Mom and daughter work together at Muscatine’s Curves
MUSCATINE, Iowa — Some locally owned businesses are known as “mom-and-pop operations.”
Muscatine’s Curves is a mom-and-daughter operation.
Ann Shaffer and her daughter, Cindy Hernandez, have been working together since Hernandez became the owner on Jan. 2, of the Curves weight loss center in Muscatine.
And what’s it been like working together? Shaffer summed it up quite succinctly.
“It’s awesome,” she said Monday afternoon as she and Hernandez helped clients with the exercise equipment. “We get along well.”
Hernandez, 44, the youngest of Shaffer’s five children, knew her mom would be a natural on the fitness floor.
For the past 28 years, Shaffer, 72, has run the Quad City Times Bix 7, and she plans to make this summer’s race her 29th.
Hernandez has joined her mom on the 7-mile run three times, and credits Shaffer for inspiring her to pursue a fit lifestyle.
Women of all ages come to Curves, said Hernandez, and her mother is an inspiration to them all, including those 50 and over — the oldest client is 87 — who say fitness improves their quality of life.
Ruth Sturms of Muscatine has come to Curves three days a week for 14 years to keep her muscles toned, especially in the winter.
“That way, I can work out in the yard in the spring and summer and not get sore,” said Sturms, 78. “It even helps with doing housework. It keeps me going.”
Hernandez, a former restaurant manager, said empowering women to reach their fitness and health goals is rewarding.
“I’ve struggled all my life with weight, and got into exercise over the past four to five years,” said Hernandez, the wife of Jamie Hernandez and mother of daughters, Emily Kirk, 22, and Molly Kirk, 17. “But that was all by myself in my basement.”
Ellen Boersen of Muscatine, who began coming to Curves a year ago, looks forward to working out with the other clients.
“I wasn’t a big exerciser at home,” said Boersen, 65. “But you come here, you do it and your done.”
Since taking over the business, Hernandez became certified in the Curves Complete program, which provides clients with a tailored diet, exercise plan and coaching.
“I’m on the program myself,” said Hernandez. “That way, I walk the talk.”
Hernandez helps people who take the program as they learn more about reading nutrition labels and making good food choices. The program includes access to an online component where they can create a customized diet and print up a grocery shopping list.
People in the Complete program also receive a pedometer and are encouraged to walk 10,000 steps a day.
Hernandez and Shaffer said they look forward to coming to work, cheering on clients and keeping fit themselves.
“I do the exercise circuit daily,” said Shaffer. “It’s great for building upper body strength. I didn’t have that before and I can tell you, it definitely makes a difference.”
What: Curves women’s fitness center
Where: 1510 Isett Ave.
Hours: 5:30-10 a.m. and noon-6:30 p.m., Monday-Thursday; 5:30-10 a.m. and noon-4 p.m. Friday; 8-10 a.m. Saturday. Closed Sundays.