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THE TEAM

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ALLIE GRANTZ

My journey into health and fitness began more than 20 years ago when I took on my very first training client, ME!  At the time, I was overweight and very unhappy. The more unhappy I became the more the scale went up. To say the least, it was a vicious cycle. To end the cycle I decided to join a gym  (which was probably the scariest thing I had ever done). I took residence on an exercise bike where I observed everything in my line of vision for the next few weeks. The one thing that really stood out to me is that none of the trainers really paid much attention to their clients. A switch flipped and I decided I was going to start studying to become a trainer.  I wanted to become the trainer that I never saw at that gym - attentive, caring, and informed.  During this time I also found a love for indoor cycling and taught for over 10 years in the Lehigh Valley. Life has a way of coming full circle and I’m so happy to be back in the saddle!!

MERCEDES PEIL

I have always been active. I played travel soccer growing up and into high school. I also loved to swim; I competed on my high school swim team and was a certified lifeguard for five summers until college.

While I gave up sports to juggle full-time work and full-time education, I remained active in my “spare” time. In my 20s, I went through phases as a dedicated gym goer, runner, and yogi but nothing really stuck with me until I committed to a gym in Easton a few years ago. Since then, I transitioned from mostly cardio and HIIT workouts to weightlifting and strength training. I am now in my (early) 30s and can honestly say I have never felt stronger and healthier, both physically and mentally.

As I continue my own fitness journey and begin instructing indoor cycling classes, I hope to help encourage and motivate others and incorporate fun into my routines and classes.

 

On the bike: I love a good hill climb and really anything else that gets my heart rate up and works up a solid sweat.

 

Off the bike: I am the person who sweats profusely and takes an awkward lap around the gym between sets.

 

What are we listening to:  I like high-energy pop or EDM but I may dabble in 90s throwbacks and alternative. Come to one of my classes to find out!

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CRISTIE DEREA

My fitness journey began many years ago. I started out taking group classes and running and eventually began teaching myself. In 2016 I decided to "retire" from teaching and focus a little more on myself. In 2019, I competed in my first body building competition. Along the way I have also ran many 5ks, 10ks and half marathons. I currently and working toward becoming an ultra runner. The best part of sharing my love for fitness is watching others "catch the bug" and change their lives for the better!

 

On the bike: I will push you, but we will have a blast doing it! When you come into my class, you never know what I might throw at you but I can assure you, you'll leave feeling great!

 

Off the bike: I can usually be found in the woods! I love trail running and finding new places to go. When I'm not running, I'm on my ATV or snowmobile in Tug Hill NY.

 

What are we listening to:  I love all kinds of music and finding fun ways to set my class to it. We'll be riding to anything from rock, 90s hip hop, today's hits and country. I love a good theme as well! 

KARA KOLTON

My fitness journey began about 3 1/2 years ago. I struggled with my weight for most of my life. I dieted and exercised on and off, running 2 half marathons, and 1 duathlon, but never really committed to a healthy lifestyle.

 

In 2019, I was told by my physician that I needed to lose weight.  I was considered morbidly obese and it was suggested I begin a regime of medication to control my dangerously high cholesterol. That was my wake-up call.  It was time to get fit and healthy for life, not just for an upcoming event. 

 

I had lost 60lbs when I went to my first indoor cycling class.   I loved it!  It was much different than going to a gym and working out alone.   I was working out with people who are all there doing what you’re doing, cheering each other on while listening to great music and burning calories.  I was taking 2-3 classes per week and was able to maintain the weight loss.

 

Not long after, we were in a pandemic, and gyms closed.  I downloaded an app  and began indoor cycling classes at home, along with strength training and barre.  While it seemed everyone was baking and eating, I increased my strength and endurance and became a Level I Certified SpinningⓇ Instructor.  

I was never athletic.  I was never great at sports.  I couldn’t do one push-up or sit-up.   I couldn’t walk up the stairs without being out of breath.  I want to inspire those who think they can’t change their lives through fitness.  Anyone can with consistency and determination.  There’s no greater feeling than feeling great.  Movement is medicine.  Music is medicine.  Combined, they can change your life.  One indoor cycling class changed mine.

 

On the Bike: Although I’m new as an instructor, I’m not new to indoor cycling.  There’s ALWAYS a pool of sweat around me.   Especially after a HIIT and Hills ride.

 

Off the bike: I’m a fur mom of 3 dogs, 1 cat and 1 retired horse.  So, you could say I swapped one saddle for another.  And I will tell you, indoor cycling is much safer.

 

What are we listening to:  I love any music that will make you want to get up on the dance floor:  EDM, 80’s, 90’s, hip-hop and pop.

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ALYSSA KRESGE

My passion for fitness and becoming a fitness instructor was inspired by my Mom. She has been a fitness instructor for my whole life, and it’s always been something I have enjoyed being around. I became a cycling instructor in May 2021 while living in Philadelphia during my doctoral studies at Temple University. As a physical therapist, I additionally have a passion for overall health and exercise. I am a very physically active person via strength training, HIIT training, running, walking, biking, hiking, and whatever gets me outside! Using my knowledge from my education and career, I look to create a welcoming and safe environment for all riders. I have had the opportunity to teach at a variety of studios since receiving my certification, both in Philadelphia and the Lehigh Valley.

I believe that, growing up as an avid dancer and runner, I have the perfect background for being a fitness instructor. I thrive on the adrenaline rush of the cardio workout and love creating playlists to jam out to during my class. You can expect high energy music and a dynamic cycling working with rhythm moves, hills, sprints, and power intervals. I like to ride to the beat of the music, while also emphasizing power and strength!  I am really excited to be joining the CycleFit team and I look forward to meeting all of you on the bike!

COURTNEY HAMMERSTONE

I've always been an active person. My passion for fitness developed at a young age through participation in youth sports. I continued to play basketball and field hockey, ultimately finishing my field hockey career at the collegiate level. When no longer a competitive athlete, I struggled to find purpose in training. I soon realized, however, that exercise is not a tool for us to reach our goals, but instead a pivotal part of maintaining a healthy lifestyle. I believe that fitness is not just about physical health, but also about mental health and well-being. It's important to take time to prioritize our health, and I hope that my class can act as an escape from the stressors of daily life and allow you to focus on yourself for a while. 

 

Over the years, I have still found ways to feed my competitive spirit - most notably participating in a few half marathons. However, my decision to join the CycleFit team was not driven by competition, but rather community. I attended a few classes and felt an overwhelming sense of motivation from those around me. It allowed me to feel the sense of comradery and fulfillment that I had been lacking. One of my favorites parts of exercising in a group setting is seeing people accomplish things they never thought possible. Whether it's pushing through a tough climb or setting a new personal record, I love seeing people surprise themselves and feel pride in their accomplishments. Together, we can push through the tough moments and celebrate the small victories. My goal is to create a positive, energizing and supportive environment where everyone feels welcomed and valued, regardless of fitness level or experience. Let's work hard, laugh, and sweat together! 

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SARAH PEZZINO

Introduced to fitness at a young age, I have always thrived in the fitness community. From spartan races, triathlons, MMA, soccer, basketball, CrossFit, running, cycling, I feel like I have done it all. Now a full time student at Lafayette College majoring in Biology with a concentration in Nutrition & Fitness to turn my love of health and fitness into a career. Fitness is more than a passion for me, it is where I am expressing the very best version of myself while motivating people to achieve their goals! There is no greater opportunity then coaching and cheering on individuals though their journey.

No matter the skill level endorphins welcome everyone and so do I. I am so excited to be joining the CycleFit coaching family! When I see you on the bikes/benches get ready for a fun  playlist, sprints, and a sweet sweat (especially if it's upper body day-my favorite)!

 

And don’t forgot to bring your smiles, sweat towels, high fives, and good vibes cause we are clipped in for a good ride. Can’t wait to see you on the bikes :)

BRANDI VAN PATTEN

Starting with tumble tots and dance at the age of three, soccer at the age of five, and basketball at the age of nine, I learned very early that there is great strength and power in being part of a team. In fact, after a few years away from sports, I decided it was time to return to the soccer field, this time as coach of a middle school girls’ team. This leadership role quickly humbled me and taught me the importance of respect and accountability. To this day, I still believe my decision to coach is one of the best I’ve ever made—it’s been such a privilege to watch my players from my teams grow up and reach countless milestones.

 

Coaching soccer sparked my desire to earn my first personal training certification, which eventually landed me at a gym working as a trainer and marketing director. Before long, I completed another personal training certification as well as a Level 2 yoga instructor certification. I eventually left the gym to pursue a career in marketing for a global magazine publisher (to actually put my Broadcasting & Media Studies degree to good use) and in the four years since, I’ve felt the void left by no longer coaching, training, and missing out on teammates and clients achieving what they never believed was possible. When I saw CycleFit open so close to home, I knew it would be the perfect opportunity to jump back onto a team built with the intention to help others!

In my free time I’m typically watering my plants, buying new plants, or at Wegmans with my husband for the 15th time in a week because we always forget something on our list.

Clip in, buckle up, and be ready to party in class with me—your girl can’t resist a ride to the beat, a good dance routine, and a solid sweat!!

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JESS ZEINER

Growing up, I always gravitated towards the fitness community. I used movement as my outlet through several sports all the way through high school: cheer, dance, track, etc. Being an athlete was a huge part of my identity so after graduating high school it was a struggle to leave that piece of me behind. It took a while and trying out a lot of different things before finding my new passion. When I discovered cycling, my excitement for fitness was reignited.

I am currently a full time student at Penn State, University Park majoring in Elementary Education and minoring in Special Education, Child Development, and Deafness and Hearing Studies. Last Spring I decided to combine my passion for fitness with my love for teaching by getting my ACE group fitness instructor certification and Schwinn Cycling Certification. I have been teaching cycling and muscle conditioning classes at Penn State for over a year and it is the best thing I have ever done! I am beyond excited to join the CycleFit community. I design my classes using high energy music that makes you feel like you are having a dance party. I strive to create a well rounded ride that focuses on both strength and endurance that leaves you feeling accomplished and stronger! Join me for a ride that will invigorate your body and spirit!

MEGAN GUTHRIE

Growing up, I was always a very active kid involved in multiple sports year round. This continued all throughout high school, and then COVID hit my senior year. Transitioning into college, I knew I needed an outlet to relieve the stress of my busy schedule, so I gravitated towards the gym and group fitness! Having a place to get rid of stress and build a community was so special to me, and something I have really valued over the last few years. After realizing how much fitness meant to me in my life and seeing all the positives it has brought me, I knew I wanted to share this joy and have an impact on others lives. My sophomore year of college, I studied long and and hard and obtained my CPT! Since then I have been teaching all kinds of group fitness classes, my favorites being strength classes and cycling. 

As I have just graduated from Penn State University with my bachelors degree in marketing, I am excited to continue my love of teaching at CycleFit! I love to make my classes high energy and well rounded, incorporating a variety of music and elements that are sure to make you feel like you are working hard and accomplished after your ride. Like I always say before every class I teach: it should feel like a party on the bike! I love to bring high energy, motivation, the occasional bad sing along to some of my favorite songs, but most importantly I strive to create an encouraging environment within each class. Can’t wait to see everyone for a fun filled sweat! 

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