You’re trying to reshape your body, shedding both pounds and years. In desperation, you try every fad- pills, diets, gadgets, and gimmicks- that comes along. Most of these shrink your purse but do little else, other than convince you that you have “bad genetics.” Perhaps you don’t want to train at a health club because they can seem crowded, intimidating, expensive and a nuisance. So you try to train at home. But you haven’t much to train with, and there are distractions. Worst of all, there’s no one there to guide, push, motivate and educate you. Eventually you quit. And someone else buys your stuff at a garage-sale only to repeat your unhappy experience… You join a health-club and even manage to get there regularly. Congratulations! Nowadays most of these facilities are superbly-equipped and fantastic places to train. But in addition to the problems listed above, often the personal trainers at some fitness clubs are either barely out of high school or look as though they need as much help as you do! Some of them seem bored too- they’re paid to be there whether they train you or not, and they have to take everyone assigned to them. And because their bosses’ strings are being pulled from some corporate headquarters in Chicago, they’re only allowed to administer the “McDonald’s” equivalent of a workout, completely lacking in intensity or progression, geared to the lowest common denominator. Pushing you to your limit is too much work and too risky! But it’s better than nothing…

Insanity= doing the same thing over and over, expecting a different outcome.

“I have clients who take aerobics classes daily and are thin and flabby… just like they want to be. If I push them too hard, I end up with an open appointment where a client used to be. Look, as long as they’re willing to keep paying me for no results, I’m happy to oblige them!” -a top Center City Personal Trainer who wishes to remain anonymous


We’re about pushing you to your limits. No one else’s. Yours. Until you leave your “comfort zone” you will not see results. It’s impossible. The body is an adaptive mechanism. It does what it has to. Deprive it of food (“diets”), it will store fat. Deprive it of intense physical exertion, the muscle and bone will atrophy… but not the fat! Women are the worst offenders, because they don’t know any better. Just as sadly, most women don’t have a clue of their physical capabilities. No wonder most don’t make any progress…they’ve been conditioned not to try! You won’t find that here. We know more about what you can do than you do. Our program is based on what’s been proven to work: an increase in lean muscle mass and proportional reduction of body-fat. This includes intense free-weight training (bodybuilding) and increased (that’s right, increased!) food intake. We won’t waste your time with us doing a lot of cardio -you will do that on your own! It’s simple. But it’s hard. No “magic.” Unless you consider Nature magic. We do. We encourage you to learn, to question everything. This is an exploding field; there’s an unbelievable amount of excellent information accessible to everyone -books, magazines, videos and websites. We will steer you toward it, in some instances provide it and even quiz you on it! We have an extensive reference library here- books, magazines, videos and cassettes, all of which are available to you. The ARTICLES page contains media excerpts which you’ll find both informative and inspiring. In addition, this EXERCISE DIRECTORY page I created for a local Field Hockey training facility provides a wealth of exercise demos. Before you go any further, please click on this: MUSCLE, The New Femininity .


Our Place

If you don’t like public gyms (especially post-pandemic!), you may prefer our well-equipped private studio, located on a lovely country estate in Chester Springs, just off Rt. 113. (Btw, the Cottage at Vixen Hill Farm is a Guest House available for vacation rental via www.vrbo.com )


It includes around two tons of free-weights and over twenty machines (including nine Nautilus pieces) to provide a wide variety of movements. Variety is crucial. Without it, eventually you’ll become bored. So will your muscles. And progress will stop. As you’ll see by clicking on these thumbnails, we have plenty here to keep you from getting bored!

gym1 gym2 gym3 gym4 gym5 gym6 gym7

Your place

We can train you in your own residence if you prefer. This way you don’t have to drive anywhere -or worry about how you look! You can wear whatever you want, play your own music… Ideally you should have some weights/equipment, but if not, we’ll bring along what’s needed.

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Want to make it even more fun and save a few dollars? Get a friend or neighbor to join us, and you’ll both benefit! Their place We can also train you at your health-club or YMCA, if their management allows it. Be sure to check first; some clubs discourage this in order to get you to use their staff. Often a discreet word in advance to the manager can get you around this (especially at membership-renewal time!).




Q & A

But if I lift weights won’t I “accidentally” get too big and muscular?

Uh… yeah! If you ever figure out how to do that, please tell us – maybe you don’t want to become richer than Oprah overnight but we wouldn’t mind! No intelligent woman really believes she’s going to get “too big and muscular.” But a lot of women will use this as an excuse not to push themselves into the realm of results. Please go back and read MUSCLE, The New Femininity.

What’s the story with Renita, the girl in this article and on your poster?

She’s a close friend (and occasional visitor here), a magnificent woman who’s living proof of our principles. In addition to what you’ve read, Renita’s also been a bodybuilding champion and squatted for repetitions with over 400 pounds… we have it on video and can show it to you! Does she look “too big and muscular” to you? Again, all this is without drugs. For more on Renita, click here: Renita Harris.

Wow…she’s inspiring! Any others?

Sure! How about a woman who started bodybuilding at the age of 39? My friend Linda Wood-Hoyte is in her 70s now and still training.   linda_1

What about your clients?

Ok…check out: Leslie

Why do you focus on women? Do you train men too?

Yes, but we specialize in training women because they’re more in need of our approach. Face it -most men aren’t intimidated by weight-training, whereas women have been completely biased and blinded to its rewards by a culture which prizes the results of anorexia and cosmetic surgery!

How do I know if it’s right for me?

You don’t! The truth is that if you’re not committed 100% to change, no one can change you. But don’t you owe it to yourself to give it a look? The consultation is free, and you can even schedule to watch a live training session. But we will be evaluating you as well; if you’re not serious, trust us- this isn’t for you, and we’ll tell you so.

How long, how often?

That’s up to you. We recommend that you train with us twice a week, and again on your own twice a week. Our sessions last around an hour and are governed by workout completion, not by the clock.

What about food? Do you prescribe diets?

Technically, only a registered dietician is allowed to prescribe diets. And we hate the word “diet”…whatever eating plan you adopt should be for the long haul. But we will evaluate your eating and make suggestions, along with giving you samples of proven eating plans you can try.

Can I bring a friend along?

Please do… this has been our most effective selling tool! And if you want to be trained together, you can both save money by paying a combined fee.

Do you work with teens?

Absolutely. In fact, this is the most critical time to reach them, when they are forming many of the lifestyle habits which will be with them for life. We strongly believe you should keep them involved in team sports as much as possible. But we can help them increase strength during the off-season to improve their future performance. Weight-training, once shunned by the mainstream sports establishments, is now embraced as fundamental to all sports. Even Olympic figure-skaters pump iron -Michelle Kwan was shown on the cover of Newsweek curling a dumbbell! We’ve created an inspirational/educational site for youngsters and their moms: www.teamvalkyries.org And we’re even doing a pilot for a special new training program called MoDa (MothersDaughters). Check it out! soccersisters

Undine, Alyssa and Hilary Peeples

What are your credentials?

In addition to having weight-trained for 30 years, I’ve been Nationally-Certified by both ACE and NSCA (National Strength and Conditioning Association). I also hold the NSCA’s Certified Strength & Conditioning Specialist (CSCS) credential. I’ve been involved in advancing women’s bodybuilding/fitness since 1990 (many top amateur and professional female physique-athletes are photographed here for magazines) have written numerous articles for fitness magazines (see ARTICLES). I’m also a Licensed and Board-Certified (NCTMB) Massage Therapist. There are two other “advantages” I have over many personal trainers. One is my non-athletic background; I was very thin, fragile and timid as a kid (a certified “wimp”), never much of an athlete – couldn’t make any varsity teams- even in a private school with only 15 boys in my graduating class! So I can sympathize with those of similar circumstances. The other advantage is my age… I’m in my mid-fifties, which should give me greater credibility than some college kid -heck, we were all bursting with testosterone and energy at that age- what can he prove to you? That being said, I lead by example; I “walk the walk.” I’m usually up at around 6am most mornings pushing up iron, handling more poundage in some instances, as I did in my 30s- not bad for a sixty-something!

Jami & Charles M.A.D.4 007c  

With Jami Appenzeller, Publisher of PhillyFIT 6:15 am: out of the rack… and into the rack!

What are your prerequisites?

As noted above, we’re selective. You must be motivated and willing to work hard, both here and on your own. If you’re not willing to do what’s proven to give results, why even bother? And if you’re a smoker or heavy drinker, we won’t work with you until you’ve succeeded in abandoning those habits, since it would be a waste of your time and money, not to mention dangerous. We can work within minor medical limitations, but you’ll need to get your physician’s approval if you have medical issues or are over 35. Click here to see our Screening Questionnaire

Other questions?

Call us at 610 324-3306(cell). Or e-mail us here