Healthy changes afoot at Fitness 120 in McHenry

With new group fitness classes about to start, a building foundation of transformative stories to tell and a focus on the community's welfare beyond those who come through the doors, Fitness 120 in McHenry is heading into its second year strong.

"I'm down to about 200 pounds from 265," said Graham White, 25, of Woodstock, one of 10 employees at the now 1-year-old Fitness 120, located in the former Charter Fitness space at 2192 Route 120, McHenry. "I owe it to this place. It has the most inviting, supportive atmosphere … and if I can do it, anyone can. You just have to wake up, change the mindset and get moving."

Once feeling sluggish and unhappy with his self-image, White is now on track for personal trainer certification and, like everyone on staff, loves the opportunity to help others pursue healthier paths.

Before White ever stepped through the doors, Fitness 120 itself underwent a dramatic transformation. Its new owners invested $500,000 in remodeling the 8,000-square-foot space and equipping it with everything from Hammer Strength free weights to dozens of Life Fitness machines, including a $10,000 3D scanner that measures body fat percentage, basal metabolic rate and body mass index.

"It performs a 3D scan of the body providing measurements, weight displacement on your feet, and it calculates a posture report looking at the hips, shoulders and neck," said Brian Irmiter, general manager. "Using the scanner is free to members. We recommend people use it once a month to track progress."

Fitness 120 features far more than state-of-the-art equipment. Its highly knowledgeable, friendly and devoted staff is always on the lookout for ways to improve the membership experience - evidenced in the facility's growth from a handful of clients upon opening in August 2018 to roughly 400 today.

A new set of group fitness classes begins Sept. 30. Offerings include total body workout, vibe and flow yoga, cycle and abs, and more. The schedule is available at

"We're genuinely interested in helping people to meet their fitness goals and feel better," said Jenny DeRosa, director of marketing. "We offer certified personal trainers. We also have a clinical exercise physiologist on staff, and two with related master's degrees plus another working on a master's."

Everyone from the novice to the strong man competitor will find appropriate regimens and equipment at Fitness 120, added DeRosa, along with Irmiter, who is himself a strongman competitor, and Fitness Manager Ryan Mamerow.

Currently, the management team is focused on its course offerings as well as community involvement. Mamerow has started a high-intensity interval training (HIIT) class at 7 a.m. Wednesdays that is free and open to non-members. A kids' fitness program offers a free prize upon completion, plus parents receive a free one-week pass. And with local school event sponsorships and partnerships with like-minded businesses such as the Bike Haven and Core Chiropractic, the gym is immersed in the community's well-being, DeRosa said.

"In October we are sponsoring the Care4 Breast Cancer Run/Walk in Woodstock," she said. "We want to give back in meaningful ways that highlight our interest in the community's health."

Membership fees range from $29.95 to $39.95 a month plus a one-time sign-up fee. Discounted corporate memberships also are available. For other information, visit, send inquiries to or call (815) 679-6520.

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