We had the good fortune of connecting with Irina Ashtari and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Irina, what’s your definition for success?
My definition of success is to always move forward in spite of any obstacles and personal problems. And to do this consistently, daily and with love. For me, success is to be loyal to what you do. If what you choose to do in life is the highest expression of yourself, and you are helping the world, then what you do ought to be your own best friend and success story. And this is why, for me, success is to rely fully on your own self.
Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
The memorable, glossy, super images of me, and created by me, that you may come across, are genuine and a result of a long, arduous journey, a beloved routine, grind and devotion. I used to be the opposite of the radiant, fit, healthy woman we glimpse at the click of a button.
Through a number of circumstances, I used to be supremely unhealthy.
I was often fluctuating in weight to such an
extreme, that I would become very frail and unwell. All because I lacked the
proper knowledge and awareness of true health, as well as the support of a kindred mind who would be well-versed in wellness.
I was also just a young girl when I became a professional Skydiver and Skydive Instructor! I knew from my first jump, that I was born to do
this. But Skydiving wasn’t my fitness back then – it was only in the course of my thorough
education and self-realization many years later, that I learned the essentials
and the power of nutrition and fitness! Even long after I became athletic! I knew little of proper form and
exercises, stretching and meditation, the ins and outs of great nutrition and what it is to refuel our bodies and our minds.
Skydiving and the English language, nurtured in me the most powerful,
precious training for life and for becoming the greatest I can be: to stay in motion and to breathe when each is essential, as well as endurance, courage, devotion to routine, joy in small and
big achievements, respect, and beautiful communication with others.
One day, I threw myself headfirst into a challenge and adventure that really tested my limits! I pursued one of my
glorious dreams. I immediately began very intensive training for the NPC Bikini Fitness Championship.
And I won! And this is what gave me the inner power to fly forth in my career. And my 1st place statuettes are a symbolic reminder of this each day, and they also propelled my full-blown pursuit and
untraditional path of building my career in the health and fitness industry.
Currently, I’m pursuing my studies at the Neuro Leadership Institute and Brain-Based Coaching (BBC), in order to continue gaining more and more multifaceted knowledge and awareness, to pass on to the world.
I have also completed my NASM Youth Exercise Specialization. And I do it all for myself, my son, my family,
my beloved clients, and the world because my clients’ and the world’s success is my success.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
Here’s my magical itinerary of a lifetime, to experience the best time ever with my dearest human.
It truly covers the most fun, interesting, exciting people, places, things and… more importantly… surprises and discoveries… Ready? Hit it!
First, we’d hop in our car (I might even rent a convertible, for us to feel the ocean breeze! We live once!) and we’d voyage up the California coast. North north north!
We would drive from Los Angeles, on the legendary Pacific Coast Highway, through Malibu, toward Oxnard, and into the sweet, old Spanish town of Ventura.
On our way, we’d simply take in the breathtaking Pacific Ocean, the endless cliffs, make countless stops for tasty crabs, coffee, dessert and fresh Farmers Markets, little shops and boutiques.
In Oxnard, we’d pick up the famous, aromatic strawberries, fresh off the fields. And we’d keep driving North through the magical charming towns of Carpinteria and Summerland, visit the incredible Orchid Farm (and of course buy majestic orchids of our fave colors)!
From there, we’d travel to Santa Barbara, for more delicious world cuisine, fresh fruits from the Farmers Market, and live flamenco and jazz in cozy, European-style venues.
We’d see a stunning live show at the Granada Theater (like the philharmonic – the greatest…), and stop by the local museums and art exhibits. We’d stay in adorable seaside California inns (and maybe book some spontaneously :). We’d spend the day in Solvang, the magical Danish village, with pastries, coffee and of course a visit to the animal farms. And from there, we would drive through all the beautiful coastal towns of Central California, visiting the Hearst Castle, Morro Bay and Big Sur, spend a day or two in San Francisco (to experience a wild, beautiful city full of world cultures, from Little Italy to Little Tokyo… And even go on a night tour to Alcatraz!)
And our final destination will be… staying in a cabin in the breathtaking Yosemite National Park… experiencing this wonder of the world, meditating by the waterfalls and soaking up the miracles of our world…
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
I’d like to give a big shoutout to my son, who inspires and drives my success each day. And to my immense experience and organizations. Many psychology and literary books have moved me and I’ve read countless, all interconnecting. And I’d like to honor the NASM (The National Academy of Sports Medicine), from which I graduated. Prior to NASM, I was a professional competitive bodybuilder. These books, experiences, my clients, wonderful human beings along the way and organizations interconnected into a powerful ripple effect, that helped me realize myself fully, as I continue to grow always. Finally, I’d like to recognize my beloved, gifted English teacher-writer Zhenya Matt, who nurtured and helped me open my truest voice. We are a dream team and always grow and transform together, through English as a language of the world and the books we are writing ourselves.
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Maries Danila Dariya Dolgacheva