To Keep You Inspired … Diane Purdy

Club Fit’s Payroll Specialist Diane Purdy Keeps Us Inspired

{by Lisa Olney, Club Fit guest blogger}

Club Fit’s Payroll Specialist Diane Purdy with Personal Trainer Lori Nigro

Club Fit’s Payroll Specialist Diane Purdy with Personal Trainer Lori Nigro

Club Fit’s highest staff honor is its Annual Service Award, presented under veil of secrecy each year at the Annual Meeting — a day of education, team building, and staff appreciation. So, when Diane Purdy, Club Fit’s Payroll Specialist of almost 20 years was asked to lead a Q & A about the Club’s new human resource management system, Dayforce, she was prepared and ready for any question that came her way. What she wasn’t prepared for was the proverbial table turn. Instead of being introduced as the afternoon’s next speaker, she was introduced through a cleverly written poem as Club Fit’s 2016 Annual Service Award winner!

Diane may have been the only person in the room surprised by the announcement. Her consummate work ethic and dedication strikes a lasting impression for all who meet her. Diane’s attention to detail and support to managers and staff has made her invaluable in every area of Club Fit. Diane takes her responsibility as Club’s Payroll Specialist seriously, and over the years she has braved many of Mother Nature’s wicked weather curve balls to get to work, even during weather closures, because, simply put, “Our people need to get paid.” The support she provides has become her calling card, and Diane has helped guide her team through two significant technology launches helping to maximize Club Fit’s internal efficiency and overall position as a leader in the fitness industry. But most importantly, on Diane’s watch, people come first, and everyone is taken care of with equal care and attention.

Diane grew up playing basketball, softball, and running track. As an adult, she enjoyed an effortless balance of health and fitness. But time marches on, and bodies change. As Diane entered her 50s, she realized that maintaining this balance was finally going to require a little more effort. So, she decided it was time to focus on improving her own health and fitness. She found her perfect partner in Club Fit Jefferson Valley Personal Trainer Lori Nigro.

“Lori knew that I was interested in getting in shape and losing weight,” recalls Diane. After their first session, the rest was history, and they’ve been training together since March of 2015. Every Tuesday at 3:30, the duo meets for a 30-minute personal training session. Lori has incorporated high intensity training (HIT) and functional training into Diane’s repertoire. Some days are dedicated to specific body parts, and each session includes stretching and cardio. Diane’s favorite machine is the cross cable machine, and she complements her Club Fit routine by staying active and bicycling through her neighborhood.

“Over the years, I’ve tried just about everything — spinning and cardio tennis, but, this is what I do on Tuesdays,” says Diane. It has been just over 18 months since Diane started her weekly sessions with Lori. She noticed changes right away, and is proud that she has maintained her fitness and weight loss. As for her future fitness goals, Diane is happy continuing her Tuesday sessions with Lori. “I’ll stick with my program,” says Diane. “Lori has shown me so many things. She is motivating, very encouraging and great to work with.”

This February will mark Diane’s 20-year Club Fit anniversary, and Diane most values the caring and friendly culture at the Club, from the staff to the members. “It’s my home away from home, and I love the people,” said Diane. “Everybody cares about their well-being, and the Club cares about helping the community. It’s a great place to work.”

As Diane closes in on the big 2-0, staff and members alike may already know of her love of traveling, NBA basketball, and her favorite team, the San Antonio Spurs. But, did you know that Diane is a huge country music fan with an ear that would make any Nashvillian proud? In 2016 she has already seen 16 big-name artists in concert such as Martina McBride, Reba McEntire, Luke Bryan, Kenney Chesney, Miranda Lambert, and on October 26, Carrie Underwood. 2016 is not over yet, however, and in November she will see Keith Urban and Brett Eldridge, and Stevie Nicks is on the docket for December. Diane has already purchased her tickets for Faith Hill and Tim McGraw’s Soul2Soul tour in October of 2017 — just another fun fact that exemplifies Diane’s attention to detail and strategic planning, a strength that can always be counted on by the Club Fit community.

Fitness Success Story: Janet Murff

Janet and Candice

Club Fit Member Janet Murff and Personal Trainer Candice O’Brien — working together to help Janet reach her goals.

Healthier and happier — Club Fit Member Janet Murff started training with Personal Trainer Candice O’Brien in 2015 and is now stronger, fitter, and happier.

I’d like to express my appreciation to my trainer Candice and Club Fit. I am thrilled! The physical & mental benefits of exercise are amazing.

When I made my decision in November 2015 to have a personal trainer, I was out of shape and feeling stressed from two years of the life changing activities of caring for one’s parents; too much driving, too much sitting. Realizing what a difference a trainer would mean to my success, I signed up — and as luck would have it, I was paired with the right trainer from day one. I began with the goals of improved health and fitness. I knew that I could only commit to two or three gym visits per week. Consistency would make it work. Weight loss was far down my list. Today, I am much stronger, fitter, more toned, and happier than I was a year ago. Weight loss has been a bonus. I know that I could not have done this alone. I am excited to set new goals for 2017 and look forward to continue working with Candice to help me reach these.

Congratulations to Janet on her hard work and her commitment to health!

Fitness Success Story: Kathi Grossman

Kathi before and after

Kathi before, and how she looks today. Amazing progress on her fitness journey!

Kathi Grossman joined Club Fit in October of 2013 at the recommendation
of her doctors. Read how Club Fit has helped to impact her life and help her reach her fitness goals.

I have been morbidly obese all my life. I ended up with Type 2 diabetes, hypertension, hyperlipidemia, arthritis, and no cartilage in one of my knees. I was injecting insulin up to four times a day and taking numerous medications. I finally had enough! I had WLS (weight loss surgery) on September 22, 2011, and lost 210 pounds, which changed my life more than I ever could have imagined. Within hours of the WLS I was off all medications. I am still medication free, except for supplements. Having been obese all my life, as the weight came off, other issues arose. No core, no muscle tone, loose skin EVERYWHERE!! My doctor gave me a prescription to join Club Fit on the HelpRx program, which was the best thing that could have happened to me. Personal Trainer Russ was my first encounter with a trainer. I was pretty intimidated, but Russ took his time, listened to me and my physical limitations, and designed a routine just for me. This was the beginning — I started taking classes, and I mean everything, even things I thought I couldn’t do just to challenge myself. I started with Retro-Low, Low-impact Zumba, Kickboxing, Definitions, 4×4, Corebar, Spin, and Yoga. If they had a class I was there. I started to see where I fit and what I liked to do. This could have been overwhelming as exercise was NEVER a part of my life. Now I love to spin and weight train and do a few machines. The instructors were excellent and most helpful. There are so many wonderful people who have escorted me on my journey. There is, however, one person who stands out and that is General Manager Mark Cuatt. He took me under his wing and gave me a crash course in nutrition and then an exercise regimen for me to follow. He didn’t have to do that; he has enormous responsibilities running the club on a day-to-day basis. Nonetheless, we would meet at the gym, I would email him my food menus and things started to change again! This has not been an easy journey. I had a few setbacks but, to date, I have lost 250 pounds!! As I type the number it seems surreal.

I take advantage of most of the things Club Fit offers. I have a MYZONE belt, I use it always and should I forget it, I am lost. I do the FIT-3D scans, which help you see the transformation you are attaining. This experience would not have been as successful without the help of so many of the personal trainers, instructors and coaches. I wish I could name all of you, as you are all very special to me, because at one time you made it a point to help me with your time, advice or even a friendly “Hello!”. ALL of you have made an impact in changing NOT only my outward appearance but teaching me that being healthy is an everyday choice. Mark Cuatt told me once, I am always going to wage this battle in my head with my weight. Some days I’ll win and some days I’ll lose; but “never give up” is the moral of this story.

So I thank Club Fit for helping me find ME — the me I was meant to be. You have helped
to give a healthy me back to my husband, children and granddaughter. Hopefully I
will be around a long time still working out, and if I can inspire ONE person
through my story, then I have made a difference!

Better Balance Now

Better Balance Now!— Fall Prevention
Meryle Richman, PT, DPT, MS, CST, RYT

As we age the ability to maintain balance becomes more difficult. Many factors influence good balance, some of them are biological; and some we are able to influence and are able to improve. Balance and stability are important factors for aging adults to maintain a healthy lifestyle. Loss of balance is the primary factor in falls, which often results in serious injuries.

Good balance is dependent on sensory input form the eyes, the correct functioning of the balance system in the inner ear, posture and center of gravity and our ability to sense the position and movement in our feet, legs and arms. Vision affects the balance system, as the eyes send messages to the brain telling us where objects are in space.

Aging adults are affected by a loss of muscle mass and strength. This is associated with an increased risk of falls and hip fractures. It also has a great affect on maintaining a healthy lifestyle. Weakness in the ankle musculature may cause difficulty in recovering lost balance more quickly. Strong quadriceps muscles are necessary for good balance and walking. Evidence shows the strength and aerobic training can lead to a reduction in falls.

Loss of flexibility occurs with age. This may lead to difficulty climbing stairs, transferring from sit to stand and or getting out of bed without difficulty. Much of the loss of flexibility is due to inactivity. Flexibility exercises, stretches, gentle yoga will help improve flexibility of major muscle groups and therefore improve ones ability to complete everyday activities.

Postural changes develop as people age but not because they age. Rounded shoulders, forward head postures, increased thoracic curves in the spine are common postural changes. These changes affect the center of gravity in the body moving it forward. With changes in the center of gravity, older adults are more prone to loss of balance and an increased risk of falls.

Medications also contribute to the deterioration of the balance system. Research has shown that adding new medications in the previous two weeks increases the risk for falling.

There are many ways we can adapt to the changes in our bodies as we age. Some helpful tips include:

Promote safety in the home by using non-skid surfaces, eliminating area rugs & improve lighting in the home

  1. Get a yearly eye exam
  2. Proper nutrition and hydration
  3. Know the side effects of your medication
  4. Use caution with pets running around in your home
  5. Different forms of exercise, such as strengthening exercises, flexibility and stretches, postural exercise, yoga, tai chi, and aerobic exercise such as walking, will all contribute to decreasing the risk of falls and improve your balance.

Guidelines from The American College of Sports Medicine suggest that:

1) Healthy adults under the age of 65 should aim for:

 – Moderate intense cardiovascular exercises 30 minutes a day (aerobic exercise), five days a week or vigorous intense exercises 20 minutes a day, 3 days a week and strengthening-exercises twice a week

– Flexibility or stretching exercises are also recommended a minimum of 2-3 days a week

 2) Healthy adults 65 years or older:

 – Low-to-Moderate aerobic exercises, 30 minutes a day, 5 times a week and gentle strengthening-exercises (very light weights), 2- 3 times a week

– Flexibility or stretching exercises at a minimum of 2-3 times a week

Types of Aerobic and Low-to-Moderate Exercises:

Moderate Intense Aerobic Exercises Low-to-Moderate Aerobic Exercises
  • brisk walking
  • running
  • swimming
  • cycling; spinning classes
  • water exercises
  • gardening
  • housework
  • dancing, yoga, tai chi

If you want to determine your fitness level, refer to the reference guide from The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention: http://www.cdc.gov/physicalactivity/everyone/measuring/index.html.

For beginners, you can simply start out by learning the basics of the talk test, which is a rule of thumb for doing moderate-intensity activity and you can still talk, but not sing during an activity. However, if you are doing a vigorous-activity you would want to learn how to find your target heart rate and determine what intensity range you should be exercising at for optimal cardiac performance.

Check out the Stay Healthy Website to determine a simple way to find your target heart rate at: www.cancer.org/healthy/toolsandcalculators/calculators/app/target-heart-rate-calculator. Once you find your target heart rate, wearing a heart rate monitor will make it easier to monitor your desired rate.

If you would like to improve your current level of fitness, but still have questions about how to begin a safe exercise program if you had an injury or illness, our experienced and dedicated licensed physical therapists can help you get started. With Direct Access a prescription is not required to be evaluated. Contact Ivyrehab Briarcliff (914) 762 – 2222 and Ivyrehab Jefferson Valley (914) 245 – 8807 or visit our Website: www.ivyrehab.com to learn more about Direct Access.

References:

(1) Exercise: Designing a Cardiac exercise Program. New York-Presbyterian Hospital. Retrieved September 2, 2011 from http://nyp.org/health/cardiac_exercis3.html

(2) American College of Sports Medicine Position Stand. Retrieved September 2, 2011 from http://www.mhhe.com/hper/nutrition/williams/student/appendix_i.pdf

To Keep You Inspired… Jason Needle

photo collage, Jason and friends.

A photo collage of Jason Needle with his friends and peers at Club Fit, along with our newly redesigned name tags, inspired by and honoring Jason.

You may have noticed that we changed the design of the name tags that we proudly wear at work.  And it’s all for a very good reason — Jason Needle — our colleague and friend. Jason passed away on December 4, 2015.The new name tags will serve to remember Jason, and to encourage us to be supportive of others.  We have implemented Jason’s “I Can. I Will.” tag line on the new name tags as a reminder of who Jason was; a brave person who inspired others to live with a strong sense of community and commitment to live life to the fullest.

Jason Needle once described himself as an Iraq war veteran, a two-time cancer survivor, and a proud member of the Club Fit family. Beating cancer and defending our country are two things everyone can identify as substantial accomplishments. Although it may pale in comparison, Jay’s association with Club Fit would prove to be of paramount importance in his life story. Jay grew up coming to Club Fit and fell in love with the atmosphere. He enjoyed it so much that he went to college to pursue a degree in exercise sports science with the end goal of working at his favorite place.

Jay began working as a personal trainer in the fitness department in 2005. When he wasn’t working, he could still be found in the building working out, lifting weights, or playing basketball. Jay was outgoing, enthusiastic, friendly, and genuinely interested in other people. Because of this, it wasn’t long before everyone knew who Jay was – both staff and members alike. He was also one of the trainers who spearheaded the Parisi Speed School program when it was introduced. This is the area where Jay really shined. He had a passion for training young athletes; watching kids improve and achieve goals and, more importantly, gain confidence was everything to Jay. “Being able to help a child grow confident through fitness and performance is a beautiful thing to me,” he told the Briarcliff Daily Voice. He knew they looked up to him and never lost sight of that.

Jay was the picture of health and fitness when he was diagnosed with Acute Myeloid Leukemia (AML) in November 2010. He spent over 200 days in the hospital the first year of his treatment and achieved remission only to have the leukemia return less than a year later. He was then diagnosed with a rare gene mutation that made it difficult for treatments to be successful. During his five-year battle, he traveled all over New York City and Boston, spoke to countless doctors, went through over twenty different chemotherapy treatments, most of which were experimental trials, radiation and two bone marrow transplants.

Throughout his fight, Club Fit remained an important support system for him. A Facebook page was created entitled “Jason’s Army” which he posted on frequently to stay in touch with everyone. He used his Parisi clients as motivation for himself: “The excitement they show when they reach a new goal or do something they thought couldn’t be done is what drives me day in and day out. If these kids can do it, then so can I!”

And so Jay’s tagline was born. Jay coined the motto “I Can. I Will.” and believed with all of his heart that he would beat the odds against his disease. Again, Jay’s energy and sense of purpose was infectious. His positive and energetic posts more often than not served as motivation for its readers to work to make the world a caring, supportive place. His “I Can. I Will.” attitude exploded and the support was phenomenal as the page grew to over 1,100 followers.

Jay was able to use this following to help other people fighting against cancer as well. By hosting an annual 5k run/walk in 2013, 2014, and 2015, Jason’s Army raised over $40,000 for local charities that support cancer patients. For someone who was going through so much, all he wanted to do was give back and recognize others. He was so thankful for the support of staff, members, and clients from Club Fit that he wanted to help those who didn’t have the same support.

Jay died on December 4, 2015. As the legendary ESPN anchor Stuart Scott said, “When you die, that does not mean that you lose to cancer. You beat cancer by how you live, why you live, and the manner in which you live.” He continued by saying, “So live. Live. Fight like hell. And when you get too tired to fight, lay down and rest and let somebody else fight for you.” The best way to honor Jason’s life and to keep his memory alive is to adopt his “I Can. I Will.” attitude and employ it in your own life.

Club Fit Briarcliff Fitness Director Susie Reiner

— written by Club Fit Member and Guest Blogger Lisa Skelton

Club Fit Briarcliff Fitness Director Susie Reiner loves
helping Members improve their well-being.

Club Fit Briarcliff Fitness Director Susie Reiner

Club Fit Briarcliff Fitness Director Susie Reiner

When you put yourself in the hands of a Personal Trainer, that’s exactly what it is for many people… personal. You trust that your trainer has your best interests at heart, and you need to feel comfortable opening up to them about your goals, your insecurities, your expectations. And feel comfortable letting them see you pre-shower, in all your workout glory!

If the thought of using a Personal Trainer intimidates you, spend some time with Club Fit Briarcliff Fitness Director Susie Reiner… you’ll feel totally comfortable in no time. Susie has served as Director since June 2014, and not only is she one of the most approachable staff members here at Club Fit Briarcliff, she is highly qualified for the position. She began as a dancer, earning her BA in Theater from CUNY Hunter College, but through her own experience with fitness regimens soon realized that personal training was a better fit. “I realized that personal training could accomplish more than just treating someone’s injury or disease. I could get instant feedback, and felt I was actually affecting and preventing disease.”

Susie went on to earn her Master’s in Exercise Science & Health Promotion from California University of Pennsylvania, and began at Club Fit Jefferson Valley as a Group Fitness Instructor in 2009. Her personal training career began in 2010 with her appointment as Personal Training Coordinator. She took a break from Club Fit with a few other positions, including time spent at Texas A & M University, where she served as Fitness Coordinator in the campus gym and as Lecturer in the Health & Kinesiology Department. Lucky for us, she’s back at Club Fit!

“I’m not a salesperson, and I don’t hire salespeople,” says Susie, who is a Certified Exercise Physiologist (ACSM) and a Performance Enhancement Specialist (NASM). “All I know is that fitness is good for you, and I want to make sure everyone is here for the right reasons. I want to improve our members’ well being and quality of life.” That explains Susie’s focus on staff, and their development and growth. She also emphasizes that she does not want any of her staff members to focus on one demographic group. “I want the Club Fit Trainers to be in a position to help everyone, at every age and ability level.” In order to do this, Susie has been putting an emphasis on education and certifications.

Since Susie started, the Personal Training staff has taken an important step in differentiating itself from other health club trainers – Smart Fitness certification. The program was rolled out at Club Fit in January 2015, and in six months, every trainer had successfully completed the program. “It sets us apart from the competition because the training equips the trainer with a baseline knowledge that qualifies them to work with and handle certain medical conditions if a doctor suggests a client begin a fitness regimen,” says Susie. The program also helped put our veteran trainers and the new hires on the same level. For more information on each of our Personal Trainers, click here.

Club Fit is also partnering with CUNY Lehman and Mercy College, with students interning in our Fitness Center. Susie and Club Fit Briarcliff General Manager Mark Cuatt have also been guest lecturing at Mercy College. “It’s a growing relationship, in a growing field,” says Susie.

Susie is also working to create more options for members within the Fitness Center. “Ideally, we can offer a variety of different small group programs at different price points,” she says. “But almost all of our Fit Coaches are now certified Personal Trainers, so you are getting the biggest bang for your buck no matter what you do!”

For more information on Club Fit’s Fitness programming and Personal Training packages, contact Susie at sreiner@clubfit.com, or 914-250-2795. And begin to make the most of your workout time!

On my toes! My Barre class experience.

Jenn and me posing for instructor Leslie after our awesome Barre class workout.

Ugh, winter; am I right? The excitement of the holiday season has faded, and now it’s just….cold. REALLY, REALLY, REALLY COLD. How can we stay active and committed to our fitness routine, when our hibernation instincts are screaming “Blankets! Hot cocoa! Netflix!”?

I decided to shake the winter blues by shaking things up at the gym.  Despite knowing that I shouldn’t do the same thing all the time, I found myself mentally checking out and, well…doing the same thing all the time. Working out had become a little bit of a chore. To combat the monotony, I decided to try a Barre class that I’d had one eye on for some time. Maybe, in the back of my mind, I was saving it for Cabin Fever Season, but I shouldn’t have waited so long.  It was an incredible workout!  The movements are small and very controlled, but they are intense, and they work more muscles than an average workout. I really did use muscles that I had forgotten I had. The best part is, I got Jenn to join me, and we had a blast! (I’ll admit, it’s a little boost to watch your personal trainer sweat just as hard as you.)

For those of you who have taken ballet (or even Pilates) at any point in your lives, Barre class will feel familiar, but not like a repeat. If you’ve never taken ballet before, Barre is a great way to have fun and strengthen a lot of supporting muscles, especially your core, and it’s great for your posture. But if you want to just pretend to be a ballerina, that’s okay too. It’s a great way to shake things up, any time of year.

Every Superhero Needs a Sidekick.

Squat rows are my new favorite. Thanks, Susie!

If you’ve been reading along with my blog posts, you are well aware by now that I am a devotee of group exercise classes.  I enjoy the group mentality, the social energy, the instructor’s availability to answer questions, and the need to be on time, all of which are motivating to me.  But if I hit traffic on the way to the gym and missed the first part of a class, I felt lost.  With the whole gym available to me, all felt confident in was plugging into my workout playlist and power walking on my favorite treadmill for a while.  One day, I came to a stunning realization: I had absolutely no idea how to structure my solo workout time.

I was relying on classes because it was a built-in workout that I could just step into. This is a great thing, don’t get me wrong, but I knew that in order to make permanent changes, I needed to be proactive and learn how to make the most of my workout time on my own.  I thought about it for a while, and decided to invest in a series of personal training sessions.  Enter Susie; my amazing, energetic, supportive, intelligent Superhero Sidekick who’s here to coach me on to fitness glory!!

Susie takes me through great workouts that are tailored just for me, and I feel so energized afterwards.  Those hulking weight machines that intimidated me before are my friends now.  Instead of wondering if they’re torture devices, I’m setting them up for squat rows and tricep pushdowns.  Being able to work out on my own makes me feel like I have more time to do it – instead of racing to get to a class on time, I can squeeze in 30 minutes here or an hour there.

Working with a personal trainer is a big deal for me.  It’s an investment that I’ve had to make a few personal budget cutbacks to afford, but even after only two sessions I know what this is the best investment I’ve ever made in myself.    I know this will be the support that I needed to help me make permanent changes in my health and fitness, and I can’t wait for my next session!

Working the Circuit

Thanks to Ty at JV for helping me work through The Circuit, and catching this glamour shot of me on the seated row.

For anyone who hasn’t experienced The Circuit, I highly recommend it!  It’s a succession of 9 carefully coordinated exercises that are geared toward all of your major muscle groups, and it’s really easy to use.  I really like being able to shoot in and out of The Circuit when I’m short on time, and I don’t have 30 minutes to devote to TRX or an hour to devote to my beloved Body Pump.  It lets me get in some strength training quickly and efficiently, and being able to add weight as you get stronger is so rewarding.

My favorite part of The Circuit is that you get a fitness professional with you every time.  Ty helped me out this morning at JV, and I’m so glad he was with me. He adjusted all the seats and handles and levers so much faster than I could, and also kept an eye on my form, quick to guide me in the right direction to get the most out of my exercise.  He also asked me a really great question while we were chatting about this blog. He asked, “How do you think this blog helps people?”

I told Ty about the day before I started on my fitness journey, having been so ill for so long and bedridden a few times, thinking “After all this, how could I possibly become a fit person again?”  I thought that maybe it just wasn’t in the cards for me, or that I would never get to a point where I could consider myself “fit”, or “in good shape”, or that the journey would be so long and hard that it might not be worth trying for.  Fortunately, those fears were shattered for me in my first week at Club Fit, but for some individuals, those fears still exist.  I hope that by documenting my experiences and my measurable progress (however small it may be), and sharing it all with the Club Fit community through the blog, that I might inspire someone who shares my former fears to take one step forward and give it a try.  So if this blog has inspired you in any way, let me know in the comments below, and let’s show the world together that progress in fitness is not only attainable – but fun!

The Circuit is clearly marked. Super helpful!

When you get a chance to try out The Circuit, stop by one of the fitness desks and ask for help getting started. You won’t regret it.

Never Giving Up

An Article by Lindsay Calleran


Every once in a while we hear a story that touches our hearts. The strength of an individual can be an empowering experience. Ryan Dowd is one of those people who can brighten your day with a smile or motivate you in a spin class. He has an all around positive attitude that makes you feel good. His story is a testament to his character.

Click here to read the article and view the photos by Lindsay Calleran!
(This picture is also a testament to his character) Thanks for being awesome Ryan!

Superhero Transformation, Part 9: Body Pump

We all know how I feel about strength training, and about how much I’ve fallen in love with TRX, because it’s not the boring “eat-your-spinach” kind of exercise.  However, I realized that as much as I love TRX, I was going to need to try another new strength training exercise, because it’s not great to do the same thing all the time.  With that in mind, I decided to try a Body Pump class.

Before I took the class, I googled “Les Mills Body Pump” to learn more about it.  I found their website, where they have a series of training videos to help you learn the moves for the workout, which gave me a good idea of what I was getting into.  It’s basically a barbell workout set to music that works out all of your major muscle groups through a choreographed series of exercises.  A Body Pump class is always the same from start to finish, which means you can jump into any class, anywhere, and already know what you’re doing.  I felt confident that this was something I could take on in a group setting with instructor support, so I popped into a class.

Before class began, our instructor (Ann) spotted me as a new face and came over to give me the full rundown of how class works, what equipment I need, and what to be careful of.  I really appreciated her keeping an eye on me during class and giving me corrections, especially since we were working with barbells (the most frightening of all exercise equipment, in my opinion!)  I started with very light weights on my barbell, just to get used to the movement (I added more weight the next time, when I took my second class.)  It was a challenge, but I was able to handle it well, and it felt great!  The music was motivating, and the class seemed to move really quickly.  Even after only two classes, I can already see and feel a difference in the shape of my arms and legs, and I had so much fun doing it!  I’m looking forward to incorporating Body Pump into my workout routine on a regular basis.

Superhero Transformation, Part 1: Out of the Desert

Hi, Club Fitters! My name is Kendra, and I’m so glad to have been invited to share my fitness journey with you on the Club Fit blog. In many ways, I feel like I’m starting from square one – emerging from what I think of as a fitness desert. I’ll get right to it: for the past two years, I have struggled with major health issues, originally stemming from benign uterine fibroid tumors, and ending with a shocking diagnosis of a very rare uterine cancer. I endured multiple surgeries, lengthy hospital stays, severe pain, and even blood transfusions. I’m so glad to say that I’ve come through it, my strength is back, and I have more determination than ever to get (and stay) fit and healthy. I will call this journey my Superhero Transformation, because in my opinion, a superhero isn’t a smaller clothing size, or a shorter running time. A superhero knows that their personal best is being at their healthiest: preventing disease and health problems, and being ready to fight hard should it unexpectedly cross their path.

Here’s the problem: I have always hated “the gym.” The thought of getting on an elliptical machine for an hour and feeling like a hamster on a wheel truly makes me want to cry. Lucky for me (and for all of us), Club Fit is so much more. When I first took my tour, it was abundantly clear that Club Fit was not “the gym”, and that there isn’t just something for everyone; there’s plenty for everyone, no matter what your fitness interests are.

Somewhat overwhelmed with my options, I craved something familiar, and armed with my residual Olympic inspiration, I decided to hit the lap pool. I stuck to 30 minutes and took it pretty easy, but it felt so good! Supported by floating, and working through the water’s natural resistance helped me reawaken my muscles and feel totally invigorated. Just writing this now makes me want to dive back in! And I certainly will, but not before I try out some other new things and report back to all of you with another Superhero update.

Club Fit’s HP 30 The Fast, Focused, & Effective WorkOut!

This week at Club Fit Jefferson Valley we launched HP 30, a new high intensity workout that lasts 30 minutes. From the moment you start to the very end of the 30 minutes you’re engaged physically and mentally through instruction and focused physical challenges that accelerate the overall conditioning process.

The tempo is very similar to what you would experience at any elite level of sports during team and individual practices. Top level coaches carefully plan out their practices to eliminate any extended periods of downtime, by moving from one drill to the next through a designed flow that compliments an overall training objective. For example, HP 30 classes are designed to focus on agility, coordination, & strength with a byproduct benefit of improved balance and stamina. Therefore a typical class will focus on many different types of multi-directional movements, paired with added hand/eye challenges and dynamic strength training. This prepares you for not only any type of athletic endeavor you may choose, it’s also an excellent way to get into top condition.

You may read or hear that high intensity training is the new rage. When in fact it has always existed and been used by athletes to get optimum performance results. Interval training has existed for years in the sports of running, swimming, biking, and overall athletic conditioning. But unlike most workouts on the market today each workout is more effective if it’s designed with a purpose. HP 30’s goal is to improve your movement skills, coordination, and to get fast and effective results while saving you time.

To learn more about High Intensity Training and it’s benefits take a look at this NY Times video. Or come join us and try one class for free, call my office at 914 245-6993.

http://video.nytimes.com/video/2012/05/10/health/100000001515630/the-20-minute-workout.html?emc=eta1