Mariah Lyn MacDowell shares her personal trainer journey
Having grown up in an athletic family, helping friends get in shape came naturally to MARIAH LYN MACDOWELL. So much so that it guided her to her career as a personal trainer and owner of MariahLyn Fitness in Wilmington.
“Seeing the change in my friends pushed me to get my personal training certification and make a career helping others,” MacDowell explains.
MacDowell went to school for athletic training to work with sports teams and do rehab, but decided not to pursue it long term.
“I was not a huge fan of working with teams or doing rehab, I preferred the one-on-one with individuals and having that connection,” MacDowell says. “Watching the change in people’s bodies and seeing their mindset about fitness and nutrition change is very inspiring.”
Seeing people change for the better is what motivates MacDowell to be the best she can be for her clients.
“Not many people can say they make a difference in people’s lives with their job, but it pushes me to be better for the people I work with,” MacDowell says.
WILMA: What influenced your decision to get into personal training?
MacDowell: I used to be a swimmer and got into the weight room and it changed for me in the last few years. I got into physique competitions and did that for three years until I came to the realization that was not the lifestyle I wanted to continue. I wanted to enjoy life.
I wanted to eat what I wanted to eat but in moderation. I do meal prep for organization, but when I am with friends and family, I am not going to restrict myself. I wanted to lead by example, and not only be a personal trainer and be a lifestyle coach, as well.
WILMA: What does it mean to you to be a lifestyle coach?
MacDowell: Many clients come in for fitness, but there is other stuff happening in their lives that plays out in their fitness. How they incorporate fitness in their daily life, the habits in their nutritional fitness really impacts their overall health.
I often have clients track their food, write down their portion sizes, and I review it with them. I do not do a total overhaul. I won’t have them do too big of a change, too fast because that is not sustainable.
WILMA: What is your fitness philosophy?
MacDowell: Do what you find the most enjoyment in is what will work for you. Do what you enjoy doing, and there is no right or wrong, it is whatever works for you. Do what you enjoy doing most and what works with your schedule and your timeframe and whatever flows with your life.
WILMA: What is your biggest challenge as a personal trainer?
MacDowell: It is getting people to understand the value of personal training and how much they can benefit from it.
WILMA: What are some goals for MariahLyn Fitness?
MacDowell: I want to have retreats for men and women where we focus on nutrition and fitness and how we can incorporate it into our lives, and I hope to have spring and summer classes at one of the parks for small groups.
To view more of photographer Terah Wilson’s work, go to terahwilson.com.
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