Got a lot of MONA-vation

 Foam rolling before class, and writing down the workout after. Getting in a few extra “post-class” pull-ups, and taking a little time during work to get in a quick workout. If you’re a regular at NorCal, then there’s no doubt you’ve seen Mona Dagy. “Feel’n the burn”, but smiling the entire way… maybe with a curse word or two, but all said with love :)

An ever present figure, Mona was more than happy to take the time to share a little more about herself:

What do you do?
“I always find this question interesting. For fun or for work?  For fun, I hunt, garden and get fit. For work, I’m the Executive Assistant at River Partners. And I love my job! I always say I am one of the lucky ones.”

How long have you been training here at NorCal Strength & Conditioning, and what bought you here?
“I started in October 2010. Coming to NorCal at first was somewhat of a team-building exercise with many of my co-workers here at River Partners. Now it is a way of life.”

What were your goals when first starting out?
“Mostly to just lose weight and a smaller pant size.  Plus who doesn’t want to look good in a swim suit, especially when you are in your 40s. I was a size 12 when I started and I am now a size 6. My husband says I am half the woman he married. heehee”

Have they changed any?
“Due to a double mastectomy in March 2011, I was out for 6 months. I have a crazy family history of breast cancer. My mother died when she was 33yo and my grandma when she was 45yo of this disease and my test results over the last 7-years had been getting progressively worse.

I returned to NorCal in September 2011, and I can’t get enough. Thank goodness for the L.I.F.T. classes. These helped me to get back to the Elements Class.

My surgery made me realize how important it was to be fit. During my recovery to was so difficult to be so weak. I could not lift the laundry detergent, or reach the back of the dryer and I completely gave up on racking leaves. Oh, and I’m not good at being weak and having to ask for help. But I have an excellent support system at home and at work and everyone was so fantastic and supportive. But again, I hate being weak.

The 4 months of training I received at NorCal prior to my surgery, really helped me in my recovery.  Due to my newly acquired core strength I was able move around without help and even my doctors were surprised.

Before the surgery I could do 4 chin-ups and 10 push-ups, so again after my surgery I wanted to get back to this strength. But I knew recovery would be slow, so my first goals were 1 chin-up and 1 push-up, which I am proud to say I have just accomplished.

And regarding Paleo, I maintained this new lifestyle during my “down-time” which resulted in no extra pounds gained. YEAH!”

What are they now?
“I don’t know.  It took me so long to get the 1 chin-up and 1 push-up back (8 agonizing months). Maybe it will be 5 chin-ups and 10 push-ups.

Thank you NorCal for being a part of my life and for making my life better. I could not have recovered so quickly without the help of all the NorCal trainers. Your persistence and patience are greatly appreciated. You rock!”



Written by Justin

Justin Scott was Southern born, East Coast bred, and Midwest educated. The only constant being a love of athletic, martial arts, and competition. While earning a Bachelor and Masters degree from Purdue University he competed as an amateur boxer, endurance athlete, and trained Krav Maga (an Israeli self-defense system). These activities led to coaching a variety of athletes in everything from combative sports to endurance events. As a Krav Maga instructor Justin has had the opportunity to train not only civilians, but military, law enforcement and first responders on how to appropriately react during violent and life threatening situations. Due to his diverse experiences, Justin is able to bring a unique understanding of people, goal setting, achievement, and motivation to his coaching. He knows achieving one's goals in health and fitness can be difficult, but believes anything is possible with the right resources, programming, and motivation. With an eclectic background and rich steeping in fitness and nutrition Justin is able to coach a variety of clients with phenomenal results. "I find each individual comes to me with their own strengths and weaknesses, goals and aspirations, and perceptions of their ability to achieve them. I live for these moments when I see a client do something they never thought they could, or achieve a goal they always wanted to." Justin is a Certified Crossfit Endurance Coach, Phase B Certified Krav Maga Instructor, and Phase B Certified Fit-To-Fight Instructor.

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10 Comments

  1. Chuck Dagy

    NorCal played a huge part in Mona’s recovery. As mentioned, going into the surgery physically fit made the difference. To all the trainers, thank you for helping the love of my life.

    Chuck

    • Shawn G
      Shawn G

      You are so welcome! We all LOVE Mona and her “Die Hard” attitude! Thanks Chuck!

  2. Tod K.

    Great story Mona! It is always a pleasure to see you at the 6AM class with your smiling face and foam roller! I always thought you were writing bad words about Justin in that notebook! You are a great inspiration!

    • Justin S.

      I’m pretty sure there’s a few of those in there too, lol.

  3. Great story.

    If you’re interested in goal setting, you may want to check out http://www.GoalsOnTrack.com, a very nicely built web app designed for tracking goals and todo lists, and supports time tracking too. It’s clear, focused, easy to navigate, worth a try.

  4. I love Mona!

  5. Katie D.

    Mona, you’re such a badass!! Great work in and outside of the gym! You’re one of the most dedicated people I know and it has surely paid off! I have no doubt that soon you will hit your 5 chin-up and 10 pushup goal!

  6. Shawn G
    Shawn G

    Mona, you are one of my favorite people to see at 5:45am, granted you are usually the only one their at that time. :-) Honestly Mona you truly are an inspiration to us all and constantly remind us how to keep moving forward….no matter what!!! I say 8 pull ups and 15 push ups!

  7. Mona, Mona, Mona. If they only knew the other side of the story. The times we faught when I took away your potato chips, the arguments when I said “no soda!” and the coutless times I found your blue cheese dressing stash; in your laundry room, your closet, your glovebox. All this, now in the past. You’ve crossed over. Congratulations! You’re truly amazing and you inspire me daily.

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