By ALESHA CADET
Tribune Features Reporter
THE MEMBERS and trainers at the MACFit360 Personal Training Studio are not only interested in improving the Bahamas in terms of health and fitness, they are also quite involved in charitable efforts as well.
On August 23, beginning at 5 pm, MACFit360 will play host to a give-back fundraiser; donating proceeds to the Ranfurly Home For Children.
“At such a young age you have that chance to make healthy life decisions. This is not going to be just a one time thing we are going to do with the Ranfurly Home. We are going to have them come to our studio, work-out and get involved. This is going to be our charity definitely,” said Michaela Mackey, vice-president of operations at MACFit360.
Jimmy Mackey, MACFit360 owner, said the studio will be impacting the kids and staff at the Ranfurly Home by educating them on the benefits of health and fitness, and also by donating school supplies. Mr Mackey has been a basketball player and athlete almost all his entire life; he captained the basketball squad at Langston University, Oklahoma and later went on to play in Europe.
“I was inspired to give back to the Ranfurly Home because as a teenager I played basketball there on the weekends and gained more skills from some of the other kids that lived at the Ranfurly Home. Even though that was something small, it made a big impact on my life and it helped me obtain a basketball scholarship to Tabernacle Baptist Christian Academy High school in Freeport, Grand Bahama. This led me to another scholarship to college and a professional career in basketball. Therefore, my seed of basketball skills started at playing basketball at the Ranfurly Home on Saturdays,” said Mr Mackey.
Building their business from the ground up, Ms Mackey said they officially opened the facility in the Independence Business Park Plaza #4 in January of this year located.
Since moving from California to Nassau, they have worked on making the MACFit360 concept a mobile one.
“We would have our workouts at the park, at the beach, and we also did home calls. Jimmy’s a master trainer and he has over 45 certifications. He does most of the training and I handle the business part of it, that is how we balance it all,” said Ms Mackey.
She said MACFit360 offers personal as well as large and small group training. They offer TRX suspension training course classes with full body high intensity work-outs, corporate fitness training and more.
“All of our trainers are internationally certified; that’s a requirement that we have for our trainers. We have four trainers, including Jimmy – one female and three males,” she said.
The fundraiser for the Ranfurly Home is not their first event of this nature.
“In February, we had partnered with the Bahamas Breast Cancer Initiative and we did a fundraiser for them, giving them full proceeds for their research. We also get to train clients that are living with the disease cancer,” said Ms Mackey.
The Mackeys have always been into fitness as well as helping people to live better lives.
“His dream was to one day open up a facility. First we weren’t thinking of a private facility, but living in California gave us that opportunity to see what is on the rise there. The private personal training studios there was the in thing and it was what everybody wanted. Nobody wants to go to a gym anymore with 30 to 40 people anymore to workout. They are doing the wrong workouts and they don’t see the results they should be seeing,” Ms Mackey said.
“With a personal trainer giving you a programme and a design that is going to help you to get to your goal and the right workout that you need to be doing and the food you need to be eating, that helps people so much more.”
Ms Mackey said it makes her happy to know that there is now more awareness in regards to health and fitness in the Bahamas. She said it is a lifestyle that should be taken seriously.
“Like we tell all our clients that come in, it is not something that you can do today and tomorrow and feel like you should quit two months later after accomplishing your goal. This is not a trend, you have to continuously keep it up,” said Ms Mackey.
For Mr Mackey, he would like to see Bahamians choose better and healthier food options. This will help reduce the risk of chronic illnesses, for example high blood pressure and certain cancers, he said. He said he would also like to see Bahamian people become more physically active, as this will help prevent obesity and counteract stress.
If he were to offer three specific health and fitness tips to children at the Ranfurly Home, Mr Mackey said they would include: “The importance of water consumption, because they are very active at this age and it will help prevent dehydration. Another would be the importance of healthy eating; more fruits and vegetables because they are packed with vitamins and minerals that the body needs to function at optimal level.” Finally, he would like for them to participate in some form of physical activity or sports, as this would also help to keep them physically and mentally strong.
He said they may be able to gain skills in a sport that can take them to the next level as it did with him.
“The sky is not the limit, there is something beyond that”, said Mr Mackey.