We at Kennedy Fitness are so inspired by our amazing member, Kellie Biere Miller. She has transformed her life, and we think her story deserves to be shared! For many of us, maintaining a healthy lifestyle can sometimes be difficult, and at times, downright frustrating. As we move through life, there is no shortage of obstacles that come into play, making getting or staying fit seem like an impossible feat. We at Kennedy Fitness, are here for you, and our amazing nurses, instructors, and trainers are here to help guide you every step of the way. We hope Kellie’s incredible story can inspire you, just as she has inspired us!
Through her teens and early 20’s, Kellie was very active and involved in sports and fitness. As she says, “I was the queen of step,” and she loved taking aerobics classes. Kellie developed a thyroid problem in her late teens. Once her doctors were able to diagnose the problem, she was put on thyroid medication to help correct the issue. Though the problems with her thyroid started to make things difficult, Kellie really started to gain weight after she had her first daughter, at the age of 22. It’s a story many moms know all too well – you go into “Mom Mode,” all the focus and energy go towards your little one, and you stop taking time for yourself. “It was that mentality of everything baby, nothing me,” Kellie told us.
When her daughter turned 5, Kellie decided it was time to get back to the gym, determined to get herself back on track. Though the weight did initially start to come off, like for so many of us, it came right back. This cycle of losing weight, and gaining it back continued for close to 15 years. Eventually, Kellie’s weight got up to 320 pounds. She wasn’t feeling well and decided to see her doctor about it. After taking her blood pressure and seeing her sugar levels, her doctor told her that her blood pressure was incredibly high and that she was now pre-diabetic.
Kellie was prescribed more medications to try and get her blood pressure under control. This was Kellie’s wake-up call. As soon as she got home from the doctor, Kellie called Debbie Pettit, one of our awesome Personal Trainers here, at Kennedy Fitness. Kellie had known Debbie for a number of years and used to work out at her gym. “I told her, I need to do something. I was NOT going to be diabetic, I refused.”
With Debbie’s help and guidance, Kellie began her road to recovery, determined to make changes and improve her life. Kellie started going to classes and found a passion for Spinning and Zumba. She particularly enjoyed Debbie’s spin classes, and Zumba with Gladys, another one of our fantastic instructors.
“I love Zumba with Gladys, she has such a great spirit! When you see someone who’s so passionate [like Gladys is], it’s inspiring, and so much fun!”
As her personal trainer, Debbie introduced Kellie to weight training, which had never been of any interest to Kellie before.
Kellie explained, “I always thought weight training would make me get bulky,” but Debbie taught her that this was a misconception, and that weight training would really help her with the weight loss while getting her muscles toned and lean in the process. Kellie always found herself able to “go hard” and keep up in cardio fitness classes but was surprised to find how much cardio was involved in lifting weights. In Kellie’s opinion, this is one of the best parts of getting to work with a personal trainer. A trainer will introduce you to different type of exercises and fitness equipment, some that you may never have otherwise considered trying. Having Debbie as her personal trainer also helped Kellie to stay motivated. Kellie says that Personal Training helps “kickstart” her. She says, “It helps when you hit that wall or plateau, your trainer is there to help you push past it, instead of getting discouraged. Your trainer will ask you what you want, or want to work on, and they tailor your workout to your specific needs, and help you maintain the proper form.”
We all know that exercise should be part of our life, but a lot of times people forget how important diet is in trying to lose weight or maintain a healthy lifestyle. Kellie is thankful to Debbie for helping her with the nutritional side of things as well. “I think the diet part is always more difficult. It was really hard, but Debbie helped me with nutrition. I went to her every week; we would log everything I ate. She would go through [my food log] and tell me what needed to be adjusted. Once I got to where I knew what I was supposed to do with my diet, everything really started to come together. I was seeing results from the workouts, but I really started to see big changes once I changed my diet.” Kellie is so grateful to Debbie for helping her get to where she is now. “Debbie is a fantastic trainer who designs personal workouts that are challenging and motivating. I cannot thank her enough for getting me to the healthy person I am today.” Whether it’s trying out a new cardio routine, booking your first personal training session, or showing up for your first session of yoga in Marlton, at Kennedy Fitness, we’ll help you take the first step toward your journey back to health!
Today, Kellie is 145 pounds lighter, has lost 12.8% body fat, and a total of 58.25 inches. She is no longer on medication for her blood pressure, or in danger of becoming diabetic. The only medication she takes is for her thyroid. Kellie is now in fantastic shape, and works out at Kennedy Fitness in Mullica Hill, six days a week, every week. It was hard work, but Kellie has transformed her body and her life through fitness. She is now at a point where she is healthy. “I have things I have to work on, everybody does, but I’m HEALTHY. When I get up in the morning, I’m not in pain! I move easier, quicker, everything in my life has just shifted, and I feel like I’m back to where I used to be.”
Kellie considers Kennedy Fitness Mullica Hill to be her happy place, “When I have a bad day, coming here makes me feel better. You meet people here, and it gets to be like a family.”
Kellie encourages those who may be insecure and hesitant about the gym, to not to let the fear get in the way. “Everyone was a beginner at some point. We don’t judge [at Kennedy Fitness], come to a Zumba class, and get right up there in the front! When I’m in that class, I’m on stage, and I’m fabulous. You might do all the wrong steps, but as long as you’re moving, you’re doing great!” Kennedy Fitness has seven amazing locations, and if you’re interested in Zumba, check out our gym in Mt. Laurel!