We had the good fortune of connecting with Tilita (aka ‘Coach T’) Lutterloh and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Tilita (aka ‘Coach T’), what’s the most important lesson your business/career has taught you?
Ooh, such a good question! To trust myself, to be 100% myself, and to create what I would want!
What should our readers know about your business?
The Tilitafied Experience provides coaching services, education, and nutritional support solutions for those who are not satisfied with the status quo. As a High Performance Coach, I help ambitious runners and purpose-driven lifestyle athletes get stronger, run faster, and eat better–the plant-powered way–so they can crush their performance goals without wrecking their bodies. I think there are two main things that set me apart from others: 1. I take a values-rooted, goal-digging approach to this work. I mean, I am the #GoalDigger of high performance after all! What does this mean? I love setting goals and I have high standards for myself as an athlete and a coach, and I love helping others dig deep to help them find solutions to their goals. Before we can do that though, it’s important to explore and clarify one’s core values. If these aren’t clear, one’s goals and actions will not be aligned and therefore, the individual will find a way (consciously or subconsciously) to get out of doing what it actually takes to reach the goal. 2. I’ve been a competitive athlete for most of my life. I have a unique insight to what it truly takes to gain traction towards a goal, and I walk my talk. One of my own core values is excellence, so I don’t settle for the status quo as an athlete, a coach, or simply as a human being. I bring this energy of excellence to all my work with clients, whether it’s a one-on-one session, group program, or a workshop, nudging the just beyond their comfort zone in an attempt to get them to realize their own strengths and power and greatness. That’s being #Tilitafied! I get people to do things they’ve always wanted to do, yet never thought they could. So where does this deep passion and drive for excellence come from? Not sure really, ha! I just know that I’ve had it ever since I was a little girl learning gymnastics for the first time. The day I did my back handspring on my own at the age of 8, a competitor was born, and my goal-digging journey began. The goal-digger in me has always dreamt of being an olympian and competing amongst the best in the world. And I was all set to make that happen as a track & field athlete in 2008 until a horrible knee injury 3 weeks before the Olympic Trials shattered my chances. Needless to say, I was heart-broken, sad, angry, and confused about why this happened. And while I definitely had my fair share of self-pity, I knew my athletic career wasn’t over. After a year and a half of pool and land physical therapy post-surgery, strength and conditioning, and mental training, I worked my way back to a competitive level again, only to get the same injury 5 years later, followed by the same surgery. What’s happening?! I recovered must faster the second time (many factors including my transition to plant-based nutrition and an elevated mindset were key contributors); however, as the went on, the dream felt further and further away. I’ve been forced to do a lot of self-reflection over the years, and one thing I’ve discovered is just how much athletics and competition fuels me. Setting big goals, using my body in an athletic way, and taking on challenges drives me to do my best and show up for myself in a bigger way than the status quo requires. I want that for everyone in the world. I want everyone to have a goal so big and a belief so deep that they are willing to break out of their comfort zone to strive for excellence. And I love coaching go-getters with big goals! All of this of course is the backdrop to my online coaching business. I actually never dreamed of having my own business. I mean, I’ve always known that I like to do things my own way, which doesn’t often bode well when you work for someone else, ha! But having my own business was just never one of those things I put on a vision board or wrote in my goals every year. Sometimes you get blessings in disguise though. And every experience you’ve had in life is what has led you to this very point. That blessing in disguise was me getting fired from a job in 2017. So I didn’t know what was next for me. As Tim Gunn would say, “Make it work.” So I did. After a year of taking online classes and workshops and coaching a few private clients, The Tilitafied Experience was born. And this is one of the things I’m most proud of–my ability to make it work. I’ve had that make it work and make it happen mindset ever since I was a young girl attempting her back handspring by herself, against her coach’s wishes (cuz I knew I could do it!). Has it been easy? Heck naw! Has it been rewarding? 100% The confidence that starting my own business has built inside of me has made it possible to do other things like co-creating LA’s first yoga and wellness co-op, All Kind, with a group of other passionate wellness professionals! I’m happy to be be able to offer some of my work in a more accessible way to more people, as well as work with a team of purposeful leaders. The same way I was able to experience successes in sports am I able to get through challenges in my business and with the co-op: strong set of core values, strong work ethic, strong support system, and a strong belief that I can. Not only can I do it well, I can do it with excellence. #Tilitafied is a goal-digging mindset of high performance and excellence.
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
Such a great question that I probably won’t do justice because I haven’t explored the city as much as I’d like since living here! Let’s see… After our morning workout at the track or my garage, we’d grab an Inglewood Fog or Golden Milk or Matcha latte at Sip and Sonder to start off the day. My bff is almost as big a foodie as I am, so exploring various cuisines at some of my fave spots throughout the city all week long would be high on the priority list. To satisfy our taco obsession, as well as her sweet tooth, we’d hit up Sugar Taco on Melrose and Donut Friend (downtown or Highland Park) to refuel after a few hours of hiking through some of LA’s beautiful mountains. (yikes, some high performance coach I am, ha!) One evening while she’s visiting, we’d grab a couple of kombuchas and an extra large bbq “chicken” pizza topped with pineapple and spinach (from Cruzer’s Pizza) to enjoy as our dinner under the stars during a music performance for a dope Hollywood Bowl experience! And back in my hood, we’d round out the week on a Sunday vibin’ with our community at the Leimert Park drum circle, browsing the many vendors presenting their beautifully made African jewelry and fabrics, incense, books, hair and skincare products, and more! And I couldn’t let her leave Leimert Park without grabbing a vegetarian plate with callaloo from the Jamaican eatery Ackee Bamboo. A visit to the Broad, a drive through Malibu, and a walk through the Watts Towers Art Center would be squeezed in as well ;^)
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
Oh geez, too many to name! I’ll dedicate my shoutout to Mama Lutterloh (that would be Deadra Lutterloh, my mother), Eternal Mind (my King and life partner), and Syreeta Robinson (close friend) who are my three biggest fans in my stands. I’d like to also give a shoutout to the dopest accountability buddies an emerging bright-eyed biz owner could have (Katy Chen Mazzara, Elise Arsenault, and Jennifer Rappo).
Other: The Tilitafied Experience website is still under construction. However, below are a couple of helpful links: –> A video guide for runners who need to open up their hips and want to run faster times: tiny.cc/HipFlossing –> Info for the next round of my online group training program: tiny.cc/SURGE1220 (this link won’t be active until November 20th) –> New York Times Article: https://www.nytimes.com/2020/04/12/sports/coronavirus-fitness-trainers-workouts.html?auth=login-email&login=email&referringSource=articleShare
photos by Sheldon Botler