Snap Fitness Health & Fitness Blog

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Top Ten #SnapNation Personal Trainers – Part One

By: Snap Fitness

The results are in! You nominated and we delivered. Now introducing the first wave of the 2014 Snap Fitness Top Ten Trainers! Thank you to everyone who entered and congratulations to our top trainers. Stay tuned next Friday for phase two!

 

Jennifer

Personal Trainer at Snap Fitness Isanti, MN

 

Q. Tell us about your fitness background.

A. I am NASM Certified in Personal Training and Fitness Nutrition. I am also a NANBF and NPC Bikini Competitor. I’m getting ready to compete again in October 2014 in Milwaukee, WI and again in June 2015 for a NPC National Competition. Before my fitness career, I did architecture for 15 years. I sat behind a desk and convenience snacking myself to being overweight. When the economy forced me into unemployment, the stress put me at my highest weight. I hired a trainer and started my personal weight loss journey. My trainer inspired me to want to help others like myself. So I changed my career and started training.

 

Q. Tell us about your training style.

A. It varies on the person and their goals. Total body weight training, circuit style is my most common for my weight loss client. I train body builders so I change their tempo and rest time. I like to mix things up and keep it fun and exciting so I’ll add cross fit and boot camp drills here and there.

 

Q. What is your favorite thing about being a Personal Trainer?

A. Helping people change their lives! Weight loss especially, but anyone with a dream and helping them reach it. I use my own personal experiences to relate to my clients. I have never had a job so rewarding.

 

Q. What is something you wish everyone know about health and fitness?

A. You must eat to lose! There is a basic formula to finding your right calorie intake. The 1,400-calorie diet doesn’t work for everyone. Also low carb diets don’t mean no carb diets. You must have good carbs in your diet. Nutrition is 80% of your success; whether it’s weight loss, bodybuilding or marathon running. You will never out train a bad diet. 


 

 

Kelly

Personal Trainer at Snap Fitness Longview, WA

 

Q. Tell us about your fitness background.

A. My fitness background goes back to when I was a kid growing up and playing sports. In high school and college I took every weight training and P.E course offered. In 2011 I got certified through ISSA in personal training. Then in 2013 I went through ISSA again and became a specialist in exercise therapy. Now I just began studying for my third fitness certification, which will be in fitness nutrition. I plan on continuing my education until I become an ISSA master trainer.

 

Q. Tell us about your training style.

A. My training style is busy with a lot of movement and pushing people outside of their comfort zone is the name of my game. I really enjoy teaching boot camps and group training.

 

Q. What is your favorite thing about being a Personal Trainer?

A. My favorite thing about being a personal trainer is helping people better themselves. I love watching my clients transform into a more confident, stronger and healthier versions of themselves.

 

Q. What is something you wish everyone know about health and fitness?

A. Health and fitness is a lifestyle. With eating healthy and exercising regularly you can actually prevent and possibly reverse some medical conditions and diseases. In my opinion, if there were ever a fountain of youth, health and fitness would be the first and only step needed! 


 

Kunda

Personal Trainer at Snap Fitness in Stockbridge, GA

 

Q. Tell us about your fitness background.

A. Growing up, I have always been involved in some form of athletics. I grew up doing martial arts and made my entrance into fitness industry as a martial arts instructor.  In order to become a more effective health coach, I decided that I needed to branch out from what I was familiar with and have more formalized training. That is when I obtained my first personal training certification. Upon obtaining my certification, I began working as a personal trainer and physical therapy aide at a spinal rehabilitation center for three years. As years progressed, I branched out as an independent contractor and launched my own personal training company and fitness blog.

 

Q. Tell us about your training style.

A. My training style is based on science not trends. The styles or methods I tend to incorporate are specific to the individual needs and/or capabilities of my clients. For example, if I have a client that wants to lose body fat, I tend to incorporate circuit training, interspersed with high intensity aerobic exercise. This method of training places a higher metabolic demand on the exercise participant than use of conventional strength training.

 

Q. What is your favorite thing about being a Personal Trainer?

A. My favorite thing about being a trainer is seeing my clients reach a goal or milestone in their training. I feel that our clients are as much an inspiration to us as we are to them.

 

Q. What is something you wish everyone knew about health and fitness?

A. I wish that people would not buy into all the health fads. The health industry is so giant that there is always a new fad or gimmick emerging that promises quick, easy results.  There is no quick fix, no fast results, and it certainly is not easy. What it comes down to is hard work, discipline, and consistency. Fitness is about a lifestyle transformations, not a momentary goal.”


 

Rachael

Personal Trainer at Snap Fitness Grandville, Hudsonville, Georgetown, and Zeeland in Michigan

 

Q. Tell us about your fitness background.

A. I have not always been a trainer, I actually attended cosmetology school and have my license in the beauty field. About two and a half years ago I was very overweight and hired a trainer myself. This began my fitness journey. Little did I know that I would want to become a trainer and help people who struggled with weight or insecurities. My trainer then asked if I would join his team at the Snap Fitness in Georgetown and I was all in! A few months later I took my NCCPT exam and started my new career. Since then I have completed two marathons, became a CrossFit Level 1 Coach and have places in competitions.

 

Q. Tell us about your training style.

A. My training style depends completely on what my client is going through that day. I never "pre-plan" a workout, due to the fact that I do not know what to expect when "Susie-Q" walks through the door. I fully believe in building a relationship with each and every one of my clients, that being said I base my "style" on their goals. If I know someone will enjoy more circuit training, that's exactly what I do. If I know someone excels in cardio but has a rough time with weights I will push them to there limits in the weight portion but give them something they "feel good/comfortable" doing that will also push them.

 

Q. What is your favorite thing about being a Personal Trainer?

A. I would have to say my favorite thing about being a personal trainer is the relationship with my clients. I get the privilege of helping them achieve something they never thought possible. I've been in their shoes and I know how much it means to have someone believe in you. I enjoy being the person that believes in them.

 

Q. What is something you wish everyone know about health and fitness?

A. This does not happen over night. The people you see in catalogs have worked day in and day out at the gym to better themselves and get to where they want to be. It is, and always has been, you against you. So keep at it! Make it happen!


 

 

Austen

Personal Trainer at Snap Fitness Pueblo West

 

Q. Tell us about your fitness background.

A. In the past I played sports all year around, and if I wasn't on the field, I was in the gym trying to make myself better. Instead of pursuing my dream of playing baseball at the next level, I decided to join the military where I served in the United States Air Force. This is when I really became a gym rat, helping and motivating others around me. After the Military, my best friend from school was working in a gym, and wanted me to be one of his personal trainers, so I got certified and started training clients. This is when I truly fell in love with fitness because I was able to share my passion with others! I am now the General Manager of Focus Personal Training at Snap Fitness Pueblo West.

 

Q. Tell us about your training style.

A. Depending on the client my style changes a bit as it should for any Personal Trainer. I really love high intensity training incorporating weights, tabata, and plyometrics. The TRX is always my go to, and I would say it's my best and favorite area to train in. There is so much you can do on the TRX, it just seems there is an endless possibility, and it can be used on beginners or advanced clients. If your not using the TRX I highly suggest it.

 

Q. What is your favorite thing about being a Personal Trainer?

A. My favorite thing about being a Personal Trainer is seeing your client go through the ups and downs, but still staying with it. Seeing that smile on your clients face knowing that they can trust you to get them there results is a great feeling. Once my client sees there own results it makes me feel good, and it makes my job easier because then they are addicted as much as I am. Also teaching my clients all the knowledge that comes with fitness is one of my favorite things, because you know at the end of the day if you teach your client correctly they will teach someone else correctly, and it's and endless cycle!

 

Q. What is something you wish everyone know about health and fitness?

A. A few things, I wish everyone knew that measuring your body fat percentage is much more important than measuring your weight. It will give you a much better indicator of progress being made. You can't out train a bad diet, if you train really hard, but you still can't see any definition in your muscles nine times out of 10 your diet is off and needs to be addressed. Resistance training is one of the most effective exercises for increasing your metabolism post exercise. Resistance training has been proven to increase your metabolism up to 36 hours post exercise. One more of my favorites is everyone needs to know that your mind will quit 100 times before your body will, so train the body, and your mind will follow!

 

Make sure to check back next Friday to meet our five other Top 10 Personal Trainers!

  

7 Moves for Tank Top Arms

By: Snap Fitness

Summer isn’t over yet! Whether you are just starting out or you’re a regular at the gym, this is a great compilation of arm workouts that will give your triceps and biceps a run for their money. 

 

For each exercise, complete 2-3 sets of 10-12 reps to improve overall muscular endurance and strength. Do this sequence twice a week and gradually increase your weight a small amount each time.

 

Incline Press

Targets: Chest and tricep muscles

 

Tricep Dips

Targets: Triceps, chest, and shoulders

 

Machine Seated Flies

Targets: Pectoral, deltoid, and bicep muscles

 

Arm Extension Machine

Targets: Triceps

 

Dumbbell Bicep Curls

Targets: Biceps

 

Dumbbell Front Raise

Targets: Deltoid, chest, and trapezius muscles

 

Dumbbell Tricep Kickbacks

Targets: Triceps

 

Share Your Success with #SnapNation & Win a VIP NASCAR Weekend!

By: Snap Fitness

Why do members join Snap Fitness? Because our clubs offer the tools to help you meet your health and fitness goals. Over the years, members from around the world have transformed their lives thanks to hard work and dedication in the gym. Success doesn’t come without a positive attitude and lots of sweat! 

 

Nothing makes us more proud than seeing members accomplish their goals. That’s why we’ve launched the #SnapNation Success Campaign: to feature all the awesome achievements that happen in our gyms! No matter where you live, people recognize and appreciate commitment and determination. #SnapNation is all about motivating and celebrating everyone who works out in our clubs.

 

#SnapNation’s very own NASCAR driver Landon Cassill knows how important commitment and determination is on the road to success. It took exactly that to complete his Ironman 70.3 half triathlon on July 20 in Racine, Wisconsin.

 

“Signing up for a race like the Ironman 70.3 is what created the habit and discipline of working out every day. I had no choice but to get prepared,” Cassill said. "With that kind of pressure knowing that the clock was ticking to prepare myself for this race, I was able to enjoy the journey with a high level of motivation. When it was all said and done, I am able to see the benefits and be proud of what I accomplished.”

 

We know there are plenty more inspirational stories to tell! Click here to share yours today. To show our support, we’ll send you a FREE #SnapNation t-shirt!* Even better, submit your #SnapNation success story by Sept. 15 for a chance to win a VIP NASCAR Weekend for two! The selected winner and their guest will be set up with hotel, transportation, and — best part! — Hot Passes - an all-access pass that gets you up close and personal with Landon and his crew at the Hollywood Casino 400 in Kansas.

 

 A team from the Snap Fitness Headquarters will select the most inspiring success story and announce the winner following the Sept. 15 deadline.

 

Don’t delay – join #SnapNation and share your success story today!

 

NO PURCHASE NECESSARY.  Legal residents of the 50 United States and D.C. (excluding Rhode Island), 18 years of age or older.  Dates: 8/1/2014 to 9/15/2014.  To enter click here.  For Official Rules, including odds and prize descriptions click here.  Void where prohibited. 

 

* While supplies last. Must be a current Snap Fitness member or staff member. Open only to residents of the 50 US states and District of Columbia, and Canada, excluding Quebec, 18 and older. NO PURCHASE OR PAYMENT OF ANY KIND IS NECESSARY TO ENTER.

How to Start Running

By: Snap Fitness

Running is not only a great way to get in shape, but also a fantastic way to improve your overall mood! Anyone can become a runner and these six tips will help push you in the right direction.  

 

Appropriate Fuel

You’ve probably heard of people loading up on carbs before a big run or other fitness expeditions. It’s important to choose complex carbohydrates, which will provide long lasting energy for your body. Here are some examples of foods you could eat before and after your run.

Pre-run: Sweet potatoes, fruits, vegetables, and whole grains.

Post-run: Apple slices and nut butter, Eggs and toast or fruit, vegetables and hummus, lean protein wrap, and the best for last— protein smoothies.

 

Warm Up & Cool Down

There are mixed opinions floating around about stretching before running. What most researchers agree on is that dynamic stretching, not static stretching, is beneficial to do before you run. Dynamic stretching uses controlled body movements to improve range of motion and loosen up muscles. Once you have completed your running workout, take some time to stretch out your muscles to an elongated point and hold each position for at least 30 seconds. Here is a more in-depth stretching guide.

 

Ease Into It

When you first start out running or revisit running after a long time period, your body needs to slowly ease into it. Listen to your body. If you are in physical pain, switch to intervals of running, then walking. Gradually increase the time you spend running. Muscles soreness and aches are highly likely, but any sharp pains are a red flag that you must not ignore. If you do experience soreness, here are some ways to relieve your muscles.

 

Switch It Up

If you really want to improve your running ability and keep it fun, adding variety to your workouts is crucial. Try doing intervals alternating sprints and jogs. Running uphill will strengthen your body increasing your stride length and speed over time. Another variation to try is off-road running. Not only is the change in scenery exciting, but the uneven terrain is a great challenge for your body.

 

Fix Your Form

One way to prevent overuse injuries while running is by improving your form. Take note of your posture and alignment while you run.  Relax your face, neck and shoulders to avoid excess tension. For a more in-depth explanation on improving your running form, read through our trainer’s advice.

 

Cross Train

Cross training is the combination of different exercises other than that of the athlete in training (In other words, anything but running). Cross training helps balance your muscle groups by strengthening your non-running muscles and rests your running muscles. It also helps to maintain or improve your cardiovascular fitness, not to mention the variety prevents boredom and burnout. Some beneficial cross training options for runners include biking, water running, swimming, and the elliptical machine at your Snap Fitness club.

 

Now all you need are a good pair of running shoes and some self-determination! What other advice to you have about becoming a runner? Tell us on our Facebook or Twitter

#SnapNation Success Story: Linda S.

By: Snap Fitness

After having 4 kids and going back to school to fulfill her lifetime dream of becoming a teacher, Linda S., had put her health on the back burner. When she was diagnosed with Type 2 Diabetes, she could no longer ignore it.

 

“One day looking in the mirror I decided it was time for a change,” Linda S. said. “ I signed up at my local Snap Fitness and started making a real effort.”

 

Linda quickly fell in love with her Snap Fitness’ Zumba classes and weight training. At her heaviest she weighed 195 pounds. She’s now down to 140 pounds.

 

“It took a year to really get the results I wanted, but it was all worth it,” she said. “I had tried crazy diets and shakes before, but it was exercise and nutrition that finally worked.”

 

She still struggles to find the balance between her own health and caring for her kids, but she works at it every day. She’s now aiming to reach new fitness goals and personal records.

 

“I watch what I eat and I exercise,” she said. “I now know how important my health is and I feel better than ever.”

 

Way to go Linda! We’re proud of you and all your hard work!

 

Do you have a success story to share with #SnapNation? Email us at success@snapfitness.com.

12 Ways to Eat More Fruits and Vegetables

By: Snap Fitness

Fruits and vegetables have essential fiber, vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants. Most fruits and vegetables are naturally low in fat and calories and are filling. It’s essential we get enough in our diet.

 

Here are 12 ways to work in more fruits and vegetables everyday:

 

1. Make your own granola bars and fill them with dried fruit and nuts instead of buying ones loaded with sugar and white flour. Try this chewy trail mix bar for a delicious and nutritious treat.

 

2. Serve apple slices or celery with peanut butter instead of chips and crackers.

 

3. Blend fruits and veggies into a green smoothie. Try this cinnamon apple smoothie if you need more convincing!

 

4. Stir berries, dried fruit, or banana slices into yogurt, oatmeal, or cereal.

 

5. Add peppers, tomatoes, mushrooms or onions to your eggs for a delicious omelet. Add as many veggies as you want to this 5-minute breakfast burrito recipe.

 

6. In pastas, salads, soups, sandwiches, and casseroles, most recipes call for a certain amount of vegetables. Double the amount called for in the original recipe for an extra serving.

 

7. One day a week cut out meat! It’s a great way to eat more fruits and vegetables. Try this sweet potato and quinoa burger recipe.

 

8. Add extra veggies to a frozen pizza, order double veggies from delivery, or create your own veggie filled pizza! We recommend our cauliflower crust pizza for an extra veggie kick.

 

9. Make all your snacks revolve around fruits and vegetables. Stock pantries, countertops, refrigerators, car, desk, and purse with some form of fruit or veggie.

 

10. Fruit-based dessert has the ability to offer a light, refreshing, naturally sweet ending to a meal. Plus you get the bonus of an extra fruit serving! Try one of these 15 ways to treat yourself the healthy way.

 

11. Pack pre-cut veggies and fruits into snack-size bags for perfectly portioned munchies. Keep them eye level in the fridge for easy access.

 

12. If you have a hankering for potato chips but don’t want all the extra calories, make a big batch of crispy kale chips to munch on.

 

 

How else do you add fruit and veggies to your meals? Tell us on our Facebook or Twitter.  

Grilled Teriyaki Salmon

By: Snap Fitness

Salmon is a great protein choice full of vitamins, minerals, and healthy fats. Making your own teriyaki sauce and brushing it on the salmon at the end allows you to control both the ingredients and the portion size. Store leftover sauce in the fridge and spoon a bit over leftover chicken or cooked tofu and leafy greens for a quick lunch. Keep a close eye on the salmon as it cooks since it can burn quickly. Serve alongside some brown rice and grilled vegetables for a healthy, balanced, and flavorful meal.

 

Grilled Teriyaki Salmon

 

1/3 cup low sodium soy sauce or tamari

2 tablespoons honey

1 teaspoon ginger paste

1 teaspoon garlic paste

Juice of half a lemon

1/3 cup cold water

2 teaspoons cornstarch

1 pound salmon filets

Olive oil

Coarse kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

Green onion, white and light green part only, thinly sliced (optional)

 

In a small pot, combine soy sauce, honey, ginger, garlic, and lemon juice over medium heat and bring to a boil. In a small bowl or measuring cup, combine water and cornstarch. Slowly stir cornstarch mixture into the boiling soy sauce and continue to boil until slightly thickened. Remove from the heat.

 

Preheat a grill on high. Brush both sides of the salmon lightly with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Place salmon skin side up on the grill and close the lid. Cook 4-6 minutes per side or until the salmon is fully cooked. Remove from the grill and spoon teriyaki sauce over the top. Sprinkle with green onion if desired and serve.

#SnapNation Success Story: Jeff B. Illinois

By: Snap Fitness

Jeff B. had been looking for a career change that would combine his passion for fitness and his love of business. He found it while he was working out at his local Snap Fitness in Lake Villa, Illinois.

 

“I loved my gym, I liked that it was open 24/7 and just the easy going atmosphere.” Jeff said. “I started talking to the owner of the club at the time, and he decided to sell his club to me.”

 

It was a smooth transition for Jeff. He thanks Snap Fitness corporate for offering him great support.

 

“The training corporate offered made a big difference, “ he said. “They were there for me every step of the way.”

 

Jeff now owns two clubs and plans to keep expanding. He says being present in his clubs has been his key to success.

 

“I always try to be in the clubs as much as possible,” he said. “You notice the little things while you’re there and it’s important to get to know the members.”

 

While Jeff loves to be at his clubs, he also loves the freedom that owning his gyms gives him.

 

“You are able to set your own schedule and work from anywhere,” he said. “Owning a Snap Fitness comes with many more benefits than you’d get from owning any other business.”

 

The benefits aren’t just in the form setting your own schedule. He says the biggest benefit comes from the nature of the business.

 

“I’m very into being fit and healthy and I love being able to share that with others,” he said. “It’s great to see people actually making positive changes in their lives, I’ve had some members that have lost over 200 pounds.”

 

Jeff says each day he is grateful he made the decision to become a business owner.

 

“It’s been a very positive experience, I’m so happy I made the move,” he said. “Snap Fitness is just a great environment and it really feels like a family.”

 

Are you looking to become a proud business owner like Jeff B.? Click here to learn more about owning a Snap Fitness.

20-Minute Cable Workout

By: Snap Fitness

Ready to amp up your workout? The cable tower found in most Snap Fitness gyms has weight stacks and swappable handles. They allow for more functional movements so you can work your muscles from all angles with a better range of motion. The cables keep your muscles under constant tension, giving you a tough workout. Click on the links below to watch demonstrations of these seven workouts.

 

Cable Leg Raise

Targets: Hip flexors and quadriceps

 

Cable Glute Kickbacks

Targets: Glutes and hamstrings

 

Cable Machine Curls

Targets: Biceps

 

Shoulder Rotator on Cable

Targets: Internal rotators

 

Cable Machine Rows

Targets: Lats and rhomboids

 

Cable Flyes

Targets: Pectorals (chest) and anterior deltoid

 

Cable Machine Pull-downs

Targets: Lats and lower traps

 

Try this simple 20-Minute cable workout this week and let us know on our Facebook or Twitter how you liked it!   

Benefits of Walking

By: Snap Fitness

Walking is a gentle, low-impact exercise that’s easy and suitable for people of all ages and most abilities. Something as simple as a daily brisk walk can benefit you in many different ways. Here are seven reasons to take those extra steps and make walking a part of your healthy lifestyle.

 

Maintains a Healthy Weight

A good walk can help shape and strengthen your legs, give great definition to your quads, calves, hamstrings and glutes.  If your posture is on key you’re able to tone your abdominal muscles as well.

 

Reduces Your Risk of Heart Disease

Regular walkers are known to have fewer strokes and heart attacks, have lower blood pressure and have higher levels of healthy HDL cholesterol.

 

Increases Happiness

Getting active releases feel-good endorphins into the bloodstream, reducing stress and anxiety. 

 

Gives Your Energy

Walking is a great natural energizer! It boosts circulation and increases oxygen supply to every cell in your body, which helps you feel more alert.

 

Boosts Your Immune System

Walking regularly can lower your risk of macular degeneration, arthritis and even cancer by 50% compared to people who don’t exercise.

 

Reduces Your Risk of Diabetes

Thirty minutes of walking a day makes your muscles more sensitive to insulin. That allows glucose to do its duty inside your cells rather than pile up in your bloodstream.

 

Relieves Stress

If you’re looking to relive some stress, walking is a great option! Studies have shown that walking can benefit your mood and may even ward off anxiety and depression.

 

Ready to walk it out? Try this 25-minute run/walk treadmill workout to get started.

 

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