Wellness centers encourage members to own their fitness

Group classes, variety of workout options keep working dad of two coming back

Sanford Wellness Center member smiles with an inspirational poster of a mountain climber behind him.

Jason Ahrendt has been a member of the Sanford Wellness Center for more than 33 years. In that time he has seen exercise trends come and go but he keeps showing up. He keeps exercising.

The benefits have always been there. Plus a staff that he says “is amazing” knows him by name.

“I stay for the people,” he said. “I’ve met a lot of good friends here, whether it’s in the group fitness classes or at the swimming pool or just lifting weights. It’s been a great place for me over the years.”

Ahrendt has owned a State Farm Insurance agency in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, for 21 years. He’s married and has two kids, and he and his family have made the Wellness Center part of their lives.

The facility offers a diverse array of group classes and fitness options with aquatics, personal trainers and triathlon training available to all ages and for all levels of fitness goals. Ahrendt has made the most of the variety over the years, as has his family.

“I’ve been part of early-morning group fitness class circuit-training off and on for the last 15 years,” he said. “It’s a great group of people right around the same age range. It’s fun because we can push each other — nobody gets a day off. The camaraderie makes it worthwhile to get out of bed in the morning.”

Activity at the Wellness Center slows down some during the summer months with outdoor fitness options more accessible. But, rain or shine, Ahrendt can get his exercise in and do it around all the other things in his life.

“One of the cool things is that most of the people I work out with do it year-round,” he said. “Nobody takes the summers off or the winters off. Consistency has been the key for me to stay in shape, not to mention that it’s a great way to start the day. It helps me at work and with my family — it helps all the way around.”

That consistency is not an accident. The wellness center’s wide range of offerings has given Ahrendt a way to avoid the staleness that can spell the end of fitness goals for many.

“It helps out tremendously with lifestyle,” he said. “I might go a couple months where I’m swimming laps in the pool and then I’ll switch it up and do circuit training. I can keep things fresh here.”

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Posted In Healthy Living, Sioux Falls, Sports Medicine