New Steele Fitness opens in Excelsior

Excelsior’s new Steele Fitness convinces one couple that they can work out together.
Writer Liz McKeone Peterson and her husband, Ryan Peterson, get a personalized workout with Steele Excelsior trainers.

Last November, Steele Fitness opened its fifth location in the Mason Motors building in downtown Excelsior. Steele offers convenient and customized workouts at a competitive price, and the company uses a three-pronged approach of in-home personal training, studio personal training and small-group fitness classes to make sure each client receives the optimal fitness experience.

To celebrate the Excelsior studio’s opening, writer Liz McKeone Peterson and husband Ryan worked out with Steele Excelsior trainers. Although they came in with different fitness backgrounds, expectations and even attitudes, they both found that Steele Fitness was a perfect fit for each of them.

He says:

You wouldn’t guess it by looking at me, but my body takes a lot of time and effort to maintain. Making sure I have three-plus meals a day and working out nearly once a week is no easy task. So when I got the opportunity to take some personal training sessions at the new Steele Fitness location in Excelsior, my first reaction was, “Well, that’s not really for someone like me”; but I decided to give it a try anyway. Not only did I prove myself wrong, I learned that personal training—particularly at Steele—can be for anyone, no matter his or her lifestyle.

Upon entering the facility, I was immediately greeted by name by one of the trainers and directed toward the locker room (which was immaculate and deserves an article unto itself.) After changing clothes, I hopped on an elliptical machine to begin my workout. While I warmed up, my trainer, Joeleen Kielkucki, who is also the manager of Steele’s Excelsior location, read through my health questionnaire and asked any relevant questions not already covered by the form. I was relieved that the pace set for me was one where I could comfortably engage in conversation.

She also explained to me that the first session was designed solely for the purpose of assessing my capacity for physical activity and gauging my precise needs. Though that first session was designed for her to learn about me, I learned quite a bit from her, too. For instance, I learned how to do a lunge—and I learned not to feel badly that I had no clue how to do one before meeting her. But more importantly, I learned that if I gave Kielkucki and the other personal trainers at Steele a chance, I could maintain a different kind of body, and that health and fitness really could be for a person like me.

She says:

While Ryan may not be a gym rat, I am. I played sports throughout high school and since then, I’ve made it a priority to spend some time in the gym each week. Since I moved to the area six years ago, I’ve been a member—at one time or another—at a handful of different gyms and fitness centers, so I know a good instructor or trainer when I see one. In other words, I had high expectations going into my first session at Steele Fitness, and those expectations were more than met.

I was really impressed with the trainers’ professionalism. Not only were they knowledgeable about the different circuits and training strategies, they were attentive to how each movement affected my joints, muscles and bones. Any time I started to move in way that might strain my body, my trainers stopped and adjusted my positioning. They were also friendly, respectful and encouraging. Steele trainers are good coaches; they were constantly searching for ways to motivate and challenge me. 

After my three sessions, I felt like my time and energy had been valued. I had great workouts, but I also felt uplifted and encouraged. And as any gym rat knows, if the workout isn’t mentally beneficial, then it’s not going to be sustainable. Kielkucki says the trainers are “practitioners of health”—and I benefited from their holistic approach to workouts.