Born: Baltimore, Maryland (We moved around for a few years, but I’ve been a Texan for 51 years now.)
Parents/Married/Children/Pets: My mom and step-dad are both alive and living (independently) in northeast Texas (where I was raised). They both are in their early 80s and, in spite of some health concerns, are quite active. The most important thing I’ve learned from watching them age is how critical it is to remain socially active. While they joke about having to schedule everything around doctor appointments, their weekly schedule involves meeting different friends for lunch or dinner 3-4 times a week, playing Mahjong, book clubs, actively attending and serving in church services, and taking a Tai Chi class. My step-dad suffers from severe anxiety (as did his mother) but he has found Tai Chi very helpful in dealing with it. Mom has or currently is dealing with cancer, rheumatoid arthritis, lupus, and macular degeneration, but she never complains and refuses to let it slow her down. When I told her about YPB, she said she wishes they lived here because she wants to work out with us.
My husband, Brian, and I have been married for over 32 years and moved to Corpus Christi in 1991 when he was hired to teach at Del Mar College. We have one child. Caitlin is 24 years old, completed a master’s degree in 2017 in Environmental Management and Sustainability, and currently is working on a sustainable farm (former hippie commune) in northern California.
My at-home babies all have four legs. We have 3 cats: Antonio, Chimmy, and Ellie. Well, that’s what we call them but, when you marry a college history professor, your pets have to have historical names. Antonio is really Antonio Lopez de Santa Anna. Ellie is really Eleanor Roosevelt. And, Chimmy? Well, he’s Chiminea … because that’s where we found him … in our chiminea.
Previous and Current Occupation: I hold a bachelor’s degree in Psychology and Sociology, teacher certifications in kindergarten and elementary education, a master’s degree in Counseling, and a second master’s degree in Educational Administration. I retired from CCISD in June 2016, after 35 years in public education as a university administrative secretary (5 years), elementary school teacher (15 years) and central office administrator (15 years).
In August of 2017, I was introduced to Norwex products. Norwex has line of cleaning products/personal and family care products that clean without chemicals and waste. Since taking care of the environment is very important to me – and mostly because I fell in love with the products – I decided to become an Independent Sales Consultant for Norwex. If you are interested in cleaning up to 99% of the bacteria in your home using only water and products made from reusable, recycled, and sustainable materials, I’d love to talk with you about hosting a Norwex party and earning free products.
Hobbies/Interests: Away from YPB, I work on growing my Norwex business and I enjoy gardening, reading, meeting with friends and book club members, doing (beginning) yoga, and creating pottery. I always thought “throwing pottery” (on a wheel) looked like fun so I took a couple of classes last fall, and I fell in love with it. I haven’t had much time to work on it since Christmas, but I plan to get back into it very soon to keep those creative juices flowing.
My husband and I love music and have been working our way through an (unwritten) “bucket list” of performers we want to see “live” before they stop touring. In the last year, we’ve seen America, John Mellencamp/Carlene Carter/Emmylou Harris, (my all-time fav) James Taylor, Bonnie Raitt, Carole King’s show “Beautiful,” and Lindsey Buckingham/Christine McVie (of Fleetwood Mac). Later this year, we’re going to see Diana Krall.
How did you hear about YPB and what brought you to the studio? In September 2017, I saw an ad on Facebook to try YPB for 3 sessions. I recently had lost a considerable amount of weight but was noticing signs that I needed to start incorporating weight training into my exercise routine. I came to YPB and instantly felt at home there and began making new friends. A week later, I gave myself a birthday present … a one-year membership to YPB. I have to say, I have never been a person who enjoyed exercise before. I have been very active in walking and bike riding for several years, but it’s always been what I had to do as part of my ongoing battle to lose weight and keep it off. I came into YPB with that same mindset, but quickly found that I actually looked forward to coming to the next class. I enjoyed the workouts and spending time with the new friends in my class.
What attracted you to becoming a Fitness Professional/Functional Aging Specialist? In December 2017, Lisa Wright approached me about coming to work as a personal trainer. I completed my certifications as a Personal Trainer and as a Functional Aging Specialist, and started working for YPB in January. I love being able to use my teaching background and all of the science/research behind the Functional Aging Institute to help others just like myself reduce the loss of muscle mass, build strength and endurance, and improve balance to reduce the risk of falls/injuries as we age. My goal is to be stronger in my 60s than I was in my 30s, and I know with the work we do at YPB, I will achieve that goal.
What unique qualities do you bring to Team YPB that might set you apart (even just a little bit)? Having been a teacher and administrator for most of my life, teaching a class or working one-on-one with clients seems a natural fit for me. The fact that I’m a client at YPB, as well as a trainer, allows me to continue to be both a student and a teacher … which I love. Since I’m in the “pushing 60 club,” I have a very personal interest in making sure these exercises work and produce positive results for the “mature” client.
What is your own weekly fitness routine? In addition to working out at YPB 3-4 times a week, I walk 3-4 miles three days a week and ride a bicycle 5-15 miles three or four times a week (weather permitting).
What is the most important thing that a Fitness Professional/Functional Aging Specialist brings to your own experience in the gym? Because I recently completed certification as a Functional Aging Specialist, I have become much more cognizant of how each exercise plays a part in improving balance and endurance to ensure we are better able to perform daily activities and live strong and independently well into our 80s and 90s … and beyond.
What type of community activities are you involved in? I am actively involved in my church (All Saint’s Episcopal Church) where my husband and I both serve as ushers and members of an Altar Guild team. I also am involved in a couple of book clubs … one church-based, the other with non-church friends.
What do you look forward to the most working with men/women over 50, their health challenges and/or disabilities? Since I am part of the population we serve at YPB, I look forward to working with a wide variety of clients with a wide variety of abilities and enhancing my own knowledge of motivation/modifications needed to help each of us achieve our “personal best” level of fitness regardless of any limitations we may have.
What is your favorite fitness/inspirational/motivational quote? My favorite quote is from Maya Angelou: “Do the best you can with what you know. When you know better, DO better.”