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COMMIT TO GET FIT WITH CELEB TRAINER CARI SHOEMATE
IN A CITY BRIMMING WITH PERSONAL TRAINERS AND EXERCISE GURUS, CARI SHOEMATE HAS RISEN TO BE THE CRÈME DE LA CRÈME. While it’s possible to attribute her celeb status to her ability to do over 100 pushups and sprint at speeds upwards of 15 miles per hour, her success is more likely due to understanding where her clients (who range from athletes and celebs to your average Joe Shmo) come from. After all, Cari knows what it’s like to struggle to stay fit. She’s done the corporate job. She’s gained the weight, felt the stress and knows how overwhelming it can be to get in (or stay in) shape. With a deep appreciation of her clients’ needs and a training style that’s “kinda like a blonde, friendly version of Jillian Michaels,” who better to help you shed that spare tire? Cari is a certified personal trainer, yoga teacher, group fitness instructor, trainer for the Houston Rockets Power Dancers, a regular on Houston’s Fox Morning News, and now the newest face (and Texas’ only face!) of Exercise TV. Cari started her career in commercial real estate. Too much travel and too little activity led her to gain weight and lose her sanity. Always wanting to return to fitness, her first love, she eventually told the nine-to-five to take a hike and focused her energy on becoming a full-time personal trainer. Today, as the new face of Exercise TV (where she rubs abs with the likes of Jillian Michaels and Billy Blanks) and hot off the release of her workout DVD, “Long, Lean Legs,” it was definitely the best decision she’s ever made. With a slew of diet programs, bizarre exercise equipment and trendy weight-loss scams, it’s so easy to feel overwhelmed when starting a fitness regime. Cari sympathizes with how difficult this can be and advises clients to just “keep it simple.” When it comes to buying healthy food she says, “Stick to fruits, veggies and meat – things you can recognize. If you look at the label and you can’t pronounce it, don’t buy it.” Similarly, when it comes to exercise her philosophy is: “Just keep it simple. Go for a walk, go for a run, do some pushups, or squats – the old school stuff works the best. A hard workout + good food = results.” A die-hard Houstonian, Cari believes our city gets a bad rap. “If you’re out and about on a Saturday morning, it’s clear how active our city truly is.” It’s true that Houston does have a lot of delicious restaurants (even Cari admits to loving egg kolaches once in awhile, although only the whole wheat ones!) but she does not believe we are bigger or fatter than any other U.S. city. In fact she thinks with our abundance of beautiful parks, running clubs, biking clubs and plethora of outdoor spaces, we set a great example.
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According to Cari, “Working out in the [Houston] heat is not a bad thing.” Sweating away in ninety-plus degrees, we’re all guilty of throwing in the exercise towel on a day (or three) during the Houston summer because “it’s just too darn hot!” The number one thing she urges Houstonians to do when exercising in the brutal summer sun is to hydrate. “Not just the thirty minutes before you work out, but all day, every day.” She advises drinking water the day before you exercise, during your workout and after. Even if you’re just going out for a quick 30-minute run, bring water with you, don’t just drink it before and after. She also recommends dropping the intensity a notch or two when sweatin’ it in the summer heat. Higher temperatures elevate our heat rate and put more stress on our body, but also help to burn calories faster. When it comes to getting in shape, Cari believes “the biggest motivator is you.” When her clients see results that they make happen, not necessarily weight loss, although it might be losing one or two pounds, but realize I am stronger. I can do 20 pushups instead of ten – that’s what motivates them to stick with it. Fitness to Cari is so much more than just looking good. To her, fitness is health, wellness and the ability to take charge of your life. It’s her passion – and she knows her stuff. The only thing better than having a trainer with skills, enthusiasm, not to mention legs, as great as Cari is having one who’s been there, who can relate to you and who loves the city you love. “I love Houston and will always be connected to the city because of my family, friends and experiences. My heart is here.” For more information, exercise tips, recipes and workout videos, check out Cari on www.cari-fit.com and www.exercisetv.com.
By Shyla Batliwalla Photography by Jill Hunter Hair: Sarah Al-Adwani Makeup by Edward Sanchez Black Dress by Prada, from Neiman Marcus Shoes by Fendi Houston
Health + Fitness Issue