What is Functional Fitness?

By Vivian Griggs
Personal Training Coordinator

Functional Fitness has been a buzzy term for several years now.  But what does it really mean?  At its core, functional fitness is exercises or activities that make you stronger, fitter and more flexible in your day-to-day life.  Putting luggage in the overhead compartment?  Functional fitness can help with that.  Playing sports with the kids or grandkids in the backyard?  Functional fitness can help with that.  Getting up and down the stairs or in and out of the car?  Functional fitness can help with that!

Woman lifting child into air

Functional exercises are those that multiple joints through multiple planes of movement.  For example, doing a bicep curl while doing a squat.  Your body has to stabilize itself using your core muscles, your leg muscles have to work to lift not only your body weight but the weight of the dumbbells and your arm work to lift the dumbbells in the bicep curl.  Just about every joint you have gets involved in this move, and your core has to stabilize you.  Talk about getting more bang for your buck! 

Man squatting and lifting weights in gymSome great functional exercises are squats with a bicep curl, squats with an overhead press, a plank, a pushup, or a lunge.  The list is almost endless and can be customized to what your specific needs are.  Curious how you can optimize your time in the gym and really make that workout work for you?  Book a session with a trainer and they can show you a full routine of functional exercises that will specifically help you!

Member Spotlight: George Casey

When member George Casey joined Club Greenwood in early 2019, he was looking for indoor tennis courts, and everything else that came with them was a ‘bonus’.  He had a meeting with Member Coach Gary Stotler, who connected him with trainer Melissa Byers.  That small step is all it took to help George make a lifestyle change that he’s stuck with for several months, and doesn’t see stopping anytime soon. 

When member George Casey joined Greenwood in early 2019, he was looking for indoor tennis courts. The Athletic Club, classes and amenities that came with them was just a ‘bonus’ until he had a meeting with Member Coach, Gary Stotler. At their first meeting, Gary connected George with trainer Melissa Byers. That small step was all it took for George to make a lifestyle change that he continues to stick with months later and doesn’t anticipate stopping any time soon. One of George’s fitness goals was simply to get healthier and he says that working with Melissa has made all the difference. Melissa helps hold him accountable, gives guidance to achieve proper form and supports him in making healthy choices. In the five months that they have been training together, George has lost 50 pounds! 

George’s other goal was to improve his endurance, strength and flexibility on the golf course. Not only has he done that, but his handicap has dropped from a 30 to a seven and he intends to break five. Before working with Melissa, George had not won any tournaments. Fast forward to today and he has won seven! These efforts have led George to qualify for the Golf Channel Amateur Tour National Championship in West Palm Beach. After many health setbacks including chemotherapy and a hip replacement at a young age, these accomplishments sure are sweet. Thanks to Gary and Melissa, George has a whole new set of fitness goals to match his increased fitness levels. Way to go George! We can’t wait to see what you do next. 

My Friend Sheri’s Last Story and 3 Steps You Should Take

by Drew Overholser

At 55, Sheri Warren was in the prime of her life. She had two wonderful sons, a loving husband, an adorable 4-year-old granddaughter, and a newborn grandson. Her granddaughter loved, loved, loved her grandma. As the Director of Sales and Retention, Sheri was my supervisor. She offered a rare combination of respected work colleague and friend. She gave me a chance at a job I needed four years ago and she created an environment I thrived in.

Sheri’s death is a tragic loss of the highest magnitude. I’m heartbroken over losing my friend. How did she die from a blood clot when she was a fit, active, vibrant person with a healthy diet, along with a nice Cabernet on occasion? Since she had a family history of blood clots and had a blood clot herself five years ago, it’s tragic that this latest clot wasn’t discovered before it killed her.

This is so scary. Could it happen to me? Could it happen to you? Is there anything we can do to reduce our risk? I believe there is. In 2010, I wrote a book called BVibrant, which included a chapter about circulation. The following is a modified excerpt from that chapter…

A few years ago I attended a presentation by Rob Daigle, who is a vascular technologist. His specialty is diagnosing vascular diseases and circulatory problems using ultrasound. He wrote a medical ultrasound textbook which is primarily about how blood and lymph circulate through the body. For this presentation, Rob brought in a Doppler ultrasound unit, a device that allows you to hear the blood flowing inside the arteries and veins in the body. He asked one of the students to remove a sock and shoe and roll up a pant leg. Rob put conducting jelly on the student’s lower leg, just above his ankle. Then he placed the ultrasound probe on the student’s leg where the jelly was. Then all of us in attendance took turns listening through headphones that were attached to the base of the Doppler device. The headphones allowed us to hear the sounds of blood flow inside our volunteer’s leg. In other words, the Doppler allowed us to hear circulation. It’s no great revelation that blood flows through the body all the time. Yet, to hear movement coming from the inside of a still leg is fascinating. Next, he asked the student to move his foot, ankles, and toes vigorously while we listened through the headphones. This movement, or exercise, changed the sound dramatically. Instead of just a gentle, soft swishing, the volume and amplitude of the sound increased dramatically. The lesson is this:

Movement increases circulation!

This information could save your life. Rob is a frequent flyer, traveling around the country giving presentations on vascular health. If your vascular system is not in particularly good shape AND you sit for a long period of time without moving, as we typically do on a flight, you could be at risk for a blood clot in the legs because your blood stagnates when you sit for long periods of time. If a blood clot develops in the veins in your legs, it has the potential to travel to your heart and lungs when you get up and start moving. If the blood clot is large, it can be fatal.

Rob says he periodically does simple leg and foot movements during long plane flights to keep his circulation flowing. This reduces the risk of blood clots and pulmonary embolus, a clot that travels to the lungs.

A friend of mine, Irit, who is a physician, added that the heart pumps blood to the limbs through arteries. Veins return the blood back to the heart. However, there is no pump that does this. Instead, movement or exercise is what creates the return of blood.
What actions can we take to reduce our risk? Here are three suggestions:

1. ROM exercise. For a long time, I’ve advocated for a simple non-weight bearing range of motion (ROM) exercise for healthy joints, ease of movement, and improved circulation. Consistent ROM exercise reduces stagnation and keeps blood flowing. It’s pretty obvious how important this is. Here’s a link to my ROM video. https://youtu.be/uDXNAlNBCSA.
Give this exercise video a try. It takes only about 15 minutes, it’s easy to do, and it feels great. Will it save your life? I don’t know. Surely it will reduce your risk. Next month I’m going to reshoot this video with the help of a professional videographer. Plus, I’ll make additional videos with other ROM exercises. These videos will be released as part of my website launch in October. Stay tuned!

2. You are in charge of your health. Sheri tended to put everyone else first. Although she did take care of herself, she didn’t urgently insist on getting the help she needed when it mattered the most. This is understandable. We tend to downplay our own needs. We don’t want to create a fuss. Doctors give us information, guidance, and valuable assistance. But you have to be the driver of your health. Keep asking questions and dig deeper for answers. Ultimately, you are responsible for your health. Many health issues that happen to you might not be your fault, but how you respond is up to you. Don’t wait. Take action. Insist on getting what you need.

3. Know your history. As the driver of your health, it’s your responsibility to know your history and health tendencies. There is so much diagnostic information available today. Take the time to use the valuable resources around you and get assistance from valued health care providers. Go to specialists if need be. Get your heart checked. Get your skin checked. Get your prostate checked. Do cancer screenings. Do dental and vision tests. Learn about healthy food choices from a dietician. Consider alternative therapies. Do these things so you know where you’re vulnerable, which helps you stay ahead of problems.

RIP my friend, Sheri.

10 Exercises for When You Don’t Have Time

Vivian Griggs, Personal Training Coordinator

Everyone knows they should be active every day. But for how long? And at what intensity? Cardio or resistance? It can all be so confusing. Throw in the reality you really don’t have time for one more thing and it’s easy to just skip it altogether.

There are some sneaky ways to be more active every day that won’t require equipment, a change of clothes or even any additional time. Who knew?

Accept the fact you might feel a little silly doing some of this. Who cares! You’re being healthy and getting in better shape. And remember: these tips will not replace a good old fashioned workout. But they will help you be more active, stay fit and maybe even lose a little weight!

Let’s get going!

  1. Brushing your teeth. You’re just standing there — that’s a full two minutes you could be doing something. How about some plie squats? Step out wide, toes out to the sides. Drop straight down to just above knee level, keeping your head and chest up, shoulders and hips in line.
  2. On the phone. Whether you’re at home or the office, you have several options here. If you can’t put the call on speaker, stand up and do some squats or lunges. If you can put it on speaker, alternate between 10 wall or desk push-ups (the closer you are to horizontal, the harder it will be) and 10 squats. If you have a private office, drop to the ground and get some abs in. Alternate between 20 bicycles and 30-second planks.
  3. Conference call where you are not participating = cardio time! Alternate between 10 jumping jacks, 10 alternating lunges, 10 wall or desk pushups and 10 bicycles.
  4. Running errands. Park further out and speed walk.
  5. Take the stairs! Anywhere!
  6. Helping kids with homework. Every 10 minutes, hop up with your child and do 10 high knees. You’ll get some exercise and they will actually stay more focused. Double whammy!
  7. Watching TV. (If you have time to do this, I might hate you). Every commercial break, alternate between lunges, push-ups and bicycles for each commercial.
  8. Cooking. This is pretty similar to brushing your teeth. Do squats, narrow squats, plies. You have to keep an eye on that boiling pot, might as well get some leg work in.
  9. Sitting at your desk. Okay, this one needs equipment. But I promise the equipment fits in your bag! Grab a resistance band. Loop it around your chair and your ankle and do leg extensions. Alternate 20 per leg.
  10. Bedtime. Take a couple minutes once you climb into to bed to stretch. Hamstrings, abductors, your back, chest. You’ll sleep better!

It can be tough to squeeze exercise in with all the other things demanding your attention and time. But with a little persistence and creativity, you can get your workout in!

Vivian Griggs, Personal Training Coordinator
303.770.2582 x301 | VivianG@GreenwoodATC.com

What’s Myzone, Anyway?

Lisa Thomas, Director of Member Services

To put it simply, Myzone tracks your effort to help you get the most out of every workout. Myzone measures your heart rate to tell you the truth about how much effort you’re putting in, and it’s 99.4% accurate.

As the name suggests, everyone has different fitness zones that can change over time. Myzone helps you identify these zones, adapt to new zones, and rewards you for your effort. These zones are displayed using five simple-to-read, color-coded tiles that reflect the intensity of your workout. The more effort you put forth, the higher your zone and the more MEPs — Myzone effort points — you earn. When you earn these MEPs, you turn fitness into a fun and exciting game.

Myzone tracks your heart rate, activity time and calories burned via a comfortable chest strap. With Bluetooth and built-in memory, Myzone has the versatility to stream live stats to your smartphone, third party apps and devices (including Apple Watch, Garmin, Android Wear), and Myzone group displays at participating fitness centers.

The free Myzone app gives you access to the customized activity page where you can view your daily, weekly and yearly results. You can set goals, view status rankings, enter group challenges and even connect with your friends. Myzone differs from wrist-based trackers by accurately measuring effort readings no matter what form of exercise you choose. (Swimming, however, poses some difficulty with the Myzone belt staying connected to skin.)

Myzone levels the playing field so everyone can compete and effort is rewarded. Real-time feedback increases motivation and accountability, and, over time, leads to real results.

Stop by the Welcome Desk and pick up your Myzone belt. You will be rewarded and once again feel good about exercise!

Lisa Thomas, Director of Member Services
303.770.2582 x284 | LisaT@GreenwoodATC.com

Welcome Our New Personal Training Coordinator!

Welcome Vivian Griggs as Our New Personal Training Coordinator!

Vivian’s passion is motivating clients to achieve their best and become as healthy as possible. Her motto is, “Grow, Transform, Succeed!” Vivian has been a certified personal trainer for 12 years with a specialty in post-rehabilitative training for shoulders, hips and knees. She has two Bachelor of Science degrees in finance and accounting control systems. Vivian is married to Blake and has one son, Asa.

NASM-Certified Personal Trainer Development Program at Greenwood

Greenwood is partnering with the National Academy of Sports Medicine (NASM) to bring NASM-certified Personal Trainer Development Program to our club.

“True to our mission of providing students with a solid educational foundation, our goal is to create the premier fitness training school allowing for an in-depth educational experience,” said Master Trainer Vic Spatola. “To achieve this objective, we knew it was critical to align ourselves with the fitness certification program that would best prepare our students for a successful career as a professional fitness trainer. The best partner for us is NASM because of its reputation as an industry leader.”

NASM, a global leader in personal training certification, sports performance training and injury prevention and recovery, is the premier certifying body and education authority for Certified Personal Trainers (CPT). Accredited by the National Commission for Certifying Agencies (NCCA), the NASM CPT credential is the preferred choice of top health clubs and fitness facilities around the world. Students who complete the Greenwood NASM-Certified Personal Trainer Development Program will develop a variety of health and fitness skills, including:

  • Conducting accurate fitness assessments
  • Recruiting and retaining clients
  • Developing evidence-based exercise programs
  • Teaching and demonstrating proper techniques
  • Empowering, challenging and motivating clients toward an improved quality of life

“Through this collaboration with Vic Spatola and Greenwood Athletic and Tennis Club, we’re making our CPT program much more accessible and creating a long-term career path for health and fitness professionals looking to advance their education,” said Andrew Wyant, president of the National Academy of Sports Medicine.

After completing and passing the NASM-CPT exam, graduates will have the opportunity to pursue flexible and financially-rewarding careers in a variety of settings, such as multi-purpose health clubs, corporate fitness centers, independent business operators, community centers and more. Graduates will also secure a job interview at Greenwood.

Interested in becoming a NASM-certified personal trainer? Contact Vic Spatola at VicS@Greenwoodatc.com or 303.770.2582 x339.

About NASM

The National Academy of Sports Medicine (NASM) is part of Ascend Learning, a leading provider of technology-based educational, curriculum and assessment solutions for healthcare and other vocational industries. Since 1987, NASM, currently based in Chandler, Arizona, has been a global leader in providing evidence-based certifications and advanced specializations for fitness professionals. Academic institutions nationwide incorporate NASM’s leading fitness content into curriculum as part of Certified Personal Trainer courses, and bachelor’s and master’s degree programs. The vision of NASM is to empower fitness and wellness professionals, supporting them in their goal of motivating clients to lead healthier lives.

Pushing Through the Fear of Beginning

Shaun Cook, Personal Trainer

With many new beginnings, a large and seemingly immovable boulder blocks the road to success. In life, that boulder has many names but, at its core, it’s fear. And fear has one objective: to keep us from our greatest selves. Fear wants to keep us painfully mediocre, or just okay.

How do you get past fear? Push into it. It’s the only way to continue your journey to the greater you.

There’s an upfront cost to pushing forward. It’s going to take time, energy and other valuable resources. More than all of that, it’s going to take consistency.

Many people give up in front of the boulder. Lies like, “you’re not enough,” “you don’t have what it takes,” and “you’re too late,” swirl in our minds. “You have to do it perfectly,” keeps us from even starting. But when you push through the noise and discomfort, you’ll find what you thought was immovable begins to roll away.

When you push through the noise and discomfort, you’ll find what you thought was immovable begins to roll away.

Momentum. If you make it to this stage, the game changes. It takes work to keep moving forward, but less than before, because you’re already moving!

At Greenwood, we’re all on this journey together. And, together, we’re growing against the resistance. Our personal trainers are here to help you develop abundant energy and vitality, to look your best and perform at your peak ability, and to free your spirit to change the world. We’ll provide the tools for your success down this road to greatness, but it’s up to you to fearlessly lean into the boulder that’s holding you back.

Ready to start? Let’s go.

What is Functional Fitness?

Lindsey Green, Personal Trainer

I believe we all have a right to a quality life. We all deserve to live long and we all deserve to live well. But sometimes we don’t know how to achieve that on our own. We make certain food choices we think are healthy and we go to the gym to spend a given amount of time exercising because we think it’s what we should do.

As a new trainer here at GATC, I have quickly learned that I do not do things the traditional way. As someone who firmly believes working out on a machine is not the most beneficial, I have established myself as a trainer who is passionate about functional training and educating people inside the gym so they are better off outside of the gym. So what does this mean?

My answer is simple. It’s in the everyday movements you already do outside of the gym. It’s found in real, whole foods that consist of tons of micronutrients and good sources of carbohydrates, fats and protein. It’s learning how to eat and move in a way that supports a long, healthy and energetic life. It’s also about finding a confidence in yourself you never knew existed.

When you sit down in a chair, pick something up off the floor, carry your groceries into the house or put your luggage into the overhead compartment, you’re doing functional movements. They’re functional because they help you accomplish whatever task you’re doing at that given time. Wouldn’t it be ideal to train these movements in the club so we can decrease our risk of injury, become stronger and more efficient? The confidence alone that comes with being more independent and strong is incomparable.

Isolating your muscles on a given machine is never a movement we see outside of the gym. At what point in your day do you use only your triceps to move an object? The answer is you never do. You do complex, multi-joint movements. Add some weight and a little intensity and you’re not only on your way to becoming a fitter version of yourself, but you will look and feel the way you’ve always wanted to.

Doing constantly varied, functional movements at a high intensity is the answer. If you’re training with me, you’ll quickly learn there’s nothing easy about this, but it’s a really fun way of learning something new that will benefit you for years to come!

Lindsey Green, Personal Trainer
303.770.2582 x369 | LindseyG@GreenwoodATC.com

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.