Like many of us, Elevate member Lori John put her family’s needs ahead of her own and carving out enough time to focus on her own health and fitness proved to be a challenge. But this year she was able to overcome that challenge. Lori started exercising on a regular basis, but when winter weather made it too difficult to continue walking outside, she found her way to Elevate.Q: How long have you been a member? What keeps bringing you back?
I have been a member since January 2019. I keep coming back because I like the people,environment, and the classes. Also when I signed up I got the New Year’s special rate.
Q: Why do you exercise? What benefits do you see?
I exercise because I want to have a strong body as I get older. I see my parents struggle doing things that they had always done, and I don’t want to go that route if I don’t have to. The benefits I’ve seen is in my muscle tone start to improve, my A1C has decreased, and I feel better. My clothes fit differently as well which meant I got to go shopping!
Q: What are some challenges you face and how did you overcome them?
One challenge is to give myself the time to go to Elevate classes. So to make sure I follow through on this promise to myself I stay at work until it’s time to travel to the gym and bring my clothes with me each time so I don’t go home first.
Q: What advice would you give to others who might be facing similar challenges?
Decide that you are worth the investment, both time and money…Our lifestyle today is not like it was for our parents or grandparents. We don’t live in the same manner or culture, so most of us have to make exercise a regular routine. It doesn’t come naturally anymore.
Q: What change, be it physical or mental, has most surprised you?I’m surprised at how I feel when I walk out the door after class. I might be very hot and very sweaty, but I feel good. I’m also surprised at how I look forward to going. I am also happy about the connections I’m making with different people. Widening my circle.
Q: What do you do for fun? For yourself?
I’m still figuring out what I like to do for fun, life was too busy when my kids were little. Now that they are older, I have some extra time for me. I like to cook (on my terms), I like to go camping (in a tent), love the beach. I also go kayaking and just a month ago I started to golf again. I have been going to a massage therapist once a month for just about 19 years. Life revolves around my massage nights!
Q: What changes have you seen in yourself since beginning a regular exercise program?
The number on the scale hasn’t gone down in a long time, but people have commented on how well I’m doing. I don’t see it when I look in the mirror. So the changes they are seeing have to be from coming to Elevate.
Q: What would you say to those who might feel intimidated by the idea of walking into the gym and starting a workout program?
You’ll probably mentally compare yourself to other people there, but remind yourself that you are there for you. Not for anyone else. Their journey and reasons for being there are their own-just as you are looking to improve something in yourself. Instructors will offer modifications for pretty much everything so it will be your work out at your level. You can do this—you’re worth it!