My name is Elizabeth Douge and I am from Southern California. I graduated from the University of Southern California (USC), where I obtained my Bachelor of Arts Degree in Sociology. I received my Master of Arts Degree in Education from Pointloma Nazarene University, as well as my Certificate in Educational Therapy from the University of California at Riverside. I am an Educational Therapist, as well as an Elementary School Resource Teacher. All of my life, I knew that God had called me to help others, as well as to make a positive impact on society. Through working with struggling learners, I felt that education was the way to “level the playing field” for marginalized groups. Nevertheless, over the years, I realize that there is more to life than just education (as important as it is).
As an adult, I saw myself struggle with my weight. Long work hours and eating out with friends and family members contributed to my weight gain. Added to this was the fact that I just did not like to exercise. After a long day’s work, the last thing that I wanted to do was go to the gym. That all changed when I discovered dance fitness. I began taking Zumba classes, of which I loved, and this led me back to a passion that I had since childhood: dance. I started dancing when I was in the first grade. I was casted as an Arabian Dancer in my school’s Nutcracker Play. From there, I begged my parents to put me in dance classes; however, they refused. They believed that dancing was sinful, and were highly against all of my pursuits that were related to dance. In high school, I had a teacher who recognized that I had a gift in the area of dance, and she allowed me to perform in concerts with the school’s dance team. I even had a chance to perform in my city’s dance contest, in which I won the first place prize. Dance was always the place where I found happiness, and I would like to share that happiness with others.
As stated earlier, I learned that while education is important, there is a lot more to life than just working and obtaining good grades. It is important that we take care of ourselves physically and spiritually. I was extremely excited to discover dance fitness, as it was the key to my weight loss success. I know, from personal experience, that dance fitness works. But I also believe in Jesus Christ, and my faith in Him is very important to me. This is why I am choosing to offer a faith-based dance fitness class for those who love to dance, but who want an alternative to mainstream music. In all, Shazzy fitness is another way that I would like to make a positive impact on lives, as this is what God has instructed all believers to do. God bless you all in your fitness journey. You can do it!