When you know who you are and what makes you tick, your goals become much more accessible. Catherine Moran, an accomplished lawyer turned fitness professional, represents the significance of channeling one’s utmost knowledge of self to live a healthy lifestyle. Investing the time to discover what works best for her personality, body, and schedule, has enabled her to become who she is today. The ability to maintain a fulltime job as a partner at MDM Law, PLLC while sustaining an equally demanding fitness focused regimen as a nutrition instructor and founder of C. Glory Nutrition, fitness competitor, cycle instructor and boot camp instructor naturally elevates her to inspiratory status for Wear What You Have.
On the surface Catherine’s accomplishments seem foreordained. As the daughter of two lawyers and being a former collegiate athlete, one may assume the inevitability of her rise to established lawyer and fitness professional. However, that would unfairly overlook the hard work, self-discovery and self-awareness that made both accomplishments possible. On being a lawyer, Cat says her parents “removed the glamor of it for me….they said law school is not fun; being a lawyer is very demanding.” She decided to go to law school anyway. When she told me that she chose to pursue law school at a young age despite her parent’s candor regarding the tough journey that lay ahead, I began to understand that doing whatever it takes to get what and where she wants began at a young age and hence characteristic for Catherine. Not letting hard work deter her from her desires became a salient theme throughout my conversation with Catherine.
Similarly to the illusion that having attorney parents would make the choice to go to law school easier, the ease of a collegiate athlete becoming a fitness professional is equally deceptive. Playing basketball in college did lead Catherine to the path of healthy living, but not the way one would think. During her time in law school when she was no longer involved in organized sports Catherine says, “I was eating like I was still a collegiate athlete without the two-a-days; I accepted my Juris Doctor along with 50 additional pounds.” The reality is that being an athlete left her unprepared for living the life that she lives today. She says, “things that came easily, I was told. I was told to run. I was told to lift weights. I didn’t do it out of my own volition. I didn’t really know what living healthy was outside the structure.” She found that without the structure created by being a high school and college athlete, her path to reclaim her health lacked definition.
Aware of her struggles, her parents introduced her to a trainer who she credits with changing her life. “He introduced me to nutrition….corrected my running form…. I ran my first half marathon in 6 months after meeting him and dropped 20 pounds and I fell in love with the fitness industry”, she exclaims with fervor about her trainer. And love is the only term I can find to define Catherine’s passion towards fitness given her commitment to stay fit and healthy. After her first half marathon, Catherine began her involvement in fitness competitions, which mimicked the structure of her collegiate athlete days; hence setting the foundation for her success. She admits that “I wanted to compete because I recognized personality wise I needed to be in some competition in order to thrive.”
In addition to allowing her to rediscover the competitive environment that fostered fitness and health in her past, fitness competitions catapulted her into the nutritional expert/entrepreneur of C. Glory Nutrition and a cycle instructor for 24 hour fitness that she is today. First and foremost healthy eating is compulsory for a fitness competitor. With fitness “I got into the nitty gritty of eating clean…just listening to professionals”, she exclaims. Learning and practicing meal planning set the seed for C. Glory Nutrition which services over 100 clients and provides multiple services including but not limited to, grocery list planning and recipes to help individuals achieve their fitness goals. C. Glory Nutrition transcends entrepreneurial effort: it’s a mechanism for Catherine to pass the gift of health to others. She hopes that she can be a “light” like her trainer had been for her to others. When she offers others advice regarding nutrition, it’s so that she can pass the happiness she feels to them. She says, “I have never been this happy and it has to do being healthy.” Like nutrition, any formidable fitness competitor must incorporate frequent cardio in their workout regimen. Because of injuries and arthritis resulting from her basketball days, running wasn’t an option for Catherine. In order to maintain her gains, Catherine’s trainer recommended cycle. When cycle became her cardio, once again Catherine found the opportunity to turn something that she loved into a vehicle to enrich others’ lives by becoming a cycle instructor.
Currently Catherine leads 6 cycle classes, 2 boot camps, works out with her personal trainer on top of her fulltime job. So how do you live with extracurricular activities that are just as demanding as your fulltime job? She ascribes her ability to juggle a busy life to planning, learning her limits and accountability. “I live and die by my calendar”, she says regarding the importance of planning to her. She staunchly believes not planning hampers ones capacity to accomplish goals. Having a calendar also allows Catherine to set her limits because she can easily identify when she has competing priorities. Time is after all a finite resource and not even she can do it all. Lastly, accountability from family and friends who are aware of her goals help her stay on track.
Her advice to others who want to be fit and healthy? She stresses, “there is not a cookie cutter response to this.” This is one of the most refreshing parts of our conversation because she underlined the difficulty of maintaining a simple healthy lifestyle let alone a challenging one like hers. In short do what works for you. She says that could be “a class that you like” or a trainer like she did. Once you get into the routine and you see the results, “you’ll be motivated to make better choices in the kitchen.” Her other piece of advice is to change your eating gradually. No matter how alluring it may seem to go 100% cold turkey on your bad habits, “going 100%, that’s not sustainable; you’re going to end up cheating”. If you want it to be a lifestyle change, it has to be gradual.