Archive for November, 2008

After elimination, Amy offers advice for others

Thursday, November 27th, 2008

“Biggest Loser” contestants Amy and Shellay are clients at the CoachMeFit studio in Birmingham, MI.  They work out with the owners of the studio, Derek and Kerrie DiGiovanni.

“Biggest Loser” airs Tuesday’s at 8:00pm on NBC.

Last night, Amy was voted off the show. Eager to stay at the ranch and continue the rugged regime, she would now have to go it alone. Instead of a TV star for a trainer she would look to Derek at the local CoachMeFit to “kick butt.” It’s working. Her weight continues to go down.

Amy has some advice for people who are seriously over weight but don’t have the luxury of a stay at the Biggest Loser ranch to help them.

    1) Make exercise a priority every day. If there is something else you want to do, tell yourself that you can’t do it until you do your cardio, or weights.
    2) Ideally find a “workout buddy” who is committed to exercising with you regularly. Of course, a personal trainer is your best support system.
    3) Diets alone don’t work.
    4) Realize that many physical symptoms—aching legs and feet, difficulty breathing, and a host of medical problems—are the result of your weight, and you can be free of them.
    5) Set small attainable goals, achieve them, and set more small goals. If you never exercise, don’t start with a goal of working out every day. You’re likely to fail, and give up completely.

This week’s pay-off for Amy was going to lunch with friends she used to work with and finding that many didn’t recognize her. Priceless.

In case you are curious … Amy and Shellay won’t be indulging in a 4,000-calorie (the average intake of an adult at Thanksgiving dinner) eating frenzy this Thanksgiving. They are eating turkey breast, salad, and cauliflower mashed “potatoes.”

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Amy Dropping Pounds and Going Strong

Friday, November 21st, 2008

“Biggest Loser” contestants Amy and Shellay are clients at the CoachMeFit studio in Birmingham, MI.  They work out with the owners of the studio, Derek and Kerrie DiGiovanni.

“Biggest Loser” airs Tuesday’s at 8:00pm on NBC.

Nothing celebrates losing a lot of weight like selling all your “fat” clothes in a garage sale. That’s exactly what Amy and Shellay did, vowing that they are so over being overweight.

Amy and her Personal Trainer, Derek

Amy and her Personal Trainer, Derek

If Amy reaches her goal, she’ll be wearing a size-10 dress for the season finale. On Tuesday’s program Amy beat out all other contestants in terms of the greatest percentage of weight loss in a week. She lost 8 lbs for a total weight loss of 66 lbs.

Shellay is on-track to don a size 6 little black dress when she returns. Shellay admits that exercising for hours every day is getting tougher. Boredom, burnout … that’s inevitable when all day, every day for the last six months you’ve been counting every calorie you burn. It’s her personal training sessions that keep her enthused. “I always feel really good after working out with Derek. Sure, I’m exhausted, but my stress and any negative feelings are gone.”

Shellay believes that if you exercise infrequently, you can convince yourself you’ve reached your limit although your body is far from it. But with a good personal trainer you find you are capable of more than you imagined. “CoachMeFit is full of positive energy. I cross paths week after week with the same people and can see their progress.

I would tell anyone who is struggling with losing weight to in invest in personal training, even a few times a month. It would be hard to put a price on the benefits.”

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Personal Training Success Story

Thursday, November 20th, 2008

Everybody has different reasons for working out. Some of our clients want to lose inches and pounds, some want to improve their 5k times, and some simply want help improving the quality of their lives. Here at the CoachMeFit studio in Grand Rapids, we have seen success in many ways for our clients, and recently, we helped one of them enjoy the trip of her lifetime.

Ann Marie came to us looking to lose a few inches and pounds, but as we began to achieve those milestones, her goals began to change. Ann Marie scheduled a trip to Italy with her sister. This trip was going to cover a lot of beautiful territory they had wanted to visit their whole lives, and it was going to cover that ground mostly on foot. Ann Marie was worried that given her age and weight she would not be able to keep up with the pack or see all of the things she wanted to. We trained for several weeks with her trip to Italy specifically in mind. We focused on strength training with her lower body and maintaining it’s flexibility, as well as getting her heart and lungs ready for the cardiovascular demands.

Ann Marie returned home from her trip to Italy with a large smile on her face when she walked back in to the studio to resume her training. She was able to not only keep up with the pack, but said she often found herself waiting for them. Not once was she tired or sore and not once did her health keep her from seeing anything she wanted to see. She was very thankful that she put in the physical work that was necessary for her trip, and she was glad that her trainer at CoachMefit was able to help her do so.

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Amy’s Workout Regime

Friday, November 14th, 2008
CoachMeFit Birmingham Owner, Derek DiGiovanni, guides Amy through one of her workouts

“Biggest Loser” contestants Amy and Shellay are clients at the CoachMeFit studio in Birmingham, MI.  They work out with the owners of the studio, Derek and Kerrie DiGiovanni.

“Biggest Loser” airs Tuesday’s at 8:00pm on NBC.

“I’ll never go back to that life,” says a determined Amy referring to the years when she never, ever exercised, dieted off and on, and gained weight year after year. “I knew very little about the Biggest Loser right up to the day I tried out for the show. I did know that if I was ever going to change my life, this was my chance.”

Living on the Biggest Loser’s ranch where she learned the importance of exercise and how to eat right transformed Amy. By Tuesday’s show Amy had lost 58 pounds — the equivalent of 24% of her body weight. And the hard work continues. At CoachMeFit she warms up, powers through a 45 – 60 minute cardio workout on a combination of elliptical, treadmill and bike and then completes a 45 – 50 minute weight circuit and cools down. She experiences some muscle soreness after weight training, but it doesn’t bother her. “It’s a sign I worked hard.” The weight training builds muscle tone to add firmness to her smaller shape. The rest of her training is on her own in the form of gym workouts and hours of walking.

Training with Derek or Kerrie helps Amy feel grounded and committed. Like her workouts at the Biggest Loser ranch, the sessions are serious business. Her trainers know that Amy is in it to win.

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Amy’s Hardwork Paying Off

Wednesday, November 5th, 2008

“Biggest Loser” contestants Amy and Shellay are clients at the CoachMeFit studio in Birmingham, MI.  They work out with the Owners of the studio, Derek and Kerrie DiGiovanni.

“Biggest Loser” airs Tuesday’s at 8:00pm on NBC.

“The energy goes right out of me when I don’t exercise. That’s a real eye-opener,” Shellay observed after a family funeral and other obligations made it impossible to keep up her intense exercise regimen this past week. Contrary to how she might have expected to feel after dramatically cutting down on exercise, Shellay admits she “felt exhausted.”

Amy’s hard work is really paying off. When Biggest Loser last aired two weeks ago, she ranked number one – she had lost the greatest percentage of body fat of any of the contestants. From Shellay’s perspective, this has made as big a change in her attitude as in her body. “She is so much happier now.”

Shellay has mentioned before that she tried all kinds of diets from the time she was a teenager. It wasn’t until Biggest Loser that she realized the role of exercise in losing weight. If you doubt the extremes to which she went to lose weight, check this out — Shellay, her mom, aunt, and cousin all tried a controversial diet that involved receiving injections of animal placenta. Imagine that even as a teenager, Shellay was desperately searching for a way to lose weight, just like her mom.

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Keeping Fit During Pregnancy

Wednesday, November 5th, 2008

By: Jen Boyce, Manager, CoachMeFit Ann Arbor, MI

Keeping fit during pregnancy is vital for your (and your baby’s) health and well-being. It improves blood flow to the muscles and also helps your body to use glucose more effectively, which helps reduce the risk of diabetes. James Clapp, M.D, states that pregnant women who exercised delivered a healthier baby with a stronger fetal heart rate. Even more compelling is the fact that of the women who exercised, time spent in labor was shortened by about a third, with 65% of the women delivering in four hours or less.  Start slowly. Doing 20-30 minutes a day, up to five times a week is adequate.  The following exercises are especially good to get your body ready for labor.

KEGEL EXERCISES
Start with Kegel exercises, which help tone your pelvic floor muscles. Simply tighten your pelvic muscles as if you’re stopping your stream of urine. Try it for five seconds at a time, four or five times in a row. Work up to keeping the muscles contracted for 10 seconds at a time, relaxing for 10 seconds between contractions. Aim for at least three sets of 10 repetitions a day. You can do Kegels while standing, sitting or lying down.

TAILOR SITTING OR BUTTERFLY STRETCH
The tailor sitting position stretches the muscles in your thighs and pelvis. It also improves your posture, keeps your pelvic joints flexible and increases blood flow to your lower body.
To practice tailor sitting, sit on the floor with your back straight. Bring the bottoms of your feet together, pull your heels toward your groin and gently drop your knees. You’ll feel a stretch in your inner thighs. Try tailor sitting anytime you’re able to sit on the floor.

If it’s difficult to sit in this position, use a wall to support your back or place cushions under each thigh. Remember to keep your back straight.

LOW BACK STRETCH
Stretching the muscles in your lower back can help relieve backaches during pregnancy and labor.
Rest on your hands and knees with your head in line with your back. Pull in your stomach, rounding your back slightly. Hold the position for several seconds. Then relax your stomach and back, keeping your back as flat as possible. Don’t let your back sag. Repeat several times. Gradually work up to 10 repetitions.

PELVIC TILT
You can also stretch the muscles in your lower back while standing. Lay on the floor face up, your feet about shoulder-width apart. Then push your pelvis upward. Repeat several times.

SQUAT
Squatting during labor — even for short amounts of time — helps open your pelvic outlet and allows more room for your baby to descend. Practicing squats now will make it easier to squat during labor.
Stand with your feet slightly greater than shoulder-width apart and your toes pointing forward. Slowly descend, bending through the hips, knees and ankles, making sure your shoulders stay up. Keep your heels flat on the floor. Stop when your knees reach a 90-degree angle. If you can’t bend your knees to a 90-degree angle, simply go as low as you can. Then return to the starting position. Repeat several times. Gradually work up to 10 repetitions.

BALL SQUATS
For a twist on standard squats, try these;
Stand up straight with a fitness ball behind the small of your back and against the wall, your feet about shoulder-width apart. Slide down the wall until you’re in a sitting position, then slowly slide back up. Repeat several times. Gradually work up to 10 repetitions.

SWIMMING
Swimming is good to take the weight of your belly off of your back and legs.

A COUPLE OF TIPS TO FOLLOW:
-Monitor your heart rate and breathing. As a general rule, your heart rate should not exceed 140 beats/minute.
-In the last trimester, avoid ballistic movements, such as jumping or running.
-Avoid exercising at extreme altitude or in hot, humid environments.
-Most of all, drink plenty of water.

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