• Exploring Moods and Foods

    3/1/2015 11:02:00 PM | Gretchen Halverson, Itrim Program Manager and Health Coach at Oakland

    We’ve all done it, and sometimes we don’t even realize it is happening.  Maybe you snack when you're bored, or every time you walk by that cookie jar you can’t help but grab a couple cookies. Perhaps when you’re feeling tired or anxious, you grab for that snack food that always makes you feel better.  No matter why food calls your name, one thing rings true: we’ve all eaten something when we are truly not hungry. While this is okay sometimes, too much eating without thinking can affect your weight and overall health.

    When we talk about "mood and foods," we must first talk about "hunger", and what hunger really is. Physiologically, hunger is the only reason to eat, but sometimes we eat for reasons that have nothing to do with hunger.

    How do you know you’re hungry?

    • Hunger is triggered by signals from blood glucose, the hypothalamus, emptiness in the stomach & small intestine, and various hormones, including insulin, ghrelin and leptin.  It’s physiological and not the same as just an “urge” to eat.
    • Hunger feels like an empty, “gnawing” sensation in the stomach, possibly accompanied by a growling/rumbling of the stomach.
    • Prolonged hunger can bring on symptoms, such as a headache, lightheadedness, irritability, lack of energy, or shakiness.  (http://www.webmd.com)

    Understanding Hunger Hormones: Ghrelin and Leptin
    Leptin is a hormone, made by fat cells, that decreases your appetite.  Ghrelin is a hormone that increases appetite, and also plays a role in body weight. Levels of leptin, the appetite suppressor, are lower for people who are thin and higher for those who are overweight.  Many obese/overw...Read More

  • Active Recovery

    2/4/2015 7:47:00 PM | AJ Seeliger, Active Personal Trainer, MS, CSCS, CISSN, CES

    How to Shorten Your Workout Time & Improve Results

    The great majority of people who exercise struggle to find the time they think is necessary to achieve their  goals. Spending hours a day working out, five to six days a week, is often thought to be the only prescription to losing weight and building strength. Because this type of time commitment isn’t sustainable, it may be the reason so many people struggle with keeping New Year’s resolutions and meeting long-term goals. It turns out that active recovery is as important as working out when it comes to losing body weight, building strength and improving your cardiovascular fitness.  

    It’s been shown over the years that strictly using endurance-type cardio routines, like grinding it out on a treadmill or elliptical, only leads to a modest weight loss of around 3.5 pounds after 6 months and 3.7 pounds after one year (1). By comparing the time put into working out with the amount of weight loss achieved, this does not seem like a very efficient plan!

    Improve your efficiency with High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT), a training approach that maximizes benefits while minimizing the time spent exercising (2).  This type of training combines short durations of higher-intensity work with low-intensity active recovery periods.  In half the time of a traditional cardio session, people using HIIT get the same or better benefits of weight loss, improved cardiovascular fitness and higher metabolism. What makes HIIT so special is the higher-than-normal work followed by rest times, referred to as active recovery periods. High-intensity cardio and resistance-training workouts create an increase in lactic acid production, and active recovery removes and buffers this increase  (3).Read More

  • Active's New Year Tips Featured on The Square

    1/13/2015 8:55:00 PM | Monica T.

    Our Active Sports Clubs Union Square team is proud to contribute to The Square, the Union Square Business Improvement District's blog. Check out our latest tips for enjoying life and staying fit in 2015!

    Read more >


  • Monica's FitTips for an Active Lifestyle

    10/17/2014 8:55:00 PM | Monica T.

    Active Sports Clubs Personal Trainer Monica Tatsumi says "I always coach my clients to stay active, have fun, and set small achievable goals along the way for better success." Monica's fitness & nutrition tips work year-round for staying Active when life gets busy. Check them out on The Square.

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  • Welcome Jesse Thomas

    4/18/2014 5:50:00 PM |

    We’re excited to welcome Jesse Thomas as the new ASC Director of Group Fitness. Get to know Jesse by reading his interview below:

    What do you like to eat for breakfast?
    My breakfast typically starts with my Vitamix and a healthy juice made of carrots, banana, kale, spinach, seasonal fresh fruits, flax seeds, chia seeds, Acai or other juice and frozen fruit.  Just blend, and enjoy! Other than juice, it’s usually oatmeal or eggs.

    Describe your perfect workout:
    My perfect workout includes a dynamic warm-up followed by 45 to 60 minutes of a well-rounded, high-intensity workout focusing on biomechanics: power, strength, balance, range of motion, muscular endurance and flexibility. My ideal exercises put my heart on a roller-coaster of intensity and recovery times, and most challenge my core. I'll end my workout with 5 to 10 minutes of static stretching. I look for efficiency when I train; if I’m going to spend an hour working out, I want it to be time well spent. I get mentally focused and bring 100% effort every time.

    What’s your favorite way to spend your free time?
    My free time is spent with my family and friends while doing lots of outdoor adventure type things. I'm an adrenaline junkie, and an outdoor sports fanatic! Hiking, hunting, fishing, backpacking, camping, river rafting, kayaking, stand up paddle boarding, snowboarding, road and mountain biking, roller skating (not rollerblading), playing soccer, basketball, Frisbee, beach volleyball, swimming, surfing, snorkeling; or, just traveling the world taking in endless life experiences and cultures.

    What’s your personal teaching philosophy?
    My goal when teaching/coaching is to help...Read More

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