Fitness: Exercise Your Options
Meet Your MentorSarah Bowen Shea
What She Does: A freelance health and fitness writer, Sarah writes often for publications including Real Simple, Shape, SELF, Living Fit, and Parenting (she has a 3-year-old daughter). She runs, swims, does Pilates, works out at a gym, and has completed several marathons, triathlons, and adventure races.
Why She Does It: "My dad always said, 'Let your avocation be your vocation,' and I think I'm successful writing about health, fitness, and athletics because I actually do what I write about. That said, I wasn't much of a jock when I was an editor at City Sports. In fact, when I was getting ready to do a century (100 mile) bike ride, an event where something called a 'sag wagon' picks up the exhausted, my supportive coworkers said 'sag' stood for 'Sarah's a goner'! My family was all about reading, and I didn't really get exposed to sports as a kid. I'm also really tall and was kind of uncoordinated, so I always felt dorky in P.E. class. I accidentally got into crew in college. The crew coach sent me a note -- which I'm sure he did to everyone five foot ten and over -- and because I wanted to get into the school, I went for it and wound of up loving it.
Word from the Wise: "When I'm going up a hill or pushing out a heavy rep, I always tell myself that this tough or maybe even slightly unpleasant moment is just a moment. I felt fine five minutes ago and will again in another five. Workouts have taught me that, and I remember it in every aspect of life -- when something goes wrong in my work or even with things like my first husband leaving me. We are all a lot stronger than we think we are."