Aly Teich (@sweatlife_nyc) is one of the toughest, most inspiring women I have ever had the pleasure to meet. She is also one of the most connected and knowledgeable people in the fitness industry.
Aly is the founder of The Sweat Life, a popular fitness blog and online video series, which I’ve been a fan of for years.
Since leaving the corporate world behind to pursue her now ubiquitous fitness startup, Aly has grown her brand to over 70.000 Instagram followers and collaborated with some of the largest brands in the world, including Adidas, Clif Bar, and many more.
In this wide-ranging interview, Aly recounts, in detail, what it was like to detach from corporate America and start her own business. We discuss all the emotions, expectations, highs, and lows that came with that decision, as well as how she overcame specific challenges along the way.
At the heart of Aly’s success—aside from an immortal work ethic and a genuine compulsion to make people healthier in their daily lives—is her skill as a networker.
In this conversation, Aly explains the tactics she employs when reaching out to a brand for the first time, as well as the strategies she relies on to convert an idea into a conversation and, ultimately, a business deal.
In that vein, she provides some great insight into the inner workings of The Sweat Life—particularly how she designed the architecture of the site to support a booming partnership business from day one.
We also talk about Aly’s three pillars for personal wellness, which support her energy, creativity, and mental health, as well as the behaviors she avoids—including incessant social media interactions—in order to remain healthy, happy, and focused.
This episode is truly one for everyone, and, as always, I encourage you to listen all the way through. It’s a powerful one.
I hope you will find this conversation as informative and inspiring as I did. And if you do, please subscribe on Apple Podcasts, Google Play, Stitcher, and RSS (ratings and reviews are appreciated, too!).
This episode is brought to you by Altra.
Altra makes shoes that allow you to run the way you were born to.
Altra’s founders noticed something—that the design of most running shoes was hurting runners more than helping them: In traditional running shoes, elevated heels promote a high-impact landing; and narrow, pointy toe boxes squeeze the toes out of their natural position—increasing risk of bunions, hammertoes, and plantar fasciitis.
So, a couple of years ago, Altra founder Golden Harper began melting off outsoles and removing the excess heel elevation from his traditional running shoes. It was ugly, but it worked! The term ” Zero Drop” was coined to describe the level cushioning and perfect weight balance from heel to forefoot.
Today, every Altra running shoe features a fully cushioned Zero Drop platform that places the heel and forefoot at the same distance from the ground. This natural balance aligns the feet, back, and body posture for less impact. It also strengthens the Achilles and lower calf muscles that have been weakened over a lifetime of running on elevated heels.
In addition to Zero Drop, Altra’s Footshape toe box allows the toes to relax and spread out naturally, while allowing the big toe to remain in a straight position. This enhances stability and creates a powerful toe-off to maximize running performance.
I was introduced to Altra a couple of years ago, and their running shoes have since become a sort of secret weapon for me. I break them out for especially punishing runs, and when it’s time to go off-road, their trail shoes are the only ones i’ll wear. The Lone Peak is my personal favorite.
This spring, Altra wants you to #EmbraceTheSpace and get fired up for taking your runs outside with their lineup of fast and light road shoes. One model to check out, for sure, is the Altra Duo, which features 31mm cushioning beneath both the forefoot and the heel, and weighs in at a crazy-light 7.5 ounces.
If you’re interested in checking out the Altra Duo, you can head to fleetfeetsports.com. They’ll be available there through March.
Altra is also committed to helping runners avoid injury by teaching efficient, low-impact running technique. Golden, (who, by the way, ran a world-record 2:45 marathon when he was 12 years old), taught me everything I know about running with proper form. By focusing on four core pillars, we totally overhauled my running form and noticeably improved my performance and efficiency.
In case you’re curious, since you’re here because of a podcast dedicated to self improvement, those four pillars were:
- Establishing a forward-momentum posture
- Utilizing a proper arm swing
- Cultivating low-impact landings
- And maintaining a high cadence
You can find more information on those, which I encourage you to check out if you’re a runner, along with all kinds of advice and tips for proper running form, as well as, of course, information on all of Altra’s products, at altrarunning.com.