My story

Throughout my childhood and teenage years, I gained a lot of weight, I lost a lot of weight and I had absolutely no self-esteem. In my twenties I lost my first marriage, my home, and my self-respect. I hit bottom for the first time in my adult life. Then, 15 years later, I followed down the same path and hit bottom yet again. I slipped into a deep depression driven by anxiety from childhood trauma and PTSD. (I was unaware that I had such a thing, until this past year.) I have always found comfort in unhealthy fatty and sugary foods. Self-loathing followed with every pound I gained throughout my life. In high school, I was made fun of for being “the chubby girl”, ‘fat”, ‘Popeye”, and other names too painful to repeat. After high school I went on the “no food” diet. Anorexia, diet pills, and laxatives. I could not be skinny enough. I had my first wake-up call when I was 18 years old. My family and I were vacationing in Caracas, Venezuela, when I realized something was wrong. I was so addicted to laxatives and diet stimulants I began to bleed internally. I never touched another laxative, however, I still continued to take energy enhancers and appetite suppressants. Going back and forth from skinny to heavy, diet pills to binge eating, is mentally exhausting, especially when you can’t stop it. My condition was hidden and went untreated for years. I married in my early twenties and had my first child shortly after. Life calmed down, emotionally, for a short time and I started nursing school.

While in college full time, being a wife and mother, everything began to spiral out of control again. It wasn’t until years later I discovered the meaning of addiction. Addiction is not only illegal drugs and alcohol, it is anything you do in excess. I discovered I was an addict who suffered from PTSD this past year. Wow, that is a hard thing to swallow at the age I was when I was diagnosed. I continued to believe that was not true. How could this be? I have never used street drugs and I don’t drink often. I had an addiction to anything that would make the internalized pain go away. Anything to numb feelings of self-worth, of which I had none. My addictions to food, diet pills, body image, attention, and unhealthy behaviors probably came from the lack of control that I felt. I had deep insecurities and felt I could not measure up to the expectations of the world that seemed to constantly be judging me on anything and everything. Although I did not have that “fairy tale” childhood that I have heard about, I did finally in my late 30s discover that my issues with food were more complicated than just body image and being “skinny”. I had to treat the “why” and I did! I have dealt with adversity, but most importantly I have overcome the hardships and I am reaching my goals and following my dreams one day at a time.

At the age of 39, my life turned around. I finally started to live. I gained control over my emotions and feelings. I confronted my fears and let go of my anger. I gained confidence, strength, and I believe anything is possible. Now, at 40 years old, I am ready to share my story, all my life experiences, and continue helping others achieve their life goals through mindset, balance, strength, fitness and nutrition. This life is pretty amazing! It is never too late to start living!

I am a high school graduate from Winter Haven High School in Winter Haven, Florida. I enlisted in the United States Navy as a Hospital Corpsman in February 1993. I was honorably discharged a few months after enlisting because of my mother’s Multiple Sclerosis. In 1996 I began studying RN program at Pennsylvania College of Technology. In 2003 I began studying exercise science and combined my nursing knowledge with kinesiology and personal training, and discovered I had a passion for helping others reach their fitness goals. I began my experience at a local health club working as the fitness director from 2004-2010. I then moved to a larger facility where I had room to grow and use my skills. I became General Manager of the Bloomsburg SportsPlex in 2010. My experience and knowledge and client base blossomed during these years and I knew it was time to strike out on my own.

In 2014 I became the proud owner of Legacy Fitness and Personal Training Studio. There was hesitation on my part because the area we live in is oversaturated with gyms and personal training. However, I knew my programs were changing individuals’ lives, improving confidence, and my clients were doing things they never expected to do. My approach to fitness was more than weight loss and appearance. I build confidence and self esteem. I stepped out of the “norm” with my programs and began to invent my own programs. They worked, and with this I continued with my education and I am still educating myself. I specialize in healthy eating and wellness, weight loss, functional body weight training, strength training, clean eating and organic nutrition. I coach, motivate, and empower others to turn their excuses into solutions and become their best possible selves. The fitness industry is oversaturated in gimmicks and empty promises.

Being a health and wellness coach has inspired me to combine my skills and study the holistic approach to nutrition and human wellness as well as mental clarity. With all of my experience, education and hands-on approach, I am ready to expand this knowledge and bring my unique programs and training technique to all of you! Education, experience, and certifications: Health and wellness coach, Personal Trainer and passionate about changing peoples’ lives.

Certifications: NESTA (National Exercise Sports Trainers Association), NETA, ACE, Youth and Kids Fitness, Zumba, Pilates, Yoga, Personal Training, Club Management, Sports nutrition.

Experience: I have worked countless hours training, studying the science of the body, how it works, and why one thing may work for one person but not work for another. Everyone responds differently to nutrition and exercise. My programs work, because I coach with confidence, love, compassion, and determination.

Education: Pennsylvania State University: Registered Nurse program, exercise science. Luzerne County Community College: studied kinesiology, anatomy, psychology, chemistry, pharmacology, microbiology, and obtained general studies associate degree.

 

Chara pointing

 

 

 

 

 

Chara with jump rope
I am nightmare free and ready to live.

 

 

 

 

 

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