Our Work it Out community is filled with motivating and inspiring women from all different backgrounds. We are thrilled to share with you a fabulous success story from Jen Lazor. Share your support and if you have a success to tell, we would love to hear all about it too! Email us at info@workitoutgym.com

Tell us a little about yourself:

I am a forty-one year old family law attorney, who has lived in Hoboken for about seven years. When WiO opened a few blocks away on Willow, I eyed it curiously, but was not yet ready to try it out. My experience with exercise was very sporadic and inconsistent at the time. However when I turned forty, I was beginning to loosely form some weight loss and fitness goals to usher in the new decade. I mentioned WiO to my friend, Ellen, now a fellow WiO member. She bought me a gift certificate for a class for my 40th birthday and I was instantly hooked! Over the following year or so, my casual approach to getting in shape (I thought maybe I'd lose ten pounds) acquired more focused motivation. In all, I wound up losing approximately 30 pounds! WiO has been a huge part of that. One of the biggest changes I experienced has been a consistent exercise routine that makes me feel stronger and more energetic.

What is your relationship with WiO?

Right away I felt comfortable at WiO even though my fitness level was at the bottom rung of every class. It is silly but I remember when I started at the gym, there was a bamboo scented candle in locker room, which I thought was a really nice touch. I got one for me and each time I lit it at home, it reminded me to "go to the gym," which was a motto on a pillow at WiO. These little touches were very motivational. The instructors also played a huge role in making me feel comfortable getting started. They are so good at making sure "new-bees" are doing the moves safely and effectively without bringing uncomfortable attention to us. There is just a very friendly and welcoming vibe among the members and instructors. It is not intimidating, which was an important factor to me in getting started and sticking with it.

How have you physically and mentally changed since starting at WiO?

Really the weight loss is almost incidental to the other benefits of exercise. I have so much more energy. Mentally, whenever I face a challenge, even a non-exercise related one, I tell myself: if you can do Monica's Sweata Weatha class, then this is nothing! In other words, I have a new bar for testing myself. It is very confidence-building!

What has made you stick with your WiO routine?

I have a crazy schedule at times, but WiO has classes throughout the day at very convenient times. That flexibility has been key. If I have commitments in the morning, I know I can find a class at night and vice versa. The classes are also so well led. I have taken spin classes at other gyms and felt like every second of them lasted an hour. By contrast, at WiO, spin classes are actually fun: great music, energetic instructors and different movements on the bike really make time fly. Sometimes I am even surprised when the instructor announces that it is last song. I also have to mention the Burn series, which are usually holiday or special event themed classes. The classes are good reminders to not blow your routine even though a holiday is upon us. Those are great! The web site is also a good way to keep connected even when not at WiO. I find it very motivational to read how the instructors and other members manage their routines.

Favorite WiO classes:

So difficult to say because all of the classes really are great! Monica's Sweata Weatha class really was the one that started the momentum for me. Before I took that class I had no idea how out of shape I really was! Taking the class really made it clear to me that I had to make some changes. Monica certainly makes sure you get your work out in! I also love when I can make Erika's Monday night spin. I call it the antidote to my Monday, the energy level is so great! Kara and Heather's Next Stop; Skinny classes are also regulars for me. Kara and Heather are very good about making sure your form is correct and you are getting the maximum benefit for the energy expended. The AM Mixers are also a great start to the day!

Three words of advice:

Stick with it! If I can become a regular exerciser anyone can. Really. Before WiO, I would go to a gym and spend more time in the steam room than on the treadmill! I still have far to go to improve my strength and fitness levels but the progress made within the past year or so at WiO makes me feel like I can do it.