Emily Stroeve

01

What is your name?

Emily Stroeve

Where are you from?

Born and raised for most of my life in Hillsboro, Oregon. But just recently moved out to good ol’ Forest Grove :)

What is your profession?

For almost a year I had been an Administrative Assistant for a construction company, but I will be starting a new job at the end of August working with the catering company that does all the catering services for Intel across the U.S.

Describe your family?

My family is one of the most important pieces of my life. They make me who I am. Ben, my fiancé is my best friend and someone that has been a huge support in all my life decisions and is my rock and support. He always has encouraged me to reach beyond having a “normal/basic” lifestyle. Whether it’s exploring a new language, trying a new art class or traveling Ben is for sure my partner in life and my number one go to person. I love him and wouldn’t know what my life would be like without him!

My immediate family including my mom Candice, my dad John and my younger brother Jared are another huge support in my life. I am very much like my mother in ways I sometimes don’t want to even admit. She is one of my best friends, someone I can confide in and be myself around. She always has taught me to be strong and never give up on anything in life. I love being around my mom, more so now as an adult. There are so many things I have learned from her as I’ve become older and have gone out on my own. I feel like I have always had an amazing support system but especially from my mom. She can always calm me down, and put me in the right place to be able to move forward in my life.

My dad, John is a huge support in the fitness part of my life. His big heart, and constant patience has helped me push through many obstacles in life. He always is offering to train with me, try a new workout, and get his run on with me! I am very thankful that he has always been an active influence to keep up on fitness in my life. Even though I didn’t catch onto this encouragement until a few years ago I can never be more thankful that he constantly has believed in me and let me discover all the dreams and goals I’ve had in my life.

My little brother Jared, who is seven years younger than me has also been one of my greatest friends and another constant encouragement to keep on pushing forward in my running and fitness. Unlike my childhood years, my brother has always been an athlete, been in sports and running around. Only until a few years ago was I able to keep up with him, and even kick his butt a time or two in the gym. My brother always has loved me for me and I have always felt like I can trust him with anything and I’m almost positive the feeling is mutual. Even though we are so many years apart, I still feel like we have the best brother/sister relationship someone could have. He’s a free spirit, goofy and a determined young man. I feel lucky to have him as my little brother!

What obstacle(s) have you found most challenging in your life?
For as long as I can remember I have always struggled with my weight. I was always the “chubby” or “bigger” girl in class. I had a lot of self-esteem issues growing up and being confident in myself was something I hugely struggled with. I feel that along the way I had taught myself to be alone with and usually this involved eating not so healthy food.

Like I had mentioned before, I was not the athletic, confidant or a physically active kid. I was involved in art, music and having a pretty decent social life while growing up but didn’t really enjoying working out, and being social in different or “healthy” ways. It wasn’t until I had a huge wake up call about four years ago that I knew I needed to get my act together. At 23 years old I weighed over 300 lbs. with high blood pressure and I was borderline diabetic. When it hit me that this was not the life I wanted to continue to lead I decided to change.

With the help of an amazing personal trainer and my friends and family supporting me along the way, I lost over 100 lbs. in about a year and a half. It wasn’t easy, it wasn’t always fun but that young girl with little to no confidence, low self-esteem, and who was non active soon turned into an active, physically fit young woman who had tons of confidence to push forward in her life. So do I still struggle to keep it together at times? Do I still want to eat that cheeseburger and hide in a corner? Sure, but for myself personally I know I have come so far and that there is no point in me being sad, or disappointed in myself any longer. I have so much to live for now, so much to learn and so many more obstacles that I can now jump, run, skip and hurdle over. My life has come full circle and Sweat360 is another big part of being able to say and achieve these things :)

How did you discover SWEAT360?

A friend of mine who I worked with at the time, Denise told me about Sweat360. I had gotten into somewhat of the same routine at the gym with lifting weights and doing cardio and I needed something more; something to spice up my workouts and keep me pushing forward.

I remember the first day I tried High Def, I couldn’t believe how nice, and encouraging all these people who didn’t know me, didn’t even know my background and didn’t pre-judge me were being! And the workouts!! I had never taken a class where I felt like I was going to die every minute but yet I still got through it and never gave up! It was a way different atmosphere from coming from a big gym and what I was used to. When you asked for help, or needed encouragement from people who worked at the big gym that I came from it was like they turned it around and demanding something from you (i.e. you needed to buy private training sessions, or a new type of vitamin or new protein drink to get the results that they thought you needed or even to just get answers from them!) I was instantly hooked after that first day and have never looked back. I am so happy I made the choice to join this amazing community and have only seen my physical fitness and abilities go to even greater heights since joining this gym.

What is your favorite class at SWEAT360?

I would have to say High Def; even though I love all the amazing classes at Sweat360 equally :) High Def is always hard no matter what we are doing. But the “it’s hard, I don’t know if I can do that rope climb” or “I’m not sure I can do a wall walk” has now turned into “Yea, I got two rope climbs in!” or “That wall walk, much easier now that I have tried it and worked on it each class!” All my doubts, fears, and thoughts of negativity seem to be thrown out the window because of classes like High Def. I can say most days that yea, I feel like a bad ass! And I am dang proud of it and not afraid to say and have people know that I love pushing myself in ways I never thought possible.

What keeps you motivated and inspired?

Call it what you want it, but seeing pictures of myself before I started my journey to become physically fit, and remembering how I felt always keeps me motivated and inspired. Before everything about working out hurt, and it was hard starting out. Now, I can say that I can do this, and yes I can do that without hesitation!

To be able to now say that yes, I have completed three half marathons, almost three years of doing Hood to Coast, and also competing in two relay races this summer is an amazing feeling. Knowing that I have pushed hard in the past few years, and have gone way past my comfort zone in life keeps me moving forward only to better and more amazing things. Being able to say that I can dead lift 150+ lbs. or do a handstand are all things that keep me positive and amazed by the life I have created for myself.

Describe your perfect day?

A perfect day for me would have to be one free of stress and worry. I feel like this is something I sometimes struggle with, but for the most part I feel I have had many of these days already. A perfect day would need to be one with meditation and giving thanks to my body and mind for pushing me to new heights and great achievements. This is a day that I feel gets lost at times for myself with the hustle and bustle of life. If anything another part of my perfect day would be full of sunshine and laughter, things that at times I don’t see, hear and feel enough!

What did SWEAT360 provide for you short term?

Sweat360 has provided me with a constant and stable place to workout in short term. It gives me a place to get away from my worry, fears or doubts and just the ability to lay it all out in my workouts.

What did SWEAT360 provide for you long term?

Sweat360 has provided me with SO many amazing long- term gifts I don’t even know where to begin! First off, I feel like I have a family now that has multiplied! To be surrounded with such an amazing group of people, who are a constant support and a positive force in my life has been the biggest and most wonderful long-term present anyone could ever give me. Sweat360 and it’s members have not only helped me restore confidence in myself but this wonderful place has let me set and achieve goals that I never would have been able to achieve on my own in big, chain gyms. I feel so thankful and happy that I made the choice to hop on the crazy, amazing Sweat360 wagon a little over a year ago!

What is your life mantra? (i.e. Live. Laugh. Love. Etc.)

“When you feel like quitting, think about why you started.” -Unknown