Let me start this one off by saying, I am by NO MEANS an expert at fitness or being a gym rat. However, I am good at failing until I find something that is a win for me.

When it comes the gym, its a love-hate relationship. I hate going, sweating, doing the work, but I love how I feel after. My journey with going to the gym has never been a solid, straight-and-narrow path. It’s been more like a bumpy roller coaster that has de-railed the tracks to many times to continue functioning.

I have tried 24/7 gyms and the concept was great! I could go late at night when there are fewer people so that my confidence isn’t completely shot. The atmosphere was quieter and I didn’t have to wait or fight for my time with a machine. All of those things were wonderful for me. However, the one thing that was not so great and didn’t matter what time of the day was the workout I was getting. Running, it’s just not my thing. Cardio is…hardio. I get bored. I tried playlists and watching shows – it didn’t entertain me or keep me interested. So my treadmill time was very short. Moving on to weights, I don’t mind weights. Really, I don’t. I don’t see why people are scared of weights, you burn calories and burn body fat! Lifting weights is great if it’s done correctly, but I never knew what I was doing. I never knew if I had the right posture or if I was doing the right amount of reps. This is my main problem with basic gyms, I don’t have anyone there coaching me and helping correct what I’m doing wrong. If I am doing something the wrong way, I am not going to benefit.

Standard gyms and I had numerous on and off relationships but in the end it was time to stop wasting my time (AND MONEY!) and find the right fit for me.

After trying to figure out what was right for me I started to try some classes…first up, cycling. I can ride a bike and but cycling classes..that is a whole other bear. I’m already uncoordinated but I felt so awkward and the most uncoordinated I have ever been. Standing. Sitting. Standing. Add in weights now. Go faster. Beat your teammate. Do this and that to the music. Nope. My uncoordinated self was out.

Hotbox_bagsI decided to give the whole fitness thing a break and one day I just was really feeling motivated and wanted to try again and find something that was a “fit” for me. I was on a mission to find something that would be my niche. Apparently, I was really trying to channel my inner Jake Gyllenhaal as Billy Hope in Southpaw, without the court cases, drinking and losing everything I own thing, of course…. because I suddenly had the urge to try boxing. Something about that movie just makes me feel like I can be a badass. Sidenote: If you haven’t ever seen it, you should!

This is when I found my place in the fitness world. I looked up a couple boxing gyms here in Nashville and it came down to Title and Hotbox. I stumbled across Hotbox’s page, I hadn’t ever heard of it where title seemed to be a bit more intense than what I was wanting. I decided to take a class and see what happened from there.

Hotbox_deskHotbox was everything I hated: sweating and heat. I don’t like to sweat and I don’t like to be hot. Well I should have known from the title that it was going to be hot (Duh, Jennifer). At the same time, Hotbox was everything I loved and wanted to love about a gym. The staff is friendly and made me feel welcome and comfortable. There is such a great sense of community at Hotbox that you can’t find at any other gym. Some of the staff have offered to help me move. Some staff  have taken time after class to help me with an issue on my vehicle. Some staff just take the time to just ask about how life is going. Where else are you going to find that? I never felt judged by the other members, which was a big fear of mine. The staff have always been helpful and encourage me that I am better and stronger than I think I am and not to mention very understanding when I had to modify certain exercises due to prior surgeries. I am always looking forward to my next class. I may hate myself during class and question every ounce of that decision but I love the feeling when I’m done. I love walking out of a class feeling good, feeling like a badass.

Am I saying you need to join Hotbox or a gym like Hotbox? No, not necessarily. Although, I’m a bit biased and think everyone should love Hotbox or at least give it a try…what I’m saying is that when choosing a gym I hope that you find somewhere that you feel comfortable, that you feel encouraged, that you get the guidance you are needing to better yourself. A place where you feel good about what you’re doing and the environment that you are spending your time in. Until Hotbox, I never thought I would find a gym that really was judge-free and that I was surrounded by friends rather than lunk-head weightlifters that took selfies in a mirror and who didn’t care was around them.

I have found a gym that was everything I never knew I wanted or needed. Thank you Hotbox for making me enjoy working out, making me feel comfortable, encouraging me to always be better and for making me feel like I am a badass, even if it is an uncoordinated one.