Beth, by Oly

20 June, 2017

I want to offer my sincerest gratitude for the opportunity to be a part of the Island Fitness family. Island Fitness opened a fountain of love, joy, community, and wellness that I have not experienced elsewhere or at any other time.

In particular, I would like to recognize the role Beth Cook had in making my experience remarkable here. I have been in the fitness industry for over 20 years now, and I must say that Beth Cook is hands down the best supervisor I have ever had. As a leader, she elevates the delicate balance of compassion and effectiveness to an art form. And she does it all with a smile that lights up any room.  It is because of the work environment she created for me, that she gained my fierce loyalty and investment in Island Fitness.

I hope to return in three years. And I hope that I will have the opportunity to rejoin the Island Fitness community.

Incredible staff and community involvement. By Anne S.

30 March, 2017

Island Fitness has an incredible line up of staff, who pride themselves on helping the individual meet their fitness and lifestyle goals. I've enjoyed being a member for the last decade, attending many of the diverse group fitness classes that are included in the membership; participating in small groups; and working one-on-one with highly-trained cutting edge trainers, who are clearly experts in their field! And, their commitment continues beyond the walls of the gym, as they practice what they preach by their ongoing involvement to the community! I feel welcomed each time I come in the door, and leave happy I attended to my health that day.

~ Anne Duggan Smith

The Best Place to Work out. By Ed Z.

17 March, 2017

Ed with Zumba Intructor Oly GallgherThe great staff at IF makes it the best place on Bainbridge to work out. I especially like the group fitness classes and the great instructors. Nice space and equipment. ~ Ed Z.

Dear Island Fitness. By Leona S.

01 March, 2017

On January 2nd, while at Island Fitness, I suffered a cerebellar stroke.  I didn’t know it at the time because I had no paralysis, speech or visual impairment -- what I thought of as “typical” stroke symptoms.  I experienced extreme dizziness, nausea and an inability to walk – all affecting my balance controlled by the cerebellum.  Thankful for the kindness of Oly Gallagher (Zumba instructor), Douglas (front desk) and Barbara and Suzanne from the Zumba class, and the quick response by Carol O’Neill, paramedics were called and I was eventually taken to Harrison Hospital.  Within two days, I was transferred to Swedish Medical Rehab Facility and sent home on Sunday, January 8th.  The physical and occupational therapists were amazed at my progress and saw no reason to keep me any longer.  

I, as well as the therapists, attribute my extraordinarily quick recovery to Loretta Stanton, my personal trainer at Island Fitness.  For years, she has focused on, and emphasized, the importance of balance in our training sessions especially as I’ve gotten older (now 65).  In less than two days, I was able to walk unassisted.  If you saw me, you’d never know I had a stroke just a few weeks ago.  I am forever grateful to Island Fitness and, particularly, Loretta, for her dedication, knowledge and commitment to the health and well-being of her clients.  


Leona Salazar

Working Out Together

06 February, 2017

“To have workout partners helps me stay motivated and accountable to actually be there. We support each other and (sometimes) suffer through the pain together and we feel great in the end.”

Blue Zone Interview by Jennifer Manlowe

30 December, 2016

After meeting with TRX aficionados Debbie, Pam, Jeannie and another member who chose not to be named (new member), I learned there are several reasons people who join a gym might fail but people who join others in their pursuit of fitness have a better chance of success.

Lots of us are introverts, in the Northwest especially, and we sit most of our days or run around doing errands and then squeeze in a workout before or after our day’s work. This solitary gym visit may be ideal for an ever-changing schedule but for others — even introverts — working in groups, with a trainer or even a gym buddy can bring greater success and satisfaction.

In order to gather information on their experience of working out at Island Fitness, I met with TRX class members Jeannie, Pam, Debbie and New Member to ask them two questions before class started: 1) Why did you join the gym? and 2) What have you found helps by working in a group?

As to the first question, why they joined the gym, all answered in their own way but the answers were basically the same, “I want to get fit/healthy or keep fit/healthy.”

When I asked each one what they like best about working in a group, the answer was unique but had running themes of "I need to be challenged and motivated” or “On my own, I’m toast.”

One member came to the class "to prepare for surgery and heal quickly afterward." She decided to stay in the class and says she "feels great about the results in body, mind and spirit.”

Another member said, "Being in this group gives me support, motivation, and I have fun. Too, I feel cared for and I’ve come to care about others here.” In interviewing the, I learned that "if someone misses more than one class, one of the others will check up on them to make sure they're okay."

One woman said she "always performs best with teams" and this has been true for years. She said, “I had to stay in shape as a high school and college athlete." Then said, “Now that I’m 62, I challenge myself for myself, not to run another marathon!” This same member said, “I’m not a group person per se but I am inspired to give it my all in groups.”

Everyone agreed the TRX instructor, "Loretta is a master." They said, “Working with her is awesome!” One said, “She motivates us and, like a really good Pilates instructor, knows each little movement to suggest to prevent injury and give us the maximum benefit of the move.”

Another said, “Even watching another person in class helps me do the move correctly.” A few members agreed, "Working in groups makes a difference and I never workout alone anymore.” Another said, “Though this is a really tough workout that pushes me farther than I’d push myself, in the long run, it’s much easier because I’m not alone.”

All in all, working out in groups as men and women doesn’t make the work less painful but it seems to make the work feel less like work. And, as we can see from this TRX group, when we support and inspire each other, everybody wins.

Authored by Creative Consultant and Clarity Coach, Dr. Jennifer Manlowe with EmboldenU.com.

Brenda, by Ann C

15 December, 2016

For approximately two years I have been working with Brenda Prickett, and I’s like you to know she’s fantastic! For one thing, she’s gone to no ends to help me get stronger and deal with assorted back and leg problems. Early on she studied spinal stenosis, then tailored the exercises we do to help my situation. She has studied the results of a recent MRI done on my back and went with me to talk with my physical therapist and to get his advice on where we should go from here. She is amazing and I wanted you to know she is the best!

Carol O'Neill and Renae McCloud by Judy R.

25 November, 2016

Heart of a Marine!

Judy's father (a 17 year old First Marine) was stuck in a fox hole, getting ready to defend Henderson Airfield at Edson's Ridge Guadacanal.  These "Edson's Raiders" were the first Special Ops trained to handle the Japanese Samurai in the Pacific, If the Raiders could defend Henderson Field, they would break the Japanese supply line, keep them from advancing and hand them their first defeat.  They held Henderson Filed.

To honor her father and commemorate the 70th anniversary of Guadacanal, and to mark her 70th birthday, Judy Roda a 1 year breast cancer survivor decided to challenge her by running an obstacle course race!  She had been taking classes with Renae McCloud and added Personal Training with Carol to develop a program to prepare her for The Warrior Dash!  “I relied on Renae "Queen of Obstacle Runs" and the spirit of a warrior to push me through!"

"I am so proud of the work Judy has done!  She was determined to race and her family decided to support her by racing with her!   I love Judy's sayings “It is never too late for a 'do over!' and "older girls can do it too!'  She shows what can be accomplished with consistent training!"  

Judy blows my socks off and inspires me every time I see her. She’s 70 years old, beat cancer and kicked the Warrior Dash in the butt. I hope I have her spirit at her age! Wonder what it takes? She has a positive outlook on life, laughs and smiles a lot, is consistent in her training, works hard and is dedicated to her health and wellbeing. She’s already looking at next year, wondering what challenge she’ll conquer! I love that about her. What have I learned from Judy? To be positive every day, to never give up and to keep moving forward.

When she came back after the race she left me a note that read "The Warrior Dash was a blast! I did all of the obstacles and kept pace! 1:23mins...THANK YOU!!"

Oly By Bobbie M.

07 November, 2016

I am very pleased to be participating in Zumba with Oly. She is an amazing teacher/person.  Her skill as a dancer combined with her joyful personality make working hard a pleasure.  She cues just enough to keep us all going. I hope she can continue to offer a number of Zumba classes. Thank you.

Oly by Amy M.

28 October, 2016

Oly is such an incredible teacher and addition to the gym family! See y'all soon! Island fitness is THE BEST!!!  xoxo

~Amy M.


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