On the brink of not just a new year — but also a new decade — Samantha Taylor encourages women to think about what they want their life to be like 10 years from now.
She’s built a business from women’s success stories, like that of her client Lynn Smith, who will turn 80 in 2020, and has been a member of Samantha Taylor Fitness for more than 10 years.
“The investment Lynn made when she was 69 years old has totally transformed her life,” says Samantha. “She’s in amazing health and physical condition, has no medical issues and takes no medication.”
Samantha says it’s hard to imagine what Lynn’s life would be like if she hadn’t made the decision a decade ago to join Samantha Taylor Fitness.
Samantha is something of a local legend — a Certified Personal Trainer who began her career 27 years ago and launched her own business 20 years ago. Since then, she says she has trained more than 7,500 women. There are now five Tampa Bay-area Samantha Taylor Fitness studios, including Wesley Chapel and nearby Land O’Lakes, plus Carrollwood, Westchase and Palm Harbor.
The Wesley Chapel location has its own standalone building off of S.R. 56, near I-75, in the Cypress Ridge Professional Center.
Samantha moved the studio there in 2018 from its former location on Bruce B. Downs Blvd. The new studio is bigger, with a larger personal training room, specialty rubber floors, and a private, first-floor entrance.
It’s a women-only environment where clients choose Fitness Boot Camp classes for group training or private or semi-private personal training. All workouts last just 30 minutes.
But, Samantha Taylor Fitness is not just about working out.
“The only way to make lifelong, lasting changes is to learn to eat,” explains Samantha. “It’s not about diet or starving yourself, but figuring out how to eat in a way that you really enjoy that is simple and maintainable.”
She says people can diet temporarily, but if they don’t learn to eat in a way that’s realistic and sustainable for them, they won’t stick to it.
That’s why Samantha Taylor Fitness has a full-time, licensed nutritionist on staff. “It’s huge because in the state of Florida, it’s not legal to give out custom diets unless you have a license,” she says.
So, Samantha hired Shannon Barker, R.D. (Registered Dietitian), to do just that. “We have a new menu plan every month with recipes,” says Samantha. “A lot of people like new ideas for what to eat, so we provide that.”
Shannon also works with any members who have specific dietary needs to customize the menus. For example, there are options for people who want to stick to a keto diet plan. “The keto diet is the most popular eating plan in the world right now,” Samantha says, “and we have easy, simple-to-follow plans for people who want to eat that way.”
Samantha says Shannon also offers webinars on nutrition topics, such as how to pre-prep food and understanding thyroid issues. She also offers weekly group nutrition coaching calls, where any member can call in and ask questions.
Members of Samantha Taylor Fitness also get monthly 3D body scans, where a machine takes measurements and analyzes body fat digitally.
“People have been loving it,” says Samantha. “It’s much better than only measuring your progress by the scale. You want to see the inches, too, and how your body is physically changing.”
Get Off Those Meds, Ladies!
While others may notice the physical differences, Samantha says there are other important changes, too, such as reversing disease and getting off medications.
She says Lora Burns is a member of Samantha Taylor Fitness who has lost 72 pounds and completely reversed her type 2 (adult onset) diabetes. She is now off all of the medication she previously needed to fight the disease.
At Samantha Taylor Fitness, women also find a supportive community, which Samantha says makes it fun and helps women stay on track.
“We are highly focused on the clients’ experience and helping them to have even more accountability, more recognition, more involvement in the program and getting the most out of it,” explains Samantha.
Heather Weaver has been working out at Samantha Taylor Fitness for the past 6 months or so.
“I love that it’s a community of women,” she says. “We all respect each other and are all there for similar goals – to lose weight or gain strength.”
And, while Heather says those were her two goals, she has found so much more.
She says she’s learned to eat in a way that is much healthier, such as avoiding sugar, that has become her lifestyle, so it’s not a fad. “Now my husband and children are on board with that, too.”
Heather adds that when she had previously tried other ways to lose weight, she would eat different things than her family. But with Samantha Taylor Fitness, she follows the menus provided by the nutritionist, which she says are so amazing that her family loves them, too.
“I was shocked at how I could take things out of a certain meal, and like it even more,” she says. Now, her whole family is eating good, healthy, nutritious meals together, skipping fast food and eating healthy snacks.
“It becomes a habit and it’s a good habit,” she explains. “It’s not work and it’s not weird; you’ve built that habit.”
Heather says she has gone from a size 16 to a size 10, but that’s almost an afterthought.
“I don’t even think about that,” she says. “I think about how I feel good all the time and have so much energy. I used to want to take a nap in the middle of the day and the thought of that now is bizarre to me.”
She says she loves the sense of community, too.
“Samantha does seminars and webinars and events, and I’ve never gone to a gym that does that before,” says Heather, who has even brought her husband along to events, such as a food tasting. “I like that it’s a women’s studio, but it’s nice for him to see the people I work out with and the people I cherish.”
Samantha is offering several programs for the new year, including a free webinar on Saturday, January 4, called “2020 Goal Achieving Master Class.” There’s also a four-week New Year’s Challenge that starts mid-January, and she has some free motivational tools to help get women ready for the new year.
To learn more about these programs, visit SamanthaTaylorFitness.com/2020.
“So many people have good intentions to set goals, but statistically, most fall off within the first two weeks,” Samantha says. “A way to make 2020 different is for you is to hire a proven company with a track record of amazing success.”
The Wesley Chapel Samantha Taylor Fitness Studio is located is at 2609 Ridgebrook Dr., Wesley Chapel. For more information, visit SamanthaTaylorFitness.com or call (813) 377-3739.