Why Do You Work Out?

We scoured East Bay gyms to see what inspires people to work that body.

What motivates us to exercise? Is it to maintain health, improve looks, or just have fun? To investigate the question, we caught ten East Bay residents in the act. They say a good workout achieves many ends, and the means to get there can vary widely. Most important is to personalize a routine, and then make it a priority. Thanks, guys, that sounds easy.

Zenohe Mora, 18

Touchstone Climbing and Fitness, Concord

Q: What’s your motivation in rock climbing?

A: Trying your best, to see how far you can push your body. To see how far you can get, like on a certain grade on a climb.

Q: What do you like about this activity over other sports?

A: I’ve tried skateboarding, but I’m not very good at that. I did T-ball and soccer, but that was mostly for my parents. This is more for me.

Q: What’s the hardest thing about rock climbing?

A: The hardest thing about it is committing, and just pushing yourself a little further. When you feel like giving up, you just push yourself a little more.

Jocelyn Santora, 23

Fitness 19, San Ramon

Q: What are your fitness goals?

A: Well, I lost about ten pounds last year, and right now I’m trying to lose some weight and also maintain the weight that I’ve lost.

Q: What’s the most difficult aspect of your routine?

A: Keeping it exciting and interesting. You’re doing the same thing every day. Every time you go, you’re in the same place.

Q: Do you have any fitness advice to offer?

A: I would always be on the lookout for new things. Always ask fitness instructors for tips, because they’re usually more than happy to give them to you.

Rachelle Cruz, 29

Curves, Fremont

Q: What motivates you to work out?

A: Losing weight, and music. Mostly, the music keeps me motivated.

Q: Is your mom usually your workout partner?

A: My mom always wants me to get moving. She gets me to come in here. We’re a mom and daughter team. But I come in here by myself if she doesn’t have enough time.

Gary Martin, 30

24 Hour Fitness, Richmond

Q: What’s your motivation to work out?

A: To get big; to build my muscles.

Q: What would you say to someone thinking about starting a weightlifting routine?

A: If you’re not going to do it, somebody else is going to do it. Nobody’s going to do it for you, so you might as well get up and do it.

Alyssa Cummings, 34

Funky Door Yoga, Berkeley

Q: What’s your motivation to work out?

A: Just to be healthier. That’s it. I feel much healthier, both mentally and physically, after I come here.

Q: How long have you been attending classes here?

A: On and off (I stopped for a little while), for about a year. After I quit smoking — that was my other motivation.

P.J. MacAlpine, 39

YMCA, Berkeley

Q: What workout will you be doing today?

A: I’m doing Advanced Cardio Hip-Hop. I like to try out different things. I was passing through the area, so I’m just coming to try out the class.

Q: What motivates you to exercise?

A: I like to stay healthy. It gives me good well-being, physical and mental health.

Q: What’s your advice for someone looking to start a new exercise routine?

A: It’s important to find a program that works for you. It’s about finding what you like, and being patient with yourself, and taking the time to find out where you’re at.

Michelle Puccini, 45

Iron Horse Trail, Danville

Q: What motivated you to get out and ride today?

A: You can’t beat this beautiful weather. I needed some fresh air, and here I am on my bike.

Q: What’s new and exciting in your fitness routine?

A: There’s a class that has just opened up in Walnut Creek called Bar Method. It’s one hour of very effective work for the abs, and all the trouble spots that women try and work on.

Q: What do you like most about exercising?

A: I like to maintain my weight and I think it’s also a stress reliever. It keeps you healthy.

Maceo Bell, 46

24 Hour Fitness, Richmond

Q: What’s the hardest part about maintaining an exercise routine?

A: Working. You just have to work, and then try to work out. Lately I’ve been doing it before work.

Q: Do you have any advice for someone trying to work out regularly?

A: Stay focused on what you got to do, and what your aim is. Whatever you’re trying to build or work out, stay focused, and don’t let nobody or nothing deter from what you’re going to do.

Teresita Cruz, 55

Curves, Fremont

Q: What do you like about working out at Curves?

A: I love Curves because of the music, the beat of the music. The benefits that I get from it are energy, and I fit my clothes better.

Q: How long have you been a member here?

A: I’ve been with Curves for about a year and a half now. Before Curves, I walked about twice a week with my husband. Now, if I don’t get my exercise at Curves, then we will walk.

Michael Stearns, 67

Gold’s Gym, Oakland

Q: What is your motivation to work out?

A: My initial motivation was a minor heart attack, and now my goal is to actually get stronger.

Q: What have you achieved since you joined Gold’s?

A: I’ve lost a little weight, and I’ve moved some of the weight around, and I’m stronger now than I was when I started.

Q: How frequently do you come to the gym?

A: Coming in every day is difficult; coming in every other day is pretty easy. The benefit is I always walk out feeling better than when I walked in.

Why Do You Work Out?

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