In December of 2021, statistics showed that, roughly, only a third of personal trainers out there are women. Due to misconceptions, women in fitness are not regularly perceived as capable or as strong as men in the industry. That’s completely untrue. Strength is multifaceted, and this Women’s History Month, we’d like to highlight some of the ways women in fitness believe strength shows up in their lives.
Our team of women personal trainers consist of three, strong individuals. Sarah Lootah, who grew up in Dubai, joined Wolfpack in summer of 2021, along with Julia Skrobacz of Longhill, New Jersey. And in February of this year we welcomed Carie Contreras who recently moved to the area from Orange County, California.
Together, these women motivate their clients– both men and women– to achieve goals and become the best versions of themselves.
When did you first get into fitness?
Sarah: I’ve been an athlete my whole life. I started swimming at the age of two and joined my first team in second grade. I can’t remember a time without some form of fitness in my life. I first started my journey into women’s personal training as a yoga instructor in 2016. I loved fitness so much. I gained knowledge over the years and wanted to share that with others. Helping people with their fitness and seeing them succeed brings me so much joy!
Julia: I first got into fitness during my junior year of highschool. And I became a personal trainer last summer.
Carie: I first got into fitness when I was four. I grew up a competitive cheerleader my whole life. I became a women’s personal trainer because I have such a love for training, and training people to become the best version of themselves.
What was an obstacle you faced, as a woman in fitness, and how did you overcome it?
Julia: When I first became interested in fitness I watched lots of videos of influencers on Instagram. I wanted to be able to lift weight like they did, but was intimidated by the thought of going to a commercial gym because of the amount of people. I had no idea what I was doing and if my form was correct. I overcame this by hiring a personal trainer and the rest is history. I felt a lot more confident having a trainer with me who taught me the fundamentals, and now I’m one of the women personal trainers at Wolfpack.
Carie: An obstacle I have faced as a woman in fitness is just being confident in my abilities. I’ve overcome it by realizing that I’m a strong woman and confidence comes within yourself and not from anyone else.
“I’m always striving to be better than I was a year ago, a month ago, a day ago.”- Sarah
Have you broken a boundary of any sort, as a woman in fitness?
Julia: I am the first person in my family to compete in powerlifting.
Carie: As a competitive cheerleader, I won the world championships in 2013.
What would you say is a misconception about women in fitness?
Sarah: I think a misconception about women in fitness is that lifting makes you less feminine. Weight lifting is for everyone and especially important for women to increase bone density as they age.
Julia: Carbs will make you fat, lifting heavy makes you bulky. It’s not true.
Carie: A misconception about women in fitness is the stereotype that women shouldn’t/can’t lift heavy because we will get super bulky. My goal is to be the strongest I can be and lift heavy no matter what. I’ve seen for years that women get scared to lift because of that stereotype and I don’t agree with it at all.
Who is your female role model?
Sarah: My mom because she works so hard and is the strongest person that I know. She is always giving herself to help others and to be there for those around her. I have always looked up to her.
“Fitness is a journey. You don’t have to be the best at the start, all you have to do is show up everyday for yourself. Everything will come in time.”- Julia
Favorite female fitness IG account to follow:
Julia: @Miranda Cohen
Carie: @Jordyn Trenholm
What advice would you give to your younger self about fitness and strength?
Sarah: I would tell my younger self to listen to her body. If you need to rest, rest. If you can push harder, do it. I’d also say to stay consistent because at the end of the day it’s all about showing up.
Julia: All the mistakes are trial and error. They are part of making progress. If you do not fail, you are not learning anything.
Carie: You are stronger than you think and you can do anything you set your mind on.
What’s one thing you wish every woman knew about themselves/their capabilities?
Sarah: I wish women knew how capable they are. Women are so strong and have infinite potential. You can do it. You’re never too old, too inflexible, too uncoordinated, too anything to start.
Julia: Anyone can achieve their fitness goals with consistency.
“I wish everyone knew that they are so much stronger than they think.”- Carie
How has fitness impacted other parts of your life?
Sarah: Fitness has brought so much to my life. Not only does it help my mental health, it also gives me energy. I have gained lifelong friends from sports and fitness. I also have a great relationship with my body and confidence in myself because I know how capable I am. I am grateful for what my body allows me to do and know that I can get through all life throws at me.
Julia: Most of my friends are personal trainers/compete in powerlifting, especially women’s personal training. I go to a powerlifting gym so most of my friends share the same interests as me and we talk about training and lifting every day.
Carie: Fitness has definitely impacted my confidence. I have never felt more confident and comfortable with myself, ever.
Sarah: Strength is pushing through even when it gets tough. Strength is getting back up and trying again. It’s showing up and giving your best.
Julia: Strength is both physical and mental. I feel that a large part of lifting is mental because yes, you can have the physical strength, but if you do not believe in yourself, you might not be successful.
Carie: Strength is power.
Sarah: Health to me is feeling good in my body and having energy to do all that I want in life.
Julia: Health is being able to take care of your body through any type of exercise, and making the best nutritional choices for yourself.
Carie: Health is life.
A fun fact about you:
Sarah: I have a goldendoodle named Teddy.
Julia: I ziplined over a breeding marsh of over 100+ gators. The minute we all got to the zipline, the gators all popped their heads out of the water because they heard us. The zipline instructor told us not to let our feet hang. It was terrifying.
Carie: I’m a huge football fan. During football season every Sunday I’m watching the games.
Whether you’re just beginning or are on an existing journey, being a woman in fitness is all about channeling your inner strength. There are truly no limits to what women can do, and our women personal trainers prove that to us every day.