Author: Andy Sharry

The next 8 weeks to Spartan will begin February 25th and finish April 20th.  This training is for the New Jersey Beast which will be on April 27th.
The cost is $150/10 pack for members and $180/10 pack for non-members.
Members enrolled in the HD program will use their sessions to be involved in the program.
Classes are held Monday 530pm.  Thursday 6pm and Saturday 10am.  The schedule of activities for each class are listed below.
The team is about to embark on a training mission, and the goal is The New Jersey Beast on April 27th. Our plan is to train together, travel together, and race together in small groups.  You'll feel the love throughout the program, and it will culminate with a great day at the beast.
Coach Tracy is skilled at teaching to your specific abilities. Each member of the team will have obstacles and challenges that they excel at and some that are daunting challenges.  That's what makes it special, there are ways to do what you're great at, and many ways to work through the challenges and experience tremendous personal growth.   The program starts on Monday February 25th at 530pm  and runs to Saturday April 20th 10am. As always, you don't have to participate in the races to be part of the team and do the training.  This is for everyone!  The structure of the program will be:
  • Mondays 530pm will be Spartan Strength & Power
  • Thursday 6pm will be Spartan Endurance
  • Saturday 10am will be Spartan Obstacle Training
For those  not currently enrolled in the HD Program for $50/month for 10 HD/Spartan classes, or $75/month for unlimited HD/Spartan classes - you can buy 10 classes for $150, non-members buy 10 classes for $180.  This is open to you, your family and your friends.  The more the merrier!
Enroll in the the program by contacting Andy and by purchasing your 10-session package for $150 for Worcester Fitness Members, or $180 for Non-Members.
Contact me at andy@worcesterfitness.com or Tracy at tracy@worcesterfitness.com with questions.

by Janine McCarthy

NASM Certified Personal Trainer, NASM Corrective Exercise Specialist
Certified Disability Sports Specialist
janine@worcesterfitness.com

How do I get a flat stomach?

Raise your hand if you ever dreamed of having a flat stomach or some washboard abs?!!

Well, unfortunately, we can’t give you one specific answer on how to get there but a personalized workout and nutrition plan for you is certainly a good start.

The dream of a flat stomach or a "six pack" is nice and definitely a goal that can be reached someday, but that day is different for everyone! I do believe that core exercises are the most important aspect of any workout. It is extremely important for someone to create a stable core to help protect their spine during exercises that increase the workload placed on it. Once that stable core is created and maintained throughout your exercises, then a workout plan can start to progress to help decrease body fat leading to a leaner body type.

What is the best way to lose fat?

There is a large population of people seeking a gym membership because they would like to lose weight/fat.

They’ll ask team members at the club what the best way to reach their goal weight is and, although we would love to give a quick simple answer, there is no “best” way to lose fat that can be generalized for everyone.

Each person will react differently to exercise. But fat lost post workout does depend on the exercise intensity during the workout. Generally speaking, research shows that high-intensity workouts tend to increase the rate of fat oxidation compared to low-intensity workouts.  Many people might believe that they can come to the gym and hop on some cardio machine and lose weight. But if you really want to use the gym to its fullest and get the most beneficial workout, try adding strength training, getting more sleep, lessening alcohol consumption, and always remember- VARIETY!

Your muscles have a memory and your body will only make changes as long as you make changes. Too often we hear people mention that they feel they have "hit a plateau." Your body will only adjust to the amount of workload placed on it!

How do I get a flat stomach?

Raise your hand if you ever dreamed of having a flat stomach or some washboard abs?!!

Well, unfortunately, we can’t give you one specific answer on how to get there but a personalized workout and nutrition plan for you is certainly a good start.

The dream of a flat stomach or a "six pack" is nice and definitely a goal that can be reached someday, but that day is different for everyone! I do believe that core exercises are the most important aspect of any workout. It is extremely important for someone to create a stable core to help protect their spine during exercises that increase the workload placed on it. Once that stable core is created and maintained throughout your exercises, then a workout plan can start to progress to help decrease body fat leading to a leaner body type.

What are the best exercises to do?

People always want to know the "best exercises" they can do in the gym.

What defines “best” for one person may not be considered the “best” for another. When choosing an exercise - many factors should be considered such as,

• What type of cardiovascular workout will this be and what are the specific benefits?
• Which strength training method is more appropriate? Machines, free weights or just bodyweight exercises and how much?

The best exercises within a workout are dependent upon the person's goals. Working with a personal trainer to define those goals and help implement a plan to achieve them could be one of the more efficient ways to spend your time at the gym. Because it is PERSONAL training, a program BEST suited for your needs.

Why am I sore for so long?

Being sore after a workout is not a “bad” reaction.  it is very common for many of us as we increase our workout routine during a short period of time; we are then sore for a longer period of time.

This happens to be one of the most common “injuries” also known as DOMs, Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness.

DOMS displays as discomfort within the muscles about 24-hours following the end of a workout but with higher peaks between the 24 and 72-hour marks. Generally, 48 hours is the when the sorest/most painful sensations are experienced.

A DOMS "FUN FACT": Exercise is the most effective means of alleviating pain during DOMS! (YAAAAAY!!!!)

What is the difference between weight and body fat?

Simply put: Weight is the degree to which a body is drawn toward the earth by gravity whereas Body Fat is the percentage of adipose tissue (fat) compared with muscle.

When/How much protein do I need?

Dietary reference intake states that an individual should have .8g of protein per kilogram of body weight OR .36g of protein per pound of body weight. As far as after a workout, if you are trying to maintain muscle, then the range is .54-.64 grams per pound of body weight.

Can I work out every day?

The body is meant to move everyday yes but we must also “listen” to our bodies

Doing the same exercises every day for a long period time could lead to improper body mechanics but it also creates that plateau mentioned earlier – if you do not make any changes then the body will not make any changes!

What is more beneficial- working out or nutrition?

Remember: You can't outwork a bad diet! Both a workout routine in conjunction with a well-balanced nutrition plan is the best route to go. More important though is always making sure that you are feeding your body the nutrients (macro and micro) that are needed to stay healthy with foods that increase the benefits rather than increase the risks.

When should I be stretching?

Static stretching means a stretch is held in a challenging but comfortable position for a period of time, usually somewhere between 10 to 30 seconds.

Static stretching is the most common form of stretching found in general fitness and is considered safe and effective for improving overall flexibility. However, many experts consider static stretching much less beneficial than dynamic stretching for improving range of motion for functional movement, including sports and activities for daily living.

Dynamic stretching means a stretch is performed by moving through a challenging but comfortable range of motion repeatedly, usually 10 to 12 times. Although dynamic stretching requires more thoughtful coordination than static stretching (because of the movement involved), it is gaining favor among athletes, coaches, trainers, and physical therapists because of its apparent benefits in improving functional range of motion and mobility in sports and activities for daily living.

Dynamic stretching is controlled, smooth, and deliberate.

Our team of highly qualified and experienced Health and Wellness Professionals work with a wide variety of people with uniques body types, diverse backgrounds, and experience levels.  

We hear so many questions from members that we wanted to share with you the most common and the thoughtful answers we share with our awesome members.

If you have questions not addressed here or need help reaching your goals, please contact our Fitness Director Andy Sharry - andy@worcesterfitness.com

Sam has been a W.I.T.S. Certified Personal Trainer for two years.  

He started as in intern at Worcester Fitness in 2017 and soon earned a position as the welcome desk and as a personal trainer.  

He also leads small group training sessions with a focus on teen athletes. He has helped teens and adults and seniors to build healthy strength and endurance.

Sam believes that nutrition and personal health are not just a job to him, but instead is his true passion!

Sam grew up in Rutland, MA and now resides in Paxton, MA.

He attended Wachusett Regional High School.  

Sam loves to play Disc Golf and hike in his free time away from Worcester Fitness.

Quote “A moment of pain is worth a lifetime of glory”- Louis Zamperini

MAXIMUM OUTPUT CYCLE

Meg Paradis' MAXIMUM OUTPUT CYCLE is BACK!

Join this high intensity/maximum output cycle and strength class, that focuses on power, perceived exertion, speed, and strength! TWO new sessions!  Each individual will be building from their own base gear on the bike, and will have to reach specific watts designated for intervals. Short bursts on the bike, to follow with short intervals of strength exercises off the bike, with all receiving a high cardio intense full body workout.

Class each week will have a different format, more intensified and personal to the participants.

Summer Session 1

Tuesdays • 5:45am-6:45am
May 8 - June 12
5:45am-6:45am

Class Fee- $119-6 Weeks

Open to Members & Non-Members
Limited to 8 Participant

Summer Session 2

Tuesdays • 5:45am-6:45am
July 10 - July 31
5:45am-6:45am

Class Fee- $80-4 Weeks

Open to Members & Non-Members
Limited to 8 Participant

Last Sunday (March 4, 2018) Worcester Fitness hosted our very first "Spin for Kids" event as part of our Fitness for a Cause Program. The event was in support of our friends at Why Me Sherry's House. We welcomed Why Me families and friends, the Worcester Fitness team, and 55 different riders to the club.

What a ride!

As a group, we raised over $22,000 for for Why Me Sherry's House...in just four hours.

We want to thank every one of the 50+ riders who dedicated their Sunday morning  to raise money for this fantastic organization.

We could not have done this without our amazing sponsors. A very special thank you to all of our friends at S&G Business Consultants, Sansoucy Stone, One Off Apparel, Group Benefit Strategies, Creedon & Co., Barry Electric. We are also grateful to our photographers - Jim Ushkurnis Photography and Joe Santa Maria of  Kill the Ball Media

Still interested in making a donation? It is not too late... visit our donation page!

As we enter into our 40th year, we at Worcester Fitness can look back on a long history of connecting with our community with fondness and pride.  We've always held the fundamental belief that it is our responsibility as a local company to play a leadership role in supporting local charitable organizations who look to us for assistance.  We are a family owned and operated health and wellness club located in Worcester, and we've been here for 40 years.  Our Worcester roots run deep, and we're proud of that.  Staff and members affectionately refer to us as Worcester Fitness Nation.  In 2017, we in the nation answered the call and delivered help to those in need. 
 
2017 may have been our finest year for giving back.  When discussing charity and giving back, we are not just referring to the monetary and in-kind donations to countless causes that we make as a company.  We're talking about the time, effort and money that our members race to offer those who need it the most.  We believe in charity, and love providing the platform for our members to give, but it's the generosity and compassion of our members that drives our philanthropic efforts forward.  2017 saw more than $75,000 raised and donated.  $75,000 in one year, generated by this little health club on Grove Street and it's friendly, kind and generous members!  $75,000 that went to local partners in need such as Ivy Child International, Worcester Animal Rescue League, Why Me/Sherry's House, Veterans Inc, Dana Farber Cancer Center, American Cancer Society, Mary Beth Benison Foundation, Fit Club Foundation, Planting the Seed FoundationAbby's House and Homes for Our Troops.  
 

Staff and members are also strongly involved with the Worcester Public School Mini-Olympics program where we volunteer our time to cheer and support athletes in the Fall and Spring events.  We also provide uniforms for all students who participate, with over 35 colors unique to each school so the young athletes can proudly unify while representing their school.

 
We raised our money in unique and fun ways like our seasonal Touch the Tower  Run/Walk to Bancroft Tower and back.  Our annual Spin-a-Thon held every March has raised $31,000 in the last two years.  Our new Knock-out 90 breast cancer event was held in October and is sure to become a big part of our annual fundraising campaigns.  When two Worcester Fitness members were diagnosed with devastating cancer, Worcester Fitness Nation held a big bash and raised money to assist them in their drive to get well.  Our monthly Yoga for A Cause events raised money for several small, local agencies in Worcester.  The Worcester Fitness Running Team traveled to the Marine Corps Marathon in Washington, D.C. and raised $34,000 for Homes for Our Troops.  Our year was capped off with our Merry Midnight Madness ultimate fitness and endurance event, we finished the year in style putting us well over $75,000 raised in 2017.
 

2018 is our 40th year, and we have planned a wonderful series of unique, fun, exciting, and innovative ways to engage our members while making significant contributions to local charities right here in Worcester.  For more on our connection to the community, past and future events, please contact me, andy@worcesterfitness.com

Charlie LeBlanc

By Andy Sharry and Meg Paradis
Worcester Fitness
 
Charles “Charlie” LeBlanc is a long time, valued member of the Worcester Fitness family dating back to 2000. His smiling face is a staple in our evening indoor cycling classes. He rides hard, but does so with good nature, high spirit and positive vibe. When not in the spin room, Charlie, 59, works diligently in the weight room to maintain his broad shoulders, barrel chest and overall imposing stature. “Charlie is an extremely deep caring, gentle giant’, says Worcester FItness Spin Instructor Meg Paradise.
 
“There is a song that I play as a cool down after spin class called "Humble and Kind". Whenever it plays, he lights up and says to everyone "This song is what it is all about."

Spending time around Charlie, you would never guess that his life story includes a very serious accident that nearly ended his life. As you’ll read, this tragic accident never stole away his faith that he would once again return to health and strength.
 
In July of 2002, Charlie and his friend went on a 14 mile bike ride in the late afternoon hours. Before leaving, he spoke with his wife, and left a message on his mother’s answering machine expressing his love for both. “One thing that this experience has taught me is to never leave anything unsaid. I love you could have been my last words my wife and mother heard from me.”

 
Charlie was travelling 40 mph as he rounded a bend in the road coming from a shaded area to bright sunlight area. There he saw a Dodge Ram pickup stopped in the left lane coming up the hill with its left directional on. Unfortunately, he never saw Charlie and accelerated into the turn. Charlie considered going around the back of the truck but there was traffic coming down the hill and didn’t want to get hit broadside, so he tried to make the turn with the truck. He collided with the truck just at the front fender. “My head hit the windshield and shoulders and upper chest took most of the impact.”, said Charlie. To this day, he really doesn’t remember much of the accident just yelling “NO” immediately before the collision occurred.
 
Moments later Charlie was discovered lying face up on top of his bike, covered in blood. The EMT found that his carotid artery on the left side of his neck was cut. Thankfully, the quick thinking EMT placed his fingers into his neck and straightened the artery, packed the wound and placed him in the ambulance
 
In the accident, Charlie cracked the windshield with his head, bent the windshield strut, took off the outside mirror, blew in the passenger window and crushed in the passenger door. Local police commented that the damage to the large pickup truck was very similar to the damage done when a car strikes a moose. Charlie credits his diligent work in the weight room at Worcester Fitness for saving his life, “This is where the strength training played an important role in my survival. At the time of the accident I was 6’ and weighed 230 lbs with about 12% body fat and I’m certain that my size and strength helped absorb the impact”
 
Charlie had broken the odontoid bone in his neck, fractured his jaw in three places, broke his right collarbone, separated his left shoulder, broke all ribs, collapsed both lungs, bruised his heart and cerebellum, and had a stroke to his brain stem. The doctors gave him a less than a 50% chance for survival and he received last rites several times over the next few days and flatlined a few times that first week.
 

Within a few weeks, Charlie was moved to Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston, and was in a coma for more than a month. He and his family were informed that he would most likely be a quadriplegic and might have permanent brain damage. His robust weight went from 230lbs down to 180lbs, but Charlie was rapidly showing vast improvements in his motor skills. He amazed his family and doctors with how quickly he healed and improved. 6 weeks after the accident, he was transported to Fairlawn Rehabilitation in Worcester, MA where he learned how to walk again. In typical Charlie fashion, by the end of the first week he had discarded his walker for a cane and was mobile again. Finally, he was able to eat solid food, and gained back some of the weight that he had lost. Charlie used his time in the rehab hospital to do some deep thinking, “I could sit there and pity myself or thank God for letting me live. I prayed and told God that if this were how I would have to live my life I’d make the best of it.”
 
Eight months following the accident, Charlie’s returned to his pre-accident weight of 230 pounds, was riding the stationary bike and elliptical machine for 1 hour. The nerves in his leg were showing signs of regeneration and he was totally off all medications. Within no time, Charlie was back outside on his bike, riding for fun and for charity in races like the Great Mass Getaway for Multiple Sclerosis . Once again, he was riding 30, 50, 75 mile rides. “I can attribute my amazing recovery to the incredible people and spin classes at Worcester Fitness. I was fit before my accident, and I know that my high level of fitness helped me recover fully and quickly.”

When Charlie looks back over all that has happened in the 15 years since the accident, he says that all his experiences and relationships with friends and family have all been affected positively. “Several people have told me that this must have been the worst year of my life, and my answer to them is "It was the best year of my life". "I'm Still Here! Miracles Do Happen!” When asked about Charlie, Worcester Fitness Personal Trainer and Group Exercise Instructor Denleigh Grniet said, “ Charlie teaches us how important it is to ask if what is bothering us now really makes a difference. If it won’t matter in 5 months, we should just let it go, focusing on staying positive and gracious.”
 
We at Worcester Fitness are thrilled to have played a role in Charlie’s recovery and return to strength. We love having him as part of our family and are inspired by his strength and resiliency he’s shown for the years since his accident. According to Meg, “Charlie is an amazing guy. It's an honor to know him, and hear his incredible story of strength and survival.”

Reimagining Athletic Performance for Young Female Athletes

By Janine McCarthy
Contact Janine with Questions 
 
Worcester Fitness is proud to announce our brand new program especially designed for young female athletes, Girls EmPowered!
 
This athletic development program is designed to develop well-rounded & strong female athletes with an emphasis on core stability, proper movement patterns, balance and strength. Increased confidence during practices, games, and most importantly during non-sport times. Specifically designed for Middle School aged girls (grades 6,7, and 8).
 
The head coach for this program is Worcester Fitness Master Trainer Janine McCarthy. Janine is a lifelong athlete with a passion for leading young women into positions of strength and power on the court, field or diamond and off. She played soccer & track/field at St. Peter-Marian and went on to play soccer & track/field at Lock-Haven University. She is the head coach of the girls varsity soccer team at Notre Dame Academy.
 

"We have a special group of young female athletes who play soccer, field hockey, basketball, softball, dance, and lacrosse. They are here to build up the foundation of what they need to succeed", says Program Director Janine McCarthy, "That's core stability and strength, balance and proper movement patterns. All the while, we are instilling the solid message that they are super strong girls with super confidence and strength!"
 
 
Class Details
 
Mondays
November 13th - December 18th
3:30PM-4:30PM
 
Tuesdays
November 14th - December 19th
3:30PM-4:30PM
 
Program Fee
$50.00 per athlete
Maximum of 20 athletes per session.

More Ways to Score!

By Janine McCarthy
Contact JANINE with Questions 
 
FITNESS SCRAMBLERS! Just an FYI about tomorrow's DRAFT--you don't have to be at Worcester Fitness when we put all the teams together! We'll emails you, text you, FB you, yell across the parking lot...as soon as the teams are drawn!
 
PLUS--we've added some more "YARD GAINING" activities! Check 'em all out and do what you LOVE!
 
Bike(spin class)/treadmill/elliptical 1mile = 1yd
Stairs 50 flights = 1yd
Rower 1600m = 1yd
Group fitness
HD = 4yds
Group classes = 3yds
Aqua/yoga/Pilates = 2yds

Challenge Schedule

Start Date - November 10, 2017

End Date - December 22, 2017

Prizes awarded to winning team and season's "Most Valuable Player!"

Sign up for this Fitness Challenge

Worcester Fitness Fitness Scramble!

By Janine McCarthy
Contact JANINE with Questions 
 
Worcester Fitness is launching a brand new fitness challenge...this time with football theme!
 
The Worcester Fitness Fitness Scramble will place you on an NFL team with nine teammates. The season will last six weeks. Each member of the team will earn yardage through cardiovascular equipment activities right here at Worcester Fitness.
 
As the yards build up, so will the scores! Teams score a touchdown after 100 yards are accumulated and recorded by Fitness Scramble Ref, Janine McCarthy!
 
Choose your own equipment:
 
Treadmill activity will generate one yard of forward progress per mile of running/walking. Stairclimbers and Ellipticals will help you7 move the ball down the field a yard for every fifty flights. Hit the rower for one yard for every 1,600 meters.
 
Want to put some points on the board early? Cash in 50 yards and pick up a three point field goal. Extra points are awarded if your teams corresponding NFL team wins their game that week.
 
Fitness Scramble takes guts, determination and plenty of team work!

Challenge Schedule

Start Date - November 10, 2017

End Date - December 22, 2017

Prizes awarded to winning team and season's "Most Valuable Player!"

Sign up for this Fitness Challenge

Tricia Stepanski Plouffe

By Andy Sharry
Worcester Fitness
 
"Worcester Fitness has and will continue to make a huge positive difference in my life!"

In January of 2017, I was extremely ill with the flu and almost died.  It took 6 weeks of bed rest to regain strength, energy and to start to feel “normal”.   Due to the 6 weeks of bed rest, my knee area showed signs of atrophy, thus resulting in my inability to walk well or use stairs.  I was in constant pain.  Once completed with my physical therapy at Saint Vincent Hospital, they referred me to Worcester Fitness.  Before joining Worcester Fitness, however, I chose to visit 5 gyms in the city and assessed St. Vincent’s was correct in sending me to Worcester Fitness.  Worcester Fitness stood out tremendously from the other gyms. The environment is professional, clean, calm, attractive and totally focused on service.

I joined the gym in May and a program was initiated on my behalf.  Janine became my personal trainer; Dani became my massage therapist.  By meeting with Janine and Dani at different and regular intervals, I started a personally tailored program that has proven to be of enormous help for major health improvements.   The combined efforts of Janine, Dani and I, have turned my health around for the better.

I am no longer in pain.  I can walk up and down stairs with confidence and comfort.  I can get up from sitting on the floor without needing assistance or something to hold.  I have returned to country western line dancing, something I had missed for years.  My balance is greatly improved. My posture is totally different.  My strength and stamina greatly surpasses when I started.  I ride the stationary bike 5 miles a day and continue to increase my walking time on a treadmill.  Emotionally, I feel happier and more centered. I now am at the gym 4-5 days a week (with or without individualized attention) and have changed my lifestyle to ensure even greater health.   I also have been motivated to change the foods I eat and thus have lost 30 pounds and counting!

I am grateful to the professionals and patrons at Worcester Fitness who have helped me alter my life.  I now understand the benefits of creating healthful time for myself and providing tutelage on body enhancing techniques that literally have resulted in no pain and excellent physical health. 

StrongTeam™

Did you know that Worcester Fitness offers team building programs? Our StrongTeam™ training program is the perfect combination of motivational coaching and group fitness training.

Recently, Andy Sharry and Meg Paradis conducted a session with Wachusett Regional High School's Girl's Vollyball Team that included a rocking spin class taught by Andy and Meg followed by a motivational discussion on the power of THE TEAM.

We are looking forward to working with YOUR team or business group! Contact Andy Sharry to schedule a StrongTeam™ Session at Worcester Fitness for your team!