With its high ceilings, spacious interior and relaxed atmosphere, Fitness Factory attracts both competitive local athletes as well as those simply looking to improve their overall health.

Although the gym opened its doors last November, an official grand opening celebration will take place in early April, said owners Mary Sue Teplitz and Andy Berman.

"Our goal is to have our clients leave happy," Berman said. "Both Mary Sue and I are completely hands-on and involved in the day-to-day operations."

The two partners are often found working out and leading training sessions in the 4,000-square-foot space. Both have extensive experience in the fitness industry. Berman has been a personal trainer for 18 years, and Teplitz is a holistic counselor and certified instructor.

They are now excited about offering the community a comfortable venue where all of their individual fitness goals could be met. "We offer all components of physical fitness," Berman said.

Each client is matched with one of the seven personal trainers on staff. "We have someone for every age group," Berman said.

Together they create a fitness regimen that is attainable, fun and interesting. Some activities include cardio work conducted on one of several machines located throughout the gym, strengthening and flexibility exercises using cable pulley systems, weight training using free weights and aerobic classes.

Berman said that several members of Fairfield Prep and Staples High Schools sports teams train at Fitness Factory. "I love working with these kids," he said.

On a large bulletin board near the locker rooms, Berman pointed out several members of the Staples Football team who work out with him and have been recruited to play college ball.

Berman also added that Fitness Factory's trainers are also skilled at working with golfers who want to improve their game. One of the trainers has a background in nutrition and frequently consults with clients about the benefits of combining healthy eating habits with exercise.

"A lot of parents rely on us to keep their kids active and healthy," Berman said. "Exercise is a great way to release energy and it enhances their happiness and self esteem, too."

According to Teplitz, many women exercise regularly to help keep their bones strong and healthy.

"By strengthening the outsides of your body, you also become stronger for life on the inside," she said. "I'm interested in looking at holistic goals for health."

She enjoys walking around and seeing clients having a good time while they exercise. "I like to be with the people," Teplitz said. "It's wonderful to be in an environment where everyone is happy and making the kind of lifestyle changes that they want to make. It's so gratifying to see our clients having a good time while they exercise."

Although Teplitz and Berman both wanted to open up their own gym for a long time, once they made the decision to become partners, they took their time in finding the right location.

Teplitz said, "We wanted it to be on the Post Road and have plenty of parking for easy access."

Berman agreed. He said that they looked at about a dozen sites before deciding to open in the Crate & Barrel plaza.

"All of the natural light was definitely one of its selling points," Berman said. "We wanted to create a stress-free, friendly atmosphere that other personal training gyms in town don't offer. We love to do what we do. We have a passion and that's what separates us form other facilities."

Anyone interested in learning more about Fitness Factory is offered a complimentary training session. "We want them to see what we are all about," Berman said. "We are confident that our work will speak for itself and you will want to come back."

Along with keyless lockers, Fitness Factory's changing rooms have showers, towels and amenities, such as shampoo, conditioner and deodorant.

"We try to make it as convenient as possible," Berman noted. "Many people come to work out before heading to the train into the city. We do want we can to accommodate their schedules. We know that life can be hectic. When people come in here, they want to be here."

Fitness Factory is located at 1200 Post Road E., Westport. For more information, call 203-557-4084.