Client Testimonials

Maria Faires, RDIf you know me, you know that I love what I do.  My dedication to the happiness and success of my clients is more important to me than anything.  Without your successes, I cannot be successful. 

I am grateful for all the kind words I've received over the years and look forward to helping all of my clients, new and old.  Word of mouth referrals are always important to me, so I cannot express how important it is for me to see and experience the achievements of those I work with. 

Please take a moment to review the testimonials below, and if you'd like to write in with any questions, comments or even a testimonial of your own, please don't hesitate to contact me.


NOTE: This is a remote client. He has since climbed Mt. McKinley under my guidance.

 In late November 2011 I set a goal of climbing Aconcagua, located in Argentina, the highest mountain in the Western Hemisphere. At 22,841ft, Aconcagua would be by far the highest summit I had ever attempted. Prior to setting this goal I had primarily been climbing peaks in the 14,000 - 15,000 range, but a peak of this magnitude I knew would require a significant amount of planning and extraordinary effort. The summer prior to setting this goal I had successfully summited Mt Blanc in France (15,781ft), but had struggled a great deal towards the summit and knew that if Aconcagua was going to become a reality I would need help.

I decided it was time to find a professional who could help me get in shape prior to my attempt on Aconcagua and began browsing the Internet for someone who I thought would be suitable for the task. After some time I came across Maria Faires at My Active Nutrition who has personally climbed a number of prominent peaks in the North Western United States and I felt that she possessed the experience and knowledge needed to help me prepare for Aconcagua.

Soon after contacting Maria and describing my goal we began working on a plan for the upcoming year. During the initial phase of the program Maria initiated a number of benchmark tests to determine my current fitness level in order to determine what needed to be done in order to be in top shape before my climb. Given that I live in New York Maria was in for a real challenge as I did not have much access to the great outdoors, which is considered the best training for mountain climbers.

Despite this, Maria managed to create a program that would build and condition the muscles necessary for climbing high mountains and over the next ten months Maria and I worked closely to get me ready for Aconcagua.

Maria knew that preparing for a mountain like Aconcagua required a significant amount of commitment and personal sacrifice, and she knew that this would be a challenging task for me. Knowing this, she would often tweak my training program in order to keep me motivated and would provide positive reinforcement when I was feeling down.

On December 13th I departed for Argentina for my attempt on Aconcagua and was faced with one of the toughest seasons in years. The weather conditions had been unusually bad and there had been many unsuccessful attempts by the time my expedition reached base camp. After spending seven days at base camp we were granted a three day window where weather conditions looked promising for a potential summit. On December 28th we were given a green light for a summit attempt which proved to be a grueling 12 hour day in which five out of six climbers of my expedition were forced to turn around, with the exception of myself.

At 2PM local time I successfully summited Aconcagua together with our lead guide, marking one of the first successful summits of the season, and the only successful summit for my expedition.

Looking back at my experience on climbing Aconcagua I realize that there were a number of factors that contributed to my success, but one of the primary reasons was my physical and mental preparation that began almost a year before my actual climb, and which I have Maria to thank.

Maria is an extraordinary trainer and individual who cares immensely for her clients and their goals and is someone who I recommend highly to anyone whether looking to lose a few pounds or looking to scale the highest peaks in the world.

Personally I have many more mountains to climb in the future and I know Maria will play an integral part in my success of these summits.

Daniel Akerman, Manhatttan, NY

NOTE: This is a remote/online client.

I've had the good fortune to find Maria Faires among a maze of personal fitness experts. As a 57 year old with still a few more mountains to climb but also with emerging health issues and weight out of control, I needed more than just a to-the-max work out instructor or a miracle diet that would undoubtedly be almost dead on arrival.

Maria fit the bill - and did so from 3,000 miles away, as I am in Virginia and she is in Washington State!  Maria's remote training services are better than anything I could have expected to receive from any of the many local fitness professionals in my area.  As a hiker and climber herself Maria understood that I  wasn't trying to set world records or be the 'iron man'. She worked with me to develop a realistic plan and objectives that were clear and achievable.  Maria put together a great combination of healthy eating and exercise that put me on the right path.  Over the course of 4 months I lost 60 pounds!

I successfully tackled the highest point in Idaho (unthinkable a year ago) and conquered another high point that had turned me back a year ago.  The leg pain that used to accompany exertion--even just walking--is completely gone! I've become stronger and more flexible and I feel great!  Most importantly, the dreaded doctor's visit was a big win with "all the numbers"  (including Hemoglobin A1c ) simply called "ideal"!   I have kept the weight off and kept up the exercise and have a much healthier lifestyle.  Now it's on to a new objective and more success!  Thank you, Maria!!!”

Jim B., 57, Clifton, Virginia

Read Success Story:  Jim's remote training journey

Consummate Personal Trainer

Every day we find ourselves presented with an overwhelming variety of choice in professionals, products and businesses. I can confidently say, and most people who know me would agree, that I am one of the most particular people on the planet.  I have an immediate “quality sensor” and find that my instincts are reliable and generally right on the mark.  

Six years ago, I was assessing my fitness level more seriously than ever and knew some changes in my half-hearted routine were in order.  Once I made up my mind to find someone to help me, I “happened upon” Maria Faires at a local business.  It was a coincidence; maybe, that it turned out that Maria had her own personal fitness business and once again, my “quality sensor “proved itself as accurate. 

I trained with Maria for a number of years and I think the most striking and fitting way to the level of her services is that she is cutting-edge.  See a new exercise routine in Women’s Health or other fitness publication? Oh, that’s old news.  Maria’s already incorporated that into her workout routines that she customizes for every single client.  This has happened consistently to me where I see a news segment or article on what to do or what not to do exercise or nutrition-wise. I can smugly say “Maria has already provided that information.” She has a holistic, compassionate, comprehensive approach to every client that she takes on.  If you are particular and look for the best, Maria Faires is the fitness professional for you.

Rosemary N., Issaquah, age 59

I had tried dieting and exercise for years and never seemed to get past a certain point.  December 2012 I realized that my weight was at an all-time high, I was extremely fatigued and had a hard time going up even one flight of stairs.  

I did some research and heard that Maria was the best in the area. I made an appointment and Maria began with several assessments and found areas of my body that were particularly weak and tight because of my years siting at a desk. She took the time to teach me some exercises to help correct those issues as she taught me the best way to workout to lose weight and get fit. She has given me workouts to do at home on my own and I visit her twice a week for varied workouts. What a difference a well-designed program makes. Maria makes it fun and knows when to push and when to let up.

Maria has also worked with my husband in her studio and at our home. She helped redesign our gym and when we got our new equipment she created several workouts for us using the new equipment.

In addition to working on our fitness, Maria has helped my husband and I with our nutrition.     

It's been almost a year and I've lost over 25 pounds, 23 inches and 3 dress sizes. I have more energy and look forward to my workouts.  Maria goes above and beyond to help with nutrition and personalized workouts. 

Jan, Sammamish

I reached a point in my life where I had enough of not being as healthy as I knew I could be or wanted to be - and this is where my journey with Maria began. 

I had 2 children within 1 year (11 months apart) and it had taken a great toll on my body, but I had let that excuse keep me from working out andeating healthy for 3 more years.  At first, I was mostly looking for someone to pay 100% attention to me and hold my hand through the difficult beginning stage of trying to create a life change. 

Maria supported me in this and so much more.  She has become a mentor, idol, coach and friend. I've learned so much about nutrition and fitness and I am pleased to say that the things I am learning and doing now are sustainable for the rest of my life. I have seen results beyond what I expected or wished for, but the funny thing is that most would give up at this point of satisfaction.  I feel the opposite, and want to continue to push myself; and I couldn’t imagine doing that without Maria’s guidance and coaching. 

Maria truly provides the whole package in training and nutrition and I am so grateful to have found her in my journey to a fit and healthy lifestyle.

Cristiana, 34, Sammamish

After years of not exercising I decided that it was time I asked for help with my fitness. I had never had a gym membership and the idea of joining one now terrified me. I searched "personal trainer in Sammamish" and found Maria's website. Her site is very detailed and informational and I quickly learned that she was a personal trainer AND a dietitian. I had already decided that I needed some help in providing nutritious meals that were easy to make and that the whole family would love. Maria seemed like the perfect match for me! I emailed her right away and she was happy to meet me and discuss my fitness and nutrition goals.
 
We clicked! And Maria's set up was perfect for me - a private area for training and her one-on-one attention - not at all like a scary gym!! Over 6 months Maria guided me in all areas of health, fitness and nutrition and I have never felt better! Besides the benefits of losing weight, I definitely have more energy and love that the family is eating healthy meals.
 
If you need someone to help you with fitness and nutrition, Maria is the one for you. She is very encouraging and supportive, and never made me feel silly as I was learning how to complete new exercises. Scary exercise actually became fun! 
 
Vicki, 45, Sammamish

Big Weight Loss ClientNOTE: this is a remote/online/Skype client.

For anyone looking for someone to train you via technology! Maria is the trainer for you.

She helped me lose 30 pounds of baby weight after my second pregnancy and we never once were in the gym together! She helped me via email, phone and Skype. She's amazing!

She set me up for not just weight loss, but a complete lifestyle change success!

Jennifer, Kansas City

I have now been training three times a week with Maria for two and a half years. Initially, I wanted her to help me with a total lifestyle change that I could manage and maintain.

My level of fitness has improved and continues to improve. I can perform exercises that I could not have possibly performed before. I have dramatically increased my strength: I could only do 20 pushups when we began and now I can do over 60. I have lost weight, inches and body fat and have maintained that loss.

I could have never done it without her training program, encouragement and pushing me to perform at a higher level. I cannot even imagine going through a week without my training sessions. She keeps me on my toes and we do different exercise every time so sessions with her never get boring. She happily shares her expertise to make the sessions fun, challenging, and a learning experience.

I am very appreciative of Maria’s enthusiasm and sincere effort to raise my level of performance and fitness.

Christine I., North Bend WA, age 42

I am a senior who was having serious problems with falling, lack of energy, difficulty walking due to osteoarthritis, and weight management.  I became a client of Maria Faires in early September 2014 in order to improve my balance, flexibility, overall strength, stamina, and lose weight.  After a complete evaluation of my fitness level, Maria developed a comprehensive fitness plan to achieve my goals.  As the fitness program progressed we met several times in order to assess the results and make any necessary modifications.

Maria, was extremely supportive and excellent in ensuring that I understood each of the exercises and carried them out correctly and with maximum benefit.  She is patient, caring, and a superb teacher. 

It is approximately 8 weeks later.  I have drop two sizes in my clothes, am able to take walks that I have not been able to take for years, have more energy, and am feeling stronger and more confident. 

I owe this wonderful progress to the best fitness instructor ever, Maria Faires.

Bonnie Anderson, Issaquah, Age 71

I've worked with Maria for about six months and in that time have lost 25 pounds (over 15% of my original weight) and 20 inches, all over my body. (UPDATE at month 8: Joan has lost 30 pounds, 6.8% body fat and 22.75 inches). I see Maria only about once a month for measuring and to go over my exercise program, mainly because I live 40 minutes from her. I avidly read the motivational pieces and recent studies on health and nutrition she sends to clients. I am 63 and have always been interested in health and fitness. There were, however, frequent times when I let stress or low moods ruin my intentions. My weight had crept up—much higher than I was even aware—and I really wasn't convinced I could bring it back down. Now, six months into a program with Maria, I am stronger, more fit and feel younger than ever. Over these months I have come to understand how personal Maria's support is. She is simply outstanding at tailoring the nutrition and exercise plans, along with her motivational coaching, to the person. In my case, I needed to more finely tune the balance of protein, carbohydrates, fiber and fats and become much more conscious of portions. Just in 6 months my knowledge of nutrition has increased dramatically. On the exercise side, I tended to work too hard. Maria helped me scale back to an exercise program that was sustainable. Now that I'm not pushing so hard (and having injuries) I exercise every day, with real enthusiasm. The secret ingredient that Maria offers is a real ability to connect. She has obviously done her own work—both personally and in the fields of exercise and nutrition. She knows deeply the process of gaining fitness and she knows the complexity of making changes. Her encouragement always feels like she has tuned right into me and found the tweaking, the words, or the change of approach that was exactly what I needed at that moment. I have great respect for Maria's professionalism, knowledge and sincere commitment to help her clients gain health and fitness. In Maria, you can expect to find a coach and a friend, who will walk right by your side, every pound of the way.

Joan, Seattle, Age 64

I had always thought that I exercised enough and ate well. I was puzzled a couple of years ago when I started needing to buy bigger clothes. At my last physical, my doctor told me my cholesterol was high. Then, last September I injured my back, and had to miss some beautiful days on the lake.

I knew I needed professional help. A friend told me about Maria, and I was impressed by her website. I knew from our first meeting that she was going to be the help I needed. She immediately reassured me that things would improve and we got to work. She listened to my concerns and observed my body in motion. She steered me in the right direction with a plan to improve my cardiovascular health, strength, flexibility, and nutrition. I knew that Maria would help me to realize my goals quickly and safely. Her knowledge, experience, example, and confidence have helped me make major changes in my health and well being in two short months. I have more energy, I sleep better, I have gone down two pants sizes, and enjoy moving around every day in my "new" strong and healthy body. My daughter says that I'm a "much better mommy" since I started seeing Maria!

Thank you, Maria!

Rebecca, Preston, WA

I am an avid cyclist and have ridden many miles in the US and the European Alps and Pyrenees for the past thirteen years. I was experiencing severe back pain and sought out Maria as a trainer because I was impressed with her extensive clinical credentials and her appearance.

When we began she did a thorough assessment and she said my lower body was strong from cycling, but I seriously needed to work on my upper body and needed to strengthen my core.

The back pain I was experiencing before meeting with her was gone in a few days after starting the workouts and has never returned. I have been training with Maria twice a week for almost 5 years year now and due to her workout regimen, I have had the strongest cycling seasons ever. I have lost weight, and my upper body and core are the strongest they have ever been. Maria has been with me to the summits of Mt. St. Helens, Mt. Adams and Mt. Rainier.

Maria is always energetic, upbeat and always has the latest news and information to keep her people in the best shape physically and nutritionally. Due to the fact that she is constantly researching topics, she puts together the most interesting workouts of anyone I have ever worked out with. I am so impressed with Maria’s training routines.

Marcia R, Fall City, WA

My wife and I have been seeing Maria for a short 9 weeks and can't believe the results we have experienced! Before starting to workout with Maria, I (Marc) had been diagnosed with High Blood pressure and was having chronic back pain. The combination of nutrition and exercise have lowered my blood pressure to "excellent" range and I'm no longer having the back pain that had plagued me for months.

The cost of her services has been well worth the health benefits we have experienced. We have enjoyed Maria's professional approach and encouraging ways! Thanks Maria. You're the best!

Marc and Sallie, ages 52

NOTES FROM MARIA:  In 9 weeks, Marc lost 11 pounds, 9 inches and 7% body fat. Before working with me, his blood pressure averaged 158/94. With exercise and my recommended eating plan it is now 119/59 without medication. Sallie lost 6.8 pounds, 6 inches and 3% body fat. And can fit into the sexy little black dress she didn’t think she’d ever get into again!  I'm proud of both of you!

Personal Trainer Extraordinaire!  I truly thought I had a grasp on how to weight train, eat right and maintain my weight.  As it turns out, I was so far behind the times in terms of fitness, diet and nutrition.  I was overexerting myself, my workouts were ineffective, I was suffering one injury after another and as far as my diet was concerned, FORGET ABOUT IT!  Maria's training routines and nutritional guidance have literally changed my life!  I tried other personal trainers on the Sammamish Plateau, around Bellevue and the entire eastside. Let me tell you, there is NOBODY as professional, as thorough and as knowledgeable as Maria Faires.  Until you see Maria, I'd bet anything you aren't training properly and you are not maximizing your potential.  Rather than going on with all the accolades, because Maria's training routines are by far like nothing I've experienced, let me give you results:  I dropped 30 pounds in less than 3 months, I'm hiking on trails I couldn't even fathom hiking before and I'm doing it without gasping for air like it was my last breath.  I've lost weight, I've lost inches, my cardiovascular health has improved, I've gained endurance and as for my strength, I don't know where to even begin.  Personal training is not a job or just a skill; It's a true art. And as far as I'm concerned, Maria is Picasso!  I was throwing my money away on other trainers and then I found Maria. Think they're all the same?  Think again!  Maria is like no other, and I'll be singing her praises all the way up Mt. Rainier this summer!  Thank you Maria!  I cannot say it enough so THANK YOU!

E.S., Kirkland, WA

I have been talking up Maria’s services because I have been impressed with her approach, and the job that she has done.

The dual ACE Trainer / RD certification is really a tremendous benefit for anyone embarking on a lifestyle change / life fitness program.

She has done a great job of setting up a balanced program that is forcing me to work neglected / undertrained muscles. If the newfound soreness is any indication, my workout is targeting muscles in the upper back that have been neglected, and I am excited about the process. I am also very happy that I am able to work out without wrist pain.

Now it’s up to me to use the muscles that Muhammad Ali said were the most important and push myself away from the table....

If you ever need a reference, please feel free to forward my contact info.

Mike M., Sammamish, WA

Maria is the best trainer around! She is motivational, fun and full of current information on nutrition and exercise. My body at 56 is in better shape than when I was 26! I’ve been with her for four years and plan to stick with her until I’m at least 100.

Chelle W. - age 56

This week I received recognition from my employer for another calendar year of perfect attendance. Much of the credit belongs to Maria for her excellent efforts of educating me about nutrition and exercise. Her attention and encouragement have been very helpful. I really admire her caring nature, and feel I have benefited greatly from her advice.”

Jim B, Issaquah, WA

I was overweight and not motivated to exercise. My daughter referred me to Maria after her success with Maria’s program. Because of the easy to follow nutrition program and Maria’s support and emphasis on exercise, I am now 55 pounds lighter and enjoy working out with a weight and cardio plan that she designed. I'm convinced that her guidance has added years to my life!  

B.E, Sammamish

Maria-  Your email made me smile. I just read it, sighed, and I felt my shoulders relax. You are so kind to offer to be there for me. I'm getting so much more out of you as a "trainer" than I could ever have imagined! Thank you!!! 

Julie, Issaquah

When I first came to Maria, I'd already been exercising regularly and eating fairly well for most of my adult life, but I never saw any change whatsoever in my body shape. When I hit menopause, I started packing on the pounds around my waist and hips. It was as though I was programmed to gain weight in those areas, no matter what I did.

Frustrated, I decided to try Maria for 10 combination sessions in both nutrition and exercise. During this time, I lost nearly 4 percent of my body fat, and--incredibly-- two pant sizes! My thighs, butt and tummy are quite noticeably thinner. I feel inspired now to look better and be healthier at 50 than I was at 35, and I know I can do it.

I achieved this without even increasing my total work-out time, or really changing my diet that much. I learned that I was doing the weight-lifting wrong for all those years, and was never doing my cardio at a high enough intensity. I was just wasting my time. Also, I learned that I needed to eat more often so that I wouldn't be tempted to scarf down any old thing out of extreme hunger.

Maria is just the right combination of Sympathy and Nazi. She has a certain quality that makes you feel you shouldn't disappoint her, and that's a great quality for a personal trainer. She has now helped my husband lose 15 pounds, and he's a guy who HATES exercise and eating right. He wouldn't listen to me for 22 years, but he listens to Maria! I would recommend her to anyone.

Diana W., Sammamish

Thank you Maria! I hadn't stepped on a scale in awhile and was quite thrilled to see this morning that I am only 2 pounds away from my goal weight-- I weigh 127, which I haven't weighed in God knows how long. And John is only 1 pound away from his original goal of losing 20 pounds! Needless to say we are very happy, and quite grateful to you. There is absolutely NO DOUBT we could never have done it without you!  

Diana W., Redmond, WA

Hi Maria. I wanted to send you a note thanking you again for your help. It was such a pleasure to get to know you and your expertise has been such a boost. Thank you for traveling so far to meet with me! You have opened my eyes to many things and I am very grateful. I will keep you updated on my progress. Many thanks to you! - Janet P., Woodinville, WA

Maria-  Thanks for the diet and the training...I have to tell you I am so pleased that you and I connected with each other. Finding you was one of the best things I've ever done for myself. You are the best!  Thanks again, I truly appreciate all of the encouragement, time and energy that you are putting in. 

Sara, Sammamish, WA

Thank you very much for your help with Bill's weight loss - he's doing great! I would highly recommend you to any of my friends - you really know your stuff!  

Kath D., Seattle, WA

Oh Maria, you are so dear to write to me. I am so thankful for having you in my life! That hike was so amazing! Your family is wonderful! Your clients group was soooo fun!  THANK YOU! 

Julie M., Issaquah, WA after Mt. St. Helens Overnight Climb

Thanks for your email and the picture. I've attached one of you and Rich, too. That was such a fantastic day - one which really deserves the word "awesome!" 

Chas Dreyfus after Mt. St. Helens Overnight Climb, Sammamish, WA

Maria, 

I can't thank you enough for inviting us along and all your encouragement and support. It was truly one of my most amazing experiences. Your family is wonderful. Every single person in our group was wonderful. You took such good care of us!  -  Peggy D. after Mt. St. Helens overnight climb, Sammamish, WA

Maria,

I am truly impressed and so proud of you making it to the top. Your strength and perseverance has inspired me in so many ways. I am just so darn lucky that you are my friend and I look forward to many fun years ahead!!!!!!!!!!!

I went to see my doctor today. He was very impressed with what you are doing to this fat old body. My blood pressure is good and I've lost 11.5 lbs. since my July 8th visit. Very cool! Thank you!  

Mike M., Sammamish, WA

Maria,

We are on a roll! Mark had a bad chest cold and then he managed to sprain his ankle, so missed some time, but last week we both made it the 3 times! He is willing if not yet appreciating the added benefits, but he has not been able to do the cardio as consistently because of the ankle. I on the other hand, LOVE the extra energy and have planned the workouts into our lives. On Sunday, we went to church, worked out in the yard, went to the gym, and went to a birthday party that evening. I also, have noticed less low back pain when working out in the yard.   

Lisa C., Issaquah, WA

The workouts are better and better. One of the benefits already is the decreased back pain after doing yard work! Go ABS! When we meet you again, I'd like to talk to you about my goal to do the STP and the Chilly Hilly which I believe is in Feb. I decided I needed a more immediate goal since the STP is not until July. 

Lisa C., Sammamish, WA

Thank you so much for caring about my progress. I appreciate your direction more than you know. I’ve had five different people comment to me today about how much stronger, straighter and healthier I seem…even more energy. I’m either wearing a really good color for me, or the difference I feel on the inside is starting to show on the outside! I’d have given up a long time ago if it weren’t for you!!  

Paulette, Snoqualmie, WA

Hi Maria...thanks so much!  I can't help but think fate played a roll in all of this. If I hadn't answered the ad for the $9.00 special for the club, then I wouldn't have met you and I wouldn't have a clue what to do with all of this and I'm sure I'd be feeling more scared. I feel so much better knowing you're there to guide me!  

Maren, Sammamish

Thanks for the encouragement! You really go "above and beyond" for your clients and that has a big impact. 

Lyda, Seattle

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