our founder

sarah barrett lepore

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Sarah developed Chakra Strength out of her longtime fascination with the body and mind connection.

AS A CHILD Sarah watched her Mom and older sister practice all kinds of exercise approaches and weight loss diets. She learned about Elaine Powers, Jazzercise, The Oat Bran Muffin Diet to lower cholesterol, the Grapefruit Diet, the Cabbage Soup Diet, The Low Carb/No Fat Movement, the South Beach Diet, and the list goes on. Jane Fonda and Denise Austin may as well have been at the dinner table every night. She, at 7 or 8 years of age, would attend weekly Weight Watchers meetings with her mom. She’d watch the “weigh-in” process, as well as the starvation cycle the day before weigh-ins. Sarah’s Mom did the Optifast Diet before Oprah did…she was in 8th grade and watched her mom consume nothing but powder poured into Diet Coke 5 times a day. On that diet her mom dwindled down to a size 8 in jeans (today’s standards a size 6) and complained of light-headedness, weakness, and not feeling “herself” as she gradually put all the weight back on over time. No kidding, as a game Sarah used to try to gain weight just so she could lose it (after college that wish came true). Basically, Sarah grew up knowing on a deep level that food intake and energy output makes a difference in how we appear. She understood the external attractiveness that women desired from having a thin body, and witnessed the self-loathing women practiced when working to attain that external appearance. 

AS A TEENAGER Sarah noticed how her mind felt lighter and happier after herself doing those video workouts. The internal connection made sense, and exercising became more than a tool to accomplish an external goal. The way the body could change the mind’s perspective in an instant was fascinating to her, and the fields of Health and Psychology quickly become her two passions. Influenced by “Ageless Body, Timeless Mind” and “Quantum Healing” by Deepak Chopra, she headed to college for a BA in Psychology and a BA in Health-Physical Education from Wittenberg University. She noticed that professionally, something needed to connect the two, and twenty years later, Chakra Strength is the culmination of her personal experiences, observations and studies.

IN HER 20s she was accepted to Naropa University, moved to Boulder, and earned an MA in Transpersonal Counseling Psychology. School required a committed vipassana mediation practice, something of which she found paramount to real transformation. Naropa opened her world to many theorists and styles of counseling, and she became further influenced by Gestalt Therapy, Jungian Psychology, works of Thich Nhat Hanh, Pema Chodron, Wilhelm Reich, Steven Levine, Christine Coldwell, The Feldenkrais Method, Hakomi, Ida Rolf, Christiane Northrup, the list goes on….

Outside of school she enrolled in a separate training by Susan Aposhyan, creator of Bodymind Psychotherapy which enhanced her knowledge base of the physiological body by “listening and allowing” blocked energy to sequence out of the hands and feet. As transformative as that work was, the fitness aspect, which she all the time held interest and self-studied, was missing as a tool to offer clients. Therefore in 2001 she become an ACE Certified Personal Trainer and had the honor of working for Master Trainer Gregg Hoffman, now of Urban Pump in Denver, who specialized in Core, Functional and Stability Personal Training years before it became widespread.

Sarah is a weekly guest on a Ventura radio show called “Girls On the Air.” Subscribe to “Girls on the Air” on iTunes in and hear Sarah talk about bodymind health and wellness! Or, listen to the podcast archives

IN HER 30s she worked as a Personal Trainer and was a Licensed Professional Counselor in CO, when she entered an entirely different field using her graduate school background. Her background included internships in hospice care and contemplative presence, specifically the Windhorse Approach called Basic Attendance. Clientele for this work was with the mentally ill and elderly. Her thesis on BodyMind Transition in Life and Death helped her explore theories of grief, loss, life transition and trauma, which brought her to working in the OPO World as they call it, Organ and Tissue Donation and Procurement, helping people get life-saving transplants. She supported families of organ donors, and later worked with Hospital Administration for policy development and teaching. The work was powerful, meaningful, and took her to the edge many times, across the spectrum of trauma, grief and other concerns of life and death.

STILL she missed the other part of her career, working with people on a physical level. That bridge only existed in her own daily embodied strength training practice, but she knew she wanted to share it with others someday.

JUST BEFORE TURNING 40, something she never expected with her life happened, and she became a Mother. She left the OPO World, moved from Santa Barbara to Ventura, CA and became a “WAHM” (Work At Home Mom), essentially starting all over with a new identity and career. Her daughter is now 7 and Sarah is carving out time to build this vocational dream, at last combining BOTH strength training and emotional growth. Life has even brought an opportunity for her to provide the Health-Wellness segment on a weekly radio show in Ventura called “Girls on the Air” on KVTA 1590AM which can now be heard on iTunes!

THE TIME HAS COME to manifest and synthesize her two passions in a professional setting, to teach, support, and bring people to a higher vibe. Join her and allow her knowledge to spark the wisdom and peace in YOUR body and mind. There’s no better time than THE PRESENT.