From No Accountability to Consistently Exercising

From No Accountability to Consistently Exercising

Lori Zalewski - Female Client at The Perfect Workout

Lori Zalewski, 55, looked to gain strength and maintain her activity levels.

Her father-in-law recently passed away and she observed first-hand some of the challenges he went through.

“He was overweight and weak and it took many nurses to move him from the bed to a chair. I don't want that to happen to me.”

But Lori faced struggles of her own- staying consistent and accountable.

“I have tons of hand weights at home, but I just won't do it by myself.”

Lori’s sister was working with a personal trainer doing slow-motion weight training and recommended Lori give it a try too

Since her sister’s trainer was too far away, Lori did her research and found a personal training studio near her in Park Ridge, IL.

Now, she exercises with her own personal trainer at The Perfect Workout.

After staying consistent with her workouts and gaining strength all over, Lori:

  • Can move all of her camping equipment by herself
  • Can carry a full water bucket to the utility sink without spilling it
  • Can do heavy house cleaning for days on end and not feel sore.

“The Perfect Workout is worth trying if you are leery about lifting weights. You can get a good workout in without breaking a sweat in 20 minutes.”

As for how Lori feels now…

“I am stronger and feel more confident.”

If you want more information on how to incorporate slow-motion strength training into your workout routine, we have a free introductory session. If you’d like to know more about how to work with a trainer online, get a free consultation call with a Personal Trainer.

Strength Training: Exercise for ALL Ages

Strength Training for all Ages

Women sitting down after strength training session

My friend recently decided to “retire” from playing full-court basketball. Since his 43rd birthday, he’s suffered a few aches, pains, and minor injuries after each day of full-court games with younger friends. He is now going to opt for half-court games with friends, which involves much less running. “Full-court basketball is a young man’s game,” he told me. “I had to stop playing at some point.”

Full-court basketball, all-nighters, dying one’s hair pink…there are some things that we enjoy in our teens and early 20s but aren’t a good fit for adulthood. Strength training…is NOT one of those things.

Strength training is a lifelong exercise choice. It’s safe and effective, regardless of age. The goals people have for strength training generally change with age. However, the probability of reaching those goals doesn’t change. Whether 35 or 95 years old, strength training will improve your health and fitness.

A Workout For All Ages

Whether you're a busy mom looking for something quick and efficient, or a senior in need of a safe way to exercise you age, we have a program for you. While each body is unique, our principles of exercise remain the same – this allows us to serve people of all ages and abilities. Select your age range below to learn more about The Perfect Workout for you.

Before we get to talking results, let’s talk safety. Strength training, especially using The Perfect Workout’s slow-speed method, is extremely cautious. Injuries in exercise and sports are caused by an excess of force on tendons, ligaments, bones, or other tissues in the body. The lack of bouncing, jumping, and rapid movements make strength training an activity with very little force, even when a very challenging weight is used. While the exercises are challenging, they do not put an extreme level of stress on the body. 

If strength training was dangerous, the highest risk population for experiencing injuries would likely be older adults. Therefore, let’s look at the injury rate for older adults who strength train. A research article published in the journal Sports Medicine discussed the results of 22 studies with adults, 75 years old and older. Out of the 880 older adults who strength trained in these studies, only one person had a negative health experience. Just one person! The conclusion: strength training is very safe and highly unlikely to cause injury. 

Safety is important, but we also want results. Strength training leads to many health and fitness benefits. The needs and goals for strength training often differ with age. Let’s discuss what strength training offers people at the various stages in their lives.

Strength Training in Your Twenties and Thirties

Strength training provides a range of benefits for younger adults. Men and women can gain strength and muscle within two months. That muscle also enhances male and female attractiveness, according to studies on physical characteristics that men and women find appealing.

Adult athletes also benefit from strength training. Long distance times, sprint speed, and vertical jump all improve after a few months of training. In addition to performance, athletes also become more resistant to injury.

Strength Training in Your Forties and Fifties

The same athletic benefits apply to adults in their 40s and 50s. In addition to the aforementioned running benefits, men and women can improve their golf game through strength training. Three months of strength training increases driving distance by seven percent while also reducing the risk of common golf injuries (i.e. lower back pain). 

Reducing or preventing lower back pain, plus enhanced strength and muscle, are benefits for all adults in this age range. Other important benefits are preventing age-related weight gain, improving sleep quality, and reducing the risk of chronic diseases that often occur in this age range. Examples of those diseases include heart disease, many types of cancers, and type 2 diabetes.

young man strength training with dumbbell

Strength Training in Your Sixties and Afterwards

Muscles aren’t a “young man’s game.” Men and women of all ages can gain both strength and muscle. The previously mentioned research article from the journal Sports Medicine showed that just 1-3 days of strength training per week led to big improvements in strength and muscle size for adults who are 75 years old or older. Other benefits frequently experienced by those 60 years or older are stronger bones, improved balance, a lower fall risk, enhanced memory and focus, reduced blood pressure and blood glucose, and increased protection against the development of many chronic diseases.

man strength training with a dumbbell

Strength training offers a wide array of benefits, for fitness and health. While you might eventually retire from all-night parties and playing full-court basketball, there’s no need to retire from strength training. Strength training is safe and healthful exercise for life.

  • Alvarez, M., Sedano, S., Cuadrado, G., & Redondo, J.C. (2012). Effects of an 18-week strength training program on low-handicap golfers performance. Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research, 26(4), 1110-1121. 
  • Grgic, J., Garofolini, A., Orazem, J., Sabol, F., Schoenfeld, B.J., & Pedisic, Z. (2020). Effects of resistance training on muscle size and strength in very elderly adults: a systematic review and meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials. Sports Medicine, 1-17.
  • Nickols-Richardson, S. M., Miller, L. E., Wootten, D. F., Ramp, W. K., & Herbert, W. G. (2007). Concentric and eccentric isokinetic resistance training similarly increases muscular strength, fat-free soft tissue mass, and specific bone mineral measurements in young women. Osteoporosis international, 18(6), 789-796.
  • Paw, M.J., Chin, A., Van Uffelen, J.G., Riphagen, I., & Van Mechelen, W. (2008). The functional effects of physical exercise training in frail older people: a systematic review. Sports Medicine, 38(9), 781-793.
  • Sell, A., Lukazsweski, A.W., & Townsley, M. (2017). Cues of upper body strength account for most of the variance in men’s bodily attractiveness. Proceedings of the Royal Society B, 284(1869).
  • Singh, D. (1993). Adaptive significance of female physical attractiveness: role of waist-to-hip ratio. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 65(2), 293-307.
  • Winett, R.A. & Carpinelli, R.N. (2002). Potential health-related benefits of resistance training. Preventive Medicine, 33(5), 503-513.

Depressed, Overweight & In Pain. (Now Pain Free)

He was depressed, overweight & in Pain. Now, He's conquering 500 mile bike rides- pain free

Doug with his bike living life pain free

In between choir sessions, scuba excursions and 500+ mile bike rides Doug McGrath is living the life of a strong and healthy 55 year old.

But Doug wouldn’t describe it that way 3 years ago.

In the years leading up to joining The Perfect Workout, his weight had been climbing, he didn’t feel good about himself and depression had set in. He knew a change was needed and he wanted something better for himself. So, Doug decided it was time to prioritize his well-being and turned it all around.

He stepped out of his comfort zone.

Doug was aware of The Perfect Workout for years before joining, but his conception of “the gym” made him hesitant to try it.

“I had technically joined a gym a couple of times, and I only went once or twice. I didn’t feel like I knew what I was doing and I don’t like not knowing what I’m doing when there’s other people watching. I felt uncomfortable and I felt awkward.”

Doug also felt like so much of the “gymlife” was a waste of time. Driving to the gym, getting situated in the locker room, spending an hour working out and waiting for equipment, then having to drive back home takes up a lot of time.

Being able to save time by only needing to commit to two, 20-minute workouts a week would be a big factor in Doug’s decision to join The Perfect Workout. And with the studio being 5 minutes away from his home… it just made sense.

But that feeling of being uncomfortable in the gym, not knowing what to do on the machines, that awkward vibe was still an obstacle for Doug.

Male client smiling

Finally, he stepped out of his comfort zone and came in for his Introductory Session where all of his worries were put to rest. The intimate environment and 1-on-1 coaching made it apparent that he never had to worry about other people watching him exercise, how to set up a machine or do any exercise correctly, and would always get guidance and coaching from his Trainer.

“When I snapped out of it, I decided I wanted to build something better, so I joined and LOVE it. It’s been fantastic. It’s been a perfect program for me.”

He saw and felt changes almost immediately.

Unlike many new clients, Doug had heard of slow-motion strength training before. And although the concept made sense to him, his results were what solidified his belief in the method.

“I could see differences after four workouts. I could see body changes in just 2 weeks. And other people noticed within 6.”

He was seeing and feeling BIG differences within 4-5 months, including improvements to injuries he had dealt with for decades.

“I have knee problems and their ability to work around that and still give me a good workout is phenomenal.”

30 years ago, Doug slipped on the ice while living in Kansas and had torn his rotator cuff. It has been a limiting factor even with light weights. His trainers have reworked his program to be able to perform the exercises to get his shoulder stronger.

“We spent a lot of time focusing on that and that’s made a big, big difference. It’s healthier for me too, because I’m not at risk of hurting myself.”

With his Trainer’s ability to tailor the workout to Doug’s needs, customize it, and personalize it as much as possible, he’s been able to put on a significant amount of muscle.

MAle client results from slow motion weight training

he conquered the hill that he struggled to climb 15 years earlier.

It’s been about 15 years since Doug completed his first AIDS Life Cycle, which is a 545 mile bike ride from San Francisco to Los Angeles. The training he did to prepare for that first ride was the only time in his life where he had a regular training regimen.

When he joined The Perfect Workout, one of his goals was to complete that same ride again.

Doug had a little over a year of slow-motion strength training under his belt when he tackled the 500+ mile bike ride again.

How did his performance differ from his first ride, 15 years younger?

“Having the extra strength in my legs really made a big difference. The hills were so much easier!

On day three of the ride, there’s a big hill called “Quad Buster” and everybody talks about it because it basically goes straight up for a mile and a half. Most hills flatten out a little bit and you have a break. This one does not, it just goes up. I was 40 [years old] the first time. I probably stopped every 15 feet to catch my breath, it’s that hard. This time around, I stopped twice in the entire hill.”

What made the difference?

Two, 20-minute strength training sessions a week.

Male client being active

he was noticing strength improvements everywhere.

Another one of Doug’s passions is scuba diving which can be very physically taxing.

The diving itself isn’t the challenge, but the steps leading up to the dive and after the dive are.

Scuba divers are loaded up with heavy wetsuits, awkward flippers, weighted belts and tanks as heavy as 35 lbs. When you’re on a boat, the boat is rocking, even when it’s anchored which makes balancing a task in itself, especially getting across the boat and into the water.

According to Doug, just to get across the boat and into the water is hard. Then after you’ve been diving for 45 minutes or an hour, you have to climb back on the boat, climb up the ladder and onto the boat with all the extra weight attached to your body.

On a recent trip to the Maldives, Doug noticed that the entire process was much easier for him.

“It’s a lot easier to pick up the tanks and get on and off and stand up, sit down. My balance was much better. I had more strength for it. I even think my oxygen or air consumption is better than it used to be because I always burn through air.”

The future suddenly looked promising.

Getting stronger and seeing physical improvements so quickly was exciting but a change that Doug unexpectedly felt one day, left him speechless.

“I had lived with low back pain for decades. It’s just kind of always there. One day about 3-4 months after starting the program, I was just standing outside with friends talking, and I realized that my back didn’t hurt. I started thinking and I realized it hadn’t hurt all week. I almost fell apart.

That’s a big deal not living with that pain. It’s always been there on a low level and not having it is phenomenal.”

Most of us enter a workout program or start a regimen with the hopes and expectations it will give us bigger muscles, leaner waists or more energy, but this– this was life-changing. After living with pain for so long, it's so easy to accept it as being normal and something you have to live with forever.

And for most people, that doesn’t need to be the prognosis. Slow-motion strength training has the power to improve so much of our physical health and alleviating chronic pain is one of those benefits.

Doug had visions of his 70-80 year old self hobbling around with a bad back. He felt like his back pain was only going to get worse as he aged. It had been on his mind since he was in his twenties.

30+ years of worrying about his senior years was resolved in a matter of months by strength training.


“Before I started the program, I would look in the mirror and I could see myself old. Honestly, I felt like I looked old at the time, or much older than I actually was and I just didn’t like what I saw. This is BIG.”

he's sticking to this new lifestyle no matter what.

Doug hasn’t been doing any scuba diving lately as we’ve all been quarantined at home, but he’s committed to staying strong by doing virtual training.

“I was skeptical. I was really like, ‘I don’t know how this is going to work.’ And I don’t have equipment here at home.”

If you’ve read about any of the other incredible clients we’ve featured lately, you know that having no equipment is no problem! Luckily Doug did have some of his scuba weights lying around, so Jeffrey (his trainer) and he put them to good use!

He’s found that adding 10lbs to a wine tote easily doubles as a dumbbell… and it works. Between that and using his body weight for exercises, he feels like the workouts are just as hard as in the studio and he’s improving his balance in the process.

“I’ve gotten used to [the difficulty] now. The fact that I’m getting used to it shows that I’m building my body in ways that I wasn’t before. I’m really impressed at how well it works and how much you can do with chairs and scuba weights in wine bags.”

he found his sanctuary.

“The rest of the world disappears when I go in to do the workout. Nothing else matters.”

We receive so much more than the physical benefits of a workout. It is an emotional and psychological experience… a truly positive experience walking out of a strength training session.

“Even though I’m exhausted, I feel good. I feel like I’ve accomplished something.”

Before The Perfect Workout Doug would describe himself as feeling “bleh.” His weight had been climbing for 4 or 5 years and none of it was muscle. His back was hurting chronically and the clothes he had been wearing for years didn’t fit anymore. He just didn’t feel good.

“I feel better about myself, about how I look, about how I feel.

Being a single, gay man at this age, there’s a feeling that nobody’s going to notice you. Definitely, people are noticing. So that’s been a big boost in my self-esteem. It’s definitely been worth every minute.”

More Results in 1 Month, Than 6 Months At a Gym!

i got more results in 1 month than i did working with a personal trainer for 6 months at my former club!

female client at the perfect workout smiling

Michele Rosenbloom, 51, has lost 15 lbs. and 3 dress sizes and says, “I used to come home exhausted (after work), but now, I still have energy after a 10-12 hour day.”

When Michele Rosenbloom went to Hawaii last March, she wanted to cry. Even though she had been working out, she didn't feel good about herself. As she put it, she had saggy “chicken arms” and her legs were “jiggly” all the time. “At age 51, I shouldn't feel embarrassed. I was worried that I'd end up wearing old lady ‘fat' clothes!”

By August, Michele had had enough. Another upcoming trip to Hawaii to celebrate her 28th wedding anniversary made her realize that she needed to do something this time. She saw an ad for The Perfect Workout in the paper and thought, “Yeah, right!” Like most people, she figured she needed to spend hours in the gym to look good. Skeptical, Michele looked it up online and got more information. It sounded good, but she still put it off. Finally, her girlfriend who lived next door said, “We need to do this,” and they went in together.

Michele was amazed with the results! “I had a personal trainer a year ago at another fitness center, and in the first month working out at The Perfect Workout I got more results than I did in six months with the other trainer. Within the first month, I saw huge changes in my body! After two months, I had already lost 11 inches and gone down three pant sizes, and I have more energy than before. I used to hate working out, but I haven't missed a session yet.”

All that made for an incredible anniversary trip to Hawaii recently. “This time, I felt great!” says Michele. “Overall, my whole body looks and feels different. I used to ‘jiggle', and I don't have that anymore. Now I have definition.”

Slow-motion strength training at The Perfect Workout has changed Michele's body, it's changed her eating habits, and it's even changed her attitude. “I feel very good about my body now. Overall, I look happier. My whole being is happier, and it overflows all areas of my life. My three kids are so proud of me, and my husband is, too. He called me ‘slim' the other day, and he hasn't said that in years!”

She's come a long way in a short time since that first trip to Hawaii back in March. All from her quick, intense, 20-minute workouts every Monday and Thursday. “I love the program, and I love the people. You can have the body you want to have, at any age, without spending six hours a week in the gym! I think everyone should experience The Perfect Workout.”