FRIDAY'S FEATURED FRIEND!

I met Sammi at a local gym that I worked at when I first moved to San Diego about 3 years ago.  Watching her transform herself into EXACTLY what she wants to be has been amazing! She is strong, energetic and just full of "the stuff" you are looking for to make your life THAT much more fun! Here is her story and I hope you read between the lines because ANYONE can transform themselves into a bona fide athlete again or for the first time.  Read her story. . .and start moving in the right direction. . .your direction!  

"Let me start out by saying, I am an ATHLETE! I am strong, powerful, fast and a MACHINE. I believe it and I want to be this way forever:  for myself, my family and my friends. I’m not vane, just proud of what I’ve accomplished and look forward to the challenges that await me every day. I was an athlete BC (before children), made school records with running, was a long jump, high jump and shot-put champ. I played volleyball in high school and softball in college. My athletic “heroes” were Marion Joyner and Jackie Joyner-Kersee! Somehow, that athlete took a 10 year hiatus. It took me 5 years to find her again.

I started out on my fitness quest back in 2005. Like your typical “dieter” I didn’t enjoy getting motion sickness on the weight-loss roller coaster. Weighing in at 225lbs, initially I lost 14 pounds, moved to California in 2006, gained back 7 pounds, joined the local meat-market gym, lost 3 pounds, so on and so forth.  In 2007, I left that meat-market and stumbled across a fitness facility that, literally, changed my life. I was never one for an all female gym because, let’s face it ... it doesn’t matter how out of shape or in shape you are, it’s nice to see some nice “shapes” lifting those weights and showing off to those skinny chicks. Ugh... Those skinny chicks... I wanna be one! So... back to the gym... my saving grace. The place where I formed deep friendships rediscovered the competitive athlete that was locked away inside for at least 10 years and found my love for the bike and running which, in turn, helped me start my goal to fitness.

I love the bike now, but HATED it then. Are you kidding me! So yeah, I went out and bought those $90 pair of cycling shoes and that ridiculous padded diaper-shorts and, yes, that too-tight jersey... anything to force me in and on! So, what happened? 3 months later (and 15 pounds down), I’m going to RPM indoor cycling training because I LOVE the bike and I signed up for my first 5K (Big jump from loathing huh?). The beat is in my veins; the music drives me and pushes me forward. The joy in the faces of the members who’ve become an extension of my family motivated me. I saw a better me starting to emerge and I wanted more of that.

I LOVE to teach. I LOVE to ride. I LOVE to run. I LOVE helping people find and create a better version of themselves, a version to be proud of. I don’t want to be that “Skinny Chick” anymore because I LOVE this new/old me and want everyone to feel that same love for themselves because, there’s nothing better than being loved so, why not start with you? You can’t give up because your life depends on it! Your happiness depends on it! Aim for an improved version of you, and be realistic with your short-term goals and everything else will fall into place. Find that class, find a workout buddy, find that gym that becomes an extension of your family, hold on tight and enjoy the ride.
Just... Get in. Clip On. And Ride Hard!"