By Suzy Wiesenhart

Riverview’s Vaughan Chambers, currently a Travel Consultant at Girl Friday Travel, has tagged herself as the “Adventurous Amputee” and here is why. She is a below knee amputee since May 2013 and to simply call her an athlete is an understatement.

In January 2015, she weighed 290 lbs. and was struggling with back, neck, hip and knee pain, and knew it was time to make a lifestyle change. Chambers changed her eating habits and began walking. By April 2015, she was down to 265 lbs. She joined Crunch Fitness and began personal training with Tasha Bomar, participating in TRX, Zumba, Cardio Tai Box, Retro Aerobics and more. She has since lost additional pounds and inches.

Chambers said, “I have set short term goals and long term goals and have completed five 5K’s, including one in my wheelchair.”

Chambers participated in the Air Climb for Lung Cancer, which was 951 stairs, 84 flights, 42 floors in memory of her friend, Edith Calvert. She has recently joined the Powerlifting team at the Raw Unity Barbell Club in Tampa. Eric Talmant, founder of Raw Unity meets, is the Powerlifting coach. William Rodriguez is an ISSA Certified strength and conditioning coach. Chambers is training for her first Powerlifting meet – TEAM PERSEVERANCE.

“My goal is to inspire others to realize that we can make a change and a difference,” Chambers said. “I set a goal to compete in my first triathlon by next year.”

Along the way, she began working with Barnabas Skobis, personal trainer, and transitioned lifting weights. She loved lifting and soon discovered powerlifting. She set her sights on the Paralympics in Powerlifting and was featured on the front page of Chambers now lifts four days a week at Raw Unity and will be competing in her first competition, Raw United Powerlifting Federation Last Chance 2015 Meet on Saturday, December 12 in Melbourne.

As an amputee, it has been a struggle to lose over 60 lbs. this year, but she is on a path of reaching her goals with the support of husband, John. She will no doubt achieve whatever goals she sets. Support and follow the “Adventurous Amputee” on Facebook, Instagram, YouTube and Twitter.

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Suzy Wiesenhart
Suzy is one of the Advertising Representatives for the Riverview area. She started with the Osprey as an advertising assistant in 2008 and has various positions since then. She is also on the Board of Directors of the Riverview Chamber of Commerce. She has lived in Bloomingdale with her husband, Tom for the last 22 years.