“I stumbled across training with Sarah by chance: I followed her on social media as I knew her from Zumba and she offered a limited-time session spot to learn strength training basics. I started with her the week of Thanksgiving 2017 and am happy to say I am still with her now a few months later! Under her guidance, I train with a couple of other 50+ women two days a week, and I really look forward to those sessions. I walk out of the gym like I worked out, but not dead!
“My main objectives with Sarah originally were to learn proper techniques so I could eventually train at home and gain some strength. I assist in the full-time care of my Dad and, as he gets weaker with age/illness, I need to be stronger, both physically and mentally. I find that weight training gives me a feeling of empowerment and an overall better balance and focus mentally. It relieves stress and is fun! And I think I have gotten a little stronger!
“I feel confident that I can perform many of the same moves at home as we do in the gym. Sarah’s clear instruction and cues have provided me with a solid base to build upon, even with moves that I struggle with. And that’s the other big thing with her: she patiently works with you on things that you can’t quite yet grasp. For example, I cannot seem to do a proper row, like a simple bent-over dumbbell row. It’s super frustrating, but Sarah is persistent and really pulls from her experiences with other clients to try to find “the cue” that will click in my brain. We try different variations from her bag of tricks to see what will work.
“Sarah is a great communicator and an even greater listener. A large part of my success and our success as a coach/client team is attributed to the verbal back-and-forth during sessions. She is always questioning: how does that feel, do have any more reps in you, are you breathing, etc.
“She says she learns as much from me as I do from her and that my feedback benefits her for future clients. I love that!
“Something else that I have learned from Sarah that I, at this age, should already know is that lifting is not linear. I’m not always going to increase weight at each session. Some days I just don’t feel “as strong” as others, and I feel disappointed if I don’t meet or exceed the last session. Worse yet, I am disappointed if I cannot lift as much or do as well as the others in our training group. That’s on me and a mental hurdle I’ll have to work through. Sarah is quick to correct me when the negative self-talk starts and offers praise whenever possible. I appreciate that more than she realizes because I never knew how negative my thoughts were (concerning myself, especially weight) and it’s ridiculous. She’s relayed stories of her own struggles and has made working with her very relatable, although I am not in her age-range peer group.
“Another aspect of my training that I really like is exactly that: it is MY training session. She’s there to guide and instruct, but she gives me the freedom to push myself as hard as I want…as long as it is safe and in form. One day, a group member was deadlifting quite a bit heavier than me and I asked to try one rep at 185 pounds. She let me try. That rep was in not-so-great form and she wouldn’t let me try it twice, but she did allow me to just see if I could do it and I appreciated that.
“My objectives of technique and strength still top the list, but mobility and functional strength are now added. I’ve also dropped a main goal of seeing the scale say ‘X’ number of pounds. That number won’t make a damn bit of difference in my life nor should it. I just want to be strong in all aspects of my life, and Sarah will help me get there!”