Aspire To Fitness

Some people might call opening a fitness center whose parking lot is shared with the Y a ballsy move.

Tom Baker calls it complementary.

Aspire Fitness — Tom’s new business on the top floor of Banana Republic (the entrance is in the back, off Elm Street) — is a “holistic studio.”  He wants members to really know each other — and Tom promises that he and his staff will play an important role in members’ lives, helping them deal with stress, nutrition, even sleep routines.

The Y, he says, offers a different product.

“I’m a big supporter of the Y.  It’s a great place,” he says.

“Aspire is a holistic, very personal service.  Some people don’t want to be bothered — they just want to go somewhere, work out, and be done.”

Tom Baker

Tom is no new-age newcomer to town.  He spent part of his youth in Westport, and attended Staples for a while before his family moved to South America.

After college he worked in advertising, finance and real estate.  But  fitness and well-being were always passions.  Tom was frustrated by the constant changes he saw in the field.

“People get really confused about health and wellness,” he says.  “Every day there’s a different story about what to eat, or what not to eat.  And a lot of fitness center trainers just don’t look out for you.”

That’s what Aspire aspires to.  Tom plans 1-on-1 and group training, nutritional consultations — an approach tailored to each member’s needs.

He also wants Aspire to be community oriented.  He plans events with downtown businesses like Lululemon.  The Studio 44 dance center already occupies space next to Aspire; Tom hopes to partner with them in some way.

“I’m up for anything local,” Tom says.  “Yoga, spinning studios, cycling places — I’m trying to step away from the feeling that we’re competitors.  We can actually do unique events together, and introduce people to new places and things to do.  Anything to make Westport more healthy, aware and active.”

Tom researched locations for a long time, before setting on his quasi-hometown.  He thinks Westport is “on the verge of becoming a hip destination.”  New construction on Church Lane, and the new Nike store on Main Street — he’s smack in between both — along with what he calls the P&Z’s “initiative to make downtown more vibrant” excite him.

“That’s my approach too,” Tom says.

Not a bad thing to aspire to.

(Aspire Fitness plans a soft opening early next week.  A grand opening will take place after Labor Day.)

9 responses to “Aspire To Fitness

  1. The Dude Abides

    For most of us here in Westport, we are the verge of “hip replacement” rather than being a “hip destinaton.”

    • Going undercover

      Dude they refer to it as holistic…. But are affiliated or associated with Crossfit… Crossfit is far from holistic as a discipline of fitness… It’s quite extreme… So I wonder what kind of smoke they are trying to blow our way

  2. The Dude Abides

    Crossfit is one mean workout. Julie at Evolution is a champion. Not sure what the hell is holistic. Thought that was the first Sunday of each month at church??

  3. Going Undercover

    I give Julie props… I went to school with her and grew up with her….she is proof hard work can change your body….. but I am not a fan of the style of workout…..

  4. The Dude Abides

    Certainly not aerobic. I am at an age where I don’t want to change it but just keep it going. Baker sounds like he wants to be a guru for all segments of my life. I had one of those for 36 years. No mas. I run alone now.

  5. Thanks for the excellent write-up, Dan!

    Some funny comments as well. CrossFit is not “extreme”, but I will say there are many places out there that are irresponsible in their training methods and may come off that way. I’m quite the opposite.

    Fortunately, that is just one of my offerings in the broad field of strength and conditioning. I use functional movements, tailored to the individual, to produce results.

    I don’t want to be a guru for all stages of your life – I want to be able to help guide you to make choices for you to enjoy life at full capacity. For many, that means playing with the kids, running a 5K, or lifting some heavy stuff from a Home Depot trip. A holistic approach is deeply rooted in something I deeply believe in: You are what you eat, you are how much sleep you get, you are your lifestyle choices.

    Anyways, I will be hosting a free workout every Saturday at 10AM at my studio, or one of the local high school tracks. Come by and leave your beliefs at the door…and let’s have some fun 🙂

  6. Are you an advocate of the Paleo “Caveman” Diet???

  7. Hey JAM,

    Paleo is an excellent way for many people to reset their system, lose a significant amount of weight and shift their body’s use of main energy source from processed carbohydrate to the body’s fat sources by consuming quality, whole food focused on proteins and fats with quality carbs from vegetable sources.

    Of course, nutrition is entirely individualized although it is a great place to start. If you need some resources or want me to elaborate, shoot me an email and I’ll be happy to provide.

  8. Tom, Best of luck! I love your upbeat attitude & passion!
    Marie H.