When talking about Gainesville Health and Fitness (GHF), much of the attention is towards the culture of the staff and our dedication to our members. However, one area we don’t highlight enough is how great our members are, too.
This week I’d like to spend some time recognizing our members and how important they are to our success by highlighting one member specifically. Billie Bob has been a member of our clubs since 2003 and has been devoted to our clubs ever since. In fact, she has expressed so much love for our clubs that we have recently made her an honorary employee with the self-given title of, “The Hostest with the Mostest.”
In her position, she goes around the club making sure that everyone has a smile on their face by passing out smoothies, candies, stories and best of all, her hugs. We asked her a few questions about her experience with GHF so far and here is what she said.
GHF: In what ways do you think GHF stands out as a health club?
BB: Well it was after my husband passed away. We had been married 53 years, so it was a big loss to me. I was getting depressed and started thinking how I had always wanted to join GHF, so I said, “What are you doing to yourself?” I got my rear end up and went on over and talked to the club staff, but I didn’t join right away — I left. I got home and thought, “Now you were going to join, why didn’t you join?” So the next day I came back in, and Lorrie signed me up. I have made so many good friends here, and have encouraged many others who have had problems in their lives too, to come to the club because GHF will help you in any way they can.
GHF: What are some small things GHF does that makes your experience great?
BB: I’m grateful to have chair classes for senior citizens. I feel that I’m an advocate for GHF for senior citizens and to set a good example for younger people to come to the club, because the time you put into your fitness now plays such a beneficial role in your life later on.
I just love everything — it’s really true, and that’s why you see me there so much. I do some circuit training, because I have a little arthritis in my shoulder, but I really get the most out of doing my classes (Pilates, Zumba, yoga, stretch and power cardio classes). I really love everything about it and do all that I can. You know, I try to encourage other people not to just sit there and complain about not feeling good — don’t just sit home watching soap operas and eating potato chips.
GHF: What do you think other health clubs could learn from looking at GHF?
BB: Oh, so many things. The way they take care of the equipment and personnel. The friendliness of all the staff and members really makes this an overall wonderful place.
GHF: Why do stay a member of GHF?
BB: The best part is you meet so many nice people and the friendships you develop are just amazing. When people come up to me and tell me that I’m their inspiration and say, “You are the reason I come here, if you can do it at your age then I can do it,” all I say is “Thank you.” If I can be an inspiration to someone or just help somebody else out, then that just makes me feel fantastic — doing something for somebody else that is not myself.
I’ve heard of many people who go to other health clubs while visiting family members or who move away and come back, and they all say how there is nothing else that compares to the experience at GHF. Personally it has helped me in more ways than others. If you want to be happy and meet likeminded people, go to the gym and workout.