Outside the Box with obé Member Ashley Sova

by team obé

What inspired you to join the obé fam?

Last year I lost my mom to cancer; she was my friend and my biggest cheerleader. She had survived breast cancer at 38 years old, only to develop aggressive kidney cancer at 62. She committed her life to taking care of other people. Not just our family, but she educated people in our small community on financial literacy and found housing for people who never thought they could own a home. She was endlessly selfless.

The day before she passed, I found out I was positive for a BRCA1 genetic mutation – my mom had tested positive earlier in the year. Quick science break: the BRCA gene provides instructions on creating a protein that acts as a tumor suppressor. When the gene is mutated, there is less of the protein to help repair damaged DNA or fix mutations. That in turn means the defects can cause cells to grow, divide, and cause cancer.

Testing positive for the BRCA1 mutation means that my lifetime risk for developing breast cancer is significantly higher than that of the average person (BRCA1 mutation carrier: 55-85% vs normal person: 13%). The best way to reduce risk is to have a preventative double mastectomy, which I elected to have on November 7th. 

I joined the obé fam to get in fighting shape before surgery. I wanted to feel strong going into it and during recovery, and my doctors said I would have the best results if I was exercising regularly. I know the road ahead will be extremely long and difficult, but with the help of my physical therapist I can’t wait to ease back into my obé workouts.

**I urge anyone with a family history of cancer (especially aggressive cancers and cancers developed at a young age!), to seek out genetic testing. Your insurance should cover it! And don’t hesitate to reach out to me with questions – I am always happy to chat about BRCA, motherhood, life..!

What’s your favorite thing about obé? 

There’s so much to love! The variety of the workouts and trainers’ personalities is key for me. It keeps every workout fresh, exciting, and something I look forward to. Also, I feel very hip having access to top trainers from the comfort of my home; I have 3 kids 5 and under who all have different schedules and needs – there’s no chance I could make it to a sexy gym in NYC 5x a week!

The obé aesthetic and brand is so different than anything else out there right now. Everything from the trainers’ outfits, to the obé box, to the music… it feels modern and pretty!

Also, I’ve been in other fitness groups on Facebook and otherwise that felt so contrived and superficial. With obé I’m never bombarded with cheesy slogans or encouraged to buy disgusting shakes. It’s simply a community of diverse people who enjoy working out and encouraging one another.

What are your fitness goals and what motivates you to stick to them?

I just had my third (and final!) baby 7 months ago and was looking for something different than what I’d always done, which was hop from one workout regimen to the next. Without fail I’d get bored with the repetitiveness of workouts and not see the results I wanted. I knew that since I was done having babies and thus done experiencing the weight, hormone, and fatigue fluxuations that come with pregnancy and postpartum (whew, females are strong as hell), I wanted to undergo a lifestyle change and achieve consistency in the long-term. 

Anything else the obé fam should know about you?

I started a business from scratch, CLEbaby (www.clebaby.com), less than four years ago and in the midst of raising our young kids. Myself and my team of eight women provide local birth and parenting services including doula support, in-home sleep training, private childbirth education, and more. In the beginning there were countless late-nights, swearing and crying to my hubby, worried if I was ever going to make money and pleading to him to let me quit. Thank goodness I didn’t; we now serve over a hundred families a year! I’m really proud of what we’ve built, and excited to see her grow!

What’s your IG handle, so we can all follow your obé journey? 

My personal handle is @cleshuggy, and my biz handle is @therealclebaby.

What’s something you’re currently obsessed with?

 Food and fashion are my fortes (and alliteration apparently). After my mom passed, my husband and I switched to a mostly plant-based diet. I’ve always enjoyed cooking, especially since improving over the years (early on there were plenty of meals thrown in the garbage followed by frenzied takeout runs). I love adapting my favorite meals into plant-based recipes and then forcing my family to try them! I make a mean cajun cashew cheese alfredo pasta and host a very tasty taco Tuesday.

Also, anyone who knows me knows I love fashion, and I am a HUGE fan of Rent the Runway. I enjoy experimenting with trends, even if sometimes they’re a bit goofy on my 5’2 frame. Being able to wear something new for date nights, girls brunch, and family weddings means I’m never yelling at my husband that I have nothing to wear!

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