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NIFS Healthy Living Blog

Trudy Coler

Recent Posts by Trudy Coler:

“Alice & Chains” Part 2: Making Your Training Functional

When we last left Alice (aka you), we provided her with two kinetic chains to rescue her from the mythical land of functional training. Now that I have established a solid base to build from, I can hone in on what actually makes moving functional, and that is movement. (I know, shocking isn’t it?)

The Patterns of Human MovementDSC04021n

Basic human movement is pretty much divided into seven different patterns. As stated in Part 1,
these patterns can affect one another and be built onto one another. The seven movement patterns are the following:

  • Squat
  • Hinge
  • Lunge
  • Push
  • Pull
  • Single-leg balance
  • Rotary/core stability

Taking the definition of functional training discussed earlier (to train or restore function in movement), these are the movements I was referring to. Functional training should revolve around making these basic movement patterns better. That’s it, end of story? There are many aspects that can go into a functional movement program such as heavy strength training, metabolic acceleration work, core stability, and much more. But the program’s components should always point back to restoring and training the function of these patterns.

Pairing Functional Movements

When programming a strength-training workout, to train or restore function in movement, I like to pair movements together. This will add to the training effect and save you time as well. There are a number of ways to pair these basic movements together. Keep in mind two things when pairing up movement: the kinetic chains being trained, and the residual fatigue of staying on one side (or chain) of the body. Simply put, don’t pair movements that occur on the same side of the body.

Here are some of my favorites:kettlebell

  • Kettlebell Swing (Posterior Chain/Hinge) and Push-up (Anterior Chain/Push)
  • Kettlebell Goblet Squat (Anterior Chain/Squat) and TRX Row (Posterior Chain/Pull)
  • Box Step-up (Anterior Chain/Single Leg Balance) and Mountain Climbers (Rotary/Core Stability)
  • Chin-up (Posterior Chain/Pull) and Reverse Lunge (Anterior Chain/Lunge)

If you were to complete these movements I listed for 10 reps each and for 3 sets with moderate to heavy weight (while keeping proper movement mechanics), you would have yourself a well- founded functional training workout. If you forget everything I have told you, just remember this:

Do something for the legs, do one push, one pull, and a core exercise!

So there you have it, the dirty on functional training. Please keep in mind that I have only scratched the surface of this topic. I can’t stress enough the importance of knowing how you are currently moving so you can have the best plan of attack in your training.

Schedule a Functional Movement Screen with us today and know the metrics that matter.

Tony Maloney is NIFS’ Fitness Center Manager and leads Group Training Sunday through Thursday. Follow Tony on Facebook.

Topics: NIFS fitness center workouts functional training injury prevention muscles kettlebell TRX

Thomas' Corner: Do Crunches Guarantee “Six-Pack Abs”?

If you could name one body part that you’d like to improve, most people would agree its their abdominals area. 460455295The ideal, desired image of six-pack abs plastered on the cover of every magazine tells us so…right? To get where you want to be, you will have to have a game plan. Ten thousand crunches per day should do the trick, right? Well not necessarily.  

While crunches do strengthen core muscles (including abdominals and hip flexors), they do not give you a 100 percent guarantee of having six-pack abs. You need to treat abdominal muscles like other muscles, they will naturally get stronger (along with the rest of your body).

You may say, “Thomas, I was born without abdominals, HELP!” Rest assured, you have abdominal muscles; they are most likely there or else you would not be able to get out of bed, walk down the hallway, or anything else, for that matter. To get the abs to show, you need to burn more calories than you consume through exercise and nutrition. This can be done in various combinations, but the best results come when you are doing sensible workouts and eating sensible meals day in and day out consistently. In doing this, you will see overall body fat loss, resulting in your muscle definition being more transparent.

Challenge your core in new ways. Increase intensity rather than reps (20 reps per set is normal), and try new exercises and tools to keep your workout fresh. Remember, to see the results you want to see, focus on nutrition every day and have a well-rounded game plan in the gym. Contact a registered dietitian at NIFS to get more information on proper nutrition and a fitness specialist to prescribe new, challenging core exercises.

Need help getting started? Schedule a free fitness assessment today and we'll help get you started on a fitness routine that works for you.

Free Fitness Assessment

Evolve and rejoice,

This blog was written by Thomas Livengood, Health Fitness Specialist at NIFS. To find out more about the NIFS bloggers click here.

Topics: NIFS nutrition fitness center Thomas' Corner core

SLIM IT: Team "Cast-A-Weighs" Utilized Group Fitness Classes

First off I need to say how proud of our team, the “Cast-A-Weighs” I am! They always give 110% no matter what craziness I throw at them. Coming into Slim It I was the new kid, having only started working here a month steve_team_picearlier. When I was asked to take a Slim It team I said “sure, what’s a Slim It team?”

Being the Group Fitness Coordinator you know I would end up throwing some of the classes into the mix of training. In addition to the regular style of small group training we also added in Bodypump™, CX Worx™ and a little Bodycombat™. I wasn’t sure how this would go over, but now feel confident that the Cast-A-weighs will without a doubt continue their workouts utilizing our amazing group fitness schedule and group training options.

At first look all classes and training programs look different and unique, but at the core many hold several things in common. The first is the effectiveness of the workouts. No one wants to come into the gym day after day and not see the results from their hard work. Every program at NIFS is designed to give you the maximum results for the workout time*. Another important aspect of group training is the accountability factor. As Slim It participants have seen, you instantly have a group of people you are accountaible to and everyone is responsible for  Slim-It-logo2motivating one another; even on days you felt like staying in bed. Finally, and most importantly, is the “fun factor”! Let’s face it, exercise is challenging! No matter how great the workout is, if you aren’t having a good time doing it odds are you will stop. Here at the NIFS we are a community of people with common goals and together we can all achieve those goals!

Don't forget the Slim It Finale and spring launch is coming next Monday 4/28. This is going to be an amazing workout and celebration of all your hard work this year in Slim It. Its also a chance to try a variety of workouts, meet new people and plan out your ongoing fitness routine. As for the Cast-A-Weighs, they will not only be participating in the group fitness classes that night, but will be helping all of the Slim It participants in leading by example! The students will become the teachers! I can’t wait!!

*Weight loss claims and/or individual results vary and are not guaranteed.

Regardless of fitness level or goals, almost every member at NIFS could benefit from Group Training or enrolling in a NIFS program. See our Group Fitness Schedule for more information on classes and programming. If you are interested in trying a small group or HIT training session contact Tony Maloney today to get started!

This blog was written by Steve Koebcke, NIFS Group Fitness Coordinator. Learn more about the NIFS bloggers.

Topics: exercise weight loss group fitness group training challenge strength

Slim It to Win It: Shelli's Hard Bellies

This is my first year being a Slim-it to Win–It coach and my team, Shelli’s Hard Bellies, and I are having a blast!shelli-team-picture  Over the past several weeks we have had some ups and downs with teammates being sick and/or injured but no one has given up!

During this program I have tried to spice up each workout utilizing the equipment all over the gym. My team hasn’t loved the sleds at times but understands the importance and major benefits of them.

One of my favorite workouts I have done with Shelli’s Hard Bellies is the DOC (Desk of Cards) workout or “The Card Game.” I love this because it is fun to do and can be done with any age and ability level. It is also a great way to mix strength training and cardio into one kick butt workout.

Start with a deck of cards and give each suit an exercise.  Have fun with this, you could choose all body weight exercises, all strength exercises or list two options for each suit. 

Examples are as follow:
Diamonds: Push Ups
Spades: Goblet Squats (Add Jump)
Hearts: TRX or Barbell Row
Clubs: Push Press

When it comes to the face cards, either simply make Jack=11, Queen=12, King=13 & Ace=14 or make it even harder! I usually do the indicated amounts plus extra exercises on top of it all. Face card are worth more so why wouldn’t they be the hardest part of the workout.  Slim-It-logo2

The last time we played I made Ace the exercise listed above PLUS jog 1 lap around the In door track, King, as listed, PLUS 30 seconds of plank, Queen, as listed, PLUS 30 seconds of Mt. Climbers, leaving Jack as listed, PLUS 10 Burpees. I left the jokers in there too and that indicated a small rest period where the team could grab some water.

Needless to say, this was a tough workout but they loved it! I plan to do the DOC workout again before the end of the program but all the exercises will be different so ensure the element of surprise!


Thanks, Hard Bellies, for working hard throughout this entire program!
I hope to see you all consistently after Slim-it to Win-it wraps up to ensure continued results.

Training with a group is a proven strategy for sticking with a workout routine and is more economical than one-on-one training. If you are interested in trying a small group or large group training session contact Tony Maloney today to get started!

This blog was written by Shelli Kopetsky, NIFS Heath Fitness Instructor. Learn more about the NIFS bloggers.
 

Topics: exercise weight loss workout personal training team training

NIFS SLIM IT TO WIN IT: Team Tank the Plankers!

Another year of Slim-It to Win It and team “Tank the Plankers” are holding strong! Five of the biggest highlights for the team are the following:steph-team-pic

  • Over half of the team has 100 percent attendance.
  • Everyone can hold a plank for at least 45 seconds.
  • Everyone has completed their food logs and made adjustments according to Angie’s feedback.
  • Everyone has completed their Functional Movement Screen and started completing their correctives.
  • Everyone has a great attitude every day.

Along with all of these great things, the team has completed  a wide variety of workouts successfully. One workout that was recently completed was the Partner 100 workout using the  TRX. The workout runs as follows. One partner completes one lap around the indoor track while  the other counts up to 100 reps of the exercise before proceeding to the next one. The exercises completed are listed here:

  • 100 TRX Chest PressSlim-It-logo2
  • 100 TRX 2-count Mountain Climbers
  • 100 TRX Rows
  • 100 TRX Squats

Although it was a very challenging workout both mentally and physically, everyone conquered it and even had a little energy left at the end to finish up with a sled push relay on the sprint lanes!

I will be sad once the program concludes because I feel very privileged to have the opportunity to work with this fun and hardworking group twice a week, but I also cannot wait to see how much progress they have made with all of their health and fitness goals going into this program.

KEEP UP THE GOOD WORK, PLANKERS!

Training with a group is a proven strategy for sticking with a workout routine and is more economical than one-on-one training. If you are interested in trying a small group or large group training session contact Tony Maloney today to get started!

This blog was written by Stephanie Kaiser, NIFS Heath Fitness Instructor. Learn more about the NIFS bloggers.

Topics: nutrition group fitness group training nifs staff functional training NIFS programs Slim It to Win It TRX

NIFS SLIM IT TO WIN IT: Team “No Judgment”

Hey there, Fit Family! This is my second year coaching a team, and I have to say it has been just as exciting as the first. Team “No Judgment” has been working hard since week 1 with excellent attendance, high energy duringSlim it team workouts, and amazing attitudes. These characteristics fit right into the formula for success.

What excites me the most about my team is that they are driven to succeed and see real fat-loss results.

Inspired by Martin Rooney’s Metabolic Training

Martin Rooney said it best: “To be successful in life you must commit. If you freeze, you lose. There should be no halfway in anything you do.” Rooney is a fitness professional whose work focuses mainly on metabolic training, which relates to the idea of improving the work capacity of our cardiovascular system in a way that works more efficiently. I like to train this way because it helps you burn fat, build muscle, and improve stamina all at the same time! My team will tell you, it is challenging and requires a lot of hard work, but it’s also gratifying to complete each and every workout.

Another reason for training the metabolic system is that the majority of the exercises are dynamic and involve movement patterns that are common in our daily routine. An example would be the squat pattern because it mimics standing up from a chair or getting in and out of a car, which we all do on a regular basis.

The Fun Factor

Lastly, training the metabolic system should be hard, but it should also deliver a fun factor as well. You’re more likely to repeat a single workout when you leave the last workout having fun and feeling great about your accomplishments. So don’t forget, metabolic training is efficient and effective, and while it’s not easy, it can be Slim-It-logo2fun!

Lastly, good luck to all other Slim-It to Win It teams as we have one week left. The finish line is near! Try your best to stay committed to your teams, your goals, and most importantly yourself!

Regardless of fitness level or goals, almost every member at NIFS could benefit from Group Training or enrolling in a NIFS program. I highly recommend taking the leap! If you are interested in trying a small group or HIT training session contact Tony Maloney today to get started!

This blog was written by Cara Hartman, NIFS Heath Fitness Instructor. Learn more about the NIFS bloggers.

Topics: NIFS fitness weight loss workouts NIFS programs metabolism Slim It to Win It

NIFS SLIM IT TO WIN IT: Weapons of Mass Reduction

I’m pleased to introduce to you my second Slim It to Win It group, Weapons of Mass Reduction. It started out as a second team that I took on due to the interest of members during the 6am time frame. It has been a great journey so far. They have started to weigh in halfway through the program and are describe the imagechallenged every other week with homework. With a wide variety of exercises and partner workouts, they continue to grow as a team and as individuals. They will continue to pursue their goals in the Slim It program. I hope they can take away this experience and finish the program strong and leave with personal growth of fitness and health.

Name: Daniel Feinstein

Share your story or a bit about yourself in a few sentences:

Losing weight and maintaining a healthy lifestyle can be extremely challenging. For me, the exercise piece of the puzzle comes relatively easily; however, I’ve struggled making well-balanced food choices. I am easily tempted by a sporting event or a night on the town, which tends to lead to poor choices.

NIFS programs that you participated in: Summer Showdown, Maintain Not Gain, Slim It to Win It

Why did you join this program?NIFS slim it

To win three free months of NIFS membership! All joking aside, I joined for several reasons: to bring a sense of accountability for my fitness results (both to myself and to my team), to learn more about living and maintaining a healthy lifestyle, to meet new friends, and to experience training sessions specifically designed to target fat loss.

Something you have enjoyed:

I really enjoy group training. It fosters an environment where teammates encourage and push each other, oftentimes outside of typical comfort zones.

Something you have learned or something that surprised you:

Not specifically something I’ve learned during Slim It to Win It, but this program helped remind me how important a well-balanced diet is to achieving certain fitness goals (especially fat loss). As I grow older and my metabolism slows, the more I realize how difficult (or nearly impossible) it is to offset poor diet choices by working harder in the gym. 

Favorite exercise from one of the workouts?

I do not have a favorite exercise; however, I really enjoy the fact that each workout is unique and incorporates several themes into one 60-minute session. So far, a typical workout has included dynamic warm-up, core, strength, metabolic, and cool-down.

What accomplishments have you achieved during your training program for Slim It to Win It (or do you hope to achieve)?

I hope to lose a little fat, meet friends, and develop healthy habits.*

What struggles have you encountered? Tips you have learned along the way?

I typically struggle with maintaining a “clean” diet. Using MyFitnessPal to log meals has helped tremendously. In general, making smart meal choices can be difficult when eating off of a menu. Because of this, I have found that planning and preparing my meals (and snacks) really helps.

How do you stay motivated?

I really enjoy working out, but the following tips help me stay motivated:

  • Schedule: I view working out as part of my daily schedule; of course, rest days are planned. In any given week I have a schedule with an idea of the type of workout planned each day. I enjoy working out first thing in the morning. My workday can be hectic and exhausting; working out in the morning leaves one less thing to worry about.
  • Variety: Variety also plays a big role in staying motivated. I rarely do the same exact workout twice and like to include challenges as part of my workout.
  • Goal setting: When setting goals, I rarely make goals related to my physical appearance (maybe I should!). My goals are more fitness related, such as row 2000m in less than XX minutes, do XX pull-ups, et cetera. I find myself continually adjusting my goals as skills and fitness improve.

    *Weight loss claims and/or individual results vary and are not guaranteed.
Regardless of fitness level or goals, almost every member at NIFS could benefit from Group Training or enrolling in a NIFS program. I highly recommend taking the leap! If you are interested in trying a small group or HIT training session contact Tony Maloney today to get started!

Like what you've just read? Click here to subscribe to our blog!

This blog was written by Crystal Belen, NIFS Heath Fitness Instructor. Learn more about the NIFS bloggers.

Topics: goal setting weight loss group fitness workouts healthy eating group training NIFS programs Slim It to Win It

SLIM IT TO WIN IT: Crystal’s Team

Greetings everyone! Slim It thus far has been an exciting experience for me and for both of my teams! I have been blessed with having not only one but two teams due to the high number of requests from individuals wanting to join this year. I will highlight my Monday and Friday team this week. Be sure to look out for my blog about my Tuesday and Thursday team in the near future.Slim It

My M/F team is doing a great job with the exercises that I have been giving them and familiarizing themselves with the structure of our workouts. A few of them have worked with me before in previous programs or through personal training. It is nice to see familiar faces and at the same time getting to know other members. They have adapted well to other trainers and continued to attend those sessions. Many have experienced soreness, which is common during the beginning weeks of a new program. We are currently thinking of a team name and plan to have one by the end of our third week.

The weather hasn’t been cooperating as much as we’d like; therefore, some members were unable to come in. Overall, the program has been challenging in many ways and I plan to continue to motivate them to incorporate a healthier lifestyle and to reach their Slim It goals!

Here’s an interview with one of my team members:

1. Share your story or a bit about yourself in a few sentences:

My name is Jenna Looney. I am 29 years old and have lived in downtown Indy for 1 year. I was a special education teacher and I recently switched to the field of educational technology. In this role I am far less mobile and active at work, but I LOVE the job. I miss the interactions with kids and being active throughout the day. I love travel, Mexican food, reading, being outside, the Pacers, rehabbing furniture, music, dancing, and overall FUN!

I have watched the scale go up and down over the past 10 years in some pretty dramatic swings. I am looking to find a realistic, healthy, maintainable weight and stick to it. I found I felt too busy for exercise or for healthy eating, but I realize it will only get more complicated and busier if I have a family. I want to get it under control now and stop making excuses. I worked with Crystal for about three months prior to starting Slim It and have had positive and exciting results in combination with diet*. I am also currently in the run-walk group for the NIFS Mini Marathon Training Program.

2. NIFS Programs you’ve participated in:

I am a member at NIFS and participated in the Mini Marathon training last year and am doing it again this year. I also started using personal training sessions.

3. Why did you join this program?Slim It to Win It

I enrolled in Slim It to Win It for three reasons:

  1. Groups motivate me to stay strong and committed.
  2. I could pick to work with Crystal and I felt she would bring a challenge, yet she knows me from training so I am comfortable with asking her questions, etc.
  3. I want to continue to work toward my goals of better health and weight loss—I want to look good by my 30th birthday.

4. Something you’ve enjoyed:

I have been surprised with how exercise really does help relieve soreness—but goodness, it’s hard to force yourself to exercise when you are  incredibly sore from a tough workout.

5. Something you have learned or something that surprised you:

Something I have enjoyed: In my one-on-one sessions with Crystal I have loved (and sort of hated) the metabolic ball throws and slams. I love them because I feel the burn and my heart races, so that also makes me hate them. But ultimately I know these bring results, so I love them.

We have incorporated a variation of these metabolic exercises already in our group training and I look forward to more—oh gosh! I cannot believe I just typed that!

6. Favorite exercise from one of the workouts:

BOSU mountain climbers. I don’t really love these because they feel a tad like push-ups, but I guess I like that I have progressed to be able to use the BOSU in mountain climbers and hold it for extended periods while in the push-up/plank position. I knew I was getting stronger when I could do this because it almost killed me the first time I tried it. I like seeing myself get stronger.

7. What accomplishments you have achieved during your training?

Since starting training with Crystal prior to Slim It, I’ve lost 6.5% body fat, gained 6.9 pounds of lean muscle, and have gone down a rating for body fat in three months*. I am excited to continue to decrease my body fat and see less jiggle and wiggle in my gut.

8. What struggles have you encountered? Tips you have learned along the way?

Challenges: When I’ve had a bad day or have had a great day worth celebrating, I find it hard not to want to go out to eat and eat and drink to celebrate or to make myself feel better. To combat this: If I come to the gym I feel better when I’m done. The biggest battle is making myself go—once I’m in the gym it’s rare that I don’t leave feeling better and fulfilled. I’m not perfect at this, but it’s better than it was...

9. How do you stay motivated?

By not quitting if I slip up in my diet, and pushing through excuses and reasons to skip a workout. Also remaining focused on my next goal, 10 more pounds...

10. Any other thoughts?

I love the staff at NIFS. They’re all awesome. I love Crystal and want to thank her for supporting me and helping me make the progress I have. I’m excited to continue my progress!

Training with a group is a proven strategy for sticking with a workout routine and is more economical than one-on-one training. If you are interested in trying a small group or large group training session contact Tony Maloney today to get started!

*Weight loss claims and/or individual results vary and are not guaranteed.

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This blog was written by Crystal Belen, NIFS Heath Fitness Instructor. Learn more about the NIFS bloggers.

Topics: NIFS weight loss NIFS programs weight management Slim It to Win It

Fit & Forty+ (Fabulous) Series—Increasing Your Metabolism

Fit & Forty+ (Fabulous) Series—Increasing Your Metabolism with Strength Training (Dumbbell Workout)Band workout at NIFS

For the fourth, and final, workout in this series we are going to be using dumbbells.

Dumbbell training is another in the line of adding more weight to your moves to make you stronger and to fire up your lean muscle mass. Dumbbells are easy to find in varying sizes, but as with the kettlebell, you do not need to buy a pair of them. I would go with a light weight for pressing moves and heavier for any leg moves you will be doing. If it feels “manageable” to lift over your head in the store go a bit heavier (2-5lbs). You can do less repetitions and more sets.





Remember we want to get strong, burn a ton of calories, and be able to move about your day easier.  It is not “hard” but it will be a “challenge” that we all can conquer.

This is our final workout for our Fit & Forty+ blog. I hope this series has helped you incorporate some changes into your exercise and nutrition routine.  Keep in mind it is not how old the calendar says you are it is what your mind tells you. Keep working small steps equal BIG results.
 
Coming up I will be doing a series on Spring/Summer shape up workouts for ANYWHERE. Thanks for watching!

If you have just joined this series please be sure to go back and read all the blogs including:

Getting Started

Foam Rolling and Increasing Your Range of Motion

Eat Right to Feel Right

Increasing Metabolism with Strenght Training (Band Workout)

Increasing Metabolism with Strenght Training (Kettlebell Workout)

Increasing Metabolism with Strenght Training (Bodyweight Workout)

Ready to get started with an exercise program designed for you? Schedule an appointment with Kris by contacting her at 317-274-3432 or email.

This blog series was written by Kris Simpson BS, ACSM-PT, HFS, personal trainer at NIFS. To read more about Kris and NIFS bloggers click here.

Topics: exercise fitness equipment muscles challenge workout dumbbell 40

Fit & Forty+ (Fabulous) Series— Increasing Your Metabolism with Strength Training (Bodyweight Workout)

Fit & Forty+ (Fabulous) Series— Increasing Your Metabolism with Strength Training (Bodyweight Workout)Band workout at NIFS

For this third workout in the series we are going to be using our own bodyweight. 

Bodyweight moves give you NO excuse not workout. Plus it is a no cost alternative to adding a bunch of equipment. There is nothing more empowering than “you moving you”. Modifications can easily be made to get you to more strength, range of motion, and greater function in all you movements.

 

If you have just joined this series be sure to go back and read all the blogs. Including:

Getting Started

Foam Rolling and Increasing Your Range of Motion

Eat Right to Feel Right

Increasing Metabolism with Strenght Training (Band Workout)

Increasing Metabolism with Strenght Training (Kettlebell Workout)

Ready to get started with an exercise program designed for you? Schedule an appointment with Kris by contacting her at 317-274-3432 or email.

This blog series was written by Kris Simpson BS, ACSM-PT, HFS, personal trainer at NIFS. To read more about Kris and NIFS bloggers click here.