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2845 Thornhills Avenue Southeast
Grand Rapids, MI, 49546

616-301-5366

Do you want to burn fat & lose weight? Build muscle & get stronger? Crosstrain for running, biking or swimming? Or hike to Machu Picchu? Everything starts with a detailed assessment of your current physical condition. Our system measures your lean muscle mass, body fat, strength levels and other biomarkers. 

Based on the latest exercise science, Koko's proprietary algorithms create a unique strength, cardio & nutrition program precisely tailored to your body and goals.

Our Smartraining equipment leads you through every single workout, pushing you harder with real-time instruction, interactive coaching and performance data.

Koko synchronizes to your body, dynamically modifying the volume and intensity of your workouts as you progress, for maximum results without plateaus.

Every workout is different, never boring. Koko's friendly staff & encouraging community celebrate your milestones, both in-club and online.

Every session is tracked automatically on your own personal, data-rich website. Check in anytime from any of your devices.

 

Koko FitClub of Grand Rapids, Michigan

Koko FitClub of Grand Rapids, Michigan. Official Blog.

Marjie VanPutten: A True Koko Success Story

Randall Wysong

Throw AWAY THE SCALE!


Marjie has traveled a unique road to success. The road that led her to Koko's front door is not unlike many people struggling with weight issues, however it's the path she took once she entered. The fact that she made it to Koko was the first step, and what she did after is nothing short of amazing.

Marjie has been struggling for a long time with her weight. Diets, walking, and the eventual feeling of defeat took over Marjie's life, until her son told her about Koko FitClub. Marjie realized "there's nothing left to do", so she decided to give it a try. Since July of 2015 she has lost 48lbs, many inches, and is feeling better than she ever had.

Combined with her workouts, she's using the Koko Fuel Plan, a plan that suggests and formulates a healthy eating schedule. The Fuel plan tells you how much to eat, when to eat, and pairs up quality food to keep things tasty. The plan is based on Marjie's calorie output and exercise, and gives her the proper calorie intake that she'll need. She can log in to her Koko account, check out her 2-week menu, grocery list, and recipes. A one-stop-shop to healthy living! The Koko Fuel Plan offers every day meals and snacks, and they all produce the same nutritional value and calorie intake. So, if Marjie does not like what's on the menu for a certain day of the week, she can steal from a different day and keep pace.

For many years Marjie ate her veggies. She ate fruits. She did Weight Watchers. Nothing changed. Koko Fuel taught her what a proper proportion is and how to control those proportions. The snacks had to hit the road too. Many of us feel as though we need to fuel our body when we are tired, however snacks are not the proper fuel. They are the direct opposite, and she now knows what snacks to eat, and when to eat them.

Now that Marjie is on the proper path she said she feels great, and has more energy and confidence. More energy - what exactly does that mean? For Marjie a lot of it has to do with the dropped weight. Imagine carrying around 48 extra pounds everywhere you go... it has to be exhausting. Without the extra weight Marjie can move more freely and her muscles are energized with oxygen. After Marjie lost her 48lbs, Justin, a Koko FitCoach, handed her two 20lb medicine balls and told her to walk around with them. She couldn't believe that she had lost more weight than those two medicine balls. All that weight on her joints made it so hard for her to move around. What a relief!

How many of us have dreamt of entering a 5k? It never fails... something keeps us from entering. Next year, right? Marjie had that dream. She still does. However, now it's within reach and fast approaching. It's a great idea to set a goal at some point during your big change, and she did that after 2015 ended. She said, "you know what? I'm going to get out of my comfort zone and sign up for that run." And she did. She went on to say that some days it feels overwhelming, especially when she drove the route, but her husband, and Koko Nation are confident that she'll do great! Marjie's husband, who does all the cooking and uses her Koko Fuel program, has also lost over 30lbs, and is her biggest source of support. It's wonderful to have people in your life who push you. 

After Marjie first came to Koko, and learned just how the Smartrainer works, she was hooked. She has been to the YMCA and other local clubs, but has never experienced anything like Koko. Marjie says that "it's tailored for you. It keeps track of where you're at", which she did not expect, but that's exactly what you can expect when working with Koko. She anticipates staying at Koko long after her big race, and really sees no reason to ever leave. This is especially due to the FitCoaches that help her every time she walks in. Marjie goes on to say that "I don't think I'd be where I'm at now without their guidance." She remembers breaking down, in tears, and having Ben reassure her that she's on the right path, doing the right things. Ben told Marjie to "throw the scale away!" She didn't throw it away, but had her husband hide it. She simply gauged her progress on how she felt, and she felt great.

So lets get down to the nitty-gritty in terms of numbers and stats. Sean, Master FitCoach at Koko, tells us that Marjie has lost 19% body fat in roughly 6 months. He attributes this lose to the combination of resistance training, ie; lifting weights, and lifting in the correct manner. Over time, when done properly, resistance training is a great way to achieve results. Sean says "it's not just the act of exercising, but exercising appropriately for you." 

When you combine the resistance training with a high intensity, low impact cardio, you have a great map for success. Keeping her cardio routine low impact routine lessens Marjies chances for injury which could derail her progress. How do you keep your workout low impact? Sean says to keep away from the jumping, running, and the excessive group exercise, which can lead to damaged cartilage. That is how you end up with knee and joint pain, shin splints, and plantar fasciitis. It's tough for an overweight body to handle the extra weight, so you end up causing more harm than good. Koko helps to keep clear of injuries such as these with their custom ergonomic workout, designed specifically for burning the most calories per minute without impact on the joints.

When discussing Marjie's progress, Sean mentions her overall health track. Her strength gain is approaching 30%, which means that she's retaining lean muscle while stripping body fat. This is crucial to body composition. Another area of improvement is Marjie's posture. Many people who carry extra weight have poor posture, which restricts air supply, damaging the thyroid, pituitary gland, hip flexers, spinal erectors, and so on. Everything Marjie is doing now will remedy any past or future problems. 

Marjie shared a personal story about her brother, who has always lived a very fit life. She says that she never understood the high that he got out from exercising and living his life. He has always been so light on his feet, and Marjie never understood why until she started coming to Koko. Her brother now calls Marjie the Gym-Rat! Looking back only one year, Marjie's brother cannot believe what he is witnessing. She's a completely changed person, and knows she will continue to come to Koko long after this summer's race, a race that Marjie is only weeks away from running. She's not done, and says that she "honestly does not know how she would feel if Koko was not in my life. This is my life, I make it a priority, and without making it a priority I would not be where I'm at. There's a lot of times that I wish I could come more often, but my husband would never see me!"

Proud is an understatement. Marjie is an inspiration to everyone here at Koko, both members and staff. She makes us work harder, there's no doubt about that. Good luck in your race Marjie... we'll be here every step of the way.

Story and photographs by Scott Meivogel

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2845 Thornhills Avenue Southeast
Grand Rapids
Michigan
49546
United States