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INSIGHTS of Running Wolf Fitness Center

By Connie Norman

Hello, my name is Connie Norman and I am the Manager of Running Wolf Fitness Center at 2323 11th Ave. So. We opened our doors within the Phillips Community Center (Phillips Pool and Gym) October 17th , 2011. Already 300 people are registered for Running Wolf.

We have been invited to write Running Wolf Fitness Center news and stories by The Alley Newspaper. We start that this month sharing our staff professional biographies so you can become more familiar with who we are and what assistance we may be to you. Also a few of the most often asked questions on fitness and exercise. In continuing issues we’ll share success stories from Running Wolf Fitness Center.

Connie Norman, Manager

I also work as a Community Health Educator with the Native American Community Clinic and the Stanford University Chronic Disease Self Management Master and T-Trainer through Stanford University. I have worked with Minnesota’s Urban Native American community for over 21 years in community health education. In 1995 I helped develop and maintained membership for 15 years on the Intertribal Annual Health Fair planning committee. I received the 1999 Minnesota Council on Physical Activity and Sports Award of Excellence for my work in improving health in the Native American Community. I assisted with the development of the Full Circle Diabetes Program at NACC and the Diabetes Community Council which won the 2006 Be Active Minnesota Award of Excellence. I graduated from the College of St. Catherine’s as a Health and Wellness Counselor and Holistic Health Practitioner.

Equella Oliver, Jr., Trainer

Equella Oliver Jr. is a NETA Certified Personal Trainer and works part-time as a trainer with Running Wolf. Equella (“Q”) specializes in strength and conditioning programs and custom training routines. Equella (“Q”) likes to challenge and encourage his clients to surpass their physical and mental boundaries by using functional exercise and sound fitness/cardio planning. As your trainer, he will take your health and wellness personally, working alongside you to help achieve ALL of your fitness goals. With your determination and his dedication, you can make anything happen. Don’t wait another minute, if you’re ready to make a change, and ready to start loving your life, join Running Wolf Fitness Center and schedule a session with Equella (“Q”) today.

FREQUENTLY ASKED FITNESS QUESTIONS:

HOW MUCH EXERCISE SHOULD I DO?

Experts recommend 30-60 minutes of exercise per day. The 60-minute suggestion is based on the National Academy of Science’s ideal recommendation for people who are trying to lose weight. But you’ll get real health benefits (and burn lots of calories) even if you don’t work out that much — especially if you haven’t been exercising at all up to now.

While 30 minutes of physical activity is considered enough to lower your risk of heart disease, stroke, and high blood pressure, even 10 minutes a day will do you good. Remember that you don’t have to do all your exercise in one session: A 30-minute aerobics workout in the morning, a 20-minute walk after work, and 10 minutes of mopping the floor after dinner can do the trick. (Don’t forget to include some strength training and stretching in your workouts, too.)

WHAT TYPES OF EXERCISE IS BETTER FOR WEIGHT LOSS?

Choose endurance activities for weight loss such as jogging, aerobics, bicycling, rowing, or swimming.

Exercise at a moderately intense level. You should be able to talk without running out of breath during the activity.

Exercise for more than 40 minutes.

During the first 20 minutes, your body taps into your sugar reserves (carbohydrates stored as blood glucose and muscle glycogen). Between 20 to 40 minutes of exercise, the body continues to use up your sugar reserves and starts to tap into your body fat.

After 40 minutes the body starts to burn even more fat.

Choose aquatic workouts or exercise in the cold. This causes the body to burn more energy and melt fat more quickly. The body draws on its fat reserves to stay warm.

WHERE DO I START IF I HAVE NEVER EXERCISED?

If you’re new to exercise, or have struggled with it in the past, talk with your doctor about your exercise plans. After that, start by incorporating more activity into your daily life. For instance:

If you always take the elevator, try the stairs.

If you try to park next to the door of wherever you’re going, park further away and walk.

If your habit is to eat at your desk, take a 10- to 20-minute walk first, then have your lunch (or take a walk after you eat).

Instead of watching TV all day Saturday and Sunday, plan active weekends. Go to the park, take a walking tour, ride your bike, or row a boat.

If you prefer a more ambitious routine, you can join a gym or try working out at home. Try for 30 to 60 minutes of continuous aerobic activity (such as swimming, biking, walking, dancing, or jogging) at least three to five times a week, at 60% to 90% of your maximum heart rate. Weight training can also help tone your muscles and elevate your resting metabolism rate (the rate that the body burns fuel for energy). Try at least one set (eight to 12 repetitions) each of eight to 10 different exercises, targeting each of the body’s major muscle groups.

Whatever plan you decide on, it’s a good idea to set weekly goals:

Write down what activity you plan to do, on what day of the week, for how long, and at what time of day. Be as specific and realistic as possible. For instance, write down “Tuesday: Walk for 20 minutes at 7 p.m., to the park and back.”

At the end of each week, review your goals and set new ones for the upcoming week.

Research shows that setting goals will help you stick to your program. It will clarify what you’re supposed to do and let you track your progress. If you hit a roadblock later on, you can refer to what has worked in the past, or use your accomplishments to re-energize yourself.

WHAT IF I AM PHYSICALLY UNABLE TO EXERCISE. DUE TO A MEDICAL CONDITION?

There is virtually no medical condition that will keep you from doing any type of exercise. Even people with heart failure – who were long told not to exercise at all – can benefit from moderate amounts of activity.

And people with limited mobility can often do water exercises, or do yoga or other exercises while seated in a chair (some “chair exercise” videos are now on the market). Of course, if you have any medical condition, check with your doctor before starting any exercise program.

Next month we will share a Running Wolf success story! Thanks and Be Well!

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