Category Archives: wellbeing

YOU AND YOUR TRAINER: IT’S A WIN WIN PARTNERSHIP

traintwo  This week on the blog, instead of writing about fitness and fashion, I feel compelled to write about fitness and how it relates to me personally. In sharing this with you it is my hope that you will see exercise and your relationship with your trainer as so much more than just a means to getting into a pair of pants or ready for a family reunion.

Life is not always sunshine and roses – you know that. A lifetime of ups and downs can sometimes leave you feeling beaten up and , sad and maybe like you have no sense of control. I know this has been the case for me, but as far as I can look back the one thing that has kept me from giving up has been exercise.   In all seriousness, no matter what the crisis was, working out has always made me a stronger person physically and mentally and I always felt better after a workout. I felt so adamant about this that I was always encouraging friends, relatives etc. to use exercise as a tool to not only look better but to feel better.   It eventually became clear to me that this was the career for me and frankly, I’m very good at what I do…. because I BELIEVE in what I do. As a trainer I want the best for my clients, I want them to succeed. I leave them feeling great and am happy for them ; high-fives all around! If they are having a bad day, working out with me will be a bright spot because they did something good for themselves and for that hour were in control of their life. When life is chaotic, that bit of control can be just enough to help someone get through the day. In fact, I believe in the exercise-client-trainer relationship so much I hired my own trainer. When I am finished working out with my trainer I feel accomplished, happy and….sweaty!!! All good things! And one of the best realizations is that There is a bond between trainer and client. Each person wants to do the best for the other. An inner strength can pop out of nowhere because you want to do your best and succeed, and that goes for both parties. Working out brings confidence and confidence can get you through a bevy of stressful situations, as I know all too well.

Time to get a little personal, and I’m not doing this to generate sympathy, I’m sharing this because my workouts, my trainer and that little slice of control has been THE thing that has helped me to keep my head up. This year has left me with 2 deceased dogs, a loss of a home and, oh yeah, a soon to be ex- husband….he somehow landed at the end of this sentence (wink wink) . I never saw this coming and there were many times I thought “How can I even work and encourage and be enthusiastic for my clients? How can I function without knowing where I will live and what will become of my life?” The truth is that my clients were the reason I got through it! My clients were my biggest supporters who made me feel important and worthy – I was helping them and that in turn helped me. And the decision to move my body every day, even when I didn’t want to get out of bed, helped me to make sense of what was happening. I was able to see the bigger picture. I took my tired self and started hiking again and getting stronger. A fire was lit and I made it work. I can thank my trainer and my clients for that (and of course my wonderful friends and colleagues). This is a work in progress, but I know for a fact that exercise will keep me on the right track. We have all faced adversity and will continue to do so, but the moral of this story is that if you believe in yourself and your abilities, you will be able to conquer the obstacles and that the best medicine is to take care of yourself by moving your body every single day. When you have a trainer in your corner you know that there is always going to be someone who does believe in you. When life is hitting you hard don’t run in the other direction, instead run through the obstacles! Keep moving and your head will clear and you will be able to make decisions. Speaking of running, we will talk sports bras soon !! HA And don’t forget to high-five your trainer!!!

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New Study Shows The Benefits Of Working With A Personal Trainer

20150625_151816  Over the course of my career in fitness, it has become obvious to me the benefits that come from using a personal trainer, especially when it is combined with a proper nutrition plan. Clients lose fat, look better, feel healthier and have increased energy. As you can see from testimonials page, my clients also see that benefit.

While I see these benefits on a daily basis when working with clients, a recent study conducted by supplementcritique.com to gauge consumer perceptions of personal fitness trainers reinforces that. The study found that an overwhelming number of people are satisfied with their experience when they worked with a personal trainer. The survey, conducted in the United States, targeted consumers that currently workout at least three times a week.

Key Takeaways:

  •  83% of people that have used a personal trainer were satisfied with the results.
  •   Experience is the most important factor people consider when choosing a personal trainer, with 35% of respondents stating this was their most important consideration

Satisfied Customers

Of those surveyed, 56% of respondents who exercised three times or more per week stated that they had used the services of a personal trainer in the past. Of those that had used the services of a personal trainer as part of their workout regime, a whopping 83% were satisfied with the results, underlining the value that personal trainers bring to those looking to achieve their fitness goals.

1  Of those respondents that had not used a personal trainer in the past, there was a clear understanding of the benefit of using a personal trainer as evidenced by the fact that 68% of respondents believed that working with a personal trainer would help them reach their fitness goals.

Experience Matters

Consumers were asked what the most important factors they would consider when hiring a personal trainer. 35% of respondents said that the experience of the personal trainer was the most important factor followed by 27% of people saying that personality and likeability were most important. 26% of respondents cited cost as being the most important factor they would consider when choosing a trainer to work with.

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Education

The study asked respondents what they thought was the education level of the average personal trainer. 61% of those surveyed believed that the average personal trainer has less than a college degree. 15% believed that the average education level was high school, while 46% believed that the average personal trainer had some college. 38% believed that the average personal trainer had obtained a college degree. I found this part of the study interesting as I have a B.S in Sports Management from ASU.

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What is striking about this study is the satisfaction level that people have when they work with a personal trainer. Working with a personal trainer that you can connect with is far more likely to lead to you having success while also increasing your enjoyment level.

The study was conducted in April of 2015 in order to understand how personal trainers are perceived in the marketplace by consumers who make fitness a part of their daily lives. You can view the entire survey by clicking here.

Utilize this information to make an informed decision when hiring a personal trainer and make sure
they address your individual needs not lump you into a “program”.

Visit www.fitnesspropelled.com or simply give us a call @ 480-522-7874 with any questions on getting started with your own training program.

Fitness Hues for the Blues: Are you choosing the right colors for your workouts?

By: June-Ellen Ottoson, Trainer – Fitness Propelled, AFAA Certified

pic -1  It has been said that color affects so many of our emotions. Study after study has been done to see what colors make us hungry, what colors evoke anxiety and how they work in restaurant and home décor. The same principles apply to your fitness attire. If you are feeling drab and unmotivated, then donning some drab gear is not going to make you feel like busting out some squats with vigor…it is going to make you feel slow and not shake the mood. All black workout clothes are a popular choice because they produce a slimming effect, and black can be a powerful choice as well, but if you are only choosing that shade to make you feel slimmer you might want to add a burst of color that brightens you up. Yellow, for example, can add a little sunshine and make you feel excited about working hard. Red is a bold color and can provoke feelings of strength. Blue is strong and can boost confidence and a feeling of power. Green is a color that can make us feel calm and is a great and popular choice for yoga. A colorful headband or hat is also a good choice, even down to your shoes and water bottle!!! Amp up your workout with an amped-up attitude and some color.

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Include these 5 Functional VIPR Exercises into Your Workouts

By: Geoff Rubin, Fitness Propelled, CPT/CIFT/TRX II

Exercising options and varieties have never been more full of options. Creating new and diversified exercise programs are becoming the norm as people are consistently seeking new ways to achieve their optimum levels of fitness. With all these options, comes exploration, so in this article let’s do a quick exploration on what #ViPR training is. #ViPR (“Vitality, performance and reconditioning”) is that rare thing: a seemingly faddy piece of equipment that actually works. “With the #ViPR, every exercise can become a core exercise, a balance exercise and an agility exercise,”. #ViPR is a round looking hollowed tube with two hand grips on one side and one long hand grip on the other. There are no attachments and it allows for optimum movement sequencing.

Below are Fitness Propelleds 5 #ViPR exercises to get you excited about including #ViPR training to your exercise regimen. 3 sets for 30 seconds per exercise with a 1 minute rest per set.

Squat with ViPR through the legs

11-11-2  Holding the ViPR with a shovel grip horizontally in front of you, descend into a squat with the ViPR through your legs. Then, stand and drive the ViPR vertically upward to the start point. Repeat.

Squat into a double-forward drive

22-12-2  Holding the ViPR in a neutral grip, horizontally in front of you, descend into a full squat, lowering the ViPR to the floor. Stand up and step forward into a dynamic lunge, driving the ViPR forward on the same side. Return to standing and repeat the drive on the opposite side.

Front squat to overhead press

33-1  With a shoulder-width overhand grip, bring your elbows forward so your palms are facing upward and the ViPR is resting on your front shoulder muscles. With a neutral spine, lower yourself as if sitting in a chair behind you. Keep your elbows high as you lower until your thighs are parallel to the floor. Pause then push back up to a standing position and perform an overhead shoulder press.

Lunge with lateral rotation

44-14-2  Keeping your chest up high and back neutral, rotate your torso and then return to a upright split stance, repeating all reps on the same side before alternating legs.

Core rolling ViPR plank and press-up

55-15-25-3  Laying the ViPR on the floor vertically, place one hand on the end of the cylinder and one on the floor while in the plank position. Make sure to place the hands under the shoulders. Roll the ViPR underneath the opposite hand, hold again in the plank position for 10 seconds and then do one (super slow) press-up.

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5 Dumbbell Exercises to Shape Your Back

By: Geoff Rubin, Fitness Propelled, CPT/CIFT/TRX II

The use of #dumbbells is a fantastic way to train one’s body. Dumbbells provide us with an ease of use, open options on ranges of motion and a thorough workout. Dumbbell training puts us in positions to use our whole body and not become reliant on machines or circuit training. Using dumbbells engage the exerciser to connect with each exercise and focus on form, positioning and the development of strength. In this blog post, I share 5 dumbbell exercises that are sure to shape your “back”.

Complete 3 sets with 15 repetitions of the 5 exercises listed below with 1:00 minute rest periods between sets.

1) Bent Over Row

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  1. With a dumbbell in each hand (palms facing your torso), bend your knees slightly and bring your torso forward by bending at the waist; as you bend make sure to keep your back straight until it is almost parallel to the floor.  The weights should hang directly in front of you as your arms hang perpendicular to the floor and your torso.
  2. While keeping the torso stationary, lift the dumbbells to your side, keeping the elbows close to the body. At the top contracted position, squeeze the back muscles and hold for a second.
  3. Slowly lower the weight again to the starting position. Repeat.

2) Bent Over Rear Fly’s

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Bent Over  Rear Fly’s

  1. While keeping your back straight and maintaining the natural arch of your back, lean forward. Let the arms hang in front of you perpendicular to the ground. The palms of your hands should be facing each other and your torso should be parallel to the floor.
  2. Keeping your torso forward and stationary, and the arms straight with a slight bend at the elbows, lift the dumbbells straight to the side until both arms are parallel to the floor.
  3. After a one second contraction at the top, slowly lower the dumbbells back to the starting position. Repeat.

3) Renegade Rows

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  1. Place two dumbbells on the floor about shoulder width apart. Position yourself on your toes and your hands as though you were doing a pushup, with the body straight and extended. Use the handles of the dumbbells to support your upper body. You may need to position your feet wide for support.
  2. Push one dumbbell into the floor and row the other dumbbell, retracting the shoulder blade of the working side as you flex the elbow, pulling it to your side.
  3. Then lower the dumbbell to the floor and begin the dumbbell row in the opposite hand. Repeat.

4) Bent Over Row w/ Palm’s Up

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  1. With a dumbbell in each hand (palms facing away from your torso), bend your knees slightly and bring your torso forward by bending at the waist; as you bend make sure to keep your back straight until it is almost parallel to the floor.  The weights should hang directly in front of you as your arms hang perpendicular to the floor and your torso.
  2. While keeping the torso stationary, lift the dumbbells to your with palms facing away, keeping the elbows close to the body. At the top contracted position, squeeze the back muscles and hold for a second.
  3. Slowly lower the weight again to the starting position. Repeat.

5) Lateral Raises

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  1. With your dumbbells stand with a straight torso and the dumbbells by your side at arms length with the palms of the hand facing you.
  2. While maintaining the torso in a stationary position lift the dumbbells to your side with a slight bend on the elbow and the hands slightly tilted forward. Continue to go up until your arms are parallel to the floor.
  3. Lower the dumbbells back down slowly to the starting position. Repeat

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Sources:

– Bodybuilding.com

5 TRX Exercises for a Defined Back

By: Geoff Rubin, Fitness Propelled, CPT/CIFT/TRX II

Starting off this article by explaining what exactly is TRX would be critical before attempting its’ exercises. Born in the Navy SEALs, Suspension Training (#TRX) bodyweight exercise develops strength, balance, flexibility and core stability simultaneously.

The TRX Suspension Trainer:

  • Delivers a fast, effective total-body workout
  • Helps build a rock-solid core
  • Increases muscular endurance
  • Benefits people of all fitness levels (pro athletes to seniors)
  • Can be set-up anywhere (gym, home, hotel or outside)

By utilizing your own bodyweight, the TRX Suspension Trainer provides greater performance and functionality than large exercise machines costing thousands of dollars.

Continuing from our previous article posted, we are now checking out a multitude of pieces of equipment and how they can be applied towards creating a #DefinedBack. Check out these 5 exercises below and be sure to incorporate them into your “back” routine.

1) TRX Y Deltoid Fly:

Deltoids - 3Deltoids - 4  Builds strength and stability in the rear and middle parts of the shoulders.

2) TRX T Deltoid Fly

DSC_1051DSC_1053  Builds strength and stability in the rear shoulders and upper back.

 3) TRX L Deltoid Fly

TRX L Deltoid Fly  Strengthens external rotators with some stabilization support from the lats, biceps and forearms.

4) TRX Row

Row - 1Row - 2  Strengthens back muscles dependent on the position of a high or low row. Apply the pendulum theory and stance in order to increase exercise difficulty.

5) TRX Supine Plank

TRX Supine Plank  Increases flexibility in the anterior shoulder and builds strength and stability in the upper body.

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Sources:

https://www.trxtraining.com/suspension-training

 

Sugar, it isn’t always so sweet to your body

By: Geoff Rubin, Fitness Propelled, CPT/CIFT/TRX II

With Halloween coming quickly, I felt it relevant to share a fantastic posting through the American Council on Exercise which discusses the negative effects that “Sugar” has on ones’ body.   Who can deny our societies love for “Sugar”? Shoot, I cannot even deny my own sweet tooth cravings at times. According to the US Department of Agriculture, the average American consumes roughly 47 pounds of sugar and 35 pounds of high-fructose corn syrup per year. Wow, if I were to have guessed at how much “Sugar” I consume, my guess would have been pretty far off. With so much “Sugar” being consumed, this being simple table sugars and high-fructose corn syrup, it is important for us to understand the effects it is having on our bodies.

Let’s examine “Sugars” effects on our bodies from head to toe:

Brain: Sugar impairs memory

UCLA researchers found that fructose may actually damage memory and slow learning. Results of the studies with rats showed that sugar can affect neural connections in the brain and have a detrimental effect on these functions.

Stomach: Increases appetite

Sugar is fantastic at providing us with little more than empty calories that seem to aid us with putting on those unwanted extra pounds. Researchers are finding that the consumption of “Sugar” may trigger you to eat even more calories. This study out of Yale, found evidence suggesting that fructose may actually increase appetite by interfering with the body’s satiety hormones.

Circulatory System: Increase the risk for heart disease

New research is suggesting that sugar is having a big impact on heart health. Certain levels of sugar intake may even double the risk of heart disease. This being from the increased risk factors; being sugars effect on weight, blood pressure, triglycerides and negative impact on insulin.

Mouth: Creates a breeding ground for bacteria

Eating sugar increases the acidity in your mouth creating a perfect environment for bacteria. Increased bacteria can wreak havoc on tooth enamel and cause plaque and gingivitis that can lead to periodontal disease in not controlled.

Pancreas: Increased risk in developing diabetes

After a thorough review of over 175 countries; scientists found a direct correlation between rising levels of sugar in the food supply and rising rates of diabetes, independent of obesity rates.

Heart, Joints: Increase joint inflammation

Chronic inflammation is a contributing cause of processed sugars and other refined carbohydrates. This has been shown to have various negative effects on the body from increased risk of heart disease to muscle and joint pain.

Entire Body: Affects energy levels

Simple carbohydrates like sugar, are processed quickly and cause blood sugar to spike and inevitably crash. As blood sugar crashes so does our energy, so case in point remove yourself from simple carbs and work towards consuming more complex carbs such as whole grains.

We all realize that the transition away from “Sugar” will be a difficult journey, but may this article be a resource towards pointing you in a healthier direction, well, then that would be fantastic.

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Sources:

  • American Council on Exercise Science
  • Registered Dieticians @ Evolution Nutrition