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Jodi Naasz

Gym: Charm City Fitness, 3039 Eastern Ave.; 410-327-8783; Rate: $35-$50 (30 minutes) Style: Intimate and encouraging, but strict Workout philosophy: "You have to practice what you preach. That's probably the most important thing." Favorite move: The split squat, a lunge-type move done while holding weights Indulgence: M&Ms Jodi Naasz works with all sorts of people -- folks who want to lose weight or run a marathon or recover from an injury. But the ones she thinks she has a way with are the haters, the ones that want nothing to do with a gym. Naasz prides herself on her ability to make a hater like it -- at least a little. Maybe she's a Workout Whisperer. "I love the people who say, 'I hate it, but I have to do it.'" she says. "I can make them enjoy anything. They might not like the entire experience. But they might like the people here. Something." Part of that could be the intimacy of the space. The gym, which Naasz owns, is compact and cozy. The place feels a lot like someone's living room -- filled with weights instead of furniture. Near Patterson Park, the gym was a drugstore before Naasz and her husband bought it. The couple lives upstairs. (A funny fact: She works out at another gym because she says if she didn't, she'd never leave her house.) Naasz, who's 31, has been training people for seven years, after starting her career teaching phys ed at McLean High School in Virginia. In 2009, she earned a spot on the U.S. women's street hockey team. One of Naasz's longest-standing clients is Alice Gosse, who started coming to the gym when it opened five years ago. Gosse, a middle-age mother of two, works out so that she can eat what she wants without packing on the pounds -- as she's prone to do. After losing about 40 pounds, and changing from a sedentary person to one who runs triathlons, Gosse persuaded her husband to work out with Naasz, too. "If it weren't for working out with Jodi," Gosse says, "I wouldn't have been able to run my first 5K. She actually taught me how to run."
Lloyd Fox, Baltimore Sun
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