Welcome, I’m so glad you are here. I’m Carolyn, an educator of personal trainers, professional lifestyle coach and author of the award winning blog, “living well”, my food, fitness and beauty blog.
I’m a wife of an amazing, supportive man, mother to two beautiful grown up girls and their very handsome husbands and grandmother to 4 adorable children.
I have spent the last 41 years passionately educating and training budding professionals &personal clients in the health, fitness& wellness field and have loved (well, almost) every moment.
How i got into this crazy, wonderful field has not been a straight journey so, if you have time for a cup of tea (or glass of wine) and a life story, please settle in. If you just want the quick, down and dirty facts you can find them here:C
I had a mostly happy early childhood, playing with my dolls, dressing up my cats, enjoying the outdoors, and creating some amazing imagination games. Until:
At the age of 7 I was struck with a severe bone disease that landed me in the hospital for 2 months (all summer) with 2 painful shots of newly discovered penicillin in my hip every day. I was told I would lose my left leg, if the new drug did not work but, miraculously, the massive doses of penicillin worked and I was let out of the hospital just in time for school to begin.
Back in school I found myself loving all things music and art but hating P.E. where, with my weak legs, I was always the last picked for sports teams and games. By the time I graduated from elementary school I was chubby, covered in pimples and sprouting a mouth full of braces.
That summer I was invited to go to the Oregon Coast with my best friend’s parents for a week. It was heavenly! Every day we walked miles on the long beach and by the time the holiday ended I had lost 10 pounds and my skin had started to clear up. I kept up the exercise and by the end of that summer my self esteem and confidence were much improved.
High School came and went. At 16 I applied for an exciting opportunity to run a Teen Fashion Council at the city’s largest department store. Competition was fierce but much to my surprise I won the position. I got to write newsletters and run fashion shows which I totally loved. When an opportunity to become a Cosmetician came up a year later, I applied and went on to work in that field for the next 10 years. I loved making women look and feel beautiful so it was a great way to fund my university education.
With encouragement from my parents I decided to audition for a university degree as a Voice Major. I was accepted and spent 5 years of study in music. While I loved music, I found myself longingly walking through the P.E. building a couple of times a week and wished I had been talented enough to try for a P.E. degree.
After graduating from university I decided to put my love of music and movement together and approached my local community centre to let me teach classes for women. These classes quickly reached 200 women /class and were the first “Aerobic Classes” in Vancouver B.C. Canada.
Soon I was asked to teach classes for teens, children’s and seniors. Cooking for weight loss classes were next to be developed. I was so aware of my lack of knowledge about how our bodies work so I enrolled in a brand new 2 year university post diploma program in Fitness and Nutrition Management. With this 2 year Diploma under my belt my new career moved quickly.
Teaching Instructor training courses for Canadian Fitness at the College level, then on to the YM/YWCA where I was hired as their Senior Program Director, in charge of 55 staff . From the “Y” I worked in community recreation and fitness as a City Programmer.
By 1997 I felt I had learned enough to build my own fitness and health centre. My dream was to create the most professional and holistic centre with many services available under one roof.
Northridge Health Performance Centre included personal training, cardiac and lung rehab, every type of group exercise class and yoga, a metabolic weight loss clinic, health coaching services, a full Day Spa and eventually a Physiotherapy Clinic. I ran instructor training courses, conferences, day retreats and even fashion shows for charity in my health centre and won many awards for our customer service, innovation and programs.
Like many small businesses, eventually a big corporation moves in next door and offers cheaper prices. That’s exactly what happened to me! After 23 years providing my community with the most professional services possible I, after doing everything I could to financially save the centre, was forced to close the business doors. I just couldn’t compete with the big gym at $10/month, even if it had no staff and no services to offer.
I still see many of my beloved members who continue to bemoan the loss. You see, Northridge, much to my joy, had become a “home away from home” to many and a true community of like minded people.
The statistics are that 95% of all small businesses fail by year five. My health and fitness centre lasted 23 and for that I am very grateful.
Personally, it took over a year of mourning for my dream fitness and health centre, to finally pick myself up and decide what to do with the rest of my life. At 65 years of age I was just not ready to retire. What should I do to continue to make a difference in this world, I asked myself.
After much thought and prayer I finally had an “aha” moment. I would continue to work in my main passions but, instead of needing a facility I could take my programs and services online.
I am here to serve you through this blog, online community and my free newsletter.