I often think of the influences I’ve had in my life, especially when I was young. My Mother was the most instrumental in teaching me discipline, proper nutrition, and she was the first to take me along to the gym. Regarding discipline; while growing up we never went without, but we were not spoiled by any means. The only time we were able to play Nintendo was while hanging out at a friend’s house, and I don’t think we had one of our own until we were all in high school. By then, there was no interest left.

As a kid, we didn’t know what Pepsi tasted like and never had Lunchables or Hostess pastries- much to my dismay sometimes. While other kids were getting all sugared up, I was eating a nutritious lunch with the proper balance of macronutrients. At the time I was mildly dissapointed and wondered why I couldn’t be more like the “normal kids” at my lunch table, but as an adult I realize how thankful I am that I didn’t form some addiction to soda and pastries.

Growing up, I played outside a lot! I made forts out of old boxes and discarded pieces of wood that I found in the garage. I stayed out late playing hide and seek in the neighborhood with my friends, and my main mode of transportation was either a bike or a skateboard. I didn’t feel good if too much time was spent sitting on the couch watching T.V. In fact, we didn’t even have cable, so really what was the point in watching television?

I loved martial arts when I was a kid and often fantasized about delivering a round house kick to an evil-doer’s head. It wasn’t the violence that I was attracted to, it was the amazing agility, flexibility and control that martial artist’s displayed. I loved learning about the potentials that the human body could attain. With proper focus and consistency, the sky is the limit. I was introduced to Bodybuilding after picking up a random magazine at the gym when I was 12 years old. At first I couldn’t believe my eyes. The bodies looked insane, and I had never seen anything like the muscle bound men and women displayed before me.

I found solace and enlightenment whenever I engaged in physical activity. No matter the problem I was having at the moment, being active always seemed to trivialize the issue until it disappeared completely. Thankfully I had my Mom to pass this powerful insight on to me, so now I may pass it on to others.

If you are a parent, grandparent, aunt or uncle, or in any position to influence kids- make sure you are setting the right examples by exercising and eating healthy on a daily basis. Kids are watching and waiting to emulate your every move. What you teach them now will last them a lifetime.

To learn more about private personal training, click the “Contact Me” link at the top or bottom of the page or give me a call at 907-332-0106. Thank you, and I encourage you to leave any comments or questions below.

Article by Stephanie Figarelle, Owner, Figarelle’s Fitness