When the coronavirus pandemic forced 24 Hour Fitness member Amy Hennessey to work from home, like so many of us, she found herself working longer hours and becoming less active. For Hennessey, the timing was particularly bad because she had just started training with Fitness Manager Laurie Nielsen-Consiglieri. Fortunately, they forged a virtual connection that helped Hennessey through uncertainty to arrive at a healthier state.

As a child, Hennessey was active in gymnastics and ballet. Injuries caused some setbacks in her active lifestyle. But Hennessey remained active with her friends and when she was invited to an 8-mile fun run/walk, she agreed although she wasn’t accustomed to walking that far. A week after the event, Hennessey woke up with Bell’s Palsy—weakness on one side of her face. It was not the result of the walk, but it made her feel a little nervous about working out.

So, when a friend invited Hennessey to a Zumba party at 24 Hour Fitness, she was anxious and excited. After the class, she decided to try an assessment with a fitness coach. Hennessey found the accountability helpful, and working with a coach became part of her routine.

At the start of 2020, Hennessey was about to begin work with her new coach, Nielsen-Consiglieri—and then COVID-19 interrupted those plans. When Hennessey learned about the option of virtual personal training, she decided to try it and see if it would be a good fit for her.

“I needed to get everything back up and running,” says Hennessey. Finding the right space and figuring out alternatives to gym equipment took a little time, but she began working with Nielsen-Consiglieri using items such as soup cans for weight.

Since April, 2020, Hennessey says she lost weight but more importantly, she began feeling stronger. “I realized working on becoming the healthiest version of myself helps me be safer,” she says, against COVID-19 and anything else that could present a health risk.

Hennessey also created her own workout space in her home. As she and Nielsen-Consiglieri continued their work, Hennessey’s posture and form have improved, and she’s even been able to understand and address issues caused by a childhood injury to her foot. Hennessey says, “I feel like I’ve made 5,000 percent progress even through a crazy year.”

Photo credit: Amy Hennessey