After graduating from Antioch college majoring in International Relations, I moved to Chicago in 2000. At the time my interests included issues such as freedom of expression, civil liberties, and equal rights. I worked primarily in the non-profit field during my time in Chicago helping various communities in the city. The most notable opportunity was representing the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) of IL as the Director of the High School Civil Liberties Education Project. In that role, I spoke at High Schools in Chicago and greater Chicago to discuss landmark cases, current civil liberties issues and educate students about their rights. It was stimulating to be in a position interacting with a group that was beginning to form opinions about how they view the world. Because of this work at the ACLU, I decided to pursue a career in the legal profession.
In 2007, I moved to San Diego from Chicago for law school. I graduated from Thomas Jefferson Law School with the ultimate goal of becoming a trial lawyer. After my third attempt at taking the bar, I started to re-evaluate my life and made the decision to move forward and explore other options. During that time, I interned at San Diego’s Board of Supervisors Office and held various part-time jobs. Throughout it all fitness was always an important part of my life.
A friend suggested that I explore fitness as a profession when I kept circling it. I soon decided to jump headfirst into this career because all signs kept pointing that way and I was drawn to it. I became certified with the American Council for Exercise and then worked on charting my path. I began my career by building my own personal training business utilizing the skills and with the discipline I had learned in law school. In the beginning, while I was building my clientele, I worked at a gym where I learned not only a lot about myself but also how to work with people of different shapes, sizes, personalities and temperaments while motivating and inspiring them to reach their individual goals.
Over time I had the clarity as to the demographic I wanted to work with. I came to this realization while working with an 85-year-old woman, who completely inspired me. Working with her was extremely rewarding as I watched her respond so well to the work that we did at the studio. It was rewarding because I was helping her improve the quality of her life so she could do what she wanted to do. It was about seeing grandkids, enjoying activities with her husband, going for vacations and enjoying her retirement.
For a short time, I had the absolute pleasure of leading a group class once a week for Feeling Fit Club. This valuable program sponsored by the County of San Diego provides free exercise classes in multiple locations and online for seniors. At the end of each class I led, I was truly moved by the attendees, who expressed how much fun the class was and how much they appreciated being able to take the class. Opportunities like this and others helped reinforce my passion to help our loved ones move better in life. They liked to be challenged and enjoyed learning different and fun ways to move.
My professional experiences have helped prepare me for what I feel that I am meant to do. Being able to help people recognize the power of better movement in their lives is very rewarding. Seeing my clients move in the gym well is great. Yet even more exciting is hearing their stories of what they are physically able to do easier, better and with less discomfort is why I do what I do. As the underlying goal of helping people has always been a part of the work that I have done, it only makes sense that this is at the forefront of where my career path has led me.