Congratulations, Francine, on being March’s Member Spotlight! Well done!!
It will change you.
My key ring is filled with key tags. Aside from supermarket & store memberships, I have a sizable collection of gym membership tags. You see, I have a long history of gym membership but not necessarily gym patronage. I had aspirations of being one of those fit girls that I see everywhere but not necessarily the discipline or desire to put in the work to get there. So as the aspiration strikes, i get a new membership and another one and another one.
I joined JCF in one of these bursts of aspiration about 3 years ago. It had all the markings of a bad impulse buy. Random conversation with a friend on Saturday. Text on a Sunday. Trial class on Monday. Not knowing much more about it other than that same friend liked it. We signed up for a 6-week challenge. That was the start.
This is a boot camp style workout. Workouts are outlined and defined with tough but caring coaches. They toggle between overall conditioning/HIIT and weightlifting. All workouts have regression adjusted for beginners and some progressions for those who are further along. There is a good mix of exercises and you will develop favorites and hates (ie Lucky 7s – HATE) What sets JCF apart from most other gyms and classes is the camaraderie that becomes the default
Aside from sessions, there’s guidance on nutrition and specific sessions devoted on proper form. There are frequent challenges too that are optional to participate but spark a sense of friendly competition. All done in an environment focused on lifting you up with a cheer and a high-five.
There have been many challenges since that first one I joined. The path has been hard and not without its moments of frustration. To date, I’ve lost over 20 lbs. I weigh now about the same as I did in my freshman year of college. More than the physical weight loss, I’ve shed a few bad assumptions. The most significant of which is defeating the “I could never’s”.
“I could never workout so much. I’d get so bored.” I average now about 4-6 workouts a week and take workouts on all my travels.
“I could never run a 5k. I don’t have that in me.” Yeah…not a problem.
“I could never wear a bikini” Ok, still working on this one but it’s going to happen this year.
I would tell anyone who is interested in JCF that this experience will challenge you and in the end, it can change you. I know that it helped me start to think that whatever I didn’t think was possible can actually be done. This has started to extend to the rest of my life. Empowerment is a good feeling and in the end, that is what I take away from the sessions every day.
There’s no magic. It’s still hard work. There are still days when I approach the gym, see the workout and wish I could turn back. I go back then to my big set of keytags. My key tags remind me of the many many steps that i’ve taken to get to this point. I have the best guides to take me through the next leg of this journey, I just have to keep showing up.