Sheila Melody Personal Trainer

Sheila Melody has been exercising regularly since the age of 13 when she first signed up for cheerleading in the 8th grade. She has grown and evolved through the world of American fitness, as she describes it, “since before they were requiring you to wear shoes in the group classes – (seriously!)” Certified as a Power of 10 personal trainer in 2010, she has instructed hundreds of clients through the years. With experience and background in a broad diversity of other exercise programs, her unique specialty is designing a workout that matches whatever specific needs a client may have and helping them achieve their fitness goals.


Sheila’s first job in fitness training was as an instructor for a women’s fitness club called Lynn Stevens in Aurora, Illinois where she grew up. “It was kind of like the Curves of the 70′s. We had an equipment circuit and did hourly aerobics classes – sans shoes!” She later became an instructor at Chicago Health and Racquet Club; “I used to teach classes in the middle of the exercise room and again, we’d all take off our shoes to do the class! At that time there were also separate exercise rooms for men and women.”


Entering the adult world and workplace, exercise and fitness remained important to Sheila, but as is the case with most working adults, finding the time and the ideal exercise program became an ever-growing challenge. Workout practices and fitness brands that fill her personal history include:

  • The Jane Fonda Workout in the 80’s
  • Cher (believe it or not she had some VHS tapes!)
  • Bikram Yoga
  • Bryan Kest Power Yoga
  • The Firm DVD series
  • Billy Blanks Tae Bo
  • Aerobics Classes and Step Classes with Bally Total Fitness
  • And a Bowflex TreadClimber used at home intermittently for about 5 years

“Jane Fonda, (also barefoot in her first video!), got everyone working out in their living rooms and it was awesome! Cher just followed suit with different kinds of music. The Firm was the same, just a ’90′s style take on it. Without these home fitness videos I wouldn’t have been able to workout at all as a single working mom with a lot of responsibilities and very little time. The drawback of working out at home, however, is you run the risk of injuring yourself. Probably most important, when you workout alone at home it’s very likely you won’t push yourself as hard as you do with a personal trainer. Without that extra push and the right guidance, you likely won’t see results or reap the health and fitness benefits.”


Continuing through her exercise history Sheila recounts that “Billy Blanks Tae Bo was a huge fad and it was a really intense workout. There was a lot of energy in the group classes, but you could also get hurt easily or push yourself too hard. This was the only time that I actually felt sick in a group workout class.” In other experiences “Bikram Yoga and Bryan Kest Power Yoga were great for that type of a exercise. But the classes are long – at least an hour to an hour and a half – so there is a lot of time involved. That makes it difficult to keep up long term. Yoga, also, is really not meant to be a workout – but a ‘practice.’” On the other hand, Sheila says, ” I actually like to call Power of 10 the ‘Yoga of Strength Training‘ because my yoga practice has actually helped me with this workout — using the focus, the breathing techniques, and maintaining correct form while experiencing the deep intensity.”

Sheila worked out regularly at LA Fitness and liked it at the time because child care facilities were available. “But I just did my typical workout that never really progressed.” It was the same story at Ballys, Nautilus Plus and a corporate gym when she was an employee at Technicolor. “These gyms provide an opportunity for better health in the beginning and maintenance after. But they are also crowded, don’t have the superior equipment, and offer very little instruction – even if you pay for a Personal Trainer.” Sheila’s ongoing exercise practices have also included such things as hiking and walking which she says are ”good stress relievers and have other benefits, but don’t build muscle.”


“I was first referred to slow motion strength training in 2005 by a friend who had known about it for about 15 years prior.” Sheila started doing the once-a-week slow motion, high intensity weight lifting workout and was sold on it almost immediately. “This has been the only workout that I have ever done that I have been able to make progress, see results, build muscle and keep progressing year after year. For the time spent, it’s the most efficient exercise program available – leaving time for all the other things you want to do in your life – or need to! It’s based on the principle that muscle only grows during rest, after a single, focused session of pushing your muscles to maximum capacity. Not to mention, the slow motion lifting and other factors (like the specially designed, custom calibrated gym machines we now have in our studio) provide little or no risk of injury – reducing the impact on joints and ligaments to next to nothing, focusing the stress squarely on your muscles, and working seamlessly with your body’s natural movements.”

Over the next couple of years Sheila continued slow motion strength training and was eventually referred to a group of people who wanted to start a fitness club called Slow Motion in 2007. “I worked for Slow Motion for about a year and became more knowledgeable about the business and equipment. We used very high end gym equipment from Germany called David.  I actually traveled to Germany and completed the David Academy training course to learn the exercise protocols used with their line of equipment.” A couple years later, Sheila decided it was time to get certified. In 2012 the opportunity arose to open InForm Fitness Toluca Lake and the rest is history.


As Sheila says after a lifetime of fitness practice, “Don’t live your life in the gym – workout with us, once a week, for 20 wonderful, intense minutes, and then go LIVE your LIFE!” As an experienced business woman, business owner and as a personal trainer – and also, just because she’s Sheila! – Sheila Melody also knows how to roll out the red carpet for her clients and will do so for you.