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

Choose a heart healthy path…

 

blogpath3Heart health could be the most important physical attribute of all. A healthy heart feeds oxygenated blood to every muscle, every organ and every cell in your body. So what is the best way to ensure you have a healthy heart? The most obvious way to improve heart health is to simply be active.

According to the American Heart Association, you should get at least 30 minutes of moderate to intense exercise most days, if not every day for optimal heart health. We can all find 30 minutes in our busy schedules to dedicate to our heart. A 30 minute walk/run through your neighborhood will not only get your heart pumping but could be just the ticket to clear your mind, stimulate positive ideas and allow you to take in some Vitamin D from the sun.

All activity is beneficial. You only have one heart – take care of it, choose to be active and you will thrive in areas beyond heart health. Aerobic exercise like swimming, biking, or use of cardio equipment will strengthen the heart and lungs by improving the body’s ability to utilize oxygen. The stronger your heart the more efficient it is at pumping blood to the rest of the body and eliminating toxins. Yoga, deep breathing and other stress reducing activities help lower blood pressure and bring more oxygen to all areas of the body as well. If that isn’t enough motivation to get moving, I’m not sure what is!

Hate cardio activity? Yoga not your thing? Prefer to lift weights? That’s okay too because even anaerobic activities like strength training and high intensity interval training teach the body to become efficient at creating energy and recovering from bursts of energy output. Strength training will increase your heart rate while creating both muscle strength and muscle density. Increasing muscle strength and muscle density increases your metabolism and strengthens the immune system. Schedule your daily workout and vary your activities and you will improve your heart health and chances for a longer, healthier life. With all the options available to you, finding something to do for at least 30 minutes per day should be easy. Be creative. Use the stairs in your home if all else fails. I’m confident you’ll find something fun to do it in a heartbeat!

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Corporate Executives Capitalize Upon the Benefits of Exercise

Are you a corporate executive or manager striving to increase productivity, improve your bottom line and attract high-achieving employees? Start wbusinessDSC_0415ith investing in employee wellness, setting a personal example and encouraging employees to take the time to work out. These are just three important ways that executives can capitalize upon the benefits of exercise for themselves, their employees and ultimately their company.

Research continues to support the fact that fit employees are less likely to get sick thereby lowering health care costs. Employees who take the time to work out have more energy, exude positive attitudes at work, are typically more productive and can handle stressful situations more effectively. Since those who exercise tend to set physical goals they most likely know how to set professional goals as well and will systematically put processes in place to achieve those goals and won’t stop until they do. Finding employees who have these qualities is essential. Why not partner with your local health club like Greenwood Athletic and Tennis Club in Greenwood Village, CO to customize discounts for your employees or better yet, subsidize those memberships to encourage greater participation.

As a leader, every corporate executive should set an example that health and wellness is critical. When corporate executives provide an example to their employees, employees follow suit. Setting time aside to ensure they are fit and healthy will show that they value the same in their employees. Executives who do so will exude the personal benefits of a healthier, stronger, more energetic, positive leader; one who can handle whatever challenges come their way. This will help employees want to do the same and in doing so become the best, most productive employee they can be. Employees who miss less work, have more energy, are more productive, handle stress more effectively, and are able to set and achieve goals will ultimately benefit the company’s bottom line.  Additionally, employees want to maintain balance between their personal, physical and professional lives. Wisely supporting and encouraging them to do so will reap huge benefits to everyone involved; the company, the employee and their families.
Other statistics that show how corporate executives capitalize upon the benefits of exercise are shown below.  Wellness Proposals, a corporate wellness consulting company recently published the following:

  • Employees who exercise regularly and lead healthy life styles incur 31% lower health care costs than employees who live sedentary, unhealthy lifestyles.
  • Almost 50% of medical costs are incurred due to illnesses that can be avoided with small life-style changes.
  • The typical ROI on corporate wellness investment tends to be about $4 to $5 saved for every dollar spent
  • Make the investment in your company. The benefits are substantial and far outweigh the costs.

By Sheri Warren, Personal Trainer, Member Coach and Director of Sales and Retention

Consistency is the Key!

Speak to a variety of fitness professionals about the best way to achieve fitness results and you will get a variety of answers. Let’s face it, there are a variety of ways to improve your health and a variety of workout programs to improve your waistline. The key to actually achieving those results however is one they will all agree upon; consistency! Consistency is critical to obtaining long term, recognizable and sustainSherriWarren and Hollyable results; results that you can see and results you can feel. So make a daily appointment with yourself to take spin class on Monday, workout with your friend on Tuesday, hike with the dog on Wednesday, meet with your trainer on Thursday and take Yoga on Friday. Doing so will do more than decrease your waistline.

Consistent exercise keeps your blood pressure and cholesterol in check, stimulates the mind, shapes and strengthens muscles, tendons and bones, leads to a general feeling of well being, has been shown to increase productivity in other areas of your life and may even help to ensure deeper relationships with the important people in your life. Consistent exercisers tend to live longer, healthier lives, deal more effectively with stressful circumstances and having a more positive outlook on life. Who wouldn’t sign up for that?  Create a written plan or enlist the help of a fitness professional to write one for you, then schedule each fitness appointment in your calendar. Doing so will greatly increase the likelihood that you will stick to your plan. Relying on whether you “feel” like exercising on a daily basis never works. Feelings change but the truth that consistency is the key will remain true whether you feel like moving or not.

Sticking to a written plan that requires consistent exercise allows your body to respond appropriately and the results will follow. Seeing the physical changes and experiencing the emotional changes in overall well-being reinforces your desire to continue with the plan. So go to the club, attend that class and set an alarm for Boot Camp and watch how the wonderful habit of consistently creates the results you’ve been looking for.

By Sheri Warren, Personal Trainer, Member Coach and Retention Manager

KEYS TO RESULTS: WORKOUT HARD, EAT WISELY AND REPEAT

The fitness industry and society routinely come up with “magic bullets.” Whether it is a program, class or product, the promoters say this is the key for people to lose weight and achieve the body they want. In my opinion, they are full of it. The only path to results is by following these five steps:

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WORKOUT HARD – Whether it is a cardiovascular session or a weight lifting routine, you need to do it intensely enough to break a sweat and feel very fatigued. Often, I see people doing cardio, going through the motions and barely breaking a sweat or breathing hard. The same for lifting- I often see people pick up weights, do an exercise and then put them down and look no more fatigued than as if they were chewing gum. It’s called a workout for a reason people! Sweat, push yourself and feel a little sore the next day.

STOP EATING SO MUCH – Most people say they eat healthy and yet they are overweight. There are three possible explanations for this: either you have a hormonal dysfunction (12% of the total US population has this), you think you eat healthy food but actually do not, or you eat healthy but eat too much. Diet is 70% of the weight loss equation. If you consistently drop your caloric intake, make everything you eat nutritionally relevant and eat a variety of different foods, you can actually achieve weight loss that is long-term and healthy.

HAVE FUN – Try different activities that get you moving. Learn to love to make your body move in different ways. Have fun and involve the family. The more you are around people who are active, the more you become active.

BE CONSISTENT YEAR ROUND – Many people get in shape in January and lose momentum by April. Then they fall back into destructive habits that counteract results. Try this; never let more than 48 hour pass before you exercise intensely. Keep that rule and you will see a dramatic difference in yourself.

DON’T BE AFRAID TO ASK FOR HELP – Whether it is a trainer, neighbor, friend or spouse- ask for help to become or stay active. Again, the more you associate with active people, the more active you will become. Don’t be afraid to ask a professional for help in achieving your goals. Everyone needs a coach to help them in a sport, the same goes for fitness.

AGAIN, eat less but healthy food, be active intensely, have fun with it, be social and ask for help once and awhile. Repeat this prescription every day and watch the results.

For more help with your fitness goals, visit the GATC Personal Training page and for nutrition information, the GATC Nutrition Services page.

Vic Spatola, Director of Personal Training

THE FIVE ESSENTIAL EXERCISES

Exercise routines can be complicated, intimidating and downright confusing for
those stepping into the weight room for the first time. Training the body is simply identifying natural movement and training the body along those natural movements. When broken down, the human body moves in only a few different ways: squatting, bending, lunging, pushing, pulling or twisting. By combining these moves, we can effectively create five exercises that target all the main movements and work the whole body.

The five exercises are:

single leg dl 21. Single Leg Deadlifts: Simply stand upright balancing on one leg, keeping the leg off the ground as straight as possible. Bend at the waist and reach with your opposite hand to try and touch the foot on the ground. Keep your leg that is off the ground as in line with your torso as you can to get a good stretch for the hamstrings.

BOX SQUAT2. Box Squats: Squatting is a movement we perform all the time. Squat stand with your calves lightly touching a box and push your hips backwards like you are sitting in a chair, doing your best to keep your upper body as upright as possible and your back flat. As soon as you touch the box with the back of your legs, push through the middle of your foot to stand upright again. The lower the box, the harder the movement will be.

dumbell rowpush up and down both (1)3. Dumbbell Rows: Place the left hand and knee on a bench with the hand positioned at the top of the bench and the knee near the bottom, keeping the back as flat as possible. The right leg will remain somewhat straight while the right arm is holding a dumbbell that you will pull straight up to your right hip. Simply switch arms and legs for the other side.

4. Push-ups: Start by lying on your stomach and placing your hands pressed into the ground near your armpits. Keeping your entire body flat, push through the arms and chest to straighten your arms until only your hands and toes are on the ground. Lower to the ground under control to perform one repetition. Start from your knees to make the exercise easier until you feel ready to progress.

medballtwistVERT5. Medicine Ball Lunge and Twist: Holding a medicine ball in front of your chest, step forward with one leg and sink down until you have a 90 degree bend at the ankle, knee and hip with your torso completely upright. The back leg should have similar 90 degree bend as the front leg. When the back knee is almost touching the ground, pause and rotate the torso so the medicine ball goes over the front leg before returning to the middle and pushing through the ball of the front foot to return to a standing position. Repeat for the other leg to complete one repetition.

Matt Weems, GATC Personal Trainer

Meet Kelly Buresh our Newest Certified Personal Trainer

Every once in a while, we expand our team and add some amazing new people to our family. Meet Kelly Buresh, our newest personal trainer.

Where are you from?

I’m from Colorado originally. We moved back here from L.A. and before that we were in St. Louis. This is the first time my husband has lived in Colorado. I am so excited to be home.

What is your educational background?

KellyBureshwebI have my bachelor’s degree from Regis University and originally studied English and marketing. I love to read and thought I wanted to be an English teacher, but then I started teaching group fitness and small group training classes. I became a Spin instructor and that’s really what motivated me to get my NASM (National Academy of Sports Medicine) certification.

 

 

Why did you decide to switch from English and marketing to fitness?

My dad has diabetes and I watched him change his life with exercise and healthy eating habits and I wanted to help others do that. I want to help people become athletes; even people who do not have a lot of experience with exercise. I want to help people realize that they can make good decisions and change their lives for the better.

Since you recently became a mom, what advice do you have for new mothers trying to get back in shape?

Be patient. That’s my best advice. It’s a process. I believe that one of the hardest things is feeling like you don’t have enough time to exercise. I still feel like that. New mothers are busy, but there are small things that you can do. Go on walks with the baby. Take the stairs. Pregnancy makes you tired and your body loses endurance so build that back up first. Small things will add up quickly. Also, make sure to work those abs! Do planks and sit-ups every day and remember to be kind to yourself. Don’t expect everything to go back to normal right away. You will get there soon enough.

Do you have any favorite success stories you would like to share with us?

My favorite success story is when I was working with someone who only swam. He had no desire to weight train but started just because he thought he needed something additional to add to his workout routine. I took him into the weight room and before long he began to notice the physical benefits of increased strength. He started swimming faster, noticed that his endurance increased so he was able to swim longer distances and for longer durations of time and was losing inches. He needed less coffee because he had so much more energy. The benefits of weight training began to transpire into all aspects of his life. He just wanted to spice up his workout routine and in doing so with weight training he became so much healthier overall.

Do you have any tips for people who are attempting to make a lifestyle change to include fitness?

I always think of my mother. She tried many types of fitness and nothing ever stuck until she tried yoga and loved it. Find that thing that you like and do it multiple times a week. Keep trying different things until you find it.

What exercises do you love?

I love anything leg related and for cardio I like running because I love being outside, and spinning, which is why I became a Spin instructor.

If you are interested in Personal Training at Greenwood Athletic and Tennis Club with Kelly Buresh, then call 303-770-2582 x370.

 

Meet Aubree Allison

It’s time to introduce you to the heart and soul of Greenwood Athletic and Tennis Club: our amazing staff.

Meet Aubree Allison, one of our nationally certified personal trainers.

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7 Things You Might Not Know About Aubree

Why I Became a Trainer: I had a friend who was overweight and who wanted to start working out. I created workouts for us to do together and I was inspired by how quickly her body adapted and by how much better it made her feel. I have such a passion for helping people reach their fitness goals and realize their full health potential.

Favorite Workout: I enjoy any solid leg workout.

Book/Movie That Inspired Me: Tuesdays with Morrie. That book felt so close to home for me when I had a nursing patient in college with ALS. It really inspired me to live a happy life because our time here on earth is far too short.

Favorite Weekend Activities: I love doing anything active with my hubby, Royce and our puppy, Burton.

Things That Keep Me Motivated to Stay Active, Fit and Healthy: My coworkers do an amazing job of keeping me motivated to stay fit. I also love how my body feels after workouts and after eating delicious healthy meals.

If I Were Not a Trainer, I would Be: A chef. I love cooking.

Favorite Guilty Pleasure Food: Thai food… followed by ice cream!