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Options abound for obtaining fitness information

There are so many different ways to obtain information about fitness these days. From Facebook to gaming systems and fitness videos to personal trainers, there’s a flood of new information seemingly every day.

As a consumer, it can be difficult to decide where to turn for information that will be most beneficial to you while keeping in mind your lifestyle, current health, technology level and fitness goals. You might choose one or all sources available to you.

The Internet offers a wealth of helpful information. Questions can be answered in seconds. Recipes and fitness tips rank among some of the top searches. With so much information streaming at all times, though, it can be tricky deciding what’s legitimate and what’s a sales tactic. One site might tell you “the cabbage soup diet can help you lose 30 pounds in a month with no exercise.” Another site might tell you stretching before a workout is harmful. Someone with little background in health and fitness might not know what to believe. The Internet is a valuable tool, but you run the risk of inaccurate information.

One of the latest fitness trends is the sales and use of gaming systems for fitness entertainment. I agree that making fitness fun is a dream come true. The goal of these sports and exercise games is to get people moving. Sports and exercise games might not provide a strenuous workout or generate the same results as running or lifting weights, but they do get the couch potato gamer off the couch. This goes back to figuring out what you want to accomplish in your quest for fitness information.

Although the next trend is not new, it is ranks as one of the fastest growing, and that is the plethora of fitness DVDs on the market. These programs rely on an abundant amount of airtime during nightly television. It’s an amazing thought that you can get such extreme workouts from your living room. Each DVD is lead by an instructor, so you don’t have to wonder what you’re going to do for exercise that day. The idea revolves around a one-time purchase and the convenience of exercising in your own home.

One advantage of this approach is that there are some people who are self-motivated and disciplined enough that a DVD fitness routine works for them. They’ll make themselves do it even when they don’t feel like it. The disadvantage of home fitness DVD programs is that most people aren’t that way. It’s very easy to not stick with a home program, just like home fitness equipment that doubles as a clothes hanger because it’s never used. Without scheduled workout times and someone to help motivate you, this option is difficult for many to stick with over the long run.

Health clubs offer the services of personal trainers. Many trainers have studied exercise, health and nutrition in college as well as hold a certified personal training certificate. Taking the time to find a trainer who fits your needs takes some research as well. Whether you’re looking for someone who specializes in a certain sport or someone who deals with injuries, finding the right trainer is important. Trainers hold you accountable, motivate you and are experts in their field. They’re great for jump starting a fitness program or becoming part of your fitness lifestyle.

While it’s nice having so many options in obtaining fitness information, sometimes sifting through all the information can be difficult. Finding your best source of information is all about what works best for you, not necessarily which one will be the easiest.

Statistics show that people who work out in a group atmosphere are more successful in sticking to their fitness programs than those who go at it alone. Personally, I find that nothing can replace social interaction and relationships — not even all of your friends on Facebook.

Paula and Dale Reece own Crossroads Fitness Centers in Grand Junction with a downtown location in the Alpine Bank Building at 225 N. Fifth St. and an airport location at 2768 Compass Drive. For more information, call 242-8746 or log on to www.crossroadsfitness.com.
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