New fitness facility in Alexandria offers affordable personal training

Care, Health & Fitness offers inexpensive personal training without a contract. And owners Cicely Hickman and Claire Burkhardt plan to keep it that way.

“We charge $35 an hour,” says Burkhardt. “Our aim is never to go beyond that. You get the full hour. We also offer nutritional coaching and behavioral health when it comes to your approach to food and the like. We are both NASM (National Academy of Sports Medicine) health coaches.”

Hickman said they train their current clients at their new location, which takes the place where Boutique on the Lakes was located at 94 Versailles Blvd., Building H. There will be an open house on Saturday from 11am to 3pm where people can meet them and learn what they offer.

“We’ve been getting some attention lately and it’s been doing well,” Hickman said.

Hickman explained that their facility is not a gym, but a place where clients can receive one-on-one personal training.

“You come in. You talk to us and book a session,” she said. “The first session is free. Then let us know when you would like to come back.”

Each session lasts a full hour. Clients also learn about nutrition and wellness tailored to their individual needs, Hickman said. What may work for one person may not work for another due to genetics and lifestyle. So they work to help people understand how their bodies work, how unique they are, and how to have fun getting fit.

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Hickman said they’re always available to clients if they have questions throughout the day, if they have nutritional questions about what they’re eating, or if they need stretching exercises for sore muscles.

“That’s why we call it ‘CARE,’ because we take care of the entire process,” Hickman said. “’C’ stands for ‘commit’ because you have to commit to the process. “A” stands for “admit” – admit that you need help with your health and fitness. The “R” is meant to “retrain” your mind in how you think about exercise, food, and how you think about yourself. We even work on self esteem because we want you to love yourself and love the process. And then “E” stands for “encourage” because we want to do our best to encourage you to stay fit and healthy and keep going, and we want you to encourage others to do the same with their lives. That’s why we call it Care, Health & Fitness.”

In addition to personal training, starting next month, they will be introducing a step class on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 6 to 7 p.m. that will be simple, easy and fun, Hickman said.

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“Something to get people out,” she said. “The course is $10 per session. And the classes are just for fun. People who work late or don’t have time for a personal trainer can just come out and do a group session with a few friends.”

They will be doing a step class at the grand opening so people can see what it’s like. In the future, they plan to host different types of classes.

“We plan to switch it over,” said Burkhardt. “We have a step class, a line dance class. We’ll probably have some sort of holiday course when it’s around the holidays. Anything fun to get people moving is what we’re going to do. Maybe even some yoga.”

Some people see exercise as a chore and don’t enjoy it, Hickman said.

“We enjoy it,” she says. “And we will always do fun things in the community. We want to reach the community and show them what we have to offer.”

When they were looking for a place to open their business, Hickman said they looked at others in Alexandria and felt that Versailles would suit them best. She has watched housing developments and businesses expand in the area.

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“I’ve lived in Alexandria for the last 17 years and I live on this side of town,” she said. “I live near Twin Bridges and I’ve seen this part of town grow.”

“After speaking with Cicely, I knew she would be successful because a fitness facility would fit perfectly with the mall’s current tenant mix,” said Justin Giallonardo, president of real estate at D’Argent Companies. “The Versailles area continues to grow rapidly and this store is another great addition to come for years to come.”

Burkhardt said they looked at other places and it was a choice between Versailles Boulevard or Highway 28 West.

“To be perfectly honest, I love the fact that we got Versailles because I’m from Colorado,” she said. “I’ve seen a development like the one in Versailles in my hometown where they started with a grocery store and now they have a Target, a police facility – I mean it’s huge now. So I see a lot of growth and development along the way.”

“It’s such a good neighborhood,” Hickman said. “It has a lot to offer and we have a lot to offer people. We just wanted to be where we can help more people.”