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Smith: South Fayette natives seek to help others

| Friday, Oct. 20, 2017, 11:00 p.m.
Ashley Boynes-Shuck is an author, blogger, health advocate, and social media consultant. Her husband, Mike Shuck, is a teacher, author, personal trainer, and brand ambassador. They were both raised in South Fayette but now reside in Green Tree.
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Ashley Boynes-Shuck is an author, blogger, health advocate, and social media consultant. Her husband, Mike Shuck, is a teacher, author, personal trainer, and brand ambassador. They were both raised in South Fayette but now reside in Green Tree.

Ashley Boynes-Shuck is an author, blogger, health advocate, and social media consultant. Her husband, Mike Shuck, is a teacher, author, personal trainer, and brand ambassador. They were both raised in South Fayette but now reside in Green Tree.

Several years ago, while teaching fifth grade at Aiken Elementary in Green Tree, Mike Shuck published a children's book titled “Numbers Elementary.”

It taught children the mathematical concept of rounding numbers, but also carried an anti-bullying message.

His book is available on Amazon and through publisher Rocket Science Productions.

He is a kettlebell instructor and personal trainer for children and adults at Pittsburgh Kettlebell & Performance in Green Tree.

Some of his students have participated in his kettlebell class.

He wants to inspire his students to lead a healthy lifestyle into adulthood and, if they see an adult being physically active, then they can view their goals as achievable.

Some readers may have seen Mike Shuck on television when he competed on seasons 8 and 9 of NBC's “American Ninja Warrior.” Last year he made it to the Philadelphia City qualifiers and, this year, he advanced even further into the Cleveland finals.

Ashley Boynes-Shuck recently was featured in the International LION Magazine and serves as secretary and zone chairperson for the Robinson Lions Club, as well as sitting on the board of directors for Wear Woof, an animal welfare nonprofit. She is a freelance social media consultant for other corporate clients.

When Ashley Boynes-Shuck was 10, she was diagnosed with juvenile rheumatoid arthritis. This marked the beginning of a list of nearly 40 chronic ailments in her medical history as she grew up, including this year getting her right knee joint totally replaced.

She has confronted her medical issues with humor and prayer, living as best she can, and focusing on her individual journey to recovery from these “invisible illnesses.”

Her experiences have led to her authoring three books in 2015 and 2016, entitled “Sick Idiot,” “To Exist,” and “Chronically Positive.”

The latter two are nonfiction health memoirs. She blogs about her issues in “Arthritis Ashley” and “Glitzburgh” and works with a health nonprofit called the Autoimmune Registry.

Healthline named her blog as one of the best rheumatoid arthritis blogs of 2017 as she shares the highs and lows of living with arthritis and gives her followers information on the latest research and news.

Her advocacy has led her to speak before Congress, appear on various television shows, and Oprah Winfrey has tweeted her to congratulate her on helping others to emerge from pain.

A portion of her book sales goes to health and animal causes as well as literary organizations, human rights funds, botanic societies, and education groups.

“I would encourage people to get involved in charities and volunteerism however they can, whether it is donating time or money, for causes that matter to them the most,” Ashley Boynes-Shuck said. “Live as best as you can and take responsibility for your health and life.”

For more information and inspiration, visit Ashley's website at abshuck.com.

Charlotte Smith is a Tribune-Review contributing writer. Reach her at 724-693-9441 or charlotte59@comcast.net.

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