Matt Lane
Veteran's Program

I was born in Idaho, but raised in Utah. I’ve lived in many different places, but always have considered Utah home. Ever since I was little, I wanted to join the military. In the summer of 2001, I graduated high school and left a month later for the Army at the age of 17. In 2003, I deployed with the 101st Airborne as infantryman for the spearhead into Iraq. I spent one year in Iraq. War is a very personal thing and it changes everyone who goes. I was in denial regarding my experiences in the war, but then in 2007 I finally went to get help.

In the military, fitness is a huge part of the life style. I always prided myself with being in shape. I competed in lots of fitness events and won awards. After I got out of the military, I got out of shape. Being out of shape made my injuries worse and I became more depressed.

I decided something had to change. I first came to Fit2Recover to support my cousin. I instantly felt at home at FTR and started to get more serious about getting back into shape.

I use exercise as a tool to help me deal with my problems. I believe in the healing properties of exercise and wanted to give back, so I volunteered to help teach classes at FTR. I also helped start a Veterans Group to pass on coping skills to help others deal with the wounds of war.

My name is Marci Warner. I am 28 years old and live in West Jordan, Utah. I am passionate about life and want to share that passion with others. My love for the outdoors and exercise makes me feel alive. I love anything and everything that our beautiful mountains offer us here.

Sadly, I missed out on these activities for many years due to drug addiction. From ages 16 to 22, I dedicated my life to heroin. During those years, I sacrificed everything that I loved and was important to me, until I had nothing left. Then, in 2009, I went to a treatment facility for help. It took a few years, but on February 23rd 2012, I was finally able to let go of drugs and alcohol completely. Today I attend school full-time and plan to apply for nursing school in the near future. Until I got clean, I never thought that this part of my life’s journey would be possible.

Getting sober was a great blessing. A big part of my recovery is based around fitness, and I share this commitment to health with the FTR Community. I try to stay physically active simply because it makes me feel better. Pushing myself to the limit to climb the side of a mountain or snowboard freely through the trees from high peaks gives me a great sense of purpose and accomplishment. I want others to feel these freeing feelings. I want to help people get excited about life and find what makes them happy.

Rachel Santizo

Volunteer Coordinator

My name is Rachel Santizo. I am in long-term recovery. I started cleaning up my beautiful mess on March 14, 2012. I have two amazing children, my son Devin, who is 15, and my daughter Jade, who is 12. I lost custody of these two wonderful kids for 2 1/2 years while battling addiction. After a long struggle, I was granted joint custody on October 2, 2013; by far the best sober day of my recovery journey :).

When I was a little a girl, I didn't dream of growing up and becoming an addict. Life happens and addiction became a big part of my journey. I became part of the FTR Community to start building physical strength, but I quickly started re-building inner strength and amazing relationships. I have a very supportive family, but FTR has become my sobriety family, hands down. Through good times and bad, the FTR Community is there for me. FTR truly understands the daily struggles of recovery.

Addiction has no boundaries and no limits; neither does FTR, but in a healthy sense. ALL are welcome at FTR. Everything I stand for and believe in today is reflected at FTR. My kids don’t walk behind me, they don’t walk in front of me. We walk together as a family at FTR, and FTR supports this.

I am no longer ashamed of my addiction and recovery journey, and I am grateful to use my story to help the FTR community in any way I can. I have one love today... life... MY LIFE. I am proud and happy to devote part of this life to serving as FTR’s Volunteer Coordinator.

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James Sjostrom

Lead Trainer

James' passion is physical fitness, and he conveys that passion to all those he trains. James will help you build strength and agility, with an emphasis on safe practice and strong encouragement that leads to rapid and sustained results.

Brian Knight

Sports Team Coordinator

I'm originally from Wisconsin. I've moved around my entire adult life constantly looking for happiness. Anytime anything bad would happen I would just move to a new city, never understanding that the issue was internal. I landed in Salt Lake City February 7th, 2015 which is also my sobriety date.

I first got involved with FTR right out of treatment. I embraced the community, support, and love I desperately needed in early sobriety. The more I showed up, the more people were there for me. I had found a home. Growing up in a dysfunctional family where love wasn't always prevalent, this newfound feeling was much appreciated. I bought into the philosophy of FTR and wasted no time getting involved.

Sports were a big part of my life growing up, especially soccer. However, my alcoholism greatly interfered with my passion for sports. Fit To Recover inspired me to begin a sober soccer team. Much like Fit To Recover itself, the sober soccer team started out small. It's growing everyday and is just a great activity for all ages and skill levels to come out and have fun!

Bruna Brito
circuit training

My name is Bruna Brito. I’m originally from Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. I am working on my Psychology bachelor’s degree, focused on Sports Psychology, and currently in my first semester of the SUDC Program. In Fall of 2016, I will be a Certified Substance Use Disorder Counselor. As soon as I earn my Bachelors degree, I will be state licensed, which will allow me to help not only FTR, but also other recovery centers.

I have trained in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, Muay Thai, CrossFit and Kettlebells. I started teaching in 2014, and motivating people is my passion. I love to see my people improve and get stronger. I believe every single human being is always recovering from something, and exercise definitely provides you commitment, focus, discipline, and self -love, these are the steps in the staircase to 100% healing. The FTR community is powerful, accepting, welcoming, loving; I am very blessed to have crossed paths with FTR. Fit To Recover is my family, not only a gym. My goal is to make you stronger, and to welcome you into this FTR Community.

Tessa Acker

Food to recover

My name is Tessa Acker and I am a Registered Dietitian, backed by a Masters degree in Public Health. I am also the proud sister of my brother Ian, who has made the FTR sober gym dream a reality, by helping those in recovery benefit from exercise and a supportive community.

Together with a wonderful group of Salt Lake City Registered Dietitians, we have started Food To Recover and are dedicated to helping the FTR community eat wisely and cook well. Please Join us at our table of good eating and good health!

Marci Warner
Project director