Fit Columbia • Personal Trainer, Aerial Yoga, Wall Yoga, Yoga, Bungee, Stretching, Columbia SC
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Before you hire a trainer...

http://www.thecolumbiastar.com/news/2015-04-10/Commentary/My_trainer_needs_training.html

This article in The Columbia Star was brought to my attention by a few clients this morning. I read it and couldn't wait to get home and write about it. This article is disturbing both in tone and substance.  I wanted to be sarcastic and ask so many questions.  But at the end of the day, I had to concede that this story is one I've heard many times over.  The way this was written personally offended me as fitness professional because it served up a plethora of stereotypes and left its readers discouraged. I would like to offer up a gentle rebuttal that encourages potential clients to do their research and then reap the benefits of hiring a great trainer.

According to The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention 34.9% of US adults are obese. With numbers like this, no wonder there are so many gyms/studios/trendy fitness boutiques and personal trainers are popping up everywhere. It's very important to do your research because not all personal trainers are made equal. South Carolina lacks a licensing process or even a governing body to monitor the work of a "personal trainer". My block alone has at least 6 personal trainers and we all differ in style, equipment, education and personalities.  How would one even choose between us?

Here are a few tips:

  1. Listen to your gut: The trainer should immediately make you feel comfortable and they should listen to you and take notes.  You should be 100% honest about your health, health history and fitness background.  Take mental notes of how they carry themselves and what kind of lifestyle they lead and whether you could spend 1-3 hours a week with them alone.
  2. Ask about their career summary: Ask about their experiences and their successes. They should have a resume with licenses, certifications, continuing education credits, first aid & cpr, blogs, testimonials and more. Ask them how their background can help YOU and YOUR SPECIFIC NEEDS. Don’t hire someone you would make fun of (aka “Biff”). Hire someone who inspires you and challenges you.
  3. Ask for referrals: Ask them to give you the contact information of some of their clients that you may talk to that have similar conditions as you do.  Then ask that client about their experiences and how the trainer helped them.
  4. Research more than one trainer: As I stated earlier, there are 6 trainers on my tiny block in Columbia, SC so just picking one based on price or the internet suggested facility may not be the best way. Call and vet the trainers, ask questions, see their space, ask for a complimentary session.  Do your homework, I'm just saying...
  5. Hire the trainer:  Hire the trainer of your choice but don’t sign long term agreements or sign up for more than a month or two at a time. It’s important that your trainer keeps up their end of the deal and if they don’t- you should be able to fire them without consequences.

    An article like this discourages people from hiring a personal trainer and the mocking tone adds to every stereotype.  Personal trainers are not governed or licensed and some can call themselves personal trainers after one weekend online certification. It’s important that the potential client do the research to hire the right person.  The relationship between trainer and client is an important one.  They can add consistency and individualized instruction. They can change up your current routine. They can offer sport-specific training, injury rehabilitation and special-needs training. The right trainer can give you an ego boost and positive feedback. The right trainer can do all of these and I personally know many exceptional trainers in Columbia and would happy to help you connect to one.
Angie Sellers
How to help Fit Columbia grow

Thanks so much for helping me build a business Columbia, SC! Your support means so much to me.  Fit Columbia is thriving and so is my family thanks to your mentoring, financial support and friendship.

As you know, my business is dependent on word of mouth and social media to keep growing and excelling. If you have been pleased with my performance as a coach, trainer, friend please share the experience with others.  This is what you can do to help me:

1. "Like" my  Facebook page - https://www.facebook.com/FitColumbiaSC/

2. Follow me on twitter, my handle is @fit29205

3. Purchase a Fit Columbia shirt

4.  Go to Yelp and write a recommendation for me or endorse me as a fitness professional.  https://www.yelp.com/biz/fit-columbia-columbia

5.  Go on to LinkedIn and write a recommendation for me or endorse me as a fitness professional.  https://www.linkedin.com/in/fitcolumbia

6.  Bring a friend to class.  I am so excited when I get the chance to share my gifts with new people and would love to meet your friends and family.  Bring them along, the first class would be free and I'd love to meet them!

Thank you! 

Angie Sellers
Keep our girls playing sports...

Keep our girls playing sports by hiring women coaches and creating business and community leaders. The role of the coach is not just coaching!

A survey of executive women found that 80% played sports growing up, and 69% said sports helped them develop leadership skills that contributed to their professional success.

Did you know?
• Brazil President Dilma Rousseff played volleyball.
• The first female head of the International Monetary Fund, Christine Lagarde, was a member of the French national synchronized swimming team.
• Former US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton played several sports, including basketball, soccer and softball.
• Former US National Security Adviser and Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice was a competitive figure skater and tennis player.
• PepsiCo CEO Indra Nooyi played cricket in India and later baseball in the US.
• Mondolēz International CEO Irene Rosenfeld was a four-sport athlete in high school and played basketball at Cornell University.
• DuPont CEO Ellen Kullman played college basketball at Tufts University.
• The co-founder of Marvell Technology Group, Weili Dai, played semi-professional basketball in China.

Review this list above and you'll see that many of the women "participated" in sports . . . but was not necessarily the top athlete in that sport. According to the NCAA most of our girls won't play college or professional sports.

  • BASKETBALL: 433,344 female high school players only 3.8% will play in college and .9% drafted to play WNBA
  • VOLLEYBALL: 429,634 female high school players only 3.9% will play in college
  • SOCCER: 374,564 female high school players only 7.0% will play in college
  • TENNIS: 184,080 female high school players only 4.9% will play in college
  • SOFTBALL: 371,891 female high school players only 5.1% will play in college

Knowing the benefits of playing sports and knowing that many of our athletes won't play in college, shouldn't our focus shift? It's a life lesson to be a part of a team and learn what your contribution to that team is. Ultimately, youth sports are not about developing the next U.S. Open champion, World Cup goalie or even college scholarship recipient, but rather about teaching, molding, growing and developing young girls to be the business and community leaders of the future.

We can create strong athletes by assisting them in preparing for training programs, communicating effectively with other athletes, assisting them with developing new skills, but also encouraging positive self image and leadership opportunities.

Our girls' self-esteem plummets at age 12 and doesn't improve until 20, so how they are treated in the weight room, on the court and on the field will have a huge impact on them for the rest of their lives.

We need women coaches and role models in these weight rooms, on the fields and on the side lines. As a woman coach, I am able to ever vigilant when the girls talk to each other with their guard down. They talk about their bodies, sex, parties, friends and I am in the background absorbing it all.  A woman in the locker room and weight room can watch out for early indications of eating disorders, drug and alcohol abuse, bullying behaviors and more. We need women coaches to teach our girls that each girl is unique and plays a role on the team and in our community.

Interesting reads:
Moms Team- http://www.momsteam.com/team-parents/coaching/why-women-make-great-youth-sports-coaches

TIME-  http://time.com/3896935/women-coaches/

Angie Sellers
...a tennis thank you

How do you thank people for sincerely improving the quality of your life? I guess the answer is to publically thank them on social media. Then it’s official.

Around 2010, I stopped playing volleyball and spent a few years hiking, kayaking and mountain biking. While these activities were fun and physical- it wasn’t enough. I missed having teammates, the ACE serve, the big WIN, big LOSS, the team that “always cheats”, the travel, the opponents you love to hate…I missed playing a team sport.

Some of my favorite people in the world are athletes and tennis helped me reconnect to many of them…and myself. I want to thank Deborah Madden Zippel and Carolyn Hawks McClam for nudging me to play tennis and always sharing their adventures with me.

But, I would never have begun playing if it weren’t for my friends, Shelby L. Provencher and Heather Roth. These two literally took me out the tennis courts and taught me how to hold the racquet and keep score. Then they helped me find a team and buy the right equipment and filled me with encouragement and confidence.

I don’t know how to thank these women for helping me get into tennis or how to thank all the amazing men and women I’ve met since, but here it is…publically, and on social media…THANK YOU.

Angie Sellers
NEAT & Meditation, a woman’s guide to losing belly fat.

NEAT & Meditation, a woman’s guide to losing belly fat.

Women suffer from heart attacks every 90 seconds.  Women with abdominal obesity have a 63% higher risk of cancer. These statistics can be reduced with a lifestyle change, and for all you women with stressful jobs, NEAT and meditation may be your answer. Combat heart attacks with NEAT and fight off stomach fat with stretching/active rest.

MOVEMENT

You can burn hundreds of calories a day just by moving more and sitting less.  It takes energy to move even the smallest muscle. NEAT is non-exercising activity thermogenesis and individuals can lose about 477 calories a day without exercising — just by taking 2 minute breaks throughout the day and being active.  The fact is 50% of women die during their 1st heart attack and 46% become disabled after 1st heart attack. So, let’s prevent the heart attack in the first place by putting NEAT to work in our lives.

Option A: Go for short walks every hour. Sitting for long periods of time has been linked with heart disease, diabetes, cancer and obesity, so make an appointment with yourself to get up hourly and go for a walk which will boost energy, burn calories and decrease stiffness.  If this isn’t an option, sit down and stand up from your office chair 10-15 times and see if that doesn’t get your heart rate up!  If you’re “fit” take this hourly break to walk the stairs 1-2 minutes.

Option B: Pace or practice balance. Pacing while on the phone is a great way to get some movement in. You could also practice balance by standing on one leg while on the phone (stand near a wall if this is difficult for you).

Option C: When you’re home watching TV, decide to do body weight exercises during commercials.  See attached photo.

STRETCH/ACTIVE REST/BETTER SLEEP

Chronic stress sends signals to the brain to add visceral fat to women to protect their abdominal organs.  So yes, your stress levels are directly connected to your belly fat or “pooch”.  Combat chronic stress by actively resting and meditating.

Option A: While watching television at home, lie on a yoga block or foam roller during commercials and take that time to allow gravity and gentle movements to ease your body.

Option B: Download an app that will walk you through “yoga nidra” or yogic sleep and listen to it before bed.  Or listen to soothing earth sounds or calming music. Disconnect from social media, emails and calendars.  Let this guided meditation take you into a more restful sleep.

Type 2 diabetes is the fastest growing preventable disease in the world.  Couple this with the high rate of cancers associated with abdominal obesity and we must make a change for the better.  With stretching and active rest, women can decrease their stress and increase the number of hours of homeostatic sleep.

Let’s make Columbia stronger by integrating bursts of movement throughout the day and getting a better nights rest.

Angie Sellers
Summer Hydration for Female Athletes

Heat-induced illness is one of the most preventable sports injuries, here are some ways we can help our female athletes stay hydrated this summer.

1. Bottle of water
2. Salty snack
3. Breathable clothing

PRE-PLAN &
Pre-pack & plan-ahead and make our daughters take responsible for themselves. Be sure that each child uses their own beverage container that they can keep cool during the practice. An individual container allows monitoring fluid consumption more accurately, can be filled with beverage of personal preference, will help avoid the spread of germs and viruses, and the cool fluid will be replenished at a better rate than a container that sits out in the sun.

According to nutritionists at the Children Nutrition Research Centre at the Baylor College of Medicine in Houston, Texas, sports drinks offer little advantage over cool water. Sports drinks are designed to benefit athletes engaged in continuous, high-intensity aerobic workouts which last for 90 minutes or more.

Be creative with your water by making ice cubes with fruit in it by putting raspberries, mint, lemons in the tray with water and freeze. Add these cubes to your water. Try coconut water or water with “Ultima” or “Nuun” which will help with performance and electrolyte replenishment.

Immediately before and during activity, children should avoid fruit juices, carbonated beverages, caffeinated beverages and energy drinks. Fruit juices have a high sugar content that can slow fluid absorption, cause an upset stomach, and may also lack sodium. Carbonated beverages, such as soft drinks, can reduce voluntary drinking due to stomach fullness, throat burn when gulping and lack sodium. Energy drinks should be avoided because many contain caffeine and have high carbohydrate concentrations which slows the emptying of fluids from the stomach.

DRINKING TIPS

BEFORE: To ensure that the child is not dehydrated before the start of the practice session or game, the child should drink 12-16 ounces of fluid approximately 30 minutes before getting to the field.

DURING: During the activity, periodic drinking should be enforced even if the child does not feel thirsty. Each 15-20 minutes the child or adolescent should consume: 5 ounces of fluid for a player weighing 90 lbs or less 9 ounces of fluid for a player weighing more than 90 lbs.

AFTER: Once the activity is over, players should drink water or a sports drink every 15-20 minutes for the first hour after activity.

SALTY SNACKS

Bring a snack bag of pretzels, trail mix or nuts to replace sodium. Nothing too extreme, but a snack that’s mildly salty can do wonders for your health. Remember, moderation is important here. An overload of salty snacks can be quite dangerous, but as this study shows, a small amount before a workout can help your body progress and even prevent the dangers of dehydration.

SYNTHETIC CLOTHING VS COTTON

We are asking our female athletes to wear clothing that is light-colored and lightweight that facilitates evaporation of sweat. The super light fabric wicks moisture to keep you cool and dry; and many tanks provide a built-in bra provides support.

Here are some simple facts about cotton and synthetics:
▪ Cotton will absorb up to 8% of its weight in water. Most synthetics will absorb less than 1%.
▪ A good synthetic t-shirt will allow air to pass through (breathability) at five times the rate of cotton.
▪ Synthetics move moisture away from your skin. Cotton traps it next to your skin.
▪ Synthetics wash easier, dry much quicker, and last much longer than cotton.

Ask your kids to keep an eye on their urine color.  Ask your kids to keep an eye on their urine color.
Urine color charts have been developed to help young athletes know when they are dehydrated. Ideally, they want their urine color to be a pale yellow (like fresh-squeezed lemonade or lemon juice), indicating adequate hydration. A strong yellow, orangey-yellow, or brownish green color (like Mountain Dew) means the athlete is dehydrated and drinking needs to begin pronto!

Angie Sellers
Yoga 4 Cancer

I just completed 45+ hours of yoga for cancer training. I am able to teach clients through every stage of their cancer treatments. I've learned so much about neuropathy, chemotherapy, pranayama and the lymph system. This training helped me realize how important tying together all of what I already do: strength training, yoga, the yoga wall and the value of human touch. Connecting breathing and gravity to help someone full of anxiety, fear or pain makes me feel like I can truly help people. Thank you to Tari Prinster for making me watch videos on breast biopies and tram flap surgeries to help me understand what my clients are going through and how to keep them from getting injured. I'm going to offer donation based one-on-one yoga classes for men and women going through the cancer journey. Namaste.

Tari Prinster: http://y4c.com/about/about-tari-2/

My yoga training:
Yoga Alliance 200 hr RYT w/ Pam Meriwether
Prenatal & Postnatal Yoga RYT w/ Amani Murray
Yoga 4 Cancer 45 Hr RYT w/ Tari Prinster

Angie Sellers
Abs without Crunches

Abs Without Crunches.  Focusing on your core strength.

 

Traditional crunches & sit-ups place large amounts of stress on the lower spine and neck. Repeated crunches and sit-ups encourage you to flatten your spine rather than allow for the curves that are naturally there. Core training will support the spine without compromising the natural integrity of its form. Without this support, the strain on your lower back can eventually lead to bulging or herniated discs, compressed vertebrae and nerve damage. Additionally, sit-ups and crunches do not strengthen the deep abdominal muscle, transversus abdominus. Here are a couple of videos featuring ways to focus on core at a variety of skill levels.

 

A couple of videos:

Wash Cloth Sliders  https://youtu.be/NJ8GQMHBj_I

tability Ball Rollouts: https://youtu.be/koa2mzdkloU

TRX Abs: https://youtu.be/cP-z0-xd1Ns

Two Medicine Ball Push-up Planks: https://youtu.be/hESj2dNLXAM

osu Ball Abs & Cardio: https://youtu.be/yToYs9wddR8

Angie Sellers
Designing a running program for deconditioned individuals

Running has rapidly increased in popularity; nearly every social group has that one person who walks in and says, "I ran 14 miles this morning before breakfast," and everyone stares at them as if they just declared they'd found the cure for cancer. My opinion is that running 14 miles can be done by any stubborn person with or without a healthy body. Running can be effortless if your body is in alignment and healthy. So what of the non-athlete, obese, overweight or the injured individual wanting to run like their friends and the health nuts in the social media? Should they risk a weight-related musculoskeletal injury? Should the academic minded non-athlete just listen to the advice of their friends and blogs and jump out there and begin running?

I say no. Non-athletic individuals and obese people should have three goals for running: gradual weight loss, avoiding injury, and making physical activity a habit as part of a healthy life style. The best way to achieve this is to improve overall athleticism. Athleticism is more than just a mind set that is created from challenging your body, it is having a sturdy build or well-proportioned body structure. It's working purposefully with deliberate steps. Being an athlete does not mean you have a sport specific gift. True athletes can adapt and adjust in all physical environments. So before you start running, get medical clearance and then follow these steps to improve overall athleticism.
1) Start by walking, stationary cycle training and reducing caloric intake for 3-6 months before running. One way to increase the caloric burn is to shorten the stride length and add some incline walking. "Healthy" non-athletes with no joint pain can begin the walk-to-run transition sooner. To reduce overuse injury with this type of fast walking allow a day of rest between sessions. Add non-running activities such as swimming, yoga, Pilates and strength training to your fitness plan.
2) Transition to continuous running by starting off slow and fast walking for longer periods of time. Gradual exposure to increased training load will permit bone tissues to rest and avoid mechanical failure. Continue non-running activities as this will promote weight loss, thus making running easier and safer. "To prevent injury, do not progress duration/milage more than 5% per week" ACSM Health & Fitness Journal suggests.
3) Intermittent Walk Jog/Run. As training adaptations occur, individuals will be able to work harder for longer intensities. I wouldn't recommend running for anyone obese or overweight unless they can do so without joint pain or injuries. Non-athletes and novice runners should follow the same guideline. If there is a physical set-back or injury, you should see a sports-medicine doctor who can determine what the problem is and prescribe some physical therapy. If the problem is linked to your running form, you might consider seeing a running clinic with a biomechanist, where someone can evaluate your running gait, strength, and flexibility.


Mental Prep:
Skip the hype items. It's not a fashion show and don't brace/wrap/compress anything unless there is a true need. As long as you’re running comfortably and injury-free, there’s no reason to believe any of the items you see celebrities and fellow racers wearing will help. Good form is better than any product you can purchase.

Set the intention. Intention is the starting point of every dream. Everything that happens in the universe begins with intention. Detach from the outcome and fall in love with the process of taking care of yourself. Mind. Body. Spirit.
 

Cross train. Forgive me for saying this but most runners who don't cross train look skinny, broken and have saggy butts. What does it prove? My intention is to live prescription free as long as I can and be healthy and fit. I don't want to be abnormally skinny or muscularly. My intention is to give my body the chance to heal itself. So if you want to be a runner- be a healthy runner that can run indefinitely. Do this by cross training. Cross training with strength training will offer exercises to help offset any muscle imbalances. Cross training with yoga will train your mind to be calm by stimulating the parasympathetic nervous system. Cross training with Zumba/barre/insanity (or whatever group class that catches your fancy) will boost your confidence, add accountability and make exercise fun.

Be the observer. Ask someone to video tape you running (front, side and behind) and watch your own form. You don't have to be a "runner" or professional to observe excessive or incorrect body movements, wild arm swings or bobbing head. According to Coach Braylen Bennett, "runners should have relaxed shoulders and allow arms to swing forward and backwards in their sockets. The arms dictate the pace of the legs and shouldn't swing across the body. The foot strike and stride will be different for each runner but the knees and feet should be pointing in the direction of the run." I want to add that women should be mindful of the bras they are wearing while running. I have trained large breasted women and found that they shrug their shoulders when they run due to the weight and lack of support of their sports bras. It's important that you purchase a bra that will lock and load your "girls". Underarmour makes sports bras that you can purchase by the cup size or see your local sports store professional. In Columbia, SC Jack & Jane Sports has a great variety of bras to help with every activity level. Finally, watch your posture and how your heels kick back. Take your videos and notes and talk to a professional if you see anything that doesn't look natural and comfortable.
For anyone wanting to become a "runner," add crossing training, running and a hybrid of group exercise options and you'll find a lifestyle and body that supports your goal.

Coach Bennett is a former University of South Carolina football player. He is currently AAU and USATF Certified Coach and serves at the Hammond School track and football coach.

Angie Sellers
Pre & Post Natal Yoga Certified

I just received my Prenatal and Postnatal Yoga Certification through the Yoga Alliance, taught by Amani Murray. This gives me continuing education credits for my RYT-200 certification and a deeper understanding of how to use yoga for this specific population. This is a great opportunity for me to expand my one-on-one yoga sessions to include mommies before and after baby. In this training, we studied Cycle Overview, Infertility, Chakra System, Vayus, Trimester Overview, and Pranayama. We had so much fun doing yoga with a pretend baby bump and studying sequencing, breathing and safety. I'm looking forward to sharing what I've learned and adding the benefits of the yoga wall to Columbia mommies.

Angie Sellers
3 Machines to avoid at gym

Top exercise machines to avoid in the gym:
1. Machine Lateral Raises: locks shoulders into a range of motion that can cause impingement and rotator cuff issues.  *Alternative: use dumb bells to do side raises

2. Adductor & Abductor Machines: when you internally and externally rotate your hips while seated, it puts a great deal of pressure on your low back. Lifting a heavy load on this machine can make the IT band so tight it throws the knee cap out of place. *Alternative: Straight leg side cable kicks & bent leg side cable kicks. 

3.  Seated rotation machine: very stressful on your lower back.  * Protect back, burn more calories by doing a standing torso twist.

Angie Sellers
BENEFITS OF ROYAL MACA

I just went through my medicine cabinet and found a bottle of Royal Maca that I used a while ago to help with cycle and hormones. 

What is it? It’s sometimes known as Peruvian Ginseng. It’s a relative of broccoli and serves as powerful herb for hormone balance, thyroid and energy.

• Reduce menopausal symptoms including hormone-related depression & anxiety
• Provide nutritional support for the endocrine system
• Regulate and normalize menstrual cycles
• Promote healthy fertility in both men and women
• Support a healthy immune system
• Increase energy, stamina, and endurance
• Promote healthy libido and erectile function
• Revitalize seniors, mentally and physically

I used Royal Maca capsules from Rosewood Market in the past. Call Fran and ask her for more details if you’re interested in learning more.  Rosewood Market & Deli 2803 Rosewood Dr, Columbia, SC 29205 (803) 256-6410

Angie Sellers
2014: Skin Brushing...a habit you should develop

Let's add this to the number of healthy habits we are attempting to build into our lifestyles in 2014. 

In less than 5 minutes a day you can do so much for your body just by skin brushing. 

Skin brushing everyday will open the pores in your body and improve appearance of cellulite. 

More important to me? It increases circulation, encourages your body's discharge of metabolic wastes and greatly aids the lymphatic drainage of the entire body.  

Skin brushing works because your skin is the largest organ and responsible for 1/4 of your body's detoxification. Your skin can eliminate one to pounds of waste each day! It's considered "the third kidney" because it works so hard.  :)

If you haven't done skin brushing before it is wise to start with only one pass over the skin's surface. Over time you can gradually increase the number of strokes done during each skin brushing session. The reason is that too much stimulation can be too hard on the body. And always use long gentle, but firm, strokes. Remember that your skin should not turn red, which means the pressure on your strokes is too heavy. The idea is to stimulate and not to irritate the skin.  It's also not a good idea to brush over rashes, wounds, cuts for obvious reasons.

Beyond that, get to it.  I have used a skin brush on and off for about six years. This actually reminds me to get in there now and use it!  You can buy a skin brush almost anywhere. I got mine for under $10. BAM! Inexpensive and effective. 

 

Angie Sellers
Meet Fit Columbia Intern: Shannon Reagan

Shannon's post-internship review. 


It has been almost two weeks since I have worked with the Epworth boys and I miss them more that I imagined! The Unleash Your Ironman program was originally going to be open to whoever wanted to be apart of the class, but I am so thankful that we were able to provide this to the boys in the Epworth cottage. It was such a joyful and fun experience.

 

Before the class began, I figured boys in this age group would try and be cool by acting disinterested in what I was asking of them. Boy, was I wrong! These guys tried every activity that was presented to them. They did not always succeed, but they tried their best. They especially thrived off of activities where they got to compete with one another in challenges or high energy, explosive activities like flipping tires or kettle bells tosses. I was also prepared to deal with some disrespect from the boys towards me and towards each other. Again, I was very wrong. These boys were so respectful to me and to Angie. Never once did I feel disrespected during the program. They were also respectful to each other. I could see a brotherhood between the boys. Even though they are all very different, they worked hard to get along with each other. I also loved interacting with their supervisors! They were so joyful and helpful. If there was anything we needed help with they were happy to jump right in and help out. I could see a genuine love and care for those boys in them.

 

After working with these boys, I realize that I would love to someday offer something like this for whatever community I am apart of. I love that Angie was able to open her gym and offer her equipment to love and teach these boys. Not only did we teach them fundamental lessons of weight lifting, but we were able to show them that they matter and we care about them. We showed them that women can lift just like men and we encouraged them as we saw them succeeding at different activities. Because Epworth is not a permanent home for many of these boys, we may never have the privilege of interacting with some of them agian. It does make me sad because I loved working with this group so much, but I am very thankful for the influence, though small, that we could have in their lives. I hope they were encouraged by us and that they took away at least one positive truth because that would absolutely make it all worth it!

A NOTE FROM Shannon Reagan:

Fitness is vital to life and research shows that our perspective on fitness begins when we are kids. The experiences we have with fitness when we are young, significantly impact our willingness to engage later in life. Because of this, we are so excited to host a class for boys 10-14 years old from Epworth Children’s Home. We are calling the class “Unleash Your Ironman”. This class will equip these boys with the knowledge and skill they need to feel successful in the weight room. This confidence and success will encourage boys to find their passions in fitness. Each of them will know they have strengths, they are capable, and they can succeed. We will take them through pre-testing and post-testing in order to help these guys see their progress. Our emphasis is on safety, control, and quality of movement rather than quantity of weight lifted. These boys will be encouraged to set goals for themselves. These goals may be short term, like trying out for the wrestling team, or they may be long-term, lifestyle goals. Thank you Pennington Law Firm for your gracious contribution to the program. We were able to buy the equipment necessary to teach these boys because of your generosity. We will also be giving these guys a t-shirt that says “Unleash Your Ironman”. We are so excited to serve Columbia, Epworth, and these children. 

Shannon Reagan
Fit Columbia Intern

Angie Sellers
2014 Ribbon Cutting

Watch this video: http://youtu.be/nnGAyY-4yeg  

Fit Columbia ribbon-cutting with @SteveBenjaminSC and @DevineStCola.

Support #smallbusiness #womaninbiz

The ribbon cutting ceremony was a big success. 
Thank you to everyone that came out to support Fit Columbia!

A few thank you love notes:

First, thank you to everyone who took time out of their day to come to the studio and share this moment. I recognize that we all have full schedules and days full of expectations so thank you for changing up your afternoon to be at this event.  I'm so humbled by the words and warm hugs shared that day. 

Natalia brought key officials and Mayor Benjamin to the ribbon-cutting. Thank you Natalia for lunch and talking me through the process  

During the week of the ribbon cutting I was a little blown away by all the details needed to pull it off.  It's important for me to say thank you again to these folks:

Steph, Zach, Sara for staying late and painting and cleaning up before the ribbon cutting putting on the final touches. 

Kelli for making homemade kombucha, green tea and setting up all the refreshments for the event. Also, for painting the black chalkboard stripes on the wall.  Very cool. 

Anne for hanging out with me so graciously on the yoga wall and sharing your gifts. 

Julie for writing my emails, press releases and more that got Fit Columbia on the front page of the state newspaper! Additionally, I sent that email to Meredith Allen and it looks like we will be on her show too!  Thank you Kristy Rupon for writing up a beautiful article and Gerry Melendez for the photos.

Amy for going to Crayton to pick up Avery for me so my daughter could experience this day with me. 

Laurie for bringing in a beautiful bouquet of flowers the morning of the event.

James for gifting and installing the BOSE speakers. 

Leigh for gifting two of the yoga harnesses. 

Richard for running out just minutes before the ribbon-cutting to buy me a ribbon...YES I FORGOT A RIBBON.  Actually, I should thank Joy and Christie too for the idea to run to the nearby florist :)

The thank you list is long and it's my goal to put my gratitude in print as well as in my words and heart. I'm so blessed with this fitness family.  Thank you all.

Angie Sellers
Summer Intern, Deanna Haywood

Being that this was my very first internship I didn't know what to expect, but I'm am pleased to say that I had a wonderful experience assisting Angie during summer conditioning at the Hammond School. Angie, with her many talents, made the workouts for the Varsity and Junior Varsity girls' volleyball team fun and exciting . Working along side Angie I was able to gain valuable skills that will help me in my studies at USC. I want to thank Hammond School and Angie Wolf for this wonderful opportunity.

 -Deanna Haywood

Angie Sellers
Do a Headstand Everyday

10 Reasons to Do a Headstand Every Day

Headstand (Shirshasana) is often referred to as the king of all yoga poses. Here are 10 reasons why headstand should be practiced everyday. 

1. By reversing the flow of gravity, a headstand simulates a “face lift” by letting your skin hang in the opposite direction. The inverted position of a headstand also flushes fresh nutrients and oxygen to the face, creating a glowing effect on the skin. 

2. Headstands increase nutrients and blood flow to the scalp, decreasing onset of grey hair. Some yogis say that it will even convert grey hair back to its natural color! 

3. Headstands stimulate and provide refreshed blood to the pituitary and hypothalamus glands. These glands are vital to our wellbeing, and are considered the master glands that regulate all other glands in the body (thyroid, pineal, and adrenals). This includes our sexual hormones, so you can expect better sex with a consistent headstand practice.

4. When the adrenal glands are flushed and detoxified with headstands, we create more positive thought. Depression will decrease, as going upside down will almost always put a smile on your face. 

5. It's great to bust out a headstand at a party. Your peers will be impressed!

6. Improved circulation occurs with a headstand practice. Because the heart constantly has to pump blood upward to the brain, the headstand gives the heart a rest and reduces unnecessary strain. In addition, while in headstand de-oxygenated blood is able to flow more easily from the extremities to the heart.

7. Any fluid that is retained in the feet is able to drain (edema), therefore reducing the onset and prevalence of varicose veins. 

8. Headstands increase digestive fire and increase body heat. The intestines are cleansed by reversing the pull of gravity, while releasing congested blood in the colon.

9. Headstands strengthen deep core muscles. To hold a straight headstand for an extended period of time, the practitioner must engage the obliques, the rectus abdominus and the transverse abdominus. To really engage and strengthen the core, pike the legs by lifting and/or lowering both legs at the same time when coming in and out of the pose.

10. Eliminate your chances of having an ischemic stroke, as scientific evidence shows that this type of stroke rarely occurs in individuals that consistently do headstands! 

Although I recommend learning headstand from a qualified teacher, its multifaceted benefits should not be ignored. Headstands can be contraindicative if you have neck injuries, extremely high blood pressure, ear and eye problems, if you are menstruating, or have acid reflux.

Stolen from online: http://www.mindbodygreen.com/0-5501/10-Reasons-to-Do-a-Headstand-Every-Day.html

Angie Sellers
First time OCR?

Why do I love obstacle course racing with clients for their first time?  

I love seeing their face at the beginning of a race and watching them  gently walk back and forth with apprehension.  What they don't realize is that after training with me and building the body properly and safely- these obstacles and race lengths are just another experience.  At Fit Columbia, we don't do the same old things over and over so your body and mind are ready for these races.  Post race, I love seeing hearing the clients energized stories and laughter as they realize what they just did. 

I don't think running should be your primary form of fitness but it can be a part of your life and races make it really fun. The energy at each race is soul fueling and while a few want to win, most want to finish.  The majority of these racers want a  story to share and a memory to hold on to.  Walking between obstacles and slowing down as needed is not the same as quitting so let's sign up today!

In post race conversations, my clients talk about the exhilarating feeling of conquering the unknown.  In many races, you know how long the race is and often the course is posted in advance.  In OCR, you don't know if you'll be scrambling over sand dunes, crawling through waist deep cold water or dragging your body under pointy barbed wire but there it is before you and we're going to do it.  These races make your brain "exercise" and your body more tolerant of physical torment.  He he he, I'm kidding about the physical torment but it does increase your ability to be tolerant of being uncomfortable and outside the box and dare I say it? Outside of your head!  It's hard to worry about your bills or the broken lawn mower when you're being asked to drag a concrete block up a hill. 
Last year I ran in OCR, 5K and 10K races with 19 clients who had never run a race. Let's plan something for this summer.  Call me!  :)
 

Angie Sellers
Volleyball & Ankle Braces

Volleyball is known for its ankle injuries and it’s become as common to see ankle braces on players as you do knee pads.  It’s become a cultural thing and many players and coaches are jumping on the bandwagon blindly.  Some coaches have been making ankle bracing mandatory for their players. However, you won’t see them on my daughter unless there is a very good reason to and here’s why:

1.    There’s no proof:  In healthy, active people without a history of ankle sprains, studies have not shown a benefit to wearing braces (those intended to prevent injury). Most studies do not report injury severity, so it is certainly possible that braces aft the severity of sprains-unfortunately there just isn’t good data out there to support it. *Taken from the blog posted below.

2.    Changing up your uniform:  Should you decide to use a brace of any kind, new shoes, new spandex. There should be a trial period at home first. Wear them around the house to get used to them. Do not change your any part of your uniform just before you play a game or practice and this includes shoes, braces, new sports bras etc.

3.    Concern for size: Even the smallest brace may be too large to fit younger kids properly. So parents need to ensure the brace fits properly in order to prevent injury.

4.    Advice from the expert:Coach Millicent Sylvan, The University of Maryland Eastern Shore Volleyball Coach and owner of Anatomy Performance believes coaches should use warm-ups to loosen up the tendons and teach of the girls exercises for their ankles.  She followed this up with the fact that she has played at the collegiate and international level as a middle hitter and has never worn a brace herself.

5.    Advice from the expert: A University of South Carolina Athletic Trainer advises that the focus should be on an ankle strengthening routine rather than adding a brace unless there is a prior injury or they are genetically/structurally prone to injury. Otherwise, they do not need them.

6.    Advice from the expert: Mike Armstrong, Assistant Athletic Director and Strength and Conditioning Coach at Riverbluff High School believes athletes need to train in all planes of motion so the ligaments and tendons can develop properly.  Mike believes using the ankle braces without a pre-existing condition weakens ankles.

7.    Advice from the expert:  Andrea Tyndall Strength and Conditioning Coach for Australian Institute of Sport and Tennis says, “No, No, No! I don’t believe anyone should wear the ankle braces unless they have previously sprained their ankles and then they should be in rehab.”

8.    If you have weak ankles: See a professional to learn ways to strength your ankles at home and if you need additional support, consider using a lace-up or semi-rigid brace instead of a hard-shell brace. The more rigid braces may provide too much immobilization, which may ultimately cause injury in the knees or other lower extremities. There is also some concern that the hard shell braces may prevent athletes from moving properly.

My bottom line:  Young athletes need a chance to develop and they need to be taught how to jump, run, absorb impact and be flexible with a strength/conditioning coach. I’m not sure why coaches are asking their girls to wear braces if most schools and clubs have an athletic trainer and/or strength and conditioning coach.  Unless there is a pre-existing condition or under direction of your doctor; say no to any additional braces.

Finally, Dr. Christopher Mazoue agreed with this blog and would like to add, "Volleyball players need to be taught a good ankle strengthening/proprioceptive  program that should he part of their weekly routine. I also feel they should not wear braces with their strength and conditioning program.

Blog cited above: http://ptsportswellness.wordpress.com/2012/07/20/bracing-for-action-are-ankle-braces-effective-for-volleyball-players/

Angie Sellers