Fitness Rockstar: Hilary

Summer/Fall 2011 & Winning 3rd place in TK-Fit Summer BootCamp 2012

Summer/Fall 2011 & Winning 3rd place in TK-Fit Summer BootCamp 2012

 

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Summer/Fall 2015

Summer/Fall 2015

What town do you live in and why have you chosen the Berkshires as the place to currently live?

I live and teach/coach in Pittsfield.  I was born and raised in Pittsfield and returned after college.  I grew up playing sports and loved my experiences on the playing field and in school and I wanted to come back and (hopefully) provide those same experiences for my students and players.  I also absolutely love the Berkshires and all that they have to offer.  Whether it’s going to a play, a museum, a new restaurant, hiking, skiing, anything really, I love it all! The four seasons each offer something different and there’s always something new to explore.  Plus, my family all live nearby and that’s very important to me! (Hi Mom!)

What would be one word to describe yourself?

How about a couple? Optimistic, adventurous, diverse.

When did you join Tricia’s fitness classes?

I went to my first class, kickboxing, at the community center in January 2012, during free week of course ;) I was in my first year of teaching in Springfield at the time and my commitment to exercise had taken a backseat to all of the challenges of being a new teacher and also commuting back and forth every day.  I look back now and hate that excuse, I bet that had I paid more attention to my health and fitness, I would have been less worn out.  I remember a conversation with a retired teacher who found out I was entering my first year of teaching and his advice was, “don’t stop working out.” I laughed it off like, THAT’S that best advice you’ve got for a new teacher??  Now I can’t imagine not going to class, especially after teaching all day.

How did you feel the first time you attended TKfit?

I was nervous! I went with my sister and (honestly) thought I had it in the bag.  I got my butt kicked and loved it – after I regained the ability to walk and use the stairs.

How do you feel now when you walk into class?

Excited to see everyone and ready for an awesome workout.  No matter the mood I’m in, I know that going to class will HELP.  I remember a cardio blast class last year, I fell on ice outside my door, was covered in mud, probably cried a little, but changed and went to class and felt TEN TIMES better after – from seeing everyone and the awesome workout.

Favorite workout item?

Old Navy activewear! I think I have about 10 pairs of their workout pants!

If you were telling a friend about class what would you say to convince them to come?

Two things.  One, class is always different!  You never know what to expect and I love that.  I am sadly uncreative when it comes to designing my own workouts and I love that I can just show up and be led through a fun, challenging work out.  Two, the community.  I consider every member of TK-Fit a friend and I love the genuine, positive motivation that we provide one another.  There is always someone there to pick you up during a tough workout or a hard day.

What would you say is your biggest athletic accomplishment to date?

I would say training for and completing the Steel Rail Half Marathon.  That was a huge challenge as I am not big into running, but I am at least glad to say that I completed a half marathon.  Also, agreeing to participate in Winter Bootcamp!! Can’t believe I ever said no!

Tell us advice about fitness that has really impacted you.

Over the past few years I’ve noticed that it is really about balance. I’ve become a lot more in tune with my own body and I understand more about what exercise and foods make me feel best and strongest.  Similar to my answer above, it seems like sometimes people think there is a “one size fits all” approach to fitness but I think it completely depends on the person; listening to your own body is key.  Finally, finding activities that I enjoy has been so helpful! I LOVE going to classes, I make that a priority.  I’m not crazy about running, I’ll go for a hike instead.  I want to be outside during Winter (sometimes), I’ll ski.  Coaching is a double bonus – teaching athletes and fitness in one!

What do you do for self care?

Yoga! After completing my training (yay!) I realized how much I’ve learned about myself, physically and mentally and I really go to a great place whenever I practice yoga.  I love to read and get to sleep early – ask any of my friends, little to no chance of a returned text after 9pm during the week.  I also saw a great quote on a fellow TK-Fitter’s Instagram (shout out to Brittany!) that said “stop the glorification of busy” – I LOVED that.  We all need to slow down once in awhile and also realize that it’s okay to do that.

What’s your favorite healthy snack? Your favorite indulgence?

Healthy – Any fruit or veggies (can someone come and cut them up for me??) and avocado toast
Indulgence – Turkey grinder from Angelina’s and Ayelada frozen yogurt (cookie dough on top of course)

How have your fitness goals changed since joining TKFit?

I’ve gone from a “lose weight” mindset to a “stay healthy & feel good” mindset.  The strength is an awesome add on!  It is so important to pay attention to and take care of our bodies – we only get one!
Favorite TKfit power move?

Squats, love ‘em.  Dark Horse all day.

What is your next fitness goal?

I just completed my huge goal of becoming a certified yoga teacher – I would love to begin teaching in the near future.  I also would like to continue to improve my soccer and softball coaching knowledge/techniques/abilities and help my high school student-athletes become stronger leaders in their schools and on their teams.  I think that there is a TON of information regarding health/fitness available and I feel like, as an adult, I’m only now understanding it and I’d like to help my student-athletes make sense of it and to understand their own bodies in a healthy way.

What’s something about you that might surprise others to know about you?

I am now a certified yoga teacher, I used to speed skate when I was younger, and I can wiggle my ears!

What keeps you coming back to TKfit classes?
The amazing community of men and women and the always challenging, always fun workouts.  I never know what to expect and I love that.
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Fitness Rockstar: Chrissie

I get emotional writing about Chrissie because the transformation that has occurred in her is so inspiring. We say the word “strong” a lot at TK-Fit and one might equate that to mean how much muscle accumlulated but it’s not the only definition. “Strong” can mean taking what life has thrown you and making the decision to be powerful. 

Chrissie’s very first experience to TK-Fit was week 1 of Winter BootCamp snow shoeing through Kennedy Park. Many could argue that this is one of the most difficult workouts I put my clients through. I’m so glad she didn’t go running away, she kept up with week 1 and all the weeks after and was a force throughout Winter BootCamp. Chrissie continued to come to regular classes every week.  A transformation was in the making. She was slowly whittling down her waist, her arms, her legs and I also saw her confidence grow. As that confidence grew we got to see more of her wit. Her personality is a big part of what makes coming to TK-Fit so much fun. 

Chrissie came up to me at the end of one Saturday class, looked me in the eye and simply said “Thank you. For everything”. We both understood.  It something I’ll never forget and it makes me feel so grateful for what’s going on here at TK-Fit. Chrissie – I can’t wait to cheer you on as you accomplish yet another goal this Sunday at the Steel Rail Half Marathon!

 

2012 - You might recognize former Rockstar and Chrissie's sister, Martha!

2012 – You might recognize former Rockstar and Chrissie’s sister, Martha!

2013

2013

Look at Chrissie (and Martha!) now - all of that hard work has paid off!

Look at Chrissie (and Martha!) now – all of that hard work has paid off!

What town do you live in and why have you chosen the Berkshires as the place to currently live?   
I live in Lee with my husband and two kids.  We were both raised here.  The Berkshires has a great natural environment with a diverse community.  It’s a great place to live.
 
What would be one word to describe yourself?
Determined
 
When did you join Tricia’s fitness classes?  
I first attended Winter Outdoor Boot Camp in February 2014.
 
How did you hear about the class?  
A friend posted a flyer on Facebook for Boot Camp.
 
If you were telling a friend about class what would you say to convince them to come?
With TK-Fit you get results if you put in the time and effort.  You can modify exercises to fit your strength and skill level.  You might be sore afterwards, but it’s a good feeling once your jeans start getting baggy.
 
What exercise during classes have you found most challenging?
Push-ups are my nemesis while running for any length of time is next.
 
What would you say is your biggest athletic accomplishment to date?
Last year I ran six 5K’s with my sisters.  I never, ever would have thought I would have run one, never mind six.
 
What is your next fitness goal?
I plan to run the Steel Rail Half Marathon in May 2015.
 
Tell us advice about fitness that has really impacted you.
Fitness isn’t about being skinny.  It’s about developing strength- both physically and mentally.  Being fit can help you heal wounds, even those you can’t see from the outside.  Finding a group, like TK-Fit, that you can enjoy working out with is definitely a bonus.
 
What’s something about you that might surprise others to know about you?
I am scared of the dark.  Never leave me without a flash light.  Please.
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Fitness Rockstar: Linda

What makes it “click” for someone that they are ready to make a change? What is the motivation for becoming a more healthy, more confident and more alive version of themselves?

I’ve been a personal trainer and fitness instructor for over 12 years now. There are things that have become very clear regarding whether someone will have success in losing weight and adapting a healthier lifestyle. It’s very clear to me that the drive has to come from WITHIN. No one can convince you that you should work out or that you should lose weight. Somewhere inside of you, there is a commitment that is made. I will make MY health a priority even if it means putting that above other things.

It’s very clear to me when it clicked for Linda. It was during Summer BootCamp in July of 2014. Together with her sister Kathy she came to the first class. She joked and smiled but I could see she was nervous. However, there is strength when working out with a supportive partner and she felt relief that her sister was there. Fast forward to the 3rd week in BootCamp and a conversation she and I had before the class started. She turned to me and said, “I’ve been looking forward to this class all day. This is FUN.”  That’s the CLICK.

Linda had found a program that didn’t feel like such a chore. This program wasn’t a silver bullet that was going to make her lose inches within days, rather this was a program where she was going to earn every calorie lost,  keep it off and have some fun doing it.

There are few as dedicated as Linda, she impresses me every day. She is one of the best things to happen to TK-Fit from Summer to now. I feel lucky to have gotten to know her better and to have given her the resources to become a stronger more confident version of herself. I’m excited to see her keep achieving. The sky’s the limit!

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What town do you live in and why have you chosen the Berkshires as the place to currently live?

I live in Lenox.  I grew up in Lenox Dale. When I married in 1991, I moved 2 miles away to Lenox.  In 1993 I moved another 2 miles in Lenox to the house we built.  There are many places we have looked to moving to but they just don’t compare to home. However I would move to a house near the ocean. Go ahead, twist my arm.

 

What would be one word to describe yourself?

One word to describe myself, ….. Currently, determined.

 

When did you join Tricia’s fitness classes? 

I joined TK-Fit on July 7, 2014, Summer BootCamp. It was a Tuesday night, hot, she made us run up hills. Oh yes, I remember it well.

 

How did you hear about the class? 

I used to go to Berkshire Bagel almost every morning and Tricia had a flyer on the wall. I wanted to go but did not think I had the time.  Then, I saw the BootCamp post on Facebook and I signed up.

 

If you were telling a friend about class what would you say to convince them to come? 

I always tell people to just go and try it. You don’t have to be in great shape, you will get there. If you can walk you can workout. The first step is going.  You will be surprised at what you CAN do.    You will not find a better group of people to spend your most powerful hour of the day with. Most of all you will never be bored. Tricia’s workouts are loaded with surprises.

 

What exercise during classes have you found most challenging? 

There are 2 exercises that vex me. Mountain climbers. Grrrr, mountain climbers. I could not do them. I would do 3 then stop. Then maybe 3 more if I was lucky. Now, I am much better at them. I like when we do them in groups of 2.  Having someone coach you and cheer you on is a great motivator.  Plus they share their tips with you.  They are not easy, but I can do them now.  The other is Get Down, Get Up.  This one I still can’t do. Why is it do hard to get up? One of these days I am going to do it and we are all going to celebrate!

 

What would you say is your biggest athletic accomplishment to date?   

My greatest athletic accomplishment so far is running.  I am not a runner. Last year I ran 3 5K’s. I ran some and walked some.  This year, with the Winter BootCamp 5K, I cut 9 minutes from last years best time.  My legs are stronger, I have more endurance, and a lot more confidence.

 

What is your next fitness goal?

I have 2 more goals. First, is to run the 1/2 marathon with TK-Fit.  If I can walk it, I can run it. That’s what I keep telling myself. Second, I want to loose 15 more pounds. I want to do this through diet and exercise. It can take a while. I have the time to do it the right way and a strong support group to see me through.

 

Tell us advice about fitness that has really impacted you. 

I was very unhappy with the way I looked and how I felt.  I did all kinds of diets, tried hard core workout tapes at home, joined gyms, and spent silly money on any program that said they could ” fix me ” in as little as 30 days. Yet, I was still broke. Then I signed up for Summer BootCamp.  Tricia did not promise me she was going to fix me.  She showed me how to do a Tabata. She made me frog hop across the Soccer field. She made me run hills, forward, backwards and bear crawl.  When I thought I could not run another hill she said, ” I think you have one more in you.”  I was hooked. I started to go to regular classes.  When I wanted to get more results she went over my food/drinking choices with me. I listened to the rep goals others were making and I tried to follow suit.  I took part in 4 major challenges. The TK-Fit Holiday Challenge, Sugar Detox, The Whole Life Challenge, and Winter BootCamp. In 6 months I lost 30 pounds. I won the Winter Bootcamp weight loss challenge, and cut 9 minutes off of my best 5K time in 2014. I am stronger both inside and out.  I eat cleaner and drink less. I may even need to go shopping soon. :)

 

If you wrote an autobiography what would be the title?

I would call my autobiography: Finding Me

 

What’s something about you that might surprise others to know about you?

What people DO know about me is that I hate to run. What people DON’T know about me is that running the Boston Marathon has been on my bucket list for a really long time.   One of these days I am going to run it!

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Fitness Rockstar: Erin

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Erin – this woman is a ROCKSTAR! She is a mother of 3, a successful professional and  a woman who is committed to good health. Erin is a total sweetheart and I appreciate that she supports me and everyone she works out with in class. She has such a warm smile, but don’t let that fool you into thinking she is anything less than a strong woman who gives her all at every workout.  In her interview below she says something that means so much to me – she writes that TK-Fit has changed her on the inside as well as the outside. Wow. That is powerful. 

As a personal trainer and fitness instructor, I want my clients to see the physical results that exercise brings, but hearing that I am helping others FEEL better, stronger, and more confident is what it truly is all about for me.  This is is why I started TK-Fit and why I look forward to teaching every class.

Thank you Erin for being such a huge part of each week at TK-Fit, for inspiring us to do it all no matter how busy life is and for sharing more about yourself. I learned so much about you from this interview, I know others will too! 

 

What town do you live in and why have you chosen the Berkshires as the place to currently live?

I live in Pittsfield.  We arrived in 2000.  We were living in Pennsylvania and looked on a map to see where  is half way between Pennsylvania where my husband is from and the Cape where I am from.  The middle was actually somewhere in New Jersey and we just couldn’t do that!

When did you join Tricia’s fitness classes?

February 2013

How did you hear about the class?

Renee Lein and Jennifer Charbonneau – former work colleagues.  I have run 2-4 miles regularly for years, but was not getting the same results.  They told me about the class, I went to my  first Boot Camp Class – could not walk for days!

If you were telling a friend about class what would you say to convince them to come?

You will work so hard, and feel so good. And, don’t worry about all the “woohooing” it’s what we do.

What exercise during classes have you found most challenging? 

I think anyone in class can answer that for me…BURPEES!

What would you say is your biggest athletic accomplishment to date?

ARMS!!  When my mother told me I had “Michelle Obama arms”.  But, I also know that I have changed more internally from this class than outward appearance.  I am stronger from the inside out.

What is your next fitness goal? 

I will be 50 this year, so I am committing to this with all of you as witnesses to do 50 ks for 50 years.  I will do enough road race kilometers to equal my age, starting with…. The Steel Rail Half Marathon!

Tell us advice about fitness that has really impacted you.

I came to an “AHA” moment about fitness and more importantly TK-Fit recently.  We all are broken in some way- some have suffered tremendously, others of us have struggled with food, exercise, health, relationships, work for a long time.  Some of us may not realize our brokenness while others have been trying desperately to repair themselves for years.

And being physically strong can help us realize through our bodies that we can be strong in so many more ways!  We can begin to repair all of our brokenness through hard work, sore muscles, goals, support, challenges.  Tricia has created a space where any person can enter – but I am a bit happy it is mostly women – something so cool about all that female energy.  It is truly a gift.

If you wrote an autobiography what would be the title? 

To Laugh Often and Much

What’s something about you that might surprise others to know about you? 

I taught snowboarding in Vail/Beaver Creek in the early 90s.  I was actually one of the first  PSIA female instructors.  Sadly, I haven’t been on a board in years, I changed to skiing when my kids started, and now we hardly go.  But, now that I’ll be 50….

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Fitness Rockstar: Nicole

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Nicole with family in April 2012 & May 2013

 

Nicole after the Memorial Day race in May 2014 & most recently

Nicole after the Memorial Day race in May 2014 & most recently

 

 

 

Nicole!!! How easy it is to love her!! Her contagious laugh makes us all laugh and she brings a big dose of humor and compassion to our classes. Nicole likes to keep it real. She’ll express when she’s working hard and she’ll tell you when she’s damn proud of herself for that work. I am personally so proud of her. I have watched her transform her body and her confidence. It has been incredible and empowering to see.

 

 Nicole is the type of person that is so genuine that when she tells you something is worthwhile, you want to try it too. She has recruited so many friends to TK-Fit and I’m so thankful for that. She has told me that after many years of trying different exercise programs this is the first time that she has felt successful and now loves to work out. What an incredible testament to her hard work and what we’ve got going at TK-Fit!

 

 Nicole is currently training for the Steel Rail Half Marathon and I can’t wait to see her cross that finish line and celebrate all the hard work she puts in weekly. Nicole – thank you for supporting all of us and for providing us inspiration. I hope you’ll all read more about what makes Nicole so special to our TK-Fit community.

 

What town do you live in and why have you chosen the Berkshires as the place to currently live?

I have lived in Lee for the last ten years.  I am from New York but came here in 1996 shortly after graduating college for a job.

 

What would be one word to describe yourself?

There are so many words to describe my self but I think I like Fun the most.

 

When did you join Tricia’s fitness classes?

I started Saturday morning classes in July of 2013.

 

How did you hear about the class?

I heard about Tricia’s classes back a few years ago from Carol Way but laughed and told her that I DONT exercise.  The summer of 2013, I knew many people that were doing the summer bootcamp and I told myself that I didnt have time for it but was trying to focus on exercising so I started the Saturday am classes.

 

If you were telling a friend about class what would you say to convince them to come?

I would tell anyone wanting to join that you will see results, feel good about yourself and laugh with some amazing people.

 

What exercise during classes have you found most challenging?

There are many exercises that I find challenging but that is what makes them better.  When I first started, Tricia had just started tabatas and I could not even finish one set for 20 seconds no matter what the exercise is.  Now I just expect Tricia to have us do 5 tabatas with BURPEES included!!!

 

What would you say is your biggest athletic accomplishment to date?

I have never been a runner for many reasons and while I am still not a fan of running I find it a challenge.  I have wanted to do the Josh for a long time but I don’t ride a bike, not really good at kayaking unless going nowhere so running was my only option.  I wanted to do it with my father but he lives in flat NY and was not ready for the hills  that the route entails.  Susan Teigen approached me and we formed a team for Amber.  I cant believe that it was my first 10k and I did it under a hour!

 

What is your next fitness goal?

I would love to try for the steel rail half marathon in May.

 

If you wrote an autobiography what would be the title?

Shut up…My family and friends are always waiting for me as I can never stop talking to people.

 

What’s something about you that might surprise others to know about you?

I am very sensitive and insecure about myself.  These classes have helped as well as just being in a better place in my life, but most people who don’t know me well do not know this about me.

 

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Fitness Rockstar Karen Zinchuk

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Karen Z is what I call her and I’m telling you, I love this woman! She brings such spunk to every class I can’t help but smile when I see her, whether at 5:30 in the morning or 5:30 at night, whether it’s in winter or in a torrential downpour in summer  (she’s in the white hat pictured above)- she brightens up the day. 

Karen is one of my very first TK-Fit clients.  When I started in March 2008 at the Lenox Community Center teaching one class on Monday nights, she was there. Sometimes only 4 people would be in attendance and Karen would be one of them.  TK-Fit has experienced change and growth and lots of new attendees and Karen has been there during most of it with optimistic encouragement for me and everyone she meets in class.  She deserves to be a Rock Star because she inspires all of us with the fun she brings to our fitness classes but also because of her fitness levels in endurance, strength and flexibility. She’s raised 3 kids and has always been an involved parent in their activities and sports and now with her youngest in college, it’s nice to see she’s taking some time to keep pushing herself to keep improving. All of her dedication is MOST definitely paying off, have you seen her?  She looks so fit and youthful. 

Here’s her interview and I can hear her expression and voice when I read these answers. You won’t want to miss it:

“Wow!  A TK-Fit Rockstar!  Hmmm, It’s funny, I don’t really consider myself a rockstar.  It’s not that I’m not flattered but I believe that anyone who gets through Tricia’s classes is a rockstar!  They are tough but I wouldn’t want it any other way.  It’s such an accomplishment when you finish one of her classes.

I have worked out on and off most of my life and my weight has been up and down.   I was quite chubby in my younger years and my mother was always on me about my weight.  I was first introduced to exercise (outside of PE classes in school) in my junior year in high school when I decided to take up Karate.  I was very disciplined and lost a lot of weight; I felt and looked good.   Then came the “freshmen 15″ … and then some.  It wasn’t until I started working at GE that I decided I needed to do something so I joined Elaine Powers and later on a couple other gyms.  I even taught classes at Better Bodies and Berkshire West and was back in shape.  Then the kids got older and between homework and their sports I slacked off on my workout time.

It wasn’t until I joined Tricia’s classes that I realized that I really need to make time for myself and get back into the fitness world.  I started feeling good about myself again and really looked forward to going to all of her classes.  Fitness is a part of my life again thanks to Tricia and all of my many friends that I workout with!  Thank you all for your wonderful support!”

What town do you live in and why have you chosen the Berkshires as the place to currently live?

I live in Lenox with my husband, two sons and daughter.  After several relocations due to my father’s Army and GE career we finally settled in the Berkshires in 1972.  I met my husband Mike (from Franklin, MA) at GE and married in 1983.  He became involved with the ambulance and fire department in Lenox and felt a strong connection to the Lenox community.  So we decided to settle here and have a family which we are very happy we did.

What would be one word to describe yourself?

Optimistic!

When did you join Tricia’s fitness classes?

I first tried Tricia’s classes when she first began in March 2008.  I had, at the time, belonged to another fitness club which I didn’t feel comfortable or a belonging there.  Also, the class times didn’t fit into my schedule.  So I finished out my membership and reconnected with Tricia and am soooooooooooooo happy I did!

How did you hear about the class?

I had first heard about Tricia’s classes through a co-worker at LMMHS who knew Tricia.

If you were telling a friend about class what would you say to convince them to come?

I would say:  If you want a head-to-toe workout with a motivated, tough, totally insane and passionate instructor who goes to bed dreaming up new and challenging workouts just for you and attend a variety of never boring classes with a wonderful, fun-loving group of women (and at times some men) where you can’t help but develop a special friendship with each and every one of them, then this is the class for you!!!  (Now, before any of you teachers say anything, I do believe that this was a run-on sentence! “smiley face” )

What exercise during classes have you found most challenging?

Well, I really have two:  mountain climbers (UGH …. They just never seem to get easier!) and push ups (although it’s partly because I’m really working on doing them correctly … brownie points? …)  Oh, okay, guess I have three … those damn hills!

What would you say is your biggest athletic accomplishment to date?

Strength!  I am just now realizing that I DO HAVE MUSCLES!  My legs, arms, abs, (still working on my a–!) are becoming stronger and tighter … hoping someday soon I can say I have a “tight end”!

What is your next fitness goal?

Hmmmm … I think it would be to work on my running … I really hate running.  I have made it through one road race “back in the day” and for some reason have been intimidated every since.  Maybe I’ll get the courage to try another one.

Tell us advice about fitness that has really impacted you.

I think that attending as many classes as you can, even on those days when you’re tired and cranky, will help you feel better both physically and mentally.  On those tired days you may not be able to put your “all” into it but just knowing that you did something for yourself will override those feelings.  Always, always make/take the time for yourself.  I know a lot of women have young children who are very involved (trust me, I have been there) but if you can fit in a little daily exercise, you’ll get back a little energy to get you through the day/night.  Oh, one more thing:  Joining the fitness “challenges” helps you to be more conscious of what and how much you eat and drink, and how that combined with water consumption and exercise are essential components to fitness.

If you wrote an autobiography what would be the title?

“Expect the Unexpected” …. bet you didn’t expect that!

What’s something about you that might surprise others to know about you?

I might be a little OCD about organization.  Everything has to be in its place.  Funny thing though … if you dropped by my house “unexpectedly” you’d never believe me because, you see, my family doesn’t share in that notion.

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Fitness Rockstar Martha Guinan

Martha walked on to the field at Summer BootCamp and looked a little uncertain. If new to any type of classes you may wonder, “what is this all about?” and “is this really for me?” I had met her sister Chrissie during Winter BootCamp and knew that if Chrissie had been the one to convince Martha to come and join up for the next 6 weeks of tough workouts, Chrissie would certainly be convincing to get her to stick with it. Martha week by week showed fierce determination. I could see the fight in her eyes and knew this is a person who had connected emotionally and physically to their goals.

I love when I see accountability partners develop through friends and family. I will confidently tell you it’s one of the biggest guarantees clients will stick with the program and see results. Martha kept coming to TK-Fit classes after Summer BootCamps was over. Each week I consistently (especially on Saturday mornings at 6:30am)  saw that she was losing weight and gaining strength.  I loved hearing about all the races she was running along with her sisters. I could tell she was enjoying the success. I didn’t truly know how much meaning this new level of fitness was bringing her until I read this message one night in my email inbox.

“Hi Tricia,

With the TK-Fit holiday challenge officially over I just wanted to share my success story with you. I typically don’t say much but want to recognize the value and appreciation I have towards you and the TK-Family. I joined TK-FIT this summer for boot camp after seeing the joy, pain, friendships, and results it gave my sister. I jumped into boot camp just weeks after having my fourth child. I wasn’t sure what to expect but what I walked away with after that first class was a new outlook on the weight loss  journey I wanted to take. The last few years have been difficult ones to say the least with the passing of my niece and giving birth to two disabled children who require constant medical care. When I walked away from class that first day I made a decision that I wasn’t going to feel bad for myself, but rather do something that built me back up.

     Today I weighed in as it’s been my official 6 month mark of my weight loss journey. I am 50 pounds lighter, mentally and physically stronger, and more motivated to continue to excel . I ran six 5ks and won the TK-Fit holiday challenge and these are things I NEVER could have imagined doing 6 months ago! I can’t thank you and all the ladies of the TK-Fit family for getting me to where I am today. The friendships I’ve gained feel more like family and I look forward to being with my TK-family every week.

Thank you for kicking my butt! 

-Martha”

Martha – I’m so happy to have you in class and to share your story and more about you with others. I hope it motivates others to know they can feel great and succeed just like you have.

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What town do you live in and why have you chosen the Berkshires as the place to currently live?   

I live in Lee and I was born and raised here and now am raising my family here as well! I love everything the Berkshires has to offer and is where our family and support system is:)

 

What would be one word to describe yourself?

I would describe myself as determined!

 

When did you join Tricia’s fitness classes? 

Summer boot camp of 2014

 

How did you hear about the class? 

My sister Chrissie Lucy attends class!

 

If you were telling a friend about class what would you say to convince them to come? 

I would tell them that they won’t walk away from class disappointed. That they would get a good solid workout in as well as walking away with a positive uplifting experience bc everyone is so supporting no matter if your just starting or have been coming for months!

 

What exercise during classes have you found most challenging?

Mountain climbers!

 

What would you say is your biggest athletic accomplishment to date?   

Running 6 5ks this past summer/fall after having my fourth child! I’ve always have been an athlete and played basketball in college but the challenge of finishing the 5ks without walking has been the best feeling by far!

 

What is your next fitness goal?

To run a 10k

 

Tell us advice about fitness that has really impacted you. 

That drinking water is HUGE! But overall the SWEEP (TK-Fit designed program incorporating Sleep, Water, Exercise, Food Journaling and limiting alcohol into daily routine) program really impacts how you feel and challenges you in so many ways to do better overall! Also to never give up because weight loss is a slow process but to stick with it and find someone to hold you accountable!

 

If you wrote an autobiography what would be the title?

Organized Chaos

 

What’s something about you that might surprise others to know about you?  

I’m a mom of four kids ages 4,3,2,and 9 months! I look like I’m 16 and people typically don’t believe me :)

 

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Fitness Rockstar Amber “High Knees” Durken

 It made me teary to read Amber’s introduction to her interview. To hear the kind of role model she is for her young daughter goes way beyond losing pounds or inches. TK-Fit is all about feeling great about yourself and living a healthy life. The number one excuse I hear from people who want to see changes in their health is that they can’t find time to exercise. Amber is a mom of twins and a nurse who works  12 hour night shifts and she is making it happen. She is making time for Summer BootCamp and TK-Fit classes. As a result she if feeling better than ever.

The first day of BootCamp is such a thrill for me because I get a chance to work with new people who have signed up and there is a lot of anxious feelings about what challenges the class will bring. About mid-way through the program I can tell who mentally has committed themselves to the program. I can see who is going to see this through to the end and feel the results of their hard work. Amber was one of those people. She was just so enthusiastic about every workout no matter how difficult. One of her best qualities in class is her ability to laugh and say “I’ll give it a try”. Look where that attitude has gotten her! It was a pleasure to see her get started in Summer Bootcamp, stay and challenge herself in class week after week and an absolute blast to see her “bring it” every week in Winter BootCamp ( you should see this girl do the high knees in Cardio Blast – wow!) . That’s why I’m thrilled she’s our next Rockstar. Please read on! 

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Amber in 2009 and then in 2014 after Winter BootCamp

 

I still cannot believe I have been chosen to be a TK Fit Rock Star. I see myself as just another busy mom who works the night shift as a nurse and is trying to stay healthy and fit. When I told my kids that I was selected as a TK Fit Rock Star my daughter said, “Mom, there is no one who deserves it more. You have worked so hard.” The fact that my 11 year old has been able to see how hard I have worked really put my fitness journey into perspective. So yes I guess I am a Rock Star, at least to them and that means the world to me.

My fitness journey has not been easy as I have never been the strongest or the fastest athlete. A big turning point was when I was asked to be in my brother-in-law’s wedding about five years ago.  I decided I needed to try to get into better shape and become healthier. I lost about 20 pounds and was then able to maintain that weight for a while. Two years ago I had a set back when I became ill. This resulted in a surgery and I was unable to do any fitness activity for about four months. After that my weight began to creep back up and I signed up for the TK Fit 8 week summer boot camp with a few of my friends. I not only took off the extra weight I had gained but I have never felt as strong and confident about my fitness and athletic abilities in my life as I currently do today.

I work three 12-hour night shifts a week and it can be a challenge to find time to participate in the classes with my schedule. When I am able to go, I put in 100% and I leave feeling like I really did something great for myself.

Tricia and the whole TK Fit family are so encouraging and motivating that you find yourself pushing yourself to accomplish things you never imagined you could do. Little did I know that joining one 8-week boot camp would be life-changing experience for me. I am now proud to be a part of the TK Fit family and honored to be nominated as a TK Fit Rock Star.

What town do you live in and why have you chosen the Berkshires as the place to currently live?

We moved to Lee almost 10 years ago for my husband’s job. It was the difficult move for us since our kids were only about 15 months old and we’d be an hour away from our family. Lee has been a wonderful place to raise a family.
What would be one word to describe yourself?
Determined
When did you join Tricia’s fitness classes?

I joined TK Fit last summer for the 8-week summer boot camp. It was one of the hardest and most challenging things I have ever pushed myself to do.  I still remember how much every muscle in my body was aching as I was driving home from class. I remember thinking, “what have I gotten myself into”? Now I cannot even imagine not being at class.

How did you hear about the class?
I heard about Tricia’s class from my good friend Kate Heath. She had participated in Tricia’s indoor classes and wanted to do the summer boot camp. She persuaded myself and two other friends to sign up for the summer boot camp. The rest is history.
If you were telling a friend about class what would you say to convince them to come?
I would tell my friends that these are the most challenging and enjoyable classes you will ever do. I have never enjoyed a group setting while working out until I started at TK Fit. Tricia is motivating and supportive. She pushes you to do things that you would never even think you could do. She cares about her clients and will do what ever it takes to help them obtain their fitness goals.

 

What exercise during classes have you found most challenging? 
There are two exercises that are still the most challenging for me: push-ups and running hills. Even though I find them a challenge I continue to work at them and improve.
What would you say is your biggest athletic accomplishment to date?
Some days I feel making it through Tricia’s class is my biggest athletic accomplishment!! My two biggest accomplishments are holding a four-minute plank. I also struggle with running and have been continuing to improve my 5k pace in races but have had the endurance to start running longer distances.
What is your next fitness goal? 
My next fitness goal is to participate in the Josh Billings. I am also working towards running ½ marathon.
Tell us advice about fitness that has really impacted you.
Like most other things in life, fitness and being healthy requires hard work and dedication. These are things you must work at daily. When you put the effort in you will see the results. Also, I want to be a good example for my children by showing them that if you put in the effort you can accomplish anything. I want them to see that health and exercise are important things to incorporate into your life.
If you wrote an autobiography what would be the title? 
A day in my crazy, sleepless life!!
What’s something about you that might surprise others to know about you? 

I enjoy helping others, not just at my job but also at home. Many times I feel guilty about making time to do things to help myself. This included taking time to exercise. Recently I made adjustments in my schedule to include exercise in my life. This included get up “early” to participate in Tricia’s Saturday morning classes or going to class after working.  I know that by pushing myself to do these things helps me both physically and mentally.  These changes have made me a better and healthier person which allows me feel less guilty about taking a little time to “help” myself now too.

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Fitness Rockstar: Leanna Wedding-Arms Richel-Pegorari!

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Congratulations to Leanna who just got married this past Saturday!! Looking and feeling your best on your wedding day is something any bride would want, but it takes sacrifice. Leanna was already living a healthy lifestyle  before getting engaged but dug a bit deeper in anticipation of the wedding day. TK-Fit became part of that commitment when friend and co-worker Carol Way said she should try it. I don’t think she was expecting the fun and new friends she would make in classes along the way. Now Leanna is a permanent fixture in class and she’s beaming with positive energy for everyone. She claimed to us all that her goal was “Wedding Arms” for her day.  Leanna took full advantage of Winter BootCamp by  participating in the nutrition portion of the program and giving it her all in the 2x weekly classes.  Her hard work paid off and Leanna saw results.  She took home the cash prize for highest percentage of weight lost and felt stronger than ever.  I loved hearing Leanna say how confident and great she felt in her wedding gown on one of the best days of her life. Leanna thank you for being such a big part of TK-Fit and for being the next Rockstar! ( Leanna was also one of the brides honored in bridal bootcamp:  http://bit.ly/bridalbootcamp   )  Check out our interview below:

 

What town do you live in and why have you chosen the Berkshires as the place to currently live?

I live in Lee, but am moving to Pittsfield in a few weeks.  My fiance was born and raised in Housatonic so I moved up here two years ago after leaving my job in the Bronx to teach here in the Berkshires.  My grandma grew up in Pittsfield, and her brother still lives in Richmond so I have roots here.

What would be one word to describe yourself.  

Focused

When did you join Tricia’s fitness classes?

Spring of 2013

How did you hear about the class?
Who else but Carol Way!?
If you were telling a friend about class what would you say to convince them to come?
It is an amazing group of women (and sometimes men) that support you through fitness challenges but also personal goals and milestones.  The classes are not only my sanity but also a safe space to let out frustrations and celebrations to a group of individuals who care about you and have become true friends. You’ll also get a killer body too!

What exercise during classes have you found most challenging?

Mountain climbers. Curse them.

What would you say is your biggest athletic accomplishment to date?

Running in the Steel Rail Half Marathon in under 2 hours.

What is your next fitness goal?

Showing off my wedding arms on Saturday :)  (or possibly another half in the near future)

Tell us advice about fitness that has really impacted you.

I always enjoyed running with my dog and attending classes at NYSC when I lived in NY but it was just something I felt I had to check off my list of things to do a few times a week.  Now, I get cranky when I go days without working out and am addicted to it. Friends and family will tell you It’s not pretty if I am unable to fit it in my day.  Attending TK-FIT is a routine that I enjoy and look forward to.  Even on lethargic days, I always leave happy and refreshed. I am in the best shape and stronger than I’ve ever been (even in high school running track and playing soccer).

If you wrote an autobiography what would be the title?

Bodies by TK-FIT (no seriously… probably “the girl that doesn’t know how to stop.”)

What’s something about you that might surprise others to know about you? 

I used to hate mornings and loved to sleep in.  Now my internal alarm clock wakes me up no later than 7:30am.  Darn you Carol Way.

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Fitness Rockstar – Susan “1/2″ Tiegan

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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With certain people you can recall the very first time you met them. Susan is one of those people to me. I met her at Summer BootCamp and I tell you what, she looked scared. I like that I can recall that because it allows me to reflect on her progress!!  That awesome progress happened within 6 weeks and it was amazing to witness. I also can remember when I saw that determination in her eye and I knew something had clicked. It was running up the crest of the hill during the morning BootCamp and there was no way she was giving up. I saw it and I was so proud of her. She was reconnecting with that inner athlete and every week she was beginning to trust in the strength of her body again.

Susan continued classes through the fall and winter. She was a force in this year’s Winter BootCamp. I can’t believe it’s been only a year having her in class. It feels like she has been working out with me for years. I can’t imagine it without her so I’ll keep pushing her and making new challenges for her, because with someone as determined as her – that’s how you keep her coming back for more!! Thanks for inspiring us Susan and for being the next TK-Fit Rockstar!

 

Here’s Susan’s interview:

 

 

What town do you live in and why have you chosen the Berkshires as the place to currently live?

Great Barrington. We’ve only been in the Berkshires for two years and we’ve definitely found “home”. We moved our family (myself, Dan and two boys – Quincy and Sam) here from central Montana where we had been living for close to 20 years. I grew up in Elmira, New York and my husband, Dan, is from Enfield, CT. It was getting more and more difficult (and expensive) to fly back east to visit family, so much so that we were only seeing our parents once a year. I wanted my kids to know their grandparents (and great-grandfather) so I started looking for teaching jobs in MA and VT. Long story short, I didn’t like the school I was hired at, worked at Berkshire South until a special education position, serendipitously, opened up at Muddy Brook mid-year. I love my job and wouldn’t want to be anywhere else.

What would be one word to describe yourself. 

Determined

When did you join Tricia’s fitness classes?

Last summer, 2013. I joined the early morning summer boot camp and I think my sneakers are still wet from the early-morning dew.

How did you hear about the class?
Former Rockstar, Carol Way. I think school was officially out for the summer but I was in the classroom and happened to notice an email forwarded to me by Carol. It was about this woman in Lenox who ran a boot camp at the high school… Carol thought I might be interested. Before I could change my mind, I signed up, for the early morning class (ugh) and the rest is history.

If you were telling a friend about class what would you say to convince them to come?

I. Ran. A. Half. Marathon.  I was the one who ran and finished it but Tricia got me to the starting line, prepared.  I’ll say it again…  ran a half marathon. Even if you’re not looking to do that, these classes will develop and strengthen muscles you never knew you had. You’ll cry at times and curse Tricia’s name when trying to sit down and stand back up. You’ll hate going to the next class because doing squats, overhead presses, or crunches will KILL. You’ll be worried about what Tricia is going to make you do with that metal sled looking thing with weights on top and straps for pulling.  But as a result, you will be able to do things you never thought you could. You’ll feel better. You’ll get stronger. You will accomplish so much.  I. Ran. A. Half. Marathon. This isn’t bragging…it’s the shock I still feel when I look at the medal or think about pushing myself through the last couple miles.

 

What exercise during classes have you found most challenging? 

Boot camp. Period.  Indoor, outdoor, summer, winter, community center, high school…wherever our fearless leader decides to take us.

Some perspective on the challenging aspects of all of Tricia’s classes – I hated the hills during summer boot camp, but now I can solidly run eight miles before I start running of of steam.  I hated the burpees where we had to go all the way down to the ground and jump back up, but now I can attack hills on my bike better than I EVER have. I hated, HATED, mountain climbers with the rags, but now I’ve run a half marathon. I still have a long way to go physically but I’m stronger than I’ve ever been and I don’t hate the hills or burpees or mountain climbers anymore. I don’t really like them and I will growl while doing them but I don’t HATE them.

What would you say is your biggest athletic accomplishment to date?

Completing the Steel Rail Half Marathon in May.

What is your next fitness goal? 

Riding the bike portion of the Josh Billings Runaground with rockstar teammates Nicole Feldman and Amber Durken.

Tell us advice about fitness that has really impacted you.

Working on the large muscle groups, being as consistent as you can with workouts, and pushing yourself even when you don’t want to (it’s only your brain telling you that you can’t do it- your muscles/body can do it). Clearly, the things Tricia has taught me and guided me through have had such an impact that I was able to run 13 (THIRTEEN) miles! Really, if you knew me a year ago, I would have never muttered the words “I’m going to run a half marathon.”

If you wrote an autobiography what would be the title? 

If it was ready to be published today… “Almost There”

What’s something about you that might surprise others to know about you? 

While in Montana, I lived in a town of 10, branded calves, rounded up cows while riding a horse, baled hay (big round bales) with a tractor and baler, and fixed fence.

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