What did your fitness journey look like before coming to Dragonfly?
I was a dancer for most of my life (ages 3-23). I even got a degree in it from Southeast Missouri State. So at that time in my life, I was fairly physically fit (I wasn’t eating great, but who does when you’re in your early 20s?), but after college, I stopped dancing for a number of reasons. And because I was no longer in dance class every day (because dance is exercise… who knew?) I gained a bunch of weight and lost a bunch of self esteem. Then for years I did the thing everyone does of trying all the fad diets, and I halfheartedly tried to find exercise that would work for me. I joined gyms and never went, all the while being obsessed with trying to lose weight. I felt like a failure because I couldn’t find anything I could stick to. Fast forward to around a year ago, when I finally started to feel comfortable in my own body and became less obsessed with weight loss and started loving myself where I was at. I still needed to find an exercise routine that would work for me though. I realized that I needed something that I had to really commit to, like another human being expecting me to be at a certain place at a certain time, so I started looking for physical trainers. That search lead me to find Dragonfly, and I found that the fact that we have to sign up for classes and pay a fee if we don’t show up, motivated me to keep going after I joined. And the group environment really felt like dance class in the way that we’re all in this together. And now, the fact that I now have made friends in class, and all the trainers are really great and I feel amazing just keeps me motivated to continue. I feel really privileged to be able to afford this gym and I can’t imagine ever stopping.
What’s your favorite class to take?
This is a hard one, because I think they’re all really complimentary of each other. Cardiostrong is great because it’s so different every time and the fast-paced nature of it makes it go by very quickly. I really like Totally TRX because it was completely new to me when I started and it’s fun! It just reminds me of playing on a jungle gym at recess. And I love Lift because it makes me feel like a bad-ass lifting weights I never thought I could! I am really enjoying the new style of progression because it’s making it easier to keep track of my accomplishments. My favorite thing at Dragonfly has been all the special occasion themed classes, like Halloween and Christmas. It’s slightly chaotic but really fun.
Have you noticed any unexpected effects from your training?
I didn’t expect it to affect my mental health the way it has. Exercise has been a way to clear out the anxiety and depression of every day life for me. It’s also giving me loads more confidence and empowerment. I find myself being stronger emotionally in addition to being physically stronger. I assert myself more, I stand up for myself more. And it’s made me love my body so so so much more because I’m proud of all the stuff I can do with it!
What personal record or accomplishment are you most proud of?
I’m proud of being able to hold a plank for 60 seconds. And in the last Lift session, I pushed a really heavy prowler (plus Missy) down the turf at a fairly good pace. (I don’t remember exactly how much weight it was) And after the last big snowstorm, I lasted way longer than my partner shoveling snow!
Bonus – How do you think your Dragonfly coaches would describe you?
Probably really snarky, but encouraging of others, because that helps me too!