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Not a Jock? Don't worry. Neither am I.

In the classic '80s jock-nerd dichotomy, I always landed firmly on the nerd side. Did the use of the word "dichotomy" perhaps give that away?

So, how, in 2022, at the age of 46 do I find myself not only working out regularly but leading fitness classes?

I have always enjoyed being active, but for a long time, the idea of purposely lifting heavy things and getting sweaty seemed nuts to me, not to mention the fact that entering a gym where tough folks were lifting heavy things, sweating and grunting was ridiculously intimidating. When my youngest son was 6 months old (12 years ago now), I was looking for a way to get back into shape. When a flyer for a local fitness class landed in my mailbox, it felt like fate. I was nervous but I tried it out. The instructor, Drago, was kind and encouraging, and the participants were lovely. I enjoyed the class and loved feeling stronger and having more energy. I attended this class nearly every Saturday morning for 11 years, and I even began to attend a second class offered on weekdays. During the pandemic lockdowns, a friend of mine, Reena, who is only a little bit intimidating, encouraged me to do some online workouts with her. I lifted heavy things and got sweaty, but it was fun to do it with a friend, and I felt really good for having done it. Between Drago's and Reena's workouts, I was working out about 3-5 times a week, in addition to my yoga practices. I felt great! When Drago retired, I decided to get my fitness instructor certification--something I never envisioned for myself! I was certified in March and have been running fitness classes since that time. I love encouraging people, jocks or not, to move their bodies and become stronger and more resilient. As in my yoga classes, participants are asked to work to their own level of ability, and I offer lots of options and modifications.

I started out calling my classes "Boot Camp" classes, mostly for lack of a better description, but it was also kind of funny as I am the farthest thing from a drill sergeant you can find. However, I became concerned that those who don't know me might feel intimidated by the name. I have recently changed the name to "Stronger Together" as I feel that captures the spirit of the classes: a community of people supporting one another on the journey to stronger bodies and better health.

I began teaching these classes online and have opted to keep them there for a few reasons. Firstly, the daytime classes are designed to be short and sweet--only 30 minutes--so that they fit into your day easily. I don't want to add a commute.

Secondly, the Saturday classes are early: 8:30 a.m. This time allows you to start your weekend with a sense of accomplishment and energy. However, it is not a great time for a commute. Rolling out of bed and getting in front of a screen at this time is do-able, but travelling somewhere at this hour is tough, especially in the winter.

Thirdly, it is nice to finish up a class and be able to get into your own shower and into fresh clothes so that you can move smoothly into the rest of your day.

Lastly, I find that even online we can build a sense of community and mutual support. Attending class in real time and having others working out with you is a totally different (and better) experience than following a video by yourself. Participants get to know one another and encourage one another.

A new session of classes is starting the week of September 19. I have a number of class packages available (scroll down for further info), or if you want to try out a class with no commitment, there are drop-in classes available.

Here is the info for the Stronger Together fitness classes I have coming up for September-December 2022:

Classes consist of a mixture of cardio and strength-training exercises, followed by luxurious cool-down stretches.

Participants are asked to work to their level of comfort and ability.

Modifications and options will be provided throughout the class.

Participants will need light and medium weights and a mat.

30-Minute Weekday Classes

Mondays, 6:30-7 p.m.

10 Classes

Sept 19-Dec 12

No class Oct 10, 31 and Dec 5

Thursdays, 12:15-12:45 p.m.

12 Classes

Sept 22-Dec 8

1-Hour Saturday Classes

Saturdays, 8:30-9:30 a.m.

8 Classes

Oct 29-Dec 17

Choose from a variety of class packages that work well with your schedule.

Unlimited Package

Unlimited package (attend any weekday or Saturday class): $250 + HST

Weekday-Only Packages

20 weekday-only class package: $200 + HST

10 weekday-only class package: $120 + HST

Saturday-Only Package

8 Saturday-only class package: $120 + HST

Weekday & Saturday Package

10 weekday + 8 Saturday class package: $200 + HST

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