West Cook YMCA

personal Training


Interested in Personal Training? Let us know: Healthyliving@westcookymca.org


AnesiAmy Anesi
Fitness Instructor

Teaching at the Y since October of 2004. I have always been a Y member, and when I moved to River Forest, the Y was the only place that offered Indoor Cycling at 6AM on several mornings. I love the Y members, and helping folks get a good "sweat on” to begin their day.

Certifications: YMCA Certified Spin and Group Exercise Instructor



ApplebaumDan Applebaum
Personal Trainer

I’ve been a member at the West Cook YMCA for as long as I can remember. I took swimming lessons here when I was a kid, and I worked out here while I was home from college. I’ve always been a part of the Y, but more recently I have put a lot of effort into improving my overall health, and the Y was the place that provided me everything I needed to do so. After consistently working out for the past 3 years I found myself getting immersed in the art of improving myself as well as others. I have played and coached lacrosse for 12 years now and have found coaching extremely enjoyable and since personal training is another type of coaching, it made sense to get involved in it. I became certified as a personal trainer in June, but was a NCAA Division II lacrosse player from 2011-2013 and was always involved in sports throughout my entire life. My personal philosophy around training is just like my philosophy around coaching; I want to put you in a position to succeed and become the absolute best version of yourself that you can be. Watching someone improve their abilities over time is extremely rewarding and even more so when those abilities translate to a healthier and happier lifestyle. I have seen the improvements I have made both physically and mentally through working out consistently, and that has inspired me to help other people do the same by instructing them to properly set goals, educate them about overall health and wellness, and provide motivation along the way.

Certifications: ACE Personal Trainer



BennettAlex Bennett
Personal Trainer

I've been a trainer at the Y since September, though I'm also a former lifeguard, swim instructor, and skating instructor. I came to the Y for the sense of community here: that's why I knew I wanted to work here, too---to give back to that community. I love coaching and working with clients to achieve their goals because it's so rewarding to see them making progress, and because we have fun together doing it!

Working toward becoming an ACSM Certified Cancer Exercise Trainer. I'm also a 2-time Ironman finisher, with #3 planned for 2017.

Certifications: ACSM Certified Personal Trainer



BertramsSam Bertrams
Personal Trainer

I grew up going to the YMCA to play basketball, swim and exercise in my hometown, Dayton, Ohio. I always loved the fun, friendly atmosphere at the Y. I have always been an athlete so fitness has always been a big part of my life. My philosophy about training is that everyone should have a plan unique to their own needs. My biggest goal as a personal trainer is to help people achieve their own goals, but I also like to make it fun. I don't want my clients to dread going to the gym. I want them to look forward to it!

Certifications: ACSM Certified Personal Trainer



FossierJay Fossier
Personal Trainer

Although I grew up in the southwest suburbs of Chicago I have spent some time living in other areas of the country. While living in San Francisco I became a Little League Baseball Coach and learned to really enjoy helping kids to achieve their goals. While there I also began to pursue my own goal of becoming a healthier person, something I had not always done. Once I realized what I could do to improve and transform my own health I became inspired to help others along that path. I have lived in Oak Park since the Fall of 2015 and if you recognize me you may have literally seen me running around town. I love Oak Park and the people here and I wanted to take my desire to help people achieve their fitness goals into this wonderful community. So I came to the YMCA to do just that and I would love to help you get where you want to be with your fitness goals.

Certifications: ACE Personal Trainer



JellinekAlyssa Jelinek
Fitness Instructor

Fitness instructor at Y for 5 years. I started taking a few classes at the Y and loved the community and positive atmosphere. I decided to become an instructor and you can find me here almost everyday. I am passionate about healthy living and fitness and enjoy sharing that passion with the wonderful Y community! I have made great friendships here and the Y is one my favorite places!

Certifications: ACE Group Fitness Instructor



OlszewskiLaura Olszewski
Personal Trainer/Fitness Instructor

I have currently been training at the Y since August, but have been a Certified Personal Trainer for 8 years. The West Cook Y is my first YMCA and I could not be happier! The Y can help in any and every way possible to improve your overall well-being. What I enjoy most about this profession is that I can help empower people, both physically and mentally, and through this work, I am gifted with building relationships with very amazing people.

Certifications: ACSM Certified Personal Trainer, ACSM Inclusive Trainer, Certified SPINNING Instructor, ACE Group Fitness Instructor, Y-Balance Certified, YMCA's Diabetes' Prevention Program Lifestyle Coach, LIVESTRONG at the YMCA Certified Instructor, Enhance Fitness Instructor



PagniLila Pagni
Fitness Instructor

Exercise? Not me. I wasn't much into sports or exercise while growing but I always loved riding my bike, and I wouldn't have learned to swim without my lessons at the Lakeview YMCA in Chicago. But it was through the influence of my husband that I began taking Tae Kwon Do and became a Registered 2nd Degree Black Belt in my 50s that I learned to enjoy exercise and working out.Then we returned to the Chicago area we looked for the place to exercise that would give us the most for our money. West Cook YMCA won and I began to participate in the Fit Over 50 classes. I offered to substitute teach if necessary and later was encouraged to become a Silver Sneakers instructor. I have been teaching those classes for the past 3 years and enjoy the participants who make my day!

Besides the Wellness activities, the YMCA offers so much more. I am proud and privileged to have been a member of the Diversity and Inclusion Committee and the activities and work that was accomplished.

Certifications: Silver Sneakers Classic (Range of Motion & Muscle Strengthening); Circuit; Yoga; Splash, LIVESTRONG at the YMCA Certified Instructor



Jaime Pena
Personal Trainer

I was born and raised in Mexico. I came to Chicago in 2008.Ever since I was a child had struggled with my weight and in 2005 I started to learn more about nutrition and different diets to help me stay healthy. However in 2013, I decided to take full control of my health. In 2014, a friend of mine mentioned to me about the Institute for Integrative Nutrition and I graduated in 2015 as a Certified Health Coach. My motivation is to help people become healthier and happier in all areas of their lives, whether the goal is to lose weight, increase energy or sleep better at night. I joined the West Cook YMCA family in March of 2016 as a Diabetes Prevention Program Lifestyle Coach and I was also offered the opportunity to become a personal trainer.

Certifications: Certified Health Coach by the Institute for Integrative Nutrition, Take Charge of Your Diabetes Certification, ACE Certified Personal Trainer (in process)



PerezSergio Perez
Personal Trainer/Fitness Instructor

I have been a certified personal trainer since 2007. The sense of family and community drew me to the YMCA organization. I get the most enjoyment being able to teach clients/members about physical fitness and how to customize their workouts according to their needs.

Certifications: ACE Personal Trainer, ACE Group Fitness Instructor, RKC (Russian Kettlebell Certified), Battleropes Certified (John Brookfield), Functional Movement Screen Certified, Selective Functional Movement Assesment, Y-Balance Test Certified, HKC (Hardstyle Kettlebell Certified), Diabetes Prevention Program Lifestyle Coach, LIVESTRONG at the YMCA Certified Instructor, Enhance Fitness Instructor



PieartNicki Pieart
Fitness Instructor

I have been a certified athletic trainer for 11 years and teaching classes at the YMCA for 1.5 years. I moved to the area 9 years ago. I was looking for a gym where the focus was on community. The Y fit the bill perfectly. I enjoy all of the people at the Y, from the front desk staff to the class members to the residents. I have enjoyed having the Y as a part of my daily routine.I started at the Y as a member and quickly felt at home. I was challenged by the classes and made many fitness friends who were pushing me to reach new fitness goals. As I got more ingrained in the WCY, I decided I wanted to contribute to others success! So I started teaching group ex classes and have loved taking my class participants on their fitness journeys.

Certifications: MSEd--Exercise Physiology, Certified and Licensed Athletic Trainer



StelzerJenny Jocks Stelzer
Personal Trainer / Fitness Instructor

Group Fit Instructor since October 2014. Personal Trainer since February 2015. I grew up swimming at my hometown YMCA in Saginaw, MI. So, when I found my home in Oak Park, I found my Y, too. I love helping people find the joy in working to be their best.

Certifications: AFAA Certified Group Fitness Instructor and Personal Trainer



Suarez-AbrihamAnthony Suarez-Abraham
Fitness Instructor

I have been training as a road cyclist for over two decades. It has become a source of deep joy for me to now apply this knowledge as a Certified Spinning Instructor. We have been members of the Y for about six years. I believe in the mission of the Y to work towards the betterment of the common good. As such I couldn’t think of a better of place to continue building a culture of strong and healthy minds, bodies, and spirits. I am intensely passionate about training/teaching! Why? Because trainers/teachers have been—and continue to be—among the most influential persons in my life. Inspired by their greatness, I cherish the sacred opportunity to help shape the dreams of those interested in personal growth and development.

Certifications: Certified Spinning Instructor



TreeseErik Treese
Personal Trainer/Fitness Instructor

I have been teaching Group Fitness for 4 years, and Personal Training for 3 years. I grew up in a YMCA on the south side of Chicago so becoming a part of the West Cook family felt like coming home!   I was a new father (of 3 daughters now) and wanted a place to exercise as well as find fun things for my kids to do. I was also 80 lbs over weight and needed a supportive environment to get my health under control.  The Y helped me change my life! My mission is to create a safe and healthy world by leading consciously and the fitness and exercise business is the perfect place to live my mission! Also the 2012 West Cook YMCA Employee of the Year!

Certifications: NASM CPT, AFAA Group Fitness, LIVESTRONG at the YMCA Certified Instructor



WeissLinda Weiss
Personal Trainer

I have been training for over 10 years. I came to work at the Y because I like what it stands for, the Y is unique. I love being a trainer because I help people accomplish their goals. Generally my clients become good friends and they stay with me a long time.

Certifications: Certified Personal Trainer through the National Federation of Personal Trainers



WesleyLaura Temple Wesley
Fitness Instructor

I've been teaching at the YMCA for over 4 years now. I started working out at the Y after having my last baby. I was looking to get back into shape and to get some adult interaction. I started taking classes and quickly fell into a weekly routine and making alot of new friends. After about a year and half of taking classes I was approached to become a Sub for the Step class. This was not something I've ever thought about doing but gave it a try. Turns out I love instructing classes. I went on to teach Strictly Strength, Kickboxing, and eventually Spin. I love interacting with all the members and getting their morning started with a great Spin class.



WoodsonFelicity Woodson
Personal Trainer / Fitness Instructor

I received a Bachelor's degree in Exercise Science and Fitness Management from Concordia University Chicago. My bachelor's program brought me into the West Cook YMCA as an intern in 2013. As an intern I fell in love with the Y community and decide to become a fitness instructor for the Y. During my three years of fitness experience I have had the opportunity of working with individuals of all ages and backgrounds. Through personal training and group fitness I have been able to educate and motivate others about healthy living. My ultimate goal is to encourage individuals and their families to find themselves in Freedom, Love and Optimism through Healthy Living.

Certifications: ACE Certified Personal Trainer, ACE Certfieid Group Fitness Instructor, SilverSneakers Certified Instructor, LIVESTRONG at the YMCA Certified Instructor, EnhanceFitness Instructor



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