I am an AFAA (Aerobics and Fitness Association of America) certified personal trainer specializing in mid-life fitness. I also hold a master’s degree in Ecopsychology from Naropa University. Ecopsychology is the study of the healing relationship between the human psyche and nature. Because of my background, I recommend setting aside a good chunk of time each week relaxing in nature. I’m an avid hiker myself, and the author of a local hiking guide, Contemplative Hiking Along the Colorado Front Range. I’ve led close to 75 hikes and facilitated a few nature retreats since 2009.
I have been a resident of Colorado since 1994 and most recently a resident of Ridgway. I’ve been an active exerciser my entire life, and have tried a variety of fitness programs. In my late 30s I ran half marathons and trained with a couple local running clubs. I was an active user of 24Hr Fitness and currently the local Rec Center and a private gym in Broomfield.
Back when I was running 20-30 miles a week I trying to get down to my lowest adult weight by counting calories and eating a low fat diet. It was a disaster! Yes, I did lose weight, but I was miserable. I was ravenous at mealtimes, couldn’t control my body temperature and was cold all the time, and felt obsessive about food. It took a week to lose a pound, even with careful measuring and counting, and one meal out at a restaurant to gain five! I couldn’t understand why it was so easy for me to maintain my a higher weight, but so difficult to maintain a lower body weight.
I developed lower back problems from the running, which slowed me down for a while. Then I decided that I didn’t have time to both run and hike (which I really enjoyed), so I gave up running half marathons and just went back to going to the gym every day and hiking on weekends. I also decided that I would just eat “real food” and stop the food obsessing. I experimenting with vegetarian recipes and ate a mostly low fat diet.
Five years later I had gained back the 35 pounds I worked so hard to lose and also developed metabolic syndrome. This, despite logging many many miles hiking, jogging and doing cardio at the gym every week and not eating junk food. Again, I asked myself, what was I doing wrong?
It wasn’t until a couple of years ago that I discovered the secret to losing and effortlessly keeping those 35 pounds off–all without hunger and endless hours of long, slow cardio.
I’ve learned the importance of resistance and interval training, and my research into the causes of weight gain and metabolic syndrome led me to want to help others avoid many wasted years doubling down on what isn’t working, or may even be making things worse!
Here’s what I know: everyone is different. While one person may feel their best on a low-fat vegan diet, another will thrive on a lower carb diet. It depends on your genetics and other lifestyle factors. I don’t believe in a one-size-fits-all approach that is advocated by the media or even the government! I want to support you in whatever nutrition plan works for you and makes you feel your best.
Mid-life presents some unique challenges when it comes to fitness and health, and I want to help you overcome them!