By day, Areva Martin is an award-winning attorney and both a founding and managing partner at one of LA’s top law firms, Martin & Martin. Her legal expertise makes her a highly sought after media personality, with appearances on CNN, The Doctors, MSNBC and Good Morning America, just to name a few.
By day, Martin is also a leading voice in autism advocacy. Through her nonprofit, Special Needs Network, Martin has raised millions of dollars for autism and provided services to more than 35,000 families, making SNN California’s premiere grassroots autism organization. She is also a wife, mother of three, sisterfriend and a host of other daily roles that could fall into the category of ‘I’m every woman.’
Her days, if you couldn’t tell, are extremely long. But surprisingly, the thing that sends her stress through the roof isn’t the 16 hours days, or the pressures that come with complex and high-profile cases. Just a few years ago, Martin discovered stress where most people go to relieve theirs: the gym.
“One day I just went in there and said, ‘I just hate this! I’m just gonna start walking in my own neighborhood,” Martin tells BlackDoctor.org in a recent interview.
Instead of fighting with traffic to get to the gym, dealing with the crowds and germs on the equipment, Martin took the advice of a good friend and traded the gym for the pavement.
Never the athletic type, she started slow. Walk a block. Run a block. Walk a block. Run a block.
Making health a priority was something new. Martin confesses that like a lot of Black women she grew up in a household where they fried chicken, made macaroni and cheese, and there wasn’t much emphasis on exercise or movement. She grew up on Grandma’s cooking, “and not focused on health.”
“For me I came to health and wellness I’ll say as an adult after having had my kids and after having yo-yo’d back and forth with diets,” Martin explains.