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Frank D’Ariano

A big shout out to our member Frank D’Ariano for the awesome progress he’s made in the last few months. Keep up the great work, Frank!

“Sue is my trainer at Medford Fitness. I need her because I haven’t been in a gym for 35 years until recently. Sue is a great teacher and coach. I’ve lost a few pounds in the past couple months, dropped some belt sizes, and I’m feeling stronger! I also have much neck and back pain.

Sue definitely challenges me during each workout. Sheena has been very helpful with her assessments, too.

The biggest thing I’ve learned so far is that you don’t have to do it alone. Working with a trainer and within a group has done wonders!”

8 Things We Learned About Weight Loss in 2018

New Year’s resolutions: a lot of people make them but not many keep them. Getting fit and losing weight are two of the most common goals people set as the new year approaches. Unfortunately, only about 8% of people reach the goals they set.

Why do so many people’s weight loss efforts fail?

These eight research findings from 2018 shed new light on weight loss – and how to make it stick:

To get rid of excess weight, exercise should be combined with dietary changes. We’ve all heard it before: when it comes to losing weight, diet and exercise are an inseparable duo. Now we have more evidence that a good diet coupled with a regular fitness routine is a surefire match for optimal weight loss. A recent meta-analysis, which examined eleven studies conducted on postmenopausal women, concluded that diet and exercise reduce body fat more than diet or exercise alone.

For older adults, exercise-induced weight loss can boost quality of life. Here’s another study that underscores the importance of combining diet with exercise. Researchers at Wake Forest University divided 249 older adults into three groups. Participants in the first group received only dietary counseling. The other two groups received dietary counseling and were also assigned to an exercise program: one did resistance training and the third group completed an aerobic exercise routine. Participants in the two exercise groups reported significantly greater improvements to their quality of life.

Strength training works. What do most people do when they go to the gym? They head straight for the treadmill or stair climber for a cardio fix. While aerobic exercise is vital to our health, resistance training can also lead to serious weight loss. A recent randomized trial studied the effects of resistance training and dietary intervention in young women. The results of the study suggest that resistance training – along with diet – can reduce body fat while increasing lean mass.

Watching what you eat is more important than watching how much you eat. Counting calories got you stressed? Breathe a sigh of relief: the quality of your diet might matter more than how many calories you ingest, according to the results of a study published earlier this year. If you don’t want the hassle of counting every calorie or measuring your portions, stick to unprocessed foods, reduce your sugar intake, and eat more fresh fruits and vegetables.

The boosts in emotional well-being that accompany exercise can aid weight loss. Getting active does more than just improve your physical health. Exercise benefits your mind too. A study published in the Journal of Physical Activity and Health found that exercise leads to weight loss largely due to its positive effects on mood, self-regulation, and emotional health. Specifically, exercise reduced emotional eating in overweight women.

To lose weight, you might need more exercise than you think. In a study conducted at the University of Colorado, sedentary male and female participants needed to burn about 3,000 extra calories per week to lose weight. Study participants who burned 1,500 extra calories per week did not lose weight, and some even put on pounds throughout the course of the study – which lasted for twelve weeks. If 150 minutes a week of moderate activity – the minimum recommended by the Centers for Disease Control – isn’t helping you shed the pounds, you may need to increase the intensity or duration of your fitness routine.

For overweight kids, lifestyle changes trump genetics. Some kids may be genetically predisposed to carry extra weight. But all hope is not lost. Researchers at the University of Copenhagen studied the habits of 750 children. Based on the results of their study, the researchers concluded that diet and exercise still lead to weight loss – even when a child’s genetics make him or her more prone to obesity.

If you’re short on time, you might want to try high-intensity interval training (HIIT). Our busy lives can make exercise challenging, and a shortage of time is one of the most commonly cited reasons why people don’t workout enough. Fortunately, HIIT is not only quick but also highly effective. A small study carried out at the University of Scranton concluded that HIIT can bolster weight loss in postmenopausal women. Participants assigned to HIIT – which can be completed in short bursts – were more likely to stick to their exercise programs. HIIT also led to twice as much weight loss when compared to traditional endurance training.

Make Exercise a Priority in Your Life

If you’re committed to weight loss, it’s time to make exercise a priority for 2019. Some people are hesitant to make a long-term commitment if they aren’t sure if a gym is the right fit. That’s why it’s so important to find a fitness center that offers the option of a short-term program.

Whether you’re new to working out or just looking to get back into a fitness routine, Medford Fitness offers short-term programs for everyone. Our dedicated personal trainers can meet with you to assess your needs and then give you the training and motivation you need to reach your goals.

Join our Weight Loss Battle

To ensure your New Year’s resolution is a success, we invite you to join us this January for our Weight Loss Battle. Take part in this exciting fitness challenge – even if you’re not a member.

Space is limited, so call (609) 654-1440 today for details. The winner of the Battle will receive an Allegro Sport bike donated by Wheelies!

Start Your Exercise Routine Today to Prevent Holiday Weight Gain Before it Strikes

Ah, the holiday season. The scent of pine, the glow of twinkling lights, time spent laughing with
loved ones. Creamy mashed potatoes. Spiced pumpkin pie. Crisp Wine. Homebaked cookies. Oh, the cookies – irresistible, gooey, mouthwatering cookies.

And then there’s the weight gain – those pesky pounds that sneak up in December and overstay
their welcome through the New Year. It’s not in your imagination either. Holiday weight gain is real, and once the pounds arrive, they’re hard to shake.

In 2016, researchers from three countries – the United States, Finland, and France – tracked holiday weight gain in 2,924 participants using wireless scales. The study, published in the New England Journal of Medicine, reported that participants gained a significant amount of weight in the ten days that followed Christmas as well as during other holidays like Thanksgiving and Easter.

For half of the participants, the additional weight persisted through summer.

Most people neglect healthy habits during the holiday season and then resolve to lose the pounds once the new year arrives. The result is a booming business for gyms during the month of January.

But what if there’s a better way? As with many health issues, prevention is the key to a healthy
physique. In the words of the researchers who studied holiday weight gain, “the less one gains, the less one then has to worry about trying to lose it.”

If you’re new to exercise, learning a new routine can be more challenging when the gym is crowded. To avoid the added stress of trying to locate equipment during the January rush, join
the gym in November or December before everyone else arrives.

In addition to weight loss, physical exercise can lower stress levels too. We all know how hectic the holidays can get. Shopping for everyone on your list, prepping your home for guests, and cooking to feed a crowd can be a lot to manage. Fortunately, by taking some time for aerobic exercise, you’ll be better able to handle whatever life throws your way.

By starting an exercise program before the holidays arrive, you can:
● kickstart your healthy exercise habit
● prevent weight gain during the holiday season
● beat the January gym crowds
● reduce holiday stress through exercise

Everyone deserves to relax and enjoy the holidays – and even to savor the tastes of the holiday season. You don’t need to crash diet or avoid treats altogether. As with any other time of the year, moderation – together with a healthy exercise routine – is key to healthy living during the holidays.

Our expert, friendly personal trainers here at Medford Fitness are ready to help you kickstart your fitness goals. Beat everyone else to the gym before the holidays arrive – and prevent weight gain before it starts. Whether you’re looking to prevent weight gain, lose weight, or just reduce your stress levels, reach out to one of our trainers by calling (609) 654-1440 today.

Don’t Risk It: Prevent ACL Injuries

Teens gain a lot from being part of a team. Through sports, they learn the value of dedication, hard work, and determination. They learn to work together toward a common goal. Their active lifestyles also keep them healthy and strong.

Unfortunately, competitive sports are not without risk. Anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) sprains and tears are two of the most common injuries for young athletes. A 2017 study found that over the past twenty years, the rate of ACL tears among children and teens has been increasing by approximately 2.3% each year. ACL injuries occur following certain movements common in sports. Sometimes they also result from a collision or hard land from a jump. Often, sufferers will hear an audible ‘pop’ at the time of injury. If your child is suspected of having an ACL injury, his or her doctor may perform an examination known as the Lachman test and order imaging. Usually, an ACL injury can be diagnosed using an x-ray, although occasionally an MRI may be needed for a more detailed view of the injury site. ACL injuries are assessed based on their severity, with Grade 1 being the most minor and Grade 3 being the most serious.

Symptoms of ACL injuries include:
● pain or discomfort
● swelling
● decreased range of motion
Sometimes, a minor ACL injury requires only conservative treatment and can resolve on its own with rest. Physical therapy can also help. In more severe cases, surgery may be necessary. Treatment costs for an ACL injury can jump as high as $17,000 – 25,000 – per injury! To make matters worse, osteoarthritis frequently follows an ACL tear or sprain. Recovery from an ACL injury can require time away from school and can even lower a student’s grade point average. Young people who suffer an ACL injury are also at high risk of suffering another ACL tear or sprain.

While ACL injuries can be painful or keep teens away from the sports they love, parents are often relieved to hear there are ways to prevent them. On October 22 at 6:30 pm, Breakthru Physical Therapy will present a free ACL Injury Prevention Workshop at Medford Fitness. If you have a child between the ages of 12 and 18 who plays football, basketball, soccer, or field hockey, we invite you to join us for this informative event. Don’t risk it: prevent ACL injuries before they happen. Our experts will explain how to ensure your teen has the lowest possible risk for injury while staying championship strong. Hope to see you there!

Click here to register for this event!

Sarah’s Journey

Medford Fitness member Sarah has bravely offered to share her struggles and triumphs in her journey towards better health and weight loss. She hopes that her journey inspires others to embark on their own journey!

 

Ever since I was very young, I struggled with my weight and my body image. Then, once I had 2 children in just over 2 years, it felt like my body was ruined and would be a lost cause. I struggled emotionally and the mental obstacles that I had to overcome were always harder than the physical. I could never keep a healthy diet, and the thought of regular exercise intimidated me so much that I was scared to even do it.

When I moved to Medford in September 2017, I knew that this could be a new opportunity for a fresh start, and the geographical change may inspire me to make other changes that I had been longing for in myself. Living right down the street from Medford Fitness, I decided to get a membership in hopes that this commitment would get me to work out regularly. Unfortunately, this did not happen. It was not until May of 2018 when I spoke with Sheena Potts and enrolled in small group training that I finally found a workout regimen that was challenging, but not overwhelming. The motivation from Sheena and the other members of the class was empowering.

My goal at first was simply to feel better. About my body image as well as my health. And I was happy to start “feeling” better fairly quickly after starting my group classes. I attend the gym at least 4 days a week, and those days are hands down the best days of my week. After about a month I started to see the changes in my body and so did others around me. And progressively, as I started to lose more weight, trim down and tone, I began to really feel the overall changes.

In 5 months, I have lost 43 lbs and have gone down 3 waist sizes. Clothes that I never thought I would ever squeeze into are now too big one me! My family loves my renewed energy and focus and could not be more proud. I owe so much to Sheena and Medford Fitness and I am eternally grateful for helping me find the new me!

5 Reasons To Meet With A Personal Trainer

 

If you’re ready to exercise, change your workout, or hire a personal trainer, contact Medford Fitness located in Medford, New Jersey to learn more about our personal training gurus

 

 

If going to the gym for the first time scares you, you’re not alone. You walk in feeling like the new kid in class, bewildered by what you see. The unfamiliar machines look more like torture devices, and everyone else seems to have it all figured out. Whether you’re new to the gym or have years of athletic experience, you can probably benefit from meeting with a qualified personal trainer.

 

Starting any new exercise regimen can be intimidating. Even seasoned gym goers can feel confused or alone when beginning a routine or setting new goals. People who have been working out for years sometimes need to brush up on their form and return to the experts to finetune their routines.

 

A personal trainer will:

HELP PREVENT INJURY: When done correctly, exercise delivers benefits that can’t be beat – including improved mental health, better sleep, and greater self-confidence. Unfortunately, exercise can have a downside, which is its potential for injury. Fear not: a personal trainer can teach you how to work out safely, ensure you’re using proper form, and guide you toward appropriate exercises for your current skill level.

 

MAKE YOU FEEL AT HOME: Even the boldest among us can feel shy when walking into a new place filled with strangers. The good news is you don’t have to jump in alone. A personal trainer can help you feel acclimated to your new environment, guide you on a tour of the gym, and orient you to the equipment you’ll be using. During your first appointment, your trainer will also discuss any limitations you may have, including knee or back pain. He or she can help ease your transition into exercise.

 

HOLD YOU ACCOUNTABLE:When you only have yourself to answer to, it’s easy to make excuses for skipping your workout. You’re more likely to stick to an exercise plan when you know you have an appointment with a trainer. The right personal trainer does more than just teach – he or she will also motivate and inspire you to reach your goals. Meeting with a trainer once or twice a week will also condition you to a new habit of exercise you can continue once your sessions end. Some research even suggests that working with a personal trainer can positively affect the way you think about physical activity.

 

SET THE RIGHT GOALS: Speaking of goals, how do you know you’re setting the right ones?  A personal trainer can answer that question and help you set goals that are S.M.A.R.T.: Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant, and Timely. A “S.M.A.R.T.” goal is achievable but challenging, and most importantly, goals are unique to everyone. Your trainer can assess your reasons for working out, while taking into account any health issues or limitations and adapt your workout goals accordingly.

 

WON’T BREAK THE BANK: Some people think of personal training as an expensive endeavor. Medford Fitness strives to make physical activity safe, fun, and affordable. All new members receive a free one-on-one fitness consultation with a personal trainer. For the month of July, we’re also offering two free personal training sessions for a limited time, no membership required

 

At Medford Fitness, our personal trainers are passionate about exercise and helping people reach their goals. Whether you’re looking to lose weight, improve your health, or become a better athlete, reach out to one of our trainers by calling (609) 654-1440 for more information and to register for your two free personal training sessions.

How To Stay In Shape When Sports Season Ends

 

It’s the end of the school year, and the hazy, lazy days of summer will be here before we know it. For athletes, summer often means less practices to attend. Without your teammates pushing you to achieve every day, it can be hard to stay in shape.

 

Unfortunately, when you stop exercising, you often start to lose a significant amount of the strength and endurance you trained so hard for all year. When you’re no longer training, you could start losing muscle mass and cardio endurance in as little as three weeks!

 

Now for the good news: there are simple steps you can take to make sure you stay in shape all summer long. Since athletic gains can so quickly be lost, here at Medford Fitness we’ve set up a special summer Sports Training Clinic just for teen athletes. Call today to reserve your spot, and check out a few more of our favorite ways to stay in shape:

 

Recruit a friend.

Working out in the summer doesn’t have to be a solitary activity. Exercise is healthy, but so is hanging out with friends. When you work out with a partner,  you not only you enjoy each other’s company, but you can also hold each other accountable. In fact, one study conducted in 2016 found that people who exercise with a “gym buddy” exercise more than those who prefer to workout alone!  If you own an Apple watch, you can even challenge each other through the watch’s built-in fitness app.

 

Reward yourself.

We get it: motivating yourself to hit the gym isn’t always easy, especially during the summer months. If motivation is a problem for you, think of a way to reward yourself for exercise. Members at Medford Fitness enjoy free WiFi, so if you prefer to build your reward into your gym time, you can use your smartphone, tablet, or the built-in screens on our treadmills to binge your favorite shows while you workout! You can even indulge in a tasty and healthy post-workout smoothie at the re:fresh Recovery Bar and Cafe located right inside Medford Fitness.

 

Hit the trails.

If you love summer sunshine, consider using the great outdoors to complete your cardio routine. Running, biking, and kayaking all allow you to increase your heart rate while enjoying the great outdoors at the same time. Bonus: even a short time spent outside can lead to serious benefits for your mood, memory, and even attention. After your cardio routine, make sure you work in some strength training, too. If you live close enough, you can even walk, jog, or bike to Medford Fitness and complete your resistance training here. Medford is the perfect place to enjoy nature!

 

Join Our Sports Training Clinic.

Coach Tim Welsh, a Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist (CSCS) will head up an athletic performance training clinic this summer for athletes ages 12-18. During the six-week program, you’ll learn effective sprinting fundamentals, safe lifting techniques to increase speed, and even proper skills associated with your sport. The clinic will run on Monday’s from 6:00 – 6:45 or 7:00 – 7:45 from June 25th to July 30th, and space is limited. Call us today at (609) 654-1440 to reserve your spot!

 

Summer might be a time for relaxation, but it doesn’t have to be time wasted. Staying fit when school’s out can take as little as an hour or two each week of your time. When sports’ season starts again, you’ll thank yourself for staying so disciplined all year long.

5 Benefits Of Adding This Fruit To Your Smoothie

Here in New Jersey, the blueberry season will be here before we know it. Their sweet flavor is only one reason to love blueberries. It turns out these juicy berries also provide some pretty sweet health benefits, too!

Add blueberries to your home smoothies or order a freshly made blueberry smoothie at the re:fresh Recovery Bar and Cafe inside Medford Fitness for these 5 health benefits:

 

1. Drink Your Antioxidants

Antioxidants help protect our bodies against oxidation and damage from free radicals. They can also fight inflammation in the body. Blueberries pack a powerful antioxidant punch, providing greater cellular antioxidant activity (CAA) than most other fruits and vegetables.

 

2. Lower Your Cholesterol

If you’re looking for an additional way to lower your cholesterol, blueberries can be a helpful addition to your diet. Consumption of blueberries may help decrease LDL cholesterol, which has been linked to heart disease.

 

3. Protect Your Heart

Blueberries contain flavonoids called ‘anthocyanins.’ Although anthocyanins have not been proven to affect cardiovascular health, some studies suggest they may help to prevent a heart attack.

 

4. Keep Your Blood Sugar Down 

While factors like ripeness can affect a fruit’s sugar content, the glycemic index (GI) of blueberries is estimated to be around 53. Fruits and vegetables with a GI lower than 55 have a relatively small effect on blood glucose levels.  The low glycemic load of blueberries may be of benefit to people suffering from Type 2 diabetes.

 

5. Stay Hydrated Post-Workout 

After a workout, your body needs to refuel. Your post-workout routine should include adequate intake of water. Blueberries contain about 85% water, making them a refreshing way to hydrate your body.

 

Kid’s Yoga and Mindfulness

Can Mindfulness Help Kids Thrive? Science Suggests It Can

Magazine covers and news reports tout the benefits of mindfulness for everything from easing chronic pain to improving work performance. Recent research suggests it might benefit kids, too. Could mindfulness help your child?

What Is Mindfulness, Exactly?

Mindfulness can be practiced through a variety of means, including meditation, Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy (MBCT), and yoga. A person practicing mindfulness will often use a physical focal point to center his or her self in the present moment. Usually, that center point is the breath.

Children’s natural propensity for physical activity has led some researchers to conclude that mindfulness-based programs that include a physical component (like yoga) may be more effective than sedentary mindfulness programs. Yoga may even be more effective than other forms of exercise for treating anger and depression in adolescents.

How Can Mindfulness Help Kids?

You might assume mindfulness is too complex for kids to understand, but recent research suggests otherwise. In fact, some studies have shown children both capable and open to learning the concept. Moreover, a growing body of research suggests mindfulness may have several benefits for kids, including:

Treating Externalizing Disorders: In 2008, researchers conducted mindfulness training on a group of adolescents diagnosed with varying disorders, including oppositional-defiant disorder, autism spectrum disorder, and attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). Prior to the start of the study, all of the children displayed externalizing behaviors, which occur when individuals direct their negative emotions outward. People with externalizing disorders display verbal or physical aggression toward other people or objects in their environment.

Following the eight-week mindfulness training program, the adolescents reported improved ability to achieve their personal goals as well as increased happiness. The children’s parents reported not only improvement in their children’s goals, but interestingly – improvement on the parents’ goals as well. Children and their parents also reported improvements in areas like attention, self-control, and externalizing behaviors.

Reducing Anxiety: Unfortunately, one in eight children in America suffer from an anxiety-related disorder. Often, anxiety leads to more than just discomfort. Children with untreated anxiety disorders are more likely to suffer from substance abuse issues and poor academic performance.

A 2014 meta-analysis of current research on mindfulness meditation found some evidence that mindfulness can alleviate anxiety-related symptoms in adults. Mindfulness may provide an effective treatment for people suffering from anxiety, without the risks sometimes associated with pharmacologic treatment.

But can the same be said for children who practice mindfulness? Some research suggests so. The results of a small 2005 study showed mindfulness potentially helpful for the treatment of anxiety in children.

Increasing Compassion And Empathy: Some research suggests mindfulness meditation can lead to increased compassion in adults. Interestingly, adults who undergo mindfulness training often demonstrate not only more compassion toward others, but also greater self-compassion.

In 2015, researchers set out to answer whether mindfulness could also lead to increased compassion in children. The researchers randomly assigned a group of fourth and fifth graders to either a mindfulness-based social and emotional learning (SEL) program or to a social responsibility program that did not include mindfulness.

Following completion of the two programs, children in the SEL program demonstrated significant improvements in a number of areas, including empathy. These kids also engaged in more pro-social behaviors, which refers to actions performed for the benefit of others. Children in the SEL program were also perceived by their peers as more pro-social than children who completed the social responsibility program. Moreover, kids in the SEL program also demonstrated improvements in their school self-concept, suggesting greater compassion toward themselves, too.

While it may not be for everyone, it’s clear mindfulness will continue to help many people – including kids. With so much anecdotal evidence backed by scientific research, we now know that mindfulness has the potential to help kids thrive. Mindfulness offers a number of benefits, in addition to treating externalizing disorders, relieving anxiety, and increasing empathy. And if you decide to practice mindfulness or yoga, you may find your own improved state of calm strengthens your parent-child relationship. Your child just might “catch” your calm, too!

Here at Medford Fitness, we offer a number of children’s programs designed to help kids thrive, including yoga for children ages five through ten. Kids’ yoga is held on Wednesdays from 4:15 to 5:00 pm.

Call (609) 654-1440 today for a FREE week trial of kids’ yoga!

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