Schaper got down to 75 pounds and said her parents took her out of college to seek treatment for anorexia and depression. She then gained a significant amount of weight due to binge eating.
“At the time I was going through it, I was involved in an emotionally and physically abusive relationship,” she said. “And I used coping mechanisms with my eating disorders.”
Once she began coming out of her depression, with the help of antidepressant medicine and counseling, Schaper said she started to take a turn in the right direction.
“I think with a lot of women in particular you hear about eating disorders and a lot is based around body image and how much you weigh,” said Schaper. “There’s so much more to that. My main thing is to put it out there. I feel like being fit is physical, emotional, mental and spiritual.”
After she began training friends for free five years ago, Schaper said the idea was planted to turn that into a career, especially after she began seeing the changes in those she helped. With her personal training business that is based in and around Brookhaven, Buckhead and Dunwoody, Schaper trains men and women one-one-one or in group settings.
She also trains clients out of Elite Edge Fitness in Chamblee. Her categories include post pregnancy, obese, emotional eaters, girls out of recovery from treatment centers and athletes.
While not a certified nutritionist, Schaper said she does serve as a nutrition coach — assisting her clients with the tools to make better eating choices by going over menu plans, tweaking their diets and offering healthy solutions.
A few tips Schaper gave for those seeking a healthy lifestyle are: a person cannot out-exercise a poor diet, nutrition is 80 percent, consistency is key and there is no quick fix.
“It’s a lifestyle change and you have to be willing to put in work, be consistent and it will pay off,” she said.
Her future goals include more public speaking opportunities at treatment facilities and to inspire and help as many as possible.