This past January, Gia Heflin was announced as the 2017 RAC Scholarship recipient. After nearly a year of using RAC to the fullest, she has not only moved forward on her fitness journey but accomplished multiple goals and shows no sign of stopping.

After serving in the United States Army for 5 years, Gia found herself struggling to pass required PT tests. Using the personal training sessions from the RAC Scholarship, Gia began training with PT Niki Veldman. Niki pushed Gia to complete her PT test with eases while introducing her to workout s she can use beyond the scholarship.

“When Niki and I were running, it got to a point where we weren’t even focused on me passing my PT test because it was like she already knew I was going to pass,” Gia said. “We were working on doing distance running, but we were working more on building my leg strength because I think she knew I could do it.”

Completing her PT tests was Gia’s initial goal, but it soon developed into much more than that. She was able to face old foes with new tools.

“I was like, I’m gonna run a half marathon,” she exclaimed. “I’m going to defeat something that’s always defeated me. It’s always been my weaker point,” she said of running.

Gia completed a half marathon on September 17, 2017.

Not only did the RAC Scholarship provide Gia with a chance to strengthen her workout routine by training with Niki; it allowed her to explore more possibilities in the kitchen. Certified Personal Trainer and Nutritionist Ashley Talebi worked side-by-side with Gia, helping her give her body what it needed to thrive.

“Ashley, oh man…” she said laughing. “I learned a lot of new recipes – good recipes and I learned that it’s okay if you fall off the wagon. I fell off the wagon plenty of times! Ashley would tell me new ways of how to not let it happen again.”

These workouts, nutrition advice, and recipes Gia learned during her 2017 fitness journey won’t be going away anytime soon. These are tools she is going to carry with her in the future. To those unsure about applying for the 2018 RAC Scholarship, Gia has offered some encouragement:

“Do it,” she said. You’ll feel accomplished; you’ll feel good about yourself. Isn’t that everything that you wanted to be; empowering yourself? You’re going to feel super empowered through this experience.”

The RAC Scholarship enhances the recipient’s club experience, and provides guidance toward a healthier lifestyle and fitness tools to achieve success. To enter for 2018, submit your testimony (video or written) to Club Coach Amanda Shannon at AmandaS@RaintreeAthleticClub.com no later than December 8th, 2017. Please include details of your goals and why we should select you!

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