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Christine Conti, AKA Wonder Woman, is an international fitness presenter and trainer as well as the CEO of Conti Fitness & Wellness LLC. Christine—a former all-American collegiate athlete, investment banker, high school teacher, and coach—has over 20 years of experience teaching and presenting in the health and fitness industry. In Christine’s spare time, she is also the area fitness director for Orangetheory Fitness studios at the Jersey Shore, where she resides with her husband and two young children.
And if you didn’t think she was busy enough, Christine also finds great joy as the owner and co-host of the world-renowned podcast, Two Fit Crazies & a Microphone. Here, listeners will hear inspiring stories from the best in fitness, nutrition, endurance racing, and more.
Christine’s ability to embrace her experiences overcoming abuse, addiction, and depression ultimately lead her to create and implement empowering and inspirational workshops and motivational speaking events for people around the world. Christine’s mission in life is to inspire all she meets with her “YES YOU CAN” attitude. Since undergoing two separate rounds of chemotherapy for her advanced autoimmune disease 8 years ago, Christine has completed over 30 marathons, 3 triathlons, and an IRONMAN…and this is just the beginning! Her mantra, “One day I will not be able to do this, but today is NOT that day” is something that she truly believes!
YES! YOU! CAN!
Tom O’Reilly is a husband, father, ultra runner, musician, and a cancer survivor. In February of 2019 he was diagnosed with an aggressive brain tumor known as a Glioblastoma. Like many cancer patients, this diagnosis seemingly came out of nowhere, especially when considering there was no history of cancer on either side of his family. After the initial flood of emotion subsided, quick action was taken and two days after the diagnosis Tom was in the operating room undergoing brain surgery to remove the tumor. It was decided that the surgeon would remove as much of the tumor as possible without causing permanent damage to the motor function on the left side of his body. Thankfully the surgeon was able to remove almost 70% of the tumor, with the remainder to be treated with a combination of chemotherapy and radiation.
Tom came through the surgery and woke up with his same upbeat, positive, and caring personality, remembering names of all his doctors, nurses, anesthesiologists, and of course family and friends. Of course he did. All smiles all around! As a result of the surgery he temporarily lost total functionality on the left side of his body. It was explained that this was expected as a result of the surgery, and that normal use would return in time with the help of Physical and Occupational Therapies. After a week of recovery in the hospital, Tom spent 4 weeks at an Inpatient rehabilitation facility and treated it like summer camp! Eat, sleep, and work out for 3 hours a day?? Yes please!! Tom soon became the poster boy for the facility and maximized every possible opportunity on his journey back to ‘normalcy’. He would often hoot and holler during therapy and get a few of the patients to kick it up a notch. Always pushing and trying to get better every day, he was happy to pull, drag, and carry anyone that needed help.
Tom had rolled into Inpatient Rehabilitation in a wheelchair and 4 weeks later was able to walk out of the facility with only the aid of a cane. Hard work and determination pays off! Tom is still undergoing Outpatient therapy twice a week to regain full functionality on his left side. He returned to work full time in September 2019 and no longer needs to use a cane! Progress, always! Tom has lofty goals for 2020 and there is much work to be done. He likes to say, “the only things I can control are my attitude and my work rate!” How positive can you be and how hard are you willing to work to achieve your goals!
Just Keep Going… Keep F’ing Going!!
Elaine Acosta, known as Ninja, is a graphic designer, ultra runner, pacer, globetrotter & caregiver to her husband, Tom O’Reilly, aka Dragon. Roughly a month before Tom’s 50th birthday, their perfect world turned upside down when he was diagnosed with Glioblastoma/Stage 4 brain cancer (see Tom’s bio). Just like running, their journey has been a roller coaster of highs and lows, with a new “normal” every few weeks. Cancer can overtake your life and drain you emotionally and physically, but life is like a marathon! We have to endure. We have to remain positive and confident. We have to focus on the goal and keep moving forward with the “no quit” attitude.
Elaine knows all about challenges and chasing the runner’s high. She has participated in 300+ races, ranging in distances from 800 meters to 120 miles. Combined with her love for traveling, she has tested her endurance around the world, from Texas to Thailand. She has competed in 24 states and 13 countries. She paces full and half marathons on a weekly basis during the spring and fall seasons and incorporates those training miles to race ultras, mostly on mountains.
Pacing allows Elaine to give back to the community she loves so much. Her energy is infections. She inspires and motivates. She’s that little voice in your head that talks you out of quitting when things get rough. She reminds you that you are stronger than you think you are and encourages you to celebrate little victories. All mantra’s that also apply to life.
Everyone has obstacles to face and setbacks to overcome. How you choose to take on the situation is key. It become a true test of inner strength. Elaine & Tom’s life-changing event is the biggest race of their lives and they plan on beating the odds, mile by mile. Every day they show how capable they are of difficult things. Relentless forward motion.
#TeamDragon will run towards the finish line and #KFG to gain victory.