Some of you may already know that my husband (Shea) danced in NIVC's Dancing for the Dream annual fundraiser this past Saturday. His polka performance was definitely on point, and the red sequins vest he was sporting was pretty fabulous. So often I write about our kids on the blog and in my Social posts, but today I want to take time to talk about Shea--something I need to do more of because he's an incredible guy. Aside from being a wonderful husband, father and son (to his parents and mine), Shea is constantly giving of his time and resources to help others. I'm amazed by his capacity to be generous and compassionate. He is an incredibly hard worker, waking before 5am every morning and often sacrificing his lunch hour to do things for others (like practicing a polka routine). He comes home around 6:00 every evening, eats with our family, does the dishes and puts the kids to bed so I can do the work that I need to get done. If I feel like chatting, he'll stay up late to listen, even though his alarm will go off at 4:30AM. He is truly a picture of self-sacrificial love and faithfulness. Have I mentioned I adore him?
Something else I love about my man is that this love, care and dedication carries over into each of the lives he impacts in his job. I know that he sees every client at Better Body Movement as intrinsically valuable, precious, and worthy of his best efforts. When I refer someone to make an appointment with Shea, I know he will take the best care of her. I know that if he isn't equipped to help, he will refer her to someone who can. I know he will always have her best interest in mind. That's just the kind of man he is.
For the blog this week, I've asked Shea to share a little bit of his story and how he got into the career field that he's in. Please continue reading to hear what he has to share.
I was the “strongest” I’d ever been. I had completed basic training in the Air Force, was working out 6 days per week, and was achieving excellent (above 90) on all my physical training tests. Then one day during an intramural football game, I heard a loud “SNAP” come from my knee and soon discovered I had torn the ACL in my right knee. I had it replaced, and then 10 months later “SNAP” again. Then again, two years later, I landed wrong and ended up not being able to walk within minutes. My knee was swollen like a softball and I realized I had once again lost function in my ACL. Why is this important? Isn’t injury just a natural consequence of being active in sports?
It doesn’t have to be. At least this is the conclusion I’ve arrived at since becoming a Certified Personal Trainer and Licensed Massage Therapist. I have dedicated most of my time as a trainer and massage therapist to studying the human body, focusing on movement patterns and corrective exercise. As a result, I have coined a massage and training technique called Functional Tissue Therapy. I now know that if I had been training my glutes the right way, not just moving for the sake of moving, I could have greatly decreased the amount of pressure that was continuously straining my ACL. Could I have prevented this from happening? I'll never know. What I do know is that I was never instructed how to move properly. I was only given instruction to accomplish the task at hand--bench press my body weight 10 times, curl heavier dumbbells, run faster. The focus was never on performing those tasks well, training the tasks to neural-memory, or pushing hard to ultimately achieve the task, but in a safe way. I was part of group training that missed this. Task-based training led me to injury.
While this style of training is not always bad, the question must be asked, why simply train to complete tasks? If you are in basic training, getting yelled at by the training instructor, you accomplish the task. If you are a figure competitor or bodybuilder, you are going to train to accomplish a certain look/physique. If you are an ultimate fighter, you better make sure you can handle the stress and keep right on moving. However, for the average person who is paying to play their sport (or participate in fitness), who will never be paid for their performance, what is the true purpose of training? Is it performance? Longevity? Sustainable movement practices? At what cost do we pursue fitness? Do we want to move well and have freedom in our 80s and 90s?
I know what I want my life to look like when I’m 80. I see myself playing golf, getting into a full squat and standing right up, passing a 60-year-old like I’m 40, and traveling the world. Now I understand that to realize this vision for my future, I need to think about my movement patterns and how I care for my body now.
This is why I’m attempting to redefine fitness as an exercise program (or practices) that promote life and longevity--understanding that human health is holistic, encompassing physical, nutritional, mental/emotional, social and spiritual aspects.
I have designed my program specifically to increase longevity and improve quality of life. I perform the workouts and continue to challenge myself through active play and outdoor fun, mostly on water. Likewise, whatever it is that my clients like to do, I want to help them be able to do those things. Some fitness facilities track weight, body fat, inches, etc., and that is fine. However, I prefer to quantify success differently. I know we have done well when a client tells me “I shoveled snow and was hardly even sore, thanks to you.” Or, when a female client over 60 tells me “I carried my own water softener salt to the basement because of this class.” To me, these comments are some of the greatest signs of success.
I am passionate about sharing my enthusiasm and programming with as many people as possible. To be able to make our Better Body Movement small group classes accessible to more people, we have restructured our membership pricing. We truly want to bring wellness within reach, allowing more North Iowans to Move Well and Live Well. The new small group fitness pricing is below:
Monthly (3 Days/Wk) $99
Monthly (Unlimited) $139
Annual (Save $120/Year)
For any first-time clients, mention reading this blog post and you'll enjoy a complimentary month of group training made possible by our BE WELLness Collaborative Partners. Additionally, to schedule Functional Tissue Therapy appointments, you can reach me at 641 529 0486. Pricing is $75/hour or $50/half hour.