Staying fit is a priority. The impact of physical activity on long-term health is well documented and people are taking note. With this increase in awareness has come an equal increase in fitness options. From nationwide gyms with every machine and class, to local running groups, people have more choices in how to work out.
Across the board, however, people with fitness or weight goals will tell you it is a lot easier to reach them with a personal trainer. The motivation, individualized attention, and accountability a trainer provides, however, come at a cost that most of us cannot sustain for more than a handful of sessions. Despite our best intentions, we end up back on the elliptical machine, going through the motions of “working out.”
There is, however, an alternative. 360 Fitness, located in West Olympia, combines the individualized workouts and expertise from a personal trainer with the motivation of group fitness classes to provide an amazing workout experience. And, at a cost that rivals most basic gym memberships.
Owner Jennifer Willms opened the doors to 360 Fitness in November 2012. Willms has always been active, admitting she is a recovering “gym junkie,” having at one time held memberships to several gyms at once. She decided she wanted to take her fitness to the next level and became interested in figure competitions, a form of female fitness competition focused on total form and shape, not just muscle size. After much research and extensive personal training, she began competing and has now completed 13 competitions, winning several.
Willms was itching to share what she had learned through competition and her certification as a personal trainer. She began to think about the women in her neighborhood and what she could offer to them. She began training a few out of her garage. Word spread and soon she had taken over the garage, much to her husband’s dismay, and had more potential clients than space. “I wrestled with the idea of whether it was time to just shut it down or go big,” shares Willms. “With the encouragement of my clients, I decided to go for it and 360 Fitness was born.”
The name “360 Fitness” combines a nod to our local area code as well to the image of a circle, containing 360 degrees, representing the complete turn-around you can achieve at her studio.
So what can you expect at 360 Fitness? You’ll work directly with Willms every time you come in. “I specialize in high intensity, group training. Sessions are 40-45 minutes and involve circuit training focused on functional movements – exercises that you’ll do to help you get through your daily routine.” Willms’ class sizes are limited to no more than 15 people and involve kettle bells, Olympic lifts, plyometrics (using your own body weight for strength training), battle ropes, tire flips, TRX training and more. Willms also offers nutritional counseling, a natural match to the training.
“Why people come to me varies, but most of them still call it ‘the gym.’ The difference is that I design the workout. All you have to do is show up and give it your best effort. You get what you give.”
One of the biggest differences clients see at 360 Fitness is class structure. Willms is not standing in the front instructing, as in a typical group fitness class, but instead circulating to provide individual instruction and support, ensuring all participants get the most out of their workout.
This intense style of training allows clients to get in and out of the studio in less than an hour – a huge benefit to people with tight schedules. And because of the intensity of the workout, an 45-minute session produces better results than pushing through on a cardio machine.
Beyond a good workout, the structure at 360 Fitness fosters an atmosphere of community and family. Participants support and motivate each other and it’s extremely inclusive. Clients celebrate each other’s successes and help push each other through plateaus. The positive environment is one that stays with people long after the workout is complete.
360 Fitness’s website includes a schedule of classes to fit most anyone’s needs. Along with group training, Zumba and Yoga classes, taught by a group fitness instructor, are offered at $5 and $7 a class respectively. The quality of instruction is as amazing as the low price.
And price is one reason 360 Fitness is growing so quickly. Willms is offering the equivalent of $60 an hour personal training for a fraction of the cost. 360 Fitness has no joining fees and no contracts. Willms clients come because they know she can create change in their lives and stay because they see results, not because they are locked into a contract. Clients pay based on how often they attend. For example, to attend 2 classes a week it’s $75 per month. Three a week inches up to a reasonable $90 per month. Full pricing can be found here.
Willms truly loves what she does. “I love my clients so much. I really do want the best for them and am so happy when they show up. Showing up is half the battle and if you can just get your body here, I’m going to tell you what to do and I’m going to guarantee you will finish. I promise you. And then you leave and you feel accomplished and you feel proud.”
2703 Capital Mall Drive SW, Suite 102
Olympia, WA 98502