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Coach Natalie’s Story





Everyone has a story; a reason why they have decided to make a change or become who they are. This is your “Why”.This story is mine.

My dad…..

When I was a little girl my dad was fit.  My dad was my idol. I remember growing up and (gosh this is hard!) my dad worked at a hospital where he would go to work an hour early every day so that he could run around the hospital. He was proud when my friends and I would hang on his biceps and he would give us wheel barrow rides around our yard. This all changed when he developed a dependency on a prescribed medication for anxiety. He was no longer working at the hospital and was later diagnosed with Bipolar Depression. From that point on the weight became a struggle. Each year he gained more and more weight and was put on more and more medications for each of the conditions he was developing. Diabetes, high blood pressure, anxiety, depression, sleep apnea. I watched all this over many years, probably 20. I tried to be supportive. I tried every strategy from telling him I didn’t want to lose him to bringing him healthy food options. I got excited for him when he walked around the lakes in Estrella. But nothing ever stuck, and my worst fear ultimately became a reality.

I lost my dad suddenly in 2011. I say it was sudden, but it had been my biggest fear for many years. My dad was extremely obese and the body just isn’t meant to carry around all that extra weight. It puts so much stress on the entire body, the organs…the heart. My dad died from his o

besity when his heart and body gave up on him.


This is the last picture taken of my dad. It hangs on my refrigerator for me to see everyday. And if that doesn’t get you, it was only 3 weeks before he passed taken in Mexico where he and my mom celebrated their anniversary. He was uncomfortable flying but he went and that smile was contagious.

The sad thing was I had spent so much time trying to help my dad, take care of my kids, husband, career, that even though I preached it, I wasn’t healthy myself.  There was this moment almost 6 months after my dad passed when I saw myself in a picture ( see below) and I realized…I’m on the same path.  I didn’t exercise, I didn’t eat “bad” but def wasn’t great, I didn’t make time for myself or my health, and it was affecting Who I was.  I started being that lazy parent who didn’t want to get off the couch and play with my kids.  Even though deep down I had that “oh crap I’m following in my dads footsteps””. I was busy and “didn’t have time”.  The last straw was when they brought in a body fat tester to my work.  I knew I wasn’t ideal….but it registered me at 40% body fat!!!!  I broke down in tears…I was at the “unhealthy level”. I was my dad.  That was the day things changed.

I decided to be healthy for my family and loved ones, and for me. I was never athletic, hated working out because it didn’t “feel good”. I was intimidated by everyone that seemed to always be better at anything physical. I never tried. But at this point I didn’t have a choice…and I did it.  And when I did I decided that I was committed. With each session at the gym it got a little easier and my body became conditioned to it. Just like a lot of you in your first weeks, I realized that when I did exercise, I was a more patient mom and wife, I started liking the person I saw in the mirror and I made a vow I was going to stick to this to make sure that I never put my children through what I felt; what my mom felt in losing her life partner.

It wasn’t easy changing my lifestyle.  Unfortunately the way my dad lived; grabbing fast food, spending a weekend “relaxing” on the couch, is considered normal.  People will bring doughnuts into my work and be like “come on live a little”.  I was the typical “busy working mom” always on the go.  But what I realized is that “normal” to most Americans is the same path my dad took and I couldn’t do that.

It is hard to be fit when everyone around you isn’t. The more I did it thought the more passionate I got about it. I got to the point where I couldn’t keep it to myself.  I saw people, just like my dad, just like me in the above pic, who were struggling and lost.  I thought to myself “what if I could help just one family not suffer what mine has.  It became my passion.

I wanted to learn more, I wanted to achieve more so I got a coach, got more results, and then the passion got stronger ( so did my muscles)and I had to share it so I became a coach! I needed to to help others find what I never knew was out there for me. If I can help even one person, it is worth it. So this is my “why” and what I am doing about it.

Training For Warriors has been an amazing outlet for me because I get to help hundreds of people every month go the opposite way of my father.   I treat every person who walks in the door as if they were my dad; out of shape, frustrated, tired, scared, lost…desperate.  If you guys know me I love challenging and pushing people in workouts, but what most don’t know is get REALLY excited to watch a mom do a push up for the first time, or to hear a dad come in and tell me he could play basketball with his son.  These are not the studs who do 1000 pushups or lift the most…but to me they mean the most!

If you ever are struggling, if you ever get too lost or overwhelmed, remember your why, and know the Coaches at TFW are here for you!

Coach Natalie

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