Surviving a motorcycle accident, raising two children, moving on from a divorce, becoming an author, and starting her own media company, Marie Pizano, 53, sat down with us to share how she found her “yes” in life and how you can, too. 

The Chicago native’s interest in fitness began at age 16 when she fell in love with bodybuilding and aerobic exercise. 

To stay in shape, Marie recalls learning to enjoy the rich Italian, Mexican, and Polish cultural cuisines of her family’s cooking in moderation. 

So, when she was hit by a 1988 Dodge vehicle at age 18, Marie’s body had the strength and resiliency to make a full recovery. 

“The doctors told me that the average, everyday person is like a piece of paper, whereas someone who works out regularly is more like a piece of cardboard – their bodies are harder to break.” 

However, the 284 stitches in her right thigh lost her a modeling contract, derailing her subsequent plans of moving to Hollywood. 

“It’s by the grace of God that I’m alive today.” 

Marie credits her belief in a higher power with facilitating the healing process. 

“Without faith, I wouldn’t know how to get through the world.” 

After producing a documentary, Marie published her first book, From Barefoot to Stilettos, and is currently working on her next piece, plus more movie content. 

In 2011, Marie founded MVP3 Entertainment Group, a company seeking to centralize Memphis creative production and encourage collaboration, utilizing both of her degrees in Business and Media Studies. 

Always prioritizing health and fitness, Marie serves as an ambassador for HOTWORX in Collierville, a company with whom she shares the mission of helping people take ownership of their well-being. 

As a HOTWORX ambassador, Marie speaks at their women-led events, which cover various topics, from financial literacy and buying a home to doctor-led discussions about female-related issues, including heart health and inflammatory foods. 

“Our events provide tips and help you connect with other women. Having those professional connections can be empowering.” 

In addition to frequenting HOTWORX’s hot yoga classes, Marie enjoys a treadmill and light weights gym regimen. 

She always ends her days with guided meditation. 

“It’s taking the negativity out and reprogramming because the world often tells us that we can’t, and I always say yes, I can, and I will find my yes.” 

Regarding diet, the mom of two suggests finding what works for your body while staying educated about female health. She tries to keep inflammatory foods at a minimum while incorporating more Omega 3s like salmon and consumes lots of berries, leafy greens, and certain yogurts. 

Holding an online degree in Fitness and Nutrition, Marie recreates delicious and nutritious family favorites at home, such as vegetable soup and pumpkin muffins. 

“I try to find what works for my body at my age. Everybody’s body is different. For me, it’s about moderation, but it’s also about balance with the mind, body, and soul.” 

By Shlomit Ovadia

Photo by Tindall Stephens