The JessicaSimien.com “She’s A Boss” series is all about women in leadership positions. Women are not celebrated enough for their amazing and one-of-a-kind accomplishments. We’re using our platform to shine light on some very talented and intelligent ladies working toward (and realizing) their dreams. Not only will you have an opportunity to learn about them, you will also get to learn from them as they share their business advice and pointers on how to maintain balance.
Women are no longer in the shadows of men and only fulfilling domestic roles in the house. It’s a new millennium and women are breaking every mold and all the boundaries. Women are now CEOs and entrepreneurs and for this week’s She’s A Boss feature we’re highlighting fitness trainer, C L Wright of Cardiolistics, LLC. Check out our inspiring and motivating chat with her below.
JESSICASIMIEN.COM: What inspires you to dance?
C Y Wright: My need for expression inspires me to dance. I’ve always felt the need to be expressive and understood. It’s as though there’s something inside of me that I’m trying to convey and show the world. There are times when I feel opposite. I don’t always feel a part of the world, so I formulate my own world to exist and evolve in, its how I develop and grow. Dancing and teaching dance has given me the most fulfillment out of life thus far.
JESSICASIMIEN.COM: How do you feel about the new dance show, Bring It, featuring our very own Diana Williams and the Dancing Dolls?
CW: I think it’s awesome! I think it’s long overdue! I’m so glad that people are finally getting a chance to be knowledgeable on a genre outside of the norm. I feel it highlights the talent that lives within the south and this genre of dance will one day add to the legacy of our Black history and I feel that Diana will be one of the people leaving a mark not only in black history, but in women and in dance. There are so many things to say about the TV show, about the dance line, about the perception of it, and about Diana as an instructor. All of these things are thriving and positive. It’s just magnificent and a long awaited blessing.
JESSICASIMIEN.COM: Living and being from a small city, what gives you the motivation to keep dancing?
CW: I don’t require motivation to continue dancing. I don’t have a choice! Dance is something that enters you and won’t be suppressed. Being from a small city only limits the touch of your extremities. It doesn’t inhibit you from physically dancing. An audience isn’t always required to be received. It becomes something personal that you love and you just…dance!
JESSICASIMIEN.COM: Can someone who doesn’t technically know how to dance be taught? Or is it just a natural skill that you learned?
CW: Yes, you can be taught to dance! I can teach ANYONE to dance – doesn’t matter their circumstance. What’s natural about it is being able to catch the change in rhythms and beats. Some people have a musical ear. I picked up reading music and playing instruments at a young age so that became natural to me. But even natural talents have to be nurtured through practice. The most important word in dance is practice!
JESSICASIMIEN.COM: Do you have a diet regimen that you follow?
CW: I don’t eat beef or pork. I don’t eat fried food unless I’m on a break. I’m on a very consistent vitamin regimen, I take seven different vitamins daily. I must have two servings of fruit daily. I don’t eat much meat. When I do, it’s mostly seafood. I don’t eat many meals; I’m a snacker or what I call a ‘piece eater’. A piece of this or that. Or just a sandwich, or just a side, or just a veggie. Though I love cooking, I don’t have a huge appetite! I eat when I’m hungry. I do have a kryptonite weakness for sweets, but moderation is the key.
JESSICASIMIEN.COM: How old were you when you realized… “Wow I can dance” not just having rhythm but actually having the ability to memorize choreograph and reiterate it on the dance floor?
CW: It’s really funny how I began to realize I could dance. I didn’t watch many cartoons or kid shows, I loved to watch my mom’s aerobics tapes! I’d do Jane Fonda workout VHS (yes VHS) tapes everyday thinking or feeling like I was dancing! I loved it! I was about 5 or 6 years old. Then I’d watch musicals or videos and see choreography and immediately remember it. I knew every Michael or Janet Jackson video. I knew ‘Flash Dance,’ ‘Grease,’ ‘The Wiz,’ ‘Dirty Dancing’… It wasn’t until my mom took me to a parade of school bands that used to be in Metrocenter Mall that I came to know of majorette dance. I saw The Tigerettes of Jim Hill High School and lost it! I was about 8 or 9. As soon as I hit middle school I auditioned for the drill team and made it in middle school, high school, and college. I STILL remember the dance from ALL of them. I will forget your name, where I put my car keys, and even my next thought! But I won’t forget choreography.
JESSICASIMIEN.COM: What’s your daily exercise routine and for how long?
CW: Before I injured my back I ran two miles a day, five days a week along with tone and strength exercises that usually last about 30 minutes to an hour if I can make myself stop. I tend to get in a zone and over work because it’s so fun to me. I really love working out. I’m just about done with my recovery from my back injury and I did gain some weight. But I’m hoping to be back on my normal workout regimen by May of this year.
JESSICASIMIEN.COM: Where is your venue located? How long are your sessions?
CW: Cardiolistics Dance, Aerobics, and Personal Training, LLC is located in the Odyssey Shopping Center at 731 S. Pear Orchard Rd. Suite 39 in Ridgeland, MS 39157 (to the left of McAlister’s). All aerobic and dance classes are about an hour long and personal training sessions are 45 minutes to an hour long. The contact is 601-207-2112 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
JESSICASIMIEN.COM: You are a woman entrepreneur in a field predominately dominated by men. What gave you the inspiration to turn your love for fitness and dance into a full-fledged business?
CW: I realized that I wanted a business when I knew it was possible to love what you do for a living. I’d been trying to figure out what drives me. What could I do every day with a smile? I’ve had so many jobs on that search its crazy! I knew I loved to dance. I knew I loved to workout. What I didn’t know was if there were licenses to obtain in order to do so professionally. I learned that while looking for other jobs. I saw an opening for aerobics instructor. I read the qualifications and went to the internet to figure out “HOW do I get those certifications?”
I got all my certifications, finished school up to my Masters and in that process I’d developed so many things I wanted to try. I thought no one is going to let me really let loose and try the craziness in my cranium, why not go all the way and open your own place? Who knew it would take 10 years to finally be true? I didn’t think of the comparisons to men and women or even the notion of being an entrepreneur, I just wanted to be happy when working and to get something right. I wanted to feel efficient and fluent and know that my schooling had purpose. I set out to have my future be better than my past. I began to learn how to want, I didn’t really know what wanting something meant. All of the many things that were telling me no or that I couldn’t get past where I’d been, had minor meaning. I wanted to show that bad journeys can have great destinations and that I had the power to be happy.