• August Program...Art of the Squat!

    It was the 4th of July and my then 16 month old niece was picking up toys off the ground and throwing them into the kiddie pool. I couldn’t help but realize the ease at which she squatted, picked up an object off the ground, and stood back up to throw it with perfect form. The funny thing is that nobody coached her through these movement patterns! As she played throughout the day she continued walk, run, squat, and play effortlessly. The below picture is reminiscent of what I saw that day and it breaks down squat perfection at its best.


    The reality is that we are meant to be mobile beings who move in dynamic ways to run, jump, dodge, crawl, and climb but our civilized Western Culture has changed the way we once lived our everyday active lifestyle by trading in the plow for the chair and desk. Unfortunately that tradeoff has come at a cost in creating chronic mobility issues and movement patterns that can not only lead to injury while exercising but can also impair your quality of life as you age. I’m sure that most of us would say that we want to live longer, happier, and more fulfilled lives. If this is the case then we must constantly practice moving more, moving properly, and reclaiming our natural function. That is why we want to focus August on one of the most basic and essential movements to live a healthy life: “The Squat.”


    Before I go any further I want to first say that from an anatomy perspective we are all created different and as a result of this our natural squatting motion will look different. Some people will squat narrow while others will find it natural to squat wider. Your hip and joint structure are hereditary so you can thank your parents for that. Previous injuries such as ankle sprains or ACL tears may alter your range of motion (ROM) as well so keep that in mind if you struggle with mobility progress.


    One thing is for certain, at WIP we squat a lot! We integrate various forms such as the air squat, weighted front squat, sumo squat, split squat, pistol squat, overhead squat along with others. The type of squat determines the form of that movement so not all squats should look exactly the same, but one thing is for certain, mobility must be present in order for you to squat properly.


    Below in the first picture there is a visual of common air squat faults along with what proper form looks like at the bottom position. You see that with correct form there is zero rounding of the spine, the entire foot is on the ground, weight is displaced on the heels, and the hips are below parallel. The second picture shows another critical element.The knees need to track over the middle of the feet and not allow caving to the inside in order to avoid knee destruction and overall form collapse.




    Now that you see what a good squat position looks like film yourself performing an air squat from a side and front angle to see how your squat stacks up.


    Lastly, I want to challenge you to spend a minimum 5-10 min each day (outside of your WIP warmup) this month improving your mobility. Most squat dysfunction shows its ugly head due to either a strength and stability issue or lack of ROM in the ankle, hip, and/or thoracic (upper) spine. Since we are discussing mobility in this post I have attached resources for each of the key ROM areas for you to implement.






    Thoracic Spine

    Choose 1-2 movements from each of the articles below and do them daily. If you do not own a foam roller you can always use one of our rollers pre or post workout to get this work in.


    Our coaches will be spending extra time this month critiquing your squat form and making sure its on point. If you have any questions regarding the squat or mobility techniques please see one of our awesome coaches. We look forward to seeing your progress this month!


    Get Low,


  • Show Your WIP Love and win $50 this August

    #WIPTRIP is back! We would love you to take us on the road with you, in the form of WIP gear or a WIP Magnet. Take a picture of you, post it on Instagram (follow us here) or Facebook (follow us here) with the hashtag #wiptrip and tag us, we are @wipfitness for Instagram and Facebook. Whether you are traveling to Italy, the Cape or staying local, take a #wiptrip picture and WIN!  Magnets are free for all clients and are at both gyms. If you are not on social media or you are marked private and would like to participate you can email your photo to We will be awarding our favorite WIPTRIP picture a $50 WIP gift card at the end of August.  #WIPTRIP

    Mary Kate and Laura

  • Please join us in welcoming Beth Morin of BAM PT and Wellness Center!

    Hello WIP Members,

    My Name is Beth Morin. I am a Physical Therapist and Massage Therapist renting space in the Avon WIP Fitness office, for BAM PT and Wellness Center, LLC. This is a cash-based business offering a different approach to Physical Therapy than a typical PT office. I have specialties in Sports, Movement and Manual Therapies.

    I have a diverse educational and work experience background. My original was  a Bachelors Degree in Therapeutic Recreation (1997-emphasis on sports and fitness for people with physical disabilities), a Second Bachelors Degree in Human Nutrition (2004), a Masters Degree in Physical Therapy (2009), I have been a Licensed Massage Therapist since (1999), as well as 8 years of various educational tracts throughout the field of Physical Therapy.

    I also have extensive training in Movement Analysis, utilizing FMS, SFMA, Y-Balance, and a variety of other jump, squat, and agility evaluations. In addition, I have attended multiple courses at the School of Osteopathic and Manipulative Medicine at Michigan State University for the past 4 years. I will use all of this education and training experiences to best evaluate and treat clients that come to the BAM PT and Wellness Center, LLC. I will be offering: Injury-Prevention, Movement Analysis/Assessment, Return-to-Sport Analysis and Therapy, Neuromuscular Therapy (for balance, posture, and stability), Dry Needling, Cupping, Kinesiology Taping (for pain reduction and neuromuscular training integration), Massage Therapy, Specific Sport Skill Training, and Corrective/Stabilizing/ and Strengthening Exercises for all levels of fitness and movement dysfunctions.

    I am very excited to work with Laura, Mary Kate and all the coaches to best serve the Members of WIP Fitness for their best performance with injury prevention, proper movement and alignment, to meet individual goals safely and effectively.

    I look forward to meeting and talking to as many of the WIP Members as I can over the next few months, to see how I can help meet the needs of the members to best benefit the Health and Wellness of the Members of WIP Fitness.



    Beth Morin, PT, LMT

    BAM PT and Wellness Center, LLC (Balance, Agility, & Movement)

    369 West Main Street

    Avon, CT 06001

    (860) 716-7620

  • Why WIPsters should practice Yoga...

    "I can't do yoga--I'm not flexible enough!"

    It's the most common excuse I hear for why someone can’t practice yoga. And it's ironic, because it's one of the main reasons someone should practice yoga. Yoga can and will make you more flexible.

    Now that we've gotten that out of the way, let me also say that yoga is for everybody. I mean it—everybody. Bring me your tight hamstrings, your inability to touch your toes, your wobbly balance, your busy mind and fidgety body. All these may lead you to believe that you aren't suited for the practice, but it's all exactly why you should try yoga. 

    Need more reasons? There are hundreds of benefits to yoga, but I'll just touch on a few, especially those pertaining to WIPsters. 

    Yoga improves your range of motion and mobility, which will help in nearly everything you do in your WIP workouts.

    Yoga helps you focus. When we hold poses, we focus our gaze and our breath, and this leads to improved concentration off the mat. 

    Yoga helps improve your balance. 

    Yoga gives you very important time and space to relax. Chances are, most of us don't get to do this enough. But whether it's the short meditation at the beginning of class or the blissful Savasana rest at the end, these moments are so vital as our lives become busier and busier. 

    Yoga really is a workout. It's so much more than just "stretching” (another common misconception I hear). It engages muscles you don't necessarily use all the time, and as we flow through poses, you can and will definitely work up a sweat. 

    Yoga relaxes the nervous system, which, among other benefits, can help with insomnia and help you sleep better overall.

    Yoga loosens and lengthens tight muscles, which is a perfect counter to your WIP training, running, or other sports. 

    So come join us on Sunday mornings at 10:30 in West Hartford! Please keep in mind that if you are attending the 9:15 am workout on Sundya you are welcome to stay for yoga free of charge.

    And if you have any concerns before your first class, feel free to reach out... I’m happy to answer any questions:

  • The Coaches Meeting Patrick

    So I am writing to tell you what went down at our Coaches Meeting a couple weeks ago, but first here’s a “little” back story.

    Back in late June, Mary Kate and Laura provided me the incredible opportunity to attend the Perform Better Fitness Conference in Providence, RI. As expected, I felt like a small fish in a big pond as I walked the hallways with many of the bigwigs in the fitness industry. It was a dream to be able to introduce myself to fitness guru, Alwyn Cosgrove, who inspired me long ago to live a fit and healthy life after reading one of his Men’s Health published books. I’m sure he’ll remember me when I see him next ;)

    Over the course of the weekend I sat through various lectures on biomechanics, workout programming philosophies, business practices, as well as a variety of hands on workout methodologies. Despite the overwhelming amount of information that still needs to be sorted out in my mind from that weekend, there happened to be one very successful individual who left the most significant impression. His name is Martin Rooney. Coach Zack told me before I left for the conference that if there is one person I MUST hear speak that weekend it would be him..and I am so glad he told me to!

    The first class I had with Martin was with about 200 other coaches in a massive conference room and I knew it was going to be interesting when he started off his class by teaching us how to properly perform a Jumping Jack. Yes, he coached us through the mechanics of a movement I’ve been doing since I left my mother’s womb. But what I realized he was doing really didn’t have anything to do with learning the science of the jumping jack, rather his point was all about connecting with us as a coach and motivating us to be successful at it. Teaching us how to break down one of the most basic exercises in the world was just the method he chose. His energy made me jazzed about doing a jumping jack and that is what it was all about. For the remainder of Martin’s class, his workout didn’t consist of any new magical exercise that cut body fat in record time or brilliant technique that chiseled sleeve ripping biceps but it happened to be the most impactful because he differentiated what a Trainer is and a Coach is. Let me share some of these with you:

    A Trainer Lights A Fire Under Someone.

    A Coach Lights A Fire Inside Of Someone.

    A Trainer Affects The Hour They Are With Someone.

    A Coach Affects The Hours They Are Not With Someone.


    A Trainer Hopes To Get Through The Session.

    The Coach Hopes To Get Through To Someone.

    A Trainer Stretches Your Legs.

    A Coach Stretches Your Limits.


    A Trainer Counts Your Reps.

    A Coach Discounts Your Excuses.


    A Trainer Wants You To Do Your Best.

    A Coach Wants You To Do Better Than Your Best.


    A Trainer Develops And Delivers Your Workout.

    A Coach Creates And Cultivates Your Purpose.

    Training Is Something You Do To Someone.

    Coaching Is Something You Do With Someone.

    Wow! If you aren't inspired to have a coach like that I’m not sure what will do it for you.

    So after a long winded explanation about my conference weekend what do you think was the main focal point of our Coaches meeting?

    Some of you might say that it was about the coaches becoming better at their jobs, and that’s partly true, but it is so much more than that. The reality is that it was all about you- our WIP community! You are the reason we are coaching in the first place. Everything we do, the decisions and improvements that we make are all for your benefit. For us it is not about punching in and punching out each day. This is not optional and does not make us content. It is coaching you to climb the rope for the first time and seeing the sense of accomplishment on your face or pushing you to get that extra burpee at the end of a killer finisher so that you become 1% better that day. Maybe it’s energizing you in the early morning to take on the day so that you can influence others or being the solace of positive energy you need after a rough day at the office.

    At WIP we are not Trainers, we are Coaches, and as your Coaches we will continue to strive to become better at who we are for your sake. We want to be great so that we can come alongside you and help you be great. This is what we aspire to be!

    I am so blessed to be surrounded by such an amazing cast of Owners and Coaches who care deeply for you. As Coaches we look forward to being a part of your future progress and success.

  • What type of gym is WIP?

    A few weeks ago I was sitting in my office, meeting with Patrick. Patrick had recently attended an industry conference in Rhode Island and had some questions for me. He asked, “What type of a gym is WIP?” When he was at the conference that was asked over and over. Are we a weight loss gym, a women’s gym, a power-lifting gym? I’ll admit I was surprised that the answer didn’t just roll off my tongue. I focused on answering what type of gym WIP is to ME, and Patrick asked me this question on the perfect day.


    I had just finished 1 of my favorite weeks of the year. Our annual week in the OBX in North Carolina. I had eaten and drank more in 1 week than I normally do in two. I didn’t exercise at all, minus some intense beach paddle ball and Kan Jam sessions. We drove home 13 consecutive hours, woke up the next morning and drove directly to Gilette Stadium to see my all time favorite band U2 and while at the concert I received a call from our contractor for our Downtown Hartford location setting up a meeting for first thing the next morning. It was not going to be a good meeting. We didn’t get home until 3 am, I couldn’t sleep, so woke up at 6:00 am and attended a very intense workout with Patrick in WeHa. I can’t remember the last time I was more physically tired since having three babies at home under the age of 4. But one hour later, I felt better than I could have imagined. I had 6 amazing workout buddies, a ridiculously talented and energetic coach and felt ready to take on not just the world but also the stresses of an over budget and way behind schedule construction project.


    The simple answer, I am not going to tell anyone what type of gym WIP is. I know what WIP is for me. WIP is a place that you can lose weight, build muscle, get toned, beat personal bests but it is also a place that you can relieve stress, forget about a nagging problem and meet friends. In many ways this explains why we have shied away from a lot of the recent fitness trends. For instance, the heart rate leaderboard craze has always turned me off, some days I am not looking to push as hard as others, some days just showing up and moving through the workout at my own pace is all I’ve got and I don’t want to compare myself to what others are doing. Some days I wear my own monitor and receive private satisfaction from kicking serious ass, but that is my choice.  Sometimes I compete in the weight loss portion of challenges and sometimes I am not there. The same reason we don’t ever force anyone joining our challenges to take before and after pictures or change their profile pictures to advertise for us. These business decisions are dictating what WIP is and I feel like that should  be up to each WIP client. And whether WIP is the best part of your day, we celebrate that as much as if you think it is the worst part of your day, we just feel so happy that you chose to spend an hour of your valuable time with us and want to help you reach realize whatever you have set out to do within our four walls, no matter what that is.


    Mary Kate

  • Lets start July out with...A RUN?!?

    Patrick, Leah, and Zack have written some great workouts for July. Read on for Patrick's details of what we will be up to this month at WIP.

    I hope you enjoyed this past month’s “Summer Fun” workout theme filled with new achievements to your roundhouse kick and shredded washboard abs :) !


    Taking advantage of this amazing summer weather we will direct our July focus on being “Runfit!” Our programming for this month will incorporate a little more running than usual to keep that heart rate high and your WIP body fit.


    Coming from a running background I have always found extreme benefit intermixing short bursts of running into my strength and conditioning  workouts to provoke a stimulus that can improve both work capacity (ability to do more work) and stoke the metabolism to burn calories for hours post workout and often times days.


    In order for you to capitalize on these benefits, you have to make the most of each short run interval and keep your intensity level very high. Yes, it will feel  uncomfortable but just remember this saying “My effort expended will determine the reward I will reap.” The same can be said for any non-running movement in our workouts as well as almost anything we aim to accomplish in life.


    I know that many of you non runners out there are thinking “Oh great, my nightmare has become reality,” but fear not, you will not be running everyday and when you do run it will be doable to the point where you might actually like it...maybe. So expect some kind of running and/or agility movements (yes I will categorize agility in the running category)  interspersed at different points throughout the week.


    So whether you end up walking, jogging, running, or sprinting always remember just how awesome you are for showing up each day and giving it your best. Commit yourself to being 1% better everyday so that one year from now you will be 365% better than you ever thought you could be.



    Be great,



  • Hartford is Coming

    We've been so anxious to share the details of our third WIP location in downtown Hartford and we are thrilled to say we are almost there.  We have been working nonstop and hope to have our doors open by the end of July and we will keep you updated on the final touches. 

    Although not all the details have been finalized, we are beyond excited to bring WIP Downtown and wanted to share some of the things we DO know for sure and answer some of your questions.

    1) We WILL have showers. The building of men's and women's bathrooms with showers explains the lengthy buildout.

    2) We WILL have early am classes, lunch session(s), and evening sessions, and plan to be open over the weekend. As with our other 2 locations, our schedule will evolve based on client demand, but we look forward to opening with a robust schedule.

    3) There is free parking on Pratt St before 8 am, and there is typically plenty available street parking on surrounding streets.  We are also working on negotitating WIP rates with a local garage.

    4) We hope to have all of your favorite WIp coaches working in our Downtown location as well as in WeHa and Avon. 

    5) WIP Downtown is located at 55 Pratt St and we are so excited to be part of the vibrant Downtown landscape and especially excited to be part of the Pratt St community.  

    We were inspired by our NEW DOWNTOWN address at 55 Pratt Street, we thought what better way to mark the location than to offer you your first month at WIP Downtown for $55. This is a presale and only the first lucky 55 people will get this great deal. This rate applies to New and Current clients but can only be used in our Downtown location. The pass will activate when you attend your first Downtown class. If you are a new client you will still be entitled to your free week trial and the pass will be activated at the end of your trial. You can purchase the pass at our online store

    We will continue to keep you posted on all updates as they come.  We continue to work hard to bring WIP workouts to Hartford within the month and look forward to working out with you soon at 55 Pratt Street!

    Hartford Has It...and we are excited to be part of it,

    Mary Kate and Laura

  • June Programming Goal... Summer Fun!

    Coming off a tough Challenge month I hope you feel as if you have experienced gains in your overall fitness, achieved the goals that you had set for yourself for the month, and ultimately created positive lifestyle habits that will continue for a lifetime.


    “So how can I possibly keep motivation and energy high after a Challenge month ends?” you say. Well you’ve come to the right place. Enter “Summer Fun.”


    The idea stems from two female owners (will remain nameless for the purposes of this story) who after morning classes one day frolicked through the gym reminiscing of their glory days and wishing there were special WIP workouts dedicated to some of their favorite 80’s movies. After the conception of their idea I was caught off guard while exiting the bathroom as one of them, whose name rhymes with  “Aurora Leever,” approached me with this life dream of theirs. She was so filled with hope and excitement I couldn’t say no. Then and there I succumbed to the inevitable- the first Karate Kid and Rocky themed WIP workout!


    If I had to describe this month in two words it would be “Variety” and “Fun.” This is what you get to look forward to and be a part of this June:


    Meathead Monday- Focus will be on strength with one “Rehab” strength day to kick off the first day. After a killer month of heavy strength workouts it will be good to take a much needed step back to deload and strengthen the body in a different way to perform stronger in the future. The following Monday will get you back into the heavy mode with a fun Partner workout.


    Tabata Tuesday- Focus is all about the highly effective Tabata interval of 20 seconds work/ 10 sec rest. ‘Nuff said.


    Washboard Wednesday- This day is all about chiseling that 6 pack and much more! The majority of the movements we focus on at WIP are full body compound movements that are always challenging for your core but this day is special in that we put a little extra focus on your Abs, Hips, and Trunk to keep your body solid, stable, and fortified. Expect to also practice your single leg balancing skills :)


    Throwback Thursday- For all those veteran WIPster’s out there, you might appreciate these the most. You will get to experience some classic movements and a finisher that you haven’t seen in awhile.


    Fun Flick Friday- The weekend is here and the time is right! This is when you get to let loose after a long week and embrace your inner Daniel-San or Rocky Balboa with a Karate Kid and Rocky themed workout. Expect a lot of punches and many butt’s to be kicked as you replay the same glory days of those two unnamed women above.


    To Summer Fun!!!


  • WIPsters...eating healthy just got easier with help from Let's Start From Scratch!

    Spring for me means 2 things....allergies and crazy schedules!!  While I seem to have my allergies in check, I just can't seem to get our crazy spring schedule under control.  Between practices, games, school concerts, science fairs and everyday life, home cooked, healthy meals have taken a back seat to Chick-fil-a.   Don't get me wrong, I love watching my three kids play sports and sing on stage, but without fail, there always seems to be at least one night a week where all three need to be at different places at the same time.  Thank goodness for carpools and thank goodness for Molly Baker at Let's Start from Scratch. 

    Lets Start From Scratch is a healthy prepared meals and catering service. Their mission is to provide convinience to delicious nutritious food with minimal cook time and clean up.  WIPsters...eating healthy just got easier for your busy lives.  

    Let's Start From Scratch is partnering with WIP Fitness to offer these delicious, healthy meals delivered conveniently to you each week right at WIP West Hartford!  Not only is Molly's food healthy and easy to reheat, it is absolutely delicious (the Thai peanut Buddha bowl with Chicken is my favorite)!

    There are 5 weekly menu options to choose from, with a minimum order of two meals per week.  Each meal is $13 per person/per meal, orders for individuals or families welcome!  Orders must be in by Friday 5pm for Monday WIP drop off* Vegetarian, gluten free, vegan options available.  All meat is antibiotic and hormone free upcharge of $4 to make the protein organic. 

    To view the weekly menu and sign up, please follow this link:

    Be sure to include WIP Pickup in Subject line and which time you would like to pick up (AM or PM - see times below). Orders must be in by Friday 5 pm for Monday pickup (minimum 2 meals per week).  

     All questions or special requests/dietary notes about food should be sent directly to Molly at

    *Molly will be at WIP West Hartford for food delivery Monday's 9:20-10:20am and 5:15-6:15pm and WIP Avon Tuesday's 9:15am (contact Molly if these times do not work in your schedule).

    Follow Let's Start From Scratch on Facebook and Instagram to see what's cooking!

    Bon Appetit!!  Laura