Us too. Welcome to The WellHouse Fit's monthly blog, Be In The GLOW. We are so excited to launch our studio blog and allow our friends, clients, and followers to engage with us, learn, and relate to us - because we are so much more than a boutique fitness studio. We are a community. A tribe that will support, share, love, lift up, and bring joy to any and all who want to follow us. We are a lifestyle. From sharing struggles and successes of life, motherhood, health, and fitness journey's, to finding the best SPF moisturizer, perfect color for your pout, and best holiday cocktails. Be In The GLOW is just that. The more you know and are enlightened, the more you will stay lit from within. Feel comforted by knowing that you are not alone and that you have something to look forward to. So here we go...Let's BE In The GLOW.
This month we're going to dive a little deeper and get to know the studio owner and instructor at The WellHouse Fit, Ashley Collicutt. Continue to read on to learn who "AC" is and how she became a small business owner.
Continue reading below, and also watch Ashley's welcome video:
Hey there shugs. I guess I'll dive straight on in and share who I am and what I'm trying to do and create with The WellHouse Fitness here in Greensboro, NC.
First to dive into myself personally. I turned 36 just recently... feel like a little kitten. I have been married to my husband and partner, Charlie or "Sir Charleslie" for going on...is it 11 or 12 years (I can never remember)?Charlie is my biggest supporter and cheerleader in life. He is extremely intelligent, cute, and witty. Being from Chapel Hill, it's only natural that he is a massive UNC Tar Heel fan.
I am a mother to three precious jewels, Conner 11, Pierce 7, and Big Bo 2. Three's a trip - Charlie and I are constantly outnumbered. Our youngest boy, Bo, is all boy, insane, and makes us feel like we have no clue what we are doing as parents. Conner is the epitome of a big protective brother. He has the heart of gold and truly is the kindest soul. Our daughter, Pierce is like that too. She's my mini me and totally loves life and never sees the negative. Oh and not to leave out our pups, "Holly Berry Golightly" and "Ramsey Roy Williams"; they're frequent inhabitants at the studio.
I grew up loving to dance, flipping, and exercising with Denise Austin - I just loved to move. Dancing was, and still is, my life - the movement, the music, and the artistry. Me and my younger sister's childhood was coated in far too many mistakes made by our parents - but I guess it's as the saying goes, "they were doing the best they could at that time." There were three things that saved me from all the turmoil, and that was my sister, our grandparents, and dance. I would play music that spoke to me, and move through my feelings, or pretend to be someone else without having to say one word. Dance provides a voice when a person cannot speak. It's the delicate edge of my soul. Both dancing and music will always be a huge part of my life and I am grateful for what it has done for me, to me, and taught me.
I have always been very in-tune with, and aware of, my body and what I could make it do. As I shared earlier, as a child I was obsessed with Denise Austin and the lady who did "Buns of Steele," I don't recall her name. I loved workout videos and fitness equipment. Not from an unhealthy place, it was never about trying to work for the perfect body. It was more about how it made me feel. For years, I would ask Santa for workout equipment. Not dolls, play kitchens, or a bike - like legit step aerobics, that slide skating thing where you put the booties over your shoes and slide side to side, or a Gazelle that that trainer guy with the pony tail had out, I think his name was Tony. I loved it ALL. I did get the step aerobics and the slider thing; I think the Gazelle was a bit too much. Trampolines were also my obsession. I loved bouncing as high as I could to do the perfect, magazine cover worthy, toe touch. And because I never had a lot of fear and knowing what my body could do, I taught myself how to flip all over. If I wanted my body to do something, I would work on it till I made it happen. And not to brag, but I was a beautiful dancer and excellent competitive cheerleader. I won national dance competitions. I made ALL-State and All-American in cheerleading. Yes, they do recognize cheerleading when giving that honor, and I stood right there with all of the other athletes. That also landed me on the cover of my hometown's news paper. So I'm major, ya'll.
When I turned 18, I totally thought I knew exactly what I was doing and where I was going...only to end up in a completely different place that, looking back on my path now, I am grateful for. I found myself not dancing on the streets of New York like I originally planned, but climbing up the corporate latter for a prestige cosmetic company. I spent nearly 15 years with this company, and my highest and last position I held was a territory manager and corporate trainer. I loved leading by example, motivating people on how to make positive growth, and making my sales goals - but mostly I truly loved helping people, particularly woman in feeling better. However, as much as I loved my job and the company I was with, I still felt empty. I had great achievements and was rewarded highly for my success, but it just wasn't what I wanted.
At 18 I had a bad back injury from a fall at cheerleading practice. I remember lying on the gym floor and for a brief moment, I couldn't feel my legs. One of the athletic coaches took his keys and ran them down my legs and I couldn't feel it. Just like Tom Hanks who screamed "there's no crying in baseball," there's sure as hell no crying from a stunting injury. So I just laid there, frantic, but silent for fear I would be called a "faker" or "drama queen," which I was called anyway. God, why are girls so mean to each other?!?! Anyways, my legs began to tingle and have feeling again. X-ray's showed that I "stunned" and "compressed" my lower spine, and off to physical therapy I went. It was there in therapy that I was introduced to Pilates. I freaking loved it! Thought it was the coolest thing ever.
At 29, the band, Sugarland had out a song "There's got to be something more" and it became my anthem. That song compiled with about a billion other reasons as to why I was so unhappy, forced me to act and I decided that I had to make the change. After announcing that I was leaving my stable paycheck, borrowed a cuss ton of money for my Pilates certification, Charlie did scrape his body off of the ground and supported me. I can't tell you in words how incredibly grateful I am for his support and for believing in me and in my dream.
I do love all forms of fitness, but Pilates is just the best. It truly is. It's also weird and misunderstood. I'll give you that. In this town, everywhere you look, there are yoga studios that are packed to the gills. I love that people have such a huge support for yoga and for our small businesses that are not big franchise chains. I'm also a little jealous of that popularity. How could I not be? It's almost like the homecoming queen verses the girl who will never be homecoming queen. You can't be mad at the girl who is though. You just keep learning and and try to become your best self. In a day where health and fitness is everything, and fitness content is blasted all over social media, I'm just trying to get a piece of the pie there too.
The WellHouse Fit is my dream. While I once thought that dream would be a dance studio, it's not too far off that path. This business truly is my life, and one that I thought I would never be fortunate enough to have. But I do and I'm going to fight like hell to keep it. When you walk into my social and fitness studio, you will see my family's involvement all around. From the wood planked walls that were from my big Papaw, to my ballet bars that my other grandfather made for me right before he passed away, and the dance floors that my husband, father-in-law, and grandfather laid down. You'll also see my kids who are often here because, like many working parents, Charlie and I are struggling to find the balance too. This business is everything to me.
Be In The Glow is an extension of The WellHouse Fit. From this blog, to our podcast, YouTube channel, and our Well+Fit+Social retreats - they're all a lifestyle and a part of me and myself. From the best parts of me to my biggest opportunities - I'm sharing it ALL. So come watch, read, follow, and listen and let's ALL be in the GLOW.