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Building Confidence, the Real Life Muscle...

The difference I see in my 13-year-old daughter, from before she started at Little City Weightlifting is like night and day. Before weightlifting, she was quiet, shy, unmotivated, withdrawn and anxious. She wasn’t excited about starting school. She always had a bad attitude about everything. There was always drama among her “friends” that caused her angst. The kids her age were also showing the same qualities, and there wasn’t any way I could get her to snap out of it. Covid-19 didn’t help my teen either. Add social isolation on top of all those feelings, and I had zero ideas, as a parent, of where to turn to get help with this. I reached out to a counselor, but they were so backlogged during this time and pushed us back several months of when she could be seen by a professional.


I am a member of Little City Fitness. Because of that membership, I am around a positive atmosphere almost every day of the week. Not knowing what to do, I forced my child, (yes, forced) to come with me to the gym – even if she didn’t want to do anything, she was going to sit there and hopefully, absorb all that positive energy. Throw Dani Sidell in front of her, and BOOM. Switch flipped. Coach Dani told me that physical exercise, reduces stress and can increase relaxation. It basically wears you out enough to where you go to bed tired and get a decent night’s sleep. I have also heard her say several times that exercise releases endorphins.

And those natural chemicals in your body are “feel good” hormones, therefore improving mood by decreasing depression and anxiety. All 100% on point. And I have seen, firsthand, all of this as truth, carried out through my daughter. Heck, I am a walking example too and didn’t even realize it. I have felt better than I ever have for the year or more that I have been going to Little City, both physically and mentally, but never really learned the science behind why. I convinced my daughter to try weightlifting. Spencer Cole coached her in one class and that was all it took for her to come back for more. When she is in the gym lifting, she has no choice but to pay attention to the weights and the people around her (focus), setting her body up correctly, from head to toe, making sure she has good form (attention to detail), correcting things, with each lift (goals), and going for it (drive)....I can see the concentration in her face (when I don’t make her nervous by watching). PR or fail, all of this requires determination. And maybe that is all subconsciously happening, and I read too much into it. Maybe it’s the other members, maybe it’s the coaches, maybe it’s the positive atmosphere? Maybe its everything all wrapped up in one building located at 10 Williams Street in Norwalk? I just know that whatever it is, they have it and it works!


The biggest thing that I have noticed is that this has boosted her self-confidence by a million. Regardless of her weight or size, her perception of her self-worth makes me emotional. And just thinking about how, in just over a month, she has grown into this person that is far more positive than before. She has become more open. She is talkative. She is personable. She pays attention. She is funny. She is confident. She has energy. She is respectful, she is kind. She goes to bed at a decent hour at night, she makes healthier decisions when it comes to food. She has even raised her grades in school and is more excited about attending. She enjoys being apart of the family – both at home and her Gym Family at Little City. Because that is exactly what it is, a Little City Family. What Danielle and Phil have built, has been quite literally a lifesaver.

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