Chasing Goals With a Newborn

By Beth Janelle

I’ve always set different goals in life, wanting that success, no matter what the process to reach that goal was. Growing up as an athlete, I focused on competitive soccer, basketball, swimming, tennis, hiking 4000 Footers, and once I was in my 20s, I took up running half and full marathon road races. I threw a couple long-distance obstacle course races in the mix too. Pounding the pavement turned into dodging trees in the woods on trail runs with my dog. Individual trail racing turned into ultra relay races up mountains with friends. I loved pushing my body to the limit to see what I could actually achieve with hard work and whatever elements were thrown at me!

Speaking of “pushing”, in April 2019, I went through a drug-free childbirth, which HAD to be my limit, right? Once I was fully recovered from the labor and delivery, I felt like I could do almost anything! I spent some time dreaming up a new challenge to take on. Finally, I could see it. I would complete a Triathlon.

Completing a Triathlon was always on my radar growing up: I was a competitive swimmer, a marathon runner, and who doesn’t know how to ride a bike?! It was my next challenge, with plenty of roadblocks. Not only did I have to set up a grueling fitness program to be able to swim, bike, and run all back-to-back-to-back, but I wanted to train for this while caring for a 6 week old breastfed baby. Would I have time? Would I have the energy? Would I be so out of shape after being pregnant for the past 9 months?

In May 2019, I decided to jump right in and see what would happen. I signed up for a Sprint Distance Triathlon, just to get my feet wet, to see if I liked the sport. I knew I could swim the 500 yards, bike the 12 miles, and run 3.2 miles as long as I could find the time to train. Even though I was pregnant for the past 9 months, I still exercised during the entire pregnancy. I made sure to adjust my workouts so I was only doing what I could handle and what was healthy for my baby. I did several days of strength training per week, yoga, walking, lap swimming, and even jogging every couple of days. I felt amazing during those 9 months, and I trained this way until the day before my son was born. I was able to get back into exercising so quickly at an advanced level because I retained my fitness throughout my pregnancy!

First I created my own training program which included 5-6 days of workouts, with a mix of short runs, longer bike rides, one day in the pool, and a few strength and High Intensity Interval Training days. I was able to complete most of the workouts while my baby was napping (luckily he was a great sleeper most of the time), or after my husband got home from work. Times proved to be tough though, and sometimes I just wanted to lie on the couch snuggling with my newborn! And even though sometimes that’s what I did for part of the day, my son would cheerfully play with his toys next to me as I finished a run on the Craigslist-purchased treadmill in our basement. I would count my reps with him while I used weights! Pushups with kisses were his favorite. Training for this race with a baby was actually doable…and fun!

In September I was ready for the Sprint Triathlon, but the competition was looking stiff! Everyone had fancy bikes, aerodynamic helmets, and expensive wetsuits. My bike was Used off Amazon and I borrowed my wetsuit from a friend. I felt a little embarrassed, but that was pushing me harder to prove that I didn’t need all the fancy gear. I was fast, and I was going to trust my training. Afterall, if I could go through childbirth, this should be a cakewalk!

That day I finished the 500yd swim, 12mile bike, and 3.2 mile run with a time of 1:26:58, and I literally sprinted the whole time! I felt amazingly strong and powerful through every leg of the race. I finished 1st in my age group (30-34 female) and 6th female overall! I was so happy with the outcome, and I was craving more! However, Triathlon racing season was over for the New England area, so I had to look South! I found a Triathlon in Sarasota, Florida on January 5th which was a longer (but flatter) course than the Sprint race I had just done. I would compete in the Olympic Distance race, an exhausting 1 mile swim, 27 mile bike, and 7 mile run. The distances didn’t scare me, but the plane ride with a 9 month old baby did!

I signed up for the race and got back to my training. I upped by distances and just took it day by day, trying to figure out when I could squeeze in a workout between entertaining my baby and scooting off to work for a few hours. The holidays quickly flew by, much faster than some of those workouts (especially on days where I had a back-to-back bike and running session which regularly took over two hours). With the help and support of my friends and family, I was ready for my Olympic Triathlon!

I arrived in Florida with my husband and son just a couple days before the race so we could get acclimated. Everything was lining up perfectly; the weather was supposed to be ideal, my rental bike was all set to go, and none of our luggage got lost! However, I got little sleep the night before the race, not because of nerves, but because of a teething baby, sick with a cold, who could not stop crying. My husband ended up driving around with the poor baby at 3am just so I could get a couple hours of sleep before I had to wake up for race day!

When my alarm went off at 6am, the last thing in the world I wanted to do was a Triathlon. But after watching some Tom Brady Motivational Speeches on YouTube, my adrenaline was pumping, and I was ready to crush the competition! The weeks of training paid off, and even though I was sleep deprived and also sick with that same cold my son had, I went as fast as I possibly could have on each leg of the race, all while feeling indestructible! I finished the run strong, and crossed the finish line with a time of 2:47:30, and literally breastfed my baby on the ground immediately after.

I was so depleted, but my Mommy Superpowers were kickin’ and after all that, I still needed to feed my son!

I ended up placing 3rd for Females overall, and 1st place in my Age Group.

To say I was feeling accomplished is an understatement. I was on top of the world! Not only was I able to piece together a multi-sport training schedule in between caring for an infant son and working part-time, but I finished the race feeling so strong, so tough, and now so overjoyed to get back out there and do another one! It all just reaffirms that if you set a goal, you can figure out a way to make it happen for yourself, and if there’s a will, there’s a way!

Challenging myself to see what I’m capable of has always been something that I’m passionate about, and I will continue to dream up something new and crazier than what might seem possible. Another Triathlon? An Ironman Race? Giving birth to Twins? Who knows what my next challenge will be!


Please note that if you are considering any fitness goals before, during or after pregnancy, reach out to your physician to get the all clear and then to a trainer to assist you in your journey! 



By Beth Janelle

Personal Training/Fitness & Wellness Consultant 


Phone: 603-742-2163  x801

Education: NASM Certified Personal Trainer NASM Certified Corrective Exercise Specialist First Aid/CPR/AED Certified

Learn more about Beth here!


The Gift of Movement This Valentine’s Day

Feeling a bit hesitant on covering the kitchen counter with candy hearts, chocolate flowers, and an explosion of pink confetti for the family? Why not keep it simple and give the gift of movement? 

Valentine’s Day is the day of spreading love. Many say love and happiness go hand in hand, so how will you spark that love and happiness in your life and your families this Valentine’s Day? How will you spoil yourself and them, not only on this holiday but throughout the future? 

Stop for a moment and recall your last experience with movement of your body. Did you walk the dog, crawl around the house on all fours with your child on your back, go for a run after a stressful day, or attend a group fitness class with a friend? No matter what the movement was, take a moment to recall how your body felt after completing this movement. Not just physically but emotionally as well. 

We are all aware science has proven that exercise and movement release endorphins and feel good brain chemicals. It’s also been said to reduce the stress hormones cortisol and adrenaline in the body. We’ve all heard this many times, but have you actually stopped and reflected on how you really felt from the top of your head to the tips of your toes post movement? Did you feel like you could keep going for another mile, did you feel a sense of accomplishment Rocky Balboa famous climb style, did you feel so energized you came home from Zumba that you left your music on and danced around the kitchen making dinner. Was there a sense of happiness or uplifting energy? 

We all want to experience happiness as often as possible correct? We all want that feeling of content, joy, and gratitude. There are many methods in which we can seek this feeling and it varies from person to person. You can eat that Valentine’s Day chocolate heart and you will experience content and joy for about 8 seconds, but taking that jog before your significant other takes you out to a romantic Valentine’s dinner, or before your Galentine’s brunch, will leave you with more than just a euphoria of your tastebuds. It will leave you stronger, more confident, mentally clearer, and provide the opportunity for you to give your best self and that creates a love of yourself. When your self love game is strong, it shows. Friends take notice, significant others take notice, but most of all, your children take notice. You’re setting strong examples for them to follow. You’re not only ensuring your own healthy body, mind, and future but you’re offering them a chance at their own healthy body, healthy mind, and a healthy future. These all-in return create the sense of  joy and contentment we all constantly strive for, otherwise known as happiness. Give yourself and your family the gift of love and happiness this Valentine’s Day with movement. 



Jennifer Brown
Youth Programs Manager 

Jenny is a graduate of The University of Southern Maine with a Bachelors in Social Work and a Masters of Science in Education. She has previously taught Kindergarten and First Grade in two local elementary schools. She also brings experience in youth programming as both a Summer Camp Director and a Program Director.

Healthy Minds. Healthy Bodies. Healthy Futures. 


Looking for some new ideas today to get moving together? We’ve got plenty! Try one of our Challenges: Myzone MEPS Challenge or our Lap Pool “Swim Le Marathon De Paris”.  Enjoy some Group Fitness Classes while your children check out the Fitspot, Supervised Programs or take a swim together! Visit us at 23 Works Way in Somersworth or online at 😍❤️

Turn Resolutions into SMART Goals!

The decorations have been put away, the kids are back in school, and you are feeling motivated to start the new year ahead. January 1st rolls around every year and, like clockwork, you find yourself setting a handful of New Year Resolutions. “Get back into the gym”, “clean up my diet”, and “lose weight” are three resolutions that always seem to make their way to the top of the popularity list. While the intentions behind these resolutions are absolutely fantastic, there is one major adjustment that can be made that will aid in turning these resolutions into realistic goals. ­

That is specificity.

Did you know that people start falling off their New Year Resolutions right around January 12th?

Another eye-opening statistic according to a study by the University of Scranton states that only 8% of people actually achieve their New Year Resolutions! Two of the biggest explanations for why people fall off their resolutions are setting both unrealistic expectations and vague goals. When setting goals (at any point during the year) you should always ask yourself “Is this a SMART goal?”A SMART goal is a technique used to aid in creating and achieving both short and long term goals Your goals are considered SMART if you can check all of these boxes:

  • Is it SPECIFIC? Simply stating “get healthier” is not specific enough to hold you accountable. Are you looking to lose a certain amount of weight? Are you trying to get into a new exercise routine?
  • Is it MEASUREABLE? How are you going to measure the outcome of your goal? Are you shooting to drop 3% body fat? Are you aiming to increase your cardio frequency to 3-4 days per week?
  • Is it ATTAINABLE? Is this something that can be accomplished, or is it a lofty goal? Setting a weight loss goal of 50 lbs in 2 months would be unattainable and unrealistic. Getting to the gym 6 days per week may not be reasonable for your schedule.
  • Is it RELEVANT? Is this something that you really want to do? If you hate running and have ongoing joint pain, it would be silly to set a goal of “run a half marathon”. Your goals should be based on what you want!
  • Is it TIMELY? If your goal doesn’t have a deadline, how do you expect to reach this goal?

With all of this considered, let’s take our initial goal of “get healthier” and turn it into a SMART goal: By June 30th, I want to lose 10-15 lbs by cutting back on added sugars and getting 30 minutes of cardio 3 days per week. This is much more reasonable and gives you some wiggle room to indulge in your favorite sweets every once in a while instead of opting to cut out sugar completely.

Now that we are nearing the end of January, some of you may have trickled away from your resolutions or have fallen off track a little bit. What I am about to say might surprise you a little bit, but… THAT’S OKAY! You are human! We all fall off track more than we like to admit. There is no reason whatsoever that you should beat yourself up over that. Instead of allowing yourself to totally derail after you have gone off course, cut yourself some slack and do a mental check-in. Put pen to paper and map out the following sequence to get yourself back on board:

  • What was your goal? Was it SMART? Was it too lofty?
  • If you determine you set your expectations too high, readjust! Make it more specific, change up the time frame or the measurements.
  • Where did you go wrong? Did you set a weight loss goal of 10 lbs in 3 months but only lost 8? Maybe your workouts started to slack during the last month. How can you switch this goal up in the future to make it more attainable?
  • Write out a list of all the things you have accomplished. If you only lost 8 lbs instead of 10, honor that 8 lb weight loss! You earned it. Give yourself a break and pat yourself on the back for the things you DID do. You can’t climb a flight of stairs without taking the first step.
  • What is your inner voice telling you? You spend the most time with your own thoughts – you better make sure those are positive ones. Thank your body for all of its hard work and instead of telling yourself “I did what I said I wasn’t going to do. I am a failure”, tell yourself “I can do this. I have already done xyz”.

If you’re still going strong with your New Year Resolutions – that’s amazing and you should be very proud of yourself! If you have fallen off – tomorrow is a new day. Collect yourself, reset new goals for tomorrow, crush them, and then repeat the next day. Sometimes the biggest successes come from falling off a little bit and recognizing where you went wrong. Brush off the dust and get back on the horse! Happy Goal Setting!

-Jessica Machaby, MS, Certified Health Coach

Learn more about setting SMART goals and other wellness opportunities at The Works by visiting our website today. 

A Day in the Life, What a Dietitian Eats in a Day

We asked Holley Samuel, RD, LD, CPT what a day may look like for her. She graciously shared a snippet of what a workday has looked like for her. Check it out below!

This is how I eat most week days during the work week. On weekends or when I am not working things may look a little different. Also during different times of the year my taste buds change just like anyone else’s! By no means am I perfect, but I don’t believe in being perfect because that wouldn’t be any fun!

Please keep in mind that this is what I eat in a day and what I have found, through a lot of trial and error, what works best for my body and its needs. You should always discuss your needs and nutrition habits with your registered dietitian so that you are catering to what works for you!

Breakfast is usually between 6-7am:

Nearly every morning for the past several years, I’ve started my day with oatmeal. My favorite combination is: old fashioned oats, Wyman’s of Maine wild blueberries, 2% milk, 1 scoop of Vital Proteins collagen powder to support my joints in the training I do as an endurance athlete (and to support hair skin and nails too of course!), a hefty scoop of Teddy’s natural peanut butter, and a healthy amount of cinnamon mixed in! I try to make time in the morning to sit down and enjoy breakfast, as it sets the tone for my day. 


Coffee at 10am:

Sometime mid morning on most days of the week, I will make myself an iced coffee. I enjoy using a store bought cold brew with any flavor of the Bliss creamers. These creamers are great if you like traditional flavored coffee creamers but don’t want any of the hydrogenated oils or high fructose corn syrups!

Mid morning snack is usually around 11am:

Between breakfast and lunch I sometimes need a morning snack, especially if my exercise for the day happened in the morning. Chocolate hummus and an apple or rice cakes are a quick and easy go-to that are satisfying and provide plenty of fiber to keep me full until lunchtime.

Lunch is usually between 12-2pm:

For lunches I either have a salad like the one pictured above, or leftovers from the night before! I try to keep easy things on hand to prep for lunches or prepare extra dinner for leftovers so that I have a balanced lunch to eat most days. This salad has Little Leaf Farms lettuce (go try it if you haven’t yet! I find it at Hannaford or Market Basket), carrot, cucumber, craisins, walnuts, sundried tomatoes, chick peas, and chicken! I like using bolthouse farms dressings or just regular olive oil and balsamic vinegar. Adding a dash of dried basil, oregano, and parsley also helps spice up salads!

Mid-afternoon snack + kombucha is between 3-5pm:

Some days mid-afternoon or with lunch I like to have a kombucha as a pick me up! I am not a huge fan of the taste or smell of yogurt, so I like to get my probiotics in through kombucha! Since adding kombucha to my diet over the past few years, I’ve found my digestion improved and I rarely catch the common cold anymore. I usually have 2-3 bottles a week.

Afternoon snacks are some of my favorite! I often get a sweet tooth by 3pm and no one wants to see me “hangry” at work. Perfect Bars are my favorite energy bars because they are peanut or almond butter based, which is very filling and satisfying. This walnut brownie flavor it my favorite! Usually I make energy bites or energy balls for the week, but this week I was running short on time and these bars were on sale at Hannaford- a Perfect Bar a day keeps the “hanger” away!

Dinner is around 8-9pm:

Most days of the week I eat dinner between 8-9pm before heading to bed by 10pm. I absolutely must meal prep or keep easy to cook things on hand because of my schedule. This week, I cooked up quinoa, roasted sweet potatoes, and some chicken to have on hand to make bowls and salads with. I keep steam-able veggies, avocados, canned beans, condiments, and hummus on hand to add more flavor and fiber as well! This bowl came together in under 5 minutes and clearly my chocolate lab, Hazel, wanted some of the action too!


Tea at 9:30pm:

Last but not least, some immunity tea! My mother-in-law makes this for herself and shared her recipe with me! I combine ginger and chamomile tea+ elderberry concentrate+ honey. If you are trying to fight off any germs, this tea may not be a bad idea. It tastes amazing too as a bonus!



Water? Yes please! 

Hydration, hydration, hydration! I am not as great as keeping myself hydrated during the winter months as I am in the summer months. A key player in my hydration game is this cup! It holds 30 oz of water (I got it off Amazon along with the stainless steel straw- save the turtles!), and I make myself drink two of these while I am at work. This ensures I am getting at least 60 oz of water at work, not counting any other water I may drink at home (usually 1-3 more glasses). I have also found that everything tastes better through a straw, which is why I gravitated towards this cup! 

What’s your day like? We’d love to hear from you! 

Quick Healthy Snacks for your Kids!

We all know the impact that a busy family lifestyle can have on maintaining a healthy diet. On the one hand, a quick bag of chips when you’re rushing out the door seems like the easiest solution, but when it comes to your family, it’s important to weigh the consequences that unhealthy choices can have on long-term health. Although it may seem difficult to stray from the easy, pre-made solutions you can buy in the center aisles of any grocery store, the health benefits of nutritious foods and snacks are well worth the tiny bit of extra work. With a few of the following tips, making healthy foods will not only be fun and easy, but most importantly delicious! Here are a few helpful tips to get your kiddos eating those healthy snacks.

Step One: Meal Prep. Yes, I said it. Although our weekends fill up quickly, this is typically the best period during the week to set aside some time to prepare food. Now, I know many of you may be rolling your eyes and saying, “Absolutely not, we don’t have time for that,” but I promise you- it is well worth it. Like the start of any new habit, the first few weeks are the toughest and require diligence and dedication to initiate this lifestyle change. But think of it this way: an hour or so of meal prep at some point over the weekend allows extra time for read aloud before bed, or an extra 20-30 minutes of self-care time for after the kids are asleep and you’ve just had a long day doing your own thing. That time at night you used to spend making lunch sides can now be spent with your feet up, beverage in hand, to help you unwind. Get creative with your new-found time! Not only will this give you more personal time, but it will also help grow healthy children. Take it slow; start with prepping snacks for one or two days of the week, and see how your evolution as a meal prepper unfolds. It is also helpful to keep a folder in your kitchen with recipes, so that you have everything in one place. If you are switching between magazines, cookbooks, and recipes on your computer, it will get confusing and take much longer.

So, to start, here are a few recipes for those kids that like to push their fruit and vegetables to the side of their plate each night and refuse those “yucky’’ food groups. These ideas can help make healthy food fun for the kids! Every fun shape, animal, or face created increases the chances that your child will take a bite. Take a chance and relish in the rewards.

Frozen Blueberry Bites
2 ingredients – does it get any simpler? And the best part: it tastes like a frozen dessert!

All you will need to prep these quick, on-the-go friendly snacks are yogurt, blueberries, and a freezer. You can use your favorite choice of yogurt: flavored or plain. Drop the desired amount of blueberries into the yogurt and fish out with a toothpick. Place the yogurt covered blueberry on cookie sheet lined with parchment paper and place in freezer.

Pull out on a hot day for a quick snack during your swim break or bring a cooler filled with them for your next picnic.

Carrot Stars
A great alternative to chips and only 4 ingredients! This recipe does require oat flour. If you don’t have oat flour readily available, you can create your own oat flour by grinding oats in a food processor. It is so easy, and it takes seconds.
You will need
• 200g grated carrots (around 1 1/2 packed cups)
• 1/2 cup water
• 70 g grated cheddar cheese (1/2 cup)
• 2 eggs
• 4 tbsp oat flour

1. Pre heat oven to 180C / 350F
2. Mixed the carrot and water in a bowl, cover and microwave on high for 3 mins
3. Drain the carrots and then place them on a clean cloth / absorbent paper and squeeze out the liquid. (You need to get the carrots quite dry)
4. Place the carrots back in the bowl and mix with the remaining ingredients
5. Prepare a baking tray with baking paper or use a silicon baking sheet
6. Form star shapes of the mixture onto the sheet using a cookie cutter. (Mine were around 1/2 cm thick)
7. Bake for approx. 13 mins (until crispy on the sides)

Peanut Butter Cheerio Clusters
Super quick to throw in a bag and make for a great pre practice energy snack. In a bowl, melt 1/4 cup maple syrup (or honey) and 1/4 cup peanut butter in the microwave for about 30 to 45 seconds, until smooth. Add 3/4 cup Honey Nut Cheerios (or another lightly sweetened whole grain cereal) to the bowl and toss to coat. Dollop spoonfuls of the mixture onto a parchment-lined baking sheet. Set aside to harden, about 10 minutes. If your child has a nut allergy or you prefer to replace the peanut butter with a seed butter, a good substitution could be sunflower seed butter, pumpkin seed butter or raw tahini.

Cheesy Quinoa Crackers

They are great to add to lunchboxes or to have out and about for a snack.



•80g (1 cup) Quinoa Flakes
• 1 tbsp Sesame Seeds
• 100g Butter
• 100g (1 cup) Cheddar Cheese grated
• 135g (1 cup) Spelt Flour
• 1/2 tsp Baking Powder
• 3 tbsp Milk
1. Preheat Oven to 180C / 350f and line a baking tray with baking paper.
2. Add the quinoa flakes and sesame seeds to a food processor and pulse until finely chopped.
3. Add the butter, cheese, flour and baking powder and pulse until crumbly. Add the milk and continue to process until the mixture comes together.
4. Gently knead the dough on a floured surface and then roll, between sheets of baking paper, until approx 5mm thick.
5. Cut out desired shapes using cookie cutters.
6. Bake for approx 12 mins, or until lightly golden.
7. Allow to cool for approx 2 mins before transferring to racks to completely cool.


Recipes shared from: and
Other great resource includes:

Jennifer Brown, Youth Program Manager
Jenny is a graduate of The University of Southern Maine with a Bachelors in Social Work and a Masters of Science in Education. She has previously taught Kindergarten and First grade in two local elementary schools. She also brings experience in youth programming as both a Summer Camp Director and a Program Director.

The Journey to Becoming an Instructor: Jill’s Story

Thank-you, Jill for sharing your inspiring journey!


Written by Jill Thorpe


I started my journey as a member of The Works.


I was recovering from a back injury, was 60lbs overweight and battling other health issues. I came to The Works looking for a way to get moving and improve my health.  I quickly found my way to group fitness and I never looked back.


What I found was so much more than I expected. I found a community full of support, encouragement and friendship. 


The other members and the instructors were a big part of the driving force that helped keep me coming back for more. My love for health and fitness grew more and more everyday.  Losing weight and regaining my health was the most amazing feeling. Eventually I found myself traveling to  Pennsylvania  to start my first certification. Within a few months I was certified as a Les Mills Body Vive/Tone instructor.  I felt so fortunate to be able to share my passion with other people. I quickly began studying to gain my Ace Group Fitness Certification. I wanted to learn as much as I could and then share what I have learned with everyone that comes to my classes.


I found my niche in HIIT and endurance training. I enjoy a total body challenge mixing cardio and strength in various ways through use of many types of equipment. I love teaching classes that everyone, no matter where they are in their journey can participate in.

I continue to teach my first certification, Tone every Sunday morning at 8:30am and Wednesdays at 6:40pm. I teach FIT on Monday at 4:50pm, Fortitude at 6:40pm on Tuesdays and my NEW class Circuit Training on Friday at 4:30

If you look into my classes you find a wide variety of members. I enjoy being able to connect and teach to everyone who takes my classes. I am so lucky to be teaching at The Works. 

Check out the full class schedules here

Celebrating Health- Member Spotlight

Meet Bertie. 99 Years Young. Happy Birthday! 


Here’s Bertie’s Fun Facts:

Some of her Past Activities:
Swam everyday 
Walked the beach
Played golf at 40
Started free weight training in 2012


Favorite Things:
Likes to go out to eat
Likes to go to ball games
Likes all sports
Likes to watch sports with family

Interesting Tidbit:
Bertie’s husband was in the Battle of Bulge and went missing. Had to look for an ad in the newspaper Sid go to 125 Broadway in NY to get help.

More about Bertie: 
Gets her nails done every 2 weeks
Gets her hair done once per week
Exercises at The Works two days a week 


“Bertie has been participating in personal training since 2013. She has worked with a few different trainers during this time. She trains with Nick Moore and I occasionally train Bertie as well. Everyone loves Bertie! I know that a consistent theme with all who train Bertie is….”Bertie you need to slow down” you will then hear a chuckle from her and hear her say “It’s hard for me to slow down!” Bertie is a hard worker and will do whatever is asked of her without complaint!” -Mary Defreze, Assistant Fitness Director

“Bertie is a great learner and has a very precise attention to detail for every exercise she does. If I’m telling her to sit upright and retract the shoulder blades, she does a great job! Even at 99 years old she’s always trying to improve, periodically asking me if she’s doing the exercise with proper form. It’s always easy to do my job when I have a client with a positive attitude that enjoys conversation, and Bertie is no exception to that! When I finally get her to take a break between exercises, she has a never ending list of stories that I’ve had the pleasure of listening to. Never a dull moment when you’re training Bertie.” -Nick Moore, Personal Trainer 








We Celebrated with Bertie for her 99th year!

Happy Birthday, Bertie! 

Back to School with Jenny Brown

Meet Jennifer Brown, Youth Program Manager at The Works!
Jenny is a graduate of The University of Southern Maine with a Bachelors in Social Work and a Masters of Science in Education. She has previously taught Kindergarten and First grade in two local elementary schools. She also brings experience in youth programming as both a Summer Camp Director and a Program Director.

Whether you’re jumping for joy and have the backpacks already stocked or you’re not quite ready to leave the waterfront yet….the new school year is quickly approaching or has started. Before long, the ice cream truck’s music will fade,stores will practically be paying us to buy school supplies, and our savored daylight evening hours will withdraw. We’ll be sprinting to the bus stop, racing our kiddos to and from sports, music lessons, and other extracurricular activities, all while attempting to carve out time to complete homework and eat dinner as a family.

As a parent you know that life tends to move rather intensely during the months of September-June. There are many ways to prepare yourself and your children for a successful school year. Here are some activities you can do now, and in the weeks ahead:

The strongest piece of guidance I can offer as a former elementary teacher is to start SLOWLY bringing the school year routine back into daily life. Begin to bring meal times, bed times, and morning routines back in line with your school year schedule. If you begin early and enter this at a slow pace, the kick back tends to decrease and the transition is easier. Getting enough sleep and having a structured weekday routine will contribute to and result in a student’s positive daily outlook and performance. 

Another good activity to prepare children for the upcoming school year is to incorporate learning into your end of summer adventures. Set off on a fun adventure together and slip in some learning at the same time. This adventure can be indoors or out: from a small scale science experiment in the kitchen to the Boston Museum of Science, calculating the mileage and time of your next road trip to the lake, or freshen up their vocabulary with a vacation journal. Our minds are like muscles: just as we do here at The Works Family Health and Fitness before a workout, warm up those muscles! 

The last piece of helpful advice I might offer is to set some clear, achievable goals for the school year. By setting both academic and personal goals, students will not only improve their performance in school – they will also gain confidence, motivation, and pride in their accomplishments. 

Here at The Works Family Health and Fitness we have a few school year programs that can help contribute to a happy, healthy, and successful school year. 

Our Clubhouse Kids Program is a structured morning program for Preschool aged children. This program is open to potty trained children ages 4 & 5 years old. It runs Monday, Wednesday & Friday 9:00am-10:30am 

`This program features a variety of fun activities including stories, arts and crafts projects, games, snack time and active play in the gym or on the playground. Parents must remain in the building. Children may be enrolled for as many mornings as desired, in any combination, on a first come first serve basis. 

Our After School Program gives your children an active, healthy routine afterschool throughout the school year. Send them to The Works and help them stay active and fit! From the moment your child walks through the door the activities begin. Children will partake in fun, engaging, heart-pumping games and activities that keep them exercising without realizing it. Join us everyday after school for gym games, outside games, swimming, homework help, specialty classes and fun. This program is open to children Kindergarten through Fifth Grade. 


  • This program is state licensed and tax deductible
  • Transportation Provided for Somersworth Students


General Daily Schedule

  • Participants will be divided by age each day.
  • Upon arrival each participant will take part in an active play activity and have their healthy snack. 
  • Homework time will be designated during the program in which help will be provided.
    • Once homework is completed participants will have the option to swim or take part in other active games or projects.
    • This program runs every school day.

Do you and your child need to get your 60 minutes of activity a day in but do not need an after school program? We can help!  Consider enrolling your child in our Supervised Programs while you work out. Plenty of activity occurring in our Supervised Gym, Supervised Swim, and Fit Spot!  Visit our link to determine which program best suits your child! 

We look forward to sharing many active and healthy experiences with your children during the upcoming school year. 

Staying Accountable

“It seems like just a year ago when I made my first trip back into the Works. Oh yeah, it has been a year Last year on February 14 I came back to the Works after a long absence. When I came back I decided to enter a “check in” on Facebook. As a joke I claimed that this was “one day in a row.” To my surprise several of my friends commented and gave me support. So day one, turned into day two, which turned into day three and on and on.

The staff at the Works is AWESOME!! And the others that go there are terrific too! It doesn’t take long to get to know the people there. I am part of the early morning crew who wait outside the door for 5AM to have the gym open.”Member Doug B (see more below)

One-year ago this morning, as a joke, he posted that check-in on Facebook when he came in after some time away. We noticed and acknowledged him… now, past 52 weeks  he continues to show up bright and early almost daily AND CHECKS IN ON FACEBOOK! We look forward to his early morning check-in and our Welcome Desk staff welcomes him, too!  

Congratulations, Doug on your consistency for AN ENTIRE YEAR! Looking forward to where this journey takes you! 

Our Personal Training Manager Weighs in on Accountability: 

We understand; most people do not enjoy exercise. This places an important emphasis on accountability and how you can stay on track to progressing towards a happier and healthier you. Most of us need something or someone to help keep us going even when we feel like giving up. This accountability can come from a number of different sources. A lot of my clients use their MyZone belt’s to help ensure they are working out at a safe yet effective intensity, all the while being able to see what their friends are doing for exercise. Many times, they will also rely on myself to help keep them motivated even when they are not working with me. 

Another effective means of staying accountable is by finding an exercise partner. This can be someone you physically enter the gym with, or it could be someone you know will check in with you to ensure you aren’t missing those crucial exercise days. This exercise partner could also be someone you simply attend a small group training or Group Exercise class with. You always have the option to utilize technology which has proven to be an effective way to stay on track. Whether it be checking into your gym via social media like Facebook, or utilizing health and specific fitness apps like MyFitnessPal, the tools are available to you!

How do you stay accountable?!” 


Corey Bastianelli BS, CSCS, NSCA-CPT
Personal Training Manager
The Works Family Health & Fitness Center
P: 603-742-2163 ext. 809


Member Testimonial Shared by Doug B.

April 9, 2017

“It was the middle of February and I was sick and tired of being sick and tired. Like many people I have struggled with my weight and food addiction for years.

I have held a membership at The Works for several years and have gone through periods of time when I came there regularly and a lot of times when I didn’t.

The evening of the February 13th by God’s grace I decided that tomorrow I would go to the gym. So I got up early in on the 14th. Packed up my gym bag and headed out.

My wife was a huge inspiration for me to get started. I added her to my membership last year and since September she had been going there daily.

She walks the track above the basketball courts. Even through her health issues she has been so faithful to go every day and says she feels stronger for doing it. So what was my excuse??

As I went in I was greeted by the young lady at the desk as she checked me in. There was no condemnation for not having been there in probably close to a year except to bring my grandson to the pool occasionally on Sundays.  I was welcomed as though I had always been going there!

The staff at The Works is awesome! Everyone treats you like you are important!!

As I entered on that day I decided to post a “check in” on Face Book. I thought I would make a little joke about showing up at the gym today. So on my “check in” I wrote, “Well here I go again, this makes one day in a row!” Some of my friends responded to that post by clicking the “like” button and writing positive comments.

That first day I did cardio only. I walked on the track for about 10 minutes and then walked on the treadmill for probably another 20 minutes. But I did it!! I made it there which is the biggest challenge for someone like me and perhaps for a lot of people.

…My experience at The Works is awesome!! I know there are other gyms that might be less expensive on the surface level; however, when you see the value that The Works brings there is no doubt that this is a much better deal. Comparing The Works to those $10 a month gyms is like comparing a Prius to a Cadillac there just is no comparison.

The Works offers so much that the other places can’t even compare to, like racquetball courts, tennis courts in the spring and summer, cardio and spinning classes and so much more!  My grandson loves the pool! I taught him how to swim there as I have been bringing him there since he was 3 years old, that was 6 years ago.

The staff there are all professional and extremely helpful! I go in at 5AM every day and I am now part of the early morning group of people who stand at the front door waiting for it to open. It’s amazing how fast you can make friends there and get to know the others who are on their own journeys as well.

I can’t recommend The Works enough to people. You have to see the whole facility to see the real value they bring!!

February 14th, 2018: One Year Anniversary Wrap Up

I can’t tell you how much better I feel! What it makes a difference it makes to exercise daily! I still have goals to meet with weight loss and nutrition but my daily exercise at the gym is a necessity! The staff at the Works is AWESOME!! And the others that go there are terrific too! It doesn’t take long to get to know the people there. I am part of the early morning crew who wait outside the door for 5AM to have the gym open.