Wonder Woman Wednesday: This Mom Can Fly

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Ruth Zukerman

By Samantha Lande, BCB Editorial Director

Welcome to Wonder Woman Wednesday, a weekly feature that will attempt to tackle the question we are frequently asked— “how do moms really do it all?” Each week we will feature an amazing mom with extraordinary abilities. From founders of some of the most successful companies to philanthropists who are changing the world, these women are true heroines. To thank them for lifting the cape on some of their super powers, we will make a donation to the charity of their choice.

NAME: Ruth Zukerman

AGE:  57

KIDS: Kate and Rachel (Twins), 25-years-old

OCCUPATION: Co-Founder & Creative Director, Flywheel Sports

 LIVE: Upper West Side, Manhattan

FAVORITE CHARITYChildren’s Rights 

With so many boutique workouts it’s not an easy feat to stand out from the pack and remain an immensely popular workout year after year. Ruth Zukerman, creator of Flywheel Sports, found something that resonated with people through her high-intensity, super challenging and fun cycling workout. What started in New York is now a worldwide venture, with studios coast to coast and even in Dubai. In recent years, FlyBarre has been added to the Flywheel sports family. Ruth tells us how Joni Mitchell inspires her, what it’s like to raise twin daughters and why it’s important to never give up.

What is your backstory?  

I got to where I am today by never giving up.  I was certainly tested several times, but I was always able to learn a great deal through specific events.  I’m also convinced that everything happens for a reason.  Sometimes, I even want to thank those who tried to pull me down.  At the end of the day they did me the biggest favor!

Tell us about your typical weekday…

I start my day by teaching a Flywheel indoor cycling class at one of our seven Flywheel locations in Manhattan.  Post ride, I shower, change and head to our corporate office as there are always meetings to attend, either with our senior management team or our lead instructors.  Sometimes, I will pop into the stadium to observe an instructor training session and provide feedback.  Finally, I head out to either teach a second class downtown or meet a friend for dinner.  And, I’m always working on playlists!

What would you consider your theme song?

“Step by Step” (Annie Lennox and Whitney Houston)

The lyrics speak for themselves: “Well there’s a bridge and there’s a river that I still must cross.  As I’m going on my journey, Oh, I might be lost.  And there’s a road I have to follow, a place I have to go.  Well no-one told me how to get there, but when I get there I’ll know…”

Tell us about a “save the day moment”…

My biggest accomplishments are my twin daughters, Kate and Rachel.  I take great pride in knowing I raised two young girls, as a single mom, who have become smart, strong and caring women.  Three years ago, we were on a trip in Paris to celebrate their college graduations when I had “a moment.”  It hit me clearly that the three of us were entering a new phase – they were no longer just my daughters, but friends with whom I would share special adult moments and memories.

Who is your Wonder Woman?

Singer-songwriter and painter Joni Mitchell.  I have always admired her courageousness, confidence and lack of fear when owning her many talents.  Joni’s art, poetry and music never cease to inspire me.

What is your super power?  

I get it all done by ensuring I get enough sleep and by waking up early.  It’s those morning hours before the emails start that I am my most efficient!

What is your arch nemesis?  

Self-doubt and fear of failure have a way of impeding growth and advancement.  When I move past the doubts, everything is positive, but unfortunately I have had to go through this exercise repeatedly to come to this realization!

What is in your Wonder Woman power pack? (Five things you don’t leave home without.)

My iPod and headset for teaching classes, my iPhone, sunglasses, reading glasses and lipstick.

Who is your Sidekick/Partner in Crime?

My sidekick/partner in crime would have to be my close friend, Jake.  Not only is he a great friend, he’s the one always making me laugh in serious meetings and getting me to do things I would never ordinarily do.

Which Superhero do you most identify with and why?

Wonder Woman!  Who doesn’t want to be a woman who can do it all AND fly!  (Pun intended.)

Who is your supporting cast of characters that helps you to achieve Wonder Woman status?  

Aside from my amazing daughters, it’s quite a big group…I would have to say, all of my Flywheel riders.  As much as I give them in a class, they give me even more back.  Their feedback lets me know that I have an impact on their day and that’s what keeps me going, that’s what inspires me to keep doing what I’m doing.

How do you protect (and give back to) your community?

My two main areas of focus are the environment and mentoring young women.  On a daily basis,  I strive to be a conscientious person who adds to the world instead of taking away from it.