Two small business owners are working together to host an event geared toward women’s empowerment at Lotus Fitness on Dec. 1 from 7:30 to 8:30 p.m.
The event, dubbed Create Confidence with Positive Habits, is “an open discussion for women to come together as a community and encourage each other,” said Samantha Trocchia, who will host the event with Lotus Fitness owner Ahmed Ahmed.
“A lot of women feel unseen,” Ahmed said. “They’re so set on taking care of everyone else that they don’t have the time to take care of themselves, whether it’s at home with their family or with their boyfriend or their coworkers.”
Ahmed, 24, a first-generation immigrant from Egypt, opened Lotus Fitness, on Hempstead Turnpike, on the border of East Meadow and Levittown, last December. Roughly three months later, however, he was forced to close by the coronavirus pandemic, and he didn’t reopen until September.
For roughly a year before he opened the fitness center, Ahmed worked at New York Sports Club in Astoria, Queens, where he lives. Before that, he was a personal trainer at Stony Brook Crossfit while he studied business at Stony Brook University, from which he graduated in 2018.
What separates Lotus Fitness from Crossfit, however, is Ahmed’s intention to help people incorporate fitness into their lives rather than having it take over their lives, he said. “I opened it because I saw the effect it has on self-efficacy,” he said. “When you see your hard work turn into results, you could have the confidence to pursue any of your other goals. I believe that I could do anything, because that’s what fitness taught me.”
Ahmed recently met Samantha Trocchia through a mutual friend, and immediately discovered that they shared similar goals and aspirations, he said. Trocchia, 26, of Franklin Square, once pursued a career in the pharmaceutical industry, working in medical sales. “I didn’t feel I was helping people the way I could, so I worked my way out of that and into my own business,” she said.
Trocchia grew uncomfortable with her role in patients’ lives, she said, feeling like she was selling medication on top of medication to cover up the symptoms of their illnesses only to have them medicated for the rest of their lives without actually recovering.
At the same time, she was having digestive issues, and couldn’t find a proper diagnosis or treatment. She was misdiagnosed with a number of digestive disorders, and was told at one point that her small intestine was too small and she wasn’t absorbing enough nutrients because of it — a condition called short bowel syndrome. When that diagnosis proved to be wrong, her doctors told her that her condition was all in her head, or psychosomatic.
That was the turning point for Trocchia, and roughly three years ago she devised her own method of treatment. She cut dairy products from her diet, started exercising — by taking boxing lessons — and turned to essential oils, adding them to her tea or rubbing them on her stomach. Little by little, her method alleviated her symptoms and restored her self-confidence. She left her job, started taking entrepreneurship classes at Hof-stra University and launched her own business in naturopathic healing, dubbed the Radiant Essentials, which she runs out of her home and on Instagram.
Trocchia has used her business as a vehicle to become a women’s empowerment advocate, and started her own blog during the pandemic. This will be her first time leading an event in person.
“This is something totally different and out of my comfort zone,” she said of her collaboration with Ahmed. “It’s something that I’ve always wanted to do.”
The event will not involve any fitness, except for an exercise in posture that Ahmed will lead. “It’s easy, but goes a long way,” he said, explaining that good posture, like meditation, can improve self-confidence and reduce anxiety.
Registration for the event is free, and guests can sign up at Lotus Fitness anytime or online at https://bit.ly/360rtec.