Mother, daughter, fitness lover, walking handstander - Jenea Smith is awesome and a strong woman in every sense. Learn more about her story below! Interested in nominating yourself or someone you know to be featured in our #StrongWomenEmpowerWomen blog series, reach out at firstname.lastname@example.org.
What’s your favorite motivational quote?
This is an easy one! My all-time favorite motivational quote is, “If it doesn’t challenge you, it doesn’t change you.” I love this quote because often times we shy away from things that are challenging or may not come easily to us because we’re afraid of failing. This quote reminds me that failure isn’t failure unless we choose to let it stop us. I try to see challenges as stepping stones…things that I will learn from and that will inspire me to be better and stronger.
Who inspires you in your life?
My mother is, by far, the most inspirational person I have ever met. She is a beautiful person, inside and out. My father passed away when I was 11 and my mother raised all 3 of us on her own- my sister was 8 and my brother was 5 years old. My brother has disabilities and my mother has always been a huge advocate and fighter for him. She is a person of strong faith and inspires everyone she meets. If I’m having a bad day, she always has the right words to cheer me up. She’s my biggest cheerleader and my best friend. She not only inspires me to be a better person spiritually, but has always instilled a love of health and fitness into all of us. My mom has always been into fitness; she was an aerobics instructor before I was born and her and my father owned a Martial Arts Studio while we were growing up. She is certified in Pilates and always finds the time in her busy schedule to squeeze in a workout- sometimes even joins me with mine! I am so blessed to have her as my mother.
What does strength mean to you?
Strength to me is not one-dimensional. Strength includes the physical, but also the mental and spiritual. To be strong is to be able to fight through the challenges in life, to be confident in who you are and who you want to be, and to constantly try to learn and better yourself. Yes, it’s fun to “lift heavy things,” but it’s just as equally important to lift your spirit and to have the ability to lift the spirit of those around you. My strength is rooted in my Faith and has anchored me through all of life’s challenges.
What’s a moment in your life when you felt strong?
I’ve had a few moments in my life when I have truly felt strong; however, none will ever compare to being in labor and having my daughter. Fighting through the pain and discomfort of contractions while on Pitocin was the hardest thing I’ve ever done (luckily I had my amazing husband there supporting me). As cheesy as it sounds, I just kept thinking that I had trained my whole life for that moment. All of the challenges I’ve faced that made me mentally stronger, all of the workouts I did that made me physically stronger…they all led to this moment of pushing through
for my little miracle baby. I was also instantly brought to the realization that the woman’s body is an amazing thing. I grew a human! And then I brought her into this world and loved and cared for her with my own body. That is strength!
What’s your preferred workout routine?
My preferred workout is HIIT-style workouts (High Intensity Interval Training). If you follow me on Instagram you’ll see my daily workouts posted! I discovered this type of format maybe 6 years ago and haven’t looked back since. It has completely transformed my body and has made me stronger than I ever was before. I enjoy playing around with basic moves and finding new ways to challenge myself. I LOVE burpees, squats, pushups, and planks… I mean, who doesn’t?! (Just kidding!). I write up my own workouts every day and I have never repeated a workout! Working out should be fun - sometimes it's just about finding what works for you.