FRIDAY FEATURE: Hangar 76 Inc and New Goals

Every once in a while you stumble across a person or a business, or in this case both, and the entire trajectory of your life is forever altered.

The gym is located just on the Northeast edge of Okotoks.

This year past year and a half, I have worked one on one with Brian Hardy, my personal trainer, who more importantly has become one of my most favourite friends. He has been my biggest supporter on my health and fitness journey since he happens to be the one guiding me every step of the way. Not only does he encourage me to do my best, but he doesn’t hesitate to call me out on my bs. That, of course, isn’t my favourite part, but it is necessary for growth.

Brian isn’t what I would have expected when I walked through the door to meet my new personal trainer. In fact he wasn’t anything like the stereotypes would have dictated. He had a quiet way about him, and I immediately liked him and felt I could trust him.

Teaching and coaching are truly Brian’s greatest strengths.

This was my last ditch effort to try to lose weight and be a better wife and mother. I needed a life overhaul. If you want to hear more about how that all came about, click HERE for my TEDx talk about my journey through the first 50 pounds of weight loss.

It hasn’t been a linear journey, but my current situation leaves me at a mere 8 months before I turn forty, and with my husband’s blessing (which I didn’t need, but I did want – because guess who has to live with me every day…), I am now undergoing another big push to reach my next series of fitness and weight loss goals in a quest to be #fitbyforty.

I approached Brian, who knows I have been floating through space feeling a bit like I can’t determine my master plan for what direction I want to go in, and I said, “ok, here it is. I finally have a goal.”

My one last push til I turn 40 will be to try to get down to 150 lbs so I can fight in a lower weight class for my Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu tournaments, as well as I would like to be able to wear one of those horrible swim suits where the lower half of your butt is exposed to the world. Mostly I think these swim suits are freaking hilarious, but also being able to do this at age 40 is magic. I’d never have done this at 20. Confidence and not giving a flying fack what anyone thinks is pure joy.

Brian has been helping me deal with some of my issues with my hip using a treatment he has been recently trained in called Gua Sha. Now, if you google this, it’s going to give you a bunch of mixed reviews. Some people swear by it, others think it’s pure crap. That’s life. It’s full of opinions, which as the saying goes, are like assholes, everyone has one and they all stink. I, however, will vouch for this treatment wholeheartedly. It landed me further into the splits, has eased some of my chronic hip pain and eased up some of the general tightness and discomfort I experience daily in my legs. After only 4 treatments I had increased ankle mobility which was perfect for my squats, and my knee could pretty much bend to a full 90 degree angle – which was a huge improvement from the maybe 20 degrees it could go before we started this.

Testing my knee mobility after only four treatments.

Aside from that, Brian monitors my food diary and encourages me to make all kinds of other healthy lifestyle changes. He has a holistic approach to health, meaning he sees that your ability to life weights isn’t just about lifting weights, it is interconnected with all other aspects of your life and health, which is obvious in his consistent investment in professional growth and development via books, seminars and ongoing training. This learning is often tailored to the needs of his current clients.

I think the biggest mistake we make when we look at hiring a personal trainer, is thinking they’re just someone who likes to lift weights. These folks tend to get labelled with various stereotypes and the reality is that some total yahoos ruin it for everyone.

Brian is someone you can work with, who not only has extensive knowledge to back up his experience, but he also has the relentless dedication needed to get even the most challenging cases to their goals. (Even me.)

Brian has been subjected to hours of my company. Social media content is my jam.

I’d urge you to book a consult with him. Find out if his programs are a fit for you, and INVEST IN YOUR HEALTH. I can’t stress this enough. We don’t hesitate to spend $5 a day on a latte, but if you took that $150 a month, added in the cost of a few more habits that don’t serve us and put it towards something that will help us feel better all around, you’d be thanking me profusely for the recommendation a year from now. I know that sounds overconfident, but I don’t make these claims lightly.

Even his online training has had incredible reviews, with one client stating, “What I most appreciate about Brian’s programming is how he customizes training to my specific goals, and has the knowledge to back it. Such a shift from typical cookie cutter fitness programs. He’s always checking in and offering new suggestions. His service is worth every penny and more.”

I can’t tell you enough, how difficult it was to write this blog. It took me over a week to determine what to say. I can’t honestly tell you enough about this gym. The semi-private training environment, the dedication to success of the client, the kindness and compassion of Brian and his employee Mitchell, and the high quality equipment and cleanliness of the gym. It’s way too much for one blog. Something that has been so impactful has been impossible to sum up in a few paragraphs.

Brian can be found on Instagram at on Facebook at @hangar76inc or via his website at