After almost 12 years on the ZUM team, Lydia Zwiebel is saying goodbye to embark the next chapter of her career – a Shoreline-based training and outdoor class business of her own, Outshine Fitness. We will miss having Lydia’s talent and positive energy at ZUM, but know she’s going to rock Outshine Fitness! Upon hearing Lydia was departing, I sat down with her to learn more about her time at ZUM, what she’ll miss most, and what the future holds. I hope you enjoy a little time with Lydia as much as I did.
How did you first find your way to ZUM?
I was a trainer in Seattle working at a spinal cord injury clinic in Redmond and getting really tired of the commute, so I stared looking at other places. I was totally intrigued by ZUM and the sand pit. I was really nervous during my interview and while training Molly, but it was super fun. Once I was on the team, I felt like I was instantly welcomed into a family by the house trainers, members, front desk staff, yoga instructors – everybody,
You’ve played a lot of different roles and taught a variety of classes over the years, right?
Yeah, I was a house trainer for years before becoming an independent contractor. I started out teaching cycling, playing a lot of hard rock during my rides. As I recall, Bronwen was not a fan. 🙂 I also taught Body Definitions. Then there was Ski and Snowboarding Conditioning which was super fun! I developed Paddle Power too – long before paddle boarding was trendy. I rented long boards and we met in Madison Park for a dry land training followed by paddling around Lake Washington on surfboards. Then I led a stand up paddle board class in Ballard too.
So awesome! I forget sometimes that you’re super bad-ass and into surfing and other cool things.
Ha! Yeah, I’ve always super active and found myself drawn to less-traditional sports like BMX bike racing, soccer, skiing, snowboarding, and surfing. It was my passion for movement and physical activity that lead me to pursue training. It’s my love of the outdoors that’s inspired the development of my new business – Outshine Fitness.
Tell us more about Outshine Fitness!
We’re so lucky to live in the Pacific Northwest where we can be outside 12 months out of the year and enjoy the diversity of all four seasons. I want to encourage people to appreciate that and soak it in while working out outside, so Outshine Fitness will primarily focus on year-round, outdoor, high intensity interval classes. I’m hoping people will embrace the spirit of adventure and be open to experiencing the added benefits of working out outside – cleansing fresh air and connecting with the elements and nature.
Sounds incredible! We really excited for you, but really sad to see you go! You must have a lot funny stories and fond memories of ZUM after 12 years. Would you share a few with us?
One of the funniest things I can remember was one time when a member forgot her workout pants, but that wasn’t going to stop her getting her workout in. She walked right up to the cardio loft (in the old space) in just her underwear. I could not stop laughing. I told Joe, who ended up approaching her and telling her we have a lost and found full of clothes she would be more than welcome to borrow. I loved the way we handled it as a team…and that she was comfortable enough at ZUM to just workout in underwear.
Another thing I loved was on Fridays we used to have monthly all-staff workouts. They could be anything – yoga with Cosetta, hip hop with Brian Bucsit, movement with Elia. They’d bring in people from the outside too for things like gyrotonics or break dancing. For the Hawaiian themed ZUM Games, we learned a traditional Hawaiian slap dance and performed it for all the members. That was amazing.
One of my all-time favorite ZUM memories is from the Western-themed ZUM Games. Our manager at the time somehow arranged for a mechanical bull to be at ZUM as the final challenge for the top qualifying teams. 2 guys I trained were among the top teams and got to ride the mechanical bull. They got bucked off right away and blamed me for insufficient core training. Apparently, my mechanical bull training was not up to snuff.
Such great memories! A lot has changed for you personally over your tenure at ZUM too.
Yeah, my life has changed a lot. I was dating my husband when I started at ZUM, but we bought a house, got engaged, got married, had two kids, and, most recently, our dog who’s been with it through it all just died. Quite a journey.
What will you miss most about ZUM?
The stand out thing for me is the people who make up ZUM: the members, the staff. It’s such an eclectic group – all kinds of people from all walks of life who all seem to have a common spirit, humor, and appreciation for movement and wellness. I know that’s what I’m going to miss most about ZUM.
As you begin this new chapter, what are you looking forward to the most?
Getting outdoors, soaking up the beauty that’s around us here in the Pacific Northwest, and embodying the spirit of adventure! Less time commuting, less time in a car and more time to focus on what really matters like my family and practicing what I preach.