Pryme Tyme, I discovered is no longer (if it ever was) for granny’s getting in shape for knitting socks. No doubt some of the participants are indeed grandmothers but they are of the hard body variety. Six pack grandmas – let’s call them.
As we walk into class, one of the women who is no doubt a regular whispers that Lisa is gonna kick my you-know-what in this class. So Pryme Tyme class these days is apparently a cross between fitness training for “seniors” and Navy Seals.
I should point out before I get in trouble with someone – that not everyone in class is a bona-fide senior. We don’t “card” anyone before they come in and truthfully everyone is welcome – it’s just that Pryme Tyme was originally designed for seniors and that’s still the principal crowd.
When Lisa took over this class, she tells me, the feedback from participants was “don’t coddle us – make it tough”. Lisa, of course, is only too happy to accommodate such requests cause that’s music to her ears.
Lisa’s version of Sculpt involves lots of squats, pliés, lunges, leg curls, calf raises, etc. She combines the leg work with arm exercises using hand weights such as bicep curls, tricep extensions, flys, chest presses, shoulder shrugs and elbow raises. After all that we use the Swiss ball for core work by balancing on it while we do more weights, abs, bridge presses (working the glutes) and other exercises. We end class by doing mat work such as balancing on one arm and one leg and long plank holds. As advertised, the class is plenty tough but from my vantage point no one backs down or wimps out or even whines any.
Lisa Cooper is the matriarch of Group Exercise at the Little Rock Athletic Club and I’ve waited a long time to take my first class from her (she teaches 4 per week at the LRAC). Lisa is the Club’s Fitness Director and the coordinator of all Group Exercise at all four of our clubs. That means that Lisa keeps track of 80-90 instructors who combined teach 230 classes a week. This is a monumental undertaking but Lisa somehow makes it look easy. It isn’t easy though.
Lisa has been the Fitness Director at the LRAC for more than 20 years. We lured her away from her native Minnesota and while it may have come as a big surprise, Little Rock grew on her and Lisa decided to put down roots here – lucky for us. Her sisters Krissa and Holly eventually followed Lisa to the land of milk and honey (and mosquitoes) – so now it’s a family affair.
Lisa leading a Step class 'back in the day' (that's my sister Katherine on the right)
Along with being a fitness expert and group exercise maven, Lisa is also a Registered Dietician. You will NEVER catch her eating a donut or much of anything else that’s “bad” for you. Instead, she is a true model of fitness, a former competitive runner and happy mother to son Luke.
Lisa and Luke with Susan Garrett at the JCCA Walk for CommUNITY
In class this morning there are about 16 fit women and little 'ol me. The $25 gift certificate for this class goes to long time member and Pryme Tyme regular Cathy Sanders.