We’d like to thank personal trainer Cari Plotnikoff for her guest post, which follows.

Cari writes…
My connection to Welcome Home is simple: I believe in making a difference and helping others. I believe in taking care of yourself and being healthy and strong as possible to endure life’s adventures. I have a passion for fitness and education, and what better organization to support than individuals who have already committed to changing many more difficult aspects of their life? It takes tremendous courage for those who have sought help and made a long-term commitment to letting go of destructive habits and rebuilding a positive identity and lifestyle.

Any of us could easily venture down a negative and unhealthy path in life. I feel incredibly grateful to not only have the opportunity to share my passion of teaching, inspiring, and educating others on physical fitness, but also incredibly fortunate to hear their stories and learn about their journey. Without having walked in their shoes, one can still appreciate how far they’ve come. I feel blessed to continually learn and grow, witnessing the resiliency and inner-strength of the Welcome Home sisters and brothers. Welcome Home provides their foundation for change. Through empathy comes understanding, through understanding comes belief, and through belief comes change.

IMG_0865Cari’s Philosophy

Most people are not generally aware of detriments from eating a high-fat diet and a lack of physical activity. We do not appreciate the countless benefits from incorporating movement into one’s life aside from the obvious weight-loss/weight-gain. Physical fitness is the ability to accomplish daily activities with ease and agility, free from health problems that impede one’s life.

I believe “Total Fitness” is about feeling better on a daily basis, having control over your life, and caring about yourself. It is about increasing self-confidence, discipline, and inner-strength. Total fitness is an on-going life process, and does not come to an end once you achieve a certain bodyweight –- it is a lifestyle! Not only does my commitment go far beyond helping people look their best, but I am extremely passionate about helping people learn more about their bodies, and taking better care of themselves for life.

Cari Plotnikoff’s Bio:

I am a BCRPA SFL (Supervisor of Fitness Leaders) and PT (Personal Trainer) with over 20 years experience in the fitness industry, and have a SportsScience Diploma at Douglas College and an SFU Bachelor of Arts degree majoring in Psychology and minoring in Kinesiology. Additionally, I’m pursuing a Masters in Counselling Psychology and will be completing a certificate program at Vancouver Community College in Addictions Counselling by year-end. I currently work as an instructor at Douglas College, a counseling peer tutor at Vancouver Community College, and as a group fitness and personal trainer for the City of Surrey, and for Steve Nash Fitness World organization.