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About Me

My name is Sara Fleming and I am a fitness and strength coach. 

I have a bachelor’s degree in biology and a masters degree in biochemistry from Georgetown University and spent 10 years as a medical researcher studying cancer and infectious disease before taking time off to start a family. I am certified through the International Sports Sciences Association and USA Weightlifting as a Certified Fitness Trainer and USA Weightlifting Club Coach and have coached elite powerlifters at the national and world level.  I am also a certified level 1 USA Track and Field coach and have worked with young track athletes, throwers, and coach my sons' middle school cross country team.  

I believe that strength is essential for a sound, functional body. I have found through personal experience, both with myself and others, that appropriate strength and conditioning can make the difference for those of us to whom genetics and biomechanics were not so kind. A balanced training program can prevent injuries, coordinate the uncoordinated, strengthen the weak, and hasten the slow. The foundation of a balanced training program, regardless of the ultimate goal, must be strength. Without strength, our joints cannot support the forces being applied to them, our muscles become unbalanced, and we cannot endure long periods of stress.

My main goal in training is to make it both fun as well as challenging. Being strong gives you more endurance, more energy, makes you run faster, jump higher, play harder, and helps you burn more calories at rest.  For athletes, it helps level the playing field and for everyone else, it contributes to a long healthy and happy life.  Everyone can benefit from getting stronger and anyone can get strong regardless of age or disabilities. 

I coach and train a broad range of ages and abilities and also serve on the ISSA faculty as a course developer, blog author, and adjunct professor.  

Have fun, get strong!

Sara Fleming

*I am currently not accepting new clients, however, I'm always happy to answer any questions you may have in an email, blog post, or article.

Popular posts from this blog

Next Level

So, there are those of us who work out regularly to look and feel better and improve our general health.  There are those of us who just like to lead active lives and enjoy nature and the occasional physical activity.  And then there are those of us who like to challenge themselves to push past our perceived physical limitations and see how far down the rabbit hole we can go.  While this last one is certainly an admirable pursuit, as are the other two, I must say it is the one I most commonly see go sideways.

If you are contemplating taking things to the next level with your training, you must first sit down and realistically assess what you are about to take on.  Next level training is not just about pushing yourself in the gym, but also managing your personal life, your recovery, and your expectations.  It also means knowing when to go low and slow and when to go hard.  The most common mistake a lot of people make is that they think next level means going harder all the time.  But,…

Let's Talk About Context . . .

Powerlifters shouldn't do cardio.Long distance runners should avoid heavy lifting.All explosive athletes should be doing plyometrics, snatches, and cleans.To get fit in all areas of fitness, you should train by doing everything.

Most of us know that the above statements are bombastic nonsense.  However, depending on where you are in the training cycle they can be partly true (which is why a lot of people believe them).  But, for the most part, as general statements about these activities as a whole, they are overwhelmingly false.

I encourage my powerlifters to do cardio.  It increases their work capacity during training sessions and helps recovery, not to mention general health.  How much and how often?  Well, its generally not a lot unless they have a concurrent endurance training goal (which we know will mean they will need a lot more time and managed expectations).  Go for a short jog, a walk, or a bike ride a few times a week, don't sit all day, and don't eat like you&…

The Highland Games

Last summer, I became intrigued by the idea of learning how to throw heavy things.  As a weightlifting coach with unfortunate limb ratios for competitive weightlifting and a few friends who compete in Highland Games (and blather on incessantly about how awesome it is), I was excited to see if throwing might be a good outlet for my training.  I'm relatively strong, can produce a good amount of power, and have long limbs.  However, I am also relatively small compared to most throwers and therefore do not have a mass advantage.  That leaves me with mostly strength and technique as my assets.  Not yet knowing how to throw and not having a coach other than you-tube was going to make the technique part a bit of a challenge.

I didn't really intend to compete in the Highland Games, just use the throws to keep my training fun and set some backyard PRs, but then a friend of mine in Texas decided to host a Highlander.  A Highlander is a hybrid Highland Games and Strongman competition a…