Many of our clients come to House to Home because they not only want to take back control of their space, but they often want to take back control of their lives. Exercise and staying healthy can be hard for busy people and when you add kids to the equation forget about it. We spoke with Courtney at Fit4Mom for one possible solution to finding the right balance.
For the busy parent, what is Fit4Mom?
FIT4MOM is one stop shopping for the mom looking for a workout, a network of friends for her and her little ones and a supportive village to lean on through all stages of motherhood. As the nation’s leading provider of fitness programs for Moms (Fit4Baby, Stroller Strides, Stroller Barre, Body Back and Run Club) we are dedicated to Strength in Motherhood. Here, women have the opportunity to have a workout and support that is flexible around motherhood!
How did you get started with company?
I discovered FIT4MOM right after I had my first child in 2011. As a brand new (and slightly terrified) mom, a colleague of mine encouraged me to meet her one morning at the Stamford Town Center for a class for moms and their babies called Stroller Strides. Being slightly skeptical and very nervous, I ventured out with my then 6 week old son. I mean was I really going to get a workout? What if my baby cried or was hungry? Do I need a jogging stroller? I had ALL the questions. And no sooner than the first five minutes of class did I know I found my lifeline as a new mom!
The women were kind, engaging, approachable, knowledgeable, authentic. There were moms with brand new babies like me, pregnant moms and veteran moms who had two or more children. The moms were of all fitness levels (and the workout was accessible for everyone) but most importantly, they were a wealth of mom knowledge and an instant village that I needed as a new mom! Our days and routines began to revolve around getting to Stroller Strides. It gave my baby and I a routine, something to look forward to, a great way to stay active without leaving my him and a place for me to connect with other women. Four months into this whole motherhood gig, an opportunity to get certified and start teaching Stroller Strides classes arose and I knew I had found a way to extend my maternity leave from my teaching and coaching career.
Fast forward to my son’s first birthday and we moved from Stamford to Fairfield and my biggest concern, “what was I going to do without Stroller Strides down the street?" For a while, I continued to drive down to Greenwich, Stamford and Norwalk (during rush hour) to attend and teach classes and then I got pregnant with my second. As much as I loved my village down in Stamford and Greenwich, I knew I needed one in my own town. We loved Fairfield but the one thing that was missing was Stroller Strides. So at 8 months pregnant with baby #2, I took a huge leap and purchased a FIT4MOM franchise. And this Spring, we are celebrating our 4 Year Anniversary!
Where are the classes held?
We currently have classes 6 days a week at various locations in Fairfield and Trumbull. During the warmer months (typically mid-April through mid-November) you can spot us at Veterans Park or Owen Fish Park in Fairfield and Twin Brooks park in Trumbull. During the colder weather months we hold classes at the Trumbull Mall before it opens (9am – 10am) and the Field House at Sportsplex in Fairfield.
How does it work with the babies and kids?
During our Stroller Strides and Stroller Barre classes, the babies and kids (ranging anywhere from 6 weeks to typically 4 or 5 years of age) are buckled into their strollers. Each 60-minute workout is comprised of strength training, cardio and core restoration, all while entertaining little ones with songs, activities and fun! You will see the moms lunging and tickling toes, sprinting towards excited little ones ready to give high 5’s and kisses, planking for the duration of “Brown Bear, Brown Bear”, moms singing nursery rhymes as they use their resistance bands and more! Our instructors arrive each day with a functional, total-body conditioning workout designed for moms with kids in tow which means an arsenal of puppets, bubbles, games and songs which allow the moms to leave class feeling connected, successful and energized! No more mama guilt! This class is all about self care in a supportive and encouraging environment. After all of our classes it’s the kids turn to play! We host weekly themed playgroups for the little ones and when we are outside the kids head to the playground. The moms with little ones get to hang out on the mats and blankets and connect and really make it a full outing each morning.
Which class is the most popular?
Our Stroller Strides and Stroller Barre classes are definitely the most popular as they are the backbone to FIT4MOM. However, our Body Back program which is our moms only 8 week results based high intensity interval program and our Run Club provide great opportunities for moms who have returned to work or no longer have stroller aged children to take their fitness level to the next level and stay connected to our FIT4MOM Village!
Any interesting tales from the trenches mixing young ones and exercise?
I love this question because no class is ever the same, just like parenting young kiddos! A Stroller Strides or Stroller Barre class is never complete without spilled snacks, a fussy baby, a tired toddler, a sleep deprived mama, a mom who needs to pause their workout to nurse or feed their baby, some spit up or the occasional tears, you name it, we’ve seen it. Beyond the tough moments, you will see kids imitating the exercises and stretches that we did in class, an instructor rocking a fussy baby so that mama can get her workout in, little ones cheering their moms on (or telling them to run faster), little ones meeting and looking forward to seeing their best buddy, and some genuine mom and baby bonding! That’s what makes our classes so unique and special! Motherhood is hard! We are all moms (instructors included) and we get it! We pride ourselves on creating a safe space for all moms and their little ones to come together, support one another and truly provide the strength for motherhood all while knowing that #themotherhoodisreal.