Favorite workout song: Fighter by Christina Aguilera and Savior by Rise Against
Favorite outdoor activity: I LOVE hiking with my family! There’s nothing like climbing a challenging mountain and stopping at the top for a picnic lunch.
I also love creating bootcamp style obstacle courses for myself at the park, using whatever is available in nature for equipment.
Favorite motivational quote: There are so many!
“If you’re going through hell…keep going.”
“If you want something you’ve never had, you have to do something you’ve never done”
Favorite Words to Sweat by (or other) mantra: Healthy. Strong. Happy.
The Heavy Lifting
What does being “healthy and fit” mean to you? For me, being healthy and fit means having the strength and energy to do all the things you need to do AND all the things you want to do. A truly fit person is healthy physically, emotionally and spiritually.
Have health and fitness, in some form, always been a part of your life? If yes, how so? If no, why not?
Absolutely! When I was very little I used to take dance lessons several times a week and then play football and basketball with my older brother on the weekends. I started teaching dance classes when I was 14 years old and got my first fitness instructor certification when I was 20 years old.
My body feels better when it’s moving.
What challenges have you faced over the years related to your health and fitness?
I have had 2 major challenges to overcome. The first was my battle with severe body image and eating disorder issues. My problems started when I lost my brother at 17 years old. When he died, a big part of my self-esteem died with him. Feeling a loss of control over my life, I turned my pain inwards and started restricting what I ate in an effort to regain some sense of control. I spent close to 20 years alternating between the extremes of starvation and compulsive overeating. It took me years to understand the need to be kind and patient with myself and to accept myself for who I was instead of judging myself for who I thought I wasn’t.
The second challenge was a serious illness I went through when I was 29 years old that landed me in the hospital for 2 months with kidney failure and respiratory failure. I was given only a 25% chance of surviving. I beat the odds, but had lost all my muscle tone and had to learn how to walk again. I took things one step at a time (literally) and not only found my way back to fitness, but came back stronger than before!
What goals around your health and fitness do you set and how do you stay motivated?
My goals have changed after recovering from my eating disorder. I no longer need to have the flattest stomach or biggest muscles. I just need to exercise regularly and get enough rest in order to feel strong and energized.
My kids keep me motivated. Both my sons are very active and athletic and it’s important to me that I am not just a spectator in their lives but an active participant.
What types of lifestyle changes have you made over the years that were the most beneficial?
I used to stick to the same type of workout because it was something I was comfortable with and felt good doing, but over the years I’ve seen the benefits of trying different types of workouts. By experiencing different types of workouts, I get to challenge my body and keep myself from becoming complacent.
What tools or approaches have you found most useful in meeting your goals?
Progress not perfection. Instead of getting frustrated when I can’t make it to the gym, I make a plan to make it up the following week.
It also helps to have simple equipment at home that I can pick up and use when I need to. I enjoy using a BOSU ball, boxing gloves with punching bag, skipping rope and resistance bands.
What workouts do you find most effective for your needs and your time constraints?
Lately, I find myself having less and less time to workout, so I need to be creative in order to fit it in. 6 AM spin classes jumpstart my days a few times a week along with strength training an average of 3 times per week.
The Cool Down
What are your next goals related to your health and fitness?
I have never been much of a cook, but I’ve started becoming more adventurous when it comes to ingredients and hope to keep expanding my recipe repertoire.
I also HAVE to find a good yoga class to add to my routine, as I get older I need to keep working on my flexibility and range of motion.
What advice do you have for people looking to find their own health & fitness groove?
Keep looking until you find something you actually like. If you enjoy what you’re doing, you’ll keep doing it!
Some people find that working out with a friend makes it easier to stick to their workouts, so if you have a buddy that shares similar fitness goals, team up and get fit together!
PLAY more! Exercise shouldn’t be something you dread, it should be something you look forward to, so keep it simple and make it fun.”
Want To Connect With Marci?
Website URL: Fit vs. Fiction