This is the last email from an awesome former coach, Alison, sent just before she left to start graduate school (published with her permission!).

Today I worked 8 hours of manual labor, covered those 3 sessions, drove to Cambridge to pick up a frustrating high school friend who kept me out despite my wishes, and then burned it up on the dance floor in Allston for two and a half hours by myself while my former classmates were ‘too tired’ to carry on.

I know that a lot of my super strength is just because of my youth… but man, I had incredible stamina. Unparalleled by any of my peers on the dance floor. I was getting cheered for, after a ridiculously active day at two jobs, and it all looked effortless. I didn’t even know I could shake my butt cheeks that way. #innerstrength.

One year ago I read an article talking about how if you let go of crazy rules, and build strength and eat well 70% of the time your body will look much better and you’ll feel much better at the same weight… and after one full year at G, I’m finally getting it. 70% of the time I’m training and eating well. I’ve finally learned that consistency pays off.

I can’t feel great or move great all the time, but generally applying myself at Gymnasium and this programming has created incredible, beautiful miracles in my life. I used to think I couldn’t dance. Now, I can work time-and-a-half and then burn it up afterwards, while getting cheered on by strangers who don’t know me, but who are amazed by my hip mobility and inability to stop twerking all night. It is so empowering. I always wanted to believe I had it in me, but I didn’t have an outlet for it until I met you. Sh**, I could barely squat a year ago. Now I’m doing jump squats while shaking it for an hour at a time, after a long day at two jobs.

Thank you for being the conduit that has let me release the badass woman that is inside of me. I always knew I had it, but I never knew how to channel it.

Much love, so many blessings upon you. Even when life feels like a drag, know that what you do shapes lives in incredible, palpable, sometimes hard to articulate ways.

Be there at 9am working hard. Then, I’m going to rest hard for a few hours, because balance is very important, and you’ve taught me that.

In Strength,


PS My work pants are tight on the legs and loose on the waist, and I like it that way. Better than freaking out about weighing less and wondering if I’m good enough. F*** that. Now, I have real power. Now, the most important job for me will be maintaining this weight and keeping up my strength levels through future years. I want to be the fittest mom on the block, and that’s a challenge that I take very seriously.