Sports & Recreation

Michelle Long teaches one of many classes offered by the Salt River Fitness Center, this class was Step Circuit training.

Get 2012 Started with a New Beginning

By Richie Corrales

Au-Authm Action News

The new year has begun, and like many other Americans, you have made a resolution to lose weight and get into better shape. Your plan is to get rid of the midriff flab, drop a couple of clothes sizes and look good. This is all attainable, but you must exercise.

Okay, you want to lose those 10, 20 or 30 pounds, so you hit the gym with full force on the first day. You jump on the treadmill and crank up the speed, and five minutes later you are gasping for air. Now you say to yourself, “Working out is too hard, I’m not going back!”

This is the common mistake many people make—they set the bar too high and get frustrated or hurt themselves, and as a result they end up quitting before February rolls around. Exercise and healthy eating should be a part of our daily habits, no matter what time of the year it is.

So now the big question is: How should you proceed? The answer: Visit the Salt River Fitness Center.

The Salt River Fitness Center offers a variety of group classes and personal training options for people of all ages and fitness levels, from Zumba to cardio kickboxing to low-impact aerobics. The staff at the Salt River Fitness Center is well rounded as personal trainers and group exercise leaders. They have diversified backgrounds, certifications, training and interests, and as a result they can help anyone who comes in ready for a new beginning.

For instance, Dion Begay has a degree in exercise science and does a lot with sport-specific conditioning; therefore, he is able to assist clients looking to improve their performance in a specific sport through cardio workouts, weight training and functional training. Begay also teaches the Total Body conditioning class on Tuesday at noon, where participants engage in weight training, calisthenics and a core workout just like a one-on-one session, but in a group setting. Many of his students have improved their strength and cardiovascular output.

If you are looking to improve your flexibility or you’re feeling sore and stiff from your workout, you can see Nevelle Howard for Sport Stretching sessions. The sessions are offered on an appointment-only basis, so give the Salt River Fitness Center a call at (480) 362-7320. Howard leads one-on-one functional training, boxing and kickboxing at the Fitness Center. He also does home-visit training for elders in the Community who can’t make it into the Fitness Center.

“We get a lot of requests for abdominal/core exercises from clients, so we created a class,” said Rachel Seepie, fitness specialist at the Salt River Fitness Center. “We call it Abs Attack with Jason Seepie, [held] on Tuesday at the Salt River Fitness Center and on Thursday at the Salt River High School. Jason also provides great core exercises and an overall exercise regimen.”

Michelle Long is a physical fitness specialist and has been teaching group exercise classes for more than 15 years. She has a broad scope of group-exercise experience and is able to teach a variety of styles of aerobics classes.

She teaches the Spinning, circuit training and step circuit classes. She also provides personal-training sessions to help improve her clients’ strength and overall health.

The Fitness Center also has great volunteers, Robin Mowers and Erniestina Deer, who come in to teach Zumba, a Latin-inspired fitness workout. Zumba is not a dance class, it’s an exercise class that is fun like dance class. Zumba classes meet on Thursdays at noon and 5:30 p.m.

Different Goals for Seniors and Youth
Everyone has a different fitness goal they want to achieve, ranging from weight loss to improving flexibility.

“At this time of year people are making their New Year’s resolutions, so we are seeing more people coming into the Fitness Center who want to lose weight,” said Seepie. Among the different age groups, teens “are looking to improve performance in their specific sports, and seniors are looking to improve their health, daily strength, and balance flexibility to prevent falls and injuries.”

The Fitness Center now has a low-impact aerobics class on Mondays at 5:30 p.m., taught by Roberta Johnston. The class welcomes anyone and is senior-friendly for those seniors who are able-bodied. If low impact is still a little too much, there is a program at the Salt River Senior Center and Lehi Community Center called Enhancement Fitness, taught by staff of the Diabetes Program. You can get more information on that program by contacting the Senior Center or Roberta Johnston.

Nutrition Assessment
The Diabetes Program offers a basic nutrition assessment that clients can fill out. It will be reviewed by Community Nutrition Specialist Jamie Schurz, who will set up an appointment to discuss your results and assist you with making healthier food choices for yourself and family if need. It is open to Community members and employees.

Staying Motivated
Seepie said she would recommend that individuals new to an exercise program start with 20 to 30 minutes of walking for three or four days a week at your local fitness center, in your neighborhood or at the nearest park.

After three to four weeks of basic walking, add some resistance training to your workout; for example, try body-weight exercises like push-ups, squats, lunges and triceps dips at two to three times a week, again for three to four weeks.
By this time you will be ready to add weight-bearing exercises such as dumbbell curls, leg extensions and barbell bench press.

Cardiovascular exercise is very important to reduce weight, build your cardiovascular system, help with lowering blood sugar (go by what your doctor recommends) for those with type 2 diabetes, and to lower high blood pressure and cholesterol. For your safety, check with your physician before beginning any exercise program.

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Get 2012 Started with a New Beginning