Retraining the brain: Redefining health goals and measuring results

November 2015 Posted in Business
Kristy Ward and Janae Senter are the owners of Body Theory Fitness Studio in Silverton.

Kristy Ward and Janae Senter are the owners of Body Theory Fitness Studio in Silverton.

By Kristine Thomas

Silverton residents Janae Senter and Kristy Ward are diligently working to change the idea about what it means to have a fit and healthy body.

They want people to stop thinking that being skinny and skimping on food to become thin is what’s healthy. Or the idea all women should look like super models, especially since those women make up a small percent of the population and the methods they use to become that thin aren’t always healthy.

For Senter and Ward, being healthy means being strong. It’s about having a strong body, mind and soul and it’s about being confident in the body you have.

“One thing we do is retrain the brain about how it thinks about what a healthy body is,” Ward said.

They started Body Theory Fitness Studio in 2014 with a boot camp and recently opened a studio on First Street.

They offer group fitness classes with names like Burn, Fire and Ice and personal training. They also offer childcare.

“The theory is simple,” according to their website. “Treat your body right and it will work the way it was intended. With proper nutrition and exercise you will change your shape, feel more alive and stronger.”

Their ideas about being fit and healthy are resonating with their clients.

Alicia Coker wrote on Body Theory Fitness Studio’s Facebook page that she has taken classes for a month and is “addicted.”

“I always leave feeling good about what I just accomplished, (and soaked in sweat of course!),” she wrote.

Body Theory Fitness
106 N First St., Silverton
Class descriptions and schedule:
Childcare offered for a fee.

She credited the instructors with being knowledgeable, experienced and each having their own strengths and styles.

“I feel stronger physically, mentally and emotionally,” she added. “I am seeing results and change in my body after only four weeks….AMAZING! I am building better habits. I am sleeping better, eating better, and I have so much more energy, and all of these things help me be a better wife and mom!”

Senter and Ward were both working as fitness instructors in Salem at different clubs. They met when Ward came to Senter’s hair salon. They began talking about their vision and ideas about what it meant to be fit, realizing they had similar ideas.

They shared how challenging it was for many women to workout because they didn’t have childcare and how there wasn’t a studio in the area that offered it.

“We both had the vision that we wanted to help people become healthy and stronger,” Senter said. “Our goal is to inspire people to be their best.”

Kelly Piper, 38, has two children, ages 2 and 4 years old.

“When my youngest child turned 1 years old, I was ready to work out but there was no place that offered childcare,” she said. “I enjoy coming here because the workouts are different and challenging and I leave feeling good about myself.”

Piper said she has seen how much it means for other moms to have a place to workout, too.

“I think it is so important we do things for ourselves as moms,” she said. “This allows us to do that.”

The mother of three children, Steffanie Hupp said she wouldn’t be able to workout if there wasn’t a place that offered childcare.

“The classes and the staff challenge you and push you to become better,” she said. “The instructors help you understand how to eat better and how to fuel your body to perform better.”

A triathlete, Lainie Pyper, 41, said the classes challenge all levels, from beginners to marathon runners.

“There is something for everyone here,” she said. “The instructors know how to work with each individual.”

More importantly, Pyper said there is a sense of “sisterhood. I couldn’t ask for better friends. I appreciate Janae and Kristy for setting great examples and for their knowledge. When they talk about the body, they emphasize having a healthy body.”

There’s another notion about fitness and healthy eating that Senter and Ward are trying to do away with is. It’s the idea that to be fit and healthy you have to be perfect – always eat healthy and never miss a scheduled workout.

“Women are too hard on themselves,” Senter said.

“We all have bad days where we eat too many Oreos,” Ward added. “We tell women it’s OK if they mess up on eating healthy. They just need to try again tomorrow.”

They recently held an 8-Weeks Back to Fit Challenge, encouraging healthy eating habits and exercise.

“It taught us that you have your bad days, and you can get back at it the next day and move forward,” they shared on Facebook. “Not to feel guilty over that birthday treat or dinner date, that carbohydrates are a vital part to our nourishment and strength, as is enough calories! The most beautiful part is hearing from our group they were never hungry, always felt full and couldn’t believe how much they were eating.”

They said on average a woman who works out should be consuming 1,800 to 2,200 calories a day of healthy food. During their fitness challenge, the group lost a total of 93 inches.

“We don’t do the scale here. We encourage people to stay off of it because it’s mentally exhausting to play the scale game,” Senter said. “It’s not about pounds, it’s about losing inches.”

“Our goal is to teach lifestyle changes and habits,” Ward said. “We want people to know this is something they can do and stick with.”

Describing their vision becoming a reality as “surreal,” Senter and Ward have plans for the future, including expanding their own knowledge on fitness and nutrition, working with athletic teams on conditioning and strength training, and continuing to educate their clients.

“The education part is what shows results,” Senter said.

“We are retraining people how they think about food and how to train their body to get results. We want people to feel healthy and feel confident. Being healthy and fit is about being strong.”

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