• 5 years of WIP!

    Today is the 5th anniversary of WIP. How can that be? Those early days seem like just yesterday and a lifetime away. It would be a lie to say that those first few months weren't incredibly stressful. Not that we don't have stressful days now but it was different in the beginning. After being open for 1 month our average DAILY attendance was 7.67 people. Today in WeHa it is 78.9. Some of you may remember those early days where 1 on 1's were common and Laura and I were at almost every class. Suprisingly, looking back at all those early sign-in sheets and thinking about the beginning I don't feel stress, quite the opposite, I can't stop smiling. Laura and I were so driven to make WIP a success that we refused to face the alternative. Laura is off this week enjoying a family vacation so it is my job to write this year's blog about our anniversary. I don't want to speak for her but I would like to think she would agree with me. Simply put, I am just so proud of us. Proud that we went for it and proud that we made it happen. I Love WIP and look forward to celebrating many many more WIPiversarys.

    To commemorate this special year we have created a T-Shirt for all The WIPsters  who have been with us from the beginning. So if you started working out at WIP in 2013 and have attended with regularity through 2018 (list below) you will be given this T-Shirt. We want to Thank every WIPster for WIPping with us and for all your loyalty. 


    Special Thanks to all our OG WIPsters:

    Kerrie Andrews

    Dave Guida

    Andrea Sweeney

    Maura Bey

    Jenn Searls

    Susan Kamin

    Allison Saulsbury

    Kathleen Wiggenhauser

    Christin Gorman

    Chris Corrigan

    Susan Schaffman

    Megan Mehr

    Maura Droney

    Chris Keever

    Karen Kane

    Monica Ahern

    Aileen Busi

    Tim Walsh

    Matt Dodd

    Kristen Bachorowski

    Liz Hanwalt

    Armena Walsh

    Laurie Lewis

    Mary Kate Doyle

    Laura Keever

    John Doyle

    Irene Rietze

    Josh Hughes

    Ann Kuhnly

    Thanks to all of you,

    Mary Kate and Laura

  • April Programming Focus-To Muscle and More

    Are You A Calorie Counting Addict??? I have to be completely honest with you, I quiver a bit when I think of the direction that many gyms are approaching fitness these days. It seems as if the current trend for a lot of places is to get as many people in the door and then beat them to death on a daily basis with brutal cardio workouts that are designed to burn as many calories as possible. Rest? What rest? You just work the entire hour for the end result of telling others that you happily burned 1,000 calories or that your name was posted on the leaderboard ahead of everyone else in the class. When all we are concerned about is how many calories we burn that day or what our fitness status is compared to those around us we miss the entire point of living a healthy lifestyle.

    I completely understand that we all have aesthetic goals in mind that we are striving for, whether it is to be summer shredded or to be able to slip into those new skinny jeans with ease, but if we stop only at that then we don’t envelop the entire fitness picture. There is so much more to being healthy and it’s not just about mere calorie burnage.

    With the above in mind I am encouraged by the survey results we received from you this month. Topping the list, one of the things you felt was most important to you as to why you come to WIP for your workouts was not to burn calories but it was to build muscle and feel strong. Many of your goals that you have posted on the chalkboards at each gym speak this similar message as well. Now this is a great goal to strive for! The benefits of building muscle (not talking about looking like a bodybuilder) and gaining usable strength not only provides ideal shape to your body image but it also fortifies the connective tissue around the joints, helps reduce the muscle loss of ageing, cuts your risk of injury, and increases bone density which is super critical to your longevity of health. The interesting thing about building lean muscle tissue is that it actually burns a good amount of calories just being at rest throughout the day.

    Now I do not want you to think that I am knocking cardio/conditioning as we do a good amount of this as well. Conditioning is very important to have great cardiovascular health, prevent certain diseases, and improve work capacity (the ability to do more work in less time with less effort) but if that is all you are primarily focusing on then you are missing the bigger picture. I believe that you need to have a good balance of strength and conditioning in order to experience the benefits of a fulfilling and healthy lifestyle.

    So with all of this said I come to my main point and that is that WIP programming is not designed to be just a calorie factory. Our coaches do not sit down and write out programs with a specific calorie number in mind that they want you to hit for each workout. Rather, we construct a variety of programs built on a foundation of functional movements that will help you build muscle, improve your conditioning, and feel great. Yes you will burn calories. Some days more than others but that doesn’t mean that one workout is more important than the other. It just means that there is a different goal and purpose in mind for the workout that day that will be beneficial to you. This means that there is no need to be holding planks during the instruction time or doing extra credit high knees during the rest break to reap the benefits of 5 more calories burned (Believe it or not, rest is your greatest friend when working out since it allows you to work harder each round... #mindblown!).

    One last thing to get off my chest and then we can move on :). Do not allow your heart rate monitors and calorie counters on your wrist or your phones to distract you from the task at hand. I catch people all the time looking at their watches and stressing out over hitting certain numbers that they often miss out on parts of the workout and/or the entire workout experience of being present and together with everyone else in the class.

    If you are one whose end goal is weight loss then it’s more important for you learn good eating habits in conjunction with a balanced fitness approach which is a sustainable method rather than just trying to rely on high calorie burning cardio workouts. (If you need help with a good nutrition plan check out the nutrition add-on to our challenge this upcoming up this month-

    Now I am not saying that we are the perfect end-all-be-all fitness system (btw there is no perfect system) but I’d say we are a pretty darn good one. Our workouts are always being fine tuned and improved to make sure you not only “enjoy” them but to also make sure they are balanced and that you are getting the benefits of both strength and conditioning each day no matter when you come. It’s just that some days will lean toward a certain focus a bit more than others. Many of the choices for the workout focus areas are a direct result of your survey responses so we definitely hear you WIP Nation! Without further adieu here is what your daily focus will be for April:

    Monday: Strength

    Tuesday: Metabolic “Tabata timing”

    Wednesday: Core and Conditioning

    Thursday: Strength Friday: 1st and 3rd

    Friday- Endurance; 2nd and 4th Friday- Partner Workout

    Saturday: Coaches Choice

    Sunday: Metabolic

    To muscle and more,


  • WIP Nutrition Shape-up Challenge

    WIP Nutrition Shape Up Challenge

    We are partnering with Shana Cerullo, Registered Dietitian Nutritionist, Dietitian of Integrative and Functional Nutrition for this year’s 5 week nutritional supplemental challenge.

    The WIP nutrition Shape up Challenge cost is $65 for Unlimited members and $70 for Non-members/punch card holders. PURCHASE HERE

    This is how it works

    The Nutrition Shape-up challenge will kick off with meetings in Canton on Sunday, April 15th at 10:30 am and in WeHa on Monday, April 16th at 7:45 pm. Attending the meetings is not a requirement but will greatly enhance your challenge experience and Shana will be raffling off  a “Healthy Kick Off Swag Bag”  for anyone doing the nutrition challenge and attends the kick off meeting.

    Shana Cerullo is a grocery store guru dietitian with a passion for inspiring people to eat well for better health. Shana can provide you with the tools you need to improve your nutrition, while making it fun, easy and delicious. Shana will help you clean up your act and provide you with no nonsense tips and tricks. Learn nutritious secrets for fast and tasty meals, how to reduce sugar and cravings once and for all, how to meal prep like a pro, learn what foods to buy and what convenience “processed foods” are actually good for you, get the skinny on healthy product approved by a dietitian, how to naturally improve your bodies metabolic and detox systems, and overall how to lose weight while maximizing the nutrients from the foods you eat.

    The first 25 people who join the nutrition challenge WILL receive a free bag of healthy goods from Shana the dietitian. As soon as you register you will receive an intake form for you to fill out and return to Shana. If you register more than 3 days prior to the Challenge kick off she will have your personalized calculations ready to return to you at the meeting. You will also be invited to the Closed Facebook Group. Wondering about all the benefits of joining the WIP Nutrition Shape-up Challenge, well here it goes:

    What Will You Get?

    -Kickoff meeting! Enter for a chance to win “The Healthy Kick Off Swag Bag”  in Weha/Hartford and Canton (includes free product, kitchen gadgets & veggies!)

    -The first 25 people to sign up WILL receive a free bag of healthy goods from Shana the dietitian.

    -Nutrition challenge run by a local Registered Dietitian Nutritionist

    -Individual calculated macronutrient and calorie breakdown

    -Individual nutrition advice

    -Facebook private page

    -Private accountability group

    -Weekly challenges

    -Endless content to keep you motivated

    -Endless easy & healthy recipes

    -Meal planning & prepping tips + tricks

    -Flavorful quick fresh cooking ideas

    -Daily dietitian selected grocery store finds

    -Endless product recommendations!

    -Real advice on how to naturally detox your body to improve metabolism

    -Build healthy sustainable habits

    -Cultivate SMART goals to get the results you want

    -Grocery store visit- healthy product highlights and meal ideas

    Shana will lead you through a 5 week program with weekly focus on the following:

    Week 1: Clean Up Your Act

    Week 2: Veggies and Volumetric's

    Week 3: Powering with Protein

    Week 4: Meal Plan Secrets for Success

    Week 5: Boosting Your Bodies Natural Detox and Metabolic System

    Can’t wait to get started, buy NOW to get your goodie bag and get a jump on the “WIP Nutrition Shape-up Challenge”

  • Why DON'T you WIP (and why you should)!

    Why Don't you WIP?

    I hear it all the time..."I'd love to go to WIP, but I have to get in shape first.", "The people at WIP are all skinny and super intimidating.",  "I just don't have the time to go to WIP.", "If I went to WIP I would die."

    Well I'm happy to tell you, all of these reasons are FALSE!  Yup...fake news.  So I'm here to debunk all these rumors and tell you why you SHOULD WIP!

    First of all, I am proud to say that in the 5 years we have been in business,  NO ONE has ever died while at WIP.  Nope, not one (and we plan to keep it that way).  Are the workouts hard?  Yes.  Will you die?  No.  

    I'm always confused when people tell me "they are working out so that they can come to WIP".  Wait, what?  Our coaches do an amazing job offering plenty of modifications of each exercise - so whether you can snatch a yellow kettle bell or have no idea what the heck I just said - our coaches will take care of you!  

    People come in all shapes and sizes (and genders and ages)  and so do WIPsters!!   99% are encouraging, welcoming, and will be routing for you (the other 1% are total badasses and only there for themselves so they won't even notice you anyway).  And remember, every single person there was a newbie at one time too.

    Did you know that WIP is open 7 days a week?  We have early classes, noon classes, evening classes and everything in between.   Do you want to workout at 5:30am?  Me either...but you COULD.  :)

    So by now you must be asking your do I start?  Well I've got some amazing news because NOW is the best time to start at WIP's CHALLENGE TIME (click here for all the details of this years challenge)!!!   5 weeks of Unlimited Classes (April 16-May 20th), community of like minded people offering support (think LOTS of other newbies), Special Challenge Only Events, PRIZES, Nutritional Shape Up, and more (all the intimate details of this years challenge will be shared later this week).  But we are excited to announce NEW this year...prior to the start of the challenge...WIP 101!  A special class designed to walk you through the flow of a WIP Class, help break down the WIP core movements, offer proper form corrections and tips, and help give WIP first timers a little sneak peak into what a WIP class really looks like.   So save the date and register online now for this special WIP Intro Class ( is limited): Tuesday April 3rd, 7:45pm in West Hartford & Thursday April 5th, 4:30pm in Canton.

    I'm glad that I could set you straight and can't wait to start WIPping it up with you soon.

    See ya at the next workout,


  • March Programming Goals! Pushing and Pulling...

    “Split” It Up WIP Style

    If you’ve spent much time in the workout world, or have an obsession with Muscle Magazine, there is a pretty good chance that you are familiar with split routines that focus on certain muscle groups while allowing other muscle groups to rest. For instance you might have one day that you work upper body while the next day is legs or you may even split up the days to focus on specific body parts (e.g. Chest/ Back/ Glutes/ Hamstrings/ Arms/ Abs). Generally, when you split up your workout up like this you tend to really tax that specific muscle group with a number of different exercises, sets, and reps in order to create a specific response be it strength, hypertrophy (muscle growth), endurance, or power, then allow it time to recover.


    A classic example of those who utilize split routines all the time are bodybuilders who isolate each muscle group and sculpt their physiques to the max. I think you can tell in the picture below who uses the split routine appropriately- haha!



    Now I am no nuclear physicist by I am guessing the reason why you come to WIP is not for a future in bodybuilding but rather for great overall fitness, health and wellness gains. Now you may be thinking that a split style routine is not for you because you enjoy some form of a full body workout each day but that doesn’t mean we can’t put more of a focus on certain muscle groups, while allowing others to recover, and still get a great full body workout.


    This month we have adapted our own WIP type of split routine where we will focus one day on pushing movements (both upper and lower body pressing, squatting, lunging variations), the next day on pulling movements (both upper and lower body pulling and hinging variations), and following day that will be a core and cardio day to keep that tummy tight and heart rate up. Saturday will continue to be a coaches choice workout and Sunday will be more of a endurance/cardio day.


    Now because not everyone attends WIP everyday we are making sure that even on your “push” days you are still getting some pull action and on your “pull” days you are getting some pushing. We will continue to focus the majority of our exercise selection on full body movements that give you the most bang-for-your-functional lifestyle-buck while including a little bit of isolation work to keep your winter pump on.


    See below for the weekly schedule:


    Sunday: Cardio/Endurance

    Monday: Push

    Tuesday: Pull

    Wednesday: Core and Cardio

    Thursday: Push

    Friday: Pull

    Saturday: Coaches Choice

    I’d love to keep writing but I’ve gotta “split.” Have fun this month and keep on keepin’ on!




  • Feb Programming Goals...Choose to be Awesome!

    Choose What You Love


    I hope that you have had a chance to fully recover from the holidays and get back on track with your life routine this past month. It’s never an easy thing to discipline yourself and make fitness a priority, so big props to you for this!  For those who came to WIP for the first time we welcome you and are excited about you joining our special WIP family. We know that the workouts are tough, but we want to encourage you to stick with it and be consistent in order for you to see continued progress and solid gains in your overall health and wellness.


    Now for the month you’ve all been secretly waiting for- a month of working out with YOUR love! And I am not talking about working out with your significant or hopeful other (although this is an added benefit). We know that some of you “heart” working on developing greater overall feats of strength while others prefer keeping the blood pumping with metabolic goodness so that is why we are giving you an option every Monday and Thursday this month to work on one or the other. You can even choose to get loco and mix the strength and metabolic movements together to get the best of both worlds.


    We believe that consistently focusing on both strength and metabolic conditioning are essential elements to a healthy fitness lifestyle. Strength obviously helps us to lift heavier objects and do challenging tasks a whole lot easier but it is so much more than that. As we age the things we begin to lose the quickest are strength, power, mobility, and bone density. By lifting heavier weights or progressing to a harder variation of a particular movement we are stressing our bodies, in a good way, to get stronger and to build healthy bones for years to come. Metabolic conditioning or cardio is beneficial for keeping our heart strong, metabolism high, and improving our work capacity (ability to do more work in less time). Working both strength and metabolic conditioning also helps to release and regulate hormones more efficiently and fight against certain diseases, not to mention the improvement of body image and quality of life.


    As we move into this month we hope you enjoy the option to choose what area of your fitness you want to improve the most. It’s your love. It’s your choice.


    Choose to be Awesome!




  • I'm going to be brutally honest...I'm the heaviest I've weighed since owning WIP.

    This may be the hardest blog post I've had to write to date, but I'm going to be brutally honest.   I am the heaviest I've weighed since we opened WIP almost 5 years ago.  I know that the number on the scale isn't necessarily telling the whole story, but I have definitely fallen off track the past year and I feel it. Even with the best workouts and coaches at my finger tips, I realize now more than ever that it takes more than just workouts to reach my goals.  But I feel it in my workouts...and I feel it in my jeans!  My diet is not consistent and I worked out less in 2017 than I have the past 4 years.  2017 was a year filled with amazing trips, memorable times with friends and family, and celebrating (and stressing) over new beginnings (hello Hartford and 40!) but it's taken it's toll.  Sometimes you need to just put it all out there, own it, and then come up with a plan to make the change.

    So here I go. Another year, another reset.  I am going to make some small commitments which I hope will put me on track to feeling my best (and I hope to see the numbers on the scale start to fall).  I've started to track my meals again and pay attention to my macros (check out this past blog post to learn how I lost 10 lbs and how I hope to again), I vow to drink more water (and a little less wine) and get more sleep.  I've also committed to getting in 5 workouts a week.  I vow to make it back into the WIP Top 20 Attendance Ranks for 2018.  What are your 2018 fitness/health goals and what are you going to do to get there?  Put it out there and hold yourself accountable...I'm trying to and would love the company!

    I'm choosing not to focus on where I am but on where I want to be...back in those skinny jeans.  We are all 'a work in progress' after all.  


  • January 2018 Programming Goals

    I hope that your holidays were full of joy and love as you were able to spend time with family and friends! I also hope that those who participated in the Challenge succeeded in their goals and got the most out of their experience at WIP this past month.


    As we enter a season where many people resolve to make health and fitness a priority in their lives it is unfortunate that most of these resolutions will not last more than a couple of months before the old ways take over and sabotage the amazing benefits of what could have been. For some people working out comes naturally to them and is more of a hobby than another dreaded chore, but for others the thought of doing something active on a daily basis is as difficult as watching reruns of Pee Wee’s Playhouse (maybe not everyone ;).


    Over the last few years a substantial amount of research has revealed different reasons as to why making resolutions hardly ever works and there are many opinions as to why this is the case.  If the standard resolution protocol has failed you in the past and you are in search of new ways to stick with your new years goals the research pros suggest that you spend your energy on creating new habits which will have a greater lasting effect. (See link for some ways to foster new habits-


    Below I have listed some ways in which I have kept the fitness habit alive in my life over the years:


    *Get it in early. The longer I wait to workout in the day the more unsettled I feel (which adds to my stress level) and the more likely I am to procrastinate and not workout. I know that this is not practical for everyone due to various schedules but if you can manage to do it you can get it out of the way and move on with the rest of your day’s priorities.


    *Set out my clothes the night before. When I was training for ultra run distances and I had a long run that I wasn’t looking forward to the next morning I would make sure that I had my run gear laid out next to my bed and coffee all set to brew so that it made it easier to get out of bed and get going. Planning things out the night before also prepped my mind for the run ahead which also kept me focused on my goal.


    *Talk to my wife about it ahead of time. Being that my wife and I share the parenting role for a one year old means that I must communicate my workout plans to her ahead of time. If I wait to tell her at the last minute there are things that often come up and get in the way of me being able to have that time to myself as well as having a frustrated spouse which is never good :(


    *Find something I want to shoot for. The great thing about working out at a place like WIP is that it cultivates a high fitness level that allows you to do other fun and cool things. I often don’t like to workout just to workout, but rather, I prefer to aim for something that my fitness lets me do or will let me do someday. It could be seeking to complete an obstacle race, compete in a Wednesday night basketball league, hike Mt. Washington, or aim to hold a handstand for a minute straight. Whatever the goal may be find something that excites and challenges you and work toward it.


    *Use the time that I have and get creative with it. The reality is that life gets in the way and you won’t always have an hour to spend at the gym. You may also be a person who travels for work frequently but your hotel gym only specializes in the Thigh Master and a Shake Weight which leaves you feeling slightly creeped out. If you only have 10 min to devote to exercise that day choose one movement and complete as many reps of it as possible. If you are pent up in your hotel room utilize a chair and your carry on bag as weight to create a mini circuit out of it. There are plenty of internet resources for hotel workouts. WIP has even created on-the-go workouts for you to do anywhere so that you are without excuse.


    Now that you have read my ramblings here is what we have in store for you this month at WIP. Each day of the week will have a different focus in order to allow you to get a variety of workouts in to keep you both interested and fit of course. The workout focus is as follows:


    Monday- Strength

    Tuesday- Metabolic

    Wednesday- Core and Cardio

    Thursday- Agility

    Friday- Endurance


    The goal is for you to work multiple fitness systems in order to 1) stay motivated and enjoy your workouts 2) keep a well rounded and balanced fitness approach. The more we vary up the focus for each specific day the better off your fitness level, athletic capacity, and skill set will be...and who doesn’t want all of those great benefits???


    As we go into 2018 I look forward to hearing about all of the great habits that you have created in order for you to live a more passionate and fulfilling life.


    Cheers to the New Year!




  • Avon location is moving!

    We are beyond thrilled to announce that WIP Avon is moving to the Shoppes at Farmington Valley!  Only a mile down the road, this new location will be Bigger & Better allowing us to offer our WIP Community even more! Grace + Grit, our favorite athleisure clothing boutique will be joining us in our new home and setting up shop in our new reception area.  We have a scheduled opening date of February 1, 2018.