Patty Thompson

I’m not sure where to begin in expressing my appreciation for the BroMenn Health and Fitness Center. The facility itself is amazing! It’s esthetically appealing and is beautifully maintained…and of course they have all the pertinent equipment. But even more impressive is the staff. Everyone is upbeat, pleasant, helpful and encouraging. Those of us enjoying the health center are all ages, different sizes, and have a variety of stories. Everyone has a story to tell.  And surprise, surprise, it really IS a ‘judge-free zone’! 

My story is trying to accommodate age, obesity and Primary Progressive MS.  I am concentrating on wellness! Morning is when I have the energy to do those things I want to do. Afternoons are iffy; evenings are risky. The programming offered allows me to make good use of the morning classes. I attend three different water classes six days a week. The instructors are all amazing! High fives to Julie, Jackie and Rebecca! We are shown ways to modify any given exercise movement and reminded that self-love is important. We are encouraged to celebrate what we are able to do rather than be fretful about what we can’t do. The lifeguards chuckle with us (never AT us), and they watch carefully that we don’t drink too much water. Even the locker room ladies are ‘rock stars’.  We always have shelves of clean towels and they manage not to bark at us for dripping all over the floor as they persist in keeping the floor dry for safety. 

The track is a treasure! With the climate controlled, cushioned, no-sidewalk-crack area for walking and running (uh, no…I don’t run), I rarely walk outside anymore. Cody has also been helpful suggesting different workouts for strengthening muscle groups.   

The results? I am stronger. It is still common for me to lay down in the afternoon, but I no longer require a daily nap. Range of motion has increased. And I’ve lost over 20 pounds! Trying to get my arms and legs to do different things is a challenge, but I’m doing better. I see and feel how much better I feel. I would say that this has even improved cognition, but I don’t want to invalidate my praise of the facility or any of the staff.  What started as my determination to improve my wellness has become a social gathering as well. 

 Rebecca, who was teaching Aqua Zumba, suggested and then encouraged me to try some ‘land’ classes.  I was worried I would drag the class down, but I decided to give it a try. As a result of her encouragement (and my bravery), I tried Body Moves and Barre Fusion. Not only could I (sort of) keep up, I actually LIKED them!  Adding these classes has significantly increased my strength. This was evidenced when we returned to our favorite hikes last winter. I could climb (yes, CLIMB) and hike further than I had been able to do the year before. Not every day is great. But every day is better than it was before I worked out.