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Snow no excuse among those bent on exercising

January 02, 1999|By BRENDAN KIRBY

Snow kept many people away from Tri-State area health clubs on Saturday, but the truly dedicated did not let the weather stop them on the day after the holiday season.

"There's always temptation not to come to the gym," said Boyd Michael, who was walking on a treadmill Saturday afternoon at Fitness Priority in Hagerstown. "It used to feel good to come to the gym. Now, I just feel older."

Michael, 41, said he had not been to the gym for the last several days because of the holidays and was eager to get back into the routine.

Hagerstown resident Mark Hahn, 30, also was looking to put the holidays behind him.

"Trying to work off all the alcohol we drank over the weekend," he said.

Fitness centers normally enjoy a surge in memberships in January, as guilty holiday partiers try to work off extra calories and others attempt to stick to New Year's resolutions.

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Brenda Benner, a fitness instructor at the workout center said she saw both new people and people who have allowed to their workouts to lapse.

The snow did not appear to be much of a deterrent, she said.

"They were here. The manager called today and said we could close early if no one came, but we were busy," she said. "I've been busy all day. I saw some people today I haven't seen in awhile."

Tasha Tillman, an employee at Martinsburg (W.Va.) Health & Fitness, said the gym was more crowded Saturday morning than a typical weekend morning.

"Surprisingly, it's been pretty busy," she said. "I guess people had nothing to do (because of the snow) With all the New Year's resolutions, the Number 1 reason is to lose weight."

How long does that resolve last?

"I give 'em two weeks," said David Moss, an employee at Gold's Gym in Hagerstown.

Although the snow kept many people away on Saturday, Moss said he expects a wave this week.

"Pretty much all the cardio equipment will be packed by tomorrow," he said.

Shirley Moul, 43, said she came in to work out at the gym because her friend called. She said it was nice because so few people were there in the afternoon.

"We're dedicated in spurts," said her friend, Hagerstown resident Terri Huguenin, 45. "For me, I'm off, so I have more time. When you're off, you have to take advantage of it - even if the weather's not the best."

Other gyms were less crowded because of the weather. But Mark Myers, an employee at Absolut Fitness in Chambersburg, Pa., said it takes more than snow to stop some people.

"There's some people who are really into it. They come in all the time," he said.

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