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Positive Life Changes Through Fitness

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“Make your health and fitness goals part of your life, not the ‘something extra’ you want to do. If you don’t make it a priority, your efforts won’t be sustainable.”

Those seeking a professional fitness haven where getting healthy with confidence, and without feelings of judgment, insecurity and shame, need look no further than Minneapolis’ flourishing personal training studio, Bodies by Burgoon. No mirrors, no agendas—just a focus on fitness.

Like many other successful athletes and business owners, Bodies by Burgoon’s CEO and founder Jason Burgoon’s determination to create a one-of-a-kind approach to fitness was born from lessons learned during a series of tragic events. As a youngster, fitness was a big part of Jason’s life; it was a passion that he and his father shared. But then the unimaginable happened. One lazy afternoon, 13-year-old Jason was biking to the local Blockbuster store to get a new game when he was broadsided by a van going 60 miles an hour. Witnesses to the accident reported Jason “clinging like a cat” to the underside of the speeding van as the driver dragged him over 300 feet down the city street.

“As you can imagine, I was badly hurt,” Jason remembered. “At first, I don’t think anyone thought I would live. Later, when I did pull through, doctors had serious doubts if I would ever walk again due to the horrific damage to my spine. I remember lying in the hospital bed hearing those words and not being able to get my teenage brain around the concept of never using my legs again.”

To make matters worse, during his long years of recovery he learned that his mentor and best friend was very ill as well. Cancer took his dad’s life when Jason was only 15 years old, almost three years after the accident that could have killed him. But despite the repeated setbacks in his life, Jason not only persevered; he became committed to helping others with their own fitness and health goals. As time passed, Jason’s accomplishments included working with, and changing the lives of, several hundred clients along with completing tenure as one of the top trainers in the country at Bally’s Total Fitness.

Using his passion and vast fitness knowledge, Jason officially started his own training business in January 2013. He mindfully surrounded himself with a team of like-minded and determined friends to help make his vision a reality and to share his unique approach to fitness with his fast-growing clientele. The approach is working. The company has seen active client base growth of more than 570 percent in less than two years. Bodies by Burgoon’s business model is simple: create a place filled with thoughtful trainers and teammates who value individuality, recognize unique needs, and help each other achieve goals and celebrate great results. It’s a place where people can challenge their fitness goals while experiencing an atmosphere of strength and compassion.

“There are many fitness places in the Minneapolis area, and that’s not a bad thing,” Jason commented. “It gives area residents many great places to get fit and healthy. But Bodies by Burgoon is unique in several ways. The workouts here may push people harder than they have ever been pushed, but our clients leave feeling empowered, not defeated. Respect is huge here and our environment has an authentic ‘family’ feel to it; we work very hard to preserve that. People may walk through our doors with certain fitness goals in mind, but after a couple of weeks they discover that what they gain on the inside is far more advantageous than what is manifested on the outside.”

All clients have access to basic nutritional resources including formulas for losing or gaining weight, nutritional guidance and tips from its team that includes three trainers, each with more than a decade of experience. Whether a client needs to recover from an accident or train for their next marathon, this flourishing facility endeavors to be highly personalized with its workouts, exercise plans and nutritional guidance.

“When I started out at this gym, I was a client,” Dawn Bryant, Bodies by Burgoon’s director of operations shared. “I was at the heaviest weight of my life, my back hurt, I was always tired and I would get winded climbing a flight of stairs. But once I became involved with the amazing people here, something clicked. Within nine months I had lost 130 pounds, not by starving or doing anything crazy. I lost it because I worked hard and watched what I ate. Until I found Bodies by Burgoon, I had never connected with fitness and I gained so much more than a healthy body. We emphasize ‘being strong’ here, but ‘strong’ can happen just as much in your head as in your body. Strong for me means more than physical strength; it’s a result of being both fit and being confident.”

As the New Year begins, Jason and Dawn offered sage advice for those looking to add ‘get fit’ to the list of New Year’s Resolutions. “Make your health and fitness goals part of your life, not the ‘something extra’ you want to do. If you don’t make it a priority, your efforts won’t be sustainable. Build these lifestyles changes into your daily routine so they become a permanent change.” HLM

Bodies by Burgoon is located at 1620 Central Avenue NE, Minneapolis. Visit the website,, or Facebook page,, to learn more