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    The following steps can help enhance your chances at earning a job in fitness:
    • Get educated: A degree in exercise physiology, nutrition, sports medicine, sports management or business will be beneficial -- and may be required.
    • Get certified: If you want to be a personal trainer or fitness instructor, a certification from an accredited organization will prove your qualifications.
    • Get prepared: Certification in first aid, cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR), the use of an automated external defibrillator (AED) and other emergency response training may be required.
    • Get online.Visit for job openings at health clubs and wellness companies. Resume posting and job searches are free with registration. You can set up automated searches that will email you with new matches.
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    Below are some of the key jobs available at health and fitness clubs.

    General manager:
    • Duties: Oversee club operations, membership and personal training sales, marketing, fitness programs and other responsibilities.
    • Requirements: Strong sales and management experience and a commitment to exemplary customer service.
    Fitness director:
    • Duties: Create and maintain fitness programming. Oversee group exercise, personal training, fitness assessments, member orientations and equipment. Responsible for hiring and supervising trainers.
    • Requirements: Must have strong supervisory experience and fitness knowledge.
    Group/aerobics instructor:
    • Duties: Lead various exercise classes and help participants maximize their results.
    • Requirements: Certification and/or instructional experience may be required, as well as an audition.
    Personal trainer:
    • Duties: Instruct clients on the proper methods of exercising according to their age, medical condition, fitness abilities and goals.
    • Requirements: Must have extensive knowledge of physical fitness and exercise.
    Sales representative:
    • Duties: Boost club sales, marketing and retention efforts by signing new members and renewing and upgrading existing members.
    • Requirements: Must have excellent communication skills, and experience in retail, telemarketing, sales and/or customer service.
  • 1 Answer
    Employment in the fitness industry can offer many benefits:
    • Environment: The atmosphere at most fitness clubs can be described as casual, energetic, friendly, positive and health­conscious.
    • Variety: Single­sex, corporate, family­friendly, adults­only -- whatever you’re looking for, there’s sure to be a club for you.
    • Schedule flexibility: Most clubs are open seven days a week, so there are positions for early birds, night owls, weekend warriors and everyone in between.
    • Location: There are probably several clubs within a short commute from your home.
    • Try before you commit: Part­time or independent contractor positions allow you to get your feet wet in the fitness industry, even if you work full­time elsewhere.
    • Opportunities for advancement: Many club executives got their start as personal trainers, group instructors or front desk personnel. As the industry continues to mature, professional opportunities abound.
    • Compensation: Many positions are commission­based; even instructors are sometimes paid based on club attendance. In short, great performances often result in higher compensation.
    • Other benefits can include free memberships, discounts on amenities and free babysitting for your kids. In addition, many clubs offer traditional employee benefits including health insurance (71% of clubs), matching 401(k) contributions (64% of clubs), retirement plans (76% of clubs), educational assistance (65% of clubs), life insurance (38% of clubs) and Section 125 plans (64% of clubs).
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    Starting an exercise program in middle-age can help you reap lifelong benefits on health and longevity.

    Norwegian researchers found that older men who spent six days of 30 minutes of moderate exercise had a 40% lower risk of death than those who didn’t exercise. The researchers believe that women would enjoy the same benefits. Across the pond, Canadian scientists found that postmenopausal women who got five hours of moderate-to-vigorous aerobic exercise every week lost significantly more body fat than women who exercised less. Both studies concluded that exercise helped increase longevity and cut disease risk.

    The takeaway: It’s never too late. Talk to your doctor about an exercise regimen.
  • 1 Answer
    Lifestyle physical activity is a behavior that is broadly defined as any bodily movement produced by the contraction of muscles that substantially increases energy expenditure. This type of behavior can be accumulated during one’s daily routine by participating in 30 or more minutes of self­selected physical activities. This can include leisure activities such as a nice walk in the park, occupational work such as walking to a coworker’s desk rather than sending an email, transportation such as riding a bicycle to the store, gardening or even household chores such as vacuuming.
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    National and international employers are invited to participate in Global Employee Health & Fitness Month (GEHFM), an observance of health and fitness in the workplace each May. During GEHFM employers will challenge their employees to create Healthy Moments, form Healthy Groups, and develop a Culminating Project.

    Participants will be able to log these activities on the GEHFM website throughout the month, allowing employers and employees to track, share and promote their individual and group activities. Exclusive GEHFM vendor products can be ordered at
  • 1 Answer
    Global Employee Health & Fitness Month (GEHFM) is an international and national observance of health and fitness in the workplace. Each May, the goal of GEHFM is to promote the benefits of a healthy lifestyle to employers and their employees through worksite health promotion activities and environments. Participation is free.

    Formerly National Employee Health & Fitness Day, GEHFM has been extended to a month-long initiative in an effort to generate sustainability for a healthy lifestyle and initiate healthy activities on an ongoing basis.
  • 2 Answers
    ADr. Darria Long Gillespie, MD, Emergency Medicine, answered
    Switching up your workouts -- rather than doing the same thing day after day -- has many benefits. For starters, it’s more fun to mix it up -- it adds some spice. Trying new activities makes it more likely that you’ll find something you really love doing and can stick with. It’s also better for your overall fitness. It strengthens different muscles and reduces your chances of a repetitive-stress injury. Studies have shown that people who do a combination of cardio and weights have better outcomes for weight and other benefits of exercise.
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    AHealthCorps answered
    A trend among endurance athletes is to intentionally train with low glycogen (sugar-based energy) stores. Your body naturally turns to available blood sugar and then glycogen stores of energy during the early phase of exercise. Once that's burned, the body starts to force fat metabolism, the next available source of energy. So if glycogen storage is low to begin with, the theory is that you will quickly begin to burn fat as your energy supply. Hence, the term training low. 

    How is this accomplished? Remember that various foods supply glucose (sugar), especially carbohydrates.  So if your carbohydrate intake is low, you end up with low glycogen stores.

    To get the process started begin to taper your intake of carbohydrates for a few days during training, while increasing (healthy) fat intake. Embracing this kind of a diet requires a health professional to guide and monitor you, since very low carbohydrate diets can present certain health challenges. Always check with your physician before beginning an exercise program or a new dietary approach.
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    AHealthCorps answered
    We all know that exercise has a range of physical and mental benefits. That’s why kids (and adults) should exercise daily. A new study now suggests that watching nature scenes on video while exercising may offer additional health benefits.

    The Conventry University study published in the International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health asked kids 9 and 10 years old to cycle at a moderate pace for about 15 minutes. In one cycling experience, they viewed a video of a forest track that paced in relationship to their cycling efforts. In another exercise experience, they just cycled without viewing any videos.

    Measurements taken after viewing the video showed that post-activity blood pressure was significantly lower, compared to cycling without watching the simulated forest video. Lower blood pressure is associated with a lower risk of developing heart-related health problems. Experts suggest that it may be worthwhile to expose kids to these green, calming videos while they exercise.