Get to Know the ZUM Team – Jordan Sahlberg

Jordan Sahlberg ZUM Fitness Trainer


How did you find your way to ZUM?  


As many of you know, a couple years ago Joe began plans to open his own private training studio. As his studio got closer to reality, he began searching for a trainer to work with him. I applied for the position, went through the interview process, and, fortunately, got the job! Of course, Joe ultimately opted to stay at ZUM and step into the role of General Manager, so I followed suit and became a professional fitness coach at ZUM.


Here you are over a year later teaching classes, training clients, and creating goofy nicknames for members and staff alike. You’ve been an awesome addition to the team! What do you like best about working at ZUM?


Easy, the people.  Both clients and coworkers.  I love the people and the environment they create.


Couldn’t agree more! What got you into fitness and personal training?


I was always active as a kid. I grew up playing soccer, and I was out experiencing the outdoors as far back as I can remember. My dad took me out hiking and camping all the time. Being active was a huge part of my life, so fitness had a real practical application for me.

Academically, the body fascinates me. Breaking down and studying human biomechanics and physiology and how they relate to physical performance is one of my favorite things. I also love working with people, so personal training seemed like the perfect combination!


Speaking of the outdoors, you are known as quite an avid climber often going out every weekend! How did you get into climbing?


Again, my dad inspired me. As a kid, I remember him climbing Rainier, and I declared, “I’m going to do that when I’m older.” When I was 18, we did just that. Rainier was my first big climb and really ignited my passion.


Do you have a favorite climb?


There are so many!  Trying to pick a favorite climb is like asking someone to chose their favorite child.  I love skiing Mt Baker every spring and summer. But my favorite mountain to ski is going to have to be the North side of mount Adams.  Love that place!


What’s the craziest thing that’s happened during all your outdoor pursuits?


I’ve had my fair share of crazy things and close calls, especially when I was younger.  I would say being buried in an avalanche and chased by a bear are the two that come to mind most readily…not at the same time though – thank goodness!


What? Are these crazy adventures the inspiration for your entertaining cuing in your classes?


Ha! Maybe! While it’s not really a cue, when I am incorporating something like mountain climbers or a running-in-place exercise, I make up a story and tell participants to imagine being stocked by a bear or a mountain lion.  Each time the movement gets more difficult, I yell at them that the bear/lion is getting closer! I usually add in they’ve lost a shoe but keep running, and they have to jump a fence to get to safety.  It’s a silly, ridiculous tale I tell to provide some levity and unexpected humor while exercising.


What’s something about you we might not know?


I’m working on a whisky distillery start up.


That is surprising! How did you get into that?


I grew up brewing beer. I was 16 when I brewed my 1st batch (my parents had a home brew kit and they thought I was joking when I said I was going to use it). I really enjoyed the process and kept churning out batches well into college. I grew to love whisky, so much so that when I graduated from grad school, my family gifted me a membership to the Scotch Malt Whisky Society. I had access to high quality scotch whisky and I grew to love it even more and began hatching plans for my own distillery.  I have since made two separate trips to Scotland for business and pleasure.


What’s your guilty pleasure?


Very easily whiskey. However, if we’re talking food, I love good-quality, fresh rosemary bread. I’ve been known to each a whole loaf with butter after getting back from a long excursion.


Do you have any words of advice for our members?


I would say, “don’t be afraid to use me as a resource.” I do a lot of personal training, but my job isn’t just to do that.  It’s to act as support for all of our members in whatever ways that I can.  Feel free to send me an e-mail with any questions you may have about anything related to your personal fitness goals. Feel free to talk to me in the gym when I’m roaming around.  I can’t claim to have all of the answers, but I might be able to point you in the right direction.  I’m always happy to help and my door is always open.