We can help you determine if you might be overtraining

You can’t flip open a magazine or turn on the television without seeing or hearing someone going on and on about the multitude of benefits from getting regular exercise. No doubt each of those messages will be accompanied by recommendations of what to do, how long to do it for, and what results you might see as a result. And so we piece these recommendations together and suddenly find ourselves working out hard every day, sometimes multiple workouts in the same day. But is that much exercise a good thing?


In short, it depends. Many athletes engage in multiple workouts every day. For the non-athlete, however, doing that much without the proper coaching can do more harm than good. The term we use to describe exercising too much is “overtraining”. It is likely that almost every athlete and most health-conscious exercisers have experienced this to some degree, even without realizing it. If ignored, overtraining can set you back and even lead to injury.


We recognize overtraining by noting certain symptoms that tend to cluster together. For example, lack of energy, being easily fatigued, and feeling irritable are strong indicators of overtraining. Other reliable gauges are a lack of motivation to exercise, frequent sickness, prolonged muscle soreness, and lack of progress. These symptoms, especially when experienced together, make a convincing argument that you are overtraining.


There are an array of remedies for overtraining, and most are quite simple and economical. Rest, taking a few days off for an extended recovery period, is often the most effective intervention. Take the time to analyze your nutrition and hydration to make sure it is sufficient for the activities you are engaging in. Meet with a certified personal trainer to examine your exercise program so that it can be made more efficient and specifically tailored to your goals. Have session with a licensed massage therapist to help with muscle soreness and fatigue. Try a Pilates, yoga, or a spin class if these are not in your usual routine.


If after reading this article you are questioning whether you might be overtraining, please consult any member of the staff here at Worcester Fitness. We can help you determine if you might be overtraining and can recommend an appropriate intervention to get you back on track. As they say in medicine, “the dose makes the poison.” This is as true of exercise as it is with everything else. Be vigilant, work hard, play hard, and never be afraid to reach out and ask a professional for advice.

Keeping our muscles pliable is HARD WORK!

Sometimes we don’t have the time to do all the hard work ourselves, and other times we don’t have the ability to do what needs to be done on our own. Stretching is something we all know we should do, but don’t do enough.

Aspects of stretching are as much neurological as muscular, and our therapists are trained in many of these techniques. Often, we mix these techniques in during a typical Sports Massage.

Assisted stretching has been used with professional athletes for several years. Most recently, professional golfers with the PGA enjoy the benefits of assisted stretching and massage at PGA events.

Other high profile athletes, like Tom Brady, have been more interested in pliability over brute strength for performance and longevity.

Assisted stretching is an incredible program ideal for golfers, racquetball and tennis players, runners and athletes from any sport!

Our therapists, Steve and Chris, are available to do regional or full-body stretches. During these sessions, you stay dressed while your therapist works on lengthening your muscles.

Sessions are available for 30 or 60 minutes!

30 minutes - $45
60 minutes - $79

Book an Appointment

Assisted Stretching

Back Pain Action Plan

By Christopher Jones, Worcester Fitness Massage Therapist

Low back pain is one of the most common pain complaints in the United States, with about 80% of people having at least one incident of back pain in their lifetime. Globally, back pain causes more disability than 291 other health problems. In one study conducted in a joint effort between Australian and US-based researchers, 20 years of data from 187 countries showed that just over one-third of work-related disability was related to low back pain. That is a lot of missed work, missed play, and missed opportunities every day. So how did we get to a point where back pain is so common?

Let’s start with a quick look at the back. The back is a strong, supportive structure made up of the bones of the spinal column (24 vertebrae, sacrum, coccyx,) the shock-absorbing discs between the vertebrae, and all of the muscles and connective tissue responsible for movement and stability of the spine. Housed within the protective confines of the spine is the spinal cord, and between the vertebrae are the nerves that extend out to all parts of the body. When the back is strong and healthy, all of these structures work harmoniously to let us work, play, and live our lives. When back pain is experienced, however, it can make it difficult to engage in even the most basic of activities.

Back pain can have many causes, including degenerative joint disease (also called osteoarthritis), disc degeneration, bulging disc or disc herniation, spondylolisthesis (one vertebrae slips forward), spinal stenosis (narrowing of the canal inside the spinal cord), tumors, and infection. Please note that these conditions can be present and produce no pain symptoms whatsoever. Unfortunately, the most common type of back pain is what is called “non-specific low back pain” where there is no apparent cause for the pain. Other factors that can contribute to back pain include prolonged periods of inactivity, poor lifting techniques, high-impact sports and activities, excessive sitting, and previous back injury. A growing body or current research also points to many psychological factors (anxiety, depression, job satisfaction) as contributing to back pain.

The good news to all this is that the best preventative strategy and treatment method for back pain is to keep moving! Regular physical activity, even something as simple as walking, has been shown to be the most effective tool to prevent and recover from episodes of back pain (especially non-specific low back pain). The best evidence for back pain management shows the effectiveness of a positive outlook on recovery, engaging in as many normal daily activities as possible, maintaining an active lifestyle, and the strategic short-term use of medication when needed. Interventions like heat, physical therapy, massage therapy, yoga, and psychotherapy have also been shown to be effective additions for the treatment and prevention of back pain.

Here at Worcester Fitness, we have a team of professionals ready to help with the prevention and treatment of back pain. Whether you are looking to improve your fitness with one of our experienced trainers, looking for pain relief from our expert massage therapists, or are wanting see if yoga or one of our pool exercise classes is a good fit for you, our team is ready to answer your questions and guide you in the right direction. Back pain, despite the numbers, does not have to be something that “just happens” or keeps you from enjoying the things you love to do. With the right steps, and some expert guidance, you can get back on track!

Massage Therapy and Oncology

Oncology Massage

By Dani Eagan, Massage Therapist
Worcester Fitness • Email Dani 

Over 1.5 million new cases of cancer are diagnosed each year in the U.S. alone. Chances are cancer has effected you or someone you love.
Oncology Massage is tailored and unique to every individual based on many factors including but not limited to their treatment and their symptoms.

1.5 Million New Cases

A trained Oncology Massage Therapist will complete an assessment to your individual treatment plan. This will include a full health history including your cancer history, treatments and symptoms. We will also discuss any and all goals you may have. Session goals as well as long term treatment goals. Goals can consist of anything from scar tissue and increased range of motion to something as simple as relaxation and general pain relief. Goals can be changed at anytime. Even with goals and constant treatment limitations and modifications may be life long. A part of this process is finding your new normal and to going from there. Due to contraindications and treatments you want to make sure that you are seeing an Oncology Certified Massage Therapist.

Oncology Massage

The majority of Oncology Massage is meant to be comfort oriented focusing on relaxation and pain relief. the other side of that may be more therapeutic and include techniques that can help with your rehabilitation. Regardless of what stage you are in Oncology Massage has proven to increase quality of life and your over all wellbeing.
A 2014 study showed that 100% of patients who received a 1 hour relaxation massage 3 times a week for 7 weeks experienced: Stress reduction, Increased comfort, relaxation and quality of life. As well as Decreased fatigue and nausea.


Oncology Massage has been proven to provide help with many ailments, including but not limited to: Anxiety, depression, Pain, Nausea, fatigue, healing, peripheral neuropathy, immune system support, symptom relief, as well as physical, psychological and emotional side effects from the cancer as well as the treatments.
There are many forms of cancer. Oncology Massage helps with Physical, Psychological and emotional relief, not only for patients but caregivers as well.

Is more exercise the answer?

By Steve Dozois, Licensed Massage Therapist
Worcester Fitness Massage
This time of year a lot of us have renewed dedication to health and fitness goals.  We make our way to the gym or do our own workout routines more frequently and try to eat a little better.  For others, this is almost a "rest" time as their training season is getting ready to start.

Consequences of Activity

What happens to your body when you increase your physical activity or try a new fitness routine?  If you're doing it right, you will be sore for a day or two, because you are increasing the load on your muscles and activating other muscle groups that aren't used to the work.    So, then what?  If you have goals of really improving your fitness and performance, you can't afford to rest.  There is also research to suggest that the best thing for sore muscles is more exercise! 

However, there is a fine line to walk.

Form is the thing!

The danger of not recovering properly is that at some point, your form will begin to breakdown.  That could be your running, swimming, cycling, squat, or any other movement form.  When your form falls apart, that's when injuries can occur.  When your form is off your body starts recruiting other muscles to do the motion, and when pushed too hard those muscles may cave with the added and unusual work load, creating pain.

Take Care!

So, how do you keep pushing yourself without getting injured?  You need to take care of your muscles, tendons, and joints.  Think of it like brushing your teeth.  To have proper teeth and mouth health, it is recommended to brush your teeth 2-3 times per day and visit your dentist every six months.  There are many ways to maintain your muscles and connective tissue.  Some of the most effective are various stretching activities, foam rolling, or self myofacial release, and of course visiting a qualified massage therapist who understands your activities and goals.

Just Ask

Want to learn more about how to maintain your muscles at home or at the gym?  Ask one of our personal trainers or massage therapists, and we'll show you some great, efficient techniques!

Changing Direction

Written by Roland J. Hamelin
Editors note- Worcester Fitness will be launching it's brand new Massage Therapy Department led by Steve Dozois on January 1, 2017.

What do you do when you are really good at something, extremely successful as a result and seen as someone with unlimited potential within your industry?
If you're Steve Dozois, you decide that you should be doing something completely different.
So you do it.

Looking for changes

Steve started his professional life by spending ten-years learning and mastering the highly competitive world of business-to-business sales as an account representative for a global office supply corporation. The harder Steve worked, the more successful he became.
But something was missing.
With the economic upheaval of late 2008 and 2009, the office supply industry (along with most others) hit a brick wall. Steve was adapting but the personal satisfaction was gone.
He knew it was time for a change...and a big one at that.
He looked for a way to transition away from sales goals and budgets and into a field that would allow him to help people feel better, be healthier and relieve stress.

Time to reflect

Steve has been certified and licensed for Massage Therapy in Massachusetts since 2009 with a primary focus on overall health and wellness, and an interest in Sports Massage. After tearing his ACL in 2011, having surgery to reconstruct it, and subsequently going through physical therapy, he had a renewed interest in Sports Massage and massage for injury rehabilitation.
"I became a massage therapist  to help people enjoy day to day life more without worrying about injuries." says Steve,  Through my practice, I've dedicated myself to providing the best care for pain relief as well as overall health and wellness."


Deep Tissue and Sports Massage are Steve's specialties. His Goal- to help relieve you of every day aches and pains while working specific muscles for your athletic training so you experience improved performance and proper recovery.
"Aches and pains associated with working in today's offices has been a specialty of mine after spending eight years in the office interiors industry." says Steve, "I spent the majority of my time in the industry focusing on office ergonomics."
Steve states that his experience with office ergonomics gave him a unique understanding of how people work at their desk, how they SHOULD work at their desk, what their common complaints are, and how to address them.
Steve also works with many marathoners and triathletes in the area to help them reach their peak performance.