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Woman becomes first CrossFit trainer with cerebral palsy

Stephanie Hammerman continues to show the world that disabilities don't define people.
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Chiara O. Scuri, July 5, 2013 1:55:41 PM

Stephanie Hammerman was born into a life full of obstacles.

At three months premature, baby Stephanie lost a lot of oxygen and blood, a scenario that left her with cerebral palsy.

Cerebral palsy is a disorder that affects motor skills, movement and muscle tone, a condition that makes it difficult for those afflicted to walk, be active, and perform tasks that most of us take for granted.

Stephanie has lived this way all her life, but learned early not to define her.

“I’m one of 10 children, so all of my other brothers and sisters are completely able-bodied and growing up in that world there was no other way to live,” she told CNN.

Though she stayed active throughout her youth, Stephanie found herself packing a little extra weight in her freshman year of college. Unhappy with the way she looked – and felt – she cut out junk food and headed to the gym.

A friend’s death in 2005 sealed her motivation to get fit and healthy.

But as she writes in a first-person account, her thrice-weekly gym routine left much to be desired.

So she employed the services of a personal trainer and started doing CrossFit training, an incredibly intense core and conditioning program that uses various aerobic, body weight and even gymnastic exercises to whip people into prime shape.

Not only did Stephanie excel, she competed in a cycling marathon in 2011 and is now the world’s first certified CrossFit trainer with cerebral palsy.

“I’m determined to prove, not only to the world but to myself, that I’m good enough to do this,” she told the news network.

Job already done.


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