Meet Sarah, a current student at Costal Carolina University in South Carolina. Sarah is a fitness and wellness coach who has the additional obstacle of type one diabetes Sarah's story is truly inspiring - thanks for sharing!
WHAT ARE YOU UP TO RIGHT NOW? ARE YOU IN SCHOOL, WORKING?
BEING A HEALTH AND WELLNESS COACH, YOU HAVE TO BE BOTH MENTALLY AND PHYICALLY STRONG. TELL US MORE ABOUT YOUR ROUTINE ON HOW YOU DO SO.
I am a full time college student first and a health and fitness coach second but they both feed into each other’s success. My schoolwork and obligations will always trump my health and fitness coaching because that’s what’s important to me! But again, if it’s important to you, you will figure out a way! Stay up a little later, get up a little earlier! I love health and fitness because it not only makes your body strong but it also helps with your mental status. If I am in the middle of studying and can’t focus, I will go knock out a workout and feel so much more alive, focused and ready to crush whatever task is in front of me! The discipline of college has feed into my success as a health and fitness coach, I make my own deadlines and have benchmarks that need to be met just like you would in a college course!
HOW DO YOU FIND TIME (OR BALANCE YOUR TIME) TO HAVE SUCH A HEALTHY AND ACTIVE LIFESTYLE ALONG WITH ALL OF YOUR OTHER OBLIGATIONS?
We all are given the same number of hours in a day, so it’s not making the time for activities, it’s finding the time for them! People always ask me how I keep it all straight and the real answer is, I DON’T. A ton of the things on my to do list don’t get done each day and it’s okay. For me, I have to use a planner to stay organized otherwise half the day will be gone and I will not have anything done! Organization is SO important in my life!
WHAT INSPIRED YOU TO CREATE THIS HEALTH AND WELLNESS PROGRAM? WHAT HAVE YOU LEARNED FROM IT?
Type one diabetes is an autoimmune disease where the pancreas no longer produces the beta cells that your body needs to break down food and drink to use for energy. With t1d, you have to use an alternative form of insulin via an insulin pump or multiple daily injections. For people with type one diabetes, good blood sugar controls are everything. A long time after being diagnosed almost 14 years ago, I didn't think exercising with type one diabetes was a realistic goal. It wasn’t until I had finally had enough with my college diet and bad habits that I knew I had no option so I had to figure out the balancing act. When I first started, I went to the gym with my boyfriend but I would end up with a low blood sugar; that means that you need to eat or drink to raise the blood sugar or you will pass out. Kinda counter productive don't ya think? I used to watch videos on YouTube that were short in time but the workouts were so effective plus I was able to do them at home! That was exactly what I needed; I had all my low blood sugar snacks in my cabinets, didn't have to worry about driving anywhere, my CGM and water were only steps away! it was perfect!
I had a feeling that maybe I wasn't the only t1d that felt like they were stuck between working out and not working due to blood sugars. I had finally found a safe and healthy way to exercise and i wanted to share that!
Working with other t1d’s and just others in general has thought me a lot. Everyone comes from different paths in life and brings different perspectives and ideas to the table! My dad always says “you learn something new everyday”.
WHAT ARE YOUR TOP FOUR PERSONALITY TRAITS AND WHY
AMBITIOUS: Being a type one diabetic effect every aspect of your life, it slows you down sometimes but you have to remember that those are speed bumps, not stop signs. Just because it takes a little bit longer does not mean give up! This has in return played into every aspect of my life, I knew I could never settle for ordinary. I am a go all in or don't go in at all kind of gal, so everything I do is 100000% or 0%.
HARDWORKING: I have never been the smartest, or the most prepared. I have however always found a way to make it work, I think that goes hand in hang with being ambitious. If you want it you will figure out a way!
STRONG: Again, with type one diabetes, you have no other choices but to be strong. You live in a body that is constantly trying to kill itself. There are no off days, no rest days or giving up.
PASSIONATE: I am passionate about things that can help others! Advocacy for type one diabetes, so that one day will have a cure! Heath and fitness, to give others to feeling of taking their own lives back! Fashion and accessories because everyone should be able to express themselves For me, I like being the brightest person in the room.
YOU ARE AMBITIOUS AND HARDWORKING HOW DID THOSE TRAITS HELP YOU START AND GROW STRONGHER DYNASTY?
I was never the type of girl that had a million girlfriend in fact I typically had one good friend and that was it. It was more so about quality than quantity for me. After high School I moved out of my small town in Maryland to find something greatest then what was offered there. I knew no one, and to me that was SO scary but I knew I needed to do it. I moved 400 miles away to Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. There i found roommates and a few friends but they were never “my people” you know the ones that you just click with, you can finish each other's sentences and you just get?! I wanted those people in my life that would love the things I loved and hated the things I hated. I founded StrongHER Dynasty because I knew I needed help, I couldnt changed all the lives by myself and if I was putting out what I wanted in a friend that maybe by some miracle (miracle being the internet) I’d find my tribe. After A few short months, I started to realize that it was working. I was finding genuine, kind, and thoughtful people but not only for fitness and health but for every aspect of life. They were the people you wanted to surround yourself with! Through all the trials and errors, I've learned that you have to put out, what you want to receive!
WHAT KEEPS YOU MOTIVATED? IS THERE SOMETHING IN PARTICULAR THAT KEEPS YOU GOING?
Well I get out of bed in the morning because I typically have to pee, or my insulin pump is out of insulin. ;) Keeping my health on track so that I am able to live a long healthy life gets me up and continuing this lifestyle. I know if I don't live healthy now, I won't be living healthy later. Not only will it help me later but it helps almost every aspect of my life now. I feel better when I live this way.
WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE PART OF YOUR WORK WITH STRONGHER DYNASTY?
I love helping others see their full potential. When I start working with girls, a lot of them don't have confidence in themselves, I am that person until they do. I want everyone to feel like they are worth something!
IF YOU COULD DESIGN A PERFECT DAY FROM MORNING TO NIGHT, WHAT WOULD IT ENTAIL?
Nothing specific - just a day without type one diabetes.
WHAT IS ONE PIECE OF ADVICE THAT YOU LIVE BY, OR THAT YOU HAVE GIVEN TO OTHERS?
Just keep going. There is going to be good days and there is going to be bad days. You weren't put here for life to be easy. You are going to have to find some GRIT.