More than 20 years ago, Lea Goring was diagnosed with osteopenia – bones that are weaker than normal – and after doing some research, she found out that lifting weights was one way to treat the condition. But the former dental hygienist, now 80, had never been athletic and had no idea what to do.
“I didn’t know how to lift weights, so I got a personal trainer,” says Lea, “and one thing led to another.”
Nowadays, Lea and her husband of 60 years, Dick, 81, epitomize healthy aging. They appear as fit as adults half their age, thanks in great part to their twice-a-week workouts at BeFIT Health Studio in Lake Mary.
Lea, who also was diagnosed with type 2 diabetes at age 12, says the benefits of working with her personal trainer, BeFIT co-founder Justin Bedor, are priceless. By exercising and eating a healthy diet, Lea has remarkably been able to manage her conditions with no medication.
“And I get the ability, at 80 years old, to travel the world,” says Lea, who along with Dick was also an avid scuba diver until age 75. “At BeFIT, they make working out fun; they make it interesting. Our doctor tells us, ‘You’re doing grand!’”
For Justin and co-founder Jeremy Cook, who opened BeFIT in 2012, helping people do what they love to do is their mission.
“Many of our clients are retirees who want to enjoy the lives they’ve worked so hard to get,” Justin says. “They want to travel; they want to play with their grandkids.”
Justin and Jeremy specialize in modifying workouts for their clients as they age. For example, the Gorings recently incorporated Pilates and yoga into their weight-training routines.
“We’re not a bodybuilding gym,” Jeremy says. “We’re about functional training and movement. Quality of life is something we talk about to all of our clients. We want to make sure that their workouts and diets are sustainable. It has to be something you enjoy, so you will stick with it.”
That certainly has been the case for Lea and Dick. In addition to their training sessions, they also take walks together twice a day. That routine has allowed them to “completely circumnavigate the globe by air and sea,” Dick says of their travels, and they have four more trips scheduled in the coming months.
“We just keep on going,” Lea grins. “We’re old, but we’re not dead!”