*Are you happy at the moment?
I am certainly happy most of the time but also sad, excited, disappointed etc. I think learning to accept the range of emotions we feel as humans is the key to being peaceful and also being able to face things with grace.
*If you could go back and say anything to your 16-year-old self now – what would it be?
Learn to trust and accept yourself stat and be willing to be humble. Humility means we don’t have to be afraid to fail and we can take more risks and therefore expand and grow and be enriched. Fearing failure is stifling and keeps us in chains. For me it took maturity to realizes this….prior I was immobilized.
*What’s the most important thing you’ve learned this year?
Letting go has always been hard for me. I am someone who has lost a lot so I tended to hang on too tightly because I wanted to avoid certain things or waste a lot of energy trying to control the outcome. This is a massive personal lesson in relationship to a very willful teenage son. We can and should try our best but we must recognize peoples own will and accept that we all learn in our own time.
*What do you most want to achieve in the next 12 months?
I have partnered with some amazing women in relationship to my business which in of itself is an awesome milestone emulating my belief there is strength in numbers.
*What’s your secret to happiness?
Peace…..if the goal is peace and acceptance you will even find joy and richness even in the hard times. Human connection and community is my passion though. If one thing brightens my day is to see people really connecting.
*What one ritual or practice keeps you grounded?
Exercise is non –negotiable for my sanity. I need to move and if more than a couple days goes by where I don’t I feel it in my mind and body. I am also trying to meditate more (a challenging task for someone who has a hard time sitting still but when I do it pays off).
*What’s your biggest regret?
I try not to have regrets. I do wish I had taken better care of myself when my kids were younger though and moved at a pace I could handle. Running a business full time with three boys in tow took a toll. Less is more I say!
*What’s the most important lesson you’ve taught your kid(s)?
Forgiveness, humility and gratitude is the thing I focus on the most with them. If they can master that at a young age everything else will become easier.
*What bad habit would you most like to change about yourself?
I might like wine a little too much and not sure I want to change it…….
*Aside from motherhood/fatherhood and marriage what are you most proud of in your life?
I am pretty darn proud of myself. I have faced some really hard stuff. I basically raised myself and was let down a lot. I like to think I still love fiercely despite that. The thing I am most proud of by far is the launch of my company on my oldest sons first birthday 15 years ago. It was a dark and lonely year by all accounts and I pulled myself not just out but created an opportunity for myself and my son which became something more than I could have ever imagined!
*When were you happiest?
One of my happiest moments to date was being on a boat with all three of my boys in Jamaica. They were all at peace just watching the water as we sailed through. I was so lucky to capture it. It was the moment where you think- this is life!
*What ten words best describe you?
With 25 years experience in the fitness industry, Andrea is recognized as pioneer in health and wellness across the nation, including Olympic athletes, public figures, aging populations and pre and postnatal fitness through her company FITMOM. She has trained women and men at all stages of life, is a former national level gymnast, and founded FITMOM Company. Andrea’s expertise is sought after to educate consumers and fitness experts via a multitude of appearances, articles, and conferences (e.g. CanFitPro, and her medically endorsed certification program. She is a certified personal trainer, sport strength specialist, yoga instructor, aqua-fit trainer and childbirth educator and producer of her own DVD series. Andrea has shared her insights in books and on radio and television including being a regular guest expert on shows like “The Perfect Fit”, “CP24” and the “The Mom Show.” She’s also worked closely with the Society of Obstetricians of Canada on their guide “Healthy Beginnings”.. Andrea has worked with over 100,000 women and their husbands or partners in the last 15 years including tv personalities, Olympic athletes and everyday women through a variety of stages in a women’s life. “Fitness is the foundation to strong community.” This is a sentiment that transpired out of the launch of FITMOM 15 years ago as a single mom living on assistance. You can follow FITMOM on Twitter and like their Facebook page too!