Greenwood has Now Adopted MYZONE®!

You may have seen an exciting new addition around the club this year, MYZONE®! We used it in the 2017 Fitness Challenge, in PWRFIT classes, Combat Zone and other miscellaneous programs. Without doing a big promotion or launch, we are already seeing a positive impact with members so we have decided to go ALL IN!


One of the first things we will be doing is incorporating MYZONE® into our CVI classes. Simply stated, you will be using colors for your zones to help you reach your goals during class. Using your smartphone (which you already use for Audio Fetch) you will be able to see your colors as the instructor guides you through class, taking you from grey to blue, green, yellow and red.

Here’s a useful guide to using MYZONE® and how it will help your workout experience:

  1. Using a chest strap (belt) with monitor you are able to track your heart rate. Your heart rate is determined using a formula that will adjust with your workouts as necessary. Tracking your heart rate during a workout is a proven way to efficiently achieve your goals and with the MYZONE® belt, your effort is measured with 99.4% EKG-accuracy.
  2. You are able to view your workout using your smartphone via bluetooth in addition to on screen in PWRFIT and other areas of the club, when added.
  3. Your belt will connect to the MYZONE® app along with your other favorite fitness apps and you can upload your data to the cloud wherever you are. You can even upload data without being in the club. Your belt will store data for 16 hours if you are not able to connect to the internet.
  4. You will be able to track your workouts, set goals and analyze your data. You can even make friend connections and see other peoples workouts to keep you accountable.
  5. Lastly, we can have all kinds of fun with challenges; individual, team and we can even challenge other clubs across the country.

As you many of know, wearable technology has become one of the hottest fitness trends in the past three years. MYZONE® is a way for Greenwood to stay on the cutting edge, for you to set goals and see results and ultimately to make fitness FUN!

Look for more information around the club, ask a staff member about purchasing your MYZONE® belt and begin your fitness journey.

Meet our New Trainer Rife Hilgartner

Rife grew up in Baltimore but has lived in Colorado for the last 20 years, primarily in the mountains. He is actively involved in racing in the off road triathlon XTERRA, which is composed of a 1.5 km swim, 30km of mountain biking, and 10 km of running. Rife is very involved with coaching triathlon and teaching Pilates, helping people balance themselves out and move better.

An important part of programming for Rife is strength training, which he believes “is an important component to your total body health. Most people just want to move really well. If you are playing with your kids, you want to be able to play and pick them up properly.”

As Rife points out, everyone is an athlete to some degree, it is important to be involved. While Rife specializes in helping clients train for marathons and cycling, his interest is in helping others train indoors to better prepare for their outside adventures.

Training Indoors for Outside

Being strong indoors can carry over for life. This can be as arduous as skiing, bike riding, running trails, or even just playing in the back yard with your children.

Denver is an active city and the members here at Greenwood Athletic Club want to continue to be active for a long time. “I’m one of those people who believes that age is just a number. With the proper programs and training, you can keep strength, health, fitness and athleticism for your entire life.”

One major area to focus on is the Posterior chain, which is from the back of your head to the bottom of your feet. It’s important to keep this area strong because it’s a major support system. The powerhouse muscles and your core are just as important as that chain, they tie right into that.

Those two systems within the body are important to make strong and to help with posture. A lot of this strengthening is part of the foundation for “Pilates for Dudes,” which demonstrates how Pilates is good for everyone.  Joseph Pilates originally created the work, creating flexibility with length, strength and control. Pilates helps strengthen in muscles you might not have even known existed. What you learn here will translate into other areas.

It’s also important to incorporate in different areas of training and movements, such as weights, yoga, Pilates, cardio, etc. This helps to create different movement patterns and allows you to train different energy systems of the body. If you are spending one day on the treadmill, spend the next on the stair master and a third in the weight room. This means you are channeling different areas to make changes in your body, day-to-day attitude and feelings about life.

Rife is available for one-on-one appointments here at Greenwood Athletic Club. Please feel free to message him HERE or check out his personal website



Welcome our New Trainer Kim Galbreath!


You have probably seen Kim at Greenwood Athletic Club over the past year, her smile is hard to miss as you walk into the athletic club. We are excited to have her fully on board as a new Personal Trainer here at Greenwood! Kim’s path to becoming a personal trainer started in 2013 when she embarked on her own weight loss journey. While she embarked on her own journey without the help of a personal trainer or a professional diet plan, she committed to making sure that others would not have to go at it alone. Kim reiterates that there’s no secret to getting healthy, eating right and exercise are a very powerful combination. Yet on her journey to getting there, she wants to make sure that others have some important and helpful advice to find the motivation to get started.


Don’t Do It Alone

Losing weight is not a sprint, it is a little sweat, but a lot of patience and forgiveness with yourself. Your weight loss and exercise journey is largely about understanding your own physical and metal balance, and the best thing you can do is to have a trainer there by your side to help you each step of the way.

Weight Training is Your Friend

A lot of people will immediately turn to cardio as a way of shedding those unwanted pounds. However, its not just cardio that you need, but also weight training. Going alone into the weight room can be overwhelming, but if you have the help and guidance from a trainer, especially one like myself who’s been through that exact moment, then it will help you gain confidence not just in the weight room, but in day-to-day activities. There’s a place for every shape and size in the weight room.

As you are starting out, I would encourage calisthenic body weight movements.  For anything that you’re uncomfortable or unable to do like starting out, there are always scaling options. For example, if you aren’t ready to dive into box jumps, you can do step ups, lunges or squats. As you progress, you want to make the use of dumbbells and barbells a top goal, as they are the best way to get the most out of each movement.








Make Nutrition a Priority

Create an eating routine, so that you are eating at the same time, and the same food. Try to pre-plan what you are going to each day, and set yourself up for success at the start of the week. You are more likely to follow a plan if you have it laid out first. 

Try Something New, Like Boxing or Obstacle Running

Boxing is both a cardio workout, and a great way to de-stress. It kicks your heart rate up, and wearing the gloves means that you are also building up some strength. Boxing targets a different type of muscle fiber than strength training because it requires a quick response. There’s also learning technique and strategies, which requires mental engagements, and provides for an all-around great workout.


Obstacle Running is a great example of an outdoor activity that will push you firmly outside of your comfort zone. Comfort does not always equal happiness, and if you try something new, it helps increase your overall confidence at the gym, at work, or at home. Sometimes you don’t know what you will fall in love with doing exercise wise, until you give it a try.


Kim is now available for one-on-one training sessions here at Greenwood, you can schedule appointments with her HERE.

You can also find Kim in the Combat Zone for Boxing Classes! View that schedule HERE

Be sure to read more about Kim’s journey on her personal website,


Meet our New Trainer Lindsey Green!

Lyndsey_webOriginally from Oklahoma, Lindsey was drawn to Colorado’s environment and people.  Lindsey is passionate about helping clients learn more about functional varied movements with high intensity. As she explains, its important to have different workouts and different ways of using weights to get the most out of your workout. Wondering what a workout with Lindsey might look like? Take a look!

Getting a Workout Off of the Machine: Functional Varied Movement Workout

Warm Up: Jump on a rowing machine for 3-5 minutes to warm up your body. You can stretch out your body a bit doing inchworms and banded stretches.

Start with a Strength Movement: Starting with strength allows you to warm your body up and get the most out of your strength work for that day. It’s helpful for people to know their one rep max so that I can work off of percentages with them. For example, one day we might do 80% of a back squat with low reps, another day we might do 50% with a higher rep volume. Allowing for this variety in weight percentage and reps will help you get stronger because you’re building endurance over time. It’s not always about going super heavy, but it’s important to know where you are at. Not to mention, Knowing your 1 Rep Max is a good measure of strength and progress.

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Deadlifts are also a great strength movement, but can be challenging to do properly. It’s helpful to start with kettlebell deadlifts, or siting on a box so that you are not fully squatting. Picking up objects from the ground is an important functional movement that is good for everyone, both inside and outside of the gym.

Conditioning: Depending on each client, there are a variety of conditioning methods to cycle through. For example, I often times have clients do burpees, wall balls, or full body movements to help elevate their heart rate. I am also a huge advocate of jump roping, its’ not only a great cardio but it’s a full body movement that’s working your legs, your forearms and your core which you need to keep tight while you jump.


Scale Your Movements: The best part about having a trainer is having someone in your corner who can assess and re-asses what your body needs. Modifications can always be made to make sure you are getting the most out of your workout, in a way that encourages muscle progression and deters injuries.

Don’t go too long: You are getting more out of your work out in a short amount of time than you would be on a cardio machine. Non-machine workouts help you build muscle endurance, which in turn will help you burn more calories throughout the day. When you can get your heart rate at an elevated state, and work through time intervals, then you can maximize your time. If you only have an hour to get your workout in, functional varied movement workouts make sure you are getting the most out of your hour.

Lindsey is available for one-on-one appointments here at Greenwood, you can contact her by clicking here, or on her Instagram @lindseygreeen.

Also, keep an eye out for her new High Intensity Conditioning Class, starting September 26 thru October 19.

The Key to Exercising? It’s Balance!

When the media describes a new fitness trend or training method, they advertise that this is the best new way to train.  Whether it is long duration/low intensity, high intensity interval training or weight training only, each proclaim to be the best. Running from one extreme or another inevitably leads to short-term gain but long-term ruin. Let’s look at the facts versus the fads

1. SAID means Specific Adaptations to Imposed Demand. This means “you get what you train for and nothing else.” For example, if all you do is lift weights and do not train for any form of endurance, you will be able to work up to two minutes and then fatigue out. The same is true for endurance-only training in a steady state; you are not powerful at any level.


2. Flexibility, but more precisely being able to move within a greater range of motion, is wonderful. But if you have no strength in that range of motion, all you have done is stretch ligaments and joint capsules and have not created a strong and stable joint to increase range of motion.

3. Neurological adaptation is a principle that says the more you perform a movement, the more efficient you become at that movement. The more efficient you become, the less calories you burn at that activity.

4. The larger your muscle, the more calories you burn, the better you look and the better bone density you have. So where does this leave us? Here are some principled suggestions to change your training regime:

Balance what you do. Do less intense cardio one to two days a week for 45 minutes or longer. Do cardiovascular intervals, going to a higher heart rate, up to two days a week. Lift weights to failure two to three days a week. Work on some type of range of motion training one to two days a week.

Key to Balance 2

Train using periodization. Have a goal for a 12-week training cycle. Within that cycle, make two week micro cycles where you vary your workouts with a specific purpose. The first two weeks can be focused on stability (Yoga, lighter weights and stability ball work, Pilates.) The second two weeks can be focused on strength building by doing sets to failure. The third two weeks can be power movements (Olympic lifting, HIIT and Spinning.) Then you repeat the three phases.

REST! Every athlete needs an off-season. Rest and recovery is sometimes the thing you need after training hard for an event or an 8-12 week workout cycle. Recover by also doing massage, trigger point or Rolfing. Resting between intense bouts of exercise is needed, so make sure you have a rest day somewhere in your week.

Key to Balance 3Balance in exercise, diet and lifestyle is key to longevity and happiness. Any of our personal trainers would be happy to meet with you and talk about what kind of balance works best for you. Please contact Vic Spatola, Director of Personal Training, or look through our Personal Training page for more information.


Pregnancy Workouts: 4 Reasons to Work Out Before, During and After

**Always consult your physician before beginning any exercise program. This general information is not intended to replace your healthcare professional. Consult with your healthcare professional to design an appropriate exercise prescription.*

Exercise has many benefits for women before and after pregnancy. Although the gym might feel like the last thing on your mind, it is important to keep active during all three trimesters of your pregnancy. Greenwood Athletic Club trainer Kelly Buresh has a passion for helping people find their happiest and healthiest self through exercise. “I was always taught that if I put my heart into something, not only could I achieve my goal but I would get immense satisfaction from it.” She believes that taking care of yourself physically improves your life in every facet. She shared with us four important reasons to keep moving before, during, and after your pregnancy.

Leading up to Pregnancy: If you are looking to get pregnant, maintaining a healthy regiment as far as physical exercise, diet and nutrition is key in prepping your body to even attain pregnancy! It can be a challenge to become pregnant if you are overweight or if you are not regularly meeting your nutritional needs.  Furthermore, maintaining healthy levels of blood pressure, and maintaining a healthy diet makes it less likely to experience complications at any stage during pregnancy. While the gym is a great place to get your workout, the best place to start is with something you already enjoy doing, whether it be going on walks, running, taking a group fitness class, playing tennis, or any other form of physical activity. Getting out and moving is important.

Getting Started: During pregnancy, it is important to stay active because the exercise and nutrition decisions you make while pregnant can affect not only you and your baby during pregnancy, but it can affect your child long after their birth. Not only does regular exercise help to relieve unnecessary symptoms such as excessive weight gain, uncomfortable swelling, premature labor, low back pain, sciatica and other pregnancy discomforts. It also greatly reduces the likelihood of experiencing complications such as high blood pressure, hypertension or gestational diabetes during your pregnancy. Maintaining a healthy weight through diet and exercise can help your child avoid things like diabetes and excessive weight in their early childhood as well. Even if you don’t already exercise on a regular basis (and unless your doctor tells you otherwise), it is recommended that you can begin an exercise regimen while pregnant. The types of exercise you might do varies from each person, but going on short 10-15 minute walks are a great way to get in some movement. Also, body weight exercises such as squats will be helpful in building leg strength, your abdominals, and even your upper body if you want to add in some weights. These exercises help to maximize your time and energy.IMG_2175IMG_2179

Benefits of Exercise: Maintaining muscle tone and building your endurance are both factors in helping women deliver babies. By building up your muscles and maintaining active, it can help alleviate the physically exhaustive process of delivering a baby. A helpful exercise for maintaining muscle tone is to do lunges with weight on one side. This requires your upper body where you have to brace your abdominals during labor to be strengthened. Another exercise, the farmers carry, even with just one weight forces you to use your abdominals to keep upright, again strengthening an area that’s key to labor.IMG_2170IMG_2173








Getting Back After Pregnancy: During pregnancy, you might feel a bit of derailment not just with weight, but it might be that your muscle structures have changed as well. Returning to your pre-pregnancy body doesn’t happen quickly and its different for everyone, since each woman has a different labor and birth experience. The important thing is to have a plan and be sure to consult with a personal trainer who can help you get ideas for how to recover. The best thing you can do after labor is to make time for yourself.
It is important to mentally have some time each day for yourself, not to mention the many mental benefits you get from adding in physical exercise. After consulting with your doctor and a personal trainer, you might consider starting 2 to 3 days a week and then assessing how much you can physically handle. Not to mention, our GATC Kids Club is available for you to drop off infants ages 6 weeks to 6 months for 1 ½ hours per visit. Our infant area is completely enclosed offering your baby a quiet and peaceful environment.

Please be sure to reach out to our Kelly Buresh and our Personal Trainers if you are interested in learning more about personal training sessions, and making time to have Greenwood Athletic Club be the best part of your day!


Grab the Dumbbells: Using Free Weights at the Gym

By Vic Spatola, Director of Personal Training

This article originally appeared in the April 2017 edition of The Pulse

What is the difference between working out on a singular weight lifting machine and lifting with free weights? Aren’t both weight training activities? Shouldn’t they give you the same benefits? In a word-NO!

Lifting in a fixed machine has some benefits:

  • It gives you the ability to isolate a muscle for maximal growth or hypertrophy
  • If you have an injury, the machine can limit the range of motion to allow you to work in a safe method

Traditionally, fixed isolated machines have been the default equipment for most weight rooms. Their simple and easy use has made gym participants more likely to lift weights. They were originally created for body builders in the 1970’s to allow them to isolate specific muscles for competition. Most were designed by former lifters who knew how an exercise should feel and then put resistance against that motion. Arthur Jones revolutionized this type of training by introducing the first line of Nautilus equipment. This equipment was the first to use a cam method, allowing the strength curve to increase as the muscle got stronger and it brought many gym goers into the weight room.

But let’s fast forward to modern times. We now understand that training exclusively in a machine limits core activation, range of motion and hampers your functional ability. Even though machines can isolate a particular muscle, they lack an overall whole body benefit.

When you lift free weights, you benefit in these ways:

  • More intense core activation
  • Stabilizer muscle activation to decrease unwanted motion
  • More muscles working and more calories burned during workouts
  • More balance and vestibular system challenge
  • Better preparation for sports and daily life


Lifting with free weights allows you to train in a three-dimensional world where as a machine locks you into one plane of movement. Every day we are affected by many external forces (i.e. gravity, rotational forces and linear resistance) and these forces are taken away when training on a machine. Not only does free weight training allow for a more complete workout, it allows for compound movements to occur with resistance. For example, if I do a bicep curl and then I add a step up on a bench as I do it, I can burn more calories and have more muscles working then simply doing either exercise. Also, when doing a barbell exercise like a deadlift or a squat, you use more core activation and increase flexibility and overall range of motion.

As the demands of a busy life increase, we need to be more efficient and selective about how we work out. Doing the same old line of machines that we have been doing for the last five years is less beneficial than moving in a three-dimensional pattern with resistance. Ask one of our personal training experts to set you up on a new weight training program!

Greenwood offers One-on-One Training, which allows you and your trainer to individualize your workout and spend a great deal of time focusing on form, technique and the best way for you to see results, or Semi-Private Personal Training, where you and a friend (or group of up to four friends) will get a great workout together with one of our professional trainers. This is a perfect option for those who like to workout with a friend but need guidance and instruction to maintain consistency and remain efficient.

We also offer a number of PWRFIT classes throughout the week, which deliver functional training movements in a circuit style format to create a high energy, calorie burning, muscle-building workout with professionally mixed music. We offer three class options: Upper Body/Core, Lower Body/Core and Total Body.


The Gamification of Exercise

An example of the current gamification trend is Performance IQ in our cycling classes. By displaying your work on a screen, the instructor can create challenges in class to get more out of each participant, you can view your current level of work in real time and the data is a great motivator! The popular device fitbit™ records movement and counts steps to motivate the individual to move more and sit less.

GATC is introducing another gamification device to our members in MYZONE! This activity tracker/ heart rate monitor records all your workouts and assigns points for your effort and workout. Based on your average heart rate, the device calculates yimages---photos_iphone-mockup-2_800x534our effort level and minutes of activity to assign you MEPs (MYZONE Effort Points.) Those MEPs are then used in challenges to track who is leading, individually or on a team.

Gamification of exercise is more than a screen displaying your output; it is a way to connect with other participants to have fun while staying active. By creating challenges on an app or in social media, people can see where they rank in a challenge and how their effort has elevated their team. These results can be shared on social media and can be viewed by your fellow team mates, holding you accountable for working out and staying consistent. By participating in contests based on your activity and effort, your workouts are more consistent and fun! We are using MYZONE this year for our 2017 Fitness Challenge to help you be accountable and help you achieve your goals.

Accountability and consistency are important keys to attaining the results you’re looking for, but adding FUN to your workouts is important too!

Vic Spatola, Director of Personal Training

Fit Family: the Serenyis

cuteDSC_4696Steve and Christy Serenyis joined GATC ten years ago, just a few months after they were married. Christy: When we moved south of Denver I wanted a good club with some intense classes. I picked GATC primarily because of the class options. We didn’t have children when we first joined, but I had heard the GATC kids programs were really good. I did the Outdoor Fit classes and loved them. A group of five or six of us really bonded last year. We wanted to keep working out really hard so we joined Boxing Babes. Now our group has grown and we participate in PWRFIT with Brandon. I like a teacher that pushes me. PWRFIT has great music and Brandon works us really hard. For Barre, it is the same thing. Christine or Chrissy are both great teachers with some really good high energy flow music.

Steve comes three times a week, Tuesday, Wednesday and Saturday, and focuses on the weight room and maybe some stair-master work. Christy: The staff in the Kids’ Club is special. They are so understanding and forgiving to the moms when we are tired and dropping off our kids quickly. Not that they know us, it is as simple as opening the door, the kids run in and you run away. I have witnessed crying kids and crying moms with the staff saying “We got this, just go” and I have assured other mothers “they will find you if there is a problem.”

Christy and Steve also speak highly of Little Lobbers instructor, Lisa Thomas. They feel that Lisa is good at engaging even challenging kids. She loves them even when they have bad days as kids do. If Christy wasn’t there at the end of Little Lobbers, Lisa knew she was in a class and took her child back to the Kids Club.

Nine-year old Anna just joined the Greenwood Tiger Shark swim team, but also plays tennis and soccer. Anna likes school (third grade) and is great at everything. MarcuteDSC_4737shall is seven and in second grade. He is an excellent reader, well above his age group. He participated in Little Lobbers with Lisa and has taken Stroke School. Harrison is five and has done a lot here at the club. He is in his third year of Little Lobbers with Lisa. He loves everything and Trish has helped him be really good at swimming.

MacKenzie is the youngest at two and a half. She loves Kids’ Club and taking swim lessons with Trish too. Christy: I often think of my mother’s regret. She wishes now that she had taken time for her own needs while raising children. I tell my friends, take just one hour; your kids will be fine. My husband sees that because I work out, I am a lot happier. I know Steve is happier because he works out and we want our children to find happiness and be healthy too. I like the community here. Since GATC is smaller, a lot of us recognize each other. I think the community creates more respect for each other – it is cleaner, neater and friendlier. I tell people to come here all the time!

Nothing Can Stop You

Let’s face it, joining a health club can be intimidating. It doesn’t matter who you are or what you’ve done athletically in the past. Entering a new environment with new people, processes, studios and classes can be exciting and overwhelming. Be encouraged—you are not alone and we are here to help! Every month new members join our club with the same hopes, goals and expectations you have. Whether you want to run your first 5K, complete all the obstacles in a Tough Mudder, set a personal best in an upcoming triathlon, become leaner, healthier or stronger, or lose that first 20 or last 10 pounds; if you have a goal, Greenwood can help you get there. It really is as simple as getting started. What begins as stepping outside your comfort zone will soon feel like home.

Start by planning your first visit and then your next. Put specific classes on your calendar. Schedule your introductory personal training or Pilates session. Create the habit of consistently walking through our doors at least four times each week and soon Greenwood will become “The Best Part of Your Day!” If you have great intentions, or had them at one point but need accountability, simply invite a friend, colleague or neighbor tstrong_LRo visit the club and join themselves. Then, the two of you can hold each other accountable,
workout together and be the voice of encouragement on sticking to your plan. Studies prove that working out with a friend or trainer you are accountable to, will increase your likelihood of staying consistent, enjoying the process and ultimately reaching your goals.

Whether you’ve been a member for years or are new to Greenwood, don’t let the intimidation factor or anything else stop you. The more you exercise, the better you’ll feel and the quicker you will achieve the results you came here for. Only attending twice per week? Try a new class or add a strength day to your routine. Need a little extra guidance? Set up a time to meet with me. I can help set up a personalized workout plan with class recommendations, workout ideas and exercises you can do to get the results you are looking for. My services as Member Coach are complimentary and open to all Greenwood members. Schedule your next workout today! Get started and let me know if I can help.

Sheri Warren
Member Coach
Greenwood Athletic and Tennis Club