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Nearly eight years ago, in the summer of 2016, Julia Ogilvie bumped into Katelyn Kaese in downtown Glen Ellyn. “I hadn't seen Katelyn in years, maybe since high school, but I'd known her since my family moved to Glen Ellyn when I was in fifth grade,” says Julia. “We caught up and quickly realized we both had one-year-old sons. Katelyn suggested I give one of her barre classes at RISE a try.” 

While Julia hadn't been to group exercise classes since having her son, she decided to follow Katelyn's advice. "As Katelyn predicted, the barre class was a perfect way back to group fitness, and a few classes a week soon became a daily habit," says Julia. "Today, RISE is my moving meditation, my calorie burn, my way to feel strong and confident and bring balance to my day. I'm so grateful for that one chance encounter 8 years ago. I gained an entire community and more."

Today, if life allows, Julia’s an everyday RISER. “I genuinely have a better day when I get to go to class,” she says. “My mind and body feel it, especially on those days where I was dragging my feet a little. As Katelyn says, you never regret getting to class! It’s not just the physical workout, but getting to be around like-minded people, starting your day with a friendly conversation and then, yes, a butt-kicking workout.”

Julia, we’re so happy you bumped into Katelyn and that you’ve chosen to RISE with us for so long. Congratulations on being our RISER of the Month.

What sets RISE above and beyond other workouts for you?

You've heard it here before folks, but it's the instructors! Each RISE instructor brings it to their classes. Energy, expertise and fun. They keep us (and our muscles and minds) challenged. Plus, I love trying new classes, and every time I try a new RISE class, like Caitlin’s cycle or Renee’s body sculpt recently, I think, “Oh wow! I loved that!” And I feel grateful all over again for being in the right place.

What are your short and long-term workout goals?

I think one is wrapped up in the next. I try to make the choices today that will lead to a healthy tomorrow. Healthy food choices for myself and my family. Movement to feel strong today and keep me moving in the future! RISE is all about this. It’s not just a gym. It’s a community of wellness. Plus, my kids see it all and that means a lot to me as their mom.

What specifically, other than format or schedule, do you like about RISE?

For me, RISE came to me at a time when I hadn’t found my mom friends yet in town and I was working from home with a one-year-old. To say I was feeling isolated would be an understatement. Finding a place in the RISE community meant so much then and still does today. It’s a daily reminder that I am so lucky that I can move in a way that makes me feel strong. It also gives me resets throughout the year with Challenges where I can really take the time to check in on myself. Bonus, I’ve been able to get some of my best friends to become fellow RISERs and built lasting friendships through RISE.


What Rise class gets you feeling the most mentally and physically amped?

Can I say all of them? I love everything from the rhythmic meditation you can find in Katelyn’s cycle and barre classes when you get into that certain zone. I probably have pretty terrible RBF if you catch me at this point in my workout, but my head's in a great space, I promise. I also love realizing I actually can pick up that heavier weight (thanks Allison and Trish). And I love the cardio/strength burn in Lauren’s circuits classes.

What’s your biggest challenge in getting to class, and how do you combat that challenge?

Right now it’s the combination of when my husband is travelling and the kids are home sick from school (or have a snow day). I am lucky though that I get be home with my kiddos and pop on a Zoom recording when the time is right on those especially crazy days.


What’s your athletic background?

I took dance growing up and throughout high school, everything from classical ballet to hip hop. That turned into cheerleading and dance squad in high school. I also played softball growing up and in high school.


What’s your best healthy living tip?

Find joy in movement. I am often at my happiest, calmest, strongest, clearest while in class or out on a walk. And listen to your body while you’re at it (I’m still working on this one!). I mean this as simply as asking for modifications in class when needed, which all the RISE instructors are amazing about, but also that our body and mind are teammates. It’s important to listen in and allow that connection.


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