“My goal [as a trainer] is to show others that the goals that may seem unreachable are much easier to attain than they may even realize,” Alyssa DiMarco says. While still majoring in psychology in college, the 24 Hour Fitness Mission Hills Super Sport personal trainer decided she wanted to connect with people in a more hands-on way, especially after being diagnosed with polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS)—a hormonal disorder that causes the formation of small cysts on the ovaries, as well as weight gain.
Having led a very active lifestyle up until her diagnosis, DiMarco suddenly found herself at a crossroads with her health.
“Being active and a dancer my whole life, and with the injuries that occur with that lifestyle and through life [with PCOS], I had always struggled to maintain an ideal, healthy weight,” she says. But DiMarco began setting goals for herself starting with her own health and wellness. Now, 10 years after her diagnosis and six years of dedication to a more holistic lifestyle, DiMarco has finally found a controlled state where she can thrive, thanks, in large part, to diet and exercise.
“Having overcome physical injuries and fighting hormonal imbalances, I’ve grown passionate about helping people strive toward their goals to live a better and happier life,” says the trainer based in Southern California. So when DiMarco met member Margo Gravelle and learned of her hesitancy to participate in a pool session or even go upstairs to the main gym, DiMarco jumped into goal-setting action, providing Gravelle with bite-size challenges meant to boost her confidence.
In a little more than a year, Gravelle has exceeded these goals and surpassed even her own fitness expectations.
“I now can give Margo balance work and moves using the stability ball that she never thought she would be able to do,” DiMarco says. “She now says that she sees the importance fitness holds for her life and she is feeling better, more confident, and is no longer scared of the gym or worried about what other people think.”
DiMarco acknowledges life could have turned out so differently if she hadn’t set her own personal health and fitness goals.
“Truth is,” she says, “my life would likely be very different if I was not a fitness professional. I became a personal trainer to help others live their best lives by improving their quality of life through movement … [and] it is my pleasure and passion to help [members] reach their goals.”
Photo credit: Alyssa DiMarco, Margo Gravelle