Holly Ashby


Holly Ashby

holly ashby 2Hometown: Durham
Age: 40
Occupation: Financial Advisor and Complex Manager

When did you first start Strength & Conditioningting? 2007 briefly, then back in January 2014

What is your favorite movement? Favorite workout?
Back squats and hill sprints (for anyone that knows me they’ll be shocked).

What is your least favorite movement? Least favorite workout?
BURPEES! and anything that has a 400M run or longer

Tell us about your sports & fitness background:
I broke my leg and had a subsequent hip disease when I was 1 1/2. At 3 they put me in casts an told my parents I’d never run or play sports and needed surgery. My dad said no to surgery and decided to wait until more advances were made with hip replacements. During that 18 year “wait” until my first surgery, I played softball from little league on and then fell in love with volleyball once I reached 7th grade and played it through school.  Through playing sports I realized I never had to have a regimented (or boring as I refer to it) workout. I was always playing a game, even when practicing.

How did you first get exposed to Strength & Conditioning? Do you remember your first WOD? How did it go?holly ashby 1
I first went to a Bootcamp in 2007 and after I got over the initial first week where I couldn’t squat or bend for anything, I loved it. I really can’t remember why I stopped going, but my then 17 year old daughter asked for me to do Bootcamp with her for Christmas in 2013. We started that January of 2014 and I quickly remembered what I loved about Strength & Conditioning and how much I had missed it. Over the next few months I made many friends, both athletes and coaches, and it kept me coming back.

My first WOD was a benchmark of squats, push-ups and who knows what. I just remember thinking “Dang, I’m out of shape.”

What sort of changes have you seen in your body, health and fitness since starting Strength & Conditioning? (before/after)
I ruptured my hamstring in June of 2015 and had to have it put back together. This put an immediate halt on my progress with Strength & Conditioning and every other sport I play. Needless to say, I was down…very down.

In January of this year I came back and started the saga of trying to stretch my new hamstring and not kill my other hip (the bad one) in the process. I started eating completely different than I had been before my injury and suddenly after a few months my metabolism did a complete 180. Dave told me I needed to start eating because I had lost so much weight and I happily was able to tell him I am eating much more now than I was before!

What impact has Strength & Conditioning had on your life?
Strength & Conditioning has impacted every facet of my life. I feel so much better about myself knowing that I’ve worked so hard every day. I have so much more energy and feel so much stronger. I was playing a softball tournament the other day and my coach told my husband that as the pitcher, I should be the most tired out there (we were on game 7 all in the same hot day) but somehow I seemed the most refreshed and energized. Jim quickly told him he could thank Strength & Conditioning for that.

What is your favorite Strength & Conditioning/CFD moment?
It would have to be the Strength & Conditioning Open. Barely released from my surgeon, I was talked into the 2016 Open. I stepped into the roped off area scared to death. I think I probably let the entire place go in front of me in line. As Coach Cindy sat there counting for me, seeing/hearing the genuine confidence that she had in me, and then realizing there were people I didn’t even know that were cheering me on turned my entire mindset around for what I thought I could or couldn’t do. There were so many moments with my team during the Open that I can’t list them all, but that month would definitely make up my top Strength & Conditioning moments.

holly ashby 3What is your advice for people just getting started or thinking about starting Strength & Conditioning?
Don’t listen to what the rest of the world “thinks” they know about Strength & Conditioning. I get so tired of hearing people’s comments about people pushing their bodies too far as soon as they hear I do Strength & Conditioning.

Don’t get hung up with how much weight the person beside you has on their bar. Don’t let it intimidate you…just get out there and try it! I’m far from your traditional Strength & Conditioning athlete. I don’t focus on the weight as much as trying to learn the technique/skill and bringing my body back to as close to 100% as it will ever be.

What are your hobbies, interests, and/or talents outside of Strength & Conditioning?
I play way too much softball and love coaching Special Olympics. I also lead a financial team with my church and work with Rice and Beans Ministries in Costa Rica.