Can you look back on your life and see a moment when everything changed for you?
When you suddenly had to decide which way to go, what to do… or even whether to proceed?
A lot of us can, of course. It might’ve been long ago, or maybe it’s something more recent, like a doctor’s visit or just increased creakiness in performing normal daily activities. A lot of our members over 50 have stories like this, and we think they’re powerful and inspiring.
These can be valuable turning points – catalysts to get us to make healthy changes and start exercising and eating right. Gaining strength, stamina, and flexibility. Enjoying life more as we mature.
Our friend Christine Conti didn’t have that luxury of time. Christine was just 31 when she received frightening medical news: She was diagnosed with an autoimmune disease that could lead to crippling rheumatoid arthritis — as it had for her beloved grandmother, who could not use her limbs.
From that moment, Christine Conti began a journey that led to dedicating her life to fitness for herself and for others. More than a decade later, Christine is a veteran trainer, co-host of a podcast Called Two Fit Crazies and a Microphone, and author of medical-fitness courses. She also has her first book coming out in January, and the title is appropriate: “Split-Second Courage: What If Your Fears Were the Key to Your Dreams?”
We know you’ll find her message motivating.
Don’t Stop Moving
Christine was always athletic growing up and throughout her early careers in investment banking and teaching. After her diagnosis, she went into a dark period of about six months, thinking she wouldn’t want to live if it meant losing the use of her body and burdening family and friends.
Then, her doctor gave her some perspective.
“He said, ‘We don’t know – it could be five years, it could be 10, it could be 15. We don’t know what this disease is going to do to your body. But here’s what we do know: Once you stop moving, it’s all over.’
“And I took that to heart. That was a powerful moment for me.”
Christine turned her part-time interest in fitness into her full-time career. She also became a marathoner and a competitor in Ironman triathlons.
Christine learned that life is finite, and that her disease could strike her lungs, heart, or somewhere else at some point. And she decided to celebrate what her body can do every day.
“I’m lucky,” she says. “I was 31 when this happened to me. Some people wait their whole lives to wake up, open their eyes, and realize the most important things in life are not things.”
Now, Christine loves being a fitness professional, improving and even saving lives.
So do we. Please come see us and let us turn your moment into lasting motivation. And if you haven’t had your crossroads moment yet – well, what are you waiting for?
Holly Kouvo is a personal trainer, functional aging specialist, senior fitness specialist, brain health trainer, writer, and speaker.