Helen Bibeau

I can hear my doctor now saying, “Helen, you have diabetes.”

That is the sentence that woke me up from the 3 year coma that I had put myself in by working crazy hours, not eating right, and not exercising AT ALL !!!  This is not me.  What the heck am I doing?

I had a lot of questions but did not want to talk to anyone about them. I was embarrassed and ashamed that I had ballooned into such an unhealthy weight. I had no choice but to draw a line in the sand and do something about it.  But I knew it was not going to be easy. Then, a friend suggested a friend of hers, a trainer, Heather Baker.  She said that Heather was great and that she would help me get back on track.  I took the number but was chicken to call and also could not imagine any personal trainer out there looking forward to working with someone as out of shape and messed up as I was.

Well, I could not have been more wrong. When I did NOT contact Heather she contacted ME, which was amazing.  She talked to me for a bit and told me that she had been told about me and she was interested in helping me out on a journey back to getting healthy.  I agreed to meet with Heather at On The Rise Bakery on Pleasant St in Worcester, over coffee…. come on now…  no pastries… haha.. .  At that meeting Heather made me feel very comfortable and told me all about herself and about GH2 Training. “Go Hard Go Home” is her motto.  We made a schedule to meet a couple of days a week to start off, with me doing other things at home on my own.

I started my training January 26th 2010. It was hard but I really liked it, even though I did get my butt kicked! You can train and you can train your little heart out but if you do not take a closer look at your diet it will all be in vain.

I cannot say enough about GH2 and metabolic conditioning. It is great.  You work hard for 30 minutes and go home and get all the other things you need to get done in your life.  It is amazing.

After a year I had lost 65 pounds and gained so much stamina and felt so much better it was crazy.  Heather told me to jot down some goals that I would like to achieve. She said you should always have a goal. One of my goals was to run a 5k.  I chose the Celtic 5k, held on the day of the St. Patricks Day Parade. Get this –  Heather RAN IT WITH ME !!!  She coached me and kept me going the whole way.  I came in at 39 minutes and 32 seconds –  under 40 minutes which was good for me as I still have a lot of weight to lose. It was so cool.  I just don’t know what to say, just amazing.  I was so proud of myself.  I think I smiled all day long!  What a great day! A year ago I would not have been able to run to the end of my street.

I also started attending classes with GH2 a couple more times a week which I was afraid to do, work out with others – but Heather kept telling me I was ready and  I could do it.  Well I did, and have been going to classes ever since.  They are awesome and cheaper than private classes – so I thought omg what a great trainer! She is encouraging me to go to classes and she will lose money – what the heck – I know why though – because Heather was in it to help me to get healthy. She said it when I met with her and she meant it.  Its like she was saying move on GRASSHOPPER you can do it…… lol……  So I gave it a try and once again she was right.  I was fine and as a matter of a fact it made me work harder when there are others around, especially ones that may be better and faster. It made me work harder, give it that extra push, so it was very positive.

Heather, Carolyn, Helen, Dawn and Ross have all contributed through their actions and encouraging words that they have a strong belief in my potential which makes me feel obligated to step up each and every day so that I know I have given 110% even if I’m not always the fastest or the strongest, anything less just wouldn’t be acceptable.

Pam Houlihan

I started running back in 2008 when walking with 3 young children waiting for me at home just took way too long. I had never been a runner and started off doing the fast paced walking, running between phone poles, and eventually sprinting down hills.  I was excited that I had found an exercise that I convinced myself had little associated cost and I could do it whenever I wanted without having to go to a gym or facility. A short time later I had a number of races under my belt and completed three full marathons.

It didn’t take long before the “low cost” associated with running was actually becoming quite an expense, with new sneakers being purchased every three months, outdoor running gear for those cold winter months, and fees associated with races which at the marathon level can be in the hundreds. And of course it wasn’t long into the running that my body started to yell FOUL! Shin splints, bunyons, labral tears, blisters, and stress fractures, which brought on the real expenses with medical services such as doctor’s appointments, x-rays, MRI’s, cortisone injections, physical therapy treatments, a heavy dependence on Ibuprofen, and as a last ditch effort, chiropractor visits…Which brings me to the GH2 experience.

As you know the chiropractor is located right next door to GH2 and that proximity along with a good friend mentioning that she attended Ross & Heather’s classes piqued my interest enough to contact Heather and see if GH2 might be a good fit for me. I was eager to start my trial, feeling relatively fit but unsure how my hips would respond to the type of workout that was offered. Surprisingly squats, lunges, swings, rows, and jumps didn’t cause nearly the amount of pain I would experience after a 5 to 8 mile run. My dependence on Ibuprofen was becoming a thing of the past and my new addiction was trying to get into as many Met Con classes as possible. The varied workouts, fast paced atmosphere, the punctuality of the trainers and knowing that I was working to my fullest capacity is something that I began looking forward to every day. When I was running my weight was pretty stable but I wouldn’t say I was extremely toned. In fact, looking back at pictures I thought I looked pretty loose considering I was investing so much time into running, along with the elliptical and the stationary bike at home, and the occasional Jillian Michael’s DVD. Now that I have added the strength classes along with the Met-Con classes, I am still the same weight as when I was running, but I am more toned, stronger, and even more cardio fit than ever. Running is no longer my go to exercise but because I am staying so fit with the GH2 classes. When I do run, I run stronger, and I’m less sore afterwards. When I ride my stationary bike I go for the highest level of resistance because my legs are stronger and I can.

There are so many other positive things about GH2, the location, the cleanliness, the small class sizes, the trainers, the constant rotation of varied workouts, I am in my sixth month and have rarely experienced a repeat class if ever. I am so grateful that GH2 has become a part of my life. It’s still not easy but if it were than I wouldn’t be working as hard as I should.

A year has passed since I submitted my original testimonial – to date I have lost 14 pounds, whittled inches all over, dropped from a size 6 pant to a 2, reduced my body fat, increased my lean muscle mass and have gained strength, stamina, and confidence. I have benefited greatly from doing both Met Con, paired with 2-3 strength classes per week. I have participated in challenges that were both physically and mentally demanding but which forced me to really focus on diet and nutrition and the key role they play in health, fitness and well being. I have taken advantage of participating in their sprint sessions which I used to be fearful of because I had never focused on speed work as a runner but now I feel like their #1 sprint fan. All of these changes have allowed me to compete in numerous events over the past year, 5K’s, 10K’s, 30K’s, 1/2 marathons, endurance trail races, and looking forward to my second year competing in the Central Mass Fit Female Challenge in September 2013, and running my 6th 26.2 marathon in October 2013.

I am often asked who taught the class today and my answer is always, it doesn’t matter. The workouts are set for the day, the trainers are all awesome in their varied and diverse approaches, and at the end of the day it’s all what I as a participant bring to the table.

before & after photo testimonial for GH2 Fitness

Colleen H.

Sometimes all you need is to find your place. First picture is 2019. Second is today. Thank you to the GH2 community for being so supportive. Especially to Heather Baker who spent years encouraging me to take my first step through these doors. 100 pounds gone and so much gained. ❤️💪 Go Hard. Go Home.

Mark Fernandez

I have to admit I was a little intimidated when I first joined GH2. You see, I am an old school weight lifter raised with the “I pick things up and put them down” mentality. Being fit meant having big muscles and being able to climb two flights of steps without throwing up. All it took for me to skip leg day was for someone to ask for a spot and 30 minutes later I was leaving the gym having had a great conversation and not an ounce of muscle hypertrophy. My nickname all through college was moose. Big upper body, toothpick legs. Yup that was me, a picture of fitness! I could toss around some weight using the six muscles I developed but I really didn’t know what fit meant or looked like until I joined GH2.

I am truly AMAZED by the athletes here. The number of people who are dedicated to fitness while maintaining full-time schedules is inspiring. This is NOT an easy task and these classes are certainly not easy. Prior to my first Metcon, I thought I was in pretty good shape. Five minutes into it my heart was trying to “alien” it’s way of my chest and all I kept thinking was oh shit, what did I get myself into.

As I struggled through classes over the coming weeks I constantly found motivation in seeing the strength, power, and determination of so many people. Whether it was Marie, Brian and Kristine seemingly breeze through Metcon’s as a warm up for their next classes, Denise doing everything from double unders to 195lb squats so effortlessly it made me want to vomit, Stephanie, Tom, Tanya, Plutarco, Heather and Hallie tackling strength classes with a snap and a smile, Heather tossing around a 50lb ball like it’s a beachball (she really should have had an 80, just sayin’), Bibs dedication and 100% effort on everything while battling through injuries, Shannon and Andi performing pull-ups with grace and power, and of course, Claudia, Angela and Pam, well, they’re just amazing, plus, plus…

I wish I knew everyone’s names because I could go on and on as there are so many more examples of athletes of all ages, shapes and sizes that give their all every class and have made such great improvements in their fitness. They should be SO PROUD of themselves. Now I understand when people say that fitness is more than just a look.
All this is possible because of the encouraging and supportive atmosphere created by Heather and Ross and the entire staff of GH2.

“I am truly thankful to be a part of this community!

– – –

Jacqueline Geer Murphy

When I joined GH2 in January 2014 I thought I was already in pretty good shape. I had completed a couple half marathons, a sprint triathlon and the occasional 10K and was running an average of 36 miles per week (or four 9 mi runs). But running is tough on the joints, can be occasionally lonely, and is no fun when the fickle NE weather doesn’t cooperate. Plus, I had read that it is important to incorporate strength training into any fitness program as we age because we naturally lose muscle mass after age 35.

Now, three years into my GH2 membership, I can happily report that I have lost 4 percentage points of body fat and am stronger and leaner at age 48 than at any other time in my life. What has made the difference in my fitness? Strength training! Honestly, I was never a big fan of strength training before joining GH2, but the use of free weights (as opposed to the dreaded Nautilus machines), the variety of the workouts and the satisfaction of being able to measure my progress in lifting heavier weights has become addictive.

I have also learned to incorporate more protein into my diet and — without compromising my guilty pleasures (wine, chocolate, cheese) — I have lost weight and gained muscle mass– translating to a higher Basal Metabolic Rate (the minimum calories my body needs to function during the day). So, despite the fact that I weigh less, I can eat more :)! Heather Baker knows what she is talking about — trust the program and see the results for yourself!

” The variety of the workouts and the satisfaction of being able to measure my progress in lifting heavier weights has become addictive.

– – –

Rich Packard (70 years old and loving GH2)

I’ve always hated going to the gym. I never would stick to it. I’d rather be outdoors doing something to stay in shape – biking, hiking, backpacking, mountain climbing, alpine skiing and snowshoeing. When I moved back to Mass from Colorado 4 years ago I slowly stopped being as active and gained weight, lost my core strength, conditioning, and stamina. Even my balance and stability started to suffer. I knew I needed to do something about it but had lost the desire. Then one night I was talking with a trainer from GH2 in Holden and she convinced me to go in and try it. Best decision I’ve made since I moved back!!

Yes it was pretty difficult at first – sore muscles, knees hurt, shortness of breath and I couldn’t do many of the exercises right or at all. But with the encouragement of ALL the trainers, who are all fantastic to work with, I kept going. I now go to a Met Con class 3 days a week. Each class is only 30 minutes long but is a high paced, intense workout. Get in – workout – get out. As hard as you have to work, there is a very satisfactory feeling of having done it again when it’s over. I’m losing weight and regaining muscle tone, core strength and conditioning. I’m feeling a whole lot better about myself.

Heather and all the trainers are amazing. They work with us constantly making sure we are doing all the exercises properly to get the most from them and to prevent getting hurt. They are constantly encouraging us in positive ways. From the beginning if there is anything you can’t do, they will give you a replacement exercise that you will be able to do and will provide the same benefit. For example I do skaters in place of burpees. And though we regularly do the same basic bunch of exercises to work the various muscle groups, they set up the classes so we never do the same routine twice. That keeps it from getting boring.

All the people I’ve met and workout with at GH2 are fun to be with and we all encourage each other no matter what level we are working at. There is never any negative reinforcement or motivation – only positive attitudes.I started at GH2 in April 2016 and am so glad I did. I’m very happy with the results and being part of the GH2 family.

Oh, I should probably tell you that I just turned 70 years old last week so don’t think being old and out of shape is a reason to not get started. Come in and see for yourself. It’ll be worth it!!

– – –

Dawn Miles Ertel

Just Breathe. Be Brave. And carry on.

When I first walked thru the door of GH2, I had no clue how incredible this chapter would be. Buzzers… Burpees… Bulgarian Bag Lunges… ??? I barely knew which direction to move! Yet, from day one everyone there told me what a great job I was doing… clearly they had me confused with someone else! What I quickly learned is that I was part of a whole new kind of team.

In those early days, I asked anyone and everyone how long they’d been coming… it gave me hope to know they kept on coming back, no matter how challenging the workouts. A little voice inside kept telling me to keep going… slowly I believed. And eventually, something clicked into place. I can still remember the moment I began pulling hard for myself (it was the band from the wall) – not just to keep up with anyone else or to be sure I was doing it the right way when a trainer was watching. I was stronger. I could feel it. I believed. Eventually I could smile thru workouts. Before I knew it, I was telling newcomers, “Great job today! Keep coming back!!” I believed it myself… suddenly I was lifting weights in Strength classes – heavy ones! – and running in the same circles with strong, dedicated women. Covered in chalk with callouses on my palms… I love it!!

Amazing women have inspired the way for me at GH2 – Heather Baker, Dawn Panarello, Helen Bibeau – and SO many new friends there supporting each challenge! Yes, I’ve dropped a few sizes and lost many, many inches… but I’m much more proud of what I’ve gained there – strength, courage, confidence, and a love for new adventures. Warrior Dash – why not? Running a 10-miler, Triathlon, Half Marathon – I’m in! There’s so much I’ve learned about myself over the last year at GH2 and I’m grateful for the love and support of Heather and the special team she has chosen to be at her side – each of these strong, beautiful women with their own talents and abilities to inspire… to help us all Believe. And then do it. Anything we set out to, really…

Heather has a way of just “knowing” – what we all need and when we need it. She has this unique way of bringing out the best in people, even when they’re not feeling it. So if you lose your momentum – which I did – Heather is still right there pulling for you, bringing you back to where you need to be your best self.

It’s been an amazing year of accomplishments that I could truly never have even dreamed of. But today I know this athletic girl who loves adventure has been inside me all along. Finally, I’m not looking over my shoulder… it really is me. Comfortable, after all these years, in my own skin and my own ability with the drive to do it – all in! I can do it because Heather and my GH2 family showed me how to Believe… And so will you!

Yes, I’ve dropped a few sizes and lost many, many inches… but I’m much more proud of what I’ve gained there – strength, courage, confidence, and a love for new adventures.

– – –

Anne Riordan Michelson

The other day Heather Baker sent me a text with a photograph of my original worksheet from when I first became a client in early September 2009.  It had my name and weight on it; Anne Michelson, 173 lbs.  I remember that day because my doctor had recently pointed her finger at me and told me to get more exercise and I found (my husband found actually) her business card at On the Rise Baking.  It got me thinking about the long road I’ve traveled in the past four years as a client of GH2.

I was 46 years old and had put on weight steadily a few pounds a year, not really paying attention to my body.  I won’t lie, those first few months of getting out of bed an extra hour early to exercise were not easy, and I like my sleep.  But, Heather’s passion as a trainer and for her clients can be felt immediately. Now I can’t image not getting up early to take a class and start my day!

That first year I gave up the sugary food, took two or three classes each week, and started spinning. I lost 20 lbs and two sizes.  For the next two years I consistently took three or four classes a week, improved my physical fitness and increased my strength.  She inspires me to keep active every day, whether I am in the gym or doing something else.

This past December I was looking at the calendar and thought about my 50th birthday, which was in March 2013.  I weighed approximately 154 lbs and wanted to get below 150 for my 50th birthday.  I knew that was a small goal but didn’t know how to reach it on my own (after all, I had already given up the junk earlier).  Heather was holding the 100 Day Challenge in January and although I had never chosen to participate before, I decided to join in.  I assumed it was going to be more of a traditional diet along with exercise but I could not have been more wrong, it is so much more.  It completely changed the way I eat and, added bonus, I lost almost 20 lbs!  If you had asked me what I expected to lose in this challenge I would have said ten as a high estimate.  I followed it up with the Paleo Challenge and lost another 5 lbs.  Three more clothing sizes down.  I am still amazed at how it works.

I was an athlete as a kid and was passionate about my sport; there is no way to train six and seven days a week without that emotion.  I lost it somewhere along the way in my adulthood and Heather Baker gave it back to me, being passionate about my physical self, knowing what I am capable of becoming and challenging myself to get there.

I could go on and on about the classes, trainers and facility but all of that has been said before, what I am saying is to trust me and walk in the door to check it out.  Heather Baker is a tremendous person and trainer, and leads an excellent team of trainers whose sole focus is to improve the life of every person who walks in the door.

I am now a few pounds away from “50 by 50” (losing 50 lbs by the age 50 – or 51 in my case) and I know I can make it AND if I need help there are people and a place that support my effort 100% and more.  Now is the time and GH2 is the place to be.

“Heather Baker is a tremendous person and trainer, and leads an excellent team of trainers whose sole focus is to improve the life of every person who walks in the door.”

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Dawn Lussier

I’m writing to tell you – It can be done at any age!

My daughter in law, Sarah, was a client of GH2.  She would often invite me to come with her to a class.  Honestly, I thought to myself there is no way I can do this.  She would immediately respond with “Yes, you can do this!”

So three years ago, I decided to give it a try and did my first class.  At that time, I was a 63 year old retired hairdresser, trade school teacher, owner of a few salons, and still working each and every day as a freelance visiting nurse at clients homes.  My job requires me to remain functionally active.  The bag I carry each day weighs 20 pounds and I climb stairs all day.  At my age, that is a task.

Up until I joined GH2, my workout regimen and lifestyle was similar to many people my age.  I was tired and overweight.  I would wake up each day and jump on the treadmill with little to no results. The worst part is I didn’t understand why…. The exercise was ineffective and my diet was a catastrophe.  I would eat anything and everything that was available to me and wash it down with a few glasses of beer.

GH2 changed all of that for me.  I had searched high and low for a gym that would hold me accountable and inspire me to work hard. That is when I found GH2.  Everyone worked hard and encouraged each other. I can still remember working out side by side with Helen.  She is still by my side but as a trainer now! Heather was the best!  She encourages you to work hard and makes sure that you do things correctly.  This is important at my age! Most importantly, she has always created ways for me to push myself, whether it would be encouraging me to take it to the next level with strength classes or to improve my diet with her guidance.  As a result, I have lost 36 pounds to date.  The best part is my cholesterol numbers are terrific.  I’m off of my medication.  I look and feel great!

Attending classes at GH2 is always challenging, forever encouraging, and without a doubt endlessly creative.  No workout is ever the same!  I’m so grateful for Heather and her vision.  She has made a world of difference in the lives of many by taking her vision and starting this gym.   I wish her and GH2 years of success and the ability to change many more lives… I just hope to hold my title for “oldest member” for a bit longer!

“Most importantly, she has always created ways for me to push myself, whether it would be encouraging me to take it to the next level with strength classes or to improve my diet with her guidance.  As a result, I have lost 36 pounds to date. “

– – –

Eve-Marie Ceryanek

“When the pupil is ready, the master appears.”
from the book “Light on the Path” 1886 by Mabel Collins.

I was ready. Ready to change the number on the scale and the number on the clothing tag. Ready to change the image in the mirror staring back at me. But none of those things were nearly as important to me as finding a way to get back to the person I was.

I have accomplished some things in my life that I’m proud of. I’ve achieved goals I set and even a few I didn’t set out to do:) My journey as a musician started at 17, and for almost 20 years I spent 6 hours a day in a practice room with my flute. I earned a Masters Degree by age 22 and won a full boat scholarship to a world renowned music conservatory in Brussels. I learned how to speak a couple of languages while I was there too. I’ve sat in some great orchestras and played in some of the world’s famous concert halls in this country and abroad. My students have won competitions, seats in competitive orchestras, and places at prestigious universities.

Hell, I gave birth to two 9-pound babies with no epidural or drugs! (Perhaps my “biggest achievement”:) And 12 years later, I’m proudest of my kids: they are big-hearted, friendly, funny, brave and smart.

I don’t mean to be an arrogant bragging idiot, but I’m just trying to say that I had accomplished some fairly difficult goals in my life. So why couldn’t I get ahold of myself, pull myself up by my boot straps, discipline myself and get fit and strong? That was the million dollar question. I can only begin the answer by explaining what didn’t work for me…

The voice in my head was loud and clear:
“You’re lazy.” “You’re not an athlete.” “You’re not coordinated.” “You’re undisciplined.” “You don’t want it bad enough.” It went on and on from there. For a long time. For too long. For years. But I knew that the objective evidence in the experience that was my life did not support the idea that I was lazy and undisciplined.

I tried 3 different gyms. I would go for awhile. I didn’t really know what I was doing or how to use the equipment. No one ever interacted with me or tried to help, and honestly, I was too embarrassed to ask for help. I thought I should know how to do it. I didn’t enjoy the aerobic step classes. By the time I got the hang of the choreography, they’d change it, and I’d get frustrated. I couldn’t seem to keep up the pace of the tempo set by the instructor and I’d get off the beat. (Professional musicians getting off the beat causes serious anxiety, I’m not even kidding. I would sometimes be close to full freak-out mode.)

Pretty soon I just stopped going. No one ever called to ask why. I guess it was an advantage to them as a business to have someone pay a membership and not come. So I just blamed myself for failing. Again. Until I realized those places failed ME, not the other way around. They did not give me what I needed to succeed.

I needed someone to care, to help, to explain things, to encourage, to notice when I wasn’t there. Success at a permanent lifestyle change was a mostly mental challenge for me. I had to overcome a negative attitude.
I wasn’t obese, I didn’t have high blood pressure or high cholesterol, but I was not happy with myself.

I needed to get myself in an environment that would help me change my mindset – an environment that was right for me. It was about being strong, fit, and confident in my physical self. My outside needed to match the brain and heart inside.

When I decided to try GH2 I talked with my husband about it. It cost more than the other gyms I tried. As I prattled on, he quickly interrupted and cut me off. My husband has a way of cutting through the BS and getting right to the chase. I’ll never forget what he said: “Babe, it wouldn’t matter if the other places were free because they didn’t work for you, so they were worthless. Give this place 3 months. If it works, it will be worth every dollar.” He was right. Let me explain why:

  1. GH2 is not a gym. It is an environment where people come to accomplish their physical goals.
    Trainers know your name and start using it by the second time you go. That means a lot.
    They watch you and help you and explain things clearly and respectfully. They make sure you don’t get injured.
    They give you modifications when you can’t do the exercise yet. There is always a modification or an alternate choice.
    You can start from wherever you are.
  2. You won’t find a row of treadmills in this place. There is really cool equipment to use- things I’ve never heard of or seen before, things with names like prowlers, Bulgarian bags, vipers! This takes care of the boredom I soon experienced at other places.
    Each day is different at GH2. Trainers create unique, interesting, and challenging sequences for us. I like that!
  3. You make an appointment to train. It makes you show up. It makes you accountable.
    I’m confident that if I missed a few in a row, I’d get a phone call saying, “Um, where are you, is something wrong?”
    That never happened in the previous places I had memberships to. I was invisible. I hid. No one cared.

I started a challenge almost 8 weeks ago. I get weighed and measured tomorrow, but that doesn’t matter nearly as much to me as the fact that I have trained every single day since this challenge started. That was huge for me- just showing up every day. No excuses, just do the practice and I did. I was the queen of avoiding working out because I thought I didn’t like it. Turns out, in the right environment, with the right support, I like it!

I did every sprint on Saturday mornings. I haven’t run since high school. That was 30 years ago. I used to be one of the last in gym class. When one of the sprints was to run a mile, I honestly didn’t think I could do that. I thought I would have to stop and walk part of it. I was nervous at the start, but I ran the whole time, and finished over a minute faster than I had estimated. Same with the 100 yard dash. I honestly thought I might trip and fall. I was sure I would be last by a lot. Turns out I didn’t fall and I wasn’t last.

When one of the challenges was a farmer’s hold, I didn’t even think I could pick it up. In fact, when I tried, I barely budged it and started to walk away. Dawn said “No. Go Back. Don’t pick it up. Just hold on tight and stand up.” I thought I wouldn’t get the 30 seconds for the 1 point. Dawn said, “You got this Eve-Marie.” Turns out I held it for 1 minute and got 2 points.

My story may not be as impressive or meaningful as some of the people I’ve met at GH2 who have lost incredible amounts of weight, or have worked really hard to overcome serious health problems. But I think my message is important and here it is:

ALL things are possible with the right mindset and in the right environment. For me, GH2 is that environment.

When I am on the rower, and a trainor says, “Come on Eve-Marie I know you’ve got more than that, come on.”, it makes me believe that I can do it. And then all of a sudden I can do it and I am doing it. Same with pushups and burpees. I can do a few now. I’m not an easy crier, but I honestly felt myself well up with tears one day when I did my first push up on my toes, the right way.

“At times our own light goes out and is rekindled by a spark from another person. Each of us has cause to think with deep gratitude of those who have lighted the flame within us.”
Albert Schweitzer

All you trainers have helped me rekindle my spark and find my light again!

Thank you to Heather Baker, a visionary entrepreneur-athlete, who sees the athlete in all of us, even when we can’t. Thank you for giving us an environment where we can do the work we need to do.

And thank you to all the trainers who bring their unique personalities and skill sets to the workout. You keep it fresh, even when it may be the fifth time in a row you’ve taught it! The example you women set for us is truly inspiring.

Helen, when you showed up to work the bag with us the morning after your boxing match, that was impressive.
I thought, how cool is she, that is totally bad-ass! That made me think, maybe one day I could learn how to box:)

You all are changing lives. You’ve changed mine. Thank you. You have helped another person who was ready and just needed a hand to get started:)

Eve-Marie Ceryanek
Mother, Musician, Partner, Friend, Teacher, and perhaps one day, Athlete:)

– – –

Cindy Malnicof

Having completed the Lean and Clean in 2013 Challenge, I was compelled to write about my experience.  All I can say is, I’m a believer.  I’m a believer in the 80-20 split (that’s what I like to call it), and that mantra rang through my head repeatedly from early October to mid-December.  Anytime I was feeling the need to splurge on sweets, I would remind myself of the 80-20 split, meaning 80% of what you look like is diet related, 20% is the result of your workouts. 

Having the knowledge I have learned from Heather and her team throughout the challenge and applying it to my daily life has made me leaner, stronger, healthier, and more fit.

I started at GH2 in March of 2012, I am an avid runner and exercised at home a few times a week and thought I was in pretty good shape.  I will never forget my first GH2 Met Con class, I loved it!  It pushed me to work hard, knowing Heather was watching, much harder than I would ever push myself working out alone in the basement.  I added more  Met Con classes each week, I loved the variety of the workouts, the great trainers, the positive attitude of everyone involved!  I decided to kick it up a notch and register for the Lean and Clean Challenge in October.  To be honest, I wasn’t sure what to expect, I have always been the tall, skinny body type, but never really muscular or toned.  I really didn’t expect to see the results I have achieved, but with strength classes, sprint classes, as well as Met Con, I have become leaner, stronger, and faster!  However, the biggest part of this whole puzzle is the food.  I would always reason my “treats” by telling myself that I can indulge in sweets because I work out.  Little did I know, that with each bite of chocolate, I was undoing all of the hard work I was putting in at the gym. 

The knowledge I have gained pertaining to diet has truly helped me to achieve a better physic and a healthier body.

Maintaining a “clean” diet is the most challenging part of achieving results because you are accountable to yourself 24/7.  Temptations are everywhere, but as I learned from the challenge, if you shop well, and think ahead, and be prepared, you can avoid falling to temptation.  Don’t get me wrong, it’s okay to splurge once and a while, but remaining faithful to clean eating takes dedication and will power.  Next time you leave the gym after a tough workout, look up at that big red stop sign, “You can’t out train a bad diet”.  This my friends is so true….and when temptation strikes, just repeat that mantra in your head…

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Liza Noyes

I should tell you a little about myself so you know what I am up against! I am 37 years old and the mother of twin girls who are now 12.  I have been overweight ever since my pregnancy when I put on 50 plus pounds of not just baby weight.  I suffer from high blood pressure and have been medicated for it for the past five years.  I am challenged by food as I see food as a good pleasing mechanism for my mind and my depression.  I have struggled with different exercise routines, different gyms and have even fell captive to the dreaded DVD’s that say you are supposed to look like them by the time you are done.  What a bunch of BS.  Besides, doing the same routine over and over is BORING!

I’m not sure about any of you, but I know I needed someone to hold me accountable for the work I was going to be doing!  I needed the push and still need the push to get me through each and every workout.  That is why GH2 has been the best decision I have made for my life, for my health.  I couldn’t have asked for a better group of people to go to the gym with and work out with.  I have made so many new friends and have learned so much about myself in such a short amount of time. I have kept my blood pressure below normal and have gained strength both mentally and physically that I never thought I could.  I am working hard for not only my life, but for my children’s as well.  It is great to be a positive role model for my girls!

I am truly amazed at the transformation I have gone through.  I am blessed with confidence of mind, body and soul. 

Without a doubt, GH2 has saved my life and I thank each and every one of the trainers and members that I work out with each day.  It is an honor to know you!

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Andrea Berger

In Nov of 2011, I started a fitness routine at home.  After several months of working out 5 mornings a week I was very discouraged.  I was not losing any weight.  My goal was to shed 5-6 lbs that were still hanging on after the birth of my third child.  In Feb of 2012, I began attending the Met-Con classes at GH2.

Before the first class I was nervous and a bit intimidated that I would not be able keep up. Heather and her staff are fantastic. They are welcoming and try to understand your fitness level and limitations and will work with you. There are people at many various fitness levels at each session and the workout challenges at many levels. The workouts are fast paced and each day is something unique.  In the 7 months that I have been attending the Met-Con classes at GH2, I do not think there has been a repeat of the same work out.  It is challenging and the varying format keeps it interesting.  You will not be bored!  I started one day a week in the beginning and I am there 4-5 times a week.  The best part is I have lost 10 lbs and have kept it off.  I have been very pleased with the results.  Heather has created a wonderful environment of respect and hard work. The facility is clean and bright with lots of equipment.

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Amy Curran

GH2 has literally changed my life.

Before I started working out here I could barely get off of my couch. Moving around was torture and my self esteem was at an all time low.  I reached out to Heather when I finally hopped on the scale and saw my all time high weight number staring back at me.

I was nervous that I would be just too big to work out at GH2.  I couldn’t have been more wrong.  I started out taking personal training sessions with Heather.  After 6 weeks I joined the gym and started taking the Met-Con classes.  It was a big step for me personally.  It is daunting being a severely overweight person and walking in to a gym.  I was afraid that I would be made fun of (as I had been at other gyms, sad to say).

I could not have been more wrong.  The members at GH2 have been nothing but kind and encouraging.  The workouts are a challenge but I have never felt like I could give up. If something is out of my range right now, the exercise is modified so that I can still work out like everyone else in the class. 

It is empowering for me to see how far I have come and to visualize just how far I can go!  

I never thought I would love going to the gym like I do!  My whole outlook on life has changed, I am a happier person, mother and wife and I feel like I have the best support network around. Heather has always encouraged me, always made me feel like I can do the work and always pushed me to try new things with confidence.  I have since worked out with all of the other trainers at GH2 and they are all equally wonderful.  I truly have nothing but amazing things to say about this gym.  You owe it to yourself to try it and see what the hype is all about.

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Laura Clancey

I work full time, I am a mom, I don’t have time. These are just a fraction of the excuses I had why I could not exercise.  I was full of excuses and full of envy of others who did exercise.  I am the stereotypical person who would join a gym, then go for a month and never go again but continued to pay because I was too ashamed to go back, still overweight and cancel my membership.  When I did go to the gym I would go on the treadmill maybe do a little weights and think I just got in a good work out.

Last November I was over it, my lifestyle, being overweight and making up excuses and realized I needed to do something about it.  My friend had been going to Heather and looked incredible My envy got the best of me so I decided to take a class.  Right there and then I joined because if I knew I was making a financial commitment, I would make the commitment to myself.  I can honestly say it has been the best decision I have ever made.  I have learned what it means to work out.

At first I was nervous, but Heather made me feel like I could do it and at my own pace, but with a little push.  Then I noticed I started to push myself, and with time making little milestones (actually running a mile was a huge one for me!).   As time goes on, I look and feel better.  To finally get into those jeans (we all have them in the back of the closet) or actually look good in that shirt is a feeling I cannot describe, and yes it did bring me to tears sometimes.

I cannot say enough about the staff at GH2.  They actually care about each and every one of us. 

The camaraderie I have received from the others in the classes is incredible.   I was never part of an athletic team but here at GH2 that is what we are. We are one big team where the goal of winning is getting healthy, stronger and looking good.

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Jeffrey Cammuso

In November of 2011, I weighed 232 pounds and I was not working out at all.  I was hoping and praying that some day I could get down to 210 pounds and maintain that weight.  I own a tent company so I worked outside pounding spikes and continuously lifting rental items.  I thought maybe at my age, 52, that should be enough to keep me in shape.  Today, after a little over 3 months of hanging out at GH2 Fitness, I weigh 199 pounds.

My wife started attending Met-Con classes, and the results were very noticeable within the first month.  Day after day, my wife would say, “You should try Heather.  She’s the best.  She will straighten you out.” After hearing it over and over again for 6 months, I thought I should give Heather’s class a test run.  I thought that if my wife could do it, how hard could it be?

I tried out Heather’s Met-Con and Strength classes at GH2 Fitness in Holden.  Early on I looked for every excuse not to go, however, I had to prove to my wife that if she could do it, I could do it.  After 3 weeks, I was hooked.  I now work out faithfully 5 to 6 times a week. 

I feel great and I find myself wanting to eat better every day. I feel young again.

I am now confident that I can push myself to reach the many goals that are available at GH2 Fitness.

I want to thank my wife, Laurie, for believing in me and the GH2 fitness members for their continuous encouragement. That teamwork concept comes naturally to GH2 members.

Lastly, I want to thank Heather Baker.  She cares about her members and it shows.  She teaches with patience and respect and somehow knows everyone’s confidence level, abilities and limitations.

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