Date By Gabrielle Martin
Erin Waldner, originally from Indiana, moved to Boston 15 years ago with her husband Matt. “While I still very much consider myself a Midwestern girl,” she shares, “but now Boston is my home. It’s where we’re raising our two children!”
It's also where she's opened her very own fitness studio, Proving Ground. Located on the Hull Peninsula, Waldner says her studio “attracts a community of amazing people all over the South Shore! We have clients from Hingham, Cohasset, Hull, Norwell, Scituate, Weymouth, and other surrounding towns. I think our unique approach to fitness attracts people who are looking for something different, something unique and special: we believe functional fitness is key.”
It all began twelve years ago: in 2008, a few years after she relocated to Massachusetts, Waldner began her professional fitness journey. She says she hasn’t looked back since!
“I was always very active growing up,” Waldner describes. “I loved cheerleading, dance, gymnastics, and tennis as a child. After graduating from college, I took my love of movement to the gym. Exercising and treating my body well was always a part of my life; it wasn’t until after having kids that I realized I wanted to do more of what I loved, and share that passion for health and fitness with more people!”
In addition to being certified in spinning and yoga, Waldner has a background in group fitness. Just last year, Waldner obtained her Nutrition Coaching certification; she is currently studying for her Certified Functional Strength Coach certification.
PROVING GROUND IN A PANDEMIC: TAKING ON COVID AND THE NEW NORMAL
“This is a time in our lives that is strange, scary and can be very unsettling for so many,” Waldner acknowledges sympathetically. So how did she, and Proving Ground, adjust to work within the perimeters of a pandemic? “We opened with our first virtual (Zoom) class on May 11. One of our trainers, Kelly Reardon, kicked-off our COVID start with an amazing at-home virtual class.”
“Since those first weeks, and first few months, of teaching online classes to our community, we’ve been able to open up our doors again to offer personal training, small group training, and outdoor park classes as well as in-studio group classes.” Waldner says, “I’m blessed to be surrounded by the most incredible team of trainers who all bring something different and amazing to our Proving Ground community.”
“Exercise benefits both the mind and the body! Listen to your body. Push when you can, pull back when your body tells you to.”
What are some fitness do’s and don'ts that most people don’t know? “I’m not sure whether this is a ‘do’ or a ‘don’t,’ but my biggest advice is to find something you love doing. Not a fan of group classes? Don’t do them! If you prefer to be outdoors, try new hiking trails that provide a challenge.”
RECOMMENDED LOCAL HIKING HOTSPOT: Blue Hills Reservation.
What’s your favorite way to be fit in the fall? “Fall is a great time to recharge your fitness routine. If you’ve taken a “break” during the summer, it’s a time to get back into your weekly schedule. If you’ve lost your spark with the same boring workouts, it's time to light it up in a different way. Sick of running? Look for another way!”
What’s something everyone should be incorporating into their weekly workout routine? “I think it’s important to add mobility into your week. Are you stretching? Are you foam rolling? Are you able to fit in yoga into your schedule each week? Mobility is key in preparing our body for the strain of strength training; it reduces the risk of injury as well as improving flexibility.”
AT-HOME WORKOUT, PROVING GROUND-STYLE:
40 seconds of movement, 20 seconds of rest. Repeat each exercise 2-3x.
- Pulsing jump squats.
- Bear crawl sit-throughs.
- Touchdown squat jumps.
- Reverse table-top tricep dips with a reverse plank alternating knee tuck.
- Squat to lunge.
- Push-up with a walk-out.
- High knee run to lunge, tap back.
Each exercise in this workout can be modified.