Crossroads Fitness Blog

Crossroads Fitness Blog

Fall into fitness: Make the most of changing season

September 27, 2023

Fall can be a season when exercise routines waiver. It’s no longer summer, but not yet winter. It’s too cold to continue with many of the summer activities you enjoy. You could even become a little blue with the realization summer and your favorite activities are over for a while.

Still, fall brings with it many other opportunities. Here are five tips to keep you active and ready to embrace this beautiful season:

Take it inside and outside. As temperatures drop, head back to the health club. Don’t miss out on a workout just because fall is in the air. Take a group exercise class. Mix it up. Still, fall offers a perfect time to enjoy the beautiful Grand Valley. With so many options from which to choose — like mountain biking and hiking — there’s no reason not to get out and enjoy the scenery and vibrant colors. Go exploring. Hike a new trail. Visit a park. Raking leaves or getting in some yardwork offer great ways to get the heart pumping. Spend time in nature. The fresh air does wonders for your mind as well as your body.

Layer your fall clothing. Learning the fundamentals of layering for fall and winter activities could mean the difference between comfort and misery. It’s important to layer while exercising in chilly weather. You might Quick read more or view full article feel cold at first. But as your body warms, you could feel overdressed. Follow the three-layer rule. The first layer next to your skin should be made of a moisture-wicking fabric, often called DriFit. This fabric keeps moisture away from your skin so you don’t feel wet and cold. The second layer should be a warmth layer and the third layer a protective layer, such as a windbreaker or something water-resistant depending on the weather. Don’t forget your sunglasses.

Don’t be blue. Many of us experience the blues as the weather cools and days shorten. Although it’s tempting when waking up in the dark, don’t hit the snooze button on the alarm. With less sunlight, you might want to increase consumption of Vitamin D. Eat foods rich in this vitamin, such as fish, egg yolks and mushrooms. Remember, too: Exercise releases endorphins that enhance your mood and feelings of happiness.

Watch the treats. It’s estimated the average American gains between 5 pounds and 9 pounds during a holiday season that begins with Halloween and continues through the new year. Halloween is a time when you stockpile bags of candy for the one evening when a few trick-or-treaters come to your door. The day after, leftover candy constitutes a sugar source that promotes unhealthy eating habits. Remember, Halloween is just one day.

Plan for the holidays. Take out a calendar early — like right now. Mark off time for exercise each day. Schedule a little exercise between things on busy days — 10 minutes is better than nothing. Keep your goals in mind throughout the holiday season. The time you allow yourself for exercise, sleep, nutrition and organization will make the busy season more manageable. Eat right and buy healthy snacks. Don’t fall into the trap of believing you’ll start after the new year. This is really saying you’ll find an excuse no matter the time of year. There will always be birthdays, parties and other special events.

Enjoy the change of seasons. Fall is a perfect time to keep fitness routines on track. Instead of using cooler weather as an excuse not to exercise, try using the season as an excuse to exercise. Happy fall.

Read Less
No Comments   |   Add a Comment >>

Don’t suffer by comparison: Focus on being the best you

July 25, 2023

It’s natural to compare ourselves to others. We know we shouldn’t do it. But we do — almost every day in some form.  

Comparison is a double-edged sword. While comparison can serve as a source of motivation, it also can be destructive. As Theodore Roosevelt said: “Comparison is the thief of joy.”

Many forms of comparison can harm self-esteem and lead to unhappiness. They include social comparison, body comparison and competition.

Social comparison refers to a behavior in which we compare certain aspects of ourselves to others. That can include everything from income, homes and job titles to Facebook likes, popularity and relationships. By participating in this type of comparison, we often reach the conclusion we’re “not as good as others.” This assessment is false and can lead to discontentment.  

Body comparisons constitute a sure way to burst a positive body image. Making appearance-based comparisons can influence the way we view our own bodies. It can lead to finding imperfections and disliking our bodies. This is especially true at a time when perfected body types and beauty standards are so apparent in the media. The alternative? Embrace you are uniquely you. 

It’s normal to compare yourself to others when you’re working out. But that also can affect your mental health and enjoyment. For example, you’re participating in a yoga class and everyone seems more flexible. Quick read more or view full article Or you’re walking on a treadmill and the person next to you is running on an incline. Or you’re lifting weights lighter than everyone else is lifting. Comparing flexibility, endurance or strength to others at the gym, or anywhere, doesn’t matter. Their fitness levels are irrelevant. Concentrate instead on you.  

It might help to consider where they started. How much time did it take them to achieve those levels? How much effort did they put into achieving their goals? Is it your goal to match or beat them? It’s better to set your own goals and work toward them at your pace.

.Competition comparison refers to comparisons among athletes or athletic events. Knowing, not comparing, the abilities of your competitors is key. This comparison can be motivating.  

Personal comparison is where you make comparisons about yourself. What you used to to do, perhaps when you were younger. The natural progression of aging reduces strength and stamina. A 70-year-old athlete comparing himself with his performance as a 25 year old can lead to feelings of inadequacy. Push yourself to be your best at your current age. Country singer Toby Keith put it best in his lyrics: “I ain’t as good as I once was, but I’m as good once as I ever was.” 

Learning and practicing some basic skills can help you stop comparing yourself to others. Begin by practicing gratitude for your life. Acknowledge your strengths, not your weaknesses. Remain content with who you are as a person. By turning your focus inward, it becomes about you and not others.  

Start being better at what really matters — being you.

Read Less
No Comments   |   Add a Comment >>

Beat the heat with summer fitness strategies

June 21, 2023

We wait all year, it seems, for summer to arrive. Aah … it’s finally here. 

When most of us think of summer, we think about outdoor fun and a chance to kick back. Beware, though: Changing schedules also could make it more difficult to keep your fitness routine on track. So what can you do to have the most active, fun-filled and productive summer ever?

Warm weather offers opportunities to enjoy outdoor activities. Take the family camping, fishing or hiking. Work in your garden. Part of summer fun and fulfillment is enjoying the outdoors and the people you’re with.    

During the summer months, your normal schedule could be altered. Those changes can affect daily routines, including exercise schedules. Here are a few tips to avoid sabotaging yourself this summer.

Set a summer goal. It’s almost mid-year. Ask yourself how you’ve done so far this year on your New Year’s resolutions. You might have succeeded in some areas, but not others. You could need to re-evaluate your goals to make them more realistic and attainable. Maybe you didn’t set goals. This is a great time to start. Try setting a different goal. Called it summer 2023. What will that goal look like? It might be trying a new sport, learning to swim or visiting a national park.

Stick to a schedule. Make Quick read more or view full article sure your summer days include some structure — like getting up at the same time each day and eating meals at set times. Plan activities for specific times — exercising before breakfast, for example.

Keep busy. Without your appointment book filled, it could be easy to fall into a trap of becoming bored. Boredom goes hand in hand with low energy. Filling your days with things to do will give you a sense of accomplishment.
For many of us, summer still means going to work each day. But with more daylight hours, you don’t have to miss out. Whether you’re taking a vacation or just a weekend, include activities the family already enjoys — along with something new.   

Manage the heat. Although warmer weather is appreciated, hot days can seem unbearable. During these times, move your activities elsewhere. Exercise at the gym or splash in a pool. When you find yourself outdoors during scorching temperatures, remember to stay safe. Wear sunscreen or a long-sleeve shirt to protect your skin from harmful rays. Don’t forget sunglasses and a hat, too. Clothing that wicks moisture away from your skin as you perspire keeps you cooler. One of the most important items to keep you safe is water. Stay hydrated.

Eat healthy. This seems like an easy thing to do with all the fresh vegetables and fruits available. Beware, though, of some of the foods associated with summer events. Backyard barbecues, campfire s’mores and ice cream treats can ruin the best-laid plans of staying fit through the summer. 

Make summer a time to enjoy. Write down your summer 2023 goals and work toward realizing those goals. Make the most of every day, and you’ll make this summer your best ever.

Read Less
No Comments   |   Add a Comment >>

What’s your fitness personality? Find exercises that match

May 24, 2023

Understanding your unique personality helps you enjoy success in your career, your relationships and even your fitness. Physical activity is an expression of personal choices and comfort. Health and fitness goals are easier to achieve when they fall into your natural style.

Identifying activities you enjoy makes it easier to reach fitness goals.Performing activities you don’t enjoy or match your style are difficult, if not impossible, to do long term.   According to the American Council on Exercise, fitness personality types can be sorted into four groups:  planner,
go-getter, social butterfly and adventurer.

The planner: This personality type leans towards what’s familiar. You know if you’re a morning person or evening person. You plan your exercise routine around not only time, but also what you know. Attending the same group exercise class, for example. You’re often more reserved about the way you approach fitness. Handling change doesn’t come easy. You also might enjoy being left alone when you go to the gym. You have a favorite cardio machine, listen to your music and complete the same workout day after day.  

The go-getter: If you fall into this category, you welcome change and are first in line to try something new. You might compete with others. But most of all, you compete with yourself. You’re disciplined and highly motivated. You thrive on personal Quick read more or view full article improvement. Those taking high-intensity group exercise classes or working out with a personal trainer would fall into this group.  

The social butterfly: The social butterfly is just that — social. You want to be around friends, visit and have fun. Exercise is part of your life. Your gym activities would definitely include group exercise and perhaps small group training. You’re an extrovert who radiates positive energy to those around you.  

The adventurer: You’re willing to try anything at least once. You take group exercise classes for everything from kickboxing to Zumba. Signing up for challenge events and obstacle courses wouldn’t be out of the question. If you’re an adventurer, you have confidence in yourself. This fitness personality doesn’t mind change, loves variety and thinks outside the box.  

Another personality trait type that wasn’t mentioned is the true introvert. If you’re an introvert, you might be hesitant to go to a health club.  Stepping out of your comfort zone doesn’t come easily. You could have a difficult time asking for assistance, motivation and instruction. If this fits you, find a true, passionate health club with professionals to help you at your pace to discover exercises that fit your personality. 

Did one of these fitness personalities strike home?  

Limiting the complexities of personalities to only a few categories is a bit constrictive.  Many people actually fall into more than one type. You might feel a little more social or adventuresome some days than others. Age, lifestyle changes, time of year and many other factors all play a role in determining our feelings and fitness personalities. Overall natural tendencies don’t change, however.

Find fitness that fits for you. Taking into consideration your personality makes fitness and health goals more achievable. Doing activities you enjoy and fit into your lifestyle is key to long-term enjoyment and, in turn, your ultimate success.

Read Less
No Comments   |   Add a Comment >>

Get the hang of it: Suspension training offers benefits

April 25, 2023

 Developed by the Navy’s elite special operations forces, suspension training offers body weight exercises that develop balance, flexibility, strength and core stability.  

Suspension training equipment consists of straps securely anchored to a bar.  The straps can be adjusted to accommodate an individual’s height as well as different exercises. 

Suspension training offers advantages over traditional weight training — using barbells and dumbbells, for instance — in that the  training systems use little equipment and are portable. Exercises aren’t performed on the ground, which provides a level of instability. Core muscles must be engaged while using the trainer.

The major benefit to suspension training, though, is its suitability for all levels of fitness. You’re able to adjust the difficulty of each exercise merely by changing the position of your body. If you’re doing a bicep curls, for example, a more upright position allows for an easier workout. If you move your feet away so your body is in a more horizontal position, more exertion will be required to pull you up into a bicep curl.

A variety of exercises can be performed on a suspension trainer. By learning just a few of the hundreds of different positions, you can enjoy a total body workout.

That’s why all four branches of the military as well as some of the top athletes all use suspension trainers in their fitness programs. Quick read more or view full article Drew Brees, the former New Orleans Saints quarterback, endorsed TRX suspension trainers and incorporated it into his workout program.

According to personal trainers, yet another benefit of suspension training is that it can be used to take pressure off joints when performing such exercises as squats and lunges. By having straps to hold on to, clients can get into a deep squat or lunge and then more easily come up.

Suspension trainers are portable and easy to install on your own. But having a personal trainer show you the exercises using proper form and assist you in getting into position helps you obtain the maximum benefit from exercises while reducing the risk of injury. Learning what positions and exercises work what muscles will help you reach your strength training goals.

While there are many ways to get fit, suspension training offers a powerful and successful tool. Learning to leverage your body weight with gravity creates a unique fitness experience. 

Read Less
No Comments   |   Add a Comment >>
  • 2768 Compass Drive
  • Grand Junction, CO 81506
  • 970-242-8746
  • Fax: 970-241-4030
  • 225 N. 5th Street, Suite 18
  • Alpine Bank Building
  • 970-241-7800
  • Fax: 970-241-3532
Crossroads Fitness ©
North: 970-242-8746
Downtown: 970-241-7800