Viewing entries in
Be Awesome

Endless opportunities for improving my skills to incorporate in all aspects of my life.

I was initially intimidated to try GSC because I was nervous I would feel uncomfortable as a newcomer, and that I wouldn’t have the ability to keep up. I am so glad I decided to give it a try in spite of my reservations, since I was completely wrong. I immediately felt welcomed by the warm and supportive group of people. Much like in group sessions, there are always modifications to meet each person where they are with each skill, so I can go at my own pace.

Going to GSC is now a highlight of my week. I like to take with me what I have learned into my week and put it to good use, whether that be in a group session, moving my spine while sitting at my desk, or practicing my ankle mobility while waiting in traffic. I am so excited about the endless opportunities for improving my skills to incorporate in all aspects of my life.


“More spring in my step, power in pedals, and a stronger brace on the yoga mat!”

“More spring in my step, power in pedals, and a stronger brace on the yoga mat!”

I started on my path with Gymnasia when my partner gifted me a pack of private coaching sessions (best gift, ever!). We had heard wonderful things about Josh and his team from friends in the yoga community, and my experience continues to exceed every expectation. As a physical therapist, I value the G philosophy of training patterns, rather than parts. The movement curriculum and functional approach to strengthening yield gains that apply well beyond the walls of Gymnasia. I’ve noticed more spring in my step, increased power in my pedal stroke, and a stronger brace through my core on the yoga mat.

Impressed by my own results and fueled by a thirst for knowledge, I jumped at the opportunity to participate in the Coach Training. The weekly sessions enabled me to learn fundamental movement patterns and integrate their variants through practice. I also built confidence in my ability to scale up and down the intensity and complexity continuums. The format of the training provided a balance of discussion and live practice that deepened my appreciation for fitness as a path best walked as a shared experience within the walls of sacred space.

No matter what your starting point may be, Gymnasia can provide an on ramp to a more inspired life.

~Alecia D, PT

“Ability I couldn’t even imagine & I’ve lost almost 20 pounds without dieting!”

I joined Gymnasia a few days shy of a significant birthday. I was overweight, over-stressed, out-of-shape and frankly, out-of-sorts about it all. I had been a runner and swimmer in my young adult days, but it had been years since I had been able to keep up with any regular exercise program. My knees ached, my confidence was low, and I struggled to find clothes I felt good in. I was eager to get in shape, but anxious about how the training would feel.

I started attending small groups three times a week, and within a short time, realized I didn’t have to force myself to go, but actually looked forward to each session. The movements were so new to me, and interesting in a way that challenged both my mind and body, and Josh and the other coaches were welcoming, and adept at explaining the various moves. Hard to believe – but I was actually having fun!

The other members I trained with were also very friendly and supportive; it quickly became apparent that this was a special community, in which coaches and teammates helped support and encourage each member.

It also helped that I felt so invigorated and just so damn good after the sessions. I was tired and even sore, for sure (thank you, push-ups and squats!) – but in a good way, like my body was waking up and being glad of it after too many years of relative inactivity.

And the compliments were pretty nice too. Though I wasn’t really dieting, the effects of the strength and movement training made me look slimmer and more fit and family and friends were noticing. I finally had to shop for new clothing in smaller sizes – for the first time in years!

Gymnasia Head Coach Josh Conway has created an amazing program and philosophy, with deep roots in both western and eastern disciplines. He is friendly, and approachable and has an impressive knowledge of the body, and of exercise, strength and movement patterns. He and his coaching team will meet you where you’re at – whether you’re a couch potato or competitive athlete – and thoughtfully coach you to make progress at your own level.

I am SO happy with my experience training at Gymnasia – it has been a real life-changer for meI have gained strength and ability I didn’t even imagine (I can deadlift, swing and snatch kettlebells, and do push-ups for the first time in my life!). I also have lost almost 20 pounds without really dieting.

Stairs are easier, my gait feels more fluid, and my knees are much less achy. More importantly, I am now more comfortable and confident in my body than I have been in years, maybe even decades.

It’s been just over a year since I joined, and I am thrilled to say that I am in the best shape of my life – not bad for having just turned 61! Thank you G coaches – you’re the best!

~ Mary Grace S

“I can do some mean pushups for the first time in my life!”

“My daughter and I joined Gymnasia at two different levels of fitness and experience.  She is a trained dancer and was looking to gain strength and a workout that would push her to a new fitness level and extend her athletic abilities.  I, on the other hand, was a gym drop-out and was looking for a program I would stick with and possibly even enjoy.  When we met with Josh the two of us both knew right away that this was something unique.  Surprisingly, we both left confident that this program would meet both of our very different goals.

Josh and all the coaches at Gymnasia are so knowledgeable and really push you to challenge yourself.  My daughter and I are amazed at the strides we have made, not only in our fitness but we see the results of our hard work in our every day lives. She is a stronger, more athletic dancer and I can do some mean pushups for the first time in my life!

While we started this program with the intentions of working out together, the Gymnasia community has made it easy for us to attend on our own, knowing there is always a friendly face to cheer you on and push you forward.

At other gyms I never really made any forward strides and I would quickly become frustrated and bored.  3 days a week at the Gymnasia has provided us with real tangible results that finally have me excited about exercise.  We are both so happy we joined.

~ Sheila (& Anna)

“…a confidence about my body that I’ve never had before.”

“…a confidence about my body that I’ve never had before.”

Gymnasia is a delight in the universe of exercise and fitness. At 44, I was fit and healthy but bored with how I was exercising. Whatever I did, however healthy and challenging, felt one-dimensional in terms of overall fitness. At the suggestion of a friend I visited Gymnasia and have been going regularly ever since — I am officially 45 now.

I used Gymnasia to prepare for a 4-day hike to Yosemite to climb Half Dome. The work at Gymnasia prepared me for all the physical and mental challenges I encountered on the trip–and there were many. Most importantly, Gymnasia instilled a confidence in me about my body that I have never had before. In a strictly physical sense, I feel like I can accomplish what I want to and do it with grace, joy and without injury. This is something I had on the top of Half Dome and will continue to have. The Yosemite trip was a clear goal that Gymnasia helped me achieve. In addition I have found these little surprises in my day to day life that I continue to be delighted by:

  • I can throw the ball twice as far for my dog.
  • I can replace the Poland Spring water jug without pulling a muscle.
  • I can open any sized jar before 10am without assistance.
  • I can pick up my extra large cast iron skillet (when it’s full) with one hand now.

You will not find your traditional weights and benches. Instead, you leave your shoes at the door and use your body in unique and fun ways. There are jump ropes, kettlebells, bags of sand, huge ropes, and more. I cannot recommend Gymnasia highly enough.”  ~ Eliza


"I found myself in the best shape of my life, but what really made me really love Gymnasia was after I had my son."

I had recently moved to the area and was looking for a new gym when I stumbled upon Gymnasia. After countless experiences with different classes, trainers, and instructors I could tell that Josh knew what he was talking about and was thoughtful about what they were doing there and I appreciated that. And so, Gymnasia became a regular part of my routine.

The sessions were fun and interesting, I shed a few pounds, and somewhere along the way I found myself in the best shape of my life. So that was all pretty cool and was definitely enough to keep me hooked. But, what really made me really love Gymnasia was my experience with some time off after I had my son. Something about going through the physical experience of being pregnant and having a child -- my body changing and me thinking am I ever going to be that fit person I was before? After only a little time back at Gymnasia I realized the answer was yes. Sure my body has changed, but I actually think that I may be stronger now than I was before and that gives me so much pride.

And I'm truly not sure I could have gotten that somewhere else. Sure I may have lost some baby weight, but Gymnasia gave me the tools and the movement to find the strength and power that I want for my body and I know will sustain me through whatever future changes and challenges may come my way.

~Lucia C


Allison's 60 Day Transformation


Allison's 60 Day Transformation

“Where I was at when I joined Gymnasia: I had started working as an organic farmer again, I had just been through a rough breakup, I was 20 pounds heavier after a winter bakery job, and I had gotten into the habit of drinking every day after work. I didn’t feel good at all and I knew it was time to rid myself of the bad habits and bad thoughts that were weighing me down.

When I resolved to change my food and fitness habits I found Gymnasia, jumped right in, and started the 60-day Clean Eating Challenge. My experiences as a farmer had taught me a lot about food and healthy eating, but I wasn’t really ‘walking the walk’. Even though I had an unlimited supply of vegetables, I was only really eating them around dinnertime. My breakfast and lunches tended to be full of sweet treats– I was relying on sugar rushes to get me through my day, and I would feel really crashed (and frankly, pissy) by the end of it. I decided it was time to get more connected to my food and body.

The plan helped me create a diet for myself based on fruits, vegetables, seeds, nuts/nut butters, eggs, fish, and occasional meat.  I quit eating processed foods and added sugars (including alcohol). I held myself accountable, tracked my progress, and told all of my friends about my decision. By eating more of my own vegetables I became a testament to the healing power of fresh, local produce. I grew the vegetables, and the vegetables grew me. I trained 3 days a week at Gymnasia throughout.

After 2 months: I can do 6 pull-ups. (I couldn’t do one before). I weigh 15 pounds less. I fit into my little sister’s jeans, I can lift more than my guy friends, and I have way more energy all day. I am more in control of my eating habits, more powerful, and more at peace with myself than ever before. I actually enjoy eating. I don’t feel anxious or guilty about food. I feel so free.

The 60 Day Challenge was the catalyst that helped me get myself in balance. By deliberately challenging my mental and physical self at Gymnasia, I am more prepared to deal with the physical and emotional stresses at my job. The repetitive motions, heavy lifting, kneeling, and long hours of standing don’t seem as hard anymore.

Gymnasia taught me this: Don’t underestimate yourself. Set intentions, take baby steps, breathe, love your body as it is, and move in ways that bring you joy. Nourish yourself, don’t starve yourself, and learn to forgive yourself. Embrace your power and nurture your unique God-given abilities. It feels good.

It’s an incredible fitness community that meets you wherever you’re at, and I am so thankful to have found it.

~Alison D



“My goodnesss, the skiing! I am ripping harder and skiing longer than I ever have”

I just realized my 60 days has ended. I can’t believe how fast that went! Because my challenge period has passed I thought I should reaffirm how incredibly positive the experience has been.

My goals were to rebuild my capacity for resilience, so minor injuries would go away, and not upset my whole body, to improve my skiing by rebuilding all the strength I let fade away, and to safely get back to running 25-30 miles a week with better fluidity and flexibility. When I have dealt with mother nature to run, that is exactly how I feel. The distance is TDB but I am sure it will fall in place as it gets nicer out.

The skiing—my goodnesss the skiing. I am ripping harder and skiing longer than I ever have. My form has improved as a function of my strength and flexibility. I am driving my skis with my core and getting my skis WAYY out from under me on each turn because my hips let me do that now. I translate every movement we do to the mountain. My amazement—”did the have skiing exclusively in mind?” I wonder—is really a deep appreciation of how universal the movements we train are. I can’t wait to my next set of surprises when I start sailing.

~ Matthew C


“Dr. Meigs: From the mountain to the trauma ward, and back again!”


“Dr. Meigs: From the mountain to the trauma ward, and back again!”

“I am a 55-year-old physician who enjoys Nordic and downhill telemark skiing, mountain hiking, jogging, sea kayaking, golf and mountain and road biking. In July 2013, I crashed while mountain biking and broke several thoracic vertebrae, a lot of ribs, my sternum and my helmet. That hurt! After 2 months of bed rest while the bones healed I was very weak, having lost all fitness and strength, with quite a bit of residual upper back pain. It was a chore to climb the stairs at home. I needed a training program to regain core strength and overall fitness and resume the movements of daily living. The program needed to be sensitive to my healing injuries as well as some pre-existing wrist and shoulder arthritis.

Looking around the web for a personal trainer, I came across Gymnasia. I stopped by and spoke with Josh. His view on whole body movement and strength and the possibility for small group training made sense for me. After just a month of three times per week, my results are outstanding. My strength has rapidly returned, and each session it seems I can move a little more weight and go through movements with greater limberness. My back and chest pain have rapidly diminished as my strength has grown. Even my chronically aching wrist and shoulder feel a lot better. They don’t like every exercise much, but chronic arthritis pain is notably reduced. Gymnasia’s coaches and the small group atmosphere have been supportive and fun.

I have rebuilt a lot of my strength, power, and stamina and become more limber–with less body pain–far faster than anyone thought was possible given my injuries. I recommend Gymnasia’s approach to better fitness and recovery without any hesitation. Their claim is true: Gymnasia is a great path to useful strength, conditioning, mobility & ability. I have indeed had a complete fitness transformation. The strength, balance and mobility I have gained are obviously great for cross-training in the sports I love to do.

[Post 90 Day update!]

I just returned from five days of telemark skiing at Alta ski area in Utah. I skied with a group of friends from college, all great skiers, most of whom were riding standard alpine skis. We skied steep double black diamond trees, chutes and faces all day every day in the famous Utah powder snow. Alta skiing involves a lot of long climbing and dropping traverses and straight-up climbs on and off skis. There are a lot of ‘no fall’ situations. To keep up with alpine skiers on telemark gear requires speed, endurance, balance, and a lot of deep knee bends. A good deep tuck held for a minute or two is handy to catch and pass the alpine guys. And all this done at 10,000 feet of altitude.

I am here to testify the Gymnasia approach to fitness prepared me for this ski trip better than any other fitness approach I have ever tried, which usually was just biking, running and Nordic skate skiing. At the end of every day I was tired, sure, but not sore, and still not sore the next morning of every day. My endurance and recovery were remarkable. As I skied, all I could think of was how well the training served me. The focus at Gymnasia on building core strength also really helped my balance in the bumps, steeps and at speed. I was just amazed and overjoyed at how effective three days a week, week after week at Gymnasia, prepared me for this physical challenge. In my day job as a primary care doctor I spend a lot of time encouraging people to move their bodies. My experience is great testimony that the Gymnasia approach to movement and fitness will help a body recover from injury, improve strength ad ability for activities of daily living, and improve strength, balance and endurance for the sports we love to do. Thanks Gymnasia!

~Dr. James M