Sofia Rodriguez, also known as "SoFITfia" in the fitness industry, is an up and coming fitness professional in the DMV area. She comes from a military background, having traveled and lived in different states as well as countries. Being bilingual and multi-cultured, Sofia has been able to inspire and motivate individuals from all facets of life through her passion for fitness and health. Sofia received her Masters in Clinical Exercise Physiology from the University of Virginia in 2012. Her undergraduate degrees were in Kinesiology and Psychology. Besides education, she has a vast amount of experience in the field working in the medical realm with cardiology/stress testing as a cardiac tech, as well as a certified personal trainer (through the NCCPT, or National Council for Certified Personal Trainers) and nutrition specialist on the fitness side for almost a decade. Her clientele have included a variety, ranging anywhere from having clinical issues such as heart disease, cancer, diabetes to general weight loss and health to athletes, the elderly and even children. Besides training, Sofia is passionate about fitness writing, touching on subjects related to exercise, nutrition, health and fitness hot in the press. Although young, Sofia is known to always aim for the impossible, despite any doubt or adversity. Outside of fitness, Sofia loves puppies and watching crime shows as well as spending time with family, friends and her boyfriend.
What makes your training style unique?:
My philosophy is to use non-traditional bodybuilding mixed with functional training as well as HIIT (high intensity interval training), calisthenics and plyometrics within a client’s program (all of that being relative). Working with a lot of sedentary individuals who have typical desk jobs, I truly believe there should be a focus on the posterior chain (glutes, back) as well as the core, muscle groups that are usually weak/overstretched and therefore can lead to imbalances in the body as well as chronic pains. Full body movements are a must (ex: squat w/ an overhead press), as busy schedules require the most time-efficient workout possible. In addition, I am extremely well-rounded: having the ability to work with the clinical population due to my experience with internships in cardiac & pulmonary rehabilitation, cancer clinics, diabetes and heart failure programs, as well as a children obesity clinic, something a lot of trainers do lack. My emphasis on developing a unique relationship with each client may be appealing. I always tell others: what makes a good trainer isn’t necessarily how many exercises you know, but how you can adapt and mold to each individual person you train. You have to be flexible. Not every client should be interacted with or treated the same. You as the trainer should fit the role the client needs you to be. I know being personable and welcoming as well as encouraging and supportive has helped not only attract new clientele but retention of clients for years.
If you could change one behavior you see in your clients, what would it be?:
Believing in themselves. Honestly, that’s my main goal and concern when I do start working with any client. I strive to help my clients gain not only strength in the physical sense, but mental strength as well. Once they start developing a sense of confidence, the rest of initial goals always follow suit (weight loss, muscle gain, health, etc). As a professional, when we (my client and I) accomplish gaining control of that inner power and developing self love, I know I am doing my job.
What is your favorite exercise? Why?:
ANYTHING that works the Glute and Shoulder muscle groups☺ Deadlifts, Squats, Hip Thrusts, Kickbacks, Glute Isolation Exercises as well as any variation of Overhead Press, Lateral & Frontal Raises, and Reverse Flies. I think good shoulders and round glutes make us women have those desirable curves, almost an hourglass shape or an illusion thereof. Giving you an amazing physique without the need of going “under the knife.”
Briefly describe your weekly workout schedule. Is it seasonal? How many rest days do you take each week?:
When I used to compete in bodybuilding, my workout schedule was more of a rigid structure with no wiggle room. Depending on what point in the season I was in, either in preparation for a competition or in the “off-season,” cardio and lifting were different. There was always a split-body routine approach, with a focus on the weaker body parts. Now that I no longer compete, I am more free and lenient with my program. Honestly though it all depends on what my goals are. I just try to have more fun and make exercises up, kind of use the gym and my environment as my playground. As of right now, I lift 4-5 days per week with 1-2 off days. Sometimes I will throw in sprints once or twice a week, cardio with high intensity intervals, and plyometrics. During lifts, I superset A LOT, take little to no rest, and perform functional training and calisthenics in between sets. This is a very smart way to not only build muscle more effectively, but also keep the heart rate up and burn more calories. In general, I listen to my body on how many rest days I will take. I have learned to be very flexible and accept that every week I may not work out at the same time on a specific day. Some weeks I may not have a perfect program due to a busy schedule. At the end of the day, you will get the results if you are CONSISTENT over time and cover the basics as well as have a well balanced nutrition intake.
What is your favorite outdoor Washington D.C. activity? Do you have a favorite hike or run?:
Great Falls has an amazing view for a hike. Any landscape in the DC area is a great place to walk or run by. I will admit I am not much of a runner anymore but I love to explore different areas in the DMV.
How do you recover from a tough workout?:
I TRY to rest and get more sleep, drink a LOT of water, maintain healthy nutrition, drink BCAA’s (branch chain amino acids) and take glutamine. Glutamine is an amino acid your body produces naturally, however some studies show supplementing with it may help with different processes in the body, one being muscle recovery.
What is your favorite place in DC to get a healthy meal?:
DC has a LOT of places to eat! I still have not had the opportunity to try all of the well-known favorites, however am grateful there are so many healthy choices! Two that come to mind are True Foods and Sweet Green.
Do you have anything on the horizon you would like to share?:
It’s funny, although I am very organized and type A, I feel as though I am all over the place when it comes to this topic. This is of course in a good way! There are SO many things I get excited about carrying out just thinking of the endless possibilities. Most recently I have partnered up with "Mighty Meals VA," a local meal prep service. This will for sure make my life easier by taking time off my hands to have already prepared healthy foods available, and I am really happy about that! I also am sponsored by Muscle Egg, a company that specializes in producing different flavored egg whites. I work with Fitness Genes, a company that utilizes DNA and science to give a unique prescription for exercise and nutrition as well as other health components, as a Fitness/Motivation Coach. Otherwise, I am currently slowly working on my website and planning to work on a bunch of other side projects in addition to training clients and fitness writing. That is the best way I like to operate, many eggs in all baskets. All in all, I do know I plan to help more and more people through fitness, health and wellness. My passion is to inspire and motivate others to become better versions of themselves, and become stronger both inside and out. This inner confidence translates to being able to accomplish anything for these individuals, and success is therefore inevitable across all aspects of their lives. Ultimately I want to work with people not only across the country, but the globe as well. Becoming an international fitness icon is definitely one of the goals. Starting with the DC Metropolitan area is a good beginning in my opinion☺