Olivia Graves- July Member of the Month at The Strength Collective

July’s featured member is Olivia Graves, a 24 year old retail worker who has made amazing progress in her fitness journey- not just with her body, but with her mindset as well. Read on to learn more about Olivia and prepare to be inspired to start (or stick to) your fitness journey too!

Q: What got you started working out?
A: I was tired of feeling weak doing just the simplest of tasks. I had no energy and I felt like I hadn’t pushed myself to do better, so I decided to drop the ball, join a new gym, and told myself this is the last time i’m giving up. Been back since December and been there almost everyday since. I’m back to loving the gym.

Q: How many days per week do you typically work out?
A: 5-6

Q: What’s your favorite exercise?
A: HIIT training

Q: What’s your favorite post-workout meal/snack?
A: Bad answer. Terrible answer…… but….. Starbucks… Iced Caramel Machiatto lol

Q: What do you find most challenging about working out?
A: Getting there. There’s days where I don’t want to go, but I do anyway because that’s not how progress is made. Also, stepping out of my comfort zone and doing the exercises I hate the most.

Q: How do you stay motivated to work out consistently?
A: I used to have a really bad habit of quitting after not seeing progress, which makes no sense. I’ve just completely changed my mindset. I go because it makes me feel better and the results just follow. I also tend to tell myself there’s no point in quitting — this is where I am, this is where my body is right now — people can see where I am, regardless if i’m in the gym or not, so I would rather them see me in the gym trying to better myself than being upset about my progress.

Q: What advice do you have for someone who’s thinking about starting or just getting started in the gym?
A: Stay away from the scale. Take photos instead. Don’t have “weight-loss” as your main source of going. Quit setting unrealistic goals. Find workouts that you enjoy doing that keep you coming back. Make the gym your alone time — you get an entire headspace to yourself, with your favorite music, endorphins, and at the end of it all, you always feel better.

Q: What fitness accomplishment are you most proud of?
A: I just squatted 185 the other day. 3 sets of 2. I wouldn’t even touch the rack when I started. Now i’m learning to love it.

Q: Tell us a random fact about yourself that people might not know:
A: Still terrified of the dark….. yes, i’m an adult.

Q: What’s your favorite thing about working out at The Strength Collective?
A: Everyone is nice. It’s a nice little community we’ve all built and I’ve never met anyone in there not willing to help someone else.

Olivia, we are so proud of you for all the progress you’ve made so far, and can’t wait to see how much you’re going to continue to make! Thanks for letting us be a part of your journey!

Make Gym-timidation Your Friend

Gym-timidation is a term certain fitness centers use to describe the feeling many people have when they enter most gyms-fear. Fear of looking stupid when you don’t know how to use a machine. Fear of getting in the way of that guy who looks like he could punt you into next week. Fear of not fitting in. Fear of failure.

I get it. There was once a time when I only entered the weight room when it was empty. When I did start using the weight room with other people in it, I only tried exercises I hadn’t done before when they were gone. I spent way more time on cardio machines and running outdoors, because I knew I could do that without screwing it up (minus the times I tripped and fell, but that’s a story for another time).

I used to feel all those fears too, so I get it. I get how appealing an advertisement can be for gyms that claim “No Gym-timidation Allowed” and “Judgement Free Zone” because it feels safe. A gym filled with 90% treadmills is within your comfort zone-you know how to work those. A gym full of equipment you’ve never used before is anxiety inducing. There’s so many ways to make a fool of yourself!

Here’s the problem with staying inside your comfort zone- that’s not where the results are.

You belong in the gym, in the weight room, just as much as anyone else. You deserve to be there, to get the results you’ve always wanted, just as much as anyone else. I promise you, if you’re just brave enough to step outside your comfort zone and try something new, you can accomplish amazing things.

If you’re ready to step out of your comfort zone and into the weight room, we’re here for you. We’ll show you around and answer all your questions. We’ll introduce you to some new gym friends. We even have personal training and group training to help you get those results you’re after even faster. Give us a call to get started!

We can’t wait to help you become the person you’ve always wanted to be.

22 WOD to End Veteran Suicide at The Strength Collective

Don’t Fall For This! The Best Time is NOW

We all know there are times of the year that people are overall more committed to their fitness goals.

January goes without saying with New Year’s resolutions.

March-April is also an interesting time from my perspective as a fitness professional.

It’s the time when those who fell off the resolution wagon begin thinking about getting summer-ready. And it’s still cold in many places, so it starts to feel like you’ve got forever to make it happen.

But as it always does, summer creeps up FAST.

Then this crazy thing starts to happen in people’s minds…

Once May/June hits and the kids are out of school, I’ve seen WAY too many people convince themselves that it’s just not going to happen this year.

They literally give up on their fitness and improving their nutrition because they didn’t achieve their perception of “summer ready” before summer hit.

Maybe it sounds kinda crazy when you read it here, but I’ve seen it happen over and over again.

That’s why, if you’re in this spot right now or this thought has crossed your mind, I want you to take action right away – like NOW – so you don’t fall for this false belief.

You can absolutely do this. You have the time and space. The timing is PERFECT.

Believe those things, take action, and create a “summer body” you’ll be so proud of year-round. J

If you’re ready, email us at info@strengthcollectivegalesburg.com. We’ll get in touch with you ASAP to start the transformation.

Cannot wait!

Todd Good- June Member of the Month at The Strength Collective Galesburg

This month’s feature member is Todd Good! Todd is a 46 year old linehaul driver for UPS. He started Barbell Strong group training last October and has gained a ton of strength and mobility in the last nine months. Continue reading below to learn more about Todd and his fitness journey!

Q: What got you started working out?
A: I had an injured shoulder that needed some strength and for my overall well being.

Q: How many days per week do you typically work out? What groups are you a part of?
A: 2 days. Barbell strong. It’s a fun class and I enjoy the friends I have made.

Q: What’s your favorite exercise?
A: I enjoy all of it. Squats kill me.

Q: What’s your favorite post-workout meal/snack?
A: Subway chicken breast sandwich. I love a good samwich.

Q: What do you find most challenging about working out?
A: Pushing through various injuries. Knee, foot and shoulder. Although since I have started I definitely have improved my overall strength and feel better. Also, I work 3rd shift so I get tired often.

Q: What keeps you motivated to work out regularly?
A: I just enjoy it. Also, being in a class with scheduled times helps.

Q: What advice do you have for someone who’s thinking about getting started in the gym?
A: Sign up for a class with Jenna and Katrina. If you don’t know what to do you can learn. I have lifted in the past but I have learned a lot about form and technique.

Q: What is something you couldn’t do when you started, that you can do now?
A: Overhead presses. My shoulders were terribly weak. I have suffered dislocations to both. Grrr.

Q: Tell us a random fact about yourself that people might not know:
A: I love Beastie Boys music. My wife will not let me hang my posters in our house. So my Beastie shrine is in my garage.

Q: What’s your favorite thing about working out at The Strength Collective?
A: My new friends and the atmosphere. I am a dog lover so I fit in well.

Thank you Todd for being an awesome member of our fit fam, and keep up the hard work!

Kristal Frisque- May Member of the Month at The Strength Collective Galesburg

Kristal in her natural habitat 🙂

This month’s Member of the Month is Kristal Frisque! Kristal is an artist and Owner of Art Defined Studios (check out the Facebook page here to learn more and get artsy!). She recently ran the St. Jude Half Marathon in Nashville, Tennessee. Read on to learn more about Kristal:

Q: What got you started working out?
A: My health. I knew that I needed to take better care of myself & have always liked strength training, so it was a good place to start. Plus, there’s lots of health problems that run in my family, so I wanted to be as proactive as I could be to fight off genetics.

Q: How many days per week do you typically work out? What groups are you a part of?
A: 5 days a week; I take the lunch class at SC & run with my running group, Sole Sisters.

Q: What’s your favorite exercise?
A: Riding my ElliptiGO! It’s super fun and great on your joints.

Kristal’s ElliptiGO! (It’s like a bike/elliptical hybrid!)

Q: What’s your favorite post-workout meal/snack?
A: I’ve never really had a routine with this, but I have used Advocare Spark & protein shakes….beer is great too!

Q: What do you find most challenging about working out?
A: My workouts are mostly solitary, in that I go for long runs or bike rides in the country by myself. Being a long distance runner, I not only have to prepare my schedule for the time I dedicate to my workouts, but also the mental game. I know that I’m going to have my aches & pains, but I have to endure through them when I’m out in the middle of nowhere & accept that I have to run back using the muscles that hurt.

Q: What keeps you motivated to work out regularly?
A: I love the pain! Seriously. The mental accomplishment keeps me going every time. The fact that I owned that workout is very gratifying.

Q: What advice do you have for someone who’s thinking about getting started in the gym?
A: Just do it! Don’t overthink it or you’ll never start. And your body, your level of fitness is enough. You do not have to fit a visual mold or wear the right gear. You are worth it & deserve to be healthy. We all come in different shapes and sizes, different areas of struggle. There’s no judgement at the gym. Everyone is super supportive and motivating.

After a hard Lean&Strong workout!

Q: What is something you couldn’t do when you started, that you can do now?
A: My core muscles are so much stronger! I still can’t do those blasted pushups, but that’s a long term goal to do them well & in good form.

Q: Tell us a random fact about yourself that people might not know:
A: I was born in Japan.

Q: What’s your favorite thing about working out at The Strength Collective?
A: Hands down the support and one on one help. Lord bless her, Jenna is SO patient with me! And both she & Kat will correct my form, so I can improve. The group is also amazingly supportive.

Thank you for being an awesome member, Kristal! We love having you as a part of our community!

Gin Gartin- April Member of the Month at The Strength Collective

April’s Member of the Month is Gin Gartin- she’s a 30 year old Distribution Coordinator at Dyna-Gro Seed from Galva and she has been absolutely crushing her fitness and weight loss journey since last June.

Q: What got you started working out?
A: Wanting to be more comfortable with myself and become a stronger version of myself.

Q: How many days per week do you typically work out? What groups are you a part of?
A: I try for at least 4-5 days a week. 2 of those are of course the Warrior Strong kickboxing class which I love!

Left: Gin before starting her health and fitness journey.
Right: Gin at the end of February-so much amazing progress already!

Q: What’s your favorite exercise?
A: Um kickboxing of course!

Q: What’s your favorite post-workout meal/snack?
A: I am sure this sounds lame but it’s a protein shake. Right now I’m working through the ice cream sandwich flavor I have. If you haven’t tried it you need to!

Q: What do you find most challenging about working out?
A: I am still really heavy so any of the cardio stuff is still a struggle for me but I am working on that!

Q: What keeps you motivated to work out regularly?
A: Seeing my results on the scale and my clothing fitting better.

Q: What advice do you have for someone who’s thinking about getting started in the gym?
A: Don’t think about it just go for it. Even if it is something small to start with just go for it! Everyone has to start somewhere. Find something you actually enjoy doing.

Left: Gin before starting Warrior Strong Kickboxing last October.
Right: Gin at the end of February

Q: What is something you couldn’t do when you started, that you can do now?
A: Walk my dog around the block around the block without being out of breath.

Q: Tell us a random fact about yourself that people might not know:
A: I probably have at least 20 pairs of Nike shoes if not more lol

Q: What’s your favorite thing about working out at The Strength Collective?
A: The support. From the ladies in my class to the coaches. Everyone is there for you to cheer you on and help you through it!

Gin, you are awesome and we are so proud of you! Thank you for being one of our amazing members, and keep up the hard work!

5 Ways Group Training Will Help You Reach Your Goals

Lean&Strong Lunch at The Strength Collective Galesburg

At The Strength Collective Galesburg we offer a variety of small group personal training classes to help you reach your fitness goals. Occasionally we have people ask why they should consider paying for group training when they could do group fitness classes for free at another gym? Well, there’s a ton of benefits to group training, but today we’ll share 5 reasons group training is awesome and will help you reach your goals.

Surrounding yourself with other people with similar goals will help motivate you to succeed.

You’ve probably heard the old saying “You become the average of the 5 people you spend the most time with.” Research shows that the people you surround yourself with makes a significant impact on your habits-not just your five closest friends, but your entire social network. So if you have a goal you want to achieve, becoming a part of a group in which people are taking action to achieve similar goals to yours can increase your chances of success exponentially.

One of the greatest benefits of group training is that you’re surrounded by people who want to achieve the same things you do. You’ve all signed up and committed to being a part of the group. You get to know each other and become friends over the course of the session. Everyone cheers each other on when the workout gets hard, and if you’re a competitive spirit, working out with other people can encourage you to push a little harder than you would if you were alone. And when you miss a class, there’s a group of people asking where you are and when you’ll be back!

Effective workouts are created for you- no guesswork.

Have you ever walked into the gym to workout, having no idea what you wanted or needed to do? Maybe you threw together a few random exercises, or hopped on the treadmill for 30 minutes, but at the end of your workout you kind of felt like you wasted your time.

Our group training workouts are full body workouts created by a certified personal trainer, so you can rest assured you’re always going to get an effective, balanced workout when you walk in the gym. We know you’re busy and don’t want to waste time, so we make sure to focus on the exercises that are going to get you the best results in the least time. No more wasting hours on the internet trying to find workouts or programs not knowing if they’ll even be right for you. We’ve got you covered.

Supervision from a coach helps you push yourself and prevent you from getting injured.

Barbell Strong at The Strength Collective Galesburg

If you’ve ever been afraid to try new exercises because you’re afraid of getting hurt, or looking stupid, or pushing yourself too hard, group training has you covered there too. A certified coach will demonstrate how to do all the exercises correctly at the beginning of class, provide possible modifications if you need them, and instruct you on how to make any necessary tweaks to your form throughout the workout to keep you working safely and efficiently. And when it’s time for you to push harder, they’ll encourage you to try a harder version or a heavier weight.

Variety in the workouts keeps you from getting bored.

No two workouts are exactly alike in our group training sessions. You’ll do certain exercises often enough that you’ll improve and get stronger, but there will be enough variety that you never get bored with the workouts. If you’re someone who hates doing the same workout more than once, we’ll keep you on your toes with new workouts and exercises every week.

Putting skin in the game (money) keeps you accountable.

For some people, shelling out their hard earned cash will ensure that they actually go to the classes and get their money’s worth. Simple as that. Money can be a serious motivator. Your health and fitness is a great way to invest in yourself, and the positive results carry over into other areas in your life. If it increases the likelihood that you’ll reach your goals, isn’t the investment worth it? Try it and see for yourself.

The Strength Collective Galesburg 22 WOD Fundraiser Workout

Want to learn more about our group training offerings? Check out the options here. Not sure if group training is right for you? Schedule a free fitness consultation to talk with Co-Owner and Certified Personal Trainer Jenna Fox. She’ll help determine the group that’s best for you and your goals. Call us at 309-343-2900 to schedule your appointment.

Dalton Buckman- March Member of the Month at The Strength Collective Galesburg

We have such awesome members that we wanted to tell you all about them, so we decided to start this new monthly feature so you can get to know the community that makes up The Strength Collective.

Our first ever member of the month is Dalton Buckman, a 20 year old Strongman competitor and huge supporter of The Strength Collective since we opened in July 2018. Dalton works at both Target and GNC in Galesburg. He is passionate about Strongman competition and is eager to spread his knowledge and love for strongman style training to others. One way he is doing this is by organizing an all-levels Strongman Competition in June 2019, hosted by The Strength Collective. His goal is to get both new and experienced Strongman competitors to come together to spread the word about the sport and encourage people of all ages to give it a try. Stay tuned for more information on dates and times as we will be releasing those soon!

Q: What got you started working out?
A: Lifting weights for football in high school and wanting to be stronger.

Q: How many days per week do you typically work out?
A: 3-4

Q: What’s your favorite exercise?
A: Deadlifts and Yoke Walks

Q: What’s your favorite post-workout meal or snack?
A: Steak, rice, and a protein shake

Q: What do you find most challenging about working out?
A: Using time effectively. My workouts take a big chunk of my day making time management key to my busy life.

Dalton won 2nd place at the Strongest Damn Leprechaun strongman meet on March 16th. Member Kierstin Johnson also competed and won first place in her division. Congrats!

Q: How do you stay motivated to work out consistently?
A: Competing in strongman helps constantly needing to be stronger for meets. But all in all I love spending time at the gym, it’s like a second home. Even the hard days that I feel awful there’s no other place I’d rather be.

Q: What advice do you have for someone who’s thinking about starting or just getting started in the gym?
A: Find something that interests you about working out and become obsessed with it. If you can’t find anything a positive friend that will stick by your side will take you a long way. Having like minded people around will always be a huge motivator!

Q: What fitness accomplishment are you most proud of?
A: Taking second in the Teen division at a national level meet. Also holding a national deadlift record when I was 18.

Q: Tell us a random fact about yourself that people might not know:
A: I take medication for ADD. I would say training helps me build my focus a lot and it does make school difficult sometimes but so far I’ve managed to be in honors almost every semester and will have my associates at the end of this semester.

Q: What’s your favorite thing about working out at The Strength Collective?
A: The environment is very different from anywhere else in town and I can train how I need to in order to be a national level athlete. Being able to have access to the equipment I need and being able to store my equipment at the gym has made a huge impact on my training and I couldn’t be happier!

Thank you Dalton for your support and always encouraging others!