This week we’d like you to meet Sarah, who joined Farmgirlfit in September 2012, and has made tremendous strides ever since. This summer, as the only Farmgirlfit competitor in the Women’s Division of Fittest in the Park, Sarah won the first event and placed 4th overall! A couple weeks ago, she broke her foot playing softball, but hasn’t let that slow her down, continuing to come in on a regular basis and keeping up with her pull-ups for our charity fundraiser.
Name and age: Sarah Depue, 34
Occupation: Surgical Account Executive for Ecolab Healthcare
When I see ________ on the board at Farmgirlfit, I get happy.
“One-rep clean-and-jerk max”. Love it!
When I see _____ on the board at Farmgirlfit, I groan and think about running away.
Turkish get-ups. I would rather clean toilets.
Tell us about your fitness journey.
Until I got to college I really didn’t have to think about fitness because I was so involved in competitive sports. I played three sports all the way through high school and played volleyball for a time in college. I was used to very intense workouts, but I was also accustomed to not having to think much about them because my they were all scheduled for me by coaches and trainers, and I was highly motivated by the drive to succeed in my sport.
Once I stopped competing on the collegiate level, I struggled to find a good balance between work, personal time and exercise. My fitness definitely suffered. The lowest point in my physical fitness was a little over five years ago, just after my wedding. I had gained a significant amount of weight. I was not exercising, and was, let’s just say, less than discriminating about what I ate. Without competitive sports, I really didn’t know how to work exercise into my life.
I suppose that this was the true beginning of my fitness journey. This was the point at which I decided that enough was enough. I started by walking a little bit every day. I figured that at that point, weight loss was my main goal, and that in the most basic, sense, it was a math problem. Calories consumed vs. calories burned. If I just walked a couple of miles a day and changed nothing else, I would be at a net loss. It was a small change in my routine, but it quickly made a huge difference. I think I only lasted a couple of weeks walking before I started running. Running had always been a part of my training and of my life, and this felt much more natural to me than walking. Little by little, I started to feel better, make better food choices and lose some weight.
Why did you initially join Farmgirlfit? What was your goal when you started?
About a year ago, I was feeling like my fitness had plateaued, and that’s when I joined Farmgirlfit. I think that my goal at the time was just to tone my body and take my fitness to a higher level. What I didn’t expect is that after a little over a year I would be in better shape than I was when I was 18 and playing Division I college volleyball. I have never felt better.
What has been your greatest fitness (performance) accomplishment so far? Do you have a performance goal?
Up until a couple of weeks ago when I broke my foot, I hadn’t missed a single day of running in nearly 4 1/2 years. I think that my goal moving forward is to be continually improving — always running faster, always lifting heavier weight. I would love to qualify for the Boston Marathon at some point, but that’s a very long-term goal. It may be a bit of a pipe dream, but I would love to do it … someday. I would also like to be better at the anaerobic exercises that we do at FGF. Ooh! And to get a muscle-up!
How has FGF helped you become more healthy / When it comes to your health, what goals do you have?
Wow — in so many ways. I have learned about how hard I can push myself, and that I’m much stronger than I ever thought I was. I am learning so much more about how to properly fuel my body, and the importance that good nutrition plays in my ability to work out. I would like to continue to work to be leaner and stronger.
My favorite thing about Farmgirlfit is ________
I love the way that I feel when I leave the gym. It’s always such a high, and so worth the pain … even if it is Turkish get-ups. Also the sense of community and support. I have been especially grateful to be a part of FGF these past two weeks. When I broke my foot I was concerned that I would be able to do next to nothing in terms of working out, but the trainers at Farmgirlfit have been incredible. They have happily helped me to modify all of the movements so that I can fully participate in the workouts. I really can’t overstate how much I have appreciated their support and encouragement.
How have you integrated the Farmgirlfit mission outside of the gym?
I travel often for work and I always exercise when I’m on the road. I often find Crossfit gyms in other cities and drop in. Also, I don’t remember the last time I told anyone “no” to a request to work out.
What do your off-days look like?
Until a couple of weeks ago, I didn’t take off-days. I always got a run in. Even if it was just a couple of miles. As I have been forced into taking a break from my usual routine, I am really learning to appreciate the benefit of letting my body recuperate. Resting a day here and there allows me to put more into my workouts, and to get more out of them, as well.