Ashley Brewster is currently the only female personal trainer at Fitness 19 on Richmond Road, and has attracted an all-female clientele.
And although she has worked as a personal trainer for only seven years, the Berea native’s passion for fitness began much earlier.
“I’ve been in the fitness industry since high school. It’s a passion of mine,” Ashley said. “I’ve also competed in figure competitions.”
Ashley’s clients currently range from age 22 to 70, and she personalizes each program to suit individual needs and goals.
“Every program I do is different per their issue and skill set,” she said. “Every client is different to me.”
Ashley guides each of her clients through a 30-minute session two to three times a week.
To keep her clients motivated, she mixes things up with meal plans, themed workouts and different styles of exercise like Tabata, a type of high intensity interval training.
In addition, the gym uses software developed by Ashley’s husband, Justin, called My Body Structure, where the trainers store stats, measurements and send clients diet and workout suggestions.
“Even if you don’t have a trainer you have the software at your fingertips,” she said.
But not every session is a work out. For Ashley’s clients, sessions can be therapeutic.
“Some days, people just need to talk or get something out,” she said. “I think that’s why I’ve been successful as a trainer. (My clients are) special, and I make each time we meet significant to their life.”
Ashley believes working with a personal trainer is invaluable, especially if you’re new to the gym.
“A lot of people are intimidated by the gym,” she said. “(As a trainer) You have to gain trust and your personalities have to click. A personal trainer helps people get into the gym on days they’re not working with us.”
Above all, “The number one benefit is accountability,” she said. And like any major lifestyle change, mindset is key.
“You have to have will power. You have to get fed up with something going on in your life; you have to have a life-altering change or something that wakes you up,” Ashley said. “Our lives are so fast-paced, but overall people feel better if they take that time for themselves.”
The most important advice Ashley gives her clients is to adopt a healthy diet.
“You cannot out-train a bad diet,” she said. “About 90 percent of the way your body reacts is due to diet. You have this one body, why not put the best stuff in there possible?”
Ashley added that it is important to lose weight slowly and keep it off. Each meal should consist of a protein, such as lean meat, a green vegetable and a complex carb (think whole grains, legumes, sweet potatoes) as opposed to a white carb.
Over the years, she has found personal training to have a reciprocal reward factor: Helping clients set and meet goals — whether that’s building muscle, losing weight or eliminating medications with the help of a doctor — and seeing clients get excited about working out and eating healthy.
“That’s what pushes me and makes me want to be a better trainer,” she said.