Fit For You

Fit For You: PiYo

Apr 29, 2017
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You may have heard of or even taken a yoga or Pilates class, but have you ever tried PiYo? PiYo is a fitness format created by Chalene Johnson that takes the strength and flexibility of yoga and combines it with the sculpting and core strengthening advantages of Pilates. This results in an effective, low impact workout.

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Humans have always been in search of a fountain of youth. We enjoy the wisdom age brings, but are not so enamored with the physical breakdowns that come along with it. And, many have come up ways to try to reverse, or at least stall, the ageing process.

Photo courtesy of David Howell

 

It takes a special relationship with biking - and yourself - to embark on a solo bike tour from Seattle, Washington all the way to Milwaukee. That’s exactly what Milwaukee native David Howell did, and his journaling during that experience spawned a book, The Descent Into Happiness: A Bicycling Journey over the Cascades and Rockies and across the Great Plains.

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Many people set New Year’s resolutions regarding weight loss, exercise and health. From Atkins to Paleo to cleanses, there is never a shortage of diet fads and trends.  Yet, every January people make the same resolution - over and over again.

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The old saying goes that nothing is certain but death and taxes. We can add another certainty to that list: our muscles will weaken and even atrophy as we age, unless we take care of them by strength building and exercise. In other words, you really do need to move it, or you will lose it.

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Perhaps it’s an obvious point, but pregnancy is a taxing time on a woman’s body.  The cliché is that during those nine months, a woman is doing everything for two – eating, sleeping, and exercising.

And if you’re used to doing all of those things for one, understanding what’s best for you and your baby can be a daunting task.  Megan Shemanske, a local fitness team leader and pre/post-natal fitness certified by the American Council of Exercise,  stresses that the old cliché is not exactly true.

POUND Fitness

If you enjoy blaring your music while you workout but have yet to step into a group class session, there may just be a new fitness format for you.

POUND utilizes elements of music and drumming into a full-body workout that combines cardio, conditioning and strength training with low impact movements. Created by recreational drummers and former athletes, this new format has grown from its first class in a Los Angeles basement into a global network.

Audrey Nowakowski

Just because the weather is getting colder, doesn’t mean you can't keep cycling. Whether you’re facing the cold or in a room on a stationary bike, cycling is an effective cardiovascular workout for any time of year.

If you’re not into facing the cold and don’t just want to ride the stationary bike, most gyms and fitness centers offer cycling, or spinning class.

Fit For You: Yoga

Oct 31, 2016
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When yoga comes to mind, perhaps you can imagine a warmly lit room with incense and calm music playing while people sit cross-legged on a mat, or a public TV show with women stretching on a beach. But did you know you can easily do yoga on a walk or sitting in the car?

"(Yoga) is very accessible for anyone and to do those pretzel poses is not even necessary, honestly," says local certified yoga instructor Heather Eiden. She explains that at the practice's core is centered the body and mind and working towards balance - not just physically, but also spiritually.

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Have you ever gone to a group exercise class? Your answer may well depend on whether you’re a man or a woman.  It turns out the majority of people in group exercise classes - including the instructors - are female.

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The weight room is often a place of intimidation – for men and women alike. However, too often weight rooms and floors are dominated by men while women stick to the cardio equipment.

However the tide is turning, and women are being encouraged to start integrating weight lifting into their routines. But for many women, weight lifting can seem like a daunting challenge, and one that’s difficult to start.

Audrey Nowakowski

Crossfit, the high-powered, high intensity interval-based workout, has been very popular in recent years, with gyms devoted to the program popping up all over the fitness landscape.

But for a lot of people, CrossFit can be intimidating. Often the images people are exposed to involve an elite athletes in competition, making the sport appear to be inaccessible and/or high risk.

However, CrossFit at its very base is simply "constantly varied functional movements performed at high intensity."

Photo courtesy of Jen Miller

New Jersey based freelance writer and runner Jen Miller wrote an article for the New York Times last fall that described her journey through weight gain and loss while she was competing in marathons. The article, Crossing the Finish Line 25 Pounds Lighter, was shared across social media and continues to prompt discussions about what a healthy body looks like.

Michelle Maternowski / WUWM

Barre studios and classes have become very popular over the past few years, but the practice itself has been around since 1959.

Professional ballerina Ladi Burke developed the barre method after injuring her back. Still wanting to be active and conditioned, Burke combined her dance exercises with rehabilitative therapy to maintain greater flexibility, balance and strength.

Photo by Michelle Maternowski

Do you remember the last time you were on a trampoline? If you’re an adult, it may well have been years ago.

But have you ever thought that you can go back to your youth? Getting back on a trampoline can indeed make you feel like a kid again, but a new fitness format allows you to have fun while getting an effective workout at the same time. 

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