“Have You Met Sarah?” It’s 4:45am, and that pre-dawn blanket of stillness that keeps most of us in our beds in the early morning has been disrupted; not by a screaming ambulance or a crying baby, but by your local mail carrier starting her first two hour cardio training of the day before work…
When Sarah’s not delivering letters, she spends the majority of her time pursuing her passion: working to become a professional figure competitor, and she’s well on her way. Sara has competed in numerous figure competitions, including Miss Hawaiian Tropic 2004, Eugenia Swimwear Bikini Jam 2004, and the OCB Golden Triangle Battle for the Sword, while also developing her training clientele. Sarah works for various nutritional and fitness sponsors, flies around the country to model for companies like Bowflex, and even has time to maintain a website and a Twitter account1. Yet with all of this success, Sarah stays remarkably grounded. Colleagues and peers that know her say Sarah is outgoing and easy to work with, and that despite her success, her ego has not grown with her muscle mass. This humility in the face of achievements comes from the same place as her motivation to stay healthy: her childhood. Sarah describes her childhood as relatively normal with two supportive and loving parents, yet she reveals that she struggled with her weight as a young child. “I was an overweight child,” she confesses. “My parents encouraged me to start exercising through athletics. I wasn’t so receptive at first.” This initial resistance faded as Sarah became involved with cheerleading at the local Catholic school she attended, and she eventually realized a passion for athletics. “Athletics in general have tremendously made my life more rewarding and fun,” Sarah says, and this love would carry her a long way. After realizing she had more of a drive to be on the court playing than on the sidelines cheering, and after noticing she was taller than the whole girls basketball team, Sarah decided to try out. This was when Sarah’s love of athletics turned into a passion. “Soon, I went from a lethargic chubby adolescent to a thin, happy, and athletic teen. I took it to the extreme.” Sarah would go on to play softball and run track in addition to playing basketball in high school, yet Sarah’s favorite and most accomplished sport remained volleyball. It was her skill in volleyball, her unyielding passion for athletics and competition, and her humility in daily life that took the talented young athlete from Pittsburgh out to California University in California, PA. Here she would further refine her athletic skill playing Division II volleyball, and here she would discover the work ethic and dedication that would get her out of the bed at 4:45am years later. Sarah describes the workouts as challenging, saying she would spend “hours on the court practicing,” but this practice would quickly pay off. In her sophomore year of college, Sarah earned what she describes as one of her most memorable honors. “Our team went to the Final Four my sophomore year of college,” she says. “It was a great experience that I will never forget.” Even in the face of overwhelming athletic achievement, Sarah found the humility and energy to hit the books and stay grounded in her academic work. Sarah graduated from California University in 2003 with honors, and takes pride in earning her degree in Education while also being so competitive athletically. “I did really well in college,” Sarah explains, “and I graduated Summa Cum Laude.” Her academic and athletic excellence obviously made her a hot commodity for job recruiters after graduation. Of course, in Sarah’s typical highly motivated style, she didn’ ...
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