By Stephanie Van Ness, CSCS
If you've ever been in class with Patty Francis, you know two things for sure: she has strong opinions about the workout music - "You are gonna change that, right?" is always her first question if hardcore rap is playing when she enters the gym - and she can run.
"I competed in track and field in both high school and college and I was very good at it," Patty said. "I ran the 200-yard dash, the 4x110 relay and the 300-yard dash in high school and my record still stands after all these years." A standout on the track, Patty decided to turn pro after college but torn cartilage in her knee ended her dream prematurely. "I lived and breathed the sport but my body failed me and I was forced to give it up," she said. "But I still love to run and sprint when I can, and I lead a very active life."
How active? "It is very important for me to make time for fitness in my daily life because it offers peace of mind," she said. "That's why I regularly participate in kickboxing, spinning, yoga, running when I can, and of course my daily session at ARX. All my fitness activities relieve stress and keep me out of trouble."
Patty, senior executive assistant to the one of the top-level executives at Liberty Mutual Insurance, has been working out at ARX since June 2013. "I found out about ARX from a friend, completed a free trial week and have been hooked ever since," she said. "I live for this place. I'm here every night for the 6:30 pm class and on Saturday mornings immediately after my spin class. Working out at ARX has changed the way I eat and the way I work out. The weight has stayed off and I notice more muscle mass and tone."
"The fact that the workouts are so different every day has helped me tremendously," she said. "And I'm always spent at the end of the workouts, which to me is a good thing because I get bored easily and I need to sweat."
What else does Patty enjoy about ARX? "I want to give a shout-out to the great trainers here. They don't just talk the talk, they walk the walk, and that is very encouraging," she said. "One more thing I love about ARX: the camaraderie. I've been a member of several area gyms over the years but none have come close to what I've found at ARX. Everyone shoots the breeze and jokes around with each other before and after each class, which is nice. It builds a sense of community and I look forward to coming here to meet up with my fellow ARXers. Joining ARX is one of the best decisions I have ever made."