I belonged to a fancy health club for two years but only went a handful of times. No one ever noticed that I didn't show up. And, when I did, I was hounded by "personal trainers" trying to sell me personal training packages. I also never really knew how to use all the equipment safely and in different ways to maximize results. I would watch other members use the health club's equipment and mimic them. So, you can imagine how surprised I was to eventually learn that I was exercising in a way that could cause me harm to my back and neck. In January 2012, I decided it would be better to have a real educated and certified professional trainer to make me accountable for my exercise program and guide me to reach my goals. Fitness Together (FT) far, far, far exceeded my expectations. I have lost 30 pounds in nine months and have dropped five dress sizes.* That was faster and 30 pounds more than I lost during my whole two years at the health club. The exercises that I do make me tone, strong and balanced. Alex, the owner, is warm and friendly and is always following my progress on a personal basis even though he is not my trainer. My professional trainer, Vlad, is outstanding because not only is he a very experienced personal trainer but he is extremely well versed in real nutrition and together these two new paths were a real game changer for me. Specifically, my weight stalled for a few weeks and Vlad asked me to kept a simple three-day food journal. He analyzed it and told me that while I was eating my 26 Weight Watcher points (I joined WW on my own) none of the foods were nutritious and satiating to satisfy my appetite. I was eating fat-free frozen yogurt, bags of "low-calorie" popcorn and prepared boxed foods. Those "foods" were filled with sugar that made me crave more sugar and man-made products that were not nutritious to strengthen and repair my body. Vlad encouraged me to read two books (that he did not author and FT does not sell) and that simple education changed my eating style forever more. Prior to FT, I thought exercise was getting off the couch and going to bed. Now, I exercise three times a week. I must say that in the nine months I have never repeated the same exercise routine even once. They have so many ways to use the equipment that you cannot possibly get bored. And unlike the health club, you don't pay a trainer to watch you run on the treadmill or cycle (while they are looking for new clients to sign up for personal training packages). All the FT trainers stay right with you, watching and guiding you to make sure you are in proper form to maximize your efforts and that you are doing it safely to prevent any injuries. They actually have a personalized planned routine ready for you every time you walk in the door and you will be able to immediately see results as your body is quickly toning up. Friends and family cannot recognize me today because of how much my face and body have changed.* The exercises are "functional" meaning that they actually apply to activities I do every day like carrying, lifting and bending. I travel a lot for work and FT has given me greater stamina to do more, for longer periods. FT also offers a free initial assessment where they really assess your current abilities and future capabilities. In sharp contrast, the health club just offered me a free pass to walk around by myself and use the equipment. A few last points. I am not related to any one at FT. FT does not sell any products (so I never have to be worried about trying to say "no" or caving in and buying anything I don't need or want). Ironically, I asked FT to sign up, they never asked me to sign up. Alex picks all the FT trainers (and he is very picky) so they are all highly qualified and I have worked with all of them. They really mean it; you experience Fitness Together! And, it is painless and profound!!