Fitness fun is not just for the fit

REFIT offers uplifting exercise experience

By Mary Helen Darah

The motto of REFIT® Revolution, a national cardio dance program, is “Fitness isn’t just for the fit; it’s for the willing.” Boomer, Dolli Darah, is now a REFIT® instructor and is excited to offer classes called REFIT® Greater Toledo, where participants of all shapes and ability levels can work out in a safe environment. “I started out teaching ZUMBA®,” she recalled. “But I was longing for an environment that was more than just an exercise class. The ‘community’ aspect of REFIT® is what caught my attention. I knew it would be the perfect ‘fit’ for me. There are no prerequisites for participants. Everyone can just be themselves.” Fellow Boomer and REFIT® instructor, Lori Brandt, couldn’t agree more. “I teach exercise to cancer survivors at the ‘Victory Center’,” stated Brandt. “I went online to search for ideas for my class and I discovered REFIT®. Not everyone is a size 2 or a gymnast. I love that REFIT® celebrates diversity and age difference. It is a safe community to form relationships and love people as they are. We are all together moving on God’s great dance floor.”

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Lori Brandt and Dolli Darah, certified REFIT instructors, are part of a national dance program called the ‘REFIT Revolution,’ that provides a safe environment and fitness fun for people of all shapes and sizes.

Core values
Instructors promote the core values of the REFIT® philosophy. These include acceptance, bridging, connection, impact and excellence. Participants are encouraged to love and accept the body they’re in. The community wants to build a “bridge” between different cultures, beliefs, abilities and generations to connect with others in class and out of class. All ages and stages are welcome as evidenced by a third instructor on the REFIT® Greater Toledo team, millennial Hollyce Brammer. The class also helps participants discover their positive “impact potential” in their own lives as well as in others and raise the excellence and standards of culture while still remaining relevant to it.

A group of REFIT participants are on their way to creating a powerful body, mind, soul and spirit.
A group of REFIT participants are on their way to
creating a powerful body, mind, soul and spirit.

Heart work
“It’s not about the ‘hard,’it’s about the ‘heart,’” explained Darah. “Our routines use positive movements and contemporary Christian music, which not only creates a powerful body, but mind, soul and spirit as well.” Participants are invited to take part in a 5-minute session called “heart work” at the end of class. “It is a time of fellowship, sharing and lifting people up in prayer. We like to explain to the group that this part of class is optional. REFIT® is faith infused NOT faith invaded,” stated Darah. “We love the gospel message and carry Christian values but we are a fitness program for all people. We allow an open floor for sharing. During this week’s heart work, a class member shared her joy of her daughter recently passing a difficult professional test. Another participant asked that we remember a family going through a rough time. I shared an inspirational quote from nationally known author and speaker Brené Brown, ‘You can’t start the next chapter of your life if you keep re-reading the last one.’

If you are ready to start a new chapter of fitness fun and be a part of an uplifting fitness experience, consider joining the REFIT® Revolution.

REFIT® Greater Toledo classes are held at the Church of the Cross, 1750 Eastgate Rd. in Toledo, on Tuesdays at 6:30 p.m. and Saturdays at 9 a.m. and at Epworth United Methodist Church, 4855 W. Central Ave. in Toledo, on Wednesdays at 6:30 p.m. Find them on Facebook at or email for additional information