When my wife and I first got up the nerve to walk into Pike Fitness in Hiddenbrooke Plaza in April 2019, Steve Burmann, who co-owns the business with his brother Jeff, asked us to describe our fitness goal. I half-jokingly responded: “To get in shape for retirement.” We were worried that we spent too much time sitting in our home office and that we needed to get more active, but we lacked the motivation to exercise on our own. Also we realized that, while we traveled a lot for business, once we stopped working full-time that we risked becoming even more inactive.
Steve started us on 30-minute, twice-weekly visits where we exercised together with his direct supervision. At first, the exercises seemed to consist of walking drills and stretches that involved little or any of the gym’s extensive equipment. We came to understand that Steve was patiently getting our bodies ready for the more involved exercises that were to come.
Steve’s close attention to how we move with each exercise is evident in the guidance he provides as we workout. Once he had me lift a barbell weighing over 200 pounds from the floor. As I reassured him that I didn’t intend to launch a new career as a professional weight lifter, he was quick to point out how my past workouts have demonstrated to him that I was ready for this weight increase and that his goal for us remained making us stronger for our everyday life and to forestall the muscle atrophy that happens as we grow older if we don’t remain fit.
I especially like how Steve takes the time to explain what muscles we’re strengthening with each exercise and how those muscles are important to common tasks. His insight has changed how we think and move outside the gym as we verbally nudge each other to “hinge” or “squat” as we bend down to pick up something heavy when doing yardwork.
As I reflect on the over 2½ years that we’ve been working out every week with Steve, I remember the moments during my everyday life when I stretch to reach a shelf or pick up an item and realize how much more stable and confident I feel in my own skin. And while I have occasional “good” aches after a workout session, the revitalization that I feel after each workout is a positive feeling unlike any I’ve ever experienced before I worked with Steve. Now that I am fully retired, I can’t imagine not including these gym workouts in my weekly routine.