Member Spotlight: Tony Tortorello

Fitness brought Tony Tortorello to Courts Plus, but the community feeling has kept him coming back.

Tortorello joined Courts Plus about thirty years ago. A resident of Elmhurst for over forty years, he started coming in about three days a week once his kids were older and he had a bit more time to focus on getting to the gym.

A health scare about five years ago emphasized to Tortorello the importance of maintaining an exercise routine.

He was at Courts Plus on that day about five years ago when he had a heart attack. He credits Courts Plus employees, Kathy Schroeder and Brian Allen, for getting to him quickly and using a defibrillator to restart his heart.

“They rescued me,” he says.

His commitment to regular exercise helped to minimize the damage to his heart and he’s grateful for the skill and training Kathy and Brian used that day.

With help from cardiac rehab experts at Elmhurst Hospital, he has modified his workout routine slightly, adding more intervals to his running, but keeping up his weight lifting.

Beyond fitness training, what he loves about the facility is the added social aspects of being a regular.

“When you have somebody who is here to talk to you, even in-between sets, that makes it a lot more appealing,” he says.

Now, he and his wife, also a member, have a group of friends at Courts Plus they see often. For some in the group, it’s a great motivator for getting up and going to the gym when they know they’ll see a friendly face. For others, it offers a chance to share their interest in fitness with someone and get to know them beyond the gym.

The group has planned events outside working out. A trip to an exhibit at the Elmhurst Art Museum was a recent one, as well as to Cantigny Park. Upcoming plans include taking in a showing of the World War II film, Midway.
“I’ve been to other facilities and heard about other health club facilities that are cold and impersonal.”

Instead, Tortorello finds himself sticking with Courts Plus.

“The staff greets you; they’re always friendly. I really like the place.”