Getting Functionally Fit

Summer Lawton trains clients from 14 to 91

By Summer Lawton
FIT, Inc.

What business are you in? Individual and small-group fitness and nutrition coaching for people who don’t know where to begin, all the way to triathletes seeking to take their fitness a step further. Fitness and nutrition go hand-in-hand. When people want to change their lives, they have to change their ways of eating and start exercising.

I use different types of equipment: free weights, stability balls, medicine and bosu balls, resistance tubing and kettle bells. I choose theese types of equipment because it’s a more functional approach to fitness. Rather than using a machine to isolate a muscle group, these items exercise more muscle groups.

My job is to inspire people to live healthier and happier lives, and that means being able to function in the world more quickly. For example, getting on and off the couch, that’d be a squat. So it’s getting you stronger to live your life whether you’re sitting at a computer or training to do an Ironman – it’s functional fitness.

How did you get started in this business? I started teaching mother-and-baby fitness after the birth of my first child. I wanted to lose weight, earn money and spend time with my child. I did that until my second child outgrew the stroller. I wanted to continue in the fitness world because I am so passionate about it, so I became certified as a personal trainer and began working at Gold’s Gym on Oahu. I found out I was very successful at it, so I started my own business.

I found a niche, going into people’s homes.

I brought my business to the North Shore of Kauai – I grew up here – and have been blessed to have a wonderful clientele ranging in age from 14 through 91. I plan to have my own space soon, where people can come to me.

Lawton offers a mobile personal training sevice

What sets your business apart? A personalized and customized approach so that each person gets an exercise and nutrition plan that will work in their lives. Everybody has different goals and schedules. When you walk through the door, I want to make it work for you.

I still train individuals, but also have small group classes limited to five or fewer people so it will be cost effective for everyone. It’s still be a personalized and customized approach.

Why do you do what you do? What motivates you to get up and go to work? I’ve been athletic my whole life, and I think after gaining weight with my first pregnancy and having to lose that weight, I realized I didn’t feel so good with extra weight. I felt inspired that I could help others make those changes as well.

Do you have a motto, or philosophy for doing business? I strive to inspire and motivate people to live happy and healthier lives and to live longer lives, as well. My clients motivate and inspire me – I feel it’s very circular. When they start making changes and say, for example, “I ran a 5K race for the first time!” they motivate and inspire me.

What’s the most challenging aspect of your business? Motivating people to change the way they eat. “Eat the simple and the local way” would be my motto.

If you weren’t doing this, what would you be doing? There is nothing else I’d rather do. This is it for me.

Summer Lawton, FIT, Inc., 635-7668,

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