It’s back to school season and we’re suddenly reminded of our own school days. Things have changed since then- instead of five cups of coffee during late night study sessions, today’s college students are consuming sugary energy drinks to keep their eyes open. With little time in between papers & projects, students are heating up Ramen noodles and squeezing in time to binge on the all-you-can-eat buffets lined with more poor decisions than healthy ones. After a few weeks of this lifestyle, the “Freshman Fifteen” rears its ugly head -- an expression referring to the extra weight college students tend to gain in their first year on campus.

If you've experienced traditional college life, you can probably relate to the transition of priorities and the poor dietary decisions. The stress of new priorities and hard deadlines most likely left you with a less-than nutritious diet, and a schedule so tight you couldn’t squeeze in a phone call with mom, let alone a trip to the gym.

“Timmy is very gifted... a little cocky, but gifted,” PAC Fitness trainer Perry Coolbaugh jokes about his student Timothy Cavanaugh. “I’m just kidding. He’s about as humble as they come.” 
Now a freshman at Holy Redeemer, Timmy began training with Perry as a 110lb 7th grader who wanted to build strength for baseball and basketball. “It’s hard work, but it’s fun. I enjoy it.” he says almost two years later. Timmy uses the phrase “tough love” to explain the dynamic between Perry and himself. Perry calls it his “hate me now, love me later” philosophy. The playful but focused relationship between Perry and Timmy must be working, because Timmy has recruited a good portion of his baseball team to join him for Spring Training with Perry. 

PAC Fitness Prodigy Reaches Peak
Victoria Blazick has always been a runner. A good runner, in fact. She was eating healthy and hitting the gym 5 times a week for intense cardio. Although she was in great shape, her sister, Virginia, encouraged her to take her fitness a step further. Thus began Victoria’s journey at PAC Fitness with trainer Perry Coolbaugh. It was then that Victoria realized how much unused potential she had.
Victoria now works out seven days a week, between PAC and her cardio gym workouts- all on top of working as a full-time teacher at Wyoming Area. When asked if it was hard to make time for such an intense workout schedule, Victoria simply stated that fitness is her number-one priority. No commitment issues here.
There’s a certain catch-22 when going to the gym. Fears of inadequacy, embarrassment, and failure get stuck in your throat as you watch tightened and toned gym-goers do their thing. You can’t go to the gym while you’re this out of shape, but you can’t really get into shape unless you go to the gym. So when I was headed to PAC Fitness to get a glimpse of their young adult class, I became acutely aware of that second muffin I had for breakfast and my jiggling thighs. “Oh no,” I thought, “even kids have more motivation than I do.” 

Striving for failure? It sounds counterproductive, right?

 At PAC Fitness, we try to fail every day, and I will explain why.

Each time we push our bodies to the point of total depletion, when we are out of breath, out of strength and sometimes even our stomachs are out of us, we are putting our bodies at ground zero. From there, they can only be built higher. 

Spending time in and getting used to the feeling of physical failure familiarizes us with it.

We know our fitness goals are somewhere beyond failure and by shaking hands with our obstacles, deep-set fatigue, soreness and shallow lung capacity, if we focus, we map out the path to climb over them and reach our goals.

Michael Jordan said "I've failed over and over and over again in my life and that is why I succeed."