‘Tis the season. Tips to get you through all those holiday parties!

holiday eating 1Deserts, drinks and food, OH MY! Holidays are great, spending time with those we love and celebrating all we have in our lives; however food and drinks always seem to be the focus of every party. It becomes difficult to stay on track and we lose sight of all the hard work we have already put in. We want you to reach your goals and not be set-back over the holiday season, so we have come up with eight simple tips to help you stay on track! Don’t forget to continue to carve out time for yourself to get your workouts in, at Allegro or on your own!

Tip #1 – Never show up to a party super hungry.
Eat something light before you head to the party.

Tip#2 – Drink 1 to 2 glasses of water right before you arrive at the party.
This will help you feel fuller and curb cravings.

Tip#3 – Don’t eat anything at the party for the first 20-30 minutes.
Socialize and have a good time, and avoid standing right next to the buffet table.

Tip#4 – Don’t deprive yourself.
It’s okay to enjoy a treat every now and then, just do so in moderation.

Tip#5 – Choose simple foods packed with protein and fiber.
That way you will be less likely to overeat. Shrimp cocktail, raw veggies, grilled chicken and beef skewers are great party staples to stick with.

Tip#6 – Assorted chilled seafood is a great option.
Shrimp, crab meat, mussels and scallops are all super low in calories and fat.

Tip#7 – An easy way to monitor your portion sizes is to put your foods on a small plate or even a napkin.
You can’t fit as much on a napkin, so you won’t eat as much!

Tip#8 – Once you have had your fill of food at the party, have a piece of gum or mint.
You won’t be as tempted to go back for seconds.

Follow these simple tips and visit us at the studio to stay on track this holiday season!







Why personal training?

Written by Ryan Pender: B.S., M.S., NSCA-CPT, CSCS

pt1 If you are reading this blog you must fall into one of these three groups; you are fit, you are trying (or in the process of) getting fit, or you’ve thought about getting fit. No matter which demographic you fall into, I’m glad that you’re reading this because it means you have some bit of curiosity about personal training on your mind. At the very least, you want to find out how it is beneficial and why not only you but everybody should participate in some degree of personal training. I’ll address the three aforementioned groups, hopefully making that spark in your mind ignite a fire under your butt to get started and see that personal training is an incredibly wise investment in your health.

So you’re ready to get your fitness journey started, or at least want to find out how someone can help you? Note the word I used: journey. This means that your path will not be a start-and-stop trip which has a destination. Instead, it will be an ever-changing adventure with new turns, bumps, hills and challenges along the way. If you try to go on this big journey without knowing what to do or why to do it, you will unfortunately meet some failures and disappointments. Correct me if I’m wrong, but you wouldn’t start that journey if you knew you’d fail, would you? I didn’t think so. By meeting with a personal trainer, you are not only meeting with somebody that knows all (and I mean ALL) about what is needed for your journey, but they are on a journey themselves. Fitness, nutrition and wellness is what we live and breathe for. We know when we started our journeys, we have done what works, what doesn’t and we have educated ourselves about all of this so you don’t have to. You’re going on a journey and we are well along the same path with the experience and treachery of our own. We’ve made a road map of what works, let us share that with you to ensure you have the greatest physical and mental success you’ve ever had in your life.

That group is done, now onto you guys and gals who are either on the way to or are already in shape and fit. You go to classes, you may train in a small group, and you may even practice great nutrition to some extent. Now let’s put you into a scenario or two some of you may have been in or will be in at some point in time. Scenario one: you have a really busy schedule (with work, kids, etc.) and you miss classes this week. One week turns into two. Now you’re off the bandwagon altogether. Scenario two: you’re working you butt off doing 2 to 3 classes per day. You’re not really getting the results you (whether it’s weight loss, muscle gain, etc.) want and you get frustrated.

So here we go fit people, no matter who you are, we all need accountability from one or more people. For you individuals in the first scenario, your personal trainer will make sure you stay on track and you catch yourself when you trip and stumble from life’s twists and turns. Time with your trainer will almost be like a break from your crazy and stressful schedule. Fitness works so much better when you don’t get off track, so why not make sure you have a professional to hold you accountable and keep you motivated?pt2

Scenario number two, you fit people who are (supposedly) doing everything right. You’ll hear me say a couple things that will be hard to accept, but are true nonetheless. There’s nothing wrong with you and chances are you’re not a genetic anomaly which prevents you from losing weight or building muscle. This may be hard to hear especially if you’ve been working out for a long time, but you might be doing something wrong. Without getting into specifics, if you’ve been working out for a LONG time and you haven’t hit the goals you set out a LONG time ago, you NEED to change something. That something will not be found in a class or small group format. You need specific work with someone who knows your body better than you do. Personal trainers know how to get your body to move the way it’s supposed to, build muscle the way it’s supposed to, and have you feed it the foods you’re supposed to feed yourself to help everything we just mentioned. Not only that, but they will challenge you at everything you need to get better, stronger and pain free so your classes and small group sessions become that much more fun and enjoyable.

There you have it, folks. In a nutshell, your personal trainer is the person and professional who helps you along your long journey, but is also your accountability and expert partner. We are all educated adults (or on our way to becoming such), so we understand the importance of learning, growing and needing people for all of those steps to occur. Your personal trainer can and will be the person you need to improve your physical and mental well-being. Don’t just think of it as a monetary investment, but a personal investment in yourself. Now do yourself a favor…get off your butt and set up an appointment with your trainer!

Don’t have a trainer? Don’t worry! We have many trainers available and can help match you with the right person, if you don’t know who to go with. Call 616.451.9000 for more information or click here to see pricing.



Written by Coach Kendra

We are coming up on one of my favorite times of the year…..Thanksgiving! Why?

Because THANKSGIVING is a pure American holiday, filled with traditions: family, football, feasting, parades, charity runs, feeding the less fortunate and more feasting. Turkey, stuffing, pumpkin pies, oh my!

Every year, I take this month to just GIVE THANKS for all the blessings in my LIFE; in particular the PEOPLE in my life. At Allegro, this is our #livegrateful campaign acknowledging how grateful we are for you each and every day. As well, it serves as a great time to remind you to pay it forward to others alongside us. So many of you have helped me become the person I am today, continuing to INSPIRE and help me IMPACT other people’s lives in a healthy way. And I thank YOU for your laughter, high 5’s, loyalty, belief, mentoring and friendships at Allegro. As I’m often reminded, it’s not WHAT’s in your life….it’s WHO’s in your life that counts. So, as we enter this holiday season, I hope that you will find the time to slow down, simplify and allow some space in your life to reflect on all the many blessings you have in life. Big or small. Share them with your family, or better yet, write a letter to each person in your family, telling them WHY you are so grateful for them in your life.

Give thanks… to your spouse or significant other for their support and love.

Give thanks… to your children, young, grown or nearly born, for it is the sacred co-creation of life that is why we are here.

Give thanks… to your parents if they are still with us, let them know how much you appreciate their love and sacrifice for you.

Give thanks… to your friends, near and far, whom have been there for you, in good times and bad, who have your back.

Give thanks… to your mentors who gave you their precious time, wisdom and guidance; positively IMPACTING your Life.

Give thanks… to your teammates and staff that deliver with you VALUE, SERVICE and LOVE to your cherished customers.

Give thanks…to our first responders, our military, caregivers of the sick and so many working on Thanksgiving for their dedication.

Give thanks… to our clergy, pastors, ministers of faith who pray and shepherd and provide spiritual counseling for so many.

Give thanks…for our way of life, our freedom to choose, our ability to work as fitness/wellness/health professionals, humbling.

Give thanks… to God, your Faith, your higher power, your spiritual center that provides Light, Hope, and Peace for you and in you.

Give thanks … for YOURSELF. For the gifts you’ve been blessed with…For the beautiful journey you are on…For the positive difference you make for so many every day…And for the LOVE you “purposely” practice.

Be sure to show us why you are grateful this month with #livegrateful!