Throughout the month of March, the entire Peloton community is excited to come together to celebrate the power of women, the ways in which they empower each other, and how they continue to make their own history. Four Peloton Members, who have connected through their workouts and their lives as busy women, moms and physicians, talk about what celebrating this month means to them and what they love most about Peloton women coming together to support and celebrate each other, side by side.
What does Women’s History Month mean to you?
Lauren B., Member since 2016: Women’s History Month is a time to recognize and celebrate how incredible women really are. We are often told the opposite, especially for those of us working in male-dominated fields. But the reality is that women are amazingly strong. It’s not just about what we overcome, or have overcome, it’s about celebrating womanhood for what it is–right here, right now. We need to continue to empower each other to keep our voices loud and proud. We are changing the world.
Stephanie F., Member since 2015: Celebrating Women’s History is important to me because it allows us a nation to reflect on the contributions women have made and the issues women currently face. As a Black woman physician, this month also allows me to reflect on the contribution of women physicians and Black women physicians have made to the practice of medicine.
Madeline H., Member since 2016: Taking time to really acknowledge and celebrate amazing contributions women have made in the past and present, not only in our society but around the world. For me personally, I particularly admire the women who so bravely paved the way for women in medicine!
How have the women of the Peloton community empowered you on your fitness journey?
Virginia I., Member since 2016: Prior to having my Peloton, I had never had a Facebook account. Now, 99% of my friends on Facebook are people who I have never met but have become some of the most important people in my life. Forming the Peloton Female Physicians group with my other 3 moderators has been an amazing accomplishment for the four of us. My co-moderators have become my closest friends. The group spans from residents in their 20s to retired physicians in their 70s, each offering support, encouragement and our own high fives. We’re helping the younger members to see the journey more clearly, that the finish line never is achieved, that the path is long but Peloton is an avenue of support, as is the community helping everyone achieve greatness. Rarely if ever is the discussion about medicine, we have enough of that at work; it is about recognizing our successes big or small and the achievement of fulfillment outside of who we are day to day.
Madeline H.: Peloton allows you to be yourself, while still presenting a challenge. Everyone has their own power, their own goals and needs, and Peloton supports all of that.
What does it mean for you to see female instructors represented in Peloton classes, pushing you towards your best?
Stephanie F.: I always say, “representation matters”. Having women Peloton instructors is extremely important to me because it gives me someone I can identify with. Women “get” other women and understand the issues other women face. It is important that the instructors represent me, and the Peloton women instructors do just that.
Lauren B.: They are true to themselves, powerful, amazing women. They are so secure in who they are that they are able to empower the rest of us. They do it in this amazing way that doesn’t make you want to be them but makes you want to be the best version of you. That is truly special. Robin is my favorite example of this fierceness. She is such an amazing person herself and yet makes me feel like a queen and superwoman!
Liz L., Member since 2017: The diversity of the women of Peloton, age, size, sexual orientation, and race shows me that all women can not only succeed in fitness but be influencers and motivators. The inspiration they give us through their messages both spoken and implied make me work harder and want me to give it my all.
Who are important women in your life that have empowered you?
Virginia I.: My residency director who is now Dean of Graduate Medical Education for Rowan medical school has always been one of my strongest mentors and now my best friend. My three co-moderators empower me every day. We share a common bond of a bike and being female physicians, we laugh daily, have cried with each other and have encouraged each other. We believe in each other.
Lauren B.: My mom has an understated, modest intelligence. She has a great way of being supportive but staying true to herself. She will tell you the truth. My grandmother was an outstanding woman, far ahead of her time in her support of early childhood education and racial equality. She had that same don’t-take-no-for-an-answer attitude that translated into gaining support for what she felt was right. Finally, my mother-in-law is one of the kindest people I have ever met. She has been through so much and yet only thinks about other people. I would like to be more like that!
Liz B.: This may sound clichéd but my mom is a force of nature. She has been a teacher, a Wall Street executive and a small business owner. She adapts with the time and is always learning. She taught me that anything is possible and that no one can tell you who you can be.
What’s one example of how the women in the Peloton community come together to empower each other?
Virginia I.: In our specific group, it is helping all to recognize life is a journey. When young female physicians are feeling overwhelmed with “getting it all done,” not having time to ride because they have young children and the demands of work are great, we are there to offer support. Having older children now, I have pointed out I would give anything to hold one of my children again and read them a book even if it meant skipping a ride. I often point out that life goes fast and that is the beauty of Peloton, the Bike or Tread is there for them all the time whether it is a 20 min workout or a 60 min workout. Now with the expanded library of meditation, yoga and Tread classes, Peloton is not only a bike, it is the forever workout.
Stephanie F.: One specific example of how women in the Peloton community come together to empower each other is my Peloton Facebook group: Peloton Mocha Spin Docs. I started this group for other Black women physicians who own Pelotons. There are about 300 women in this group and we empower each other by offering support and encouragement. Because the women in my group are all physicians and most of them are mothers, we understand the challenges of incorporating a healthy lifestyle with the challenges of being a physician.
Lauren B: We all work hard in everything we do and time is a commodity. But we also all know that prioritizing yourself is so important and we do a better job caring for others when we care for ourselves. We are at all different fitness levels, with different goals, but we celebrate each other. Sometimes that is celebrating someone’s 1000th ride and sometimes it’s someone who made it back on the bike for the first time in months. Some of us have small children, some with older ones. We represent every field in medicine and a full range of personalities. But we all recognize that having each other makes us stronger.
Madeline H.: I think our Peloton Female Physicians group is an amazing example of women uniting together to empower each other. It is a connection of female colleagues who all share a common goal of trying to find time in a sometimes chaotic, frequently stressful day to take time to exercise. The positivity, love, support and encouragement are unwavering.