Editor's Choice: Health and Fitness Ideas for 2010
Get educated: If you’re tired of going it alone when it comes to health resolutions, let the experts weigh in on your fitness needs. K-Star Fitness of Lake in the Hills is owned and operated by two certified fitness professionals, Ron Keable and Mary Hermann, whose goal is to create a custom approach to weight loss and fitness for their clients. Together — with their many combined years of fitness experience — they offer a three-pronged approach to weight loss and health, incorporating dietary management, specialized cardiovascular training and a special strength-training regimen. Those who follow their program are guaranteed success or their money back, so there’s nothing to lose (but the weight!).
>> For more: 9521 Ackman Rd. in Lake in the Hills, 847-960-7277, www.kstarfitness.com.
Get into nature: The McHenry County Conservation District (MCCD) owns or manages more than 23,500 acres of open land diverse with woodlands, prairies, wetlands, ponds, creeks and rivers — the perfect setting for a workout with a view. Twenty-eight sites are currently open to the public year-round featuring trails, picnic shelters, campsites, fishing sites, rare plant and animal examples and educational facilities. In addition, within the district’s sites there are 17 dedicated state nature preserves. Through its sites and programs, MCCD offers everyone the opportunity to experience a green, healthy and balanced lifestyle while connecting with nature.
>> For more: 815-338-MCCD, www.mccdistrict.org.
Take care of yourself: Centegra HealthBridge Fitness Centers in Crystal Lake and Huntley exist to make a difference in people’s lives by providing an educated approach to the fitness, health and well being of the communities it serves. HealthBridge Fitness Centers are McHenry County’s only medically based fitness centers, offering an impressive array of equipment and services, featuring medically integrated classes and lectures, state-of-the-art indoor tennis, indoor running tracks, enormous aquatic centers, massage therapy, weight management, mind/body opportunities, personal training and an onsite rehabilitation, registered dietitians and sports medicine clinic.
>> For more: 200 E. Congress Pkwy. in Crystal Lake, or 10450 Algonquin Road, Huntley, 815-444-2900, www.healthbridgefitness.com.
Join the party: The Zumba program — offered by Cary Physical Therapy in Cary — fuses hypnotic Latin rhythms and easy-to-follow moves to create a one-of-a-kind fitness program that promotes long-term health benefits. The 50-mintue session can burn up to 500 calories — all while having fun. “Classes combine simple steps such as Salsa, Cha Cha or Merengue to get your heart pumping and your core working,” according to Cary Physical Therapy. Today, Zumba is being taught at more than 40,000 locations in 75 countries — with an astonishing 5 million participants taking Zumba classes every week. Cary Physical Therapy also offers ever-popular Pilates classes. “Many of our clients love the core strengthening and flexibility they achieve with Pilates,” it added. Guests are welcome to test the Pilates equipment and mat classes before committing to a class.
>> For more: 2615 Three Oaks Road in Cary, 847-516-8095, www.caryphysicaltherapy.com.
Find your life force: Aikido Shimboku Dojo in LITH trains in the traditional Japanese martial art of Aikido developed in the 1920s by Morihei Ueshiba O-Sensei. It evolved from the older forms of Jujutsu to a non-violent, defensive martial art. It is a discipline that focuses on development of the body and the mind, and trains one to move in harmony with oneself and others. At the heart of Aikido is the Eastern concept of ki — the universal creative principle. Aikido seeks to unite this universal ki with the ki (life force or breath) found within each person. Literally, Aikido translates as “the way of harmony with ki.” Through training in Aikido, one can develop one’s ability for self-protection. This is accomplished by the practice of both receiving and executing various techniques. Firmness, stability and elegance are what make Aikido a powerful and effective martial art. Systematic practice results in overall body conditioning by increasing flexibility and strength. Aikido is practiced by thousands worldwide, not only for fitness and self-defense, but as a vehicle for deep personal development.
>>For more: 9225 Trinity Dr. in Lake in the Hills, 847-458-9309, www.aikidoshimbokudojo.com.
Take a holistic approach: Acupuncture & Oriental Medicine of McHenry (AOMM) takes a holistic approach to the healing of chronic pain, sports injuries, migraines, carpal tunnel syndrome and other conditions that affect one’s overall health and wellness. Acupuncture and herbal medicines used at AOMM have been used for thousands of years by the people of Asia for all types of healing. Though rooted in history and tradition, holistic health care is today a growing area of interest, and AOMM is happy to bring these healing techniques to its patients. The treatment modalities it offers help bring patients to optimal health.
>>For more: 3923 Mercy Dr., Suite A, McHenry, 815-363-1390, http://aommchenry.com.
Get in the game: If you’re looking for a place to learn and/or practice team sports in 2010, SportsCity Academy in Woodstock is the place to be. SportsCity is a state-of-the-art facility offering team and individual training. It offers team training facilities for baseball, softball, basketball, volleyball, soccer, football, lacrosse and other sports. SportsCity offers batting cages with automatic ball return for baseball, fast-pitch softball and slow-pitch softball, with daily hitting specials. The facility also offers lessons, camps, and memberships. Birthday party packages can include dodgeball, wiffleball, kickball and batting cages.
>> For more: 1269 Cobblestone Way in Woodstock, 815-334-1900, http://sportscityacademy.com.
Run for your life: Aerobic workouts like running and walking improve overall health while aiding in weight loss and relieving stress. Every good workout begins with the right equipment, and it all begins from the bottom up. Finding the right shoes can be a little daunting as there are a variety of brands that offer a good selection of shoes for walking and running. The Running Depot in Crystal Lake takes the confusion out of shoe shopping by measuring foot length and width and analyzing a pronation to ensure that the athlete is in the right shoe category. The store also utilizes the computerized Aetrex System, which measures pressure points and can recommend an insert to minimize the pressure points and disperse the weight evenly throughout the foot. “After getting you in the proper shoe category, you will be able to try on various brands of shoes,” owner/manager Pam Andrews said. “Every shoe brand fits and feels differently, so it is imperative that you try on different brands to ensure you get the shoe that feels the best and fits the best on your foot.” The Running Depot also has a treadmill so runners can test shoes for comfort. The fitting process takes approximately 20 to 30 minutes. For those looking to get involved in local races, running clubs and programs in the community, the Running Depot is also an excellent resource.
>> For more: 30 N. Williams St., Ste. E in Crystal Lake, www.therunningdepot.com, 815-788-9755.
Go beyond skin deep: Health and beauty go hand in hand, and today, women and men are looking for natural, green remedies to attain skin health. Two local women — Kimberly Thomson and Pam Gray — offer skin care from L’Bri Pure n’ Natural that promises to moisturize and repair damaged skin with aloe vera. In addition to skin care products, L’Bri offers color cosmetics, as well as opportunities to sell its products.
>> For more, call Thomson at 815-236-1243 or Gray at 815-861-2273. For product information, visit www.lbri.com.
Put your best foot forward: Many people are heading back to the gym to keep their New Year’s resolutions. New aches and pains are a common problem. While overexertion can be a culprit, injuries can also stem from faulty foot structure and mechanics. For example, people who have flat feet put abnormal pressure on their feet and strain on their tendons. Heel pain, particularly plantar fasciitis, is also a common injury for those who begin working out again. It is often characterized by sharp pain in the heel or arch, especially in the morning with the first step out of bed. It is important to be examined to rule out a stress fracture in these cases. Achilles tendonitis causes pain and inflammation in the back of the leg, especially with activity. If not treated appropriately, it can lead to degeneration of the tendon and possibly rupture. Taking precautions like stretching and wearing proper fitting shoes can help prevent injuries. If you have any foot or ankle complaints, to avoid further injury, you should be evaluated by a podiatrist. Cary-based Cary Grove Foot & Ankle Center accepts new patients and can often accommodate with same-day appointments.
>> For more: 113 W. Main St. in Cary, 847-639-5800.
Learn a healthy “weigh” of life: For more than 20 years, nutrition specialist and inspirational speaker Heidi Kramer has inspired thousands to lose weight, change bad eating habits and become champions of their own health. Through individual consultations, group classes, presentations and workshops, Kramer shares her passion for real food and its positive effects for living a healthy and vibrant life. Consultations are available for weight loss, healthy heart, maximizing sports performance, cancer and good nutrition for life-long health.
>> For more, call 847-516-9038 or visit www.lifeinspiredspeaking.com.She’s also available at Cary Physical Therapy: 2615 Three Oaks Road in Cary, 847-516-8095, www.caryphysicaltherapy.com.
Jump into fitness: Cold weather often leaves kids indoors sitting in front of the TV and video games. Pump It Up! in Crystal Lake provides a “workout” for kids and adults that is so much fun, they don’t even realize they’re burning calories and relieving stress — all while jumping and laughing with friends. The inflatable party zone offers private indoor arenas filled with gigantic inflatable slides, bounce houses, obstacle courses and more. Programs range from birthday parties to corporate team-building events. It also offers unique family special events, including the popular Jump N’ Meal program where kids eat free when they jump.
>> For more: 1095 Pingree Rd. in Crystal Lake, 847-854-3737, www.pumpitupcrystallake.com.