Student Highlight: Cindy Lane Ross |

Mar 25, 2020 1:29:09 PM | student highlight Student Highlight: Cindy Lane Ross |

ACHS Master of Science in Holistic Nutrition student Cindy Lane Ross is a holistic health business owner who doesn't let Rheumatoid Arthritis get in her way.

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Pictured: Cindy and her husband

Cindy Lane Ross was diagnosed with Rheumatoid Arthritis at age 19, putting an end to her time as a professional tennis player. But, she didn't let it stop her from reaching new heights with her goals. Today, she is a business owner, a full time student, a bodybuilder,  and has successfully kept her Rheumatoid Arthritis in remission for 3 years. “My mom and my dad and my brother--they all died of autoimmune diseases, mostly of what I have. They didn’t take care of themselves. It really inspired me to be my best. To just be really healthy and passionate,” Cindy says. 

Cindy is working towards her Master of Science in Holistic Nutrition degree. She also has four companies, including a social media marketing company called Socialize Your Bizness, and a travel business. Her husband is in real estate, and he and Cindy are also personal trainers. "I like having a lot on my plate. It keeps my mind busy and it keeps me well,” she says.

Change for the better

IMG_2068Cindy recalls the moment in her life when she knew that she wanted to change her health for the better: “Back in 2005, I was at my heaviest at 227 pounds...I had been diagnosed for about 5 years with Rheumatoid Arthritis. I had had about fifteen surgeries at that point, and I just knew that I wanted to be on the better side of genetics.”

At that point, Cindy says she never looked back. “ I went to school and got my Bachelor’s in exercise science. I started an outdoor boot camp that turned into a full gym facility. It was amazing. My husband was able to leave the corporate world after 25 years and come on board with me, and we grew it into a 2000 square foot complex. When I sold it in 2016, we had 23 employees.”

Cindy explains that her focus for clients at the gym facility went further than just weight loss:

“Our focus was not just on weight loss but more quality of life, because I had experienced it myself. Being on the bad side, I knew what having a good quality of life meant. I really wanted to help others achieve that.”




Cindy and her husband sold their gym facility in 2016, but both still work as personal trainers. In addition, Cindy has found a new passion: Bodybuilding.

"I have been medication-free now for about three years and found bodybuilding. When I was eleven years old I had a friend teach me about weightlifting," she says. She explains that she wasn't able to weightlift in the past because it conflicted with being a professional tennis player. Then, when when her tennis career was over, she couldn't life because of Rheumatoid Arthritis.

With the arthritis finally in remission, Cindy was finally able to realize her dream. "After all those years, at 42 years old I am lifting and competing and coaching clients all over the world in competition,” she says.

‘I’ve been in remission since pretty much 2012 and then when I decided to start competing, I came off the medication completely to try to balance it through diet and exercise and it’s so far successful,” Cindy explains. 

During the process of learning to improve her health through diet and exercise is when Cindy decided to go back to school. "I  knew that it was my passion. This is just a stepping stone. I want to get my doctorate and go all the way with it,” she says.

Advice for a busy schedule

Cindy talks about how she fits everything into her busy schedule: “I’m not saying it’s easy. During competition season I’m up at 2:30 a.m. every day. During off-season I get up at 4 a.m. and I’m at the gym training from 5 a.m. to 6:30 a.m., and then we train clients from 7 a.m. to 10 a.m. every morning. So it’s a balance.”  Even with her busy schedule, Cindy says that she has read 96 books in the past year, not including books for class. 

Her advice for people who don't think they can fit more into their routine? “Set your alarm for 30 minutes earlier each day. At the end of the day, you’re pulled in 70 different directions. When I try to get my work done later in the day, it usually ends up not happening.” 

Life Wellness Forever

Cindy's business Life Wellness Forever focuses on hormone balancing, fitness, nutrition and functional medicine.

She says, “I really want to focus on hormone balancing and autoimmune diseases. Where we live is a retirement destination. They are older and many have a hormone imbalance. I want to be so blunt and honest about hormones. Erectile dysfunction, menopause, things that people are so afraid to talk about. But it’s life and it happens.”

Cindy says that her doctor told her “'If you’re going to have Rheumatoid Arthritis, do something positive with it.' And so I did. I do say it’s the best part of me because it inspires me to live my best life every day.”

You can find Life Wellness Forever on Instagram here.

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Disclosure of Material Connection: I am the social media coordinator for the American College of Healthcare Sciences, the Institution that publishes this blog. However, all opinions are my own. This blog may contain affiliate links. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.” 

This article is for informational purposes only. It is not intended to treat, diagnose, cure, or prevent disease. This article has not been reviewed by the FDA. Always consult with your primary care physician or naturopathic doctor before making any significant changes to your health and wellness routine. 

About American College of Healthcare Sciences

ACHS-Building-ExteriorFounded in 1978, is a Portland, Ore.-based, accredited college offering online, on-campus, and study abroad integrative health education. With undergraduate and graduate degrees, diplomas, certificates, and continuing education units in integrative health, ACHS makes holistic health and wellness education accessible to a diverse community, including healthcare professionals, military students, stay-at-home parents, and lifelong learners. Specializations include aromatherapy, herbal medicine, holistic nutrition, and integrative health. ACHS is a Certified B Corporation® and was named two of 100 Best Green Workplaces in Oregon 2017 by Oregon Business magazine. ACHS is also accredited by the Distance Education Accrediting Commission (DEAC), which is recognized by the U.S. Department of Education and by the Council for Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA). In response to our commitment to service members, veterans and military spouses, ACHS has been designated as one of the top 16% of military-friendly institutions in the U.S. for nine years in a row. For more information visit

Gillian Turner

Written By: Gillian Turner

Gillian joined ACHS after graduating from Linfield College with a BA in Mass Communication and a minor in visual studies. She grew up off the grid in rural southern Oregon and spent time exploring the forest surrounding her house and teaching gardening classes to other children in her garden. While at Linfield, Gillian gained valuable experience in public relations, social media management, and digital art. She was awarded a strategic communication scholarship and inducted into Kappa Tau Alpha, a national college honor society “that recognizes academic excellence and promotes scholarship in journalism and mass communication.” When not at work, Gillian can most often be found making art, enjoying nature or drinking coffee with her husband, Preston. Her interests include sustainability, mental wellness, and trying to stay connected to nature while living in the city. She studied abroad at the National University of Ireland, Galway, and has traveled to over ten different countries. Her favorite place that she has visited is the Scottish Highlands, and she hopes to visit many more countries in the future.