Andrea Schwartz embodies what it means to be fit into one’s fifties and is more than happy to share what she’s learned with her friends, family – and you.
Though she’s been a staple in the fitness industry for 30 years, Andrea Schwartz hasn’t always been the pinnacle of health. “It took me years of yo-yo dieting and working out to find the right eating plan and exercise that worked for me,” she remembers. “I knew I could help women that were having the same issues as I was.”
Years later, her resume reads like most people’s bucket list: certified health coach, personal trainer, nutrition specialist, yoga instructor and group fitness instructor. “I used to teach everything from step class to spin and kickboxing to muscle conditioning,” she says. “I love it all.”
An Interesting Turn
That love was born in the midst of her stint in the fashion industry which, while it sounds glamourous, subjected her to long, grueling hours. In fitness, she found a sense of community, stress relief and much-needed energy.
Andrea immediately latched onto exercise and the opportunities it brought with it.
“I loved it so much, I became a certified group fitness instructor and I never looked back,” she recalls. “I knew this is what I was meant to do.” These days, she has paired her love of fitness with her fashion background to create a fun, healthy brand that she is immensely proud of.
Staying stress-free with big responsibilities can be difficult, but Andrea finds solace in her family: her husband David; kids Alec,Jordyn and Zac; her mom, dad, and sister; her best friends; and, of course, her furry little shadow.
“My dog does everything with me,” she says. “And travelling to beautiful places with my family is my favourite thing to do.”
When she feels down, Andrea looks to two examples of fantastic people in her life as inspiration. “My parents have been married for over 55 years,” she explains. “They are both successful, extremely smart, funny, loving and are amazing parents and grandparents. They have created the most amazing family. I aspire to be like them.”
Some people would consider Andrea’s must-do list lofty, but she has big dreams for the next phase of her life.
“My bucket list is to host some retreats, have my own activewear and skincare company, travel to some beautiful destinations I have yet to see, and to one day be a grandparent,” she says, adding coyly, “plus have enough money to save all the animals and cure childhood cancer.”
Her kids are also learning through her and have taken an active interest in staying active. “They grew up around fitness and they learned the importance of being healthy,” says Andrea. “They are living their lives, doing the things that I showed them as they grew up.” Her daughter is a collegiate athlete, her son loves prepping his meals and her oldest, despite being in grad school, works exceptionally hard to keep up with their regimen. “It makes me feel extremely fulfilled that my kids followed my footsteps in my fitness.”
Over the years, Andrea has learned a lot about herself and recognizes that there are things more important than success. With age, she values a calm mindset and, as she says, she “doesn’t sweat the small stuff.”
“I take much better care of myself and make sure to spend quality time with my family and my friends,” she says. “Connection and being around those we love is so important, so don’t take anything for granted.”
No matter what, Andrea knows what true success is – surrounding yourself with people you care about and trust and doing what means the most to you.
Her best advice? “Life goes by way too fast! Slow down, breathe everything in. Don’t compare yourself to others, walk to the beat of your own drum, do things that make you happy, don’t fret about the little things and surround yourself with people that make you feel like sunshine.”
Photos by James Patrick