Robin Matusik

My co-workers tease me about my obsession. But it's only because they don't understand. 

I've been a part of many sports teams: softball, lacrosse and boys and women's hockey. I've traveled to California for Nationals and Canada for tournaments. I've dislocated a finger and torn an ACL while playing. About four years ago, I decided to run a work sponsored 5K. They brought in 212 to talk to the employees about proper training and running. Colin taught me that hockey players make horrible runners, but introduced me to something I never knew was missing, something that organized sports never taught me. 

I came to 212 and started to learn. I learned what to do with a kettlebell, how to clean barbells and bench press, what ropes and loops were, and how to exhaust yourself with body weight exercises. I never felt judged for not knowing, or inferior for using the yellow bell. The trainers helped me in the middle of class and the members encouraged me to do my best. I graduated to different colored bells and started to lift heavier weights. I ran to the far dumpster and back countless times and learned what straight and trap bars were. I learned that foam rollers are amazing and attended my first yoga class. I raced dragon boats, became a superhero, and made friends while putting on pants in the locker area. I went to picnics and Christmas parties, and learned how to eat healthier and meal plan. 

If you asked me five years ago if I'd enjoy lifting weights and going to the gym, I'd have looked at you funny and thought you were crazy. Today, I'm the crazy one. I go to the gym 4 times per week and have gained about 15 pounds of muscle in four years! Now I'm the one that asks our new hires if they like going to the gym...and then my co-workers tease me. But like I said, it's because they don't understand. 

They don't understand that it's not just a gym. It's a gym full of friends and trainers who genuinely care. It's a gym that has embraced me as part of the team and a gym that I look forward to going to after an 8 hour day at work. It's a gym that emails me and asks if I'm okay when I don't show up for a week (my parents were in town). And a gym that has taught me how to exercise and make healthy choices. It's a gym that I've had "non-gym" experiences with and a gym that has introduced me to so many people. That's why they don't understand, and no one would if you've never been to 212...because it's a gym like no other.