The BodyFitz DIFFERENCE, Compare us to Others!

“The BodyFitz Difference”

Let’s be honest. There are a lot of gyms out there. There are thousands of personal trainers and hundreds of new types of workouts promising to change your life. Everywhere you look there is a person or establishment marketing to you about ways to improve your physical health. In a world so inundated with options, how do you choose?

I encourage you to keep one very important factor in mind when making decisions about your physical well being. Your health is not a fad. It is not something that can afford to come and go. It is not something you want to change with the times and it most certainly cannot be based on what is currently popular or trendy. We are different in the way think about you!

Our health is our most important asset. Our health can determine how we feel when we wake up in the morning.  Our health can determine our productivity level in our personal and professional life.  Whether we exist with pain and discomfort, or live a youthful and spirited life can also be determined by or health.   With stakes this high, can we afford to follow fads and flashy advertisements?  Absolutely not! The Bodyfitz Difference is what you need!

This is where the BodyFitz Difference becomes so important. Our trainers and programs have never, and will never be, based on a trend. As a team, we strive to create the most well-educated, talented, and diverse group of trainers possible. Each person on our staff believes that we are never finished learning about the human body, its functions, and its capabilities. In the majority of large scale gyms, once a trainer has their basic certification, that is the only requirement to work in the building. However, in the words of Benjamin Franklin, “Without continual growth and progress, such words as improvement, achievement and success have no meaning.” At BodyFitz, we believe we should be improving our knowledge base and our training skills continually and this is a requirement for every trainer. As a result they are, constantly seeking higher education, additional certifications, as well as mentoring and learning from one another. This mindset has led me to trainers with certifications in corrective exercise, degrees in exercise physiology and psychology, doctoral students with multiple degrees in exercise science, and a uniquely motivated group of people!

In addition to having the most conscientious and educated staff possible, we distinguish ourselves by learning more about our clients health and wellness needs than the average gym. Our staff believes in pre-assessing each individual client using functional movement screens, mobility and range of motion tests, and other assessments designed to detect faults in movement patterns and stability. We help you correct basic functional imbalances and develop muscular symmetry that will help keep your spine correctly aligned and all of your joints protected. These modalities provide our clients a lifetime of exercise and recreation devoid of injury and pain. Any trainer can make you sweat; our trainers will create an individualized program that will improve your quality of life.

We are thinking about your Fitness, your Health and Well Being.

Our health is a life-long investment. Just as you would not trust an amateur to manage your financial and personal assets, you cannot make the mistake of trusting minimally certified trainers who are more interested in generating sales than in your health. Our passion is fitness. Our desire is to show clients how to find optimal health. Our mission is to better our lives and yours every day. We want to see you grow, change, and improve for years to come. Let us show you the BodyFitz Difference!

Live Smarter. Train Better. BodyFitz.

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Who Will You Trust Your Fitness With?

Who should you trust with your fitness?

I am consistently being asked about this “new place” or that “new system.”  The fitness industry is an ever growing, ever-changing world filled with an interesting combination of people.  Some professionals  are truly concerned with improving  your well-being and helping you live your best life.  However, we must be mindful because there are others who are simply looking to capitalize on individuals with limited knowledge seeking help with improving their health.

One of our senior clients recently left an article on my desk detailing the opening of a new fitness business in Atlanta.  It is a franchise, and they are seeking to open a minimum of four locations in and around our area.  The article first discusses the owners of this business being in the automotive industry for the past 31 years.  This immediately caught my attention.  Would you put your health in the hands of someone who had 31 years worth of knowledge about the auto-body business rather than the human body business?  Their new found interest in opening a gym franchise was not a desire to see change in the health of people in our area, or a passion for physical fitness and living a healthy lifestyle.  It is stated simply that they were seeking a new opportunity and a good business model outside of the field they were currently working in.  At no point does the article mention any of the proprietors having an education in the field of physical fitness, or any personal experience working in this arena.

The premise of this “gym,” or gym-like facility rather, is that the busy working adult can achieve improved physical health in less time, spending less money than in a traditional program, using their new system.  They boldly advertise that all a person needs is two 20 minute workouts per week in order to become their best self.  Both on the website and in the article they proudly state that this is not a gimmick or a fad.  Promising the same type of results for any individual of any age, no matter their current fitness level, is the definition of a gimmick in my opinion.  In addition, your progress and program are not determined by a certified personal trainer, but rather by an “amazing” new computer program.  Yes, a computer program decides if you have worked hard enough and completed appropriate exercises in order to achieve maximum results.

The owners take on other fitness businesses by stating that “Atlanta personal trainers cost between $600 and $1,000 (false!)a month, but we are a third of that.”  Clearly the cost will be less!  You are being monitored by computers and you are only in the facility 40 minutes per week.  Less than one hour of exercise in a seven day period!  They say that you will always be with a “personal trainer,”  but what is that individual really doing if the machine is responsible for determining your results?

This brings me to the next piece of this program that frightens me.  Machines.  The gym, though I hesitate to give it this definition, is made up of only machines.  There are no dumbbells or free weights of any kind.  There is not a kettle bell, a bosu, a piece of stability equipment, and certainly no Purmotion system.  There is not one piece of equipment designed to dynamically train the body or focus on functional movements that will improve the longevity of your joints and your range of motion.  Your body will quickly adapt to the machines, and soon change will cease to take place.  With over 648 muscles in the body that create thousands of movements, how can a few pieces of machinery possibly help you become your best self?  In a sedentary nation filled with individuals who need to get up and get moving, they are creating a program based on SITTING on machines that do not offer the opportunity for increased mobility and stability! I personally went through an introductory session there.  I sat on three different machines and did four different exercises, all while sitting!  Then I sat in my car to get home.  I needed to get up and move after that workout just to get my blood flowing!

This type of system also offers very little individualization.  What experience, capabilities or tools will be made available to you to help relieve tension in your gluteus medius or periformis? Can they help decrease restrictions in your joints and add range of motion and or mobility through soft tissue manipulations or corrective exercise modalities? With this limited equipment, how can the program help those who are experiencing chronic pain or injury, or help older clients looking to improve mobility?

The very premise of this program and others like it takes advantage of our society’s need to “dumb it down” in our conversations about health.  If it is supposedly simple and easy, then society loves it, thrives on it!  However,  fitness, health and nutrition are not so simple, other than to say everyone needs it!  There are many modalities, programs and nuances that take years of experience to understand.  I will spend all the time I need to get each person (client or trainer) to understand the importance  of being mobile, of working on strength through the proper range of motion, and on the ultimate result… balance!

When it comes to our health, we have to make more informed decisions.  We must take responsibility for our fitness and realize that if something seems too good to be true, it probably is!  Improving your well-being does not have to be intimidating or overwhelming.  If you are seeking knowledge on how to help yourself achieve personal goals, lose weight, deal with pain or an injury, check out our website, and or call us.  BodyFitz has been providing the Atlanta area with highly educated, certified professionals whose life’s passions are not to build a franchise, but to improve the quality of life for each individual we serve!  Our credentials speak for themselves; no matter your current fitness level, we have a trainer who can meet your needs with an individualized program, created for you and only you!  Our purpose is to create an environment where our clients are given the most current, applicable, beneficial knowledge, and programming for creating a change in themselves that will last a lifetime.

Who can you trust with your fitness?

Dan FitzSimons & your BodyFitz Team

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Martial Fitness Camps for Children, Summer 2014

CBS reporter Rebekka Schramm visited BodyFitz & The Welch Martial Art Experience today!  Sule, owner of the The Welch Martial Art Experience is offering summer camps for children to experience 5 styles of Martial Arts and Martial Fitness as well as multiple classes for children and adults all year long! http://www.cbs46.com/story/25678344/sandy-springs-studio-offering-summer-martial-art-camps-for-undecided-beginners

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The Benefits of Strength Training

 

There is no denying the benefits of strength training at any age, particularly in older adults. Numerous studies abound confirming strength training not only has positive effects on a person’s metabolism andlean muscle mass, but also can help alleviate, or even reverse, debilitating health conditions such as depression, arthritis, osteoporosis, obesity and back pain.

According to Brian Housle, MS, MEd, an exercise physiologist at Duke Diet & Fitness Center, evenyour heart can reap the benefits of strength training, which results in leaner body composition, and ultimately reduces your risk of heart disease.

“If you don’t use it, you lose it!” said Dan FitzSimons, owner and trainer at bodyfitz. “Strength training is crucial for fighting frailty and disability, increasing strength and mobility, and staying active and self-sufficient. Losing muscle and gaining fat are not part of our natural aging process! In fact, many symptoms of old age are really just symptoms of inactivity.”

At bodyfitz, Dan and the trainers use strength training as a weapon against aging and frailty, which is often associated with health conditions such as cancer, heart disease, and also can lead to falls, the number one cause of injury related deaths in people age 65 and older. According to researchers at Duke, by strength training just two to three times a week, a person can lower their risk of falls by 40 percent.

“Strength training is an effective way to increase muscle strength, shed unwanted inches and become more toned,” Dan noted. “Additionally, your tendons, ligaments and bones also will be strengthened. Stronger joints are more stable and less prone to injury.”

Dan tailors his clients’ strength training workouts to meet their individual needs. “We take each person as an individual, assess their strengths and weaknesses and identify their fitness goals. Each client is unique, no matter what their age.”

Although it is suggested that people strength train two times a week for a minimum of 30 minutes, he prefers that his clients workout for a minimum of three times a week to ensure that they see progress. And, he says that as people get stronger, they will need to add weight to their exercises to improve.

Specific exercises that Dan might include in an older client’s workout include step-ups, which incorporate the use of a box or platform at least seven inches high, and are a great way to work on balance and coordination.

“Working the leg muscles while performing an everyday movement and carrying weights will increase a person’s strength, balance and confidence,” Dan noted. “I also use exercises such as squats to a chairwhile holding objects, rotational movements with a medicine ball to increase core strength and body awareness, and tossing and catching a medicine ball to work on a client’s reaction time and hand/eye coordination. I like keeping my older adult clients on their feet, on unstable surfaces, and if they need to sit for an exercise, they will sit on a stability ball.”

Dan also uses dynamic exercises for natural body movement that allows muscles, ligaments and tendons to work through a full range of motion. “We like to use an exercise called ‘swivel hips,’ which is like walking on a tight rope but on the floor. I ask my clients to step across the midline to help their muscles remain flexible and agile. They also are working on transferring body weight without losing balance.”

Consistent strength training, Dan says, especially that which focuses on strength and conditioning drills, can not only help us extend our lives, but help make those extended years quality ones.

“Beginning at around age 40, we lose about a half a pound of muscle each year, and that muscle is often replaced with fat,” Dan said. “Strength training can counteract age-related muscle loss, help keep your weight down and make you feel and look years younger. It also can help reduce arthritis pain, especially in the knees and back.”

While anyone at any age can begin a strength training program, Dan emphasizes that it is important they take certain precautions. “Be smart, start out slow, and get a trainer! It is important to interview a few trainers and find one with strong credentials and education that will suit your personal needs.”

“Understanding the importance of starting out slow, using moderate weights for low repetitions and listening to your body is crucial in avoiding injuries and building muscles. When someone is just starting out, it is so important to know that you are ‘conditioning’ your body with each workout so that you can progress to heavier weights and more repetitions, as well as a better range of motion over time. Too much, too fast will result in an injury to your ligaments and/or tendons and sideline you for a while,causing much frustration!”

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Relief for sore legs with the foam roller

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Adding Function to Fitness

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Functional Fitness for You!

What do Olympic athletes have in common with exercise beginners?  These two groups – as well as everyone in between – can reap the benefits from a type of exercise that will not only help them excel at their designated activities, but enable them to perform functions of daily living more easily and safely.

Whether you are a gym regular, a weekend warrior, or are completely new to exercise, functional fitness is for you.  At the most basic level, functional fitness can help someone more easily stand up from the couch.  At its most extreme, functional fitness can help Olympic athletes bring home the gold medal.

“For some, functional training may involve movements in strength that enhance a person’s ability to perform daily activities.  Or, it may be used to improve an athlete’s performance in their designated sport, or even to build a better relationship between the nervous system and the muscular system,” said Dan FitzSimons, owner and trainer of BodyFitz Personal Training.  “No matter how you define it, functional training is an important part of exercise and should be included into a person’s routine.”

According to Dan, functional fitness is not a new concept; neither are other types of training such as core training or interval training.

“BodyFitz has been incorporating these necessary exercise components into our clients’ workouts for years,” he said.  “We love all types of training, especially all of the reasons why a person should train.”

The newest component at BodyFitz that will help enhance a person’s functional training routine is the Purmotion Functional Training System (FTS), which enables Dan and his team of trainers to bring functional fitness to a whole new level. “The Purmotion FTS is a great addition to our arsenal of functional training weapons,” Dan explained.  “The accompanying fitness tools provide us with a huge array of exercises that have our clients performing compounded moves that will help them develop as an athlete, a homemaker, a weekend warrior, or simply just help them to move around more easily.”

Dan noted that the Purmotion FTS is the foundation and framing for enhancing the overall function and performance for ANYONE who uses it.

“BodyFitz trainers are extremely knowledgeable, motivated and enthusiastic about their jobs and our equipment.  Because of this extensive knowledge, we are able to train anyone who is interested in developing a healthier lifestyle,” Dan said.  “Our functional training tools have many applications in real life, like working with children to develop gross motor skills, to someone who wants to increase their core and overall strength, to elite athletes who want to achieve performance goals.  These tools also help individuals who simply just need help getting up and down stairs, in and out of the car or to simply live a better quality of life.”

Purmotion is a company that cares as much about individuals being able to achieve healthier lifestyles as BodyFitz, according to Dan.  “We have seen a real need for functional training in our lives and have gone above and beyond to fulfill that need with our clients.  Our ability to understand this philosophy, absorb the knowledge and develop the skills required to perform on this equipment will have a direct impact on our clients.

“Functional training has always been a big part of our foundation, but it just received a major makeover.  As one of our clients said, ‘People come here for all of the right reasons.’”

For more information about functional fitness or to schedule an appointment to see how a functional fitness program can work for you, call BodyFitz at (404) 255-4008 or visit www.bodyfitz.com.

 

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How to Workout Inner Thigh

Prevent Knee Injury, Increase Athletic Performance and Stability with this workout for the Inner Thigh

Dan FitzSimons presents an exercise that will help Prevent Knee Injury, increase Athletic Performance, and Stability by targeting the muscles from the groin, down the thigh and across the knee joint.

Chris and I are going to demonstrate an exercise that is phenomenal for strengthening the knee and knee joint. We want to strengthen the inner thigh. Those are called adductors. They add to the midline. So, when you work on the inner thigh, there’s a lot of machines out there that you sit down in.

When you sit down in the machine, your knee is usually bent or straight, but the pressure’s here above the knee. So, we’re not strengthening the muscle across the joint. It’s very important that we train the muscles across the joint so that we can work on stability.

Demonstrate the problem with seated inner thigh machines

The difference between seated and standing abductor workouts

Now, we’re going to work on stability on both sides.

As Chris stands strong on this right leg, he’s going to work on the stability of that leg. As we hook up this cable attachment to his ankle, we’re going to work on the inner thigh strength across the knee and up into the groin. He’s going to pull this toe up to help protect the knee and keep this knee locked.

We’re going to bring this heel across in front of the other toe. Come out slow to where it’s comfortable so you feel the stretch, exhale, pull back across. Always up nice and tall. His chin is up. He’s working on his posture. There’s no way you can do this exercise without engaging your core. But again, both legs are working solidly because he has to have all the pressure on his right glut, hamstring and quad, stabilizing the ankle on the block and the reason why we are on this block is so that he doesn’t have to hike up his hip to drag his foot past the other foot, so now he can be in a more stable or neutral position with the hip as he pulls across.

So again, these muscles coming from the groin across the knee joint are going to get stronger, which is going to help you prevent injury, be more efficient as a runner, and perform better. Simple as that.

So, here we have Maria doing the same exercise, we just want to demonstrate with the male and female that we’re doing the same exercises.

Women are not going to get big and bulky by doing strength training workouts. Bulk comes from what? It comes from muscle covered by fat. Right. So, if we watch what we eat and we exercise properly, we get nice, defined muscles, nice toned muscles, and there’s no fat over them, so we don’t get bulky.

But as Maria runs 45 miles a week if she’s not strengthening the inner and outer thighs they will get worn out, they will get tired. She will suffer some form of knee injury, especially tendinitis or maybe IT band syndrome, but this strengthening of the inner thigh is going to allow her to perform and function at a much higher level.

Let’s get two more reps. nice and tall, again working the stabilization on the leg as she’s standing up.

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Sore calf muscle? Tight achillies tendon? Foam roller

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The Choice is Yours: Fitness Center or Fast Food Joint?

It is true that you cannot “out work a bad diet.”  You also cannot eat junk food today because you will work it off tomorrow at the gym. In fact, you are much more likely to achieve your goal of a flatter stomach by eating healthier than by doing any amount of crunches.

At bodyfitz, we strive to keep our clients in shape – not just through exercise, but by keeping them informed of the importance of eating well as a way of life, not just for the purpose of “going on a diet.”  If the majority of our decisions were based on how they would affect our health, we would live a higher quality of life for many years to come.  That is why, at our fitness center, we want to help more people make better decisions so that they can achieve a better quality of life well into their retirement years.

This also is why, at bodyfitz, we do not have a snack bar, a juice bar or a smoothie bar.  Tempting you with “crap” calories and artificial ingredients will result in defeating your hard work spent exercising.  You workout to feel better, to look better and to live a longer, healthier life; what you put in your mouth does matter greatly!

 

We at bodyfitz wish you the best and hope that you are making better choices in exercise and in food choices!

 

Try this recipe at home:

Breakfast Frittata

  • 1/2 diced red onion
  • big handful of shiitake mushrooms
  • 1/2 large organic red pepper (on the dirty dozen list)
  • 1 diced tomato
  • about 1/4 cup grated fresh parmesan
  • 6 whole eggs + 2 egg whites
  • 1/2 cup grated gruyere cheese
  • salt and pepper
  • extra virgin olive oil

Heat 1 – 2 tablespoons of olive oil in nonstick oven proof skillet. Add onion and red pepper and saute for a few minutes until onions and peppers begin to soften over medium heat. Turn oven to broil. Add mushrooms and saute for a few more minutes and then add tomatoes to heat through. Add salt and pepper to taste. Meanwhile, mix all eggs with grated parmesan and a pinch of salt and pepper. Pour egg mixture over vegetables and cook 3 – 4 minutes until mixture begins to set. Sprinkle gruyere cheese on top and transfer to oven (middle shelf) until the cheese melts and top sets.  Enjoy with fruit, low-sugar cereal or oatmeal!

 

Just as important as the foods you eat on a daily basis are the foods you consume before and after your workouts.  To help you identify the foods that your body needs to get through a rigorous exercise routine, and then to help it recover, we have listed below some of the foods we choose.

It is important to note that the foods you eat before working out should give you energy to sustain the intensity and longevity of the workout.  Post-workout foods also are important, as your muscles will be hungry, and hopefully, after an intense strength training workout, followed by some cardio exercise, your glycogen stores are low.  A good post-workout meal – eaten within an hour of your workout – is essential for your body’s recovery and for preparing for the next workout.

 

Pre-workout meal ideas:

  • Plain Greek yogurt with berries and sprinkled with granola
  • Cottage cheese topped with grapes and some oatmeal
  • Eggs, high-fiber cereal topped with berries

Post-workout meal ideas:

  • Frittata with vegetables
  • Hard-boiled eggs, oatmeal or high-fiber cereal
  • Piece of salmon with dark leafy green salad

When you get your body into the habit of eating healthy, junk food becomes less and less appealing.  What’s more is that very rarely, if ever, do we ever feel good about ourselves for eating sweets.  After all, when is the last time you thanked yourself for eating that cookie?

 

A healthy relationship with food should be nonnegotiable!

 

(404) 255-4008 | 220 Sandy Springs Circle, Sandy Springs, GA 30328 | www.bodyfitz.com |

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An Overview of Knee Pain

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As we age, knee pain becomes a common complaint among many individuals. One of the most common causes of knee pain is chondromalacia patellae, a condition that causes the cartilage under the kneecap to soften, according to Jennifer Hootman, Ph.D, Centers for Disease Control. Symptoms of this common type of knee pain may improve or even disappear with eight to 10 weeks of strengthening exercises.

Though there are a number of preventative measures that can help alleviate the pain, perhaps themost effective way is simply to maintain a healthy weight. For every extra pound a person adds to their frame, they add an extra four pounds of pressure on their knees when they walk or take the stairs. When they shed that weight, their knee pain not only can improve, but may diminish altogether.

Bodyfitz trainer Heath Belue believes that people need to remain as active as possible, as increasing muscle strength can lead to decreasing knee pain. “Having aches is no excuse for being a couch potato. They will only get worse.”

According to Heath, there are several different factors that can contribute to knee pain. Age is one factor, and others include lifestyle, prior or current injury or genetics. Normally, people begin to feel joint pain when life starts to slow down with age or retirement. Around age 50 or 60 is a common time period when sedentary people begin to experience knee and joint pain. Arthritis also has a big impact around this time of life.

Heath believes that, without a doubt, exercise may help delay or even prevent some of the most common knee issues. “A lack of strength in the muscles surrounding the knee is one of the biggest problems that can result from a sedentary lifestyle. Strong leg muscles take pressure off of the knee joint and can help relieve or prevent knee pain.”

Although everyone’s knee problems are different, Heath begins working with his clients who suffer from knee pain with the standard evaluation that he has learned from first-hand experience while working with orthopedic physicians and physical therapists.

“This evaluation helps me to determine what a client can and cannot do when exercising,” Heath explained. “It basically is a checklist of questions that help me to know what is happening with the client’s knee. I also check my client’s physical appearance for swelling around the knee, and determine if they are overweight. I also check their knee and body alignment and assess their posture.”

Heath said that all of the client’s answers to his questions build upon each other and help him create an exercise program that will benefit them, though in some cases of extreme pain, he may refer them to a physician.

He also asks the client to perform a series of movements to determine how strong their knee is, or whether there is an issue with the ligament or hamstring to quadriceps strength ratio. Heath also checks knee balance and stability. From this evaluation, he designs a workout, pulling knowledge from his more than 17 years of experience as an exercise physiologist, athlete and personal trainer to develop a program that will help his clients strengthen their knees and entire body.

“Though there may be some limitations in place, people can have healthy knees through smart training,” Heath explained. “Through my education and training experience, I know that individuals can improve their quality of life through corrective exercises. Knowing the limitations and capabilities of my clients plays a major role in smarter training and prevention of knee pain.”

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Daily Inspiration

Strength does not come from physical capacity. It comes from an indomitable will. — Mahatma Gandhi

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Get to Know Fitz

At BodyFitz, Dan and his wife, Tracy, have created an airy, open, neighborhood facility offering a highly-qualified and friendly team of trainers and all the equipment and classes you’ll need to get in shape. The FitzSimons have built their business and their reputation over 14 years of providing a place and a program for the people of Sandy Springs and north Atlanta who want a serious workout in an atmosphere of serious fun!