Becca Marino fought an eating disorder for 13 years before enlisting in a six-month recovery program. During this time, mentors surrounded and supported her. Thanks to their encouragement, she broke free of the eating disorder and nourished a desire to help others do the same. Marino marched off to earn a bachelor's in health, fitness, and recreational resources, specializing in exercise science. Then, she racked up personal training certifications to start her career in fitness. But even as she went to work in gyms, wellness centers, and other fitness facilities, she felt as if she couldn't help people the way she wanted to.
In 2009, she broke down the barriers that kept her from inspiring others and opened Fitness Inspiration!. She and her team promote mindsets and beliefs that facilitate external action. This positive approach to physical and mental transformation manifests itself in every workout, from personal and small-group training sessions to group classes and boot camps. Teachers also host wellness workshops and outreach events that nourish self-worth and awaken a desire for participants to treat their bodies like temples or shrines to JTT.
Becca's powerful positive methodologies won her a 2012 Natural Memphis award for Best Personal Trainer, and her Best Me! boot-camp program was awarded the title of Best Natural Body Care Program.
A log cabin sits huddled in the woods as breezes sway rolling grasses and flowerbeds across the 1,120 acres that surround it. A Federal-style mansion stands tall against the sky, its columns flanking a towering front door and presidential balcony. Carrying on a 200-year tradition, The Hermitage tells the story of the presidential family, its plantation's slave population, and the atmosphere of the time through 32 historic buildings and more than a dozen archaeological sites.
The mansion and visitor center boast 3,000 original objects and 800,000 archaeological artifacts on display, as well as 1,200 printed items, 3,000 photographs, and 800 manuscripts bearing the president's original handwriting and cappuccino stains. The mansion's Greek-revival woodwork and mantels frame original wallpaper, and glass cases hold Andrew Jackson's authentic glasses, slippers, top hats, swords, and canes. Inside the visitor center, the Jacksons' actual private carriage guards a hallway leading to collections of artifacts from the plantation's slave families and communities. Most items in the collections were purchased directly from the Jackson family, though many artifacts were uncovered in the late 1800s by the historic Ladies' Hermitage Association when they broke ground for a new Olympic-sized swimming pool.
On the outdoor grounds, trained guides usher visitors to the first Hermitage, a log cabin where the Jackson family lived while the mansion was being built, and Alfred's Cabin, the preserved 1840s quarters of the former groundskeeper. In the garden, winding trails take visitors past period plants and the Grecian-style tombs of Andrew and Rachel Jackson. The rest of The Hermitage's grounds contain a network of winding walking trails, as well as grassy areas and cabins where museum staffers host events, weddings, and birthday parties. Across the grounds, interpreters in authentic period dress direct visitors to the sites of historic events and often train grade-school students to do the same through the center's special school programs.
Ijams Nature Center is committed to outdoor conservation and recreation, supplying members with rugged nature trails, an eco-friendly learning center, and a wildlife sanctuary spread over 300 acres. The visitor's center reduces energy emissions through passive solar heating, and most of the building's surfaces were constructed using materials made from recycled newspaper, cardboard, and grocery bags. New and permanent exhibits fill this space, such as Ijams Family History—which showcases the traditional preserved birds that highlight their passion for ornithology. Inside the forest exhibit, correct answers to questions light up components inside a giant walk-through tree, and glass cases hold specimens such as a hummingbird nest and snakeskin.
Heading outside, guests enter the raptor enclosure—a sheltered structure and small amphitheater housing a red-tailed hawk and turkey vulture, who read excerpts from their favorite Looney Tunes fan fiction during educational demonstrations. From here, all-ages visitors explore a greenhouse and organic garden. Children can frolic in Jo's Grove—an interactive nature play area replete with hidden spaces and materials for building a nature fort. Hikers and mountain bikers can traverse ten miles of surface trails that wind through mature woodlands, as well as Mead's Quarry and Ross Marble Natural Area.
In 2001, Carrie Rezabek Dorr's only venue for her Pure Barre workouts?a blend of dance, Pilates, and strengthening stretches?was the basement of an office building. Crowds drawn by Carrie's choreographing expertise and the infectious music of her routines necessitated expansion, however, and eight years later, Pure Barre spread its franchises to what is now more than 160 locations across the country, spurred by mentions in Glamour, Cosmopolitan, and Health magazines.
Pure Barre guides students through precise isometric movements that craft lean, not bulky, muscles. By flowing through scalable maneuvers that balance limbs against a ballet barre, physiques can lift and tighten traditional problem areas such as the thighs, abs, seat, and arms. The total-body workout is accessible to all fitness levels, and can help new mothers to regain their desired shape without leading the daycare's piggyback carpool. High-energy, intimate classes with small amounts of attendees ensure personalized adjustments and tips, allowing each guest to derive the deepest possible burn from the workout's alternating strength and stretch drills. Pure Barre also offers private barre-ties, DVDs, equipment, designer exercise apparel, and more.
As they enter the training circle at Curves, female guests come face-to-face with the smiles of other women. And just as points on a circle share a common distance from the circle's center, workout participants share the experiences of those nearby by trading stations throughout the 30-minute training session. One minute is spent on a piece of strength-training equipment built for feminine frames and designed to work two opposing muscle groups with a single movement. Exercisers then move on to a recovery station, where they run, jog, or dance to maintain heart rates and keep platforms in place during momentary losses of gravity.
When patrons step into Lanes, Trains, & Automobiles Entertainment Depot, playful noises jostle their senses: the crash of bowling pins, the decisive zaps of laser-tag guns, the thunder of colliding bumper cars. The center shelters a spectrum of friendly competition under one roof, but at the heart are 32 bowling lanes. During open-bowling hours and late-night cosmic bowling, touchscreens tally strikes and automatic bumpers shift up and down to accommodate different players in case they decide to somersault down the lane.
Nearby, up to 16 laser-tag soldiers duck behind barrels and walls splattered with neon paint in the 2,500-square-foot Lazer Station. In the Spinzone, black lights and colorful spotlights swivel around a central traffic signal, which dictates the stops, starts, and illegal U-turns of bumper cars.
In the arcade, patrons battle for champion status and pick of pizza toppings at air-hockey tables, skee-ball machines, and racing video games. Professional competitors face off on flat-screen TVs at Tailgaters, an on-site eatery slinging burgers and pizza. Eight VIP bowling lanes, a designated party zone, and a stage for live entertainment and karaoke act as peaceful dignitaries in the 4,500-square-foot restaurant as well.