I joined the gym five years ago. My goal was to be healthy and manage a chronic progressive health condition. When I began, I met with a personal trainer about six times to devise several workout routines. These workouts are a mix of cardio, strength, balance and flexibility. I come to the gym most days; if there is a day I can’t get there due to other commitments, I don’t stress too much about it. Here are some key differences between now and five years ago:
• Lost over 30 pounds
• Body fat went from 43% to 32%
• Visceral fat went from 11 to 7
• Metabolic age went from 50 to 43 – don’t forget, five years have passed!
• Physique rating went from 3 to 5
• When considering chest, waist, both arms, hips and both legs, lost 26
Both bone mass and muscle mass decreased a little bit; my goals are to
get these back up.
My workouts are both consistent and varied, I think I am working on multiple things each day. I don’t get crazy sweaty – no doubt I should get sweatier! It does prove though, that slow and steady provides results. The moral of this story: if I can do this, you can!

Anonymous DFC Member

Just because I’m in my 70s doesn’t mean I shouldn’t be able to touch my toes or enjoy any physical activities or even crawl around on all fours with my grandchildren. Durham Fitness feeds not just the body, but the soul. And the people are great!

Noel M.

I have visited the Durham Fitness Center for the past few years when in the area to see family. The Fitness Center is a true hidden gem — a full range of modern equipment, clean, great hours, and friendly staff. It’s a 10/10 for me.

Rob from Washington, D.C.

The facility gave me not only everything I needed to complete my workout but the atmosphere, staff and community was incredible! I am in town to visit my mom and with the weather making it difficult for me to train with my coach, this was the place to be. Thank you so much 🙂

Team Canada Paralympic Thrower
Track & Field- Discus
F38 World Record Holder
2x World Bronze Medalist
2x Paralympian

Renee Foessel

Excellent facility, very clean and well-maintained equipment. Friendly staff and lots of space for each individual. Locker rooms were very clean. Exceeded my expectations for a small-town gym. Would recommend to anyone for a great workout.

Taylor McNabb, Edmonton

I like everything about the DFC. I am trying to manage my belly during festivities. I am brand new to the DFC. The gym is very clean with a friendly atmosphere from both patrons and staff. There is lots of space, great amenities and all the equipment needed plus more. All gym equipment is in excellent working condition.

Sam, Australia

I enjoyed the staff, selection of equipment, cleanliness, and space. I am a drop in from out of town. The patrons and staff (Kate and Michelle) are super welcoming. Possibly the cleanest and best equipped gym I’ve been to. Visiting from out of town and wish we had a gym like this where I live. Will definitely make Durham Fitness a regular visit on any trip to Durham.

Rachel, Australia

DFC is my go-to gym when I’m here visiting family. They have everything you would need for a full-body workout. The people are warm and friendly, and the place is spotless!


I’m a senior and enjoy coming to DFC. It is very clean. The staff is very friendly and helpful. It gets me out of the house and I’m around people. I have been coming to DFC for almost four years.

Eleanor Johnston

I’m 65 years old, I’ve been coming to DFC for almost 4 yrs. I come 3-4 times a week. It gets me out around people. It’s a nice, clean, friendly place to come to. The staff is very friendly and helpful.

Shelly Mead

The staff are always welcoming, know you by name and take interest in the members. Gym friendships with members over the years keeps me coming back and motivated.

Josh, Member

Such a welcoming friendly community. Always clean and a great assortment of equipment and free weights.

Ross Ellen

New equipment, clean bright atmosphere, friendly staff, a nice mixture of member ages, kind of a family YMCA feel, yet, a good place to lift some heavy weights, beat a heavy bag, or cardio your heart out.

Todd Nielsen

Durham fitness has turned into a regular thing for me. Amazing staff, everything is clean. The people are accommodating and judgment free! They have lots of equipment and are always happy to help you out.

Google Review

Friendly staff, great place to work out. Its a smaller gym but has everything I need for my workout program.

Tammy Wilson

A great day starts with a good workout. The good feeling from a good workout helps get you through the work day.

Bill Mellor

Wonderful place. Well equipped, new equipment, very helpful staff and good rates. I’m glad I joined.

Ian MacPherson

Great new facility. Up to date equipment. Good atmosphere for getting into a good workout.

Google Review

Great gym. Always clean. Good equipment.

Cole Black

Well equipped gym kept spotless by very friendly staff.

Kevin Cannon

Great staff ; clean; awesome equipment

Dee Shan

Good quality equipment. Clean and relatively quiet.

Geoffrey Shea

Good prices and equipment plus showers.


Small town gym, big heart.

Aaron M

Hey, guys! I just wanted to reach out and say thank you! 
I have been a member of DFC for about 8 years.  The hard work an dedication from the crew is unbelievable.  I was really pleased with how hard the crew worked to keep the gym open during COVID and the protocols that were taken!  Always a very clean an tidy atmosphere as well as friendly and helpful staff! 
Just wanted to say thank you! 

Zeb Dennis

Welcoming and well equipped.  All the equipment and more than what my regular gym back in the city has.


A Big Thumps Up To The Durham Fitness Centre. My daughter (age 30) and myself (age 60) were visiting relatives in Durham and had the opportunity to work out at your centre . It was a very positive experience. The staff was friendly and informative.     The locker room and sauna are very clean and user friendly. You have state of the art cardio and weight training machines which suits all ranges of fitness levels/goals from the heavy weight lifting muscle man to the the petite woman who wants to stay trim and toned. The entire facility is very, very clean. Thanks again for providing this state of the art facility that promotes wellness in its local residents and visitors.

Teresa Warmington

I joined the DAC about a year ago, when I noticed that I was getting a little flabby. After 5 months of working with weights, I started cross-training to get more benefit from working out. Now after the year at DAC, I have reduced my waistline by 4 inches and get by with less sleep. I meet lots of people who are self-motivated and learn different ways to work muscle groups from them and therefore never get tired of any routine before learning another.  Coming to the Durham Activity Centre is now part of my weekly routine and I look forward to it each day.       Thanks DFC!


“…The wide range of classes and equipment available at the gym help me incorporate strength training, cardio, flexibility and endurance into my weekly routine. The gym is a great place to spend time with your family and friends while making a significant contribution to better personal health and fitness.”


“… The folks at the centre are friendly and incredibly helpful. Both Cathy and I love the welcome and support we’ve received there. … Thanks to everybody, staff and volunteers!!!”


We continue to come to the Durham Fitness Centre because it has everything we want in a fitness facility. It has an excellent variety of equipment and weights. The staff are knowledgeable, helpful and friendly and the gym is always super clean. We have experienced a number of different facilities in Ontario and Florida, U.S.A. but none have compared to the friendliness and cleanliness of the DFC. We really appreciate the DFC and are proud to be members

Randy and Joy

I would like to take this opportunity to thank the Durham Activity Centre and its staff for all their help and encouragements for the last 10 months.
In the last few months since my introduction to the centre I can’t believe how much of a difference I feel physically.
I had heart surgery awhile back and when I asked the cardiologist in Toronto, what he thought about doing these activities, coached by staff, he welcomed the idea and signed my application with greatest delight. He mentioned exercise and weight control are the best forms of recovery and to keep up the program. I had a great loss of my muscle tone and atrophy had set in.
Now after 10 months of workout out, I am able to lift and do many other things I wasn’t capable of before.
Thanks again to the activity centre and the staff, your giving me a new lease on life.

Ann Mahar

I am a 70 year old member of the Durham Activity Centre and have been using this facility for many years. My gym experiences started after retirement I found lack of exercise was causing the waist line to spread and muscle power to decrease. I could no longer see my toes and I hugged and puffed as I pulled myself up the stairs. To enjoy retirement something had to be done! A year later and 40 pounds lighter I was able to do a 100 mile Kayak paddle in the Queen Charlotte Islands.
Since then I have lived through spinal and leg deterioration due to spinal stenosis in the neck and lumbar areas. Constant training and workout out maintained strength and prevented too much of the muscle deterioration. After two spinal surgeries I was told that with the sciatica nerve permanently damaged I would always have to wear a leg brace and never be able walk more than 10 minutes.
The moment the surgeon said I could return to the Gym I was at back at the Durham Activity Centre hiring a trainer. Davids patient expert work got me healing rapidly. Next I hired Jackie and have kept working with her ever since.
It has been a dedicated journey. From being told that I would become a quadriplegic and I would have to live with a leg brace, to now being able to walk 10 kilometres. After 40 years, I have re learned how to ride a bike, joined the spin class and am still enjoying the body strengthening. I have never felt so fit! Doctors cannot believe that I only rarely take a pain pill. If I miss the work outs for any length of time my body pain tells me.
Some where during that time were was a melanoma on my big toe which led toe amputation.
What would I have done without the Durham Activity Centre and the always enthusiastic staff who kept me coming back, encouraged me, and kept me pushing through what I thought was my limits.
Thank you Durham Activity Centre.


The first day I started at the old Durham Activity Centre was the beginning of a new life for me. In fact, if what my doctor was telling was correct my 50th birthday last December may well have been a memorial service. The decision to join the DAC wasn’t really a choice; it was the only option I had left if I want to see my kids grow up. I suffered from a vast array of health problems the least of which was obesity. I was a cardiac arrest or stroke waiting to happen. My personal well being was at jeopardy and out of control. On top of all that my self esteem was in despair. At 42 years old, I was a mess. Like so many others, I thought I knew how to solve my problems. I didn’t know much it seemed, and what I did know was too little and leading me to failure. I was approaching the end of my rope. I didn’t know how to stop the slide. What I did know was that it was my own fault and if I was going to change directions, it was up to me to change course. That much was clear to me, but I still was lost in how to get going. I was like a cat using my ninth life and set of headlights was being down on me. I need someone or something to pull me back to the curb for one last chance.
Without being too dramatic, I owe what I am today to two things. I’m alive because of the DAC and its newest incarnation the Durham Fitness Centre and my brother. He gave me my first membership as a gift. If he hadn’t cared enough about me to give me that gift, I would never have made it to the doors of the DAC and met my first personal trainer. Between her and the DAC board of directors, who went out of their way to accommodate not only me but many other members facing time constraints and other obstacles, I began the slow struggle to regain my life and self worth. They allowed me the place and the time, and supported me with encouragement and all the things I needed to begin the physical transformation that I underwent over the next few years. My life has been transformed beyond anything I could ever imagine in those first few, dark days, and I feel so much appreciation for the Durham Fitness Centre, it’s staff, it’s board of directors and all the wonderful people I have had the great opportunity to workout with over the years. My success would never have been possible without the Durham Fitness Centre. I’m truly humbled by the magnitude of the gifts I have received from my relationship with the Durham Fitness Centre. I owe my existence and lifestyle to it and will forever be grateful for everything it has given me.
Today the Durham Fitness Centre, like the Phoenix, has risen from total destruction. The metaphor is ironic. Over the years, I’ve seen so many people change their lives with the help of the DFC and it’s outstanding staff and board of directors. I’m proud to be one of many such Phoenixes rising from our own person destructions over the years. Today’s DFC is modern and rivals any private, more expensive centre in the region. We are truly fortunate to have a facility like the DFC. As I travel the world doing things, I never dreamed I’d be doing- as I take easy breathes and smile at my personal health and lifestyle- I always remember the DFC and can’t wait to get home and back to the place where my new life began.
For almost a decade, I have opened the doors- first of the old DAC, and now, of the DFC early in the morning six days a week. I consider those first hours every morning the beginning of my work day. The only days I miss are when I am competing or training in another part of the province or country. Some people ask from time to time why I do it. I tell them it’s because I’m grateful, and because I want to pay it forward. I want to give all the other people who come into the DFC every day the same things the DFC has given me over the years. It is an honour for me to serve the DFC each morning as a volunteer. In addition to my health and fitness, the DFC has given me many wonderful relationships ad personal opportunities. It is truly like family for me at the DFC. I thank the universe everyday for the DFC and the many people who have worked so hard to give this awesome gift to our community and keep it there. I’m humbled by their dedication, hard work and sacrifice. You are my heroes, and I thank you from the bottom of my heart.

John Elvidge –
Grateful and continuous member and volunteer since February 2003