Meet Jessica – our February Member of the Month!


Hello everyone!

Welcome to another edition of our Member of the Month series, where we feature some of the amazing people who are part of our Loyobo FIT family. We think it is important to share their stories to help inspire others and to celebrate their amazing accomplishments!

This month that member is Jessica Wood, who is one of our VIP members. Throughout 2019 and the beginning of 2020, we’ve seen Jessica grow and push herself outside of her comfort zone, really trying to redefine what health, fitness and body love means for her. Our entire team has been so inspired by Jessica’s strong spirit, her determination to NOT let chronic pain hold her back and the positive energy she brings to our classes. We love seeing her interact with members of the Loyobo FIT community, her encouraging attitude and her ability to make everyone around her feel special 🙂

She is a joy to teach and we could not be more proud of her journey.

This month, JESSICA, we celebrate YOU! We are so grateful to know you. Thank you for being a part of our family and for sharing your story with us!

How long have you been coming to Loyobo FIT and what initially inspired you to try a class?

I’ve been coming to Loyobo FIT for about a year now. I first heard about it through a friend and he had great things to say about Courtney so I thought I would try it out. I was looking for something fun and engaging- I had recently had my second child and was getting incredibly bored of going to the gym by myself. I find that I need great people around me to help me continue working out and to feel good about it.

What are your top 3 health and fitness goals?


  • My number one goal is to reconnect with my body and have moments of feeling good in it again. After years of chronic pain this can be challenging at times, but my goal when I come into a class is to focus and try to leave feeling better than I did when I came in.

  • I’m often completely on and going at full speed, or off and crashing/sleeping so my second goal is to be centered at times and enjoy the middle ground. I’ve found the Pilates and Yoga classes are helpful for me in achieving these feelings.

  • Eventually I would like to work on building up my muscle again.

What is one of the challenges that you have faced in your health/fitness journey? What have you found most helpful in working to overcome it?

One of the challenges I’ve faced is trying to balance my desire for energy and fitness and wellness with a body that isn’t always well and navigating invisible physical disabilities. Two things I’ve found that have helped me tremendously are 1) changing my mindset and 2) having great support and community.

Changing my mindset from “I have to do it all” to “I can do this part and see how I feel” has been helpful. Giving myself space to recover when needed instead of pushing through is also another mind set change that was beneficial. Having supportive people in my life who encourage me to take care of myself and who help me carve out time to care for myself through exercise has also been key. 

How has your life changed since becoming a member of Loyobo FIT?

I used to love fitness activities and they were a really important part of my life. However, I went through a period where it was much more difficult to do them physically and to enjoy them when I was doing them. Now, I feel as if I am finally enjoying fitness again and that I have found a wonderful community. Community is huge for me when it comes to fitness and it’s been a long time since I felt that lovely comfortable feeling of being “at home” in a fitness environment. The focus on inclusivity and community building at Loyobo FIT is so impressive and I really appreciate all of the hard work that goes into it- it makes a big difference knowing that you’re not only going there to exercise but to see and engage with great people and feel welcome.

What is your favourite memory or achievement of your time at Loyobo FIT?

When I think of how much I love Loyobo FIT, my mind instantly goes to the Zumba classes where we are doing Broadway numbers, like Hairspray and it’s fun and silly and delightful and I can’t help but laugh and giggle. I love being around all of these awesome people and dancing beside Katrina! It fills my heart every time!

What advice would you give to someone just starting their health and fitness journey?

Be kind to yourself. That doesn’t mean that you have to love every minute of the process or that everything is going to be perfect, but rather that it’s ok to embrace the messiness of our feelings. There are times that I love my body yes, but I also grew up in a culture that gave me some messed up messages about it and I’ve also struggled with loving my body for “what it can do” because there are times when it couldn’t do the things I wanted it to do and there will be times in the future when it can’t as well. It’s ok to have all the feelings as you continue on your ever changing fitness journey. Also, reaching out to others in your community and your trusted circle to have honest, messy conversations about our relationships with our bodies, with fitness, and how that changes over time can be really helpful. 

What is your favourite class and why?


That’s not a fair question! 🙂  I love all the classes I’ve tried for different reasons. I love Tone and Flex because I get to lift weights and put them down (something I always enjoy). I love Pilates because I can access a calming state while still being physically challenged, and I love Zumba because dancing with great people is one of my favourite activities in the world and I always laugh in that class out of sheer joy. I love the different perspectives, knowledge bases, and types of energy that all the instructors bring to their classes. Everyone is unique and delightful. 

What is your favourite healthy snack?

I eat a high fat, low carb diet to help manage chronic migraines so most of my snacks are filled with healthy fats and are really satiating. 90% of the time if you opened up my bag there would be macadamia nuts and Lily’s chocolate inside of it. 

Anything else you would like to share?

Thank you for creating a wonderful environment and community at Loyobo FIT. It really is unique in the city of Guelph and I am so happy to have found it:)

Congratulations Jessica! You deserve this moment in the spotlight as we celebrate the awesomeness that is YOU.  THANK YOU for including us as part of your journey and for sharing your story.  Your resilience, lovely smile and incredibly positive presence inspires us all and we are so grateful to have you as part of our Loyobo Family!

Feeling inspired? You could be our next Member of the Month! Try a class today with our 30 day trial for first time participants or contact us to book a free Love Your Body Orientation Session to find out what we are all about. And make sure to say hi if you see Dana around the studio!

See you all again soon!
– Sobia