From crossfit guru to weightlifting yogi, Bloom Farms CBD community member Natalie Davis lives and breathes health and wellness culture. The Bay Area-born, Denver-based athlete possesses quite the impressive fitness resume as a seasoned CrossFitter, USA weightlifting member and certified yoga instructor. Now Natalie takes great pride in helping others feel good from the inside out, one exercise at a time.
“I think people should find the path that makes them feel good. Health isn’t just about what your body looks like. It’s how you feel on the inside and out,” Natalie says. “Get as much sleep as you can, drink as much water as you can, and, as cliché as it sounds, have fun! It’s all about balance, specifically between strength and flexibility.”
We chatted with Natalie to learn more about her fitness regimen and to hear her tips for maintaining total mind and body wellness.
How did you make your entrance into the fitness world?
I started doing CrossFit in my late 20s while living in Seattle. I was looking to join a community and definitely found that in CrossFit. After a couple years, I realized I would never be competitive because I’m so tiny, so I moved into weightlifting and stayed because I never had to do cardio.
Why did you make the jump from CrossFit and weightlifting to yoga?
I always had mobility issues but didn’t realize it because I was never very active. I think CrossFit made my mobility worse, because I was only focusing on strength. My muscles were growing, but I wasn’t doing anything to keep myself limber. I started doing yoga and I fell in LOVE. Yoga helped my mobility by showing me different ways my body can move and different ways I could stretch. I got my first yoga teacher training within two years of starting, my second teacher training two years after that, then a yoga mentorship when I got to New York.
What inspired you to become a certified yoga teacher?
Surprisingly, I love the spiritual aspect of yoga more than the asana [postures] : to be kind instead of nice, to be ambitious but also content, and most importantly, to not have expectations of myself or others. It’s really freed my mindset.
I originally got my certification because I was going through a rough breakup and was trying to find myself. The second certification was to become a teacher, and the mentorship was to find a community while I was new to New York City.
What positive mind and body changes did you experience throughout your journey?
I have become more focused and goal-oriented but also more accepting of myself and my physical and mental limitations. I spent my teens and early 20s partying a lot, but fitness gave me a higher purpose. I would rather spend a Saturday or Sunday morning getting in a hard workout than going out on a Friday or Saturday night and being hungover the rest of the weekend.
Any advice for anyone looking to deepen their fitness practice?
Find a good coach or teacher. In both weightlifting and yoga, safety always comes first. Find a gym or studio that emphasizes safety over cool postures or heavy weight. Every gym and studio has its own vibe. Take your time to find that one that fits yours.
How have you been staying active while at home?
I have been really gentle with myself. Before quarantine, I would work out five to seven times a week, but right now, I’m just not feeling it. It took a while to stop beating myself up about wanting to sit on the couch and watch TV or for eating that extra piece of chocolate. I know that a couple months of leisure won’t derail me forever. I know that my discipline is strong enough to get me back on track once everything is open again. I’ve also kept my drinking to a minimum which keeps my head clear and my goals in sight.
What has your wellness journey taught you about yourself?
My personal goals and wellness are more important than trying to make other people happy. I learned how to say no to going out and partying, because I would rather get a full night’s sleep and wake up feeling fresh and strong. I thought I would lose a lot of friends along the way, but they’ve all been so supportive.
What do you love most about helping others achieve their fitness goals?
I like connecting with people and building lasting relationships. Yoga becomes so personal so quickly. You truly bond with people.
You also enjoy CBD as part of your wellness practice. When did you first try CBD?
I started using CBD when I was in New York. I had gone on a trip to Vietnam and my sleep schedule was wonked out. When I started taking CBD, I was finally able to sleep through the night. Since then, I’ve been able to train myself to sleep 10 hours a night! As a true morning person, it took a long time to get there, but my body is grateful for the recovery.
Which Bloom Farms products are your favorite?
And lastly, when you aren't in the gym, what else do you enjoy?
I have a 14-year-old dog and about 40 plants that I hang out with. I also love love love cooking. I’m very excited for quarantine to lift so I can start cooking for others again!
Born and raised by the beach in Southern California, Valeri Spiwak lives and breathes West Coast culture and its surrounding artistic charm. Valeri, with a Bachelors Degree in Journalism and a Minor in French, continuously seeks to explore the beautiful and obscure, and shares her adventures through captivating wordplay, clever writing and skillful copy.