Updated: Jul 31
~ Lashley Training Center ~
By Sarah Elise + Matthew Gottermeyer
Another month down, and another diligent, dedicated, and deserving member of the month has been chosen. Whether she’s fighting for family rights, throwing weight
around in the gym, drilling self defense tactics, or in “Mom mode,” Tonia Pever Welker is most worthy of our Lashley Training Center Member of the Month of June.
Only four years ago, Tonia combined forces with Personal Trainer Adam Taylor. Although the two previously worked together for the City Of Mount Vernon for years, it was Adam whom she praises for giving her the motivation to take the reins on her life stating, “He held me accountable, and he’s essentially the one that got me interested in the gym.” After two and a half years of personal training, Tonia transitioned to the 24/7 gym, no longer needing the motivation or the accountability anymore, as the gym became something she looked forward to every day. “It’s my stress relief … my self care - both physically and mentally. Plus - it’s a better coping skill than drinking,” she noted with a laugh.
Oftentimes, her youngest son would accompany her to the gym, and it wasn’t long before four-year-old Grant got an itch for fitness and wanted to get out on the mats with his peers. While the weights are a full body relief for her, Tonia credits the Lashley Jiu Jitsu program for bringing her little one out of his shell, mentioning that, “It’s made him more confident, more social. It gives him structure, and he looks forward to it every Monday and Wednesday.”
Her passion for the gym has spread like wildfire in her family, and now her two older sons, Wade (16) and Cole (14), can be spotted lifting with her, too. Having a solid support system is an added bonus, and the four men in her corner complete her hype squad. Husband, Kevin, commented that he is incredibly proud of her for all the determination, commitment, and hard work
she’s been putting in.
She shows a lot of discipline by going to the gym as regularly as she does, and that self-discipline is extremely motivating. I’m very proud of what she’s accomplished so far. She’s worked hard and was surprised to be recognized.
When she’s not making gains, Tonia also attends Krav Maga classes with instructor Dave Lashley. Though it might seem intimidating for any woman or new prospect, the benefits far outweigh the risk or hesitation to step outside the comfort zone. She pointed out that, "It’s [Krav Maga] made me aware of my surroundings, and I think every woman should know some self defense. Dave makes you feel very comfortable and all the other guys are great. They don’t take it easy on you just because you’re a girl, but they’re gentlemen, too.
Whether it’s escapes and submissions with strangers or a solo swole sesh, Tonia’s newfound mentality is on point. Her advice for the unmotivated: “Just show up and find someone to help you be accountable. Fitness is a lifestyle not a destination. Changes don’t happen easily or overnight - it’s a commitment.”
Outside of the gym, Tonia’s life consists mainly of work, family, and furry friends. With 14 years of litigation experience and a helluva role model in Ruth Bader Ginsburg, this married mother of three also owns and operates her own family law firm on Vine Street, where she’s been practicing for the past four years. Though she’s familiar with Knox County, having spent a couple years of her childhood attending East Knox, Tonia has also laid roots in Wyandot county , graduating from Upper Sandusky high school before going on to attend Ohio State University. When she’s not advocating for family rights, or grinding in the gym five days a week, she enjoys reading, cooking, perusing the adult beverage aisle at our local Kroger, and having a glass of red wine with her Girls - Rose, Blanche, Dorothy and Sophia. Her other loves - Cisco (Shepherd mix), Molly (Border Collie/Jack Russell mix), Chessie (Boxer mix), and Rocky the cat round out the Welker residence, leaving little to no room for tranquil days and peaceful nights. And even though she loves tropical vacas and dreams of one day exploring Europe and Hawaii, for now, her hot tub is her happy place, and Netflix in Mount Vernon, Ohio, will have to suffice.
Self-proclaimed Super Moms are a dime a dozen these days, but Tonia demonstrates daily - in her personal life and public - that a woman can mother, win the bread, AND crush it in the gym!
Congratulations to our Lashley Training Center’s Member of the Month of June - Tonia Pever Welker!