Director Spotlight: Brenda Boyd

Thursday, November 4, 2021
Posted by: Brenda Boyd

Hi, my name is Brenda Boyd, and I am the Evelyn Rubenstein Jewish Community Center Health and Wellness Director. I have been in the fitness industry for over 30 years. Some of you may know me from when I worked at the J from 2006-2015. I started off as a Pilates instructor/Trainer, then later became the Group Exercise Coordinator. I put together the women’s program, three transformation challenges, J-Fit and Go Girl Go. I left to work for a fitness boutique where I supervised twenty-one locations in Houston, fourteen in Tampa, and two in Naples Florida. I returned to the J full-time in my new role on June 1, 2021. If we have not met, please stop by my desk and introduce yourself, I would love to meet you. If you have not taken advantage of receiving your complimentary fitness assessment, please schedule one with me. On a personal note, I am a lightweight bodybuilder, I have two sweet, wonderful boys, I love working out and reading. My favorite cheat meal is a turkey burger, no cheese with the whole bun.  

Working and Learning with Brenda

Before I start with a new client, I always ask if they have fitness goals. Most of the time they say, “yes, I want to lose 10-15lbs and tone up." When I ask when the last time they were in their goal weight range, the answer is always 10-20 years ago. Its then my job to encourage my clients to think about what it would mean to lose 10-15lbs, when they have not been that weight for at least 10 years.

Most of the time they will change their answer to 3-5lbs.

It is not to say they cannot lose the 10-15lbs but if it has been ten years, the willpower to get into the gym everyday to work out for 45-60 minutes and restrict their caloric intake will be challenging.

It is my goal to help each client set realistic goals and timeline to meet goals. I encourage clients to set at least three small goals.

  • Goal 1: How much time are they going to put into it
  • Goal 2: A number they can achieve and maintain
  • Goal 3: A nutrition plan where they do not feel like they are depriving themselves

My next question is why? Most people hesitate but if I dig long enough the truth comes out. My doctor told me to, my 50-year high school reunion, my clothes do not fit, I was playing with my kids, fell and could not get up, I need to get off some medications, or I no longer like the way I look and feel about myself. I use the why to hold clients accountable. When they want to skip a workout or have multiple cheat days in a week, I have them revisit their goals and the why.

I then ask, on a scale from 1-10, how important is this goal to you? Ten being extremely important. If they tell me anything less than a nine, I let them know then it is not important. If it is important, it will be a ten or greater.

The next question I ask is if there are any injuries I should know about. If there are any, it's usually a knee, back, or shoulder injury. When I investigate these injuries further, it is usually the client was trying to do a 2-hour workout to work off the pizza, beer, and tacos they had for lunch. Or they took three classes in one day not realizing all three classes they were working their deltoids. When I work with my clients, I create the workouts ahead of time and keep a log of the muscle groups that have been worked so that there is no over training. I am also extremely strict on form, technique, and posture. I want my clients to know which muscle groups they are working to make sure they are feeling it in the right place.

My goal is to teach my clients the difference in cardiovascular, stability, strength, and power workouts. Next question is which one burns calories? I ask my clients if they know where their target heart rate should be? The purpose is to determine if their workouts are intense. I encourage clients to use a wearable. A Fitbit, Apple watch or MyZone heart rate monitor (the J sells them!), depending on its features, can measure calorie burn and heart rate, among other things. 

With a personal trainer, the client receives the trainers undivided attention. All workouts are created for the benefit of the client. If I have a client that wants to add muscle their workout, we adjust. The workout needs to fit the goal. It is often difficult for people unfamiliar with the muscle, to create the best workout for themselves, but with a personal trainer, they know they are getting what they need.   

To receive a complimentary FIT Assessment and one half-hour workout, contact Brenda Boyd at