Member Testimonial: Fitness

By: Mary Cullen, Member Since 1990


I am so glad to be back in the Club!  I’ve been a member for a long time; the Club is my Happy Place. It is the place I go where I’m guaranteed to feel better than before I went.


I have felt safe since first going back when it re-opened. The COVID prevention practices directed by staff are followed by members – everyone is wearing a mask and are armed with a disinfectant bottle and wipe provided at the welcome desk upon entering.


Although it felt strange in the beginning, it is now feeling more normal. Some classes are back (Katie’s Yoga on Thursday (6 pm) and Saturday (10 am). Allison’s Body Pump is back too.)  I’m seeing old friends and acquaintances.


I spoke to a member who just recently came back. He had been concerned about crowds and was relieved to see while there are some member present, it is far from crowded. In my experience, there have typically been fewer than 15 members in the fitness center.


The big thing for me is the mental health benefit that comes from being at the Club. I feel much better than those first awful months of COVID lockdown and am thrilled to be back at my Happy Place!  We, as a society, still have far to go before this virus is under control. But the Club is doing it’s part responsibly and providing a needed respite from the madness.


Member Testimonial: Yoga

By: Joyce Korab


I love that yoga with Katie is back in person. I have enjoyed both the Thursday evening and Saturday morning classes.


The basketball court has been good for class, but it’s great to also take advantage of these beautiful fall days. We recently took one of the Saturday classes on the deck. Thank you Katie!


Thank you to Heather and the club for setting this up. It’s great to see some in person small group classes being held.


Member Testimonial: Yoga

By: Kalina Lovzonova


Denise Rowe is the best yoga teacher I have ever had. Her knowledge and explanations of the anatomy behind simple yoga poses is amazing. The most important thing she taught me is the awareness of my own body – what I need to feel while doing a particular position. I found this very helpful because I can self-correct while doing yoga on my own. This way I can be sure that I am doing the poses correctly in order to get the benefit of yoga and not get an injury.

She is such a generous person giving her extra time and knowledge and even her own equipment to get the best practice possible. Denise is able to adjust her program depending on the level of the class participants and offers a lot of props and modifications of the poses so everybody can participate and not feel left out.


Welcome Back Jeff!

It makes us incredibly happy to welcome Jeff back to his indoor tennis court! Jeff has been a member of Aspen Hill Club for nearly 40 years. Upon moving to the area, he began playing tennis at the Club with his IBM coworker Earl. These two gentlemen continue playing tennis together weekly for 37 years later—every Sunday morning. It warms our hearts to give our members a place to get their exercise and enjoy their tennis!

Member Spotlight: Much More than Just a Workout – Brill Family – December 2019

Marlie and Andy had always enjoyed being a member of a gym, and when they moved to a new area in 2012 they had nowhere to go. With some research, Marlie uncovered a hidden gem! She knew she needed somewhere that she could go to work out, but what she found was something much more.

Marlie explains part of her search process, “I didn’t know The Club was there and didn’t know anyone that was a member…I worked from home and needed somewhere that would watch the kids when I was working out.” Eric gave Marlie a fantastic tour during her first visit, Marlie was so impressed with what she had unearthed that she joined that very night.

When Marlie first joined the Club, Matt was 2 years old while Ben was 5. The boys started out in Child Minding, and that first summer they entered Mindy’s Kids Kamp. The kids loved going to Aspen Hill because they did so many fun activities. The family were regular participants in Aspen Hill Club’s kids’ activities such as our annual Pumpkin Carvin’ Party, Trick-or-Treat Parade and our annual Gingerbread House Party.

During summertime Kids Kamp one of the daily activities is playing 30-minutes of tennis. The kids continued going to Kids Kamp for four years and continued playing tennis, but enjoyed the other activities more! It wasn’t until this past Summer that Matt and Ben focused on tennis camp. Matt and Ben both participated in full-day Champion’s Tennis Camp and their tennis games flourished! Both participated in their first competitions—being members of Aspen Hill Club’s Championship-winning Junior Interclub Team and even entering their first sanctioned USTA tennis tournaments.

Marlie stays busy while the kids are playing tennis. She regularly has personal training sessions with Heather, which she enjoys even though Marlie says (about Heather) “She kicks my butt! But it’s great.” Marlie also enjoys swimming workouts in the pool and has been attended Jeff Klein’s Saturday morning Beginner Tennis Drills.

Andy grew up playing tennis for fun and envisioned playing tennis at Aspen Hill Club when they became members. He didn’t realize that the boys would be so into playing, but he’s happy that tennis is such a great family bonding time. The family often plays doubles, in fact, they are in the process of upgrading their membership to “Presidential” so they can move their weekly neighborhood tennis games indoors during the winter season. In addition to tennis, Andy enjoys playing racquetball with friends at the Club.

The Brill family stays very active with many activities at the Club, but what really makes the space special to Marlie is the relationships that she has built, “I like that the staff have been there, they know my kids and look out for them. Heather let me know that Ben hit a winning forehand in a tennis match!” The kids know that they have family friends in the staff too, in fact, the cool lifeguard (James) helped him pull out his first tooth!”

The Brill family has so many memories at Aspen Hill Club and is a great motivation for all families and individuals to be active. “Put yourself out there at least once, everyone is so nice!… I joined a tennis class to learn tennis, not to meet friends. But now have new friends!” explains Marlie.

Marlie, Andy, Ben, and Matt—THANK YOU for adding so much to our community at the Aspen Hill Club. Every time you “check-in” at the front desk, the Club is a happier place!


Member Review – Sterling Hoffman

I love to share the good things in my life and one of them for the past 31 years has been our fitness club – The Aspen Hill Club – located in north Silver Spring, MD.

It is our daily go-to place providing so many fitness options. It opens early – 5:30am – so those who want to get in and get out to go to work can do so.

Among its “amenities” are:
• Tennis 21 courts (6 indoor hard and 13 outdoor clay and 2 outdoor hard)
• Racquetball (4 courts)
• Pickleball
• Basketball court (indoor)
• Olympic-sized indoor swimming pool
• Jogging track (1/10 mile)
• Free-weights, treadmills, ellipticals, ski, and other cardio machines, resistance machines for upper body/lower body and core, kettle bells, straps and bands, fitness balls and much more.
• Dedicated specialty training room (the “torture chamber” formerly a racquetball court)
• “Spinning” room (formerly a racquetball court)
• Dance studio-like classroom
• Massage therapist on-site
• Instructive classes galore: spinning, water aerobics, Zumba, Pilates, stretching, HIIT, Feldenkrais, yoga, boxing, tennis (drills and private lessons, leagues, ladders and contract time), swimming lessons, personal training
• Summer camp for kids
• Field trips to US Open (tennis)
• Morning coffee service and newspapers
• On-line reservations for courts
• Towel service
• Locker room services of jacuzzi/hot tub and sauna
• Restaurant
• Child care
• A beautiful, modern facility inside and out

While more expensive than some limited-offering gyms, it is so worth the price! There is a camaraderie among members not found elsewhere. Many lifelong friendships have been made, savvy advice from the wise and successful and even some client acquisitions for our portrait art business!

It’s like a country club without the golf, the expense and the attitudes!

If you live in the DC area, check them out. You can get a free guest pass, have a yearly membership or be a month-to-month member!

“You’re Only As Old As You Feel” – Senior Member Highlights

Over the next several months, we will be using our newsletter to highlight members who have redefined aging. Check back for updated entries.

Here are the questions we posed:

  1. How do you define aging?
  2. How have you defied society’s idea of aging?
  3. What advice would you give to your 20 or 30 something self?
  4. What do you do to stay mentally and physically fit?


Terry Johnson

  1. How do you define aging?  

As I have progressed in age, I have noticed there are more opportunities for me to grow, and develop spiritually, intellectually, emotionally, culturally, physically and relationally.  I think when life has pushed me in a direction from which I intended to go or completely spun me around….I look up, take an assessment and look for the lesson and the silver lining.  Aging doesn’t have to define anyone; I believe it’s all part of life than can be treasured.

 2. How have you defied society’s idea of aging?

Society says you work in your career, raise your family, retire and then do the things you have always wanted to do. I don’t believe one should wait too long to do anything. I have always tried to experience many things in life regardless of my age. I truly believe hope and joy defies age.

  1. What advice would you give to your 20 or 30 something self? 

Always, treat people the way you wish to be treated. People may not ever remember your name or what you did…most of the time people will always remember how you treated them or how you made them feel when they interacted with you. Most of all, when people show you who they are believe them. Know when to let go and move on.

 4. What do you do to stay mentally and physically fit? 


To stay mentally fit I must stay spiritually fit, because for me that is the bedrock of  my being able to stay physically fit. It includes reading my bible, eating correctly, exercising, resting enjoying life. Sometimes you have to make lemonade when life gives you lemons. 








Michael Leonard

  1. How do you define aging?

Aging to me is: (I’m a runner). “Hey! I’m running just as fast as ever, but my elderly Timex Race Watch is really slowing  down!”

  1. How have you defied society’s idea of aging?

I’m in training for a marathon (26.2 miles) at age 81, I’m told that might not be society’s idea of what a person my age would be doing. 


  1. What advice would you give to your 20 or 30 something self?

I would have advised my 20 to 30 year old self—- (a ‘no-nothing’ who thought he was such a ‘know-it-all’) to listen more carefully and understand better the wisdom and maturity of his elders. 


  1. What do you do to stay mentally and physically fit?I’m a distance runner. Most of the people I train with are one or two generations younger than me. That makes for some pretty tough workouts! I also do lots of ‘cross-training’ here at AHC—Pilates, body-pump, weight-training, and supplemental running on the indoor track. Mentally, I play brain games that emphasize training in memory, attention, flexibility and math. I believe whatever mental acuity I have has been greatly enhanced by being physically fit. (“The body is the temple of the mind.”) Folks, as the old saying goes, “Old age ain’t for sissies!” You have to really work hard  to keep mind and body from succumbing to the ravages of Father Time! Do your best to make the most of each and every day!


Liz Hastings


  1. How do you define aging?

As a process that takes place over time and is universal to all living beings.


  1. How have you defied society’s idea of aging? 
    I’m not sure I have, unless the definition of a 73-year-old woman is befuddled and decrepit.


  1. What advice would you give to your 20 or 30 something self? 
    Start now to develop the habits that will serve you well for the future.  I’m sure I didn’t do that in my 20’s but

thankfully, I started in my 30’s.


  1. What do you do to stay mentally and physically fit?
    Do the things that I love to do that keep me moving – tennis, walking, traveling, cooking, and, actually, using the gym. Plus, I try to keep myself informed and use my time to help my family, friends, and people I don’t even know.


Cheryl Bunyan

  1. How do you define aging? 

I see aging as just the normal passage of time that brings about dynamic change in people; some changes are for the better especially those intellectual ones that come about from life experience.

  1. How have you defied society’s idea of aging?

Perhaps staying true to myself and not letting others dictate what is appropriate for me has served me best.

  1. What advice would you give to your 20 or 30 something self?

I would have been more encouraging when it came to making health and fitness an important priority.

  1. What do you do to stay mentally and physically fit?

I try to find a balance of both physical and mental pursuits especially activities that lend themselves to new learning and personal growth.


Adrian Dantley

  1. How do you define aging?

    I define aging by how I feel on the inside. If you have a great diet you will age gracefully. You will age gracefully if you take care of yourself. Unfortunately, the majority of people who think they are doing the right thing don’t have a clue. 
  2. How have you defied society’s idea of aging?

    Society would say that as we age, we should slow down in order to preserve our bodies.  I train harder than I did when I was in my twenties and thirties and playing 82 games a year in the NBA. Back then, I spent more time working on basketball skills than lifting weights and doing cardio. My doctors have required me to take a battery of tests because my blood pressure and resting heart rate are so low, especially for a 65 year old. They thought something was clinically wrong with me because they have never had a patient my age with those statistics. Of course, they concluded what I already knew, that I am in superb health. 
  3. What advice would you give a 20 or 30 something?

    Talk to your elders. Pick the brains of those who have already been through it all. Incorporate their wisdom, advice and opinions in your life. 
  4. What do you do to stay mentally and physically fit?

    I workout hard 5 days a week. I used to workout 6 days. I found that by taking off two days, I have better workout during the week.  I work for fatigue in weight lifting and running. Every time I run, I run a little faster or for a longer distance. One of the best feelings in the world is when I finally finish a workout, take a hot shower and eat a delicious and nutritious meal.

Daryl Paunil 

  1. How do you define aging?Aging is your body’s increasing inability to do what the mind wants it to do.

    2. How have you defied society’s idea of aging?

    I may look a little younger than I am and I may be stronger than some my age but my joints sure don’t feel like it.

    3. What advice would you give a 20 or 30 something?

    My advice to someone 20 is to keep doing what you enjoy, almost to excess because that’s the point of being 20.  Work on your friendships, because the good ones will last your lifetime. My advice to someone 30 is watch what you eat, develop good workout habits that will stay with you for life and get good rest because now it starts to count.

    4. What do you do to stay mentally and physically fit?

    I stay healthy by working out 5 days a week and eating healthy about 5 days a week. I stay mentally fit by working full time, I read a couple hours each day and have hobbies that require problem solving or creativity.