With every beat of her Pound drumsticks, 38 year-old fitness instructor Madeleine Pfiffner-Dinglasan commits to a purpose she hadn’t realized until recently, a purpose that drives her to constantly be better not just for herself but for those she wishes to inspire. With every tedious action she allows her body to go through, with every sweat she sheds, and with every challenge she openly accepts, the passion to keep moving, changing, and motivating blossoms. Her story is about sheer will and what happens to a person who completely embraces progress in its every form: from physical, mental, to emotional.
And all that progress just happened in a little over a year.
What seemed to be under control at first spiralled into an addiction.
“Towards the end of 2016, I had a wake up call. I was depressed, I had no self worth, and I was drinking my problems away. I was an alcoholic and I needed help,” Madie opened up. With a fruitful career in Sales and Marketing that spanned for 16 years, the wife and mother faced a circumstance that comes with a highly stressful working environment. The craft she’s adept in eventually burned her out leaving her feeling unaccomplished, exhausted, and unfulfilled. She couldn’t figure out what was it that she was missing no matter what she did. She turned to alcohol to help her destress and relax. What seemed to be under control at first spiralled into an addiction.
At that moment, when she was stuck in a rut and realized what has become of her, the gears clicked in motion. This is where most inspirational stories like hers unfold. When left with a choice and only one’s will, should you choose to succumb and remain with the status quo or do you write your own story and commit to progress? Madie chose the latter and marked a special occasion to prove herself right. She made a New Year resolution at the dawn of 2017. “I needed to find help and to stop my drinking and smoking. This was not an easy task because I would crave my alcohol fix as early as 1 in the afternoon. I knew I had to shift my addiction to something else. I needed to keep myself busy and try something new.”
"I wanted to be a living testimony of how change can be accomplished.”
Dance Aerobics classes were being held in her neighborhood and she attended four times a week to divert her attention from alcohol. At 190 pounds and what she described as a very unhealthy and toxic lifestyle, she found it extremely difficult. She was constantly out of breath compared to the other women in her class that were much older than her. But instead of giving up, she used the challenge to motivate her. The cravings haunted her, but every time she faced it with exercise she remembered her need to start over. “A new life for me was in order and I wasn’t going to quit. Not anymore. I was on the verge of losing my family, friends, and myself. I remembered one night, I just prayed and prayed, I asked God to just put me where He wants me to be. I surrendered myself to Him. I needed to be healed and guided,” she shared.
Just a few months after, she felt she had a new lease on life, a second chance to do something about her situation and her story. She was able to break free from the bondage of addiction and people found inspiration with her transformation. “This was the same inspiration that then made me want to be a fitness instructor, so that I could help inspire others that needed help the way I did. I wanted to be a living testimony of how change can be accomplished.”
After completing a course as a Group Fitness Instructor, she yearned to keep learning more. She then signed up for the Asian Fitness Convention in Thailand. “That’s where I saw Pound Rockout Workout. The word ‘Rockout’ caught my attention and I did some research. When I saw their video, the heavens opened the door for me. That was it, I knew that this is what I wanted to do, what I wanted to teach, and what I wanted to excel in.” In the official website, Pound is described as an “exhilarating full-body workout that combines cardio, conditioning, and strength training with yoga and pilates-inspired movements. Using Ripstix®, lightly weighted drumsticks engineered specifically for exercising, POUND transforms drumming into an incredibly effective way of working out.” On September 9, 2017, Madie became a certified Pound Instructor. “That was the day that changed my life,” she said.
"We have become a family that lifts each other up."
Because she had diverted all her attention into healing and rehabilitation, she kept going. She also secured certification for Piloxing, a cardio fusion of pilates and boxing, and recently finished her Amplified Training in the U.S. She vowed to make helping individuals battle depression and anxiety through her teaching, and with that, it’s made her fitness journey even more rewarding. Exercise has been known to be an effective therapy for physical and mental ailments, but packaging it in a fun atmosphere with a teacher who aims to inspire help hook the habit. “Pound has so many amazing benefits. It’s a stress reliever that provides a safe zone for healing. It’s therapy. It helps us become confident. It allows us to release stress and emotions. It provides a community of amazing individuals. And most importantly, it teaches us to love ourselves for who we are. It is a no judgment zone where everyone can comfortably be themselves without pretension. It is also a workout that caters to all stages and ages. Of course, it’s a big bonus that it’s an intense cardio jam session that sculpts the body with a caloric burn of 800 to 1000 calories in a 45-minute class. It’s fun, full of energy, and nothing but great music,” Madie ascertained.
Madie also emanates the joy from someone who begets it. She shared that “in less than a year, I am so fortunate to have the honor to teach 16 different classes in a week. In my classes, I have met the most amazing people, all with their own stories to tell. They all inspire me to keep being a better person. I may have started with me, but now I do what I do for them. Every day, in every class, I am humbled with their dedication and willingness to be better individuals. I see the change in every class: how they progress, how their attitude in life transforms, and how, together, we have become a community. We have become a family that lifts each other up. My students are the reason why I want to be great so that they can be even greater individuals. Their success is what fills my heart with a pure sense of accomplishment. There is no greater feeling than this.”