INTERVIEW BY CHRIS TIESSEN; PHOTOS SUBMITTED BY F45

F45 is for everybody and every body. The gym’s intense, full-body training sessions – each forty-five minutes long and designed for both beginners and the most experienced of gym goers – are all about efficient programming and phenomenal results. A few weeks back, TOQUE’s Chris Tiessen interviewed two-time F45 franchise owner Maria Fearnall to find out what these workouts are all about:  

Can you tell us a bit about F45?
For sure. We provide heart-pumping, fun-filled workouts seven days a week – and even have a live DJ join us for Saturdays. With two certified coaches in every class, members get the experience of a group fitness environment while receiving the benefits of personal, one-on-one training. We offer our members great motivation, support, and education aimed at giving them the best experience inside and outside our studio. 

How did you get into the business?
I’ve been a competitive cheerleading coach for fifteen years and felt it was time to grow my coaching career into something new. After being a member at a fitness studio, I realized that what I enjoyed most about it was the personable coaches and the environment they provided. When I found out about F45 through a friend, my fiancé and I applied to be franchise owners. Two years and a pandemic later, we’ve successfully opened a franchise in Kitchener and are opening our second location at Gordon Square in the south end of Guelph – where I used to live.

What’s been your favourite part about opening your F45 gyms? 
I’ve loved watching a community grow organically. We did it in Kitchener and now we’re doing it again in Guelph. Oh, and finding our Manager and now co-owner, Mat.

I imagine that the business has had to pivot through the pandemic?
Yes, of course. Thankfully F45 headquarters put together a new format of workouts for use during lockdown – including F45 Live, designed for members who prefer to access our workouts from home, and F45 Circuit, designed for workouts in studio. The Circuit model provides the same great workout while allowing everyone to be socially distanced by at least two meters, with no shared equipment. 

Who’s the ideal client for F45?
It’s someone who’s wanting change and is ready to put in the work to get there. Folks who are ready to dive all in and enjoy the entire experience are those who will get the most out of our classes. 

When you’re not working at the gym, where are you eating around town? 
I’m a die-hard Bread Bar fan and a La Reina fanatic. I could honestly eat at those restaurants every day.