Lacey Lafayette is “spreading good health” with her business Inspire Me Fitness.
She sees so many people struggle, looking for the next diet or exercise plan.
“I feel like if I was able to turn my life around … I could help other people do it,” she said. “I feed off other people’s successes.”
After she had her son, Haden, 10, Mrs. Lafayette got sick and was in the hospital for about a week with congestive heart failure.
“It opened my eyes,” she said. “The only way I was going to watch him grow up was changing my life.”
She was 20 years old and in heart failure. She needed to shed 120 pounds and started simple, putting her son in a stroller and walking him around the block. She joined a boot camp in Houston. Within two years, she lost the weight and has kept it off. It became her passion, and she wanted to spread it to others.
Mrs. Lafayette, 31, grew up in Smithville, near Austin, and moved to Tyler to attend Tyler Junior College. She was going to school to become a sonographer when she changed direction and became a certified personal trainer.
“I never looked back,” she said. “I’ve been so happy ever since.”
She worked as a personal trainer in Houston before moving back to Tyler four years ago and started training others out of her home. In April, she opened Inspire Me Fitness at the corner of East Fifth Street and Old Omen Road.
She offers group training and focuses her classes on weight loss, nutrition and goal setting (wellness coaching). She has become a certified nutrition specialist and wellness coach and specializes in personal training those who want or need to lose a significant amount of weight or move over to a healthy lifestyle.
“My goal is to inspire people … and help them inspire each other,” she said of why she named her business Inspire Me Fitness. She hopes to help people get healthy and see them pay it forward to others.
“The more people you surround yourself with who are struggling the same way you are, the more likely you are to succeed,” she said, adding that they all share tips and ideas in her classes.
Mrs. Lafayette only has two small groups she trains now but is expanding with a new schedule, offering classes six days a week. She bases their workout and training on the clients’ abilities. As they advance, the workouts become more challenging.
She sees mostly women in her classes and offers childcare if requested in advance. She wants to keep the groups small — no larger than 10 to 15 people — especially since many people might need modified training and individualized help.
She said when a group meets for the first time, they take measurements, discuss basic nutrition and answer questions. The first workout includes physical assessments to see where everyone is. Classes always are different and depend on the group’s dynamic. It is more of a functional, fitness-type training than hardcore boot camp, she said.
During the second or third week, the group talks about goal setting, including nutritional goals. Meanwhile, Mrs. Lafayette checks in with her clients all the time.
“When you come to classes here you’re going to hear from me all the time,” she said.
After four weeks, the group takes their measurements again and starts over, setting new goals, physical assessments and changing workouts, which are three times a week, she said.
In between group classes, she offers personal training to individual clients.
Workout gear includes a few pieces of large exercise equipment, a punching bag, medicine balls, kettle bells, resistance bands, sand bells and step ups. She said she doesn’t have a lot of equipment because her goal is to teach people how to exercise using their body so they don’t have to have a full gym to get a workout. She also doesn’t have mirrors because she wants them to feel confident in what they are doing. It it is her job to make sure they are doing things correctly, she added.
Mrs. Lafayette wants to see people become healthier and feel better about themselves. She said of the biggest changes she sees in her clients, regardless of their physical changes, is their confidence level.
She has an inspiration wall that is empty now, but she plans to soon fill it with clients’ goals, as well as tips, quotes and before and after photos.
Inspire Me Fitness will host a “Yoga for Weight Loss,” instructed by Beth Lytle. The six-week program uses yoga, meditation, relaxation and conscious eating to facilitate mind-body lifestyle changes to reach and sustain ideal weight. It will be from noon to 1 p.m. on Mondays and costs $150, including materials and online support.
Mrs. Lafayette hopes also to add Zumba classes soon.