VIDA Blog
Apr 29 2016

Q&A with TRX Instructor Alex Miller

Alex Miller

Alex Miller

We spent some time this month getting to know VIDA Trainer and TRX Instructor at Verizon, Alex Miller! Alex explains the basics of TRX training, why it works so well in a small group format, and why it’s a smart move for clients to branch out and add a new method of training into their routine!

Q: We already know that you are an amazing Personal Trainer! Tell us why you decided to branch out and start teaching TRX?

A: I decided to branch out into teaching TRX because I felt that I needed a vehicle for meeting members/clients that I wouldn’t normally have the opportunity interact with while I am training one-on-one. I’ve heard in the past that trainers can be intimidating, and TRX is the perfect way to show that I am knowledgeable but also fun and sometimes silly. I get to pick my own music too, which is always a plus! (I’ll take requests if you’ve got them!)

 

Q: We have all seen those yellow straps hanging around, but can you explain why TRX is an effective method of resistance training and what can members expect in your class?

A: So, you’ve seen the straps and probably think we’ve gone crazy. We’ll we’re not crazy yet, but give us time. Lets clear a few things up, yes we are sort of going to suspend you from the ceiling, and secondly, of course it will hold you up. YOU are going to be doing all of holding, pulling, pushing and sweating, which is why TRX is so effective. Body weight training has long been proven to be an effective way of toning muscles, building strength, and maintaining stamina. In my class members can expect a full body workout that is full of super sets designed to safely challenge each body part and opposing muscles. This is about strength and endurance so I like to use the clock for at least one minute intervals, also designed to allow me to visit each participant for safety and personal interaction.

Q: When can we expect you pulling, pushing, and instructing this class?

A: I teach in the evenings on Monday’s and Wednesday’s from 7:30pm to 8:15pm. Just late enough to bookend those long hard days that our members put in, and just early enough to have some recovery food afterwards, and get a good nights sleep to do it all again the next day.

 

Q: I’ve never done TRX before! What is the best way for me to try out your class?

A: Email me for a complimentary session!  If you’ve never taken a class before it’s ok, we love new participants, it gives us all a chance to go back to the basics and improve our form which is imperative for success. Send me an e-mail at amiller@vidafitness.com and I will gladly sign you up for a trial class.

 

Remember: If it was easy, everyone would have it! Get ready to work hard and feel better! See you in class.

Apr 25 2016

#VIDAResolution Round Two: The Winners!

Spring is finally here, and thanks to our 2nd annual #VIDAresolution challenge dozens of VIDA members are heading into the summer feeling stronger, healthier and leaner than they were when making a New Year’s Resolution back in January.

Resolutions are tough to stick to, with only a small percentage of gym-goers keeping up with the training and nutrition plans that they commit to on January 1st. However, this year we are proud to acknowledge four people who stuck to their workout routines, made healthy, creative food choices and kept their goals in the forefront of their minds through the start of 2016. Please help us in congratulating this year’s #VIDAresolution winners!

First Place: Melisa Augusto @melisaaugusto (1 YEAR free membership!)

Melisa's 'Before' Photo (January 2016)

Melisa (January 2016)

Melisa's 'After' Photo (March 2016)

Melisa (March 2016)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Melisa started her weight loss journey several years ago (she has lost over 65 lbs total!) but had recently hit a plateau seeing progress with her training. When she discovered the #VIDAresolution challenge, she knew that it was the perfect opportunity to switch things up and jumpstart a new training regimen!

She started January strong with a heavy cardio schedule and trying out new VIDA classes. Melisa has been an avid runner for the past few years (she has finished 50+ races, including two full marathons and 11 half marathons!) but felt she needed a change from just running to start seeing results. She began incorporating cycling into her weekly routine several times a week (iRide is her fave!) while still completing as many races as she could.  However, Melisa knew that to change her body she would need more than just cardio. She started our ‘Women Who Lift’ program at the Yards with Trainer Sarah Miller to incorporate strength training into her regimen and started seeing major changes!

“By changing my routine and incorporating more lifting into my regiment, I have definitely seen a transformation in my body. While I am still determined to reach my goal weight, I am certainly buying into the school of thought that not all progress is measured by the scale, but also in inches lost and the shape of my body,” says Melisa.

Melisa’s goal is to lose 100 lbs total, and we’re confident that we’ll see her reach that goal very soon!

“This challenge has been a great experience in pushing boundaries by putting my journey out there for all to see, while also holding myself accountable for the results. I am pleased with the weight and inches (10!) that I lost during this challenge and look forward to continuing what I started. I know that by the end of this year you will see a totally different woman working out at VIDA (& running the DC streets!” she says.

Second Place: Danielle @FITxDM (6 months free membership!)

Danielle January 2016

Danielle January 2016

Danille Side By Side Transformation (March 2016)

Danille Side By Side Transformation (March 2016)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

As a former high school and college athlete, Danielle grew up playing sports and staying fit and active. However, the post-college workforce took a toll on her body as many of us can relate, and she found herself having less time to focus on her health and fitness. For the past four years, Danielle describes what felt like an unraveling of the healthy & strong body she once had. She recalls taking her “before” photos and feeling ashamed of her body, but feeling more determined than ever to make a change.

Danielle joined VIDA last year, and started training with Personal Trainer Medina Roberts at Verizon. It was Medina who encouraged her to join the #VIDAresolution challenge, and Danielle says she’s so grateful she did!

“I made a promise to myself that I was going to start putting my health first. Joining this challenge added another layer of accountability, which helped to keep me motivated. My sessions with Medina have taught me so much about what my body is capable of and to not be afraid of pushing myself. I feel much more comfortable in the gym, I know my way around the weight lifting areas, and Medina has set me up with training splits so I can work out on my own with confidence. In terms of progress, I saw changes in my body after 2 weeks. I am happier and have higher energy levels than before I started a regular exercise program. The best part of these last 3 months is seeing my body tighten and tone, having my clothes fit better and feeling more alert and awake while at work. I also completed the DC Half marathon, and credit my strength training in my increased endurance and easy recovery. When I took my ‘after’ photos, I could not believe the side by side comparison. I am so proud of what I have accomplished, and I am not done yet! This is just the start of my fitness journey, and I am more motivated than ever to keep moving forward,” says Danielle.

Not only has Danielle lost the 10 lbs she hoped to lose in the contest, but she has also dropped 10% body fat as well! We’d like to congratulate her on such a remarkable accomplishment in only three months time.

“I want to thank my trainer, Medina Roberts, for her encouragement and educating me every step of the way. She has become a close friend, and I look forward to continuing to train with her!” says Danielle.

Third Place (Tie): Anne @fitgrl16 (3 months free membership!)

Anne (January 2016)

Anne (January 2016)

Anne (March 2016)

Anne (March 2016)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

You might recognize Anne as last year’s #VIDAresolution first runner-up! Since then she has been putting in work at the gym, working hard to change body fat into muscle. She has definitely accomplished this goal – as she went from being able to do exactly one push-up at the start of the contest to 130 in one day at the finish!

Anne had great success with this contest, and says she has never felt fitter or healthier. She has lost 2 inches off her waist, dropped two whole pants sizes and lowered her BMI from 24.5 to 23.4. Plus, she’s seeing ab definition for the first time in her life!

“The #VIDAresolution challenge was absolutely the accountability I needed to stick to my resolution. I have been pleasantly shocked by the change I have seen in my body in the last two and a half months. I have never in my life felt comfortable in a bikini and now I feel like I can wear one in public without traumatizing people!” says Anne.

She explains that after losing a significant amount of weight before the contest started, her goal was to up her weight training and focus on building muscle where there used to be fat. With a regular strength training and cardio schedule at VIDA, she was able to do just that!

“After losing the weight, I spent 9 months or so looking for the motivation to tone my new body. The #VIDAresolution challenge and the necessary social media check-ins gave me the accountability that I needed to get to the gym and be productive once I was there. Thank you for the motivation to make this change!” she says.

Third Place (Tie): Brighton Springer @LegallyBright (3 months free membership!)

Brighton (January 2016)

Brighton (January 2016)

Brighton (March 2016)

Brighton (March 2016)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Brighton joined the #VIDAresolution contest after having a baby, hoping to shed the last of her pregnancy weight and regain some confidence in her body. She was hoping to build back muscle, lose the extra pounds, and build the endurance to complete the Cherry Blossom 10-Miler earlier this month. We’re happy to report that she did all three!

She started out in January doing a couple group fitness classes a week at our Verizon location, but quickly upped that frequency to 3-4 once she started seeing results! She added running to and from the gym to train for the upcoming race, and always opted for the heavy weights in class.

“I always chose the heaviest weights I could handle and always tried to punch it up even if that meant I couldn’t finish a repetition. The last month of the contest I really kicked it into high gear and was running to the gym 3-4 weeks from L’Enfant Plaza (about a mile) and walking back after my workout,” says Brighton.

In total, Brighton lost 12 pounds, completed the Cherry Blossom 10-miler, and has regained the confidence she was seeking in her post-baby body! The challenge helped her develop a healthy, positive outlook on exercising and she’s looking forward to continuing her progress.

“They say it takes 21 days to build a habit. I can safely say that I have made a habit out of exercising at VIDA and I’m loving my results! I have learned to love this amazing body and looking forward to future gains!” says Brighton.

 

We’d like to say a HUGE congratulations to all who participated in this year’s #VIDAresolution challenge, and we wish you all the best of luck in continuing to reach your goals!

Apr 8 2016

Meet New Instructor Susie Zender at U Street!

SuzieSusie Zender is a VIDA triple threat – as a former Membership Consultant turned Personal Trainer and now Group Fitness Instructor! You can catch her on the U Street floor training clients from the early hours to late at night most days out of the week and now teaching a Conditioning class Tuesdays at noon.

As a lifelong athlete growing up in Ohio, Susie played a variety of sports including soccer, swimming, diving, track & field and competitive cheerleading. She majored in Exercise Science at Cedarville University where she competed on the Track & Field team for sprint relays and pole vaulting, and decided to turn fitness into a career.

Susie started personal training in 2013 where she also worked as a Membership Consultant for a private health club in Dublin, Ohio. She easily made the transition to VIDA after moving to DC last year and trained at both U Street at Verizon as a Membership Consultant. Due to her outgoing and friendly nature, she was successful right off the bat with forming relationships and helping new members feel at home!

Despite her success as part of our membership team, Susie was passionate about putting her personal training background to use and helping people reach their individual fitness goals.

“I loved meeting new members and helping them get connected to the club, but I really missed being directly involved in the process of helping them become more fit. The personal trainer in me was just not satisfied sending people on their way without personally being there to help them reach their goals. It didn’t take long for me switch to the training department!” she says.

Being a former competitive athlete, Susie describes her training style as intense and challenging. She loves introducing new exercises to her clients and witnessing them achieve more than they thought they could.

“I love having clients with a variety of goals and abilities and being able to challenge them in new ways!” she says.

Due to her rapid success as a Personal Trainer at U Street, Susie was quickly approached to start teaching group fitness classes as well. She taught a few classes while in college at Cedarville, and was eager to get back into the group fitness environment!

“I recently started teaching Conditioning, and I really enjoy instructing several people at once at different fitness levels and abilities. It’s exciting not knowing who will be coming to class on a given day!” she says.

She’s big on using exercises that incorporate all major muscle groups, such as burpees, jumping jacks, boxing drills, etc., so come ready to break a sweat and sharpen up those athletic skills!

When Susie isn’t training, teaching or making new friends at the gym, she enjoys spending her free time outdoors.

“I love being outside and doing anything recreational – especially hiking and mountain biking. If I have to be inside I like to cook, play guitar and paint,” she says.

If you haven’t met Susie yet, stop by for Conditioning this Tuesday at noon!