A year ago, we were 63 and newly retired from sedentary professions. I had trained for and participated in sprint triathlons and we both love golf and biking. We were in good health. However, we wanted to ensure a long, active retirement and we were pretty sure we weren’t doing it on our own. Then we found Ashleigh.
The process started with an evaluation during which Ashleigh surprised us by identifying problem areas. My back and hip were vulnerable, I was beginning to use my arms to assist myself up stairs and I was suffering greatly with plantar fasciitis, seeing both a chiropractor and orthopedic doctors. Scott had shoulder, back and elbow issues and was beginning to stoop forward toward the “widows hump” that plagues his mother. He also had such tight ham strings that he could not squat or lunge. We thought we were in great shape, but it turned out we needed help.
Ashleigh designed our workouts to start with rolling and stretching for areas that needed therapy and needed protection. Then she added strength exercises for areas that were ready for progress. She researched the causes for the plantar fasciitis and referred me to specialists who have shown me how to control this condition without surgery. And sent Scott to a fabulous chiropractor for work on his shoulder.
We work out once a week with Ashleigh and once or twice a week on our own. Ashleigh continues to vary the workouts, so we are not bored.
A year later, we are both feeling great. My back and hip issues are forgotten, I can leap up the stairs and I no longer have pain from plantar fasciitis. Scott is doing overhead lifts, so his back, shoulder and elbows are no longer problems. And his posture is corrected. And his hamstrings are now loose enough to have full range of motion in his squats and lunges. We have forgotten what it is like to ignore all those minor hurts because they are gone. We both feel energetic and strong and that’s about as physically fit as I could have imagined a year ago.
This year, we have taken Ashleigh up on her offer to try her nutrition program. What a surprise. We’ve both dropped 12 pounds in less than a month in a program that required small adaptations with big results. This has been made easy by Ashleigh’s teachings. We now understand the sugar/insulin mechanism and how it interferes with weight loss. We now know what it takes to feed the body at the cellular level and why it is important to have a diet varied in proteins and fats. We are now huge consumers of vegetables and enjoying them greatly: these are not the steamed veggies of the spas-of-torture; these are veggies with flavorings that we truly enjoy. There is no diet. Only knowledge. And once we understood the relationship between food and how we feel, it has been easy to implement.
I cannot finish this song of praise without touching on how inspiring Ashleigh has been. Her academic accomplishments and life experiences give her an unusual wealth of information to share, which she does freely. She is compassionate, encouraging and thoughtful, with a playful sense of fun. Ashleigh has made a difference in our lives and we feel extremely lucky to have access to this very special person.
I am the last person who would have considered adding deadlifting to my exercise program. I always thought that this movement was actually detrimental to a person’s health. It seemed to me that it would place a great deal of strain on a person’s low back area. I just couldn't see any benefit to it.
I have personally had low back issues over the years, so for me to incorporate deadlifting in my workout regimen was never even a consideration.
But in working with my coach, Ashleigh Gass, a highly successful fitness competitor as well as an awesome strength and conditioning coach, I have found deadlifting to be an excellent addition to my workouts. I have found that the deadlift has greatly improved my lower body strength as well as my overall body strength. I also found that my concerns regarding my low back being adversely affected were unfounded. Ashleigh explained to me that if proper form were utilized, I wouldn't have a problem.
With Ashleigh’s expertise as my guide, it took me about 10 minutes to learn the proper method for performing this movement and I now happily incorporate it into my weekly workout routine.
Thank you Ashleigh !!
It was June, 2012, when I began working with Ashleigh. At that time, I was approximately 50lbs overweight, and my blood work resembled that of a diabetic with brewing cardiovascular disease. Additionally, I'd been struggling with a chronic inflammatory process in my throat, which prevented me from being able to breathe properly. Numerous doctors had fallen short of helping me with these conditions, so I was simply prescribed powerful anti-inflammatory drugs. My next step was to go to the Mayo Clinic.
Within 2 weeks of meeting Ashleigh, I'd completely changed my diet based on her nutritional education program. Her training methods turned my body around quickly and I began getting all my strength back. My throat began clearing up, and within one month was 80% clear. Now, 5 months later, I've lost 36 pounds, 7 inches off my waist, approximately 10% body fat, and gained a substantial amount of muscle mass.
My blood work has completely reversed, I am no longer pre-diabetic and all of my cardiovascular indicators have moved into the healthy range.
I am 69 years old. I can deadlift almost 200lbs, squat almost the same, and am well on my way to bodyweight chin-ups! Ashleigh literally saved my life.
I started working with Ashleigh after I regained 12 of the 25 pounds I had lost…I was reverting back to unhealthy eating and wasn't exercising enough.
She’s been a treasure to work with… very encouraging while she pushes me to get stronger and leaner. Ashleigh works with people and pays attention to their physical injuries and limitations. She is almost finished with her master’s degree in nutrition, and we have many conversations about food and how to make small changes every week to add more healthy foods to my diet and eliminate the junk. I did not diet or deprive myself, and I've lost over 20 pounds since we've worked together.
Everyone needs someone to be accountable to on a weight loss journey, and Ash is a trainer who understands if you don’t change the way you eat, you won’t get the body transformation you want. I highly recommend hiring Ashleigh if you want your best body ever!
MBA, RD, LD/N
A few years ago, I had the privilege of taking an 8 weeks to wellness class at work trained by Ashleigh. Some of it did stick with me and then I noticed with work, my lifestyle went non-existent including eating right. I took the information out that Ashleigh gave us and created check off lists for us to do to get back on track and then started going to Ashleigh for training.
We plan on continuing training with Ashleigh and she has inspired us to not only clean up and organize our kitchen but to de-clutter and organize our home and life. We have gotten some family members eating better as well and feel so much better about ourselves! She has opened our eyes to eating quality foods, not by quantity or calories.
Vickie and Paul Massmann