Thursday, March 17, 2011

Connections and Inspiration from an amazing woman - Susanne Navas

 I have been working away on both cleaning my house out in preparation for what I hope to be very exciting things AND working on recruiting volunteers for Rev3 Quassy.

Through the latter commitment I have been meeting people left and right, but only one in person. Susanne Navas lives in a neighboring town and I just had to talk about her here. I was tipped off to her presence by LJ from Rev3. Someone else within the Rev3 organization had met some representatives from the ACHIEVE kids tri program and suggested that we look into it here because there was an ACHIEVE chapter in the Waterbury area. I sent an email to a generic email address off their site and was directed to Susanne.

We exchanged an email and it seemed we had some things in common. She's a triathlete, mom and ambassador for a healthy lifestyle. I just knew I had to meet her. Who can't use a great training partner and friend?

This woman gets STUFF DONE! And she does it with grace!

Susanne is the head coach of the Waterbury Acheive kids tri program through the Waterbury YMCA (which I might add she spearheaded getting started in her community because she believes in it so much), she runs her own life, career and tri coaching business called Reboot through which she does and Active Women's Group, a Girls Program, group coaching and individual coaching. She is a driving force in her community to get people moving!

Susanne and I got together to talk about her involvement with Rev3 and because I am always looking to make great connections with other active women in my community.. or, er, surrounding communities. I had a very easy time of this in other communities I've been in, but it hasn't come as easy here. Don't get me wrong I have a great training partner that I love dearly, but I'm looking for a community of women to get together and inspire each other. Okay ... this is hard with the mommy gig I know!

I had no idea what to expect when meeting Susanne, but I was very excited. I've met a lot of women in the triathlon world... and most are fairly type A and it shows itself quickly. Susanne came in and she was very unassuming and while she was wearing an "I tri like a girl" shirt (which I believe she sells HERE. She does a little bit of everything doesn't she?) she had more of the yogini chill zen aura about her then the hard core triathlete kick ass and take names aura. I didn't instantly feel intimidated by her! (This is all good.) She listened to what I had to say and shared a lot of things about her life, but not in a boastful manner... just in a 'this is my life' manner.

I walked away from our little meeting so inspired by the fact that she sees something that she thinks is cool and worthwhile and she goes home and DOES IT. MAKES it happen in her community. This is how she got started with Acheive. She saw it in the back of a magazine on her way back from Ironman Cozumel (yea she's an ironman too) and when she got home she made it happen. She jumped any and all hurdles (to include getting USAT certified) to bring that program to her community. This just kicks ass if you ask me. I would have though oh what a great program. Looked to see if there was a chapter locally that I could volunteer with and when I discovered that there wasn't I would have been bummed and moved on. I would never have dreamed that little ol' me could get that kind of thing going. Not Susanne man she picked up that phone and made it happen. I'm so in awe of that. And in awe of her nature. I mean if you just met her you never would guess all that is behind her! She's unassuming! Not all "look at me I'm a total bad ass that gets so much stuff done". She's a pillar in her community without being boastful about it.

Her latest thing (which she again discovered in a magazine) is to do a Walking Bus ... basically she's going to be meeting kids (with the help of other adult chaperons) at the local Starbucks to walk to school instead of riding the bus. A subtle way to bring activity to the community and accentuate the need for more sidewalks to facilitate a more active life style.

On top of this she emailed me to see if Rev3 would be interested in donating some t-shirts for the kids to wear during these walks - which will go on the entire month of April. Always thinking about helping her community. WoW!

When I asked her how she mobilize people in such an amazing way her response again was very humble. "I never really thought about it.  I guess I just live my life, & always try to have fun & be thankful."

She's a starter and a doer this one. And a keeper. I can't wait to spend more time with Susanne. I hope to be involved in what she's got going on... because I'm mostly a doer not so much a starter.

Check her out and be inspired to be the best YOU can be and to start doing things in your own community.

Are you a starter or a doer? Do you know a 'Susanne' in your community? What can you do to instill a more active and healthful lifestyle in your own community? It starts with us people!

1 comment:

  1. Laura - I echo every single thing you said about Susanne. I've known her for nearly 20 years, and have watched her repeatedly do exactly what you say. She is a Starter. And she keeps things going. She is selfless and humble. And she is a wonderful friend, mother, and wife. I'm glad you two have connected. I feel blessed by her in my life.