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Breakthrough Spotlight – Sarah Rice!

Breakthrough Spotlight – Sarah Rice!

Our Breakthrough Spotlight for August is Sarah!  We sat down with Sarah and chatted about growth mindset, positive body image, and how strength makes your whole life easier.  We are excited to share her story!


Sarah:  Well I actually got started training while I was living abroad before I moved back to LA.  A friend from work opened a gym, and I thought “well, I’ll give it a try” and I really liked it!  Especially working with kettlebells.  So when I moved back home, I was looking for a place nearby that used kettlebells too.  And when I came in here it was a perfect fit!  Everyone was friendly and had similar interests, and it was exactly what I was looking for!

Breakthrough:  Awesome!  Yeah, I remember the day you came in for the first time and you had a Darth Vader wallet and I was like, “I think you’re gonna like it here…”  Haha!  And so you’ve been training with us almost a year now. What are some of the things you are the most excited about in your training?

Sarah:  I’m really excited to see the progress in skills that I didn’t think I’d ever have.  Like, I really did not believe that I’d ever get anywhere near a pull up… like, ever!  But I’m getting a lot closer as we have been practicing them regularly in class and I can really see the progress.  They’re actually coming, and that’s really nice!  It feels like magic…

Breakthrough:  Haha, yeah maybe a little magic but mostly consistent practice on your part!

Sarah:  Well on your own it feels like the only step is to just keep trying to pull up.  But that won’t lead to progress.  I was talking to my students today about having a “growth mindset”, and how if they’re at a place where a certain subject is too hard, and they’re focused on something that is 10 steps ahead of where they are, it can seem like they’re never going to get there.  But if you can break it down, and start at a point that’s easier, you can practice and then grow to the next level.  And with pull ups it never felt like there was an “easy” point for me to start at.  And I wouldn’t have figured that out on my own – that’s why I have you guys!


Breakthrough:  Right.  If you want to get to the third floor of a building, you’re more likely to succeed if you take the stairs rather than trying to just jump up to the third floor.  And I love what you say about having a “growth mindset” because mindset is so key to progress!  So you just got a new job and had to move, and I know you were mentioning that some of your friends where wondering why you would look for an apartment that was close enough that you could still make it here to train…

Sarah:  Yeah I now work 30 miles from the gym and in after-work traffic it can take me an hour and a half to get here.  So some of my friends were like, “what are you doing… why would you go all that way for a gym?”  And my usual response to that is, “This is a body-positive gym… in LOS ANGELES!”  And I feel like that’s all I need to say!  This is the land of stupid obsessive body image, so finding a place where you don’t feel judged when you walk through the door is really nice.

Breakthrough:  That is really important to us, and we are so glad you feel that way!

Sarah:  That alone makes it totally worth it!  Also I know that if I went to a 24 Hour Fitness or something like that I would make no progress.  I wouldn’t know what to do on my own, and I don’t have the time to figure it out.  Again, that’s why I have you guys.

Breakthrough:  And it’s more fun to train in an environment where you are working with other people too.

Sarah:  Oh yeah, training by yourself is the worst.  And it’s just boring.

Breakthrough:  Any advice for someone looking to get started?

Sarah:  I would say not to be afraid to just come.  It doesn’t matter where you’re at, and no one is going to leave you to figure things out on your own.  No one is going to make fun of you.  It’s just so encouraging around here!

Breakthrough:  Yay!  We love that! So, can you share with us your “why”?  What is the deeper reason for why your training is important to you?

Sarah:  Getting stronger is just fun!  Specifically for me it’s about strength, and being able to lift heavy stuff! For example, when I just moved, it was so much easier than it otherwise would have been.  It just makes my whole life easier.  The reason I started training in the first place was that I went on a hike. It was straight uphill, and I was at the back with the smokers, and I thought “this is ridiculous!”  Now I can make it through hikes, and moving, and all sorts of things.  It just makes doing all the other things better, and it’s really satisfying to see your progress.

Breakthrough:  Exactly, it’s satisfying to see your progress in the gym, but more importantly to see how all that translates outside the gym like you said.  We are excited to see you keep going and everything you will accomplish – including at the next Tactical Strength Challenge!

Sarah:  Oh yeah!  I’m excited too!  I’m looking forward to seeing how I do compared to the first time.

Breakthrough:  We can’t wait!  Thanks so much Sarah!

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