Colleen Moss
Owner / Founder

Welcome to My Journey...

Here's the Short Story...

Like many career professionals, I was unfulfilled and decided to pursue something I'm absolutely passionate about.

So, after retiring from Federal Law Enforcement I decide to go back to my original love - "fitness." And, four years ago I founded Thrive Yoga & Fitness.


The Early Years...

I was a competitive gymnast at age 5 (going to the junior Olympics twice) before a meniscus tear ended that chapter of my early life.

So, I dove into several other sports and activities, including competitive cheerleading, martial arts, horseback riding, swimming, diving. You name it, I likely tried it.

Later, I jumped into coaching gymnastics, then running cheer camps at the YMCA.

While there, I earned my Lifeguard as well as Swim Instructor Certifications and started working as a lifeguard, swim instructor and diving instructor at my local YMCA. I LOVED IT!


Then, College...

When I went to college at Slippery Rock University, I thought I wanted to run a gym - in fact, that goal is even mentioned in my high school yearbook!

So, I pursued the curriculum and earned a Bachelor of Science in Allied Health - Community Health Practices.

I really enjoyed all my science classes. It's the challenge of figuring out what everything does in our bodies and what the likely cause of an illness is. To me, it was, and still is super fascinating.


The First Career

But, you know - it was the 80's and women just didn't own businesses - definitely not gyms. So, I decided to enter graduate school to earn my Master of Arts in Counseling.

Upon graduation I spent the next six years at various colleges and universities in the "Residence Life Departments."

This professional position required me to run operations at residence halls and serve as a supervisor for resident advisors, hall directors, maintenance staff. As a counselor, my role also required me to deal with crisis intervention along with the typical weekend - “who did that” mischief in the buildings.


Listening to My Inner Self

If you haven't noticed yet, there's a common theme in all of my interests.

The more I became aware of my own real interests, the more I realized how much I enjoyed figuring out what and how things happen.

✅ What happened that caused the illness/injury?

What was the best way to teach someone how to swim?

✅ How to perform a forward roll?

✅ How can I explain it differently so the next kid understands, too?

✅ Who really did break the shower head in the mens bathroom on the 2nd floor last weekend?


Nancy, Me and the Hardy Boys...

I guess my love of Nancy Drew and Hardy Boys stories stayed with me!

When I finally realized solving the mystery was what I really liked in all of my roles, I decided maybe law enforcement would be a cool place for me - physical fitness and solving who-done-its! Perfect!

I applied to the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

I figured if I was going to switch paths, why not start at the top? I was lucky enough (after 22 months of application process) to land at Quantico.


The First Assignment with the FBI

My first office was the Baltimore Field Office, where I worked on what became Cyber Crimes (child pornography/exploitation, internet fraud, computer intrusions).

All of this meant I was sitting a LOT more than I was working out.

Although I did become a Defensive Tactics Instructor (of course) - and continued to teach and work with other women who needed help to pass the yearly "fitness-for-duty" test.


Work and Family

It was during this time that I met and married my husband. We had two awesome children and were eventually transferred to the Charlotte Division, where we both continued to work our respective areas of expertise.

I took on more administrative responsibilities and ended up with more paperwork and even less fitness time.

All of these administrative duties resulted in me not moving. Instead, I was sitting - being physically inactive.

I sat at a desk or in a meeting.

I sat on the bleachers at the kids baseball games.

And, often I sat in my car driving for 10+ hours a day.


It Got Worse

Over the course of 15 years, I was physically active for only 30-minutes, three or four times a week - walking or lifting and not paying much attention to my nutrition choices.

What happened?

As a result of my sedentary lifestyle, I ended up with high blood pressure, blood clots and three strokes.

Yes... my body was trying to tell me something. And, it finally got through to my brain that I needed to make some serious changes!


What to Do About This!

I wanted to live healthier and have the energy to go to sporting events with the kids, heck - take the dogs for long walks.

How embarrassing. I was in law enforcement. I earned a BS degree in Allied Health. I absolutely knew how important it is to move and stay fit.

What was I doing to myself..?

I decided to make my health and fitness a priority (instead of everything else first).


Return to the Gym

My first step was to join a health club.

But, what I quickly discovered was neither the classes nor instructors could provide the information, technique or protocol that would work for me.

I had issues like hips and knees that could no longer take the pounding of popular exercises. And there were other issues that needed to be addressed, as well.

But when I asked about modifications - the answer was almost always, "If you can't do it just skip it."


Why Pay for This?

OK, confession time...

I am a fairly extreme “Type A” person.

It seem that competition is genetically hardwired into me (remember, competitive gymnast at age 5).

“Skip it” is not in my vocabulary, so, I would just do the exercises.

Needless to say, I ended up so sore I couldn't work out again for days.

Sometimes, my body hurt so badly I couldn't go back for weeks.
And, to make matters worse, my health and fitness was not improving.

The only thing that went up a few levels was my frustration!

Why was I paying for this?


Good Advice

My husband finally suggested I go back to yoga - a movement activity I had enjoyed most of my life -- without injury!

Most yoga instructors know how to modify and make changes to poses for anyone who needs it.

I loved it - again!

Since you've read this far... it's probably no surprise to you that I studied and became a Registered Yoga Teacher and earned my (RYT) 200 certification.

This felt like "home" to me - and I started teaching part time.

Then, upon retirement, I started teaching at several different studios with different clients and yoga styles.



During this life-altering period I studied online to earn my RYT-500 Certification as well as certifications in Mat Pilates, Barre Fitness, and Group Fitness. (Did I mention I am a bit of a Type A?)

I realized helping others find their way back to fitness was my "calling!"

Even for those who'd convinced themselves they couldn't do it... I knew I could show them the way.

Plus, no other gym seemed to care about anyone who wasn't already “in shape” when they walked into a gym.

And THAT is how Thrive Yoga & Fitness was born.


The Outcome of My Journey

Everyone likes a happy ending so I'm happy to report the following:

✅ I ended up losing 30 pounds from my stroke days.
✅ I no longer have pain walking up and down the stairs.
✅ I'm injury free and feel GREAT!

But, it's not really over.

My journey, now, is to help others who were consumed with "life," regain their health and actually feel better than they ever thought possible.


Would You Like to Start Your Own Journey?

Perhaps you've been thinking about making some changes in YOUR life.

You can achieve it - just by adding just a little more movement to your daily activities.

Notice I did not say by working out 7-days a week -- or to exhaustion.

The key to health is small steps in the direction you want to go.

And, having a smart plan to get you there.

Trust me - I lived it - and walked in those shoes.

I want you to be here with me - enjoying the life you want now.

Walking, hiking, traveling, spending time with your kids and grandkids (granddogs) the way you want.

Not worried about losing your independence or your next doctor's appointment.

If you're ready to make some changes in your life, let's talk.

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