MOUNT CARMEL — What started out as a fun way to exercise in MC Deming’s detached garage has developed into a fast-growing, workout phenomenon in Mount Carmel.

When the Deming family moved to town from Leroy, Illinois, they knew what they were leaving behind.

“This is where we wanted to raise our family,” MC Deming said. “But we were going to miss the Replex the most. This small town had a huge rec-center, and I was involved and regularly going two or three times a week to these fitness classes.”

So Deming, who has a background in physical education and coaching, decided to create a similar group exercise experience here in Mount Carmel.

“I was a college volleyball player at Illinois State and I feel like I got really good training as far as how to actually make yourself stronger and see results. I had really good trainers myself in college sports and also in my fitness classes post college,” she said.

Deming’s husband, Micky, who has a background in business helped her get the idea off the ground.

“You can have a passion for something, but then not have any idea how to turn that into a business,” Deming said.

She started hosting free classes in her detached garage just to see if people were interested, but quickly outgrew the space after hosting four classes there a week with around ten people in every class. Deming and her family attend Parkview Christian Church, and they were willing to rent space for MTC Fit at the Parkview Legion on Market Street.

Now, Deming hosts four classes there during the week, with co-instructors Elise Thomason, Samantha Newkirk, Samantha Buss and Morgan Meador.

A class called 3–2–1 Shred is hosted at the Legion every Tuesday from 5:30 to 6:15 p.m. and Thursday from 6:30 to 7:15 p.m. The high intensity interval training (HIIT) workout combines three minutes of cardio, two minutes of strength and one minute of abdominal exercises that are continued throughout the 45 minute class.

Move & Groove, a lower-impact class, is held every Tuesday from 6:30 to 7:10 p.m. Deming said the class is ideal for adults ages 45 and up, or active adults who want a workout that involves no jumping, twisting or floor work. Cardio is mixed with resistance band strength training in the 40 minute class.

Dance Cardio Shred held on Thursdays from 5:30 to 6:15 p.m. is a class designed to burn fat, improve aerobic and muscular endurance, as well as coordination, rhythm, mood and confidence. The 45 minute class consists of five or six dance cardio songs and 20 minutes of aerobic and resistance training.

Deming shows modifications for different exercises in each class to make them easier or harder, so workouts can be tailored to any fitness level. Ages for those attending MTC Fit classes have ranged from 14 to 77-years-old.

Aside from enjoying the fun and social aspect of group exercise, Deming said it keeps people accountable to their fitness goals.

“A lot of the people who have been coming to the classes have been saying ‘this has been really helpful for me to keep me accountable and get me motivated because there are other people there working just as hard as me and pushing me,” she said.

In the future, Deming is considering numerous possibilities for the growth of MTC Fit.

“I want to add an early morning class called Rise and Grind for people to attend before work,” she said.

Deming also has ideas for a toddler Motor & Music class for preschool-age children and a class for senior citizens, but all of her ideas are just ideas until additional classes are feasible.

“Everyone needs something to keep them moving and everyone needs something that gets them around other people to have fun and socialize. For me, group fitness does just that and I hope to be able, through MTC Fit, to provide that for others,” she said.

To be an MTC Fit member, the cost is $40 a month, which pays for unlimited fitness classes. A punch card is available for $35 that allows participation in five classes, and a single class is priced at $9.

For more information and updates on classes, like MTC Fit on Facebook.

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