Fitness News & Views

A Publication of Graham Fitness

Jan. 15, 2016

1 Corinthians 6: 19-20


Considering a Personal Trainer?



If you are considering hiring a personal trainer, there are a few things you should keep in mind:

  • Make sure the trainer you hire is certified by a reputable certifying body. The American Council on Exercise (ACE) and the American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) are the two most respected organizations in the industry.
  • Check with a few of his or her current or previous clients. Your prospective trainer should be able to provide you with ample names to contact.
  • Be wary of any trainer who begins working with you without first doing some preliminary work to find out your current physical condition, your goals, and any physical issues you may have.
  • Be wary of any trainer who tries to sell you supplements that he or she profits from.
  • Try to determine before making a large commitment if you and your prospective trainer are going to be compatible. It's not good to have a trainer with a personality that clashes with yours.

Maybe I can be of service to you. Check out my website Read my bio and check the testimonials page. Let me know if I can help. You can call or text me at 803-447-8557 or email




            The New Year is here and you started an exercise program and after spending an hour or more in the gym for the first time in years, you could hardly get out of bed the next morning because you were so sore. What you experienced is known as DOMS - Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness.

            When you exercise for the first time in a while or increase the intensity of your workout or change your workout, you are very likely to feel soreness, because you have torn microscopic muscle fibers and some mild inflammation has set in. Between workouts, your muscles repair themselves and become stronger. Your strength gains actually come during your rest days, not your workout days. That's why it's important to take a day off between strength and resistance workouts.

            But back to DOMS. Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness is not serious. In fact, it's a sign that you are working with enough intensity to do some good. If you continue to do the same workout, you probably won't get sore unless you increase the intensity significantly. If you haven't been sore in a while, it's probably time to vary your workout. As a matter of fact, I make my clients switch their workouts at least every six weeks. I personally do a different workout every time I'm in the gym. I work the same muscle groups, but do different exercises. I do this with some of my clients as well.

            Don't confuse soreness with pain. You'll know the difference. Soreness is okay. Pain is an indication of an injury of some kind. If you feel pain, don't try to work through it. You may do some real damage that will prevent any exercise for a while.

            Finally, some people experience DOMS more easily and more frequently than others, just like some people sweat more profusely than others. More soreness or consistent soreness doesn't necessarily equate to more efficient workouts, just as no soreness doesn't necessarily mean you're wasting your time in the gym.





         After running almost every day for 38 years, I'm finally cutting back. I began running in 1977 when I was 30 years old. I stopped drinking and smoking that year and resolved to get myself in better shape. I was 5'7" and weighed 185 pounds, 45 pounds more than I currently weigh.
         I started running for health, but it soon became an obsession. When I say I ran almost every day, I'm not exaggerating. There was one stretch of over six years - over 2000 days - when I literally did not miss one day. And I was a pretty good runner. I ran sub 7 minute miles through my 40's and 7:30 to 8 minute miles in my 50's. But in the last few years, my times have slowed considerably. Anymore I'm lucky if I can break 11 minutes per mile. I've also gone from running 25 to 30 miles or more a week to less than 15 per week. Still until a couple of weeks before Christmas I ran 30 minutes a day, five days a week without fail. That's when I decided to cut back. I won't go into all the reasons for that decision here, but suffice it to say, I'm 68 years old now, and age takes its toll. And besides, I've logged by a conservative estimate about 29,000 miles running or almost 10 trips across the United States, and that's enough.

            Don't get me wrong. I'll still run some, including an occasional 5k race, but I'll walk a lot more. Mostly what I'm doing now is running and walking. For instance I might run a half mile, then walk a quarter mile or run six minutes and walk two. Or I might reverse those numbers. I'll do this for 30 minutes, six days a week and take one day completely off. If you've been thinking about running for exercise, this is a good way to start.

            Of course, I'll continue to workout with weights as well. Strength exercise is more important as you age than it is as a youth.   I'll get two to three sessions in the gym a week, but I'm not trying to impress anyone anymore. The days of bench pressing my weight are over. As I approach seven decades of life, I'm just now beginning to learn moderation. A part of me wishes I'd learned it earlier, but another part of me is glad I didn't.

              More whole grains, less fat. Since the 70's that's been the nutritional mantra. Yet in the last 40 years as our fat consumption has dropped, the rates of heart disease and diabetes have doubled. Something isn't adding up. To complicate matters even more, some countries like France and Switzerland eat a lot of saturated fat yet have a very low incidence of heart disease.

            So what's going on? Well, as it turns out, our bodies need fat to function properly - all types of fat except trans fats. Fat builds stronger bones, helps us sleep better by increasing our serotonin levels, helps our eyes, skin, and hair, and improves our immune systems. We used to think saturated fat - the fat in meat and cheese - increased our cholesterol, but now scientists are discovering it's just not the case. In fact, we now know that diets rich in saturated fats don't increase triglyceride levels as much as high carbohydrate diets.

            In some studies, it appears that coconut oil is effective in the treatment of Alzheimer's and Parkinson's patients. As for weight loss, a high fat, low carb diet such as the old Atkins Diet is still one of the most effective ways to trim the inches from the girth. And this is coming from someone who was once adamantly opposed to the Atkins approach.

           I can't tell you with certainty that any of this is absolutely true. Nutritional science changes rapidly. Coffee was once thought to be bad for the heart, now coffee is almost a health drink. Chocolate was bad, now dark chocolate is good for you. Red wine is healthy. No it's not. Do your own research. You'll probably end up as confused and frustrated as I am. But at least for now, the next time you sit down to eat a beautiful steak or prime rib, enjoy it without guilt.

         I am certified as a personal trainer by the American Council on Exercise which publishes "Fitness Journal," a magazine which goes out to its members monthly. Generally, the publication has a few interesting articles, some of which I've shared in this newsletter. But one article in this month's issue aggravated me. It is titled "World Obesity Federation Shares Worrisome News." I didn't even know there was a World Obesity Federation. I wonder who funds that.

            Anyway, the WOF projects that about 17 percent of the world's population will be obese by the year 2025. That's about 2.7 billion people. Their solution to this looming problem? More government intervention. Here are the ideas that Tim Lobstein, PhD, director of policy for the WOF, proposes: government regulation of junk-food advertising aimed at kids, healthier school food options, taxes and subsidies to make healthy foods cheaper and unhealthy foods more expensive, and more. I wonder what the "more" encompasses. Imprisonment of McDonald's franchise owners?

            Government intervention will not fix the problem of obesity. People know why they are getting fatter. They eat too much and they don't exercise enough. The solution to the obesity problem lies with personal responsibility, but if people don't want to change their lifestyles, that's their decision. Why do we have to look for the government to fix everything that's wrong? It seems to me the more the government tries to fix, the worse things get. And while I'm ranting, all you employees of the World Obesity Federation, get a real job.


         It's the season for the common cold. More people get a cold in January or February than any other months. The reason we are told is because we are inside more and thus exposed to more germs from other people who are also inside more. The cold weather has nothing to do with it according to the experts. Going out in the cold with wet hair, not wearing a coat on frigid days, and even going barefoot won't give you a cold.
         Colds come from viruses, and there are hundreds of different varieties. Whenever you have a cold, you develop an immunity to that particular virus, but since there are so many, you never become immune to all of them. Viruses are transmitted by touching something that is contaminated, such as a doorknob, and then putting your hand to your nose or eyes which are both breeding grounds for viruses.

            Once you have a cold, there's not much you can do but wait it out. Most colds run their course in seven to ten days. Viruses, unlike bacterial infections, do not respond to antibiotics, and over the counter remedies only treat the cold symptoms, not the actual virus. One thing I can personally recommend is Zicam, which is a zinc supplement. Anecdotally, these lozenges, which you dissolve in your mouth, seem to help me, but you must start taking it at the very first sign of a cold. The zinc supposedly builds up your immune system which helps reduce the cold's severity. Try it if you like, it can't hurt unless you are immune to zinc or can't stand the metallic taste it leaves in your mouth.

            One other thing, don't confuse a cold with the flu. Influenza is a serious ailment which causes high fever and nausea, symptoms not associated with the common cold. The flu will put you in bed for a few days. You can usually keep going with a cold.


size=2 width="100%" align=center>

If you want to be part of the fitness in-crowd for 2016, here are some terms you need to add to your vocabulary:

  • AMRAP. As Many Rounds As Possible. You'll hear this one at CrossFit. Used in a sentence: "Each set is 10 pushups and 20 squats AMRAP-style. The time is 15 minutes. Now ... GO!"
  • Afterburn. Popular at Orangetheory Fitness, it means a boost in your metabolism that lasts for hours after your workout is over.       Used in a sentence: "Keep that heart rate up on the rower if you want the full afterburn."
  • Pood. . A Russian unit of weight equal to about 36 pounds. You might hear this one with kettlebell junkies.       Used in a sentence: "That dude's a beast. I saw him doing single arm swings with a two-pood bell."
  • Rooster Squad. The group attending the earliest class of the day. This is trendy at SoulCycle. Used in a sentence: "I have to hit the sack.       I'm down for the rooster squad tomorrow."


And I leave you with this quote from one of my clients: "My favorite exercise is the one between a lunge and a crunch. It's called lunch."

Graham Fitness
Tim Graham

ACE Certified Personal Trainer

Certified Nutrition Specialist



Phone: 803-447-8557

Please Support The Loyal Advertisers That Make This Newsletter Possible

Rep & Run

Are you looking for fitness equipment? Call Rep & Run. Rep & Run is your source for whatever fitness equipment you need, whether it's cardio machines like treadmills and ellipticals or resistance machines of any type. Even free weights like barbells and dumbbells. Jason Puckett will work with you personally to get you exactly what you want. As a newsletter subscriber, you receive a 20% discount on most of the equipment Jason offers. Call Jason at 803-550-1734 or check the website at

Discount Tire of Irmo

7948 Broad River Road

Irmo, SC 29063

Phone: 749-1633

When you need automotive service, go to Discount Tire of Irmo. They sell Michelin, Pirelli, Bridgestone, BF Goodrich and many other name brand tires at discount prices. If you need other automotive repair work, they will do the job and they'll do it right. From brakes to alignments and all kinds of mechanical repair, you can depend on them to do the work right and get your car back to you quickly, and all at a fair price. For integrity, dependability, and quality, call Larry Warner at Discount Tire of Irmo.

Harbison Recreation Center
106 Hillpine Road
Columbia, SC 29212
Phone: 781-2281

The Harbison Rec Center offers more facilities for less money than anywhere else in town These are just some of the features: a new weight room with all new machines, free weights, treadmills, ellipticals, and stationary bikes; a 25 meter junior Olympic size indoor heated swimming pool; sauna; whirlpool; racquet ball and tennis courts; a basketball gym; and miles of traffic-free trails for walking or jogging. There are classes for seniors as well as summer camp and after school programs for kids. Also newly remodeled locker rooms and an all-purpose room for large gatherings. All for only $315 a year for singles or $600 a year for families Check out their website:

Wolf's Fitness Center
5432 August Road
Lexington, SC 29072
Phone: 356-6400

Wolf's is a total fitness facility offering some great amenities. There's a huge weight room featuring free weights and machines. There is a cardio area with treadmills, ellipticals, stationary bikes, stair steppers, and the cardio theater. Other amenities include an indoor walking/running track, sauna, child care facilities with an attendant, tanning beds, clean locker rooms and showers, and sports supplements. Prices are very reasonable and there are no enrollment fees ever. Wolf's also offers a full slate of fitness classes including kickboxing and pilates, as well as spinning classes. Check out their website, for rates and specials.



Graham Fitness, 106 Hillpine Road, Columbia, SC 29212

Constant Contact