Ann Gross, 37, of Amherst, grew up in a Polish-American household in Elma, where the food was tasty but not necessarily healthy. She watched family members struggle with diabetes and heart problems, and vowed she would eat better and exercise.

Gross, a physical therapist and nationally certified personal trainer, opened Crunch gym two weeks ago in the Sheridan Plaza, at Sheridan Drive and Sweet Home Road in Amherst. The new gym offers a no-contract, $9.95-a-month membership that includes weight and aerobic equipment, as well as cardio and strength training classes.

What is your nutrition philosophy?

I believe in clean eating, eating things from their natural sources and not a lot of processed foods. I really believe in order to meet fitness goals and to be of healthy weight, it’s about finding out how many calories your body should be consuming based on what your metabolism looks like. If you overeat – whether it’s a fat, a carbohydrate or a protein, anything will be stored then as fat. So it’s about understanding that balance.

How often do you eat?

I usually eat about five meals, about three hours apart, but all my meals are about 300 calories. I fuel my body all day long.

The food you can’t resist?

– Scott Scanlon