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SE C T I ON 2 Community December 9, 2009 ■ News of local people and A LSO INSIDE C A LE N DA R 23 |R E A L events in the community. E S TAT E 29 |C L AS S I F I E D S 26 CREATING A HAPPY BODY WOODSIDE COUPLE STRESSES INNER AND OUTER FITNESS WITH HAPPY BODY PROGRAM Aniela and Jerzy Gregorek in their home gym. Below: Client Allison Studdiford meditates after her session with the Gregoreks. See additional photos at BY NATALIE JABBAR Special to The Almanac PHOTOS BY MICHELLE LE “T hink of your body as the piano. You are the pianist — we are the tuners.” Those are the last words you might expect to come out of the mouths of two Olympic weightlifters turned fitness coaches. But Woodside’s Aniela and Jerzy Gregorek defy convention in so many aspects of their lives. After coming to the United States from Poland in 1986 as political refugees during the Solidarity movement, the Gregoreks found work as personal trainers in Los Angeles. In addition to starting and coaching the UCLA weightlifting team and training clients in their own home, they also found time to earn master’s of fine arts degrees in creative writing. In 2003, Aniela and Jerzy moved to their sylvan Woodside home because they thought Northern California would be a better place to raise their daughter, Natalie, who is now 5 years old. Over the years, Aniela and Jerzy have developed an integrative program informed by their life experiences, from their work as professional athletes and trainers to their skills in writing and translating poetry. What they found is that all of their clients loosely desired the same outcome: youthfulness. Their program, called The Happy Body, helps people achieve what they have deemed the six primary qualities of youthfulness: flexibility, strength, speed, leanness, ideal body weight, and good posture. At 50 and 55 years old, Aniela and Jerzy embody those youthful standards. Their bodies are tight and limber, and they still compete in world weightlifting championships. But what you really notice when you’re in the room with the Gregoreks is a sense of unclouded calm that emanates from them. And that, ultimately, is what they want everybody to be able to achieve. “When you exercise, you should feel joy,” Jerzy said. In January 2010, the Gregoreks will be releasing “The Happy Body: The Simple Science of Nutrition, Exercise, and Relaxation.” Peppered with anecdotes, metaphors, and poetic turns of phrase, the friendly, 300-page book is a step-by-step guide that allows you to become your own lifestyle coach. This has always been the Gregoreks’ primary goal as “tuners” who encourage the body to create their own music. “You cannot help people if they depend on you,” Jerzy said. CAN THIS BODY BE HAPPY? ’m a cynical gal. So when I got this assignment, I Iprobably thought what many of you readers out there are thinking: “Really, another fitness program?” But this cynical gal is also horribly out of shape and a firm believer in fate. So I pushed that thought aside and decided that if I was really going to understand this program, I would have to give it a whirl at least once. Aniela and Jerzy were more than happy to comply, saying that it would be good for me to experience their program both in body and mind. Although I’m “youthful” in the sense that I am See AT THE GYM, page 22 BACK TO THE BASICS The Happy Body program takes you out of the gym and into your own home. The Gregoreks don’t view the gym as a productive space. The “gym” in their garden is essentially a small room replete with windows. Only trees surround you, rather than other people and whirling machinery. The program involves a total of 18 exercises. Each exercise has five differSee HAPPY BODY, page 22 December 9, 2009 N The Almanac N21

The Almanaac 12.09.09 - Sectioin 2

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