Amanda Sanders, Army spouse, takes multiple fitness classes weekly at Estep Physical Fitness Center. She lifted weights during the Jan. 16 Total Pump class.

January often brings an influx of new people to Fort Campbell’s eight physical fitness centers, but trainers and staff say New Year resolutions to lose weight or get in better shape aren’t always the answer.

For many, setting smaller, more realistic goals and finding new or enjoyable ways to exercise might pay off a lot more in the long run.

Megan Scales, fitness program specialist with Morale, Welfare and Recreation Sports Fitness and Aquatics, said sticking with a regimen past January is easier for those who set goals and then break them down so they can see the progress they make.

“You can have a large goal, but break it down into something that doesn’t overwhelm you,” Scales said. “Sometimes we have a large goal that we don’t break down all the steps we need to reach to meet that goal. It overwhelms us and we just quit and it can set us back even further than we were when we originally set that goal.”

She suggests making a calendar of workouts and meals. With the right mindset, weight loss, muscle gain, and other goals can be achieved.

“Maybe we don’t say ‘I want to lose five pounds this month,’” Scales said. “Maybe we say, ‘My goal for this month is to do some sort of physical exercise four times a week, each week this month.’”

She also suggests trying new things.

“Try to step out of your comfort zone, even if it’s just a baby step, to attempt something new and try something that maybe you didn’t take to in the past,” Scales said. “Maybe it just wasn’t your time. Maybe your time is now. Try to grab a friend to come with you. Sometimes, we just need that extra little boost to try something fun, something silly. Something might stick with you.”

With a wide variety of classes offered at the Staff Sgt. Eric B. Shaw and Estep physical fitness centers —and plans to expand and add classes soon – there is something for Soldiers, Families and retirees of all ages and fitness levels, Scales said.

Classes in session

Fitness class calendars that vary from month to month are listed on MWR’s website,, and Facebook page,

New classes are frequently added to match trends and keep people’s interest, Scales said.

January classes include Aqua FIT, TRX, cycling, Power Pump, Zumba, Tabata, Boot Camp, Power 60, Barre, Hip-Hop Fitness, Workout of the Day and boxing.

Classes cost $3 each. Participants also can purchase a $30 pass that allows them to take as many classes as they want in 30 days.

All classes can be modified for those who may have health issues or limitations.

“This is your workout, so we’ll make it functional to you,” said Sean Callahan, who teaches numerous fitness classes every week. “We don’t want them to hurt themselves. As they feel more comfortable, we’ll move them up.”

Callahan said clients who make resolutions to get in shape can “set themselves up for failure” if they have unrealistic expectations. He encourages people to set smaller goals and start off at a pace they can handle.

“If you have a huge goal and have a setback, it’s a discouragement,” he said. “Set smaller, more attainable goals.”MWR launched TRX this month, Scales said. TRX is a class in total resistance training that uses suspension

A kettle bell workout class also will be added later this month. Although fitness classes are only held at two physical fitness centers now, there are plans in 2020 to add more classes at fitness centers across post, she said.

“A lot of our group fitness classes have really picked up over the last couple weeks,” Scales said. “We’ve had more personal training packets come in and I’m sure it’s going to continue … We plan on expanding to more of the (physical) fitness centers on Fort Campbell throughout the year, just so we can reach a wider variety of the community.”

More information about upcoming classes will be available at a later time.

By early March, Scales expects classes will be scheduled at Cpl. Frank R. Fratellenico Physical Fitness Center.

“We’ll be offering boxing, TRX and a kettle bell fitness class there,” she said.

TRX was added this month.

“We also offer aqua fitness classes in Gardner Indoor Pool in the mornings,” Scales said. “This summer we’ll be offering more at Baldonado Pool.”

Boot Camp Extreme also will be offered for six to eight weeks in the spring and fall, but have not been scheduled yet.

“A couple of times a month we also offer mini-fitness challenges at all the (physical) fitness centers on post,” Scales said. “We typically have two a month, sometimes more, depending on their schedules and those are all free to attend as well.”

Sessions with personal trainers also are available to help individuals meet goals, she said.

Fit Families are ready Families

Helping keep Families fit is one way MWR helps support mission readiness.

“The stronger your support system is, the stronger you are going to be in whatever your goal or mission is,” Scales said. “If we have a Soldier who is having issues with his physical fitness, yet his spouse is working on her’s, maybe they can work on it together — whether it’s working out together, meal prepping together, just making sure the whole Family has time set apart to make that one of their priorities.”

There are “Kid Corners” at Shaw and Estep PFCs where children can play if someone is there to watch them and attend to them, if needed.

Classes are available to Army units who want to schedule a class for physical training. Cost is $40 for a group at a physical fitness center or $50 if the instructor travels off-site.

Trainers and staff always are looking for new classes to add with certified trainers.

“We just offer so much that there is something for everybody,” Scales said. “There is a place or an activity for everyone to feel comfortable with.”

For more information, call 270-798-7535.

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