It was a cold, rainy Monday when I received an email from Kerry congratulating me on being chosen for the member spotlight. I was admittedly shocked, but very honored! I learned about 212 from Kaela Gentile, and am not ashamed to say I read all the previous member spotlights when researching (stalking) the website prior to my first meeting with Colin, and they were all so inspiring to me.
Growing up, I was a competitive dancer and my lifelong dream was to become a Rockette. I came very close when I auditioned in 2002, and my biggest regret is that I never gave it another try. After hanging up my tap shoes after that failure, I started working out in the college gym. I had no idea what I was doing, but I went and stayed active. Upon graduating, I took a job in Boston that required a long daily commute and a lot of hours; AKA I stopped all physical activity and sat on my butt all day long! I still have that financial analyst job today, but I now work from home half the week and have a standing desk in my office when I am in Boston.
During my “sitting on my butt all day long” years, I met my husband Mark, who owns Re-Bath of RI and Southern Mass (anyone need a bathroom remodel???). My step-son, Ryan, is now a Junior at Pilgrim and our son, Nolan, is 7. Ryan has played hockey since he was 5 and Nolan currently plays soccer, basketball, lacrosse and baseball. In other words, my life is a little busy!
When Nolan was born, I unfortunately suffered from post-partum depression for several months. It was during this time that someone suggested I start exercising as a means of therapy. HAHA! When would I have time for that?! I started taking one Zumba class a week, taught by my very good friend Richard. After a few months, that turned into 2 or 3 classes a week. Then one day, I saw a Groupon for a Crossfit class. I was terrified, but I bought it. And then actually used it a few weeks later. When I think back on it, I can’t believe I actually bought a membership after the Groupon period was over. But I did – and I continued on for 3 years!
Somewhere around the 1 year mark, I noticed my shoulder was bothering me during certain movements. It would come and go – somedays I had to modify workouts, and other days it didn’t bother me at all. This continued on for about another year or so. During this time, I met Kaela through gym friends and would have her “fix” me every couple of months. She does amazing work, and I still see her on a regular basis! Even with her magic ways, my shoulder was really starting to impact my everyday life. I gave in, and went to the doctor. Diagnosis – dislocation and torn labrum. Off to the operating table!
I don’t know if my doctor did a horrible job fully explaining what my recovery would be like, or if I just didn’t pay close enough attention, but I was not prepared for the 6 months following my surgery. I was in a fully immobile sling for 2 months and had PT 3x week for 6 months. It took 4 months for me to be able to lift my arm above my head. I went back to Crossfit and worked really hard to get my strength back. However, it just wasn’t feeling right and at that point was terrified of reinjuring myself. I really wanted to just quit working out altogether! I was still seeing Kaela on a regular basis, and she encouraged me to give 212 a try. I am so glad she did!!
As I said before, I stalked everything about 212 online; social media, the website, online reviews – I was very nervous to try something new because of my shoulder. I met with Colin on my first day and we talked for a while about my shoulder, and where I was in my recovery. Then he put me through a “little” workout. It was really hard – and I loved it! I signed up for the 5 weeks, and immediately signed up for a year once that was over. Colin listened to everything I said on that first day, and pushed me further than I thought possible and my shoulder has never felt better! There isn’t much I can’t do and for a while there, I didn’t think that would ever be possible.
There are 3 things that really stand out about 212:
1)The members! Each and every one of you has been very welcoming and never look at me funny when I grab a dumbbell for kettlebell snatches. :)
2) Professionalism! You may not think professionalism is something that matters much in a gym setting, but I think it does and it does not go unnoticed.
3) The Staff! I cannot say enough good things about the staff at 212. From Heather, Kathy and Jess always greeting me with a smile when I walk in at 6 AM to Kerry, Colin, Sean, Alicia, Kiki, Aura, Kim and Steve always pushing me. Each and every workout is different, challenging, but most importantly, FUN!
I would like to give a special thanks to Kerry and Colin for not letting me use my shoulder as an excuse! I look forward to what the future holds for me at 212! Enough shoulder talk – is it time to squat yet?!