Maddie Augustin hasn’t really ever been the sporty type. Growing up her parents had her trying everything but nothing really seemed to stick. As a teen, she was easily depressed and wouldn’t leave her room. After her a health class when words like “worthless” and “hopeless” were used to describe what it feels like to be depressed, Maddie thought to herself, “That’s me,” and she asked her mother to help her get anti-depressants.
Jill Augustin, the owner of the Anytime Fitness club in New Ulm, agreed to help her daughter obtain the medication, but she insisted that Maddie try something else first: exercise.
“I just thought that she needed to build up her self-esteem and take control of certain things in her life,” Jill said. “She needed to learn that she’s capable of things she’d never even imagined. I’ve seen it work for others and it certainly worked for Maddie. Exercise is a very powerful medicine.”
Exercising at the club twice a week with a personal trainer and three to four times a week on her own, Maddie lost weight, got stronger and gained confidence. Although she’s only 5’4” tall, she tried out for and made the University of Minnesota’s novice crew team – a sport typically dominated by much taller and bigger athletes.