SHOSHANA GORDON • Member Since 2015 • Portland, Oregon
Shoshana Gordon helps transform her members through fitness, just as she herself was transformed. “As a child and teen, I was overweight and hated exercise,” she says. Her decision to make a change—and, later, get her master’s degree in social work—has given her a first-hand understanding of what her clients are going through, and she enjoys “helping individuals who feel stuck and finding ways to motivate them.” Her advice? “Find the demographics you enjoy, and learn the best ways to help them.” For Shoshana, that’s young people, especially middle-and high-school students. By offering fun programs and classes and focusing on nutrition and positive self-image, she wants to “get kids to make healthy choices on their own.”
MARIA MEJIA • Member Since 2014 • Tempe, Arizona
Here’s some fitness wisdom from . . . a Kardashian? “I’m not a fan,” explains Maria Mejia, “but there’s a quote from Khloe that I really like: ‘Fitness is not about being better than someone else. It’s about being better than you used to be.’” Maria helps her members reach their own personal bests through fundamentals, with a focus on the fun part. A self-described “biomechanics nerd,” she pairs technique with joy. “I provide a results-driven, educational and safe but super-fun hour to their day.” Because “people depend on us to keep them healthy,” Maria sees continuing education as a priority. “I’m always trying to encourage my co-workers to attend the IDEA® World Convention or [take] an online course.”
ANDREA LEONARD • Member Since 2010 • Portland, Oregon
Andrea Leonard is a 34-year cancer survivor, and her goal “is to educate health and fitness professionals to empower cancer survivors . . . [and help] them regain control of their minds and bodies.” She presents at support groups and hospitals on the benefits of exercise and a healthy diet in cancer prevention and recovery, and she encourages fit pros to get specialized training that allows them to find niche markets based both on need and personal passion. “If you’re not genuine and passionate about what you do, people will see right through you,” she explains. Andrea’s idealism is matched by practical advice, as evidenced by her favorite fitness quote: “You can’t out-exercise a bad diet,” she says. “Pretty basic, but it packs a punch!”
If you would like to be featured in this section or know an IDEA member who stands out in the fitness crowd, email a brief description of your (or your colleague’s) fitness activities and achievements and a high-resolution digital photograph (at least 300 dpi, in focus, well-lit and at least 3” × 3” in its original digital format) to Sandy Todd Webster, [email protected] Please include your IDEA member number, if possible. You (or the colleague) must be an IDEA member to be considered for this section.