Alden Phelps is the owner and head trainer of Zappa Fitness. Alden grew up at Lake Norman, NC just outside of Charlotte. At the age of five, she was suddenly diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes. Life turned upside down overnight. Always having been an active kid, she kept up with her usual activities while now monitoring blood sugar, insulin levels, etc. The diagnosis did not slow her down from playing soccer, riding dirt bikes, practicing horseback and spending more time outdoors than in. It did teach her a great deal about nutrition, awareness, and accepting responsibility for your physical and mental health.
At age 13 Alden started running with her dad, who had been a recreational and competitive runner for years. First she ran just for fun, then moving up to local 5Ks and, eventually, training for a half marathon. She still enjoys running with both her dad and her crazy, sweet rescue mutt.
Martial Arts entered Alden's life at age 14. She began training more consistently and intensely than ever before. As time went on, training was met with instructing and competing at both local and national levels.
Her first love within weapons competition was the samurai sword- collecting quite a few along the way! Martial Arts is still incorporated into many of Alden's workouts for both physical conditioning and personal defense.
Her first year in college Alden took advantage of the gym on campus and entered the world of lifting. Her goal was to increase overall strength and functional fitness while feeling healthy inside and out. She immediately found a love of the gym and weightlifting. Reaping both mental and physical benefits became yet another motivator- the gym was one of the most important aspects of her mental health.
After graduating from college with a double major in Criminal Justice and Psychology, she began studying to become a NASM Certified Personal Trainer. Shortly after, she added to her credentials with a specialty in Movement and Mobility through Dr. Kelly Starrett's The Ready State.
Like many people just starting out, Alden filtered in and out of multiple gyms before finding her "home". This gym is where she still enjoys her own workouts, as well as training in-person clients.
Introducing the one and only mascot of ZF- Zappa! Zappa is Alden's number one boy, best friend, and diabetic alert service dog. They were matched as a working dog team in August of 2012. For the past eight years, Zappa has kept a close eye on Alden- alerting if her blood sugar goes too high or low, retrieving supplies and being an overall rock star.
Zappa has been there for it all. He attended every college class with "his girl" and posed so elegantly for graduation photos. He's flown across the country to sniff the vineyards of Sonoma Valley, explored Disney World and saved Alden's life more than once.
Zappa is ball OBSESSED and will jump at any chance to play fetch. Now nine years old, he still loves to run, play and take field trips to the park. This dude has "work hard, play hard" mastered...and he is the perfect mascot for all that Zappa Fitness encompasses!