May 2021: Betsy Kunz | Shred415 Northfield – Chicago, IL

May 12, 2021

Like so many other Shredders, my Shred story started with a question to myself – “Can I do this?”

It was 2013, and I was commuting home after another very long day at the law firm where I practiced. It was raining, literally and figuratively, that night. My life was full of stress, long hours, unhealthy habits, and wondering what was coming next. I loved exercise, but I never managed to find the time. I was desperate to feel better mentally and physically and found myself reading about the Shredder of the Month after seeing a friend had “Liked” the Shred415 Facebook page. “Can I do this?” I asked myself and I decided I had to try.

My first class was June 2013 in Lincoln Park. In some ways it feels like a lifetime ago, but I will never forget how that first class made me feel. I left with energy, determination, and confidence that I hadn’t felt in a long time. Sometimes I hear songs that give me goosebumps as I’m transported back in time to a favorite Saturday morning in Lincoln Park with Mark running back and forth and yelling during a mile challenge, an early morning favorite playlist with Fadil, or a flat road Tuesday with Kim V.

Over the years, so much has changed in my life, but support from the Shred415 community has been a constant. When my first baby was born, I remember instructors and staff taking turns feeding or holding her as I rushed into class. The same question kept popping up as life unfolded – “Can I do this?” And Shred always helped me see that I could. Through three pregnancies, then the chaos of juggling a career and three young children, I found my peace and power on the decks and treads. 

A year ago, I was recovering from baby #3 and working to regain strength again. The Covid-19 pandemic struck and then seemingly out of nowhere, I found out I had cancer. It was Hodgkins lymphoma and would require six months of chemotherapy. As I laid in bed one night shortly after my diagnosis, the question came to me again – “Can I do this?” I reflected on how far I had come, and I promised myself I would keep my body moving during cancer treatment to protect my mental and physical health.

Livestreams with my Shred instructors became my outlet when I couldn’t go anywhere due to my compromised immune system. Once again, Shred came through for me with encouraging shoutouts, emails, and messages. 

My last chemotherapy infusion was in January 2021, and my latest PET scan shows no evidence of cancer. I’m working hard to rebuild my strength , and now I’m back at Shred and training for the Chicago marathon!  

Note from Shred415: We are so honored to be able to help support Betsy through this journey. She has been a long time Shredder, and friend, and her presence in the studio embodies everything we built our company around. If you are willing and able please consider donating to her Marathon Fundraising page to help support the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society. More than a workout, more than ever!