Sport TrainingAthletic FoundationsPersonal Training

Amy Baumen Personal Training

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See Questions on:
Triathlon Training
Kids Staying Injury Free
Weight Loss
Couple & Family Training

I am training for a triathlon.  I’m getting a little bored with my training and am wondering what exercises or training I could try to add some variety and fun to my workouts.
Triathlons are challenging for a number of reasons, the main one being that you need to train for three sports simultaneously.  Traditionally, that leaves little time for variety.  What many don’t understand is that you can train intensely with  TRX, BOSU, plyometrics, and even your own body weight and still make gains in your training while you add variety.  You never train one energy system exclusively, so by taking a break from continuous aerobic training and switching to some intense anaerobic training you can add variety, new challenges and better times to your triathlon! (top)

My kids play hockey, lacrosse and soccer as well as all the team sports at school.  I have noticed that they (once they are 12 or 13) begin to complain occasionally from knee and back pain.  What exercises should they be doing to help them stay ‘injury’ and pain free?
It is wonderful that your children are so active in sports!  At the ages of 12-13 in both sexes there is a significant amount of change and growth both physically and mentally.  That is why prior to the age of 12 it is so important to establish non-sport specific neuromuscular patterns of movement.  So often when training children for sports the focus is on sport specific training.  For example, hockey players need more ice time.  While that may be true they also need to strengthen muscles that are non-dominant so that the athlete doesn’t develop muscle imbalances.  Sometimes, more is not better.  I like all young athletes to participate in dryland (sport conditioning) training sessions where they develop the necessary balance, strength and movement skills for a wide variety of sporting options.  For more information check out my Athletic Foundations Programs. (top)

I have just been diagnosed with osteopenia.  The doctor recommended doing weight bearing exercise.  Is walking enough?
While you may think this diagnosis is anything but a gift it really is an opportunity to start a training program that will help prevent and/or delay the onset of osteoporosis.  Osteopenia is the less severe  – the pre–osteoporosis –  state of bone density decline. 

As we get older our bones get thinner.  Our bone density reaches a peak in early adulthood (around age 30) and then bone density starts to decrease.  For women this begins earlier and accelerates after menopause.   Of concern is the increase in fractures – both vertebral and hip.  Studies suggest that one third of women over the age of 65 will sustain a vertebral fracture not as a result of injury!  This is why strength training is critical to the prevention of osteoporosis.   It is never too late to start a resistance training program, as long as you have clearance from your doctor.  Studies have shown that strength training and weight bearing exercise increase bone density regardless of age or sex.

With a diagnosis of osteopenia you should definitely keep walking.  But even more important is establishing a strength training program without delay. You should be strength training for at least 30 minutes most days of the week.  Other things to look into are the amounts of calcium and vitamin D in your diet.  Also important to note are that smoking and heavy drinking contribute greatly to bone density decline.  Don’t wait.  We can help you strengthen your way to better bone health! (top)

I am really tired of being ashamed to wear my bathing suit while playing with my kids on the beach.  How do I shed these pounds once and for all?
I am so sorry to tell you that the only way to reach your goals is with commitment and a lot of hard work.  That’s the truth.  If someone else tells you differently – that there is a simple and easy way - it isn’t the truth.  Lasting weight loss is not only a transformation of body composition but also of how you live your life and of what you put into your body.  When you are ready to commit to making lasting changes in your diet and adding exercise time into your day you will begin to see changes in your body composition.  We can help you find exercises that you enjoy and nutrition that is healthy not just for you but also for your family!  The journey is worth the reward at the end – standing strong and confident in your own skin! (top)

My husband and I are both interested in becoming more fit so that we are better role models for our children.  Can we train together?  Can we train as a family?
Brilliant ideas!  Training as a couple makes sense not just economically but it also gives you the opportunity to spend quality time together.  If you and your husband motivate each other and enjoy doing things together then couple training will help both of you reach your fitness goals. 

Training as a family also works well and can be a wonderful time to get fit and have fun together.  All exercises can be adapted and modified to meet individual abilities.  You are right to think that modeling a fit lifestyle is important for your children.  In fact it is the number one indicator of whether or not a child will be active as an adult!  So go ahead – train as a couple and as a family! We offer training programs (Athletic Foundations) that will condition of all of you together leaving you ready to enjoy life to the fullest. (top)