Every new year provides an opportunity to change for the better. In 2013, Crowbar Client Amber Aikens-Robidou made huge strides in finding a way to make fitness work for her, despite old injuries and limitations. And her results have been awesome. Amber is a formidable presence on the rower and an undeniable asset to any Indo-Row team, but it's her sunny smile and the warm encouragement she always offers to her other teammates that make her a true favorite around the studio. We're so happy this was the year she joined the Crowbar Crew and so happy to round out our year by recognizing her.
"After a major knee injury and surgery, the doctors told me it would be best to stop playing basketball, weight lifting, biking, jogging, racquetball, pretty much everything I have enjoyed doing for physical activity. I was devastated, after 20 yrs of being a strong competitive athlete; this news was hard to swallow. I became depressed and stopped all physical activity and gained much unwanted weight. I had to find something I could do without pain (when even walking is painful most days). This search brought me to try rowing, and to my surprise I can push and row as hard as I can with NO pain. It’s like a little miracle to me each time I row.
Now that I had found something I could do, I had to find a place to do it. This is what brought me to Crowbar Cardio. I am so happy to find a place I can work hard, have fun, make friends, and burn a ton of calories all at the same time. After joining Crowbar the competitive athlete inside me starting coming out again and over the past 4 months I have lost 40 pounds and went from a size 14 to a size 8. Not only did I loss the weight I gained after surgery, BUT I am in even better shape then I was as a semi pro athlete. I owe it to the amazing classes and staff at Crowbar cardio, and I little hard work. If I can get out of my slump with so many limitations, YOU CAN TOO!"
Monday, December 15, 2014
Sunday, November 9, 2014
Why am I working out while pregnant? I'll tell you why. This is my second pregnancy and with my first I gained 80 pounds! Somebody pass this girl the chocolate chip cookies! Let's just say I ate my way through Dallas for 9 months.
Obviously, things HAD to change!
After I had our baby girl 2 years ago I discovered the link between WHAT one eats WITH your exercise. Turns out you have a way better work out when you skip the cookies - and then I actually started enjoying the exercise because I wasn't dying! I really fell in love with working out and was greatly motivated by the desire to keep up with my energetic toddler.
Fast forward to being pregnant again. Yay! This time I wanted to take care of the strong body I had worked for, but I also wanted to take it down a notch and not be too hard on myself lifting weights and running.
Enter Crowbar! It was the perfect fit with the rowing, cycling and barre options. The welcoming and kind coaches and community turned out to be this amazing added bonus.
Client of the month! And I didn't even have to go into labor during Triple Threat...but I was prepared to do just that. What a great ride this has been and continues to be. I've never been a mega-gym or go-run-alone type worker-outer, so when I discovered Crowbar, it was the perfect fit. I loved the classes, loved the community feel and loved the results.
I found out late February that we were pregnant with our second child. I was flooded with memories of my first pregnancy. Otherwise known as my 9 month hall pass to eat mac and cheese and make permanent indentions on the couch from laying around watching tv. "This is the life!," I thought. Wrong. My payback came in the form of a really tough labor and a hard recovery. Oh, and the miracle of life.
When I found out we were on the gravy train again, I vowed to do it differently. I read the positive pregnancy tests and literally ran to and from barre that evening. Some might argue I took that personal oath a little far. Not sure I recommend two-a-days at six months pregnant, but I blame that on the summer challenge. Those points were like crack.
The instructors were full of modifications for each stage of the journey. I felt the collective effort from the Crowbar team to hit my goal: a safe and healthy pregnancy. Nine months later, I was totally prepared both mentally and physically to bring this kid into the world. And on November 4th, I unleashed my awesome in the form of a 9lb 7oz beast we named William Robert.
Friday, October 17, 2014
I had never been athletic growing up, the only thing I loved was the water, and being fortunate enough to live in Singapore during my high school years, I enrolled in a PADI Open Water Diver course just to kill some time in the summer before school started. I loved it and made it all the way up to Divemaster, with several specialty certifications, including Rescue Diver and Reef Fish ID. But then I came to Dallas to go to SMU, and just never left. No ocean in Big D, unfortunately. Sad face.
I remember when I was at SMU from 1983-1987 (before some of you were born!!), aerobics was still a THING in fitness, and yes, don’t laugh, I had one of those really high-cut-on-the-sides leotards and a couple of pairs of leg warmers. I worked out two or three times a week at some place on Mockingbird and Skillman that is not there anymore and of which I can’t remember the name. I liked it though, and pushed myself, and felt pretty good. Fast forward about 10 years…I had two little ones and no time to myself at all, much less time to work out. When they were a little older, in about 2000 or so, I signed up at the Y because they had great child care when the moms and dads wanted to work out. I got into a step aerobics class, and loved it, it was intense and challenging. I stuck with that class for several years, and made and kept lifelong friends from that class.
Then I moved in 2004 and joined Gold’s Gym, formerly White Rock Athletic Club, and it was there that I would first call myself an athlete. Never, ever before would I have used that word to describe myself. I met a trainer that motivated me like no other, he pushed and yelled and sometimes screamed, but it was always with love and genuine care for my health and progress. We remain close friends to this day. Boot camp, PoP class, kickboxing, spin class…I was so pleased with myself I even ran a couple of 5Ks! And I was down to a size 2, which was pretty awesome. But I felt HEALTHY instead of just skinny; healthy and strong.
So fast forward again, it’s 2012. A few major life events happened, including my mom’s death, my daughter graduating from high school, a breast cancer scare (negative!)…and some other stuff…so I was not working out at all for a while. Super sad face. Did Title Boxing Club for a year and liked it, but never could make it to the gym more than once or twice a week, and that wasn’t cutting it. I do not remember how I first discovered Crowbar, maybe it was all of my ex-roomie’s Facebook posts (Debbie and I were roommates in 1991-92, if you can believe that!) but I did my Intro week at the end of January and have never looked back. I love it, I love Karen, Molly, and Alika, and will very soon venture into Triple Threat and maybe Bikes, Bands, & Balls…I’ve been doing Indo row and Tsunami (4 X a week total) for about two months now and can really see and feel a huge difference from 3 X a week. Thank you to everyone at Crowbar Cardio for helping me re-unleash my awesome!
Tuesday, September 16, 2014
Our always-smiling September client of the month has a knack for creative Indo-Row team names and is about to hit the 100 class milestone. We love Gaela Renee Hall for her can-do attitude, the fact that she laughs at all of our jokes and because when she found out she had been selected as this month's featured client, she came to class in a sparkly tiara. She's a testament to the theory that fitness can be fun.
"Since my early twenties I have valued being physically active on some level (despite what my weight and the number on my clothing tags said). I had worked out at gyms off and on for many years doing classes and rocking the elliptical, but I can't say I ever really saw any significant results.
For a couple of years I'd been interested in rowing and had researched options for taking lessons on the water. One day while driving I saw Crowbar Cardio. A new business that had seemed to pop up overnight on lower Greenville. It piqued my interest enough to do a little internet searching and I liked what I saw. I was already talking it up to friends before I even signed up for the one-week trial.
After that trial week, I bought a class package and began to get a feel for the Indo-Rowers and knew I was on to something good. That summer they introduced a 6-week challenge. Not really one to challenge myself too much, I took a chance and signed up. It was then I began to see some changes. Not just physically or on the scale. Something clicked. I was pushed more than I had ever been pushed physically during the various classes I took. There was a personal investment by instructors and there was a camaraderie (along with some healthy competition) building between participants and Crowbar staff. It was hard, it was frustrating, but I just kept showing up. After 6-weeks were up, my final measurements were taken and I think they were down about 6 inches overall.
Since that challenge I’ve continued to attend mostly the rowing classes on a weekly basis and participated in the 6-week challenge this summer. I find that if I go too long without a class I start missing the sound of the water whooshing and the rhythm of the machines. It’s cathartic. For 45 minutes I have to be present and focused. No racing thoughts about my to-do list or whatever is going on in life. It’s just ‘Push! Recover, Recover’ along with the occasional mental gripe of how tired I am, or I can’t get my split time down because my legs feel like jelly, or wondering if I’m ever going to catch my breath again.
There are things that I’ve learned there that I find myself applying to other areas of my life. Don’t hold back. It’s just mental. I’m capable of more. Reach longer. Push harder. In the year and a half that I’ve been at Crowbar I’ve lost a little over 20 lbs and my measurements are down about 15.5 inches overall. I think it’s pretty awesome that I can say that, it’s certainly more than I thought I was capable of. But really I think it’s just physical evidence of overcoming some of my own mental and personal blocks while in that studio, and you can’t put a number on that."
Thursday, August 14, 2014
"As a Photoshop professional I work at a computer all day. I have carpal tunnel, tendonitis and other pains that go along with the hazards of working in cubicle land (and having bad posture.) I needed to get a good stretch along with a good workout. When I started searching for something that would fit into my schedule and not cause additional pain, I focused on Pilates, barre, or yoga classes. I'd seen Crowbar Cardio in the neighborhood, and when I researched it online it seemed like a good fit for my needs.
I’m so glad I gave it a try! Barre class is awesome. It’s stretching, cardio and strength training all in one. Hopefully it will help me become a little more graceful, too.
Years ago I was a member of a large gym. People would race to get to the front desk to sign in for a spin class, and then with equal frenzy they would hurry to the room to save a bike (or two). It was stressful just trying to get to the class, and even if you made it there you weren't guaranteed a bike. At Crowbar, I can sign in on line and know a bike will be waiting for me. I'm SO happy to have found Crowbar."
Monday, July 14, 2014
"I moved to Dallas just over 3 years ago. I had been doing indo-row at a gym in Denver for about 6 months and was excited to find a local gym where I could continue training. I went to the indo-row website and checked for the nearest rowing gym. San Antonio. Sweet.
Once upon a time I could run. Exercise was easy. I could just put on some shoes and run somewhere. Ten years ago, I fell 15 feet onto my back and displaced some vertebrae. No more running for me. My body is now reassembled by a doctor once a month.
As a musician, I need to keep my body in working condition. I am expected to get on stage multiple nights a week and perform for up to three hours and still be able to stand the next day. I turned to indo-row as a full body, low impact workout to stay healthy and improve my strength and endurance. Finding Crowbar has been very important to allow me to work on these things in a fun and stress free environment. I've expanded into Tsunami and Triple Threat. It has been great fun to get to know the trainers and the members and everyone is very supportive of what people are doing in the gym, as well as outside of it. I'm even thinking about bringing my beard and head band to a barre class soon."
Sunday, June 15, 2014
Here's a little background from Wanda on how the two met and a little bit about their fitness philosophy:
"Jan and I met at Tom Landry Fitness at Baylor years ago. We are members of a group called Baylor Babes that a dear friend of ours organized. It consists of female members of Tom Landry. Most of the members are over 50. We meet for dinner occasionally and have a Christmas party every year. We have been members of Crowbar Cardio since it opened. Jan and I both believe that being sedentary is bad for your health. My family and Jan's family are proud of us."