Suzanne Gibbs - Featured Member August 2015



Suzanne's Story

Ten years ago I was diagnosed with osteoarthritis in both knees.  I was told by my doctor to walk less (never run), and go to water fitness classes. I battled depression throughout this time because suffering from ongoing daily pain is debilitating. It still is, but I continue to learn how to manage the pain and the flare ups.

I enjoy RoughFit because I love being outside every day — a true passion of mine. I loved the varied ages of RoughFit participants and I will never forget my first day when I showed up! Tustin was new to me and the RF fitness regime was new to me, however; Everyone was really friendly and accepting so I thought to myself, "ok I can do this!"

The weight loss challenge in 2014 changed everything for me. I was 188 pounds when I joined in and 5'8" — way too heavy! Since October of 2014 I have maintained a weight of about 153 and in October of 2014 I ran my first mile!

In September of 2014 I decided to celebrate my new body and turning 50 by scheduling a trip to Peru and to visit Machu Picchu via the Inca Trail. The Inca Trail is a strenuous hike lasting four full days in altitudes from 4,000 feet to over 14,000 feet traversing seven different climate zones from jungle heat to cloud cover and above the tree line in the Andes Mountain Range.

With the help of RoughFit I was prepared. After months of doctors visits for vaccinations and to get prescribed medication for the altitude — I was as ready to take on the challenge and loved every step! I loved that my body was strong enough to carry my pack (the porters carried my pad and sleeping bag as well as our group food). I loved the trail because on the Inca Trail I found my inner strong and wild woman!

I am a strong and wild woman. At age 50 I hiked in the Andes Mountain Range on the Inca Trail and I had fun!

I am grateful for RF and the Functional Fitness aspect of our training. I will never underestimate the power of squats, lunges, step ups, planks, pushups, and sit ups ever again! 

I hope I never again catch myself saying, "I will never be able to do that..." Because if I had listened to that depressed voice inside of me from 10 years ago I never would have joined RF, I never would have chosen to keep looking for a stronger and healthier me, and I never would have been able to fully enjoy the Inca Trail and Machu Picchu the way that I did in June of 2015.

Every day is new. Every day is outside. Jenni and Greg are terrific, as are all of the RF instructors. I enjoy listening to all the amazing races and adventures that other RF participants complete. RF allowed me to believe that I could reach beyond my preconceived or rather ill-conceived beliefs. RF challenged me to be a better stronger me — oh and wild too!

Thank you so much for inspiring us all Suzanne and showing us the power of our attitude and positive thinking! Congratulations on being named RoughFit's Featured Member!

We look forward to all your future adventures!

Michael Faraj - Featured Member July 2015


When Michael joined RoughFit, he had little exercise experience and could not even run the mile around the park without walking. But he wanted to get healthy and improve his endurance.

Since that first day, Michael has lost over 30 pounds, gained balance, strength and neuromuscular coordination, and has shattered his expectations in his running performance.

In addition, he has continued to challenge the limits of his comfort zone, entering trail races, hiking with RoughFit to the summit of Mt. Baldy, and taking on new adventures throughout the year.

Michael is an inspiration to all those around him; he brings such a positive attitude everyday; and he has embraced our mantra that health and fitness is a lifestyle.

From Michael:
The life long struggle to eat healthy and stay physically fit had been a continuous challenge for me. April 1st 2014 I decided to make a commitment to my family and myself, to introduce more physical activity by joining RoughFit on a friend’s recommendation.  Over the course of the year, I was able to lower my blood pressure and drop 30 pounds. When I signed up, my goal was to run my first 10k at the Dino Dash and I did. After my first 10k, I continued to run and now truly have a passion for it. Since my first race I have set a new PR for my 10k, placed 2nd in my age division in a 5k trail run and joined the Tuesday night RoughFit Run Club. RoughFit creates a culture of its own, with trained professionals leading the classes and showing us injury free methods to workout. The synergy of the people and staff make up a truly supportive and positive community that we know as RoughFit. I am grateful to wake up in the morning and leave the house to have fun with RoughFit each day.  

Congratulations Michael on being named the July 2015 Featured Member! We are so proud to have you in RoughFit! 

Michael's kids celebrate with him after the Peter's Canyon Trail Race.

Michael's kids celebrate with him after the Peter's Canyon Trail Race.

Michelle Adrian - RoughFit Ambassador 2015

Each year, we present one RoughFitter with the annual Ambassador Award. This goes to someone who exemplifies the RoughFit spirit by being positive, caring, adventurous, determined, and consistent. Michelle Adrian is a wonderful example, and she has truly inspired everyone at RoughFit through her accomplishments this year.

In May of 2014, Michelle had brain surgery on her balance nerve and had an extremely difficult recovery. Despite her challenges, she remained motivated to pursue health and fitness, and as soon as possible, she came back to RoughFit on a regular basis. Through many challenges, she has been consistently striving to achieve a full recovery and reach new milestones. Her incredible determination and consistency has been a wonderful example and inspiration for all of us, and we are proud to have her in RoughFit. Congratulations to Michelle Adrian, our 2015 RoughFit Ambassador.

Nina Robinson - Featured Member October 2014

For the month of October, we are proud to have Nina Robinson as our featured member. Nina rejoined RoughFit this past year to get healthy and reunite with the team. Her incredible growth, weight loss, and success has been an awesome inspiration for us all, and we want to share it with you guys!


The past few years have included some big life changes for Nina. After starting a new job in a different industry and having new school and sport commitments with her son, she found herself approaching a “reality check“. Her doctor diagnosed her with high blood pressure and the treatment required medication. Immediately, Nina was deeply motivated and inspired to make some big changes.


Nina had been to Rough-Fit before, but now that she had specific goals of losing weight and getting off the high blood pressure medication, she jumped straight into a daily workout schedule. Within 90 days, she was off the high blood pressure medicationand had lost 15 pounds. This took place early in 2014, and now, her weight loss has exceeded 40 pounds!

She credits much of her success to the community within RoughFit. As someone with a lot of experience in team sports, Nina feels particularly appreciative of the support, encouragement, and challenges she has received from other RoughFitters. RoughFit’s unique team dynamic has helped her, as well as others, achieve personal goals in fitness related activities through community based training. She actually received first place in the Master’s division of the 2014 RoughFit Triathlon, and that was her very first triathlon!

Yet, Nina clearly states that her largest accomplishment is an overall commitment to healthy living. Not only does she feel more focused, alert, and energized everyday, but she is able to run, bike, and swim like never before. Her devotion to health and fitness has made huge changes in her life and helped her to overcome major challenges. The mindset, positive attitude, weight loss, and health gains she has achieved are a true inspiration for all of us. Nina has found success in her health, become part of a team, and inspired others to do the same. Congratulations Nina on your incredible accomplishments and commitment to healthy living!

Paul Pitchess - Featured Member July 2014

We are very proud to have Paul as our July 2014 Featured Member. He has had great success in improving his health, fitness, and nutrition to ultimately lose 25 pounds in 2014 alone! His consistency, commitment to health and fitness, and great attitude clearly exemplify the Rough-Fit spirit and are a great example for all of us.

Paul originally joined Rough-Fit to get back on track with consistent exercise. With regular attendance, his fitness began to significantly improve, yet, he wasn’t losing any weight. This only began once he started to address his diet.

After seeking out some nutritional help and doing the RoughFit 28 Day Challenge, Paul was able to cut out processed sugars and eat correctly for his blood type. Simple changes such as taking his coffee black instead of adding artificial sweetener has helped Paul lose a total of 25 pounds this year. He now makes a conscious effort to eat healthy foods that will nourish and fuel his exercise and busy day.

Not only has Paul improved his consistency with exercise and eating healthy, but he has also begun to venture out and try new things in his fitness. The RoughFit Duathlon sparked a newfound passion for cycling, something Paul now frequently enjoys. He has also done several other races including 5ks and 10ks and accomplished new personal bests.


Next, Paul is looking forward to racing the RoughFit Triathlon. His growth in fitness and nutrition shows that even a busy entrepreneur with a family can pursue health, enjoy exercise, and find a love for a new sport. Paul’s success is a great example for everyone and a wonderful inspiration for us to pursue health and fitness and accomplish something great. Whether that’s a new PR, weight loss, or just a healthier diet, it can all be done with a little hard work. Congratulations Paul, and thanks for being our July 2014 Featured Member.