iGnite Spotlight: San Diego Leader Rory Smith
Professional Career before becoming an iGnite Class Leader
I had my first child (my daughter Ellie), 10 years ago this past August and took what I expected to be a 4 month maternity leave. After taking 2 of the four months of maternity leave, I realized I wanted to take time away from my professional career to spend time at home with my newborn. I knew they were moments I'd never get back. Prior to that, I was a Business Development Manager for a law firm, headquartered in New York, based out of the Los Angeles office. Now as a busy mom of three kids: Ellie (10), Patrick (8) and Billy (6), I'm so grateful for the blessing and opportunity I have to stay home and spend time with them. My family is my top priority.
Top Three Favorite Forms of Exercises & Why
I love HIIT workouts, I love Barre workouts and I love Power Sculpt/heated workouts. All different and unique in their own way, I enjoy pushing my body to a point where mentally I'm not sure I can fight through another rep. Ultimately, I leave those workouts feeling the most rewarded - both mentally and physically.
What do you love most about being an iGnite Leader?
The hour long classes I teach are some of the best hours of my week. I love seeing our members working hard, pushing themselves outside their comfort zone and giving it their all! Seeing the transformation some of our members have gone through from day 1 has been truly inspiring.
As it relates to your classes, what would you say is your “special sauce?"
I love making people laugh, feel heard/important, and - according to my husband - can talk the ear off an elephant. When I first told my sister I was going to lead fitness classes, she was so supportive because she thought I'd do great and give it my all, but also got a good laugh and said that she wished she could be a fly on the wall when I taught a class. She knew that my notorious way of turning every story into a mini novel and crazy way of always "summing it up" would inevitably end up becoming part of my teaching style. I inherited all of this from my dad, by the way.
What have you learned from your iGnite experience?
I have learned how important it is for us as women to be part of a supportive community. Prior to teaching with IGnite, I taught for a period of time at a gym where I literally walked in, taught a class, and left. Once I found iGnite, I was so impressed by the quality of the not only the membership but also the quality and variety of the classes offered. I realized that after teaching classes, I didn't want to just leave and get on with the rest of my day. I loved the feeling of belonging I felt upon finding this iGnite community.
Who Inspires you the most and why?
My mom inspires me on a daily basis. She's not only one of my best friends, but is one of the most hard working and incredibly generous people I've ever met. She was also my role model for fitness as a young girl, which instilled in me this sense of wanting to work out for both the physical and mental health benefits. As a 5th/6th grader, I remember jogging around our neighborhood in CT or racing around the high school track (did I mention she's a tad bit competitive) at a time when women's fitness wasn't always a top priority. Now in her mid 60s, she is one of the healthiest and strongest (mentally and physically) women I know!
If I were an ice cream flavor I would be...
I'd be mint chocolate chip....I'm literally obsessed..ate it every day of my three pregnancies. Still paying for that, btw.
What is your favorite color?
I love anything navy blue.
What are some of your passions?
I'm passionate about spending time with family and friends who are like family. I'm also passionate about working out and having fun, since we only get one chance at this life we've been given! I love being outdoors, spending time at the beach and though I never thought I'd live in CA, here I am...over 16 years later.
What are you most looking forward to?
I'm turning 40 in December and have heard my 40s are supposed to be some of the best years of my life. I'm excited and ready to crush #40!
What do you typically eat throughout the day? Breakfast, lunch, dinner, snacks, etc.
I tend to have a quick breakfast, a cup of tea and some fresh fruit with scrambled eggs and avocado. Lunch is generally brown rice cakes, hummus and some carrots and fruit on the side. Dinner with three kids varies but my favorites are shredded chicken tacos, tri tip and salad or our weekly Friday night sushi dinner.
What does a typical week of “working out” look like for you?
I iGnite 2-3 times a week, and also enjoy taking barre classes 2 times a week. Weekends are filled with flag football and soccer, so my workouts generally include good walks/hikes in the neighborhood with our 1-yo yellow lab Charley.