What feels better than a great workout? Lately, I’ve been loving the classes at my local gym, Adventure Health & Fitness, which was started by fitness gurus Michael Smith and Laura Powell. It’s super-challenging, incredibly fun and makes me feel strong and confident. We sat down with half of the AHF team, Laura Powell, and asked her to share a bit about her program. Thanks, Laura!
A conversation with Laura Powell, the co-founder of AHF Fitness.
How did AHF start?
AHF began like most ideas: With notes scribbled on a piece of paper, passion, a love for helping others, dedication, and hard ass work. Blood, sweat and tears and over 10 years of training and coaching clients to achieve their best.
AHF isn’t a singular “class,” but rather total body fitness and health training. Creating a fit, strong body and mind. AHF isn’t solely about weight loss, it’s about improving body composition through fat loss and creating a fit, toned body and feeling comfortable in your own skin. Confidence!
We also began AHF to honor our mothers, Fran and Donna, for raising us by themselves while overcoming much adversity. It’s our “Why.” We want women and moms to feel amazing about themselves, and have the confidence to show strength and happiness in and out of the gym.
What is a “metabolic workout” and why do you teach it?
In simple terms, it’s a total body workout that works all 3 phases of the body:
1. The muscles through resistance training (weights)
2. The core, abs and stomach
3. Heart-rate (cardio). The cardio is non-traditional cardio: Conditioning ropes, bodyweight cardio moves, sled pushes, hitting a big tire with a sledgehammer, and way more cool stuff.
Many of these heart-rate moves work the muscles and core at the same time. A win-win-win! The essence of a metabolic workout is working the entire body while the heart-rate remains elevated throughout the entire workout. It never returns to resting, and while this happens, you continue to work your muscles through resistance training (with kettlebells, weighted ropes, sandbags…just to name a few).
What’s your favorite move to teach women?
Besides to feel strong and confident, to have grit, to go the distance, and while rocking any outfit they choose? We’re hell-bent on helping women reach their potential and getting it done, no matter the obstacle.
We love teaching women the kettlebell swing. The swing gets the heart rate cranking, works the lower and upper body muscles, and hits both the glutes (booty) and stomach.
What’s your health philosophy?
Reducing stress, getting quality sleep, taking greens, simplifying, and being consistent with healthy habits are foundations of our philosophy. Keeping things as simple as possible is key because in today’s world simplification creates consistency.
Moderation is also a key principle. We have a 90/10 rule: 90% of the time eat clean, workout consistently, limit sugar, limit alcohol and other non-healthy lifestyle items.
10% of the time allow your cheat meals. Allow yourself to not stress and over plan. Get outside, take a few days off and refresh.
What’s Bobbi’s favorite move?
Jam ball slams! She’s inspires me when I see her do them! I admire Bobbi because she genuinely desires to push beyond her limits, release stress, always pushes to greatness, and stir up the muscles so the metabolism doesn’t get lazy.
Where does “adventure” come in?
Adventure is about not going through the motions. It’s about variety and fun with working out. It’s about never doing the same exact workout twice at AHF. It’s about constant evolution in mind, body and fitness. Adventure is about feeling amazing about yourself so you get the most out of life. I believe that getting out of your comfort zone is how you create different results.
Adventure also epitomizes working out anywhere: Indoors, outdoors, on the floor, on a big tire, hanging from a rope and is about pushing through self-imposed limits during every workout.
What exercise do people dread the most?
This one’s easy: BURPEES!
The burpee is when you hop down on the floor, kick your feet out, perform a push-up, hop your feet back in and jump up with your hands above your head. It gets your heart rate going strong, while working the entire body. It hurts, but it’s incredibly effective.
How do you keep people motivated?
During the workouts we not only train and coach clients, we bring the energy and passion. We love what we do and we don’t fake it, we keep people motivated during workouts with creativity and energy. By coaching them, not being a drill sergeant. By caring.
Outside of the workouts we do a ton through social media, our blog, and we send 2-3 emails per week with inspiration for clients to live healthy and stay fit. The emails also include tons of real-world eating advice.