Transformation Thursday: Peggy Barresi

Here at Studio Poise we know that health isn't just what you're doing, it's also what you're feeding your body and your soul. This week's Transformation Thursday comes from one of our newest members of the #poisenation family and an effervescent ray of sunshine, Peggy Barresi. We think every woman reading this will be able to relate to the vicious dieting cycle Peggy endured in her quest to find good health. We're so grateful she found Studio Poise and 6w2c and we look forward to her continued presence at the studio!

I‘ve dieted all my life, pretty much since the age of 15, when I weighed a scanty 110 pounds.  (Give me a break. I wish I were as fat now as I thought I was then!) Weight Watchers, South Beach, Grapefruit, Flight Attendant, Atkins, Jenny Craig, and tens of others – tried them all, lost the weight, gained it back, tried a new one. Lather, rinse, repeat.

And forget about exercise. I’d been an active kid, taking a plethora of dance classes and adding cheerleading in high school. But I wasn’t athletic. I stunk at sports, particularly those involving eye-hand coordination, and once in college, I really began to lead a sedentary life. I’d join gyms, go to a few classes and maybe get on the treadmill twice, my $300 yearly donation to some corporation.

I just wasn’t one of those people who like to exercise. In fact, I hated it. It hurt, made me short of breath, and made me look like a sweaty tomato. Then it hurt more again later. But 15 years after the birth of my first child, I knew if I wanted to get serious about losing the “baby weight” I’d have to get fit. ;)

I began to work out with a personal trainer. Success! I exercised three times a week for a strenuous hour and became fitter than I’d ever been. I didn’t love it, but the results kept me motivated. Then I started to bulk up, as my trainer pushed me to lift heavier weights and do ridiculously difficult exercises. I just wanted a fit body, not to qualify for the Olympics. I began to hate going and eventually stopped altogether. 

This past summer a friend convinced me to buy a 10-class Groupon to Studio Poise, but I always had an excuse for not going. Other than taking the sporadic yoga class, I hadn’t exercised in four years. Then, two days before my 55th birthday, I got an email promoting SP’s Six Weeks to Chic (6w2c) program. I liked the sound of it, and knowing I needed a jump-start, I signed up as a birthday gift to myself. I loved when Danielle told us, “Put your scales away. I don’t want you weighing yourself.” She said the program was about being healthy and feeling better, and that a number on a scale is not necessarily indicative of success. Something about Danielle’s positive attitude left me thinking this would be a successful program for me. I’d just met her, but I didn’t want to disappoint her!

I religiously attended my 5 classes per week, followed the nutrition guidelines, and drank a gallon of water a day. I tried almost every class at SP, and one was more fun that the next. The energetic instructors, the welcoming students, the fun touches, and Danielle all kept me eagerly coming back. After I took my first Pound class, I told my friends that if the universe asked me to create a fitness class, I would have created Pound. Banging drumsticks to music? Yes, please.

After two weeks, I posted the following on the 6w2c Facebook page:

1. I feel great

2. I am in a good mood 90% of the time

3. I am definitely stronger

4. I am holding myself taller

6. My skin feels amazing from all the hydration

7. After a day of rest, I woke up today actually wanting to move

8. I am rarely hungry

9. There's a lot more laundry to do

The program is now over, and I lost several inches throughout my body, three in my hips alone. But what I gained is what’s really important. In addition to all the above, I’ve found the joy in exercise. For the first time in my life, I look forward to working out. Thank you Studio Poise for this priceless gift. This 55 year-old has found her sparkle.