Healthy Healing

A new year brings new resolutions, with health and fitness at the top of most people’s list. Increasing your workout routine and making more visits to the gym is always a good idea, but sometimes you might need something more. Someone who listens and understands your current struggles or goals. A small group who gives encouragement at just the right time. Or a place where you can reflect quietly for a few minutes during your busy day. Figure by Faith can be all that—a warm, welcoming fitness studio where you can work out, find a like-minded community, and add a spiritual component to your health journey.

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With more than 30 years in the personal fitness industry, Omaha native and Figure by Faith Owner Deb Gray discovered that one common thread needed to improve one’s outer self is to heal the inner self. Gray had spent most of her career as a personal trainer traveling to gym’s and client’s homes. Three years ago, a client suggested she open her own facility. “I decided if I was going to do that, I wanted to incorporate faith into the training, so I became certified as a Spiritual Director to help my clients with key elements of mindfulness with the body, mind, and spirit,” she said.

Believing that everything happens for a reason, Gray said the process for opening Figure by Faith fell into place, from finding the space, to hiring Miranda Geist as an independent personal trainer, to having the opportunity to expand the gym to twice its original size just a year after opening. She attributes her good luck not only to her faith, but to all the connections she’s made throughout her extensive career, which has included playing volleyball for the University of Nebraska Omaha, winning Mrs. Nebraska in 2001, and several years in corporate wellness for companies such as Union Pacific.

When opening Figure by Faith, as a busy wife and mother, she knew she wanted to be able to work smarter, not harder, so she brought in Geist whom she knew from her previous days in corporate wellness. “We hadn’t seen each other in years and ran into each other at Target,” Geist said. “I was looking for a new location to train my clients, so this was meant to be.” She’s been impressed with the transformation she’s witnessed in clients and has been able to implement a lot of Gray’s philosophy into her training for both her clients and personally.

Lisa Jones is a Figure by Faith member who has been training with Gray for the past year. After trying a holy yoga class in Colorado, Jones searched online for “fitness and faith” and found the new gym. She drove to the facility, walked in, and immediately felt at home. “I was a single mom, in transition with my job, and was looking for a certain level of knowledge, support, and dedication, and Deb provides me with that,” Jones said.

That’s a key distinction at Figure by Faith—it’s a place that can be whatever one needs it to be at that time. If you simply want a welcoming place to work out, either alone or in a small group, it can serve as that. If you want a community to encourage you, that is available as well. Or if you want a more spiritual concept, Gray is willing to listen, lead you in prayer at the end of a workout, or even send you a daily devotion. Encouraging phrases and scriptures are prevalent throughout Figure by Faith, including a prayer wall. “We have all kinds of clients, and not all of them incorporate the faith element,” she said. “We are here for whatever people might need.”

The way Figure by Faith structures memberships is individual as well. Thirty and sixty-minute personal training sessions are available, as well as small group classes, including faith-based yoga. You can also purchase a membership just for the gym’s state-of-the-art Free Flex stretching machine, which is a computerized program in which you control the tension for stretching upper body, lower body, and your back. The gym also features a new Helix low-impact cardio machine, and every consultation includes a complimentary InBody analysis that measures water weight, lean muscle mass, body and visceral fat percentages, among other diagnostic tools. Nutrition is another component that Figure by Faith helps guide clients.

And don’t let the fresh scent and homey décor mislead you—Figure by Faith welcomes men just as much as women. In fact, Gray said men and women meet their friends, and many couples come in and workout together, and having that support partner is a big key to the success of any health and fitness journey. She welcomes anyone of any age, including kids, to come in and visit and sums up what Figure by Faith is all about with the phrase: “clear your mind, transform your body, nourish your spirit.”

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