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RF Featured Member: Kay Matthews

Kay joined Resilient Fitness as part of our specialized Balance & Power class. This class is for adults 55+ who want to gain strength and maintain balance and independence for as long as possible. Kay embodies these values; she shows up, works hard, pushes herself, and is supportive and empathetic to her fellow athletes. In addition to busting her butt in classes, Kay is very involved in the RF community and regularly participates in our educational clinics and potlucks-- sometimes she even brings one of our favorite gym dogs, BabyGirl! Kay has made tremendous strides in her balance and strength with no signs of slowing down. Her resilience is truly inspiring. Her current goal, aside from being as strong as can be, is to complete a pull up and she is well on her way! Kay, we're so proud of all your hard work and progress and we're grateful to have you as part of the RF community!


What is one thing you would say to your Coach?

Just keep on doing what you do — you are splendid!


Tell us a little about you. Where are you from? Are you a parent? What do you enjoy doing in your free time?

Born in Chicago, raised NW Indiana, lived in FL 26 years, AZ 36. No kids, but my siblings have given me 5 nephews and 2 nieces, whom I love dearly. Was married 46+ years, widowed since 2008. Mostly I enjoy reading, activities with friends, having my precious dog BabyGirl with me.


What was the moment that made you decide to join Resilient Fitness?

Nadia (my massage therapist) said RF was not like other gyms, so I met with Jesús and was impressed with his attitude about fitness being all of life, not just weight lifting.


What is your fitness/nutrition experience prior to RF?

Wasted a lot of money on gym memberships where little attention was paid once you enrolled, no instruction for safety, or how to use equipment properly. I do know nutrition pretty well, as I have tried to keep a balance of healthy foods (with a little too much emphasis on dessert, though!) Have read a fair amount on various ways of maintaining good balance in what I eat. I realize it’s not “diet” but “life-long practice” that means a decent weight and good health.


What were your fitness habits like before joining RF? Were you already active? Were you new to fitness?

Not much, for past several years. Had almost stopped even walking much, and thought I was becoming less and less able — had trouble breathing and thought my past history as a smoker had caught up with me, or my heart was bad, or whatever. Numerous tests showed no major issues other than what the docs referred to as de-conditioning.


Why do you think RF worked so well for you compared to other programs and/or diets?

As noted above, the opposite of previous experiences of gyms: personal attention, focus on what is appropriate/safe and having alternate activity if the proposed one doesn’t work for me, encouragement and no judgment. Feeling accepted and appreciated.


What was the biggest challenge or change when you first started with RF?

Getting more in touch with believing in myself as able, not just someone who is tolerated. Getting stronger physically, and improving my posture (but not fully “there” yet with this).


What has been your biggest success while attending RF?

Getting closer to my goal of being able to do pull-ups. Something I really thought was beyond my reach.


What were 3 major non-scale victories you experienced with RF?

1. Dead-lifting 85 lbs (with trap-bar). Author's Note: Kay's trap bar deadlift 1RM is actually 110lbs! :)

2. Being able to keep up with the program as we are presented with the various and increasing challenges in our class/group.

3. Keeping at it!! I’ve always just quit after a few weeks or months, due to feeling inept and not seeing any progress.


How has your life improved thanks to your time with RF?

I actually think I’m sleeping better; I’ve lost about 12 lbs. since first beginning, without focusing on intake or changing my eating habits. One of my goals was/is to lose 10 lbs. in 2023, and I’m almost halfway to that now. I’m breathing better.


What are 3 tips, based on your experience, that you’d give to new members of RF to help them see success early on?

  1. Get started! It’s true: coming in the door is the first success

  2. Be consistent with your program, whether individual or in a group/class.

  3. 3. Pay attention to your coaching; it’s key to success.


If someone is thinking about joining RF, what advice would you give them before beginning their journey?

Be convinced in your mind and heart that you deserve success, and be prepared to devote the time and money to the effort. You are your own best friend.

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