Guess what, we’ve got a new feature for you guys! We’re constantly inspired by the women and girls we see on Instagram who show their awesome athleticism and dedication to sports. So we decided to start sharing some of these women with you! GladiatHers® of Instagram will highlight some women and girls we think you should take a look at and follow for inspiration on staying healthy, being fit and being positive. Our first GladiatHers® of Instagram hails from Liberty City, Miami. With 3,034 followers (and counting) she is the epitome of strength and tenacity. Meet Th33BestICanBe…
We know from Instagram that your handle is Th33BestICanBe, but what is your real name?
My name is Tawanya Norwood (pronounced Tuh- juan- nuh).
What activities do you share on Instagram?
I’m a runner, yogi, and inline skater, so my Instagram page is reflective of that.
Wow, three sports, how’d you get involved in them?
I started skating when I was a child. As an adult I picked it up again as an alternate means of transportation instead of walking or catching the bus. The first time I started purposefully running was in 9th grade during P.E. class. We had to run a mile every week and my P.E teacher was the school’s track coach. Eventually he recruited me to the track team. I maintained a consistent stretch routine throughout high school to stay in shape for track and that laid the foundation for my involvement in yoga. I didn’t officially begin really practicing yoga however, until a few months after creating my Instagram page. That’s when I started looking up yoga poses and researching how to do them in order to increase the athletic skills I performed in my modeling photos.
Why did you decide to use Instagram as the platform to showcase your athleticism?
Instagram is one of the top sites for uploading pictures so it’s the best place to display my posing and photo- taking talents. Additionally, when I first told my friends about my dream of becoming a sports model with Nike or another agency, one of them suggested I use Instagram to draw Nike’s attention because companies such as them look on that platform to scout talent or possible advertising material. I took her advice and ran with it and here I am!
Nice. Outside of earning yourself a modeling gig, what else do you hope to accomplish with your Instagram account?
I also want to inspire people with my journey. I want them to see my story, my progress and where I end up and be encouraged in their own life. My ultimate goal is to become a motivational speaker so what I’m doing on IG and how I’m doing it is all a part of the story I want to tell in order to inspire others.
Tell us more about your journey, what was it like growing up in Liberty City and how has that impacted your life?
Growing up in Liberty City defined me in that it taught me how to be tough and how to stay focused even in the most challenging of circumstances and environments. It’s not the safest or most ideal place to live and I learned in Liberty City that life is hard and sometimes unfair. Learning those lessons as a child prepared me for taking on the world as an adult and as a dreamer. The biggest thing Liberty City did was shape my attitude toward life. I don’t blame the world too much for my hardships. I’ve learned in Liberty City that that’s just how life is and you have to keep going. You can keep going.
It’s so very important that people see that you truly can overcome circumstances that are less than ideal. Thanks for sharing that with the world. What’s life like outside of Instagram…what do you do professionally until Nike comes a knockin?
Outside of modeling I work in the Athletic Association at the University of Florida (UF). I graduated from UF in 2012 with a bachelor’s degree in Sociology. I started working at the Athletic Association soon after. My main job there is in Human Resources. I studied Sociology in college and I loved that it focused on groups of people. In many of my course assignments I studied the relationship between athletes and society. I learned in my studies that people are really inspired by the feats of athletes and tend to hold them in high esteem. That kind of trigged my idea to use my athletic skills to become an inspiration to others. My studies in Sociology have also helped me with effectively using social media to achieve my dream.
You’re such an inspiration, what else do you want people to know about you?
That I give my best to everything I do and that I’m powerful.
Before you go, where else on social media can people be inspired by your strength, flexibility and determination?
On Tumblr: Th33besticanbe.Tumblr.com
On Pinterest: Pinterest.com/Th33bestIcanbe
On Facebook: Facebook.com/Th33besticanbe
Be sure to follow Tawanya! Trust me, it’ll be worth it. Looking at her rock solid abs will absolutely encourage you to hit the gym and/or put down those fries.