Before I started at Dragonfly Fitness, I was out of shape, not fitting in my clothes, working too much, eating horribly, feeling just down right BLAH. I belonged to a gym and would run/walk the dog but never stuck to anything. I found an excuse as to why I wasn’t getting there and making the changes I needed to become fit and healthy. It’s about finding the right place…and DFT was it for me. They are a supportive community of fabulous fit ladies, challenging workouts, and I place I miss when I don’t get a chance to make it to all my weekly classes. If someone told me I would miss working out a year ago, I would have rolled my eyes, but I do. I have been a member for almost a year. I started with a couple times a week but was blowing through my sessions so now I am unlimited and go as much as possible. A year later I am 25lbs lighter, a whole LOT stronger and healthier and a lot happier. DFT is not just a gym, it is packed full of support and great ideas around nutrition. I can’t say enough awesome things about Renah, the community of ladies that support me and push me and the great trainers that motivate me every workout. Every workout flies by, has a different spin, and still incorporates new moves that keep me from getting bored. I seriously could go on and on about the place, It really changed my life, the way I think about myself and has made me stronger physically and mentally. And in between all those tough sets and hard workouts, we all still laugh.
I’ve always been active, walking or running or participating in a fitness class or gym. I’ve tried several facilities in St. Louis over the years, but found nothing that was awesome, nothing to keep my interest. I hadn’t yet found THE place that was a perfect FIT to get what works for me. I like fun workouts that don’t get boring, workouts that challenge me and allow me to gain strength and be more fit, workouts that are led by trainer-instructor who knows his/her stuff – workouts that keep me coming back. A friend heard about Dragonfly in spring 2013, where we attended strength & conditioning sessions held outside (and then on to the the studio in the fall). SCORE! Fun and challenging sessions, small class size, a knowledgeable trainer who mixes things up. FUN! I found The Place! I found my fitness at Dragonfly, I found a knowledgeable and enthusiastic trainer in Renah!
Nutrition is an important complement to exercise, of course – but it wasn’t something I thought about as much as fitness and staying active. I had the good fortune of having high metabolism – and all through my twenties and thirties, I got away with eating junk and then working out to make up for bad food – a terrible approach but my weight stayed pretty even. But recently I’ve been feeling terrible, stomach issues and low energy. Food diaries and experimentation didn’t identify a cause as to why I’ve been feeling so poorly. Nothing was working – what I needed was a nutrition make-over! Dragonfly was offering something that sounded interesting, a 3-month program called Living Lean. Living Lean teaches nutritional knowledge and habit-building, healthy habits that are introduced gradually so it’s not overwhelming – so the habits “stick”. No fads, no tricks, no gimmicky food combinations or exclusions. Solid healthy habits like meal planning, eating five to six portion-controlled meals each day, consuming lean protein and colorful vegetables at every meal, drinking plenty of water, and eating SMART carbs and timing that carb intake to coincide with exercise. There’s even a cookbook!
The Living Lean program at Dragonfly healed my nutritional ills and guided me through the development of positive habits for healthy living. I feel healthier than I have for years, I feel stronger and leaner, and I’ve lost pounds, shaved off inches and toned my muscles. It’s not a diet, it’s a lifestyle.
I made the decision to switch to DFT at the beginning of the year from another gym that offered group training because I had become uninspired with the workouts and found myself skipping classes. I knew I had to make a change in order to keep up with my commitment to fitness and goal of living a healthier lifestyle. Last fall, I saw an ad on Facebook for DFT that intrigued me so I tried out a few of the classes. After taking those classes, I knew that when my membership was up at the end of the year with my gym at the time, I was going to make the change. I was drawn to Dragonfly because of the variety of classes offered and it’s a community of positive energy that I wanted to be a part of. I have no regrets about making the change and haven’t been bored yet with the classes after 8 months!
The trainers at DFT are phenomenal, knowledgeable, energetic, and are always to be in a great mood (which is contagious)! I’m a 6amer’ and it can be a bit challenging to pep up that early in the morning, but the trainers always show up with a smile on their faces ready to get me motivated to work out! The trainers listen to what your goals are and help you achieve them along with work with you where you are at with your fitness level. One day after class, I asked Missy how I could figure out what my 1 Rep max was on my deadlifts. Missy sent me an email with instructions on how I could work to get to my 1 rep max later that day. The next lift class that I went to, Renah was the trainer that day, she brought up the conversation that I had with Missy and worked with me that day to get to my 1 rep max on my deadlift. Truth be told, that Lift class I wasn’t feeling up to doing my 1 rep max and wasn’t going to bring it up even though that is something I wanted to do, but because Renah approached me about it, I did it that day and let me tell you I was ecstatic the rest of the day because of my achievement! It really showed me that the trainers talk to each other about individual goals that one might have for their workout and really listened to what I wanted out of my workout.
The other thing that I appreciate about DFT is the skills classes that they offer from time to time. I personally have gone to the kettlebell swing and the rowing skills classes so that I could improve on these two exercises. The skills classes break down the exercise step by step which really helped me to focus on my form and find where my areas of improvement were so that I could go up in weight on my kettlebell swing along with row more efficiently.
I’ve also taken advantage of the Living Lean Program that was offered at the beginning of the year at DFT to help with the nutrition side of trying to live a healthy lifestyle. My last gym really pushed the Paleo diet which worked for a while, but I needed to learn how to not be on a diet and really learn about making healthier choices that would stick with me for the rest of my life. The program builds on adding in new habits every couple of weeks so that it’s easier to maintain and not so overwhelming. The Living Lean Program helped me to incorporate healthy habits that I can stick with. One of the biggest things I learned outside of the habits was that if I have a meal or two in a row that aren’t so healthy not to say to myself ‘I messed up, so I’ll just start fresh on Monday or next week’, but to move on, not beat myself up and start fresh with the next meal.
I’m still a work in progress, but I know with the support and help of DFT, I will get to where I want to be with my fitness and healthy living goals. I absolutely love DFT, it’s a great community of strong women that are inspiring and make working out fun!
DFT has been a game changer for me. Before I became a member two years ago I was literally going to work, coming home, sitting on my couch in front of the TV and then going to bed. I had been active in the past, but really never stuck with it. I did the YoYo diets where I would lose a bunch of weight quickly and then put it back on, plus some extra. DFT has helped me realize that slow and steady wins the race and each day I do the best I can, and if one day I have a bad day I just get right back at it the next day. I have not only gained strength and lost weight, I have become a more confident person and my overall attitude about life in general is much more positive.
I would recommend DFT to anyone and everyone. Plus, Deb has great jokes! 🙂
In 2013, an ad popped up in my Facebook news feed promoting a four week, small-group, all-women training session outdoors in a park near my house. I had friends who participated in the larger, co-ed “boot camps” in local parks, but that just wasn’t my thing (I am very self-conscious when I work out, so I never liked working out around men, and didn’t feel like I was getting any individualized support or guidance in those larger groups). I didn’t know a thing about Renah Jones or Dragonfly Fitness, but I was looking for something to re-energize my workouts and decided to take a chance. It was only a four-week commitment, after all, and I’d had success with this type of training at another fitness center (which closed years ago) in the past. After the first four weeks, I signed on for another four weeks, and then another, and before I knew it, summer was nearly over. Thankfully, Renah announced she would be opening an indoor location and asked who would be interested in continuing their training program in the fall and winter. Without hesitation, I said YES!!!! After four months, I was already seeing improvements in my strength, and I wanted to continue that success.Here I am a year later. I’ve shed inches and pounds, and I am definitely stronger than I was a year ago! Renah exposed me to workouts I never imagined I was capable of completing. She pushes me to do my best, try my hardest, and helps me believe I can, instead of telling myself I can’t. In addition, the other women in the strength and conditioning, TRX and boxing classes I’ve attended have been a great support network. We encourage each other to try heavier weights, hold planks just a bit longer and show up for those early morning sessions!I also appreciate Renah’s focus on nutrition as a key component of building a healthy body. When Renah decided to offer the 12-week Living Lean nutrition program, I’ll admit, I was skeptical … of my ability to stick with a new “eating program” for three whole months! I’ve shed more inches and pounds, and I’m eating healthier and feeling more energetic than I have in a long time. Renah constantly reminded our group that we weren’t on a diet – we were making healthy choices for a healthy life. She also reminded me that eating healthy actually can – and does – taste good. Just like my workouts, I’ve introduced new foods into my life that I never imagined I would try! As one friend told me, “Erica, I’ve never seen you more excited about a workout program. Keep up the good work!” And I intend to! I look forward to continuing to work with Renah to become even stronger and healthier in the years to come!
Being a member of Dragonfly Fitness has been an outstanding experience for me. The trainers are motivating and encouraging, no two workouts are the exact same and all are very challenging. The trainers sincerely want each person to reach their maximum potential with each and every rep. The community feel that Dragonfly provides also keeps me coming back.
Dragonfly has given me the confidence to switch up my workout routine and use heavier weights, along with more functional exercises. I’m stronger and more fit than I’ve ever been.
I discovered Dragonfly Fitness & Training a little less than a year ago through my friend Michele. She would post her workouts on Facebook, stating that she had amazing sessions time and time again with TRX, boxing, kettlebells, free weights, and more! Being an athlete in my previous years, I couldn’t help but be intrigued. After picking Michele’s brain on the place, I learned that it was a gym geared strictly towards women’s health and fitness needs and, since I’ve always had anxieties when going to co-ed facilities, this further peaked my interest. I reflected on all the times I’d dreaded working out in front of all of the “muscle head” men at the public gyms and the inadequacies that went along with it. Finally, in late November of 2015, I decided it was time to give Dragonfly a try so I came in for a free session alongside Michele. Renah, the owner, was the instructor and she was nothing short of outstanding while conducting the most exhilarating and energizing workout. Ever since that day, I’ve been hooked! There are so many benefits to being a member of DFT. For starters, it’s cool to be surrounded by women who can relate to and support you while working towards similar health goals, whatever they may be. There’s a camaraderie that exists here that you don’t find in traditional settings. Secondly, the trainers take the workouts to a whole new level with their knowledge and guidance throughout each class. It feels as though you’re getting the quality and results of a one-on-one personal training session even though you’re with a group. And thirdly, the variety of classes offered keeps me interested and motivated enough to maintain a regular workout schedule. If you decide to join up or even just drop in and check it out, you won’t be disappointed!”
I find myself talking about Dragonfly A LOT! To friends, family, co-workers. Really anyone who will listen. There are so many amazing things that I love about walking through the DFT doors throughout my week. Whether it’s been a fantastic day and I’m feeling wonderful or a gloomy, disaster of a day and I’m super down, I always leave feeling strong and better every time! Who wouldn’t? I get to work out at a gym in my awesome neighborhood with women who work or live down the street! And the best part? I just have to show up ready to work! The trainers plan new workouts that both challenge you and make you want to say “I can’t believe I just did that”. A year ago if you would have told me that I would be deadlifting and pushing prowlers and that the words “I love kettlebell swings” would come out of my mouth, I would have fallen over. But thanks to the wonderful support and inspiration I have found at Dragonfly, that’s just a typical everyday thing now!
The words “Better Every Day” are painted in the gym. I really do feel like a better me every time I go and put the work in with my DFT family!