Shaped by Faith

Theresa Rowe runs through a workout while filming a segment of her exercise show, “Shaped by Faith,” on Tuesday at her home near Calhoun.

Five Christian networks — NRB TV, Upliftv, Parables TV, Global 7.TV and Inspiration TV — now air “Shaped by Faith” with Theresa Rowe.

The McLean County woman’s faith-based fitness program is available to nearly 300 million viewers in 200 countries.

This week, Rowe’s living room has been turned into a television studio while a local film crew records the show’s second season.

Linen-colored couches and rolled rugs have been pushed into the dining area to clear the living room floor.

The set is simple: a black yoga mat on shiny hardwoods and a large “Shaped by Faith” sign propped up on Rowe’s fireplace mantel. Family photos flank both sides of the fireplace.

For the episode taped on Tuesday, Rowe looked like a soccer mom with her long, blond hair pulled back in a ponytail. She wore a lime green “Shaped by Faith” T-shirt and black leggings.

“Is everybody ready? I’m rolling,” a member of the film crew said.

On cue, Rowe picked up her 3-pound weights and started the segment with curtsy lunges.

“I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go,” she said, looking at the camera. “ ... Sometimes, when you feel a little lost, look up. God is there for you.”

Rowe writes the format for each show. She uses a teleprompter for Bible verses and to remind her of the exercise routine she wants to follow. She ad-libs everything else.

She reminds viewers of the correct posture for exercises. In between directions, she serves as part pastor and part life coach.

During Tuesday’s taping, Rowe asked viewers to hold a lunge. “Sometimes, it’s in the waiting that you grow stronger.”

Her audience often sends emails and posts Facebook messages, thanking Rowe for the show.

“You have made a tremendous impact on me and my well-being,” one viewer wrote. “Thank you for everything you have given to me and shared with me.”

Rowe feels at home in front of a camera.

From an early age, she was drawn to a career in television. At one time, she taught runway models and cut a few TV commercials.

She started teaching fitness classes when she was 19 years old and living at Offutt Air Force Base near Omaha, Nebraska.

Rowe was born with three holes in her heart and has had two open-heart surgeries during her life. Through exercise, she has remained fit and is in good health.

Besides her work on TV, Rowe leads senior citizens’ exercise programs at the Daviess County Public Library, Owensboro Christian Church and Heritage Place. She writes a column for the Messenger-Inquirer titled Shaped by Faith, and she hosts a local radio program under the same name on WOMI and on WGBF in Evansville.

She has produced three faith-based DVDs. Many fans may remember Rowe from a fitness program that aired for at least 14 years on a local TV channel through Time Warner Cable.

“I think that was a training process for this,” she said. “(‘Shaped by Faith’) is so different from other exercise programs. The word of God is in every show. Hopefully, it will draw viewers closer to Christ.”

Renee Beasley Jones, 270-228-2835, rbeasleyjones@messenger-inquirer.com.

Renee Beasley Jones, 270-228-2835, rbeasleyjones@messenger-inquirer.com

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