FAQ: New Guest Tips

Welcome to Ellipse Fitness! First off, we are so excited to be a part of your fitness journey, and PLEASE always feel welcome to talk to our trainers and staff about anything! If we don’t know the answer, we are always happy to point you in the right direction!

Here are some common questions we see that may help you to get started…

1. What should I bring?

a. A good pair of clean tennis shoes
b. Sweat towel
c. Water (we sell bottles of water too, but go ahead and bring your favorite water bottle if you’d like!)
d. Appropriate fitness gear, like a t-shirt and fitness pants/shorts.
e. We have foam rollers and boxing gloves, but if you have a roller or gloves that you love, feel free to bring them.

2. Will I be the only one who…?

There is a 98% chance, someone your age, with your condition, and/or your concerns HAS done this before and was successful doing so! You are not alone! We have levels suitable for almost everyone. Fitness can be intimidating initially, but we will set you up for success, going over the basics, breaking down the movements and only adding things in once you are ready.

3. My [fill in the blank] hurts, had surgery, etc…

First, make sure you have filled out a medical history form so we know exactly how to work with you during your Ellipse training sessions. Our certified trainers are experienced to offer suitable adjustments or alternate exercises as needed.

4. My schedule is tough! How long are the workouts and what does the schedule look like?

At Ellipse we program our sessions assuming that everyone has a variable schedule and in some cases can never make it on a certain day. No worries, our behind the scenes programming has you covered! Get a complete workout attending as little as 2-3 days/week. Our sessions run 45-50 minutes and include foam rolling and a dynamic warm-up.

Group Personal Training (5am, 6am, 9am, 12pm, 4pm, 5pm*, 6pm*. Ask your local studio for the Saturday schedule.)
*Allouez – no 5 pm or 6pm on Fridays
*Oakville – no 5pm on Fridays

– Monday, Wednesday, Friday, and Saturday are strength based with Monday and Friday offering a little more heart-pounding metabolic component.

• Kickboxing/Team Training (5am, 6am, 9am, 12pm, 4pm, 5pm, 6pm. Ask your local studio for the Saturday schedule.)
– Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday have a kickboxing basis with a variety of twists to keep it fresh.

We respect your time and make a practice of starting and ending on time. Don’t forget, we have showers available as well if you need to make your getaway even quicker!

5. I’m nervous

That’s totally normal and you are not alone! Taking the first step into the studio is always the hardest. If you can make it into the front doors, we promise to take good care of you and help you feel as comfortable and welcomed as possible! If you have any injuries, bodily limitations, or just want to test the waters as opposed to jumping right in, our trainers will work with you. Not sure what a deadlift is? No problem, we’ll walk you through a hip lift and work to progress you toward the next step.

6. I won’t know anyone!

Most people don’t know anyone the first day, which is why we are here! Let us introduce you to some new fitness friends and trainers. We’re all here for the same positive results, accountability, and community.

7. In the past, I’ve gotten bored

For over a decade, Ellipse has been known for our variety and fitness expertise. Let us show you variety like never before!

8. How do I get started?

First, request a medical history form (or click the link above!) and login from your local studio. Call, email, or stop in to set up an initial “Get To Know You” session to help us guide you toward the program best suited to you. Short on time? Just fill out your medical history form and we can email or call you our recommendation and best way to get started.

Your first session we’ll have you come in about 15 minutes prior to get your orientated and ready for the session. After your first session, arriving 5-15 minutes prior will allow proper foam rolling and warm-up time.

9. How can I stay connected?

Make sure you are getting our emails! On Tuesday’s you’ll find our “Lunch N’ Learn” series to keep you informed and motivated. Keep up with your local studios with our Friday studio update and notes. If you haven’t received an email yet, be sure to reach out.
Follow the Ellipse Fitness corporate Facebook pageand your local studio Facebook/Instagram pages for another method of staying “in the know”.

Finally, when you join as a member, you will be invited to be a part of your local studios private Facebook group; a place to interact with other members and ask health and fitness related questions!

10. What else should I know?

Our training team and Ellipse community are here to ensure your success. Without you, your results, or your positive experience, Ellipse wouldn’t be here so we are grateful and VERY motivated to make sure you have the best fitness experience EVER!

Our members are encouraged to book their sessions at least 4 hours prior to help the trainers provide the best service possible. Your situation doesn’t allow for a 4-hour window? Just check with your local studio as we have processes in place for those situations!

Life is about balance, and so is Ellipse Fitness. As mentioned before, you’ll get a great workout in, but there will be no exercises that you “cannot do”. Our coaches will make sure you have options, just communicate with us and we will figure it all out!

What a Decade of Studies Tells Us About Men’s and Women’s Nutrition

Our friends at Precision Nutrition have worked with over 100,000 clients in the past decade. Over the past year, they created a report on the top health nutritional challenges and how to work with them. Here are some things they found…


Said their top challenge was emotional/stress eating

Eat 3 or more restaurant meals every week

Get less than the minimum 7 hours of sleep per night

The percentage INCREASE among women snacking when not hungry

Say daily life demands keep them from exercising consistently


Said their top challenge was eating too quickly

Eat 3 or more restaurant meals every week

Get less than the minimum 7 hours of sleep per night

The percentage INCREASE among women snacking when not hungry

Say daily life demands keep them from exercising consistently

While there are some slight differences between men and women, it is clear they struggle over many of the same issues. Most people want to not just lose weight, but also be consistent and have changes that last. Let’s look at our challenges and figure out how to work toward our GOALS and snowball good habits.

What is ONE thing you can focus on improving NOW, in January. On trouble with “New Year’s Resolutions” is that you have too long to put it off! Set a GOAL of January 31 st to form it into a regular habit.

Need Some Help?

Here are some easy-to-handle goals to start with.

1. Drink a full glass of water first thing in the morning before you even eat breakfast.

2. Go to bed 15 minutes earlier.

3. Get out of bed the FIRST time your alarm goes off.

4. Book your workouts at least 1 week prior and keep your appointment.

5. Eat an extra serving of vegetables every day.

6. Eat more whole foods (fresh fruits, vegetables, fiber, and protein) to prevent hunger and reduce over-consumption. If you catch yourself mindlessly eating/snacking, get a change of scenery. Go for a walk, go fill your water, make a phone call, get outside, etc.

7. Cook More! Cooking doesn’t have to be complicated or take forever. Learn to make 8-10 basic, yet tasty, healthy meals that you can rotate or rely on.

8. Focus on progress, not perfection. Coming late to a workout is better than not attending at all. Eating right 5 days a week is better than 3 days. We’re all human! If you fail, resolve yourself to try again!

9. Create a bedtime routine that will help you “zone out” and bring stress levels down before bedtime. Try to keep the same bedtime and wake times, even on the weekends, to help solidify your routine. This assists with the circadian rhythm and keep hormone levels balanced, which will ultimately assist with hunger and satiation cues.

The Story of A Goose

Who is a motivator?

Motivators are not just paid speakers, respected authors, or television personalities.  All people are motivators.  The question to ask is what message does each person convey. 

The following story, “The Story of a Goose,” is a well-known story by an unknown author.  I use it often in any team building situation.  I first heard the story working in an upscale preschool in St. Louis City.  The team there was falling apart.  This story brought us back together.

The Story of A Goose


Next fall when you see geese heading south for the winter flying along in a “V” formation, you might be interested in knowing what science has discovered about why they fly that way. It has been learned that as each bird flaps its wings, it creates an uplift for the bird immediately following. By flying in a “V” formation, the whole flock adds at least 71% greater flying range than if each bird flew on its own. People who share common direction and sense of community can get where they are going quicker and easier, because they are traveling on the thrust of one another.


When a goose falls out of formation, it suddenly feels the draft and resistance of trying to go it alone, and quickly gets into formation to take advantage of the lifting power of the bird immediately in front. If we have as much sense as a goose, we will stay in formation with those who are headed the same way we are going.


When the lead goose gets tired, he rotates back in the wing and another goose flies point. It pays to take turn doing hard jobs.


The geese honk from behind to encourage those up front to keep up their speed. An encouraging word goes a long way. What do YOU say when you honk from behind?  Is it encouraging? 


Finally, when a goose gets sick, or is wounded by a gun shot and falls out, two geese fall out of formation and follow him/her until he/she is either able to fly or until he/she is dead, then they launch out on their own or with another formation to catch up with the group. If we have the sense of a goose, we will stand by each other like that.


Do I have the sense of a goose?  In what ways?  How can I share one of those ways with someone who has not developed that sense yet?  How can I improve on my V-formation?


Share this story with someone special who doesn’t know they are one of your special geese.  Share it also with another who has fallen out of formation and needs a goose.



A Tale of One Half Marathon

Having previously participated in the “Go! St. Louis Marathon and Half,” a weekend featuring foot races of many distances, I found it difficult in 2009 to leave the event off of my calendar entirely. I recently purchased my own fitness business, sent my youngest of three children off to kindergarten, and increased my volunteer activities in the community. My schedule was brimming with activities that my calendar simply couldn’t handle. I would be unable to train for the event and resigned myself to the fact that I would not be participating in the 13.1 mile race for the first time in four years. However, I decided forty-eight hours prior to the event that this would be my greatest half-marathon to date, and, as any experienced distance runner knows, it is hardly about the race but the preparation.
It was while watching a prime time weather forecast late Friday evening that predicted rain for the event that I recall wondering if I would be able to complete the race without a typical fourteen week training program. “Expect cold, wet pavement for the ‘Go! St. Louis’ events this Sunday…” Running in the rain has been something I, gratefully, managed to avoid in all the previous foot races. Running in wet shoes, I imagine, is not a pleasant experience. Imagine cement blocks tied to your feet. I suppose running 13.1 miles didn’t seem like enough of a challenge for me anymore. Add a literal April shower with zero mileage on my feet, I’d consider it.
I went to bed early Friday under a full moon wondering. Could I? Would I? Should I? As my eyelids became heavier, I was still unsure. My rooster would crow at 3am the morning of the event. Crossing the finish line remained in my dreams and the thought consumed me.
As the sun sank low Saturday night, I recall gathering my thoughts which were racing in my head already. Where are my shoes? What should I wear? My thoughts were scattered like the spring storms approaching the area. I needed them to come together like a cold air mass meeting a warm air mass to create the perfect storm.
As if on the saddle of a winged horse, I flew through the house collecting necessary accessories. I put on everything I would wear less than 12 hours from that present time. I charged up my iPod and created a musical playlist to stay entertained on the course. I knew I could do it, but I also knew it would not be easy
I thought a warm bath would hopefully begin the process of relaxation. The steaming bathwater made me sweat more than the run would. I started to map out the course in my head. Anticipating water stops, hill climbs, and iconic scenery of St. Louis, relaxation began to slip away. Anxiety and excitement replaced it.
Finally, I tied up all the loose ends and headed off to bed. After 60 restless minutes, I decided it didn’t matter anymore. I had too many doubts, questions, and valid concerns about my ability to complete this endeavor safely. As the owner of an increasingly popular fitness facility, I wondered how my demise would read as a headline in the newspaper. After all I didn’t even train. I am certainly not coming in first place. No one expects me to run. Therefore if I overslept, I simply wouldn’t go. I could easily forget this childlike motivation I felt for the past twenty-four hours. Everyone knows that it is the training that matters. It is not the race.
At the start of the next morning, which was at three o’clock, I stretched from head to toe before getting out of bed. The excitement did not go away. I was more motivated than ever. Good thing the clothes were lined up and waiting for me. I was anxiously awaiting my coffee cup. It needed to be filled, caressed, and emptied at least twice. I was waiting for the nerves to kick in entirely, but it felt like I was headed out for a recreational run in downtown St. Louis.
“The Star Spangled Banner” began the festivities followed by a gunshot that droves about 40,000 feet over the starting line. Running through landmarks such as the brewery, alongside the Mississippi River, and in front of the Gateway Arch represented the charm of a great city camouflaged in rain, thunder, prodding feet, and athletes of all abilities. My feet began to feel very heavy as the steady rain soaked them to the sole. The rolling hills of St. Louis City didn’t help matters. My thighs felt heavy as buckets of rocks.
I was determined to find a cadence. The perfect song, “American Idiot,” played through my iPod. How appropriate was that? Gliding through the course with an ease I did not expect at mile 10, a confidence allowed my feet to travel effortlessly as the miles flowed under my feet like water under a bridge. As the rain grew in intensity, the wind began to whip through the tall city buildings adorning Market Street. The Old Courthouse was at the top of the hill right in front of the highly anticipated finish line. Sprinting to the end came naturally. I crossed the finish line in two hours and four minutes.
It was a personal record and a mental victory that I will never forget. As a volunteer placed a medal around my neck, I realized that I had indeed trained for this event. It seems hindsight showed me that my life is much more difficult that running 13.1 miles in one outing.
Life is good training. Just make sure you are in good physical condition to run with it.

Ellipse Fitness Franchisee Ann Morrow Establishes New Holiday: March Forth: New Beginnings Day

March 3, 2011

St Louis, MO. – Ann Morrow, Owner of Ellipse Fitness in Oakville, requested that St. Louis County officially recognize a new holiday to promote proper nutrition, physical activity, wellness, and the importance of goal setting to our community. Last week, St. Louis County Executive Charlie Dooley proclaimed March 4th to be March Forth: New Beginnings Day. Ann has celebrated this event with her family for the past seven years after reading an article in Family Fun Magazine.

The holiday was created by Deborah Shouse, a prominent writer, speaker and creativity coach. Ann has used this date as a starting point for various accomplishments including the completion of two marathons, six half marathons, multiple 5k charity events, and to start her own fitness and weight loss business, Ellipse Fitness, located on 6047 Telegraph Road, St. Louis, MO.

Ann, along with Ellipse Fitness, hopes to create more visibility for the holiday and sees it as an opportunity for individuals, families, teams, and corporations to enhance their knowledge of fitness and nutrition and commit to a healthier lifestyle. According to Morrow:

“March FORTH is the only day of the year that is a command. It is a day that invites us to move forward in life. Set a new goal, revisit a New Year’s resolution, spend more time with family and friends, and celebrate your progress. It can also be a day of reflection. Some people chose to set this day aside to examine past endeavors, successes or failures, and search for a lesson behind it.”

About Ellipse Fitness
Founded in 2002, Ellipse Fitness is a classes-only fitness and nutrition franchise specializing in providing regularly scheduled exercise classes and nutrition programs for our members. Our proprietary workout programs are set in a group exercise format and emphasize functional movement, cardiovascular training, building core strength and adding lean muscle mass. For information on programs and locations please visit For information about owning an Ellipse Fitness franchise please visit

For More Information, Contact:
Ann Morrow
Ellipse Fitness
Phone: 314 846 0003

Holiday Hold ‘Em

It has been a very challenging week of “Holiday Hold ‘Em” this week.  I waited to send this until Friday of this week.  As the weekend approaches, are you prepared for what lies ahead.  No, not the crowded parking lots, credit card limits, or weather.   I am talking about the 15 meals you need to eat Friday to Sunday.

Ellipse Fitness Neenah has challenged their members to a game of Holiday Hold Em.  The focus is on body fat percentage and how to maintain it over the next few challenging weeks.  You better believe they know what the next 15 meals over the weekend will be.  They KNOW because they have a plan.  Do you have your plan set? Are you planning on planning?  Are you hoping for the best this weekend? this month?

Ask yourself: What do (did) I hope to accomplish this week or this month? Why is it that we “hope” to do something we are in complete control over? You hope that you avoid the cold and flu bugs for the holiday. You hope that snow holds off this weekend. You hope loved ones suffering from cancer can find a cure or peace. You don’t hope for proper nutrition or weight loss. You don’t hope to eat well. You do it or you don’t.

What are you going to do this weekend? What do you hope to do next week? Do that. I know you can. You know you can.

Thanks Becky!

What Every Freshman Should Know

We all have that pile of papers in the corner of the kitchen or near the computer of “I’ll do it later” tasks. Don’t we? Well, I do. Correction: I did. I found this list my son’s high school gave out to him before the school year began. I’m so glad I found it.  Perhaps the title should read, “What EVERYONE should know”

Read each of the following tips.  How can you apply this to your life?  How can you share this information with others in your life?  What can you do to influence the world one small deed at a time?

  1. Remember that you have a clean slate and that whatever you did before, good or bad, does not matter anymore.
  2. Create a good relationship with your parents, they are the reason you are here.  They will be a great source of help throughout your high school career and life!
  3. Vianney, my son’s high school, is sacred ground.  So cherish it because it is made sacred by the people who walk it.
  4. The family you are joining has been years in the making, but we are still under construction.  We need your help with some positive fresh ideas.
  5. Value your time here.  It goes by fast.
  6. Do you work every night and start every day strong so you don’t fall behind early.
  7. Make the most out of everyday.  You don’t want to look back on your years with regrets.  The more you put in, the more you get out.
  8. The people you interact with will be your brothers and sisters for life and friends forever.  Treat each other as a brother or sister and don’t exclude anyone because they are different.  Your enemy from your first year might be your best friend your last year.
  9. Just be yourself.  don’t put on a false front so you can make more friends.
  10. Be proud to be a Griffin.  Represent Vianney well.
  11. Support your home teams.  All of them.
  12. Don’t blow off your faith because you might be embarrassed or think it is not a cool thing to do.  Pray every day.
  13. If you don’t make a sports team, try something else.  There are other things to do besides sports.
  14. Prioritize your time.  You might feel overwhelmed.  Make sure you focus on the important things in life.
  15. If you give respect, you will be respected in return.
  16. Do not get too focused on any one thing.  Balance your time and get the things done that you need to do.
  17. Use your free period.  You can get help with your work and talk with teachers.
  18. For any bad experience, there will be many good ones.  No need to focus on shortcomings or mistakes.
  19. Don’t overdose on the cookies.


Go back and read them again.  You may not be a Griffin, but represent whatever it is you are well.  Remind yourself the ground YOU walk is sacred because of whomever walked it before you AND because YOU are walking it right now.  Someone will follow your footsteps.  Who can you inspire on your path?

I love how it ends with “Don’t overdose on the cookies.”  I can certainly apply that one to my life!  Comment on your favorite.  How will you apply it?  Remember well done is better than well said.

Are you scared? Me too.

Fear: noun, a feeling of anxiety about a probable situation.

Part of me really wants to say, “Have no fear. Don’t be scared or nervous. It’s not as scary as you think.” I’m afraid if I said those things that it may diminish the fire burning inside that says, “I’m doing this.” On the flip side, I am afraid of saying, “It is scary. Be afraid. It’s worse than you think.” That sounds very encouraging and motivating…NOT!

So, here is the bottom line. Most goals, dreams, accomplishments, successes, and failures come with pitfalls. Confidence will not stop you from failing. It will certainly aid in your success, but fear is the powerful tool that will power you more than your confidence.

I would be willing to argue that fear creates courage and that is what it takes. Here’s my advice:

It’s okay to scared. As a matter of fact, it is fantastic. Be afraid.

Know your consequences, but trust your instincts.

Finally and most important, never stop trying no matter the adversity you face.

I applaud the brave who put their stories out there for the world to learn from, the weak who constantly get on their feet after a devastating fall, and the fearless who throw caution to the wind.

Be brave and think big!

This is dedicated to the ones I love…

Today, my 6 and 7 year old headed off to 1st and 2nd grade.  I was ready for it.  They were ready too.  I gave them a kiss, and my husband drove them to school.  I’m not worried a bit.  I LOVE you Ethan and Cecelia.  You are so very fun!  I’m glad to share you with the world.

I, also, dropped my 9th grader off for his 2nd day of high school.  If you live in and around St. Louis, you know high school is a really big deal.  Bigger than perhaps any other city.  He was tired from the homework, football practice, and waking up early each day.  I was ready for this too!  I was surprised by how ready I was.  I LOVE you Jacob.  What a fine young man you are growing up to be.

My husband is taking his Lieutenant’s test as well.  Good luck baby!

As if that wasn’t enough, today is the last day of AMP’D in St. Louis!  I LOVE my AMP’D cadets.  I LOVE you guys.  You are amazing.  You really are.  It is my pleasure to work with you, know you, and watch you achieve your goals.  I thank you from the bottom of my heart.  TRUELY!

As school begins and Cadets graduate, I find myself uncharacteristically numb to the emotional opportunities all around me.  So, I decided it was the perfect day to watch “The Boys of Fall” video by Kenny Chesney.  Football moms have been telling me for weeks to watch it.  My son kept telling me to watch it.  His friends kept telling me to watch it.   Every conversation has gone like this, “You have got to watch it. You’ll cry.”

My response has been “why would I want to watch it then?”  I don’t like romantic movies.  I don’t like to cry. I don’t like to appear weak.  (Don’t even say it.  I know!)

Anyway feeling numb today, I thought I would watch this so-called tear jerk-er.  WOW!  You can better believe I will be giving a speech inspired by this one when AMP’D begins again on September 13!

When it comes to love….what’s enough?

Thanks everyone!  It has been a great summer and the future is so bright.

Watch the video yourself!

Only One Pound

Hello, do you know me?
If you don’t, you should. I’m a pound of fat,
And I’m the HAPPIEST pound of fat that you would ever want to meet.
Want to know why?
It’s because no one ever wants to lose me;
I’m ONLY ONE POUND, just a pound!
Everyone wants to lose three pounds, five pounds, or fifteen pounds, but
never only one.
So I just stick around and happily keep you fat.
Then I add to myself, ever so slyly, so that you never seem to notice it.
That is, until I’ve grown to ten, twenty, thirty or even more pounds in weight.
Yes, it’s fun being ONLY ONE POUND OF FAT, left to do as I please.
So, when you weigh in, keep right on saying, “Oh, I only lost one pound.”
(As if that were such a terrible thing.)
For you see, if you do this, you’ll encourage others to keep me around
because they’ll think I’m not worth losing.
And, I love being around you – your arms, your legs, your chin, your hips
and every part of you.
Happy Days!!!
After all, I’m ONLY ONE POUND OF FAT!!!
– Author Unknown