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What is Your Fitness Journey?

I am a fitness enthusiast! I love to run, bike, swim, weight lift, kayak, cross-country ski, rollerblade/ice skate, and I really enjoy yoga.  I get asked a lot how I got started and how I do what I do on a daily basis.

I really think we all have our own fitness journey, whether we’re long down the path or just getting started.  My advice?  Find what you love and do it! If fitness feels like a chore, you may need to explore a few other options to find what you really love. Try biking, weightlifting, swimming, even rollerblading…you might surprise yourself.

Going back to what got me into everything I enjoy and love? I wasn’t a high school athlete and neither of my parents really were big fitness enthusiasts. The start of my journey was almost 15 years ago. I lived in Cassopolis and my first husband was deployed to Afghanistan. As a way to stay busy and get outside, I started riding my then 10-year old mountain bike! I enjoyed it so much, I started going farther until I was riding 20-30 miles every day…on a mountain bike! Eventually, I purchased an inexpensive road bike, which allowed me to go much farther with less effort.

Not long after that, I started going to a gym so I could add some weightlifting and build muscle. I started on the machines but I really had no idea what I was doing. Nonetheless, I started to really enjoy weightlifting and started reading articles and researching, trying new exercises in the gym each time. I loved weightlifting and the new challenges it brought me.

Fast forward 6-7 years. I went through a divorce, later remarried (my now amazing husband), and had my first daughter. I was earning my college degree, working full-time, had a one-year old, and also recovering from mono. I was exhausted and battling depression. I felt extremely out of shape and I had no idea how to fit exercise into my schedule. My husband was taking a Yoga class and suggested I sign up. Yoga ended up being my savior! I did not love it at first, but I gave it a chance and fell in love with it. I started attending Yoga classes 2-3 times a week. Without a doubt, it is what pulled me out of that deep depression and I will always be grateful to it. Not long after, I started training for triathlons by adding running, biking, swimming, and weightlifting to my routine. A couple years later, I had my second daughter and made the proud decision to become a personal trainer and instructor.

My goal in telling my story is to hopefully help others find their path and follow their dreams.  Every journey looks different and life can take unexpected turns. Currently, I teach Yoga, strength, and personal train. I have completed several triathlons, 5k, 10k, half marathons, and completed my first marathon in 2020. If I can do it, you can too!

– Emily Hershberger

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