“I grew up in a small town called Kenora on the North shores of Lake of the Woods in Northwestern Ontario. Lots of my time was spent walleye fishing, swimming and in the bush much as it is today. I graduated high school as an Ontario Scholar taking with me the gold medal for having the highest average mark in the entire school, and a few other awards in Music/Guitar, English and Art. I received a scholarship and, in 2012, I attended York University in Toronto. In my second year I attended Dalhousie University in Halifax for their music program where I sang in the university choir as an alto. We performed at Pier 21 for the holocaust survivors and I also performed in the provincial honors choir in MB. My second language is French and I was studying to be a French culture and language teacher. Shortly after my second year, I fell deathly ill and was in and out of the hospital so much so that I needed to leave university and go back home to be cared for. This is how I turned to health and fitness. 

My dad has always been my fitness role model, bringing me to the gyms since I was 4 years old and teaching me all the techniques. I wanted the energy and vitality my dad had. I decided to say NO to medication and take matters into my own hands. I turned to a natural approach to regain my health which mostly included a healthful diet and consistent exercise with an emphasis on stress reduction and trauma therapy. In 2016, I attended the Canadian School of Natural Nutrition and completed my diploma as a holistic nutritionist. Then became a certified personal trainer with the National Academy of Sports Medicine in 2019. In 2022, I became a certified pre- and postnatal coach with the Girls Gone Strong Academy. All the while birthing and rearing 3 wonderful children who are now 7, 5 and 2. I am very proud to be a mother and to have accomplished so much in my short 30 years. I have never felt better in my life than I do now.

️ What do you love about health and fitness?

I love health and fitness because it is the most natural way to feel good! Eating  raw, nutrient-dense food that Mother Earth has provided me and moving my body in all the ways it is meant to move, getting my heart rate up, my blood flowing, is the greatest way to achieve natural euphoria for me. I want to be the guiding force for others to achieve this euphoric state.

 Why Ascend? 
I chose Ascend because I felt a true sense of caring and community from the moment I started to explore the webpage and connect with Tanja. I feel Tanja shares many of the same philosophies as I do concerning health and wellness. My goals as a fitness coach include elevating people’s energy levels, helping people reach their physical potentials and establishing true connections that make people feel good about where they come to work on themselves. I feel Ascend is the perfect place for me to accomplish my career goals. The emphasis on lifestyle is what really stood out to me because wellness comes with an every day effort to make healthy choices. The name Tanja chose for her business is truly inspiring. In all aspects of life, spiritual, emotional, physical and mental, I have been aspiring to ascend. Every moment is a chance to move up the ladder towards your true potential. Ascend is an amazing, inviting space where you can be seen and accepted for who you are and where you can be encouraged and fast-tracked from where you are to where you want to be.

How do you stay active? 
I am a beach/lake hunter so exploring in the mountains and finding new places to swim has got to be my favorite activity. Of course if I’m going to a lake, my rod and tackle box come along too! Swimming is definitely my favorite thing to do, floating on top makes me feel so weightless and diving underneath into a whole new world makes me feel so humbled by all the underwater mystery. I am trying to overcome my fear of looking straight down into the darkness when underwater.

Favorite indulgence:
How can I even choose!? I’m a cookie dough lover! Homemade cheesecake and pumpkin pie eater. I love the After Eight mint chocolate bars too. 

Are you a cat or dog person or other?
Definitely a cat woman. On my walks, I call all the kitties I see over for pets. I have a huge tattoo of a leopard on my back.

One thing you do to keep motivated:
I have bi-weekly phone calls with my best friend and we discuss the ups and downs of our days and how we can become stronger and more productive. We give each other little tasks and report back to each other. I write to-do lists and short term and long-term goal lists which always feels so great and motivating each time I check off a completed task. I also watch motivational speech videos. The most recent task I gave my friend and I was to video record ourselves making motivational speeches or talking on a specific subject and to just become more comfortable and professional on camera.

Share something unique about yourself:
I am a musician and vocalist. I have played guitar for 24 years. I am currently working on a country album and have 6 songs completed for it so far. Last year, I wrote and composed a love song for my best friend and performed it at her wedding.

Share a non-fitness-related interest or hobby:
I am an artist and enjoy painting realism with oil.