To Top

Exploring Life & Business with Rodrick Lopez of ROLOATHLETICS

Today we’d like to introduce you to Rodrick Lopez.

Hi Rodrick, please kick things off for us with an introduction to yourself and your story.
I started college as a music performance major. I thought I would be playing percussion at concerts around the world. It was my first true love – music.

While I was happy with music, I also enjoyed working out but had no idea what the heck I was doing. I would go to the gym and do curls and bench press every day. Sometimes I would run around the neighborhood for hours with no goals.

I started looking for another hobby outside of music that would help me get into better shape. I had never played sports. Except for some low-level kid pitch when I was young. I toyed with the idea of joining a recreational team while pursuing my degree.

Nothing caught my attention until a friend of mine posted on Facebook. He said, ” Go watch the CrossFit Games on ESPN news.”

Shoutout to my parents for having all the channels because who the heck has ESPN news?

Anyway, I watched in astonishment as these people who I strived to look like competed in CrossFit.

At the end of the program, it said that you can find a gym near you by going to this website. I checked it out and the closest gym to me was .4 miles away. I shot them a call and scheduled a trial workout for the following day.

At my trial class, I fell in love.

I asked a lot of questions at the beginning of my fitness journey that no one seemed to have the answers to.

I asked, “How can I get stronger?”. They answered, “Lift more weights.” I asked, “How do I gain muscle?” they said, “Eat more.”

I became frustrated with lack of specificity. I wanted direction.

I found CrossFit during winter break from school. The following semester a buddy of mine told me to take Kinesiology 146. I had no idea what Kinesiology was but he said we would learn about working out and I said, “I’m in.”

This class changed the path of my life for good. It was an intro to resistance training. It was the first time I seek more information from the teachers and did a ton of research on my own.

After having the most fun, I have ever had in a class, I decided to change my major to Kinesiology. Kinesiology is the study of human movement.

Fast forward a few months and I landed a coaching job at a CrossFit gym.

I coached at that gym for my entire college career.

While in college, I found all the answers about the exercise I was looking for. I also learned how to find the answers to new questions I would have throughout my career.

When I finished my degree, I got the opportunity to coach full-time at a gym in San Diego.

The owners of the gym were incredible and taught me so much in the short 1.5 years I was with them. Unfortunately, the gym got flooded by a construction mishap in downtown San Diego. We were all devastated.

From there, I felt lost. I did get the opportunity to coach at another gym across town. Some of the members from the gym that flooded ended up there as well.

It was nice to see familiar faces but the leadership at the gym was not the same.

Over the next three years, I spent my time trying to figure out what I wanted to do. I thought I had landed my dream job but it got taken away overnight.

At the new gym, I found that I enjoyed working 1-1 with athletes. Group classes were great but the pay did not cover my living expenses. I decided to limit the amount of group classes I coached and focused on working 1-1 with athletes.

1-1 coaching paid more and gave me the opportunity to develop deeper relationships.

Coaching 1-1 meant creating programs that helped your athletes achieve their goals faster! Seeing their progress was satisfying.

About two years into working at that gym, I decided I wanted to create a place people could go to learn more about fitness. A place they could get specific answers! Not the answers I got at the beginning of my journey.

That is when ROLOATHLETICS was born. I started a website that had ebooks available and blogs that touched on common issues I saw in the gym. From nutrition, movement, and workout ideas to finances and mindset!

As that continued to grow, I had the crazy idea to start a supplement company. The supplement would help my athletes get more out of their workouts. After months of research and development, it was finally released!

As my time became committed to ROLOATHLETICS, I decided to go out on my own.

*I need to mention I did none of this alone and had so much incredible support and help from friends and family.

I ended up opening my own facility.

ROLOATHLETICS is not a gym. ROLOATHLETICS is a place where we help everyone unlock their full potential.

Since working together some of my athletes have done amazing things. An athlete quit her corporate job and started pursuing her passion. A few others have started their own companies!

The athletes I work with pursue their goals in and out of the gym with support like no other. ROLOATHLETICS is their home.

Can you talk to us a bit about the challenges and lessons you’ve learned along the way. Looking back would you say it’s been easy or smooth in retrospect?
We have hit some big challenges along the way.

– Leaving my first gym to move to San Diego was tough. I was comfortable there. It was also in my hometown. It was all I knew.

– The gym in San Diego flooding was devastating. I thought I was going to be there the rest of my life. I’ll be honest I had depression for months. Losing your job and all your income overnight is a crazy feeling. Since then, I have made a lot of decisions to make sure this never happens again!

– Moving to a new gym was hard. Rebuilding myself in a new place was daunting.

– The leadership in the new gym was not the same. It was hard to find a sense of direction.

– When starting the website, I thought it would go live and become successful. Oh, being young and naive. Building a website, starting a business, and doing it on your own was tough.

*For those looking to start a business make sure you have headphones because you will be on the phone ALL THE TIME.

– Leaving the last gym was bittersweet. I was once again going to have to tackle obstacles I had never faced before. Finding a facility, signing a lease, buying equipment, insurance, etc…

– I did not mention this before but throughout all this growth, I also did a few other things! I got married. We adopted a dog. We bought a condo, sold the condo (after only nine months of living there), and bought a house (wifey needed to move for work)!

– COVID became a big obstacle at the end of working for the last gym. I rented a facility and quit in the middle of COVID and had to focus on ALL ONLINE sales to carry us over.

– While we faced many challenges, each one was a great lesson. I am thankful to have tackled them with the people I have around me.

Alright, so let’s switch gears a bit and talk business. What should we know?
ROLOATHLETICS has become a hub for unlocking potential. I have always been passionate about helping people achieve their goals. I dislike vague answers. I wanted to bring together incredible people that can help each other grow in and outside of the gym.

While our focus is fitness, we take a holistic approach. Our facility and community is people’s happy place. They come here to bounce ideas off of each other. They also get to pursue excellence in their physical and mental capabilities.

We are very particular with the athletes we work with. We want to work with individuals with a growth mindset. Those looking to make their wildest dreams come true. Someone who can take constructive criticism and also provide value to the community.

I am most proud of fostering a place where everyone supports each other and wants to see everyone win.

I love 1-1 coaching and running the supplement company at ROLOTHLETICS. I am also proud to be a part of two companies athletes at ROLOATHLETICS started.

Shawna Norton runs a program called Competitive Female training. It is run out of ROLOATHLETICS. It is a CrossFit program designed for women with women’s needs in mind. It is women only. Shawna focuses on ensuring women have adequate access to information. Information about their hormones, cycles, and physical and nutritional needs throughout. She also started a program designed for women in perimenopause, menopause, and post. Her passion is incredible and I am so happy to be a part of something so amazing with her.

Alysia Lay runs a program called Fitness For All at ROLOATHLETICS. She runs classes for kids and adults with disabilities. She wants to provide a space where everyone has the opportunity for growth. She also runs 1-1 private training for kids and adults with disabilities.

Do you any memories from childhood that you can share with us?
I have so many awesome childhood memories. Shoutout to my parents for being incredible.

This is random but it is the first one that popped into my head.

My parents had me go with them to some plant place. It was outside and they had massive palm trees and other plants for sale.

While walking around, I mentioned to my dad that the new Razor scooter came out today.

Expecting him to tell me. “It’s too expensive.” or “We will wait a few months to check it out.” (Those were my parent’s typical responses.) Instead he said, “Maybe we will go check them out today.”

I shut my mouth for the rest of the day so I did not say anything that would put this opportunity at risk.

We got home and after a few hours…nothing. I thought he had forgot but I did NOT want to mention it.

A few hours later, my dad says, “Hey, let’s go.”

We hop in the car and drive right to Sports chalet. My dad walks up to the Razor scooter pile that was sitting at the front of the store. He grabs one from the pile, walks to checkout, pays $98.99, and hands me the scooter box.

I thought to myself, “That was the easiest transaction in history.”

I still have this scooter too! I got it in 2000. 21 years ago. I was seven.

Even typing this, I get giddy with excitement thinking about it. I had many good times on that bad boy.


  • My supplement Creolyte $40
  • Competitive Female Training $29.00/month
  • Apparel/Merch at ROLOATHLETICS Ranges from $5.00-$40.00
  • Coffee at ROLOATHLETICS $16-$20

Contact Info:

Image Credits:

Jacob Avanzato

Suggest a Story: VoyageLA is built on recommendations from the community; it’s how we uncover hidden gems, so if you or someone you know deserves recognition please let us know here.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

More in local stories