In March of 2016, one of my good friends called me out on Facebook to join her in the Farrell’s eXtreme Bodyshaping 10-week challenge. Admittedly, it was a bit embarrassing. Since college, my weight has been a yo-yo. I would get healthy for a short time, but always revert back to my normal routine. I knew I was in the worst shape of my life. I worked a lot, ate poorly, exercised minimally, and was perpetually tired. I never wanted to go out with friends or family because I was ashamed of the way I looked. Nothing was comfortable. Nothing was fun. I wanted to stay at home, in my sweatpants.
I was terrified and embarrassed to even think about exercising in front of a lot of people! And it was hard! The kickboxing and strength training workouts were hard and being in front of other people was hard. Thankfully, I had one of my best friends right there with me and the coaches and instructors at Farrell’s make you feel comfortable. Co-owners, Pam and Teresa, knew my name- they knew everyone’s name! They made me feel like I was important. It took probably five weeks or so, but I started to feel more comfortable. I felt comfortable working out, comfortable with my classmates, comfortable being me. By the end of the Farrell’s 10-week program I was hooked! I was stronger, sleeping better, had more energy, and was seeing physical changes as well. I was losing weight, but more importantly, I was getting stronger, seeing muscle in places I didn’t even know existed, especially in my 40’s! I was stronger physically, mentally, and emotionally. And I was making healthier food choices, for my family and myself. When I told my husband that I wanted to become a Farrell’s member, his response was “I don’t get it, but ok”. About a month or two after I joined, he said to me “ok, I get it”. He saw the changes in me. I looked forward to getting up at 4AM every day and getting to the gym. It was such an outlet! I enjoyed the workouts and loved the people!
One of my favorite things about Farrell’s Bloomington is that Pam and Teresa have created a family, the Farrell’s family. People get together outside of the gym to do things together as a group like runs, hikes, and camping. It is not just about the workout. It is about each person. Each of us has our own level 10, and it can vary from day to day and the staff and our classmates help get us there. Another one of my favorite things about Farrell’s is that the instructors are not these perfectly toned models (well, some of them are ;)). They are people who have done the program, love what it stands for, and help others reach whatever goals they may have.
One of my most memorable moments was doing the Farrell’s kids camp with my niece. She absolutely loved it and she was exhausted every single day! Pam and Teresa were so great with the kids!
A memorable moment for me was my one-mile run at the 10-week testing. I shaved over three minutes off of my initial mile and was under 10 minutes for the first time ever.
I encourage anyone to try Farrell’s. It is more than just a gym. It really is a family. While individual goals are different, everyone is there to improve. And everyone is there to help you improve. Sometimes we get focused on our perfect outcome. We have to remember where we started, step back and look at the progress we have made, and stay focused. We need to use the energy and support of the folks at Farrell’s to help keep us accountable and help us with areas that we may need to make small changes in to help us reach our goals.
Penny H. is a FIT Member
at our Bloomington, IN Farrell’s eXtreme Bodyshaping location.