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Posts from the ‘Pro Profile’ Category

Pro Profile: Ryan Foley, SoulCycle, Greenwich & Westport

With the arrival of spring we often look forward to Easter and Passover, Spring Break and outdoor farmers markets.  This spring, however, will be different from others.  Why? Well unless you’ve been hibernating all winter (which is entirely possible) you know that the fitness scene in Fairfield County and particularly in Westport is about to gain a new addition.  Come April, SoulCycle Westport will open their doors at 374 Post Road East (next to Trader Joe’s).

Photo credit Soul Cycle

Ryan Foley, Photo credit SoulCycle

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Pro Profile: Megan Hoffman, Oxygen Fitness, New Canaan

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Photo by Steven Gomillion

One quick ‘google’ of the name ‘Megan Hoffman’ and you realize quickly that this woman is no joke.  A former All American lacrosse player and coach, an accomplished model, WBFF Diva Bikini Pro, fitness competitor and fitness instructor confirms that she is at minimum an overachiever.  In addition to being genetically blessed (she’s stunning!), her resume proves that she’s much more than a pretty face.  She’s a contributor to one of my favorite online reads, “Well and Good”, Oxygen and Women’s Health magazines and in her spare time developed and hosted the “Slim, Sexy & Strong” workout video for Rodale.

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Photo by Conor Doherty

Back in 2012, Megan was tapped by the owners of Oxygen to become the Director of Fitness at the new boutique gym they were developing.  Together with Oxygen founder/owner Sara Koch, the duo spent months researching and developing all aspects of Oxygen – from the interior and design, to the types of classes offered.  Megan’s positivity and creativity are scattered around the club; she developed and named the juice and smoothie recipes at the O-Bar and the motivating phrases in the cycling room wall are hers as well.

Currently Megan has 10 personal training clients that she sees 1-2x a week and teaches approximately 16 classes weekly (Cycle, Bootcamp, Cross Fit, Fit in 30, Sleek, Sexy & Strong in addition to several after school youth classes).  She’s also the New Canaan Varsity Assistant lacrosse coach/ conditioning coach.

Megan Hoffman post cycle class.

Megan Hoffman post cycle class.

As an instructor and fixture at Oxygen, Megan exudes positivity and simultaneously demands the best out of her students.  Her classes are so. damn. good; intense and no matter what your fitness level, she has a certain way of pushing all of her students above and beyond their comfort zone.  I sampled a couple of her classes and upon completion felt spent and depleted, yet fulfilled and accomplished.  (Do you follow?) She is clearly loved by all at Oxygen; she takes no excuses but is quite likable at the same time.  She is fierce yet creative, motivating and challenging.  She spends evenings after her six year old son has gone to bed pouring over music, finding new, off the beat artists and putting together playlists for her classes.  While teaching she is passionate but makes it look effortless.  In her cycling class she quickly transitions from one piece to the other, allowing little recovery and down time thus maximum efficiency.  She makes her classes interesting, incorporates upper body, takes you up and down rolling hills and through even steeper climbs.  She even threw in a little Tabata at the end of my class.  Her bootcamp was equally intense.  While holding a plank (no standing around in her classes), she walked us through different stations she had set up with weighted exercises.  We spent 1 minute at each station and rotated through all exercises 4 times.  Jump squats (with a sandbag), plank (with a sandbag on your back), up and down stairs (with a sandbag), pushups (with a sandbag), you get my drift? She keeps you guessing as no two classes she teaches – bootcamp, TRX, cycle, Fit in 30, Cross Fit, etc. – are ever the same.

As a personal trainer Megan is always ‘on call’ for her clients.  She responds to their texts on health and nutrition classes around the clock.  Her experience in conquering eating disorders makes her the perfect health coach and she is able to give sound nutrition advice.


The phrases in the cycling studio are Megan’s mantras

In between teaching a killer indoor cycling class and running in to NYC for a QVC hosting gig, Megan graciously sat down with me so I could ask her a few personal questions…

What do you eat for breakfast?  1/4 cup oatmeal, 1 egg, 2 egg whites and coffee with unsweetened almond milk.

How many fitness classes do you teach per week?  Approximately 16.

What is your favorite post workout snack?  I always have a green apple and a bag of Trader Joe’s of unsalted, roasted almonds.

Your greatest indulgence?  Rose & red velvet

Your favorite line of workout wear?  Lululemon (together with ripped t-shirts)

Where can we find you on a Saturday night?  If I am with my son we are at home.  On alternate Saturday nights you can find me taking photography and drawing classes at the Met or MOMA in NYC dining at restaurants down in the village.

What is your healthy eating philosophy?  I’ve been Paleo for 2 1/2 years now, although I do have 1/4 cup of oatmeal every morning.  I do cheat occasionally; I have a sweet tooth.

Favorite vacation spot?  Tokyo

If given 2 hours to do whatever you want, what would you do?  Take a Soul Cycle class in NYC (some of my best friends are SoulCycle instructors), take a Bikram yoga class and grab an almond milk latte.

Who or what inspires you?  My grandmother.  She played basketball at Mount Holyoke which was almost unheard of in her time.  I come from a family of strong, independent and sometimes rebellious women who inspire me to do the same.

What do you do to stay Fit in CT?  Soul Cycle, Bikram, CrossFit (Hybrid in Stamford).

Pro Profile: Richard Failla, Fairfield Hot Yoga

Most adults usually want to avoid policemen for one reason or another.  So why does one Westport cop literally have 35 people who seek him out on a Tuesday night at 7:30 to spend 75 minutes with him in a 95 degree room?  Answer:  Because he is the owner and instructor extraordinaire at Fairfield Hot Yoga.

Richard and his German Shepard, Yogi

Richard and his German Shepard, Yogi

A veteran police officer (29 years!), Richard Failla was introduced to Bikram Yoga 15 years ago at the suggestion of his dog walker.  One class changed him forever … it was love at first sweat.  After practicing for four years he became Bikram certified in 2006 and then opened FHY in the Sportsplex in 2010.

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Pro Profile: Armond Jordan, JoyRide Cycling Studio, Darien & Westport

This post was written by FitCT contributor Margie Treisman

FitCT readers already know about JoyRide and are familiar with at least a couple of the studio’s amazing cycling instructors.  Get to know another one … Armond Jordan. (You may have noticed him on the JoyRide billboard at the Westport train station … and those trademark ARMond arms!)

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Photo by Julianne Mulvey

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Workout of the Week: Evolution, Westport

For 14 years many of Westport’s fittest have been convening at a gym that’s hidden on Westport’s Post Road East.  “Julie at Evolution” needs no explanation to her loyal followers, but for all others, this blog post is for you.


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Pro Profile: Maggie Converse, M3 Yoga, Westport

maggie 1I first met Maggie right before I took her ‘Fearless Flow’ class at M3 Yoga a couple of weeks ago.  I liked her instantly.  I can’t put my finger on it but I knew from the second I met her that I was going to enjoy her class and I knew she had more to offer than an hour of great yoga instruction.  Maggie is confident, approachable, friendly and enthusiastic about you taking her class.  You can tell she is passionate about what she does.

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Pro Profile: Mackenzie Pretty

mackenzieMost Westporters in the fitness scene either know Mackenzie Pretty professionally or personally.  She teaches several classes at JoyRide Studios in both Westport and Darien and is also the Group Fitness Director (and an instructor) for Crunch in Norwalk where she is responsible for their Norwalk, Orange & Stratford locations.

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Pro Profile: Rhodie Lorenz, JoyRide Cycling Studio, Darien & Westport

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Rhodie Lorenz, photo by Josh Chapman

Earlier this week I published a blog post on JoyRide Cycling Studios and while writing I became intrigued by co-owner and head instructor, Rhodie Lorenz.  Prior to this interview I knew little about her other than the fact that she consistently packs every single class she teaches.  I’ve been lucky enough to snag a bike in a few of her classes and I can tell you that she is motivating, enthusiastic, always plays great music.  It is easy to forget that you are also getting a stellar workout.

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Pro Profile: Andrew Kindt, Co-owner Achieve Fitness, Norwalk

I find myself surrounded by inspiring & super fit people on a daily basis and am always curious of their lifestyles.  In Fit CT’s first “Pro Profile” I asked Co-Owner of Achieve Fitness, Andrew Kindt, some personal questions… Read more