We want to thank all of you who attended for coming to our recent Holiday Party! We had a great turnout and it was really great to see everyone outside of the gym. There are no words to express how much we appreciate each of you who continue to help us build Train for Life into an amazing community. We've watched this place grow and many of you change for the better. We also want to thank those of you who participated in our recent survey and answered our questions on how we did in 2012! We read through all of your responses and wanted to let you know what to expect in 2013 as well as give you some better understanding of some of the how's and why's of what we do at Train for Life. This is a lot to read through so I will be posting on our blog page as well so you can reference it in the future as well. 1. What did you LIKE in 2012? - We had a great turnout for the Charity Boot Camps that we held in 2012 and plan to bring you many more. With your help, we were able to support some great causes including the American Lung Association, Raise of Hope and Behcets and Arthritis. We plan to continue bringing you more of these throughout 2013 and if you have any suggestions on organizations that are close you, please let us know.
- Tough Mudder, Rugged Maniac, Holyoke St Patrick's Day Road Race and More… We love getting you guys moving outside of the gym. We brought many of you to tackle your first 5K or mud run this past year and plan to continue on with these in 2013. We have the St. Patrick's Day Road Race and Tough Mudder coming up very soon. If you'd like to join us, we'd love to help you prepare and challenge yourself.
- Our Family style Atmosphere is one of the biggest things that separates us at Train for Life. You guys mean a lot to us and create the comfortable atmosphere that has allowed so many of you to achieve goals and meet a ton of positive people. They say, "You are the sum of those around you.." and we have a LOT of great people here. So thank you for being so positive and as we grow we intend to ensure this remains a big part of Train for Life.
- The Quality and Variety of Our Workouts at Train for Life is something we pride ourselves on. We want to remind you that we are constantly learning and educating ourselves on the most up to date information and techniques in the industry. We already have 3 certifications lined up for this year and plan to continue to build on what we in our workouts. As we learn new and better ways to teach you, you will get better! Form is something that is extremely important to us, we want all of you to know to perform an exercise and feel comfortable doing it. Specific exercises should not be causing you pain, burning in a specific muscle, sure; your heart pounding after doing 30 seconds on the ropes, sure! However, if your knee always bothers you while doing a Split Squat or Lunge, that's not an appropriate exercise for you. In 2013, we plan to continue to better our programming to help correct some of the issues you may/may not be experiencing. It's common for pain or an injury to occur in any workout regimen, but we can't let it go without notice. We need to know about it in order to help you or to refer you to someone in our network that can!
- Challenges and Testing are a great way to keep everyone motivated! Our most recent challenge saw the top 3 individuals lose a combined total of over 20 inches! We will continue to bring you more of these throughout the year so you will constantly be motivated. During the first 5-6 months of 2012, we were testing things like push ups and planks during recovery week as a means to help you gauge your progress. We plan to add more ways for us to track your progress and for you to see your improvements. We always want you strive for small goals, each workout, each week, each month as those small goals get you to your BIG goals!
2. What you did NOT LIKE in 2012? - More HELP and less cancelled classes is a big priority of ours in 2013. We plan to bring on at least one more person to help Jordan and I by summer, and most likely two by the end of the year. We want to be sure as we open our doors to an employee(s) we still provide you with the best possible program and experience. With that said, you may see interns come and go as we find the right fit for Train for Life. We want you to know that no matter who is here helping us, we believe in them and that they are just as capable as we are. We needed to be away in 2012 at times in order to better our education and build our experience here. While we were away this past weekend, Chris Watton and Jim Scripture did an amazing job filling in and keeping everyone moving on Saturday!
- Lack of showers and places to change - This is something we considered when we selected our location and while it is possible for us to add a 'locker room' and showers this is a large investment which we cannot justify without a large increase in price for something that not that a very small percentage has asked for. However, we will be finishing the men's bathroom with a bench and clean area to change. We will also be adding one in the women's room to make changing easier for everyone!
- Cleanliness of mats, foam rollers, etc. - We are constantly cleaning at Train for Life so after you leave we spend plenty of time daily keeping your equipment sanitized. We have also taken action to add equipment wipes and Purel hand sanitizers in both rooms. We ask that you aid in keeping items you use clean by whipping them down after each class.
- There has been some mention of large class sizes being a concern. We want to ensure you that this has been part of our vision all along and we understand that some of you who have been with us for a long time can remember when 10 people was a lot. We hope that you will continue to grow with us and know that the classes will be capped at 30 people in our Boot Camps and 10 people in our Small Group sessions and that we have adequate room and equipment for that many. We are working with a software company called MindBody to set up an online system where you can check in for each class so that we know how many people will be expected per class and if and when we need to add classes. If you have issues with learning exercises, questions about your own training or nutrition, please speak with us. We have no idea if you don't talk to us directly. We continue to put thought into our programming to ensure plenty of room for exercises and will be adding more equipment when needed to keep the quality top notch!
- More variety of classes - Our program centers around our Boot Camp and Small Group sessions. Many of you have mentioned a variety of classes such as an abs only classes, kettle bells, yoga, etc. We are constantly working to provide you with as much variety in our program while sticking to our roots of quality programming based on the scientific backing of metabolic strength training, full body strength training and more. With that in mind, we will be adding a new time for our Strongman classes, Tuesday nights at 7:15 pm and we will be looking for a yoga instructor in the near future. You won't see an abs only class as some of you mentioned for the sole reason that it does not align with our philosophies. We want to remind you that abs are MADE IN THE KITCHEN, NOT IN THE GYM! We strongly believe in our principles of core stability training and incorporate a ton of core work into our boot camp workouts. Anything that we will bring to you in the future we will strongly stand behind in the science that backs it! It is our mission to always provide you with the best the fitness and strength and conditioning industry has to offer.
- Parking - The parking lot tends to get very full requiring you to park at the far ends of the building. We want to remind the walk is good for you and you are coming to the gym! On a serious note, our landlord plans to add additional lighting on the building and if you feel unsafe walking in the dark, we would be glad to walk with you.
3. What's coming in 2013!? - Individual Goal Setting, Challenges, and Check Ins - We will continue to bring you more and more ways to keep you on task and getting the results you are working so hard for. In February, you will see the return of another 7 Week Challenge. We will be scheduling workshops on topics including Chi Running, Nutrition and Food Prep, and Mindset for Success. We will be working be checking in with to see that you've set some great goals for yourself for 2013, so put your thinking caps on!
- We promise to continue working on building Train for Life in the place that you can call the BEST PART OF YOUR DAY! We are constantly working to better ourselves and Train for Life and we always look for suggestions so going forward if your questions or concerns weren't answered here, TALK TO US! We don't bite. Talk to us about ways to better the environment and community here as well as how you can conquer each and every goal you have!