SO WHO IS STEPH, ANYWAY?
Even though I love fitness and nutrition, exercise and eating right have not always been an easy road for me. I gain weight easily and in my early 20s, I spent most of my days either overweight or yo-yo dieting without much success.
For me, losing weight, discovering how to make the right food choices, and learning how to lift weights and exercise properly has taken me on a years-long journey of experimentation, trials, success, and even failure. With the help of my husband, Erik, we created Strong Figure to write about the journey to finding great health, and to help people who might be struggling in the same ways I have struggled before. My book, REVAMP Your Health, is about this journey and how to avoid the mistakes I made trying get get healthy, all while teaching YOU exactly what to do (and not to do) to become the fittest version of yourself possible.
I’m still learning each and every day about foods, my body, different methods of exercise, and even about topics such as holistic nutrition, muscle recovery, mobility, and flexibility. That’s what I feel separates me from many others–my desire to learn and grow as a person and to share my knowledge with you is what drives my passion to make Strong Figure one of the best sites dedicated to helping people like me, and like you.
I wasn’t always crazy about fitness.
In fact, I never cared a thing about exercise or diet until after I graduated from college. I didn’t have problems maintaining a decent figure in high school, but in college, too much late-night pizza and fast food caused me to gain a whopping 40 pounds. The Christmas after I graduated, my mom took a picture of me sitting on the floor, opening up presents. (I really need to find that picture to show you all.) But months later when I saw that picture–grossly overweight, overflowing stomach, chipmunk cheeks, and wearing the only sweatpants I could still squeeze into–I realized just how foul a crime I had committed towards my body. I was disgusted with myself.
I Tried EVERYTHING.
I first tried dieting to lose the weight and like most people, I couldn’t stick to any plan long enough to lose what I needed. I tried Weight Watchers, Atkins, South Beach, the Zone and I even tried vegetarian and vegan diets. Somewhere in this mix—probably between Atkins and the Zone—I started going to a gym. Even here I struggled with trying to figure out what would work best to help me lose weight: I tried taking group fitness classes, I went through a running phase, went as far as completing the CrossFit trainer course, and I’ve even tried bodybuilding, powerlifting, and Olympic lifting plans.
I’ve Lost and Gained…
Throughout my struggles with weight, I’ve learned more about health, fitness, nutrition, and exercise than I ever expected. I’ve made friends and lost friends, and I’ve built strength and lost fat. I went from being the fat kid (I sadly answered to nickname “Gut” for a couple of years), to being the inspiration for both friends and family. I became a fitness instructor and became a competitive athlete. But maybe most importantly, after so much failure, I didn’t just find success; I finally found myself again. I found strength, encouragement, ability, and confidence.
has not been easy, but that’s exactly why Strongfigure exists–to make your journey simple so that you can learn from all I’ve been through. I have spent years educating myself about health and fitness, foods and workouts, training and coaching. I have switched careers–from English teacher to Health Coach, Author, Instructor, and Programmer.
Currently, I am a:
- Certified Health Coach
- Sports Nutritionist
- Kids Nutrition Specialist
- Weightlifting Sports Performance Coach
- Personal Trainer
- Group Fitness and Kettlebell Instructor
- CrossFit Level 1 Instructor
I hold specialized trainings in
- Strongman/woman Lifting
- Movement and Mobility
- TRX Suspension Training
- Senior Programming and Training (SAIL)
- Les Mills bodyCOMBAT, bodyPUMP, and bodyFLOW
I also have a Bachelor of Arts in English and Education from James Madison University. Go DUKES!
My Favorite Posts:
- 10 Ways to Love Yourself and Appreciate Your Body
- Skipping Breakfast, A MUST for Fat Loss
- 3 Reasons to Consider CrossFit…for your Kids!
- Why We Pay What We Pay for CrossFit
- Women: You’ll Get Bigger Before You Get Smaller
- How Many Calories Do You Really Need?
- 15 Guidelines to a Healthier Diet
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I hope this blog challenges you do something better for yourself, inspires you to be a better role model for your family, and encourages you to motivate your friends. I hope you learn something new, and that you continually come back for more. If it does, send me a note! I’d love to hear from you.
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