Kate Parker is no stranger to group fitness classes. Before coming to Pursuit Fitness and Performance, Kate worked out at another group fitness gym. She made friends there and had a routine. But then, the group she worked out with slowly drifted apart. Kate was looking for a place with more accountability. She wanted a real community. Being a busy financial advisor, she also wanted someplace close to her work. One of Kate’s friends posted on Facebook about her workout at Pursuit, so Kate texted her to get more information. “I tried it, and I liked it,” Kate says. “There’s accountability there, but they’re not like drill sergeants. They’re encouraging, and they talk to you like you’re an adult and have common sense.”
Kate has been doing group training two times a week for almost two years now. She feels like she’s found a community again. “By the time I leave (after a workout), I feel good, not just because I’ve worked out but also because the people there are so nice. Both the trainers and the members,” Kate says.
Of course, for Kate, like many, the workouts are the easiest part of the equation. “Diet has always been my biggest challenge,” Kate says. “When you show up to exercise you exercise. It’s simple. But (with diet) when my stress level gets really high, I don’t care (what I eat.)” Kate has worked with Pursuit’s trainers to work on finding balance in this regard. She gets Pursuit’s “Basically Fit” meals, which are her go-to for healthy, weeknight dinners, and she’s learned a lot about nutrition from Pursuit trainer, Anna. Kate has always had a love/hate relationship with Dr. Pepper. Anna encouraged her to see if she could give it up. “But when I fell off the wagon and had a soda again, she said that it was OK. Anna encouraged me to keep trying without discouraging me. It’s a nice balance. They are very much about how to exercise grace with yourself in a reasonable way. Their goal is not for you to be perfect.”
Kate appreciates this part of the Pursuit culture, which trickles down to its members. She likes that she can just be herself at Pursuit and be totally accepted by the community. “When you go to the gym, it’s not about whether or not I’ve shaved my legs or these pants are out of style,” Kate says. That’s not the vibe. Everyone is welcoming.” Kate feels like a part of the Pursuit community. She has participated in some of the group trips as well, including a fitness retreat to Zion National Park. Here she picked up a few essential life skills, like making an easy egg casserole and how to find courage on a challenging hike. In Zion, Kate got to know Pursuit members, trainers, and founder, Ryan Morgan, even better. “Everyone knows my name, everyone is very welcoming,” she says. “They really get to know you. They love on you well.”
These days, Kate is content with her progress, but always willing to work toward that next goal. For now, she’s been working on making healthier diet choices and being more consistent with stretching. But she feels that Pursuit has given her the tools to achieve the next level of success in these areas. “They made me more aware of what my body needs,” Kate says. “I do feel stronger, and I’m deciding these decisions on my own. I’m a lot more engaged in the process.”
GET TO KNOW KATE:
Favorite exercise: Anything that involves throwing the wall balls are my favorite. I always save those for last. I also like doing push-ups because when I first started at Pursuit, I was doing them on my knees, but now I can do a full push-up. I don’t enjoy doing them, but I enjoy finishing them and just being like ‘hells yeah, I just did that!’
Least favorite exercise: There are none that I really dread doing.
Go to healthy meal: “Basically Fit” meals on the go.
Go to breakfast: Yogurt, granola, blueberries, and a bottle of water.
Family: I don’t have any family in St. Louis, they are all in Houston. My parents live there, as well as my sister, who is married and has two boys.
Career: A financial advisor for 15 years
Hobbies: Worship leader at Church and does a weekly Bible study with a group of women.
Current Goals: It’s the end of the year for me at work, so my goal is just to survive without losing my mind. In general, I want to make healthier food decisions and to be more consistent with stretching. I’m also working toward my Certified Financial Planner license.
Looking forward to…Taking a cruise with a friend. Last time I did a cruise, it was to the Bahamas in my twenties. So, this is my first “real” cruise to Canada and Halifax.
Fun facts? I love to travel. I try to travel as much as possible. This year I went to the UK, and I’ve been to Israel. I love seeing different cultures and places. Ireland is probably my favorite place so far.