Plus 10 Tips on Getting & Staying Healthy Through the Holidays
Since 1973, Saw Mill Club (SMC) of Mt. Kisco has been a cornerstone for fitness and health in the Westchester community. The club started out as a small indoor tennis facility and has been expanding ever since. The family friendly club currently has more than 7,000 members who live within a 10-mile radius. SMC opened a separate facility, Saw Mill Club East (SMCE), located at 333 North Bedford Road in Mt. Kisco.
“Saw Mill Club is your friendly neighborhood everything club, meaning we offer everything fitness including boutique studios for barre, yoga, group cycling, and award-winning tennis and aquatics departments,” says Media & Creative Director Barbara Accetta. In addition, SMC offers numerous in-house services like massage therapy, brows and facials by Ileana Fanita, chiropractic care by Dr. Eric Drucker at Saw Mill East, Dr. Louis Campbell, and Spa Chiara, a full-service medical spa founded by Dr. Sharon DeChiara, a board certified plastic surgeon. “There’s also a focus on family at Saw Mill Club, and our Children’s Center provides daycare, summer camp, and preschool,” says Accetta. “My toddler loves it, and I love that I can squeeze in a barre class and some pampering between work knowing that she’s well taken care of and happy,” Accetta adds.
Joining a Health Club vs. a Gym
Joining a club is different from just joining a gym. SMC is a micro-community that reaches beyond the fitness aspect. We all know the physical benefits to getting fit–lower blood pressure, lower risk for Type 2 diabetes, lower body fat, increased muscle mass, etc. However, being active is an important component to our mental health as well and can reduce the risk for depression and help lower anxiety and stress levels. In addition, studies show that interacting socially can increase lifespans and add to quality of life–especially in seniors. SMC acknowledges this social component and extends its reach into the community via social outings and activities for seniors, fundraising events for breast cancer, tennis programs for special needs groups–just to name a few.
“This is who we are,” says Terry Lanza, Regional Director of Membership & Sales. Lanza brings along 22 years of experience in fitness. She’s passionate about the Saw Mill Club and what it has to offer its members. “People join our club for many different fitness goals, but, recently, I’ve been meeting with a lot baby boomers who are caring for their aging parents, and they realize the importance of taking care of themselves as a whole going forward,” says Lanza. “Saw Mill Club is unique in that it’s a family-owned facility. The owner, Rick Beusman, has continually kept up with the times and, recently, acquired approximately $500,000 of state-of-the-art equipment,” says Lanza. Kinesis from TechnoGym allows for over 250 exercises and movements that improve strength, flexibility, and balance. SMC exclusively offers ARTIS, TechnoGym’s cardio equipment like treadmills, ellipticals, steppers, and cross-trainers.
In every area of fitness, SMC’s highly-trained staff is accessible. The club provides various approaches to getting fit and staying healthy. With their Smart Start program, new members are given a choice of two free private sessions. For example, you can work with a personal trainer or brush up on your swim stroke or tennis swing.
Research shows that changing things up in your workout and using different muscle groups gets better results. With the wide range of options, you can always change up your workout from being a mundane routine. Some members may be drawn to classes in the Soft Studio including yoga, pilates, barre, and fusion classes. Others may prefer the Aerobic Studio like Zumba or their Fire it Up cardio and strength workout. While others may be attracted to swimming, group cycle, or the Kinesis or TRX suspension training equipment.
10 Tips for Getting & Staying Healthy Through the Holidays
Fun-filled holiday gatherings bring temptation. Eating healthy and staying on a fitness plan during the holiday season is, no doubt, a challenge. The busy holiday season can bring along stress as well, and we can find ourselves less motivated to stick to an active, healthy regimen.
Below are just a few tips from the fitness staff.
1. Get a Jumpstart
Fitness Director Billy Goda shares some tips from his book, The Personal Trainer’s Roadmap to Success. “Set your fitness goals before the holidays. Typically, we see a spike in membership after the holidays with New Year’s resolutions, but starting a fitness plan before the holidays will give you an advantage,” says Goda.
2. Ink It
Another tip in Goda’s book: Ink It. “You have to put it in ink. So, at the beginning of the week, you need to pull out your calendar, choose three days, and write it in….It’s all about consistency,” says Goda.
3. Changing It Up
Once you’re consistent with your schedule, your workout routine should never be the same. Working different muscle groups and changing up your workout is the key to overall success. “You’ve got to wake up those muscles,” says Goda.
4. Creating Realistic Goals & Forming Healthy Habits
“Shoot for three days a week to work out. If you do more, great. If you can only make it two days, that’s okay,” says Goda. “I don’t care what kind of gains you make in the first couple of weeks….What I care about is what happens further down the line—three, six, nine months from now. By then, you’ve formed the proper habits….You’re going to feel better, sleep better, and have more energy.”
5. Staying Centered & Grounded
The mind-body connection is what yoga is all about. Yoga improves your posture, helps remove tension from the body, improves your mood, sharpens your mind, and boosts your immune system.
“The most important approach for the holidays is to stay centered and grounded. This is what we practice in yoga–poses, stability, balance, focus, and breathing,” says Yoga Director Michelle Briks.
6. Set an Intention
“Even before you get out of bed, set an intention for the day,” says Briks. Maybe your intention is staying focused on a project or learning to take a step back and breathe when you’re feeling stressed. “Focus on something you want to achieve for the day, and remind yourself and connect back to that intention during the day.”
7. Staying Hydrated
“Staying hydrated is important. Many people forget to stay hydrated in the fall and winter months,” says Briks, who is also a nutritionist. Also, starting your day with a half of a lemon squeezed into a 6 oz. cup of hot water balances the ph levels in the body, reduces cravings, eliminates toxins, and aides digestion. “Drinking room temperature water instead of cold water keeps the metabolism strong and running smoothly throughout the day,” says Briks.
8. The Ayurvedic Approach to Eating
Adding spices to warm, whole foods that come from the ground like squash, root vegetables, and leafy greens vegetables not only helps to satisfy our appetite, but has added health benefits. According to the Ayurvedic approach to eating, each meal should contain six flavors–sweet, sour, salty, bitter, astringent, and pungent. For example, cinnamon can help regulate blood sugar levels, cardamom helps eliminate waste through the kidneys, turmeric is a natural anti-inflammatory, and ginger aides digestion.
9. Group Exercise Creates a Social Circle & Support System
“Seeing a person as a whole is very important,” says Director of Group Exercise Kathleen Goldring. “We are all unique,” she adds. Group workouts do more than just get you in great shape. The social component of group classes is a terrific way to meet new friends who share your fitness goals.
SMC offers a wide-range of group exercise programs for all ages including seniors. Party Cycle is a non-intimidating cycling class disguised as fun, yet there are also more intense cycling classes for seasoned spinners. Power Shred uses a combination of functional movement and light weights for full body results, and oftentimes the class is led by a live DJ. Saw Mill Club even offers Express Classes, 30 minutes in length, for those who may be in a rush but crave a group workout. There are over 200 group exercise classes weekly between SMC and SMCE–all of which are offered for various skill levels and interests including boot camp, strength training, cardio and core, and Zumba.
10. The Nonjudgmental Approach
We all have our challenges and are at different phases in life. We come with our own fitness goals in mind. Some may have body image issues. Some may have injuries they’re working through, or some may be dealing chronic illnesses. “The key is not to feel intimidated. We try to create a nonjudgmental, all-inclusive atmosphere to help members feel motivated and empowered,” says Goldring.
For a tour of Saw Mill Club, please contact Terry Lanza at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 914-241-0797.