1. We originally met at the Pulse 2.5 years ago. I don’t remember what motivated me to start your class. Ready to try something new? Different?
2. When I started the class, the youngest of my three girls was 2 years old and I wasn’t finding time to work out. I was so busy taking care of everyone else, that I wasn’t taking care of me. I wasn’t excited about a 5:30 a.m. class, but it seemed to be my only time to exercise. Working out at 5:30 has become such a habit that I actually look forward to it. After class, I have more energy to start the day and I get more accomplished!
3. The one obstacle that may have prevented me from buying your services would have been if I was intimidated by you. If I had only seen you work out with the students/athletes, I may not have become a client.
4. My first impression of your classes was great! There was no doubt that you knew your stuff! I appreciate the full body workout – starting with our feet and working up. What makes you different is your hands on approach and attention to detail! It isn’t possible to hide in the back row. You have a definite concern and appreciation for each of your clients. It’s obvious you are there for your clients and want the best for your clients. Your use of positive encouragement and humor make the classes fun!
5. Since taking your classes I am so much stronger which has led to greater confidence. One of my greatest fears is to grow old and not be able to move well. Your classes help to work on not only building strength but maintaining stability and flexibility. Another benefit of your classes is that I’m healthier. Prior to taking your classes I had pneumonia every year. Since taking your classes, I have not had pneumonia and rarely get sick. (TMI??)
When I met Jason in the summer of 2013, I was looking for a way to revamp my fitness routine. I like variety, so lifting weights and running was getting a little stale. When I first saw his class, I could see how hard everyone was working—they were panting so hard, they could barely cheer their partners on through the last set of exercises. It seemed like this class could work for anyone—not everyone was young and super-fit, but it was clear everyone in the class was being challenged. It looked like a lot of fun, so I resolved to join in and see what it was like.
The first workout was tough. We progressed from foam rolling, crawling, and stretching, to more intense exercises like kettlebell swings, burpees, and barbell thrusters. When I got home after the workout, I had to skip putting on eyeliner because my arms were so tired and shaky. But Jason was so knowledgeable, patient, and encouraging, I knew I was going to go back. Even after having me in his class for the last 6 months, he always finds new ways to challenge me and help me improve my fitness. In the short time I’ve been working with Jason, I’ve seen tons of improvement in my strength. I started out swinging a 20-pound kettlebell, and now 80 pounds is no problem! A lot of the benefits I’ve gained from the class were totally unanticipated. Because the movements are natural and functional, I’ve found that I have much better posture now than I did before. I used to have a lot of neck pain, and at this point, it’s completely disappeared. I can also tell my metabolism is improving, and people have commented on how much more toned my arms and calves are. I also found that his class helped a lot with running; when I started, I couldn’t hop on one leg because the pain in my knee was so bad; within 2 months of working with Jason, my knees felt better than they have in years.
One of my favorite things about this class, though, is how I feel about myself. I’ve never been an athlete, so I often feel self-conscious in classes. I’m never the strongest, the fastest, or the most graceful, so I often feel as if I don’t belong. Jason does a great job of building a culture where the ultimate goal is to be a better version of yourself every day. I never felt uncomfortable or ashamed of what I could do in the class. The class is hard for everyone, so we’re always excited to see someone smoke their old record of 20 burpees in a minute…even if our own record is way higher. As someone who has always been reluctant to join workout groups, I can honestly say that with Jason and his class, I’m excited to get up in the morning and show that 80 pound kettlebell who’s boss.
I am 55 years old with two active boys and have had chronic lower back pain for almost 20 years due to a couple of accidents. Doctors in four states have tried to help me manage that pain and increase my mobility with limited success. After several visits to the Mayo Clinic, my doctors there told me that my best recovery action was to significantly develop my core and back strength—well beyond what physical therapy could offer. Jason’s guidance, training, and discipline gave me confidence that I could get better and changed the way I manage my own health. His program for me resulted from his personalized assessment of what I needed to improve my pain and back health.
I have been going to Ignition now for about five months, three times per week and I am just coming home from a family vacation of hiking on the north shore. Before training with Jason I could not have even considered an activity like hiking on rugged trails that require strength, conditioning and balance. When I joined Ignition and Jason asked me what my personal fitness goals were, I told him I wanted to be able to keep up with my boys and be ready to hike in New Zealand, where my family and I are going early next year. I will be able to reach my goals. My mobility, strength, and balance have increased enormously and my pain is manageable for the first time in years. My membership at Ignition costs me far less than what I was paying for physical therapy sessions only a few times a month.
This was the year to make a change. I was struggling mainly, of course, with weight issues. I stepped on a scale and reality sunk in that I was the heaviest I have been my whole life. Along with the weight change, my goals were to gain confidence, feel better (more energized), get into shape, live healthier and find a sense of pride/accomplishment.
I knew a regular gym was not for me. Training on my own was always a struggle –it was easy to come up with excuses, not knowing how to change up the workouts or to come up with a program on my own to best suit me, and I needed someone to hold me accountable and push me to new heights. March 27th, 2013 I met Jason at his facility in St. Peter. Jason met me with a solid hand shake and smile then proceeded with asking the right questions to get to know me and my goals. His personality was high energy, caring, supportive and he truly listened to what I was looking for in a gym. The gym had kettle bells, dumbbells, barbells, monkey bars, strengthening bands, rollers, etc. No machines I asked? His stance is strictly about making sure someone can move correctly, learn the proper form to avoid injuries, improve range of motion, and enhance one’s confidence. He extended an offer to train the next morning at 5:30 AM. REALLY? I am the type of person that loves to sleep in, typically waking up around 7:00 AM. Jason said come in for a trial – see what you think – then decide from there. Also, Jason said with his program, he would recommend 3 days a week (versus 7) to allow my muscles/body time to recover. I was caught off guard because I was on a mission and ready to put all the time and effort into this that was necessary, figuring on 5-7 days a week in order to see results. However, decided to work with Jason and his program of 3 days a week (Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday mornings).
My first day seemed nearly impossible. However, after a few more sessions with the support and encouragement from Jason and the rest of the class to stick with it, finally it all clicked and I was finishing workouts and increasing my weights. It felt GREAT – I had a sense of accomplishment —I never felt crushed and embarrassed. Five-thirty was becoming routine– the class was counting on me to be there and a true sense of community between all of us was formed. They accepted me from day one even though I was struggling. They never gave up on me —they encouraged me to take baby steps to get to my goals.
During the first 3 weeks of class, after feeling a sense of accomplishment – I stepped on the scale and I was discouraged …Up 8 pounds. REALLY? Working hard in the gym and gaining weight? However, Jason never let me quit. Once I told him why I was stressing, – he recommended I see a nutritionist. I had always heard it is 80% eating healthy(ier) and 20% working out. After talking with the nutritionist and learning about what I was eating, the relevance behind certain foods and tweaking my meals/snacks, I was creating a new lifestyle.
By Memorial Day Weekend, I had reached my 1st goal: Losing 10 pounds. Not only did I lose 10 pounds, I also lost the 8 I gained from the first couple of weeks. June 26th – I was down another 7 pounds. July 20th – I hit my 2nd goal: Down 20 pounds! Never thought 20 would be possible. 3rd goal: Feeling great and having confidence by November 16th which was my sister’s wedding date. Guess what? By that time of year, I was down 30 pounds and feeling on top of the world. My bridesmaid’s dress had to be altered over 5 inches on the sides. My jeans went from size 14 or 33 to 9/10 or 29. The scale can be a major obstacle (especially for women) – measure your success by inches or simply on how much better you feel…
Unbelievable! All natural. No diet. No pills. Better lifestyle choices, a support team and a fun atmosphere at workouts all contributed to my success. Jason provided a major portion of my support team throughout this process. He was always a text, email or phone call away with tips, encouragement and his knowledge on how to continue towards achieving my goals. Jason gets to know each of his clients on a personal level to know what to focus his attention on. From watching the way you move, asking what is sore and telling you what could be causing the soreness, to figuring out your goals with you and checking in from time to time, to being a friend to go out and have a beer with and enjoy time outside of the gym together.
Believe in yourself – Results will follow.
Don’t make it a New Year’s Resolution – Make it a Lifestyle.
Thanks Jason for your words of encouragement, months of support, and dedication to helping others improve their lifestyles.
Randi McCabe (AKA “MORGAN”)