GENOA – Home at last.
Jennifer Jones breathes easily, knowing her fitness studio, J'Studio, has settled into its new home at 114 N. Washington St.
It's not just the yoga talking. Compared with the former space at 113 N. Genoa St., it's about 300 square feet bigger, there's brand-new flooring, a fresh coat of paint and bright lights.
"I've loved it," said Jones, who's been a fitness instructor 18 years. "It's got a modern look now, and it feels up to date."
She's come a long way from the 400-square-foot garage space where she opened her first studio Nov. 1, 2011. She admits she's had a lot of help.
Even that humble garage space was brought to life by her husband, Chad, and her brother, Rob. She painted a Zumba logo on the wall, and away she went.
Moving to the new space was frenetic, Jones admits, and the first classes were taught Oct. 3.
"We couldn't have done this without so many people's help, without our husbands' help," she said. "All of a sudden, it was 5:30 Tuesday night, and I had to teach a class. I kept freezing. I couldn't believe we were finally here."
"We made it," longtime local yoga instructor Lisa Ruehl chimed in, cracking both of them up.
The third instructor, Jen Weech, couldn't resist teaching Zumba in the new space before going on maternity leave. She guided her last class Oct. 10.
The studio also offers barre sculpt, stretch, group fit, power hit and senior classes, and has adjusted its tagline from "A women's solution to health and fitness" to "Your solution to health and fitness." A lot of Ruehl's male yoga students followed her when she joined J'Studio about 1 1/2 years ago, and many of Jones' female senior students started bringing their husbands along.
The more classes you take at the studio, the more affordable the rate, which can be as inexpensive as $7.65 per class – unless you buy an unlimited monthly pass, which runs $150 a month and gets you access to all 52 classes in a month, shaking out to $2.88 per class if you take all of them.
For those who need a flexible plan, punch cards cost $100 and get you 10 classes over a 12-week span.
For Jones, fitness is priceless. She said Thursday that she was overweight in high school, and solved part of the problem – about 40 pounds' worth – by fixing her diet.
"But I realized there was something else I needed to do, and I was 18 when I started working out religiously," she said.
"No, I couldn't see myself not doing it. That feeling you get back from people, when you help them find their fitness, it's an incredible feeling."
That's why she hasn't worked a day in six years.
"In order to give it your all, you have to love your job," Jones said. "I'm not working. I'm hanging out with my girls."
And guys. Don't forget the guys.