By Lisa Balschunat
Jennifer Ricupero is all about fitness, self
discovery and the outdoors. She recently
opened a studio, RAW Fitness, at 79 Beekman
St. in Saratoga Springs, but spends little time
“I currently have three scheduled classes
here, but I am willing to meet people where
they are,” she said. “I want to get people outdoors.
Deep down we all crave to be outside,
it’s human nature.
combining functional fitness with recreation
to be healthy and happy for life, using the most
natural resources we have: the outdoors.”
“The idea of ‘RAW’ is being ‘ready and willing’ to do what you love, or to find a physical activity that makes you happy, and then weaving some physical and mental goals into that activity to develop the body as a whole,” Ricupero said.
“You might just be just deciding to get your body moving, or you might be looking to keep your body fluid as you get ready for an event or the next season’s recreational activity.”
“You might enjoy cycling, hiking, jogging or walking, or snowshoeing, for example. I can design a fitness program for you that builds on the activities that you already do, adding strengthening, cardio and flexibility, without you having to go into a gym surrounded by machines and judgment,” she added.
While Ricupero assists men with endurance programs she said she spends much of her time educating women about “what they can do, not about what they can’t do.” She said it feels like “a calling” to encourage women to forget about the latest and greatest exercise fads and to forget about the physical expectations society has placed on them.
“I am encouraging women to be real and realistic about their bodies, and about their fitness choices,” she said. “Many women think about fitness instead of doing it because they are afraid to even go into a gym.”
“Fitness is about progression, not perfection,” she emphasized. “If you’re depressed, you have to move. If you’re frustrated, you have to move. If you’re looking to change your lifestyle or your nutrition habits, you have to find a way to enjoy movement.”
Ricupero, 31, has been teaching exercise classes and educating people about healthy lifestyles for 12 years. She was previously a fitness director at the Fort Orange Club, Albany; Sattlebrook Resort, Tampa; Phoenix House Drug and Rehabilitation Center, Burlington, Vt.; and Green Mountain at Fox Run Wellness Retreat for Women, Ludlow, Vt. She holds a master’s degree in education, a bachelor’s in recreation and leisure management, with a minor in business administration, and is certified by the Aerobic and Fitness Association of America.
RAW Fitness presently offers studio classes on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays, and schedules personal training sessions for individuals and couples, and groups sessions for corporate team building and preventive health at any time.
To schedule a free session or class call 810-1728. For more details, visit RAW Fitness on-line at www.rawfitnesssaratoga.com or on Facebook.