Tag: worcester fitness

Personal Trainer Janine McCarthy

Worcester Fitness Nation welcomes Personal Trainer Janine McCarthy!

Janine returns to central Massachusetts after earning her Bachelor’s degree in Health Sciences from Lock Haven University in Pennsylvania and her Master’s Degree in Adapted Physical Activity from Slippery Rock University in Pennsylvania.

Janine is a Certified Disability Sport Specialist Level 1 with BlazeSports and a Certified Personal Trainer through NASM. She specializes in working with people who have either short term or long term disabilities.

Janine also specializes in rehabilitative exercises and athletic training geared towards clients looking to prevent future injuries and also improve their athletic performance. If you are interested in training with Janine or talking to her about your goals..send us a message!



Yoga in an active, safe, and inclusive environment that incorporates mindful movements and breathing techniques with stories and games. In this class every child will feel supported and encouraged.  It will help kids grow confidence, promote healthy bodies, coordination/balance, and improve concentration. In addition this will help preteens learn how to cope with the pressures of school, and emotional “ups and downs.”


INSTRUCTOR - DENLEIGH • Classes start April 11, 2017

Tuesday’s • 9:30am ages 2-5 • Wednesday’s 5pm ages 6-12
Free to members.  $10 for non members.

Sign Up

Practicing Yoga

By Robyn dos Santos, Yoga Instructor, Licensed Therapist and Counselor
Worcester Fitness 

As the winter months come to a close, many of us begin to plan a well-deserved vacation. Good vacations often include a chance to renew ourselves, to simply exist in a relaxing environment without the demands of everyday life and the expectations of others. We look forward to new experiences of our choice, and opportunities for play. We never want vacations to end.

Beginner's Mind

In many ways, the practice of yoga can be like a vacation from the stressors of life, the demands put upon our bodies and minds which can become excessive and cumulative. When we choose to enter a yoga practice with the simple intention of being curious and open to new experiences, free from expectations (called “a beginner’s mind’), each class has the potential to put us in touch with ourselves at a deeper level, increasing self-awareness of the sources and sensations of our stress.


Practicing the yoga postures, (asanas) encourage us to attend to the multiple sensations; the slow, rhythmic movements of the body, as it moves in and out of the postures.  This asks us to be attentive to the present moment, the “here and now”.  It allows the opportunity to let go of repetitive thought patterns and worries.

The breathing component of yoga practice focuses on energizing and relaxing with the cycles of inhale/exhale.  This simple, yet profound action assists in releasing tension and improving vitality.


Finally, complete relaxation of body and mind allows for integration of the yoga practice on a more holistic, complete level.  For this reason, relaxation pose is often done as the final component of a yoga routine.

Yoga has often been described as a natural prescription for health and stress management.  It has numerous benefits, one of which is renewal at the levels of mind, body, and spirit.

Robyn dos Santos is a professional, licensed therapist and counselor.  She is a yoga instructor and therapist.

Weight Loss 75% Diet, 25% Exercise

By Emily Creamer-Collins, Master Trainer
Worcester Fitness 

If fat loss is your goal, both nutrition and exercise are important. Generally speaking, weight loss is 75% diet and 25% exercise. An analysis of more than 700 weight loss studies found that people see the biggest short-term results when they eat smart.

Calories in/out

On average, people who dieted without exercising for 15 weeks lost 23 pounds; the exercisers who didn’t diet lost only six pounds over about 21 weeks. It’s much easier to cut calories than to burn them off.* For example, if you eat a fast food steak quesadilla, which can pack 500-plus calories, you need to run more than four miles to ‘undo’ it!

So what should you eat? It’s true that low-carb diets tend to be the most popular because they offer the fastest results, but they can be difficult to sustain. I recommend striving for a more balanced plan that focuses on real food - fruits, vegetable, lean proteins and whole grains.

*Huffington Post 2014

Less Meat, More Plants

One of my favorite quotes is from Michael Pollan, author of Food Rules, “Eat food, not too much, mostly plants.”  There’s no room for processed food in that rule!

But do yourself a favor and try focusing more on the FOOD you’re eating and less on the CALORIES you’re taking in.  Most people think controlling portions means counting calories, but there’s a better way.  Leading nutritionists at Precision Nutrition developed this cool Hand Measure System to use instead of getting bogged down by the confusing art of calorie counting. 

Palm of your hand

And your hand is all you need!

Your hand is proportionate to your body, its size never changes, and it’s always with you, making it the perfect tool for measuring food and nutrients – minimal counting required. 

Here’s the breakdown:

A serving of protein = 1 palm

A serving of vegetables = 1 fist

A serving of carbs = 1 cupped hand

A serving of fats = 1 thumb

Here’s how to use this method to build a plate of food:


Step 1 = PROTEIN (meat, fish, eggs, cottage cheese, Greek yogurt)

Men: two palm-sized portions [~ 40-60 g protein]
Women: one palm-sized portion [~ 20-30 g protein]

Step 2 = VEGETABLES (broccoli, spinach, salad, carrots, etc.)

Men: two fist-sized portions
Women: one fist-sized portion

Step 3 = CARBOHYDRATES (grains, starches, beans, and fruits)

Men: two cupped hand-sized portions [~ 40-60 g carbs]
Women: one cupped hand-sized portion [~ 20-30 g carbs]

Step 4 = FATS (oils, butters, nut butters, nuts, and seeds)

Men: two thumb-sized portions [~ 15-25 g fat]
Women: one thumb-sized portion [~ 20-30 g fat]


Men eating 3-4 meals as outlined would get around 2,300 – 3,000 calories each day.

Women eating 3-4 meals as outlined would get around 1,200 – 1,500 calories each day.

This system is easier than counting calories and nearly as accurate.  Just like with counting, though, pay attention to results and adjust as needed.

Try it out and let me know what you think!

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!

How Focusing on Self-Love Can Help You Reach Your Health and Wellness Goals

By Dana Harrison, MS
Worcester Fitness
It’s the first week of January and health and wellness goals are in full throttle. While most people are interested in resolutions related to food and fitness, let’s shed light on what’s really important in succeeding with these goals—love. Without love, there’s not much; no health, wellness, drive, or positivity.
I truly believe that love trumps all; hate, anger, depression; love wins.

Don't Wait

Let's not wait for a horrific or disturbing event to serve as a reminder to spread that love. Love more; hate less. Get ahead of it.
It doesn't have to be big [but it can be]. And don't just do it for others and the fact that you have faith in humanity. Do it for yourself. Love yourself. Self-love and love for others is what keeps us going. So why not take advantage of that and apply it to your New Year’s resolutions.

Focus on Love

As you make some positive changes to your lifestyles try taking the time to reflect on how you treat yourself and others. To focus on love’s importance in the health and wellness puzzle, try the following challenges:
1) Spread some love and kindness, even small, this week to those you know and others you don't. Your actions and words are contagious; spread love and it keeps spreading.
2) Find one thing about yourself that you want to love but aren't there yet-- this one might be tough to come to terms with, but in order to love and grow, tap into that vulnerability.
How do you work on improving this?


Once you’ve reflected, move forward and apply this idea of love to your health and wellness goals by falling in love with the process of changing for the better. It all starts with loving yourself and others. Loving your body allows for appreciation of what it can do now and what it will be able to do in the future. Loving your mind raises the bar higher. Applying this can only set you up for success when aiming towards creating health and wellness goals that are sustainable and fit into your lifestyle.
Applying this can only set you up for success when aiming towards creating health and wellness goals that are sustainable and fit into your lifestyle.

Take a Minute to Prepare for your Workout

By Emily Creamer Collins
Master Trainer
Worcester Fitness
Remember to “get set” before you “GO!”
A few weeks ago I did a 5K race. At the start line, I had my usual pre-race jitters and was doing my usual pre-race routine to calm those jitters: jumping up and down, rotating my feet, taking the obligatory selfie. As the start time approached, the announcer on the loudspeaker called out “Ready…?” Everyone around me yelled and cheered. Then he called out “GO!” And everyone around me took off.
I was still standing standing there, wondering what happened to “Set?”


The phrase “Ready, set, go” is synonymous with “On you mark, get set, go!” It’s a phrase that describes a process.
On your mark, get set, go! is used to begin a competition. It was originally used in England in the 1800s to begin running races.
The word mark referred to the place on the running course where the runner would start, whether a line or a set of starting blocks. Get set is a sort of warning that the signal to start running is about to occur, though today when a runner “gets set” he usually raises his hind quarters and tenses his legs in preparation to run.
The word go, of course, means that it is time to start running.
See how getting set is the equivalent of getting prepared?

Be Prepared

Over the past year or so, I’ve observed that very few people take time to get set in their workouts. They get ready and then they go without getting prepared. Why is that?
To explore this question, let’s look at similar phrases/processes. For example, there’s “Lights, camera, action” and there’s “Ready, aim, fire.” I want to focus on the importance of the middle step. A filmmaker would never complete a movie if she skipped camera. Similarly, a marksman would never hit the target if he skipped aim. So why, as athletes, do we expect to be successful in reaching our goals if we skip getting set?
So what do I mean by getting set for a workout? First, warm-up. Second, focus on your form.

Serious Warm-Up!

Before your workout, take your warm-up seriously! It will prepare you for the best training session possible and it will help to keep your body healthier. A good warm-up works on range-of-motion, activation of muscles, and movement preparation. It can be done in only 10-minutes and should include exercises such as:
Foam rolling
Hip-flexor stretches
Floor bridges
Child’s pose with rotation
Wall slides
Lunges: forward, back, side-to-side
During your workout, focus on your form! It will take just a second and will help get the most benefit from your exercise while reducing the risk of injury.
Here are some examples of check-points that people tend to skip:
Are your hands in the correct position for a push-up?
Are your elbows and hips in the correct position for a plank?
Are your shoulder blades in the correct position for a kettlebell swing?
Are your knees tracking correctly in your lunges?
Are your heels down in your squats?
Are you breathing?
Are you focusing on your movement or are you thinking about something else?

As we head into the New Year, let’s all make an effort to “get set” before we “GO!”

Kid's Korner at Worcester Fitness

Did you know that Kid's Korner, Worcester Fitness' popular children's babysitting service, is FREE to members?

Free is as good as it gets price wise, but don't let the word fool you. Your children will have an amazing time with our professional Kid's Korner team in a safe and secure environment right next to our cardio center.

Not a member---Come in for a tour and see our club AND Kid's Korner for yourself! https://www.worcesterfitness.com/kids-korner/


Worcester Fitness 5K for Planting the Seed Foundation

Worcester Fitness Wellness Team at F&D Plastics

The Worcester Fitness Wellness Team was on the road yesterday visiting F & D Plastics in Leominster. This great local company hired Worcester Fitness to present employees with health and fitness information as well as the opportunity to have their cholesterol and blood glucose levels tested. Worcester Fitness Nurse Educator Sandy Knight, Personal Trainer Picky Lanigan and Director of Fitness Andy Sharry had a great time working with the F&D Team. Worcester Fitness can bring wellness to YOUR company too!

Contact andy@worcesterfitness.com to schedule a visit!

#worcesterfitness #worcesterma #fitnessatwork

 worcester fitness

worcester fitness


Worcester Fitness at Worcester Public Schools

Worcester Fitness Out and About

Recently, Worcester Fitness was invited to present to the Worcester Public Schools Physical Education and Health Education Department's professional development day.

Kat Butterfield, Picky Lanigan and Andy Sharry introduced these local educators to Worcester Fitness and our diverse programs.

The WF Team then took the educators through a 45-minute Cardio Sport class in the Worcester Tech High School gym. There were 40 physical education and health education teachers participating. It was a huge success and a fun time was had by all!

Each educator came away with something new to bring back to the children that they teach.

Director of Fitness Andy Sharry spoke for 30 minutes about the importance of Community Partnerships for health and wellness related endeavors in the Worcester area and how deeply service is ingrained in the Worcester Fitness culture.


 Worcester Fitness at Worcester Tech


High Definition RESULTS

What is Worcester Fitness High Definition Training?

Check out these class descriptions and make High Definition at Worcester Fitness, YOUR training program!

HD Power: Sweat, Run, Jump, Push, Press, Row and Curl your way to a highly invigorating workout to improve your strength, speed, agility, power, and flexibility.   A fun mix of HIIT, Circuit Training, Strength and Resistance Training combined with intense cardio. You'll work all muscle groups to become a strong athlete. This class is a high-energy, total-body workout that focuses on every muscle group at an intensity that will simultaneously improve your cardiovascular strength and endurance. Performed to motivating music and inspired by any and every sport, incorporates a variety of exercises and equipment to always keep you on your toes and eager to see what is next. You're an athlete, so train like one!

HD Performance: A raucous mashup of cardio, strength, core, speed, agility, & power. You'll never know what to expect in this high speed, fun-filled sports performance training class. Open to everyone! Bring a smile, water, towel and willingness to safely push yourself beyond your limits!
HD LunchExpress: This HD Class will incorporate high intensity movements, explosive power and super strength. The workout will include strength training, plyometrics, speed and agility work. You're an athlete, so let's train like one! You'll sweat and have a great time and be back to work before the boss knows you’re gone!

HD TRXtreme: Super Fun & Challenging Head-to-Toe TRX suspension program that will develop strength, balance, flexibility, and core stability.  You'll use body-weight suspension exercises with an intense combination of muscle conditioning to include traditional bootcamp and plyometric exercises. Total body workout in a small group setting will promote significant results!

HD 8-weeks to Spartan Fenway: Join Spartan SGX Certified Trainer Tracy Riley for an 8 week program designed to prepare you for Spartan Fenway in November.  This class is great for those interested in competing in adventure races or looking for a physical or mental challenge. You don't have to compete in the races to be part of this exciting and challenging Spartan Class!  You don't have to be at all 8 classes to be part of the program.
(runs until 11/5)
(future 8 week sessions will follow)

hd-fenway hdpower-andy

hdtperformance hdtrextreme


Breathe! by Emily Collins

We all do this every day, all day but sometimes we need a reminder of the many benefits of deep b-r-e-a-t-h-i-n-g. It's like a warm-up for the respiratory system!
Breathing Drills include:
  • Supine (face-up) on the floor, with legs bent or straight
  • Supine, with hips and knees bent at 90-degrees and feet flat against the wall. (see video below)
  • Prone (face-down), a drill called "crocodile breathing"
  • In the child's pose from yoga: you're face-down, with your legs tucked
    beneath you and your chest on your thighs, arms extended, chin tucked
In Practice
"When I first asked my "Down 2 Sizes" groups to do one of these drills, they laughed at me. But after just one session, they loved how they felt! They even began showing up to workouts early so that they could do this drill.  They loved it!" Emily