Fitness Industry "Pioneer"

Submitted by: Eve Lees

Eve's Success Story

Over the past 30+ years, I've achieved many certificates as a Fitness Instructor, Personal Trainer, Nutrition Coach, and Fitness Appraiser, as well as completing several university and college courses on exercise physiology and nutrition. I consider myself a "pioneer" in the personal training industry: I was among the first generation of aerobic dance instructors to be certified (in the early 1980's) and I worked as a "Personal Trainer" long before it was a recognized occupation (we called ourselves One-on-One Coaches back then). I have been a member of IDEA since 1988, shortly after it expanded to more than an organization just for "Aerobic Dance" Instructors.

Over the years, I've managed two fitness centres, competed as a bodybuilder, owned a Health Food Store, and after studying nutrition at S.A.I.T. and at Simon Fraser University (The Health & Fitness Studies Certificate), I began offering Nutrition Counselling to my personal training clients. By the mid-1980's it was realized fitness instructors should offer basic nutrition information to their clients, so I was asked by the British Columbia Recreations and Parks Association (BCRPA) to teach nutrition to their certified fitness instructors.

I've authored a self-syndicated health column (Fit to be Healthy) since 1985. At one time it was carried by 10 newspapers – including 11 years in the Peace Arch News (White Rock), nine years in the Langley Times, four years with the Surrey Leader and I contributed to the Province Newspaper (Vancouver). My column is still published in four community newspapers. I was the regular Health Columnist for BC Woman Magazine for ten years. Currently, I author a health column in Inspired Senior Living Magazine and The White Rock Sun (an on-line newspaper). Since 1996, I've been a regular contributor to Wellness Matters, a publication of Canada Wide Media. And for almost twenty years (1995-2014) I published my own self-produced health publication, Personal Health Newsletter, which earned praise and respect from many medical and fitness professionals.

Today, I no longer work full-time in the fitness industry, although I continue to freelance write for several publications, and do the occasional speaking presentation. I've also returned part-time to Nutrition Coaching, after a taking a break from that for a few years.

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