Sharon Chamberlin is a certified personal fitness trainer through the American Council on Exercise, certified by the Fitness Consulting Group in Metabolic Training, a Fitness Nutrition Coach through the National Exercise & Sports Trainers Association, and a Lifestyle Fitness Coach through the Spencer Institute.
From an early age, Sharon was encouraged to participate in competitive sports - soccer, basketball, track, and softball. She has been an athlete and fitness enthusiast ever since. She explains that her parents instilled in her a level of self-confidence that has touched everything she does.
"I didn't appreciate the gift they gave me until I was much older and began to realize that not everyone had the same sense of self-assurance. It was then that I started to understand how fortunate I am."
Sharon has been creating her own workout routines for years. It wasn't long before she found herself acting as a fitness consultant, answering questions from other gym members and giving them hands-on tips. Then she started meeting friends and family at the gym and taking them through workouts as a personal fitness coach. This soon evolved into designing individualized routines.
It was at this time that she started Catalyst 4 Fitness, with the philosophy that a "one size fits all" program is not the answer for her clients to be successful. Instead, her programs are designed based on her clients' goals. Some clients prefer meeting with a trainer on a regular basis, while other prefer working with an online fitness coach. And some of each are interested in having a nutrition coach because they know that they can't out-train a bad diet. Being able to offer nutrition and fitness coaching and personal training has enabled her to help others improve their health, their fitness, and their self-esteem.
While fitness is unquestionably her passion, her company has only been open for a few years. Her private fitness studio opened in May 2012. This is a taste of what she was doing beforehand:
After graduating from Miami University in Oxford (Miami is in Ohio, not Florida!) with a BA in Business Psychology, she realized she didn't know what field she really wanted to work in. A friend of a friend helped her 'fall into' commercial property management. From that point on, what a ride it was! Her experiences were fantastic and she was given great opportunities to learn from some of the best in the field. She was an adrenalin junky and this fueled her. She dealt with:
- an anthrax scare
- bomb threats - both on the phone and as a result of unknown, unsecure packages on the properties
- 9/11 while working for the government, and all of the additional security procedures, steps, processes, and physical changes to buildings that followed
- SWAT teams
- lost guns
- HR-related issues such as an employee who was drunk at work who she took to get a breathalyzer test, a belligerent employee who weighed about 2.5 times her weight who she had to escort about 1/4 mile to the HR department, an employee who violated his probation and she had to 'entertain' him until his probation officer could get on site, and all of the other typical HR-related goofy things that people do and say
- movies being filmed on the property
- threatened with being held in contempt of court by one of the tenants, a Judge
- kicking CourtTV out of a property because they were causing a trip hazard that could have resulted in lawsuits
- controversial groups such as the KKK wanting to hold vigils or marches on the property
- a janitorial contractor inadvertently trying to clean the blood stains off of a couch that was evidence in a nationally recognized murder trial
- the Cincinnati riots and then the slew of protestors who came from across the country and camped out on the property for weeks
- contractors caught on camera stealing and doing other things not-fit-to-mention on a family friendly website
- a highly sensitive security project related to a well-known local lawsuit involving unauthorized photos of corpses
- and a woman threatening to call the local media outlets because she adamantly claimed that the floor in one of the buildings had a pentagon on it and that her employer was promoting the devil.
She considers all of this to be part of her Type A Personality phase.
She is now trying to be a Recovering Type A by putting all of her efforts, her thoughts, and her energy into helping others get healthy.
Since she opened her business, she was accepted onto the Reader Advisory Board for Women's Health magazine, became a panelist on the NBA/WNBA Fan Forum, and a Lifestyle Advisor for Active.com. Sharon has been interviewed by a nutrition and lifestyle counselor in New York and by ParentsRPeople, an online community for parents. She has authored several articles which are published on the ShapeFit website. Sharon has also been published in issues of the e-magazine Gamut of Life by the American Academy of Health and Fitness. She led workshop sessions on "Forget diets - learn some basic skills to make fitness and nutrition a lifestyle" at the Forest Hills Foundation for Education's A Day for Today's Woman.
More about her, in her own words:
So many people have told me that I need to talk about myself more on my site, in my blog, and on facebook. Frankly, I'd rather talk about my clients and their successes. However, I've been pushed about this enough that I've decided to do it, if for no other reason than to get you off my back. (you know who you are - ha ha)
But seriously, I do hope that this inspires you to take the first step toward whatever goal you have. Whether is it losing weight, gaining muscle, or trying a new sport like parachuting. Go for it! Persevere and you will succeed!
About a year ago, I decided I wanted to improve my physique. Don't get me wrong - I didn't have a bad self-image. But I wasn't satisfied. So I started on a path to gaining muscle. Keep in mind that gaining muscle isn't as easy as just eating a lot of food. Because if you eat the wrong kinds of food and if you don't balance it with proper fitness, you are going to get fat. And I absolutely positively did not not not want to add any fat to my body. I followed a strict nutrition plan and worked hard in my gym. And I ate a lot. I mean A LOT and OFTEN. Don't think that just because I'm a small woman that I can't eat. I'm telling you that I ate, and ate, and ate. In fact, on weekends, I sometimes woke up a little earlier than usual just to make sure that I would be awake long enough throughout the day to get all of my 6 meals in. On top of this, I exercised. HARD. And lo and behold after about 6 months, I gained 14 lbs of muscle and my body fat percentage only went up less than 1%. Not bad!
What I found is that even though I was eating often, I was still hungry. My husband, who is about 6' and has a good 60 pounds on me, couldn't believe it either! Now this wasn't a "I ate too many carbs and now I'm still hungry" feeling. This was my body craving for more food. Kind of weird. I also saw that the muscle I added still needed more definition. Then....
Well, for about 3 months I plateaud. Oh, it was AWFUL! Words can't express how frustrated I was. I hadn't cut back on my calories or changed the breakdown of the macronutrients but I couldn't better define the muscle. I was still exercising hard yet I couldn't add any more muscle, and I was getting antsy. I felt bloated, I looked bloated, and I couldn't button most of my pants. Like I said, it was muscle, but gaining 14 lbs is gaining 14 lbs. Oh...what now?
So....for about 4 weeks I only worked out twice a week, and I ate clean.
I realized I had been overtraining. This is why I wasn't making any progress. This is why my mind was filled with negative thoughts. This is why I was cranky. Well, crankier than usual anyway. I talk with my clients about it but I never thought I would be facing it.
For the first time in many, many years, I didn't miss exercising every day. In fact, I didn't even think about it. Feeling this way actually scared me. But after about 2 weeks, I started to think about maybe returning to a regular routine. And after almost 4 weeks, I hit the iron again, and wow. What a great feeling! This was beyond the endorphins, past the physical exertion. I found I was starting to see results. I only had feelings of relief and pleasure and happiness!
Now that I've lost the bloated look and feel, and yes, my pants fit again (whew!), I'm going to try to add a couple pounds of muscle back on. Not too many, just one or two pounds of pure muscle and then define, define, define.
I'll keep you posted!