CHEK Upside: Nanaimo ER nurse does double duty as online fitness coach

WatchA serious health scare a decade ago sparked a major change for emergency room nurse Charlotte Wussow. Today, in the midst of COVID-19, she's helping people stay healthy both in and out of the hospital.

It was around a decade ago when Charlotte Wussow’s life took a dramatic turn.

“In my 40s I led a pretty sedentary life and was smoking and quite out of shape. I actually had some chest pain one night at work as an emergency nurse, and had some changes on my heart tracing,” Wussow told CHEK News.

As an emergency nurse, Wussow knew first hand where she was heading. That night was her wake-up call. So the mother of two dedicated herself to health and wellness. She eventually became a fitness instructor, entered bodybuilding competitions, and now at 52-years-old, she’s a certified personal trainer and nutrition coach.

“One of the things that keeps me motivated is helping others stay motivated,” said Wussow. “Especially now in this time of crisis when health and wellness is so important.”

Well before the pandemic hit, Wussow had launched an online workout business and had built up a loyal clientele.  To this day, despite working 12-hour shifts at Nanaimo Regional General Hospital, she hasn’t slowed down. In fact, to help her health care colleagues, she’s started offering sessions for free.

“I named it ‘lockdown legacy’ because in spite of the lockdown we’re all currently in, it’s really important to create a legacy by showing how we come through and it and how we stand up to it,” said Wussow.

Amidst the COVID-19 crisis, this Harbour City hero says it’s all about keeping positive and staying together.

“Reducing our stress load through exercise and making sure that our bodies are kept nice and healthy, so we have our best chance of not contracting this virus.”

Willow’s spirit and energy are helping the team at NRGH stay physically and mentally strong, as they continue their fight on the front lines.

Kevin CharachKevin Charach

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