Fitness Focus
Contact UsRegister
Fitness Focus Saskatoon - Latest News
Gym & CardioGroup FitnessPersonal TrainingServicesPricesAbout Us

Quick Links

Beyond The Weight Room — Melissa Leier At Nationals

posted by Fitness Focus    |   September 17, 2012 00:08

Beyond The Weight Room — Melissa Leier At Nationals

After winning Saskatchewan Figure Provincials (see excerpts from my journal in the May issue of Saskatoon Well Being Magazine), I went right into contest preparation for Canadian Nationals four months later. As I start this journal, it’s two days to show time. During the last few days leading up to the competition, I really have to make the best use of my time, at home, in the gym and in my leisure time. Oh wait! There isn’t any leisure time at this point!

 

This time around I have the opportunity to compete at the same show as my boyfriend, Chris! We’ve each done our share of competitions in the past and supported each other through a few, but this was the first one we both were able to do together. Not only am I lucky to have him along with me to help me out with my suit, competition colour, motivation and support, but I also am extremely excited for him to compete in the Men’s Physique category and I can’t wait to see how he does. There’s no doubt in my mind that he’s going to rock it on stage!

Read more about Melissa at Well Being Magazine

Yoga in Saskatoon, Have You Tried Fitness Focus

posted by Fitness Focus    |   September 9, 2012 23:17
Have you tried Yoga at Fitness Focus?  We encourage all experienced or beginners to come check out our Yoga classes.  No need to book a spot, our studio is large enouge to accommodate classes up to 25 people at a time. Check our Group Fitness Schedule for class times.
 
You know that yoga is good for you, but here are some benefits and information about Yoga you may not know! 

Physical Benefits

Flexibility: Stretching your body in new and different ways will help your joints and muscles to become more flexible, giving you better range of motion. Over time, you will gain flexibility in your legs, back, shoulders, and midsection which can all prevent injury and aid in your resistance training.

Strength: Many poses in yoga require supporting the weight of your own body in new and different ways, including balancing on one leg or supporting yourself with your arms. The slow movements through the poses also develope strength.  You can also expect to see improved muscle tone, better shape and long lean muscles.

Pain Prevention: Increasing flexibility and strength will help prevent certain types of body pain. For example, many people who suffer from back pain can usually trace it back to spending much of their time sitting or high impact activity all day. That can cause spinal compression, which you can begin to address with yoga. Yoga will also improve your alignment, both in and out of class, which helps prevent many other types of pain.

Better Breathing: Most of us breathe very shallowly into the lungs and don't give much thought to how we breathe. Yoga breathing exercises, called Pranayama, focus the attention on the breath and teach us how to better use our lungs, which benefits the entire body. Certain types of breath can also help clear the nasal passages and even calm the central nervous system, which has both physical and mental benefits.

Mental Benefits

Mental Calmness: Yoga asana practice is intensely physical. Concentrating so intently on what your body is doing has the effect of bringing a calmness to the mind. Yoga also introduces you to meditation techniques, such as watching how you breathe and disengagement from your thoughts, which help calm the mind.

 

Stress Reduction

: Physical activity is a great method for eliminating stress; this is particularly true in yoga.  Yoga provides a much-needed break from the stressors in your life, as well as helping put things into perspective.  The emphasis yoga places on being in the moment can also help relieve stress, as you learn not to dwell on past events or anticipate the future. You will leave a yoga class feeling less stressed than when you started.

 

Body Awareness: Doing yoga will give you an increased awareness of your own body. You are often called upon to make small, subtle movements to improve your alignment. Over time, this will increase your level of comfort in your own body. This can lead to improved posture and greater self-confidence.

 

Saskatoon Well Being: Our Favorite Article for September

posted by Fitness Focus    |   September 7, 2012 17:37

Here is our favorite article chosen from the September 2012 issue of Saskatoon Wellbeing Magazine.  This month's article is about sleep.  Most of us take this luxury for granted; we don't realize how important a good night sleep really is to what we do the following day.  It can affect your work, relationships with people and even be the deciding factor of whether to make it to the gym or not.  This article touches base on a side of sleep deprivation we might not be acknowledging.

Sleeping Separately: Why More Couples Are Going To Sleep In Different Beds

by Sarah Stefanson

She needs complete silence to get to sleep. He likes the white noise of a fan in the background. The fan also keeps him cool, but she likes to be nice and warm. She needs darkness and he can fall asleep in a fully lit room. He tends to go to sleep early and wake up early, while she’s just the opposite. He twitches in his sleep. Oh, and he snores.

They have tried different tactics to solve their sleep differences. She sings the praises of her sleep mask. They tried having different blankets for each of them. Schedule adjustments. Earplugs. No matter what they attempted, the glaring truth was staring them in the face: they were not meant to sleep in the same room.

Many couples are experiencing similar dilemmas and most are hesitant to resort to separate bedrooms, but it is a growing trend for partners to split up at bedtime. From 2001 to 2005, the National Sleep Foundation found that the numbers of American married couples that sleep in separate beds rose from 12 per cent to 23 per cent. The Sleep Council of England reports that 1 in 4 Brits habitually spend their nights in spare rooms or on sofas. Want more proof? The National Association of Home Builders says there have been more and more requests for homes built with two master bedrooms. In fact, they estimate that by the year 2015, 60 per cent of all custom-built homes will have his and hers bedrooms.

Proponents of separate bedrooms have several good arguments to back them up and even some scientific evidence.

Sleep specialist Dr. Neil Stanley revealed at the British Science Festival in 2009 that couples that sleep in the same bed may experience 50 per cent more sleep disturbances than those who sleep separately

Vince Wawryk - 2012 IFBB Muscle Heat Pro

posted by Fitness Focus    |   August 24, 2012 17:34

A true inspirations to everyone around the gym!  We want to say Good Luck to Vince Wawryk, IFBB Pro and Head Trainer at Fitness Focus.  Vince has headed off to Greensboro, North Carolina this weekend at the IFBB Muscle Heat Pro. Vince has been competing at Professional level bodybuilding since 2008 and has made us proud and impressed us every year he takes the stage.

For more udates on Vince's progress and this weekend's contest contest result keep in touch with Team Wawryk at http://www.facebook.com/teamwawryk and http://www.teamwawryk.com/cgi-bin/YaBB.pl?num=1283822844.

Fitness Focus is Saskatoon's No Contract Gym

Tags: , , ,

Cleanse And Detox for The Purpose of Weight Loss

posted by Fitness Focus    |   August 24, 2012 00:18

Questions from around the gym: Do Cleanses and Detoxes Work?

This is a hot topic at all gyms; as discussed in the previous cleanse and detox blog entry; cleansing which is interchangeable with fasting, is certainly not a smart choice in terms of promoting good health. Fasting is also far from a effective method for weight loss, yet it still one of the oldest methods for fast weight loss. It doesn't involve a whole lot of understanding or any drastic changes in your lifestyle.  it just requires starving yourself, then it won't be long until you start to see the numbers on the scale starting to drop.  For people desperate for answers, it doesn't help being bombarded by all the New Age products on the market that claim to help them get the most out of their weight loss fast.  Fasting is an easy and non-invasive method of losing weight and is hyped up by some self-appointed experts as the best method to deal with weight loss and obesity, when used in combination with their products and services.  When you do a detox, you do lose some weight temporarily, but most of the immediate weight loss that occurs is just a result of the lack of fluid retention that naturally happens when a person does not eat. So, the weight that is lost is short lived is short-lived at best, and it inevitably be regained after a couple days of returning to your normal eating habits.  Previous in the blog you read about detoxes and cleanses and their unrealistic role of detoxifying your body  The main reason people incorporate a detox into their lifestyle is for the purpose of weight loss,

Fasting & Weight Loss:  Understanding the Mechanisms Of Short Term Fasts
This section will explain a bit more of what fasting really does to our bodies and what impacts it has on leading a healthy lifestyle.  One important aspect of understanding what happens during a cleanse is to have a clear picture of exactly what is happening in your body when you decide to stop or restrict your nutritional intake. Sugars that are broken down and stored in your body the form of glucose is the main source of fuel for your body and is necessary not only for our muscles to work but also for our brain to be efficient.  When your food intake is limited, the low blood sugar levels in your body trigger an increase in the two hormones glucagon (which is a for of glucose - sugar found in your liver and muscles) and epinephrine. One function of these hormones is the stimulation of the conversion of glycogen into a useable fuel by means of a process called glycogenolysis. The human liver and muscles have enough glycogen to last for two to three days; this is one reason that brief periods of fasting, say for a medical procedure, are usually harmless for healthy individuals.

Fasting and Weight Loss:  The Effects of Long Term Fasting

When you decide to limit or completely remove most foods from your diet as most cleanses require, there will be a brief period when your body will start to use your stored body fat as a fuel source. During this period, the change in body weight will not be noticeable by any means.  Too long of a period without proper nutrient intake, such as protein, carbohydrates and to a lesser extent fats, your body will go into a catabolic phase which basically means you will actually start to loose muscle mass.  So, losing muscle mass might take the numbers on the scale in the direction you want, but that doesn't mean that it was kind of weight you wanted to lose. Muscle is what gives a person the hard or in shape look once they achieve desired body fat levels. A long period without food has another negative and

undesired effect on the body.  When your body is deprived of calories for fuel it goes into a survival mode, so when the calories are reintroduce when you eat again your body will use what is immediately needed and store the rest as,you guess it, bodyfat.  So a cleanse that last for 30 days, 10 days, or even 3 days will ultimately lead you back to where you were a the beginning.

So you see, a cleanse as a method of losing unwanted body fat is really not the answer.  If anything it will make you more tired and less capable of living your daily life, including work and exercise.  As stated in the previous article, depriving yourself of nutrients is not doing your body any favors.  There is no substitute for proper, healthy eating.

 

Avoiding Weight Gain After Taking It Off

posted by Fitness Focus    |   August 14, 2012 17:31

A Solution to Weight Regain Through Increasing Muscle Mass & High Intensity Training

There is one absolute, most important factor in any sustainable weight loss program.  It goes beyond simply burring off calories through cardiovascular exercise and lowering calorie intake, but rather focusing instead on increasing overall muscle mass. Increasing muscle mass means a higher resting metabolic rate, which allows for calorie intake to stay higher and within more practical limits for the average person.  Many studies confirm the role of resistance training; it preserves muscle mass during diet controlled weight loss and a simultaneous increase in overall fat loss as a result.  If a person's resting metabolic rate account for over 70% of their daily energy expenditure and is determined by that person's fat free muscle mass, it only makes sense that attempts to lose weight through practices that can decrease muscle mass is inevitably counterproductive.

On the other hand, increases in fat free muscle mass from weight training lead to higher resting metabolic rates. Which, when combined with the added calories burned during resistance training and from excess post exercise oxygen consumption, can gradually and permanently decrease body fat levels when used in conjunction with muscle promoting high protein diets that are not overly hypocaloric.

Aerobic Exercise Vs Resistance Exercise For Long Term Weight Loss

aerobic exercise does not prevent weight regain

Aerobic exercise can decrease body weight, althouh it comes at the expense of maintaining muscle mass and thus does not prevent the you from regaining the weight again.

People have always been skeptical  rowards the use of exercise for muscle building as a main tool for weight loss.  Aerobic exercise is typically what we associate with shedding body fat, even though many studies find high intensity weight training to be more efficient than the conventional aerobic exercise for reducing fat mass. Aerobic exercise can indeed reduce fat mass, but has very little effect if any on the preservation of fat free mass. Not only does this increase the possibility of weight regain, but from a cosmetic point of view, diet induced weight loss using such forms of exercise would result in a smaller, but still flabby version of what you started out with if resistance exercise is not included in your regime. Following aerobic exercise, there is a miniscule increase in calorie expenditure for up to 48 hours after the exercise, but only if this exercise is done with a vertain degree of intensity and at a long duration. This seems like a relatively large window, however there is not an increase in resting metabolic rates.  On the other hand, increases in a person's muscle mass permanently increase thier resting metabolic rates, and the state of the after burn effect of high intensity training from excess post exercise oxygen consumption is also greater than that of aerobic exercise. 

The other factor that favors high intensity resistance training for long term weight loss without weight regain is the use of a high protein diet designed to increase muscle mass. Studies have shown that a high protein intake of 18% or more of total energy intakes limits weight regain in those who have lost weight.[28] Diet induced thermogenesis accounts for about 10% of energy expenditure and high protein foods not only have a high thermogenic and muscle sparing effect, but also promote higher satiety levels after consumption which can limit excessive calorie intake.

A reduction in body fat through high intensity resistance training doesn't yield the quick drops on the bathroom scale that would be seen from a higher volume of aerobic exercise with a low calorie diet, which in itself is a good thing as you don’t lose muscle mass in the process. However it does provide a long term solution for those needing to lose weight with the added benefits of increased strength and improved self esteem thanks to increased lean muscle mass. Muscle mass that is key to the development of the lean, toned and tight body that is without question the Holy Grail of our time. A look that is unattainable from high levels of aerobics and or low calorie intakes, as such activities have little effect on the increased development of skeletal muscle and from what we know can predispose you to regaining the weight you worked so hard to lose. 

Meet the Personal Trainers: Vince Wawryk

posted by Fitness Focus    |   August 12, 2012 19:18

Vince

Vince is the head trainer at Fitness Focus.  He created Team Wawryk Training in hopes of sharing first hand experience with weight gain, weight loss and healthy lifestyle with clients to achieve success in life and in competition. Vince entered his first bodybuilding contest in 1991. Over the past 20 years, Vince has dedicated his life to the sport. Bodybuilding is important in fitness as it instills discipline and dedication, it also teaches healthy and proper weight management methods; very important pricipals to lead a healthy lifestyle. Vince is an expert on these methods like no one else.

Vince has dedicated himself to research, studying nutrition and working hard everyday.  Vince is always trying new ideas and tweaking his diet and different training methods to be the best that he can be and pass on these experiences to his clients. His motto has always been..."compete against yourself" he tells competition clients "don't worry about somebody else on stage, and work towards doing better than you ever have before. If you can do that, you will learn, grow and ultimately achieve your goal." That's what Vince did; and that is how he became the 2007 Canadian National Champion of Body Building.

If you would like to contact Vince you can email to vince@teamwawryk.com or go to www.teamwawryk.com

Beyond The Weight Room: What It Takes

posted by Fitness Focus    |   August 7, 2012 19:44

The August issue of Well Being Magazine is now available at the gym and many other locations around the city.  Here, for you is our favorite article from the August issue, Beyond the Weight Room is another section from Melissa Leier.

Beyond The Weight Room: What It Takes

Curiosity

You start off by wondering if you can do it. Perfect. You’re in the right mindset. Now give it your best shot and surprise yourself at what you can achieve!

A Powerful Coach

To get to your goals, to challenge yourself and stretch beyond what you thought you were capable of, researching and finding a coach who is a good fit for you is a great way to start. Without coaching we can do well, but often can’t get pushed above and beyond what we think we can achieve. Even as a personal trainer and exercise physiologist myself, I need coaching to drive me forward.

Accountability

You must be accountable to both yourself and your coach. Make a commitment to yourself to work your hardest. By slacking off in the gym or fuelling your body with poor nutrition you’re ultimately only cheating yourself. You’ve likely invested a lot of time and money into training, so keep in mind that you want to get the most out of it. I thrive off of positive reinforcement and recognition of hard work and I never like to be in a position to disappoint. This is why having a coach works wonders for me.

Being An Early Riser

Get used to it, there will be morning cardio. No matter how tired or sore you are, you have to get yourself out of bed and go as hard as you can. I find that if I pack my meals and my workout bags and lay out all my clothes the night before it is a lot easier to just get up and go. It is surprising what just washing your face in cold water or having a quick, cool shower can do to wake you right up with some energy.

Dedication To Diet

You must make a commitment to stick to the plan regardless of what is going on in your life. This means packing your own meals along with you to social events, family get-togethers, work functions, etc. that are going to last more than three hours. You may feel like a weirdo with your container of chicken and broccoli at these things, but get used to it.

Doing Your Homework

Since the sport is judged subjectively and can change from year to year, you have to do your homework and find out what the judges are after. You are judged on the full package that you present, so make sure you cover all your bases. Your physique is just one piece of the puzzle. Everybody’s body type is unique, so you may need to find out which division is right for you. Overall presentation can also include stage presence: posing, confidence, elegance, poise. Your movements and transitions in posing need to flow. Watch videos online of the pros and then take pictures and videotape yourself often.

Internal Drive

Go beyond your comfort zone and push past the point you thought you could. Since I most often train on my own, I create my own motivation by giving myself challenges in my workouts. For example, when I’m doing cardio daily, I’ll set a goal to have covered x number of miles in a certain time. The next day I’ll have to make sure I do no less than that to keep building on the intensity each day. Another trick I use is to challenge myself to my own “wet t-shirt contest,” where I don’t let my workout end without having sweated up a storm from working hard with high intensity. If the t-shirt’s still dry at the end of the workout, I’m not done yet!

Cuts, Scrapes, Bruises & Calluses

Sure, we try to look our best on stage, but leading up to that point it’s not all pretty. Year-round I have hands that are callused from gripping barbells and dumbbells. I wear gel nails, but often I have corners chipped off after a week or two of wear and tear. I’ve had the bottom of my shins scraped off from rubbing on the leg extension padding (or lack of padding!) and usually I have big bruises on my hips or thighs from banging them on random gym machines.

Read this entire artice and many more great ones like it at http://www.saskatoonwellbeing.com/

Meet the Personal Trainers: Chris Pylypchuk

posted by Fitness Focus    |   August 2, 2012 13:44

Meet the Personal Trainers: Chris Pylypchuk

 

Chris has always had a passion for Fitness and Sport and has participated avidly in both since high school. Along with many other competitive childhood sports, Chris spent time wrestling and playing football.  In 2003 he entered in his first bodybuilding competition in the Saskatchewan Amateur Bodybuilding Association.  He feels fortunate to be able to share this passion with clients and friends at Fitness Focus and is proud but stays humble in contributing to their success. Chris believes firmly that it is important to practice what you preach; as such he is not just a Personal Trainer but also a competitive fitness athlete. Chris’ goal as your trainer is to be %100 honest with you about where you are, about your progress, where you want to be, and in your Client/Trainer-relationship. He continues to constantly educate himself to improve his ability to provide you with the latest and most effective techniques to help you achieve your goals, ultimately making him a better trainer. Chris’ mission is not only to help you condition your body but also your mind, to make his teaching something you can live with, enjoy and incorporate into your life.

 Qualifications:

  • Can-Fit-Pro Certified Personal Trainer Specialist
  • WBFF Pro Fitness Model
  • B.Sc Biochemistry University of Saskatchewan

Chris specializes in One on One Personal Training, Customized Fitness and Diet Plans, Weight Management and Contest Preparation.

If you would like to contact Chris you can email to chris@teamwawryk.com or go to www.teamwawryk.com

Meet The Personal Trainers: Jamie Polson

posted by Fitness Focus    |   August 1, 2012 12:19

Meet the Personal Trainers: Jamie Polson.

Jamie's interest in health and fitness began as a young teenager.  He has devoted many hours and energy to improving his overall health, wellness and physique; and takes pride in sharing his knowledge with his friends and clients to help them achieve their goals and enjoy life. Jamie is very serious about train; not only his own training, but those who he trains as well.  He has a respect for hard work and believe if a person is going to embark on a path towards a goal it should be done right, without cutting corners and honestly.  Over the course of 25 years, he has amassed the experience along with certifications in fitness and nutrition.  From beginner to a well seasoned weight lifter, Jamie has the tools to help you exceed your weight management goals.

Jamie specializes in Individual Dietary Plans, Customized Fitness and Workout Programs, Weight Management and Lean Muscle Tissue Growth.  His qualifications include: Fitness and Nutrition Diploma and over 25 years in health and fitness 

You can contact Jamie directly by email at jamie@teamwawryk.com

Join Fitness Focus Online
Fitness Focus Juice Bar