Updated: Dec 9, 2021
It was February of 2014; I was working as an auditor for the IRS and found myself going through the motions of life. Get up, go to work, exercise, eat, sleep, and repeat. I was a triathlete at the time competing in at least one race a month. All of my free time was dedicated to swimming, biking, and running. Even my lunch breaks were dedicated to some sort of exercise. One day I had a couple of co-workers approach me and ask for help losing weight. I said of course I will help, I started meeting with them several times a week and before I knew it one lady had lost 30lbs and the other had lost 25 lbs. I thought to myself… why can’t I help people lose weight all the time? I shrugged off the thought and went back to working my non-fulfilling job until March of 2015 when GET FIT opened it’s doors, more on that later.
Hi! I am Ashley, the owner and founder of GET FIT Hendersonville.
I’ve played sports, been a runner, a triathlete, and eventually found my way to CrossFit 6 years ago. I guess you can say that I have always been active but this does not mean that health and fitness has always come easy to me.
For the better part of my childhood I was overweight. It was the typical story… my brother and I were very active in all kinds of sports and after school programs. This did not leave much time for anything else so my mom would pull in the drive thru every night to grab food for us. One would think this was an okay way of life considering how active we were but it wasn’t. I always preach… you will never out exercise a bad diet. Even at 7, 10, 12, 15 years old nutrition is important. I was fortunate enough to never be bullied or made fun of because of my weight but internally I bullied myself. I never felt good enough, always felt out of place and wondered why I couldn’t look like the other girls at school.
Fast forward to freshman year of college, they call it the freshman 15 but for me it was the freshman negative 35 lbs. That’s right, I lost 35 lbs. when I started college but it wasn’t healthy. My friends would poke fun and tell me that I ate like a bird or I wouldn’t eat at all. I wasn’t making a decision to do this intentionally; I really didn’t notice I wasn’t eating. Needless to say this all caught up with me and after finals week of living on 3 hours of sleep and red bull I went out to eat with some friends, passed out , unconscious and with no pulse I ended up in the hospital. I was skin and bones, severely dehydrated, and had a really bad kidney infection I didn't even even know about. My ribs and hip bones poked out of my skin and I genuinely looked sick. The doctors told my parents that I needed some help with my nutrition and possibly even talked about an Anorexia diagnosis. It was a terrifying experience that luckily lead to some great realizations in my life.
GUESS WHAT… even after losing all that weight and putting my body through misery I still didn’t look like the other girls. I still struggle with body image issues but the lesson here: it is important to love yourself. Never compare your journey to someone else’s. I have been on all sides of the spectrum from overweight to extremely and I can tell you the happiest place is somewhere in between.
I have always loved being active and exercising. People always ask me why do you own a gym, why fitness? The answer is, I wanted a better life for myself than what I watched my parents go through. My parents both had a numerous health problems. My mother was a smoker and became addicted to prescription medication when I was in high school. This led to a lot of chronic health problems including COPD, diabetes, lung cancer, joint and muscle diseases, and eventually she passed away. My father was in the military. He was injured while on duty and had to accept an honorable discharge. The injuries he sustained led to rheumatoid arthritis. He had quadruple bypass in his early forties and has had numerous other heart complications all stemming from heart disease that runs in the family. He is diabetic and also has numerous joint and muscular problems.
I want people to know that they can combat these things with diet and exercise. I want people to know that they can live a better life. I want to empower people to fight these sicknesses and not just accept that we live in world where having a disease is the norm. I want to stress the importance of nutrition and fitness to people. I want people to know that they do have time to exercise and that it is the best form of self care! Most of all I care and I want to help people.