’s great Edie. If you could only give us your two very best health and fitness tips, what would they be?
My tips would be: everyone has to start somewhere. Start where you are, do what you can with what you have. This can be making a few different food choices, getting active, find what you enjoy. Also, to not compare your journey with someone else’s. We each lead our own and that’s how it should be. Not trying to compete or be better than someone else. Just be you.
What were your goals for the year?
My resolutions for this year are to remain the course, take part in a few fitness challenges, continue to help and motivate as many people as I can. I hope to gain more certifications to expand my fitness education and hope to offer online personal training as well. I am also new to yoga. It is always challenging which is why I love it. I hope to do more of it and get better at it this year.
Do you have any advice for people who are planning to take their health and fitness to the next level?
My advice would be to find an activity you love and do it. If you don’t love it, you won’t do it. Always find something that challenges you so that you don’t get bored.
Is there anything else you’d like to share with our readers?
Not that I can think of! 🙂 Thanks for considering me for this project. It is something I never ever thought I would be able to do. I feel very honored to be a part of this.