How Sports Continue to Save My Life
Written by Coach Angel Zaragoza
As the world around us continuously diversifies, so do our stories and backgrounds. Some grew up around people who pushed them to be the best version of themselves, others were not so lucky. Some of us grew up surrounded by people and things that were not very uplifting, but destructive in nature; such as gangs, drugs, alcohol, etc. As a kid, I learned from a very young age that one’s own actions can either make you or break you. This was the moment when I decided that sports would be my savior.
Since I could remember, I was always a playful and physically active child. Playing Freeze-Tag and Street-Ball with some of the kids around my neighborhood led to my love of the sport Football. Entering the scary and exciting new world of middle school, the opportunity to play for the school's small flag football team presented itself to me. This was the kickstart to my salvation. While some middle school...
Written By, Coach Giordan Moloian
Roughly three years ago, I unearthed a pair of road shoes from my closet and went for a four mile run out at Whiting Ranch. It had been quite some time since I had plodded along hot pavement with my high school cross country team. It was in the low nineties; the cotton clothing I had on quickly became soaked and heavy. My left calf started going numb halfway in, and my right hip stopped doing its job the last quarter-mile. A few days later, I was back with a new pair of (heavy) trail shoes.
Trail running has done a lot for me. It’s taken me up and down just about every trail in Orange County, as well as several mountains. It’s built an awesome friendship with an extremely talented Spartan Racer. It’s brought me to Fitness on Fire and this amazing community. It’s provided me space and silence for important reflection. It’s also beaten me into the ground on several occasions, reminding me to stay...
Written By, Coach Vanesa Suazo
Doesn’t it seem like there’s always the new latest trend for the best diet that will help you lose those unwanted pounds in record time? New research showing that “this diet” is the one that will give you the results you want. Then there’s always all this conflicting information on whether to eat high or low carb; whether to eat plant based or carnivore ; whether calories matter or they don’t. We’re left conflicted, not really knowing what to do and jumping from one plan to the other, never really getting the results we want. The question is, what actually works? The answer is there isn’t one single diet plan that works, they can all work, it all depends on our lifestyles and what we’re trying to achieve. Oftentimes, I think we fail in reaching our goals, because we don’t posses the skills needed to get there - we’re lacking a good foundation. I believe any nutrition program can work for...
It’s becoming an exciting time, finally! After a long year, we are beginning to see some lasting changes. Restaurants are opening back up, activities are becoming more accessible, and the weather is getting better every day (here in SoCal at least). For some of us, it’s just about the Spartan Races showing up on the calendar!
Spring cleaning is something we are all familiar with, but I am shifting that perspective towards our health, fitness, and wellness. Wintertime starts to drift out of sight, and summer brings exciting new things and a new outlook. How do we spring clean our lifestyle to help us achieve our health and fitness goals? We do that by cleaning up some old habits, setting goals, and maybe even toss out that old bag of crackers in the cupboard!
The area of opportunity for many people is to stay consistent with their nutrition, staying active daily, and the types of choices we make on the weekends! I’m going to give you some tips...
I feel like I should begin this by reminding everyone that I am far from a nutritionist. Or a Coach, for that matter. I’m just a person who wants to feel strong, look good, and eat the occasional slice of cake. So take everything I have to say with a grain of salt (or sugar).
So here’s the thing: we all have our vices. Mine is absolutely sugar--well, and wine, but that’s not what this is about! I used to think I needed to have a dessert after every single meal I ate in a day. Yes, even breakfast. What’s a peanut butter cup at 8am, right? With that mentality, it will probably come as no surprise to anybody that that 8am peanut butter cup became two, and then three, and then four, and so on. And of course, that was only breakfast. Every now and then I’d start feeling sick (both physically and emotionally) by how much sugar I was consuming and I’d have a great plan in place to give up desserts cold turkey. It would always work for a few days,...
Written By, Randi Fehser
There are many values of reading. One might say I am biased since I am an English major and all but there are so many perks to reading. In William G. Brozo’s article, Writing to Learn in the Disciplines, he mentions, “For most teachers and scholars, reading is considered the fundamental skill, the prior skill, the formative skill…” Reading allows us to build skills for many different areas in our lives. It helps us improve our job skills, our communication skills, helps our brains stay active, and to always be learning.
When I was in high school and in my first two years of college, I did not know I wanted to be a high school English teacher yet. I was a liberal study major at first to be an elementary teacher, but realized I wanted to teach the older kids. When I was thinking on changing my major to English Education, one question from other teachers and other professors was if I read. I did not, I always used...
Written By, Jenny De Anda Fast
What if they find out I do not belong here?
What if they realize I am not good enough?
What if they come to me and say that they made a mistake bringing me on to the team?
What if they discover I am a fraud?
These are the thoughts that run through my head everyday I walk into my jobs as a coach at Fitness on Fire and at the RowHouse. At 41 years old I am definitely one of the oldest coaches at both of my workplaces and compound that with having made the career change to being a coach in the last year I often feel a disconnect, a fear, as if I am a sheep in wolves clothing and that someone will eventually notice and yell out that “The Emperor has no clothes”. This is commonly known as Imposter Syndrome, which is defined as a collection of feelings of inadequacy that persist despite evident success. People who see themselves as “imposters” suffer from chronic self-doubt and a sense of...
Written by, Coach Vanessa Panella
Hips Don't Lie
You've probably heard a lot about the deadlift. Maybe ever performed it a few times in the gym. And if you've ever gone to a class or worked with a coach before you definitely done this movement. Have you ever wondered why EVERY coach has taught you this move and had you do it before. Why are we so in love with the hip hinge?
First things first. Let's clarify that there are LOTs of ways to perform the deadlift. Lots of factors go into how coaches decide what too and what position we have you perform. Therefore, all the equipment that is used to perform the deadlift is valid; barbells, trap bar, kettlebells, and sandbags all fit this bill. But, after working for a commercial gym for years, I can tell you that this is the one movement that I got the most push back from clients from.
"I can't do that. I have a bad back."
"I've heard those are bad for you"
"I'm not trying to be a bodybuilder/powerlifter"
Well I'm here...
Nutrition. Perhaps one of the most foundational pieces within a person’s fitness journey. Some say that abs are made in the kitchen, but truthfully I wish it were that simple.
When it comes to making the best choices, obviously it is apparent that you should eat your fruits and dark leafy greens and choose healthy, lean proteins to pair with your complex carbohydrates. But what happens when the cycle of these habits turns to be a bit toxic? Establishing a schedule and a habit of eating healthfully on the daily is not what becomes the problem, but when it becomes an obsession, this might be where one needs to step back and reevaluate your overall life satisfaction.
For years, I succumbed to frugelant eating behaviors and falling into endless cycles of dieting. The desire to be so lean ultimately impaired my overall muscle mass, appearance, and overwhelmed me in my day-to-day living. The truth is, however, that many male and female athletes in their lifetime will...
By, Vanesa Suazo
Do you like to win!? I love to win! Wouldn't it feel good to win everyday? You can set yourself up to win everyday by planning your week in advance.
I'm sure you've heard the saying "Failing to plan is planning to fail," and that saying couldn't be anymore true. Planning your days ahead is the best way to get all your important tasks done and keep your fitness, health and finances in top shape. Let me share with you how I schedule my week.