I am so honored to be chosen as Member Spotlight for April. Where does my fitness story begin? After ‘retiring’ from 20 years in the business world and watching my youngest son Colin, (NO, not that Colin!) go off to school full days, I felt the pull to better myself in some way. I was introduced to kettlebells from a local trainer in my little neighborhood of Pawtuxet Village. When her business closed she referred me to what is now 212 Health and Performance and my life has never been the same.
I’ve read every single Member Spotlight profile and what is clear to me...212 represents not only the epitome of great fitness training but also, an environment of welcomeness, inclusiveness and camaraderie!! Not a day goes by at 212 when I am not high fived or told, ‘great job, Mary’! I cannot tell you how much this positiveness means to me. Why?
Twenty-nine years ago I was diagnosed with clinical depression/anxiety disorder. Long story short, I am a survivor! With the incredible help of an amazing doctor(s), therapist and medication I am living proof that mental illness does not have to define your life....it can actually make you stronger! What I also know for sure...physical activity greatly affects the serotonin levels in those living with depression/anxiety. Just a one hour class/small group at 212 provides me with that extra kick that makes a not so happy morning turn into spectacular day!
However, it’s not only the fitness aspect of a gym that does it justice. It’s the trainers and staff who truly represent a successful business. And 212 encompasses all of that. From Kerry, who welcomed me with open arms on my initial visit, to Sean, who cracks me up in every class, to Kim, Steve, Alicia, Aura, Heather and the ‘new’ guy, Tony...what a team! But I would be remiss if I didn’t give a big shout out to Colin, my small group trainer who has seen me through two shoulder surgeries and continues to believe that this 53 year old body can keep improving. I am grateful beyond words for each and every one of them.
Lastly, the icing on the cake....my fellow 212 members. I have met the most wonderful and caring people since joining 3 years ago. Their positive energies and friendships strengthen me every day. Finally, I must mention Shayna, my ‘soul’ sister friend, confidante, ‘adopted daughter’ and part-time therapist. She inspires me with her killer strength. She encourages me to work harder, never give up and accepts me, warts and all.
I have a great life...an awesome, seafaring husband, two incredible sons, two loving canine companions (yes, I know..you’ve seen too much of them on Facebook!), supportive friends...and for the last 3 years, an incredible gym which I am proud to call my home away from home. 212 Rocks!