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Strong Mamas: Making fitness fun while making new friends

The Strong Mamas fitness group brings together 40 members for socializing and for kid-friendly workouts in Greenville and Simpsonville.

In addition to exercise, the group meets for social functions, such as moms’ night out and craft events for kids.

“We offer many different opportunities for our members to get together and create friendships outside of our fitness classes,” said Jessica Thomas, owner and lead instructor. “It can be a night out centered around dinner and a movie, wine and painting, or yoga and beer. Or we do afternoon meet-ups after class that center around a play date for the kiddos. … I leave it open to the moms to decide what they are in the mood for.”

The group also has a monthly “Salad in a Jar Party” where members bring five empty jars. Each person is assigned an ingredient to prepare.

“It is such a fun time and everyone leaves with five pre-made salads for the week,” Thomas said.

Children’s events have occurred at places like Sky Top Orchard in Flat Rock, North Carolina, and Acrosmith Gymnastics in Greenville.

Moms are able to participate if they are at least eight weeks post-partum, and instructors help entertain babies so moms can exercise.

Scheduled on, gatherings happen at Heritage Park in Simpsonville and Cleveland, Legacy and Gower parks in Greenville. In bad weather, indoor locations are used, such as the Bon Secours Wellness Arena, Haywood Mall or Park Avenue Gym, in downtown Greenville.

A $75 sign-up fee is required to join. Then, members can choose to pay $15 per class or $75 per month. Other packages are available, depending on the person’s schedule.

“Strong Mamas provides a positive, energetic, encouraging and kid-friendly atmosphere that allows moms to stay healthy and active with their kiddos right alongside of them,” Thomas said. “We aren't just a workout group. We are a support system for those who need a little accountability and an extra push on their fitness journey, as well as a strong community of women who just enjoy each other’s company. Motherhood is a selfless job, and some can get lonely. Strong Mamas is here to make you feel welcome and good about yourself.”