Where There’s A Will | Shannon Michelle
For me, being a fitness influencer and blogger is about helping people. I’ve been on my fitness journey for 3 years now, and I’ve made so many positive life changes both physically and mentally. However when I first began my journey, I had no idea how to start or where to find resources and support. For that reason, my blog is all about inspiring people to be stronger every day, and sharing informational posts on what I’ve learned over the years, focusing on form, nutrition, and recovery. In short: I want to be the fit gym partner helping you out, checking your form, and cheering you on to be a better you! -Shannon Michelle
Throughout life, Shannon always did things where physical appearances mattered. She was a beauty queen, winning Miss San Jose in San Jose, CA. In her late teens, Shannon began picking up modeling jobs after being scouted by a local agent in a mall.” I started doing runway shows and working on commercial sets in Northern California before moving to LA and picking up more gigs there (I’m back in Northern California now). I regulated my diet to stay “skinny,” but I never really exercised or understood the significance of being healthy from the inside out. I felt that I was “healthy” because I was thin, but inside I was weak, not eating the right foods, and was in toxic environments from drinking and partying. I didn’t realize that health was so much more than physical appearances,” Shannon says.
As Shannon got older, a few things became the catalyst for her journey. First, Shannon’s mom was diagnosed with diabetes. After hearing about her struggle with food and exercise, Shannon was prompted to learn more about how these things impact your life today and in the future. “As my mother began her journey of health, I began mine, and suddenly I realized that I had more energy, strength, and was overall happier and healthier! About a year into my journey, I was hiking and slid off a cliff and slammed into a tree. While the scratches and bruises healed in months, I was unable to walk for about 4 months and forced into physical therapy and chiropractic treatment. It was there in the recovery process I learned the importance of proper tracking of muscles, good form for exercises, and how exercising improperly can either injure or re-injure you. #caligirlgetsform stemmed from there, because I want to share what I’ve learned with others,” Shannon recalls.
There have been many obstacles for Shannon to overcome. According to Shannon, the biggest obstacle has been believing in herself and her body’s abilities. “I always accepted that I was a skinny and weak person, and underestimated my own strength. Through fitness, working with a trainer, and trying new things, I began to realize that often we are way stronger than we think, and we will never truly know our limits until we try,” Shannon says.
Shannon has offered her thoughts on how to overcome obstacles of your own. This formula seemed to help her through her tough start to her fitness journey. “My first piece of advice would be to start now. If you’re waiting around for the right time to begin, you probably never will. Mindset is everything. If you believe you cannot do something, you are setting yourself up for failure. Even if you don’t achieve your final goal right away, you become stronger every day and eventually get there. However the first step is believing in yourself and not being afraid to fail. Each failure is a learning process toward understanding yourself, which ultimately leads to success.
My second piece of advice is to seek out a fitness friend or mentor, or join a fitness group. Lastly, I think everybody is different, so each person’s focus area is different. The best path to success is to create a plan listing your goals and how you want to achieve them. For example, if eating cleaner is your main goal, outline 5-10 behavioral changes that will help you achieve this and stick with them. Similarly, if your main goal is to become more toned, create a weekly exercise plan that will help you achieve this. I think knowing your personal goals is key,” Shannon says.
What are your go-to snacks when you’re on the run?
I’m all about the healthy fat – avocados and nuts are my favorite! I occasionally like to munch on an energy bar (I love Squarebars), healthy fruit (pineapple and strawberries are great), and whey protein shakes.
What’s your beliefs on performance diets? Do you prescribe to a particular diet theory?
I don’t, but I believe that everybody is different, and we all need to discover ourselves and what works best for each of us individually. I have good friends who lost weight and became significantly healthier on a keto or paleo diet, and I have others who are gluten free, and that’s great because it works for them. My personal philosophy is to seek healthy food, eat when you’re hungry, and stop when you’re full. And to enjoy your food of course!
In addition to yourself, whom should we follow on Instagram?
You should check out two of my meetup co-leaders @plantsandplanks and @excessmatters for inspirational accounts, and two really awesome ladies!