Archive for the ‘Fitness Tips’ Category

The Glutes are King!

By Shawn Hunsberger

Given that it’s the largest group of muscles in the human body, our rear ends are constantly on display.  Some are flat and skinny, while others are bulgy, and jiggle.   We even compare them to fruit – apples, pears, and watermelon.  What we should all be working toward, however, is a toned, perky backside that is shaped like a granny smith apple.   But the benefits of having strong glutes extend beyond a great appearance; they protect us from injury.

The glutes serve to stabilize our hips so that the core muscles can function properly.   For instance, it is not uncommon for us sit for six or more hours per day, resulting in tight hip flexors, and flabby lower abs.  Upon standing and walking, strong, properly functioning glutes will help stretch out the hip flexors, allowing the core to assume correct function.  Hip instability and imbalance will cause the hip flexors to remain tight, often resulting in lower back pain, and weak abdominals.

The glutes also protect against ACL (anterior cruciate ligament) injury, a ligament found in the front of knee.  Women are six times more susceptible to ACL injury than men.  The next time you do a bodyweight squat (without holding on to anything), take notice of your knees.  Are they moving straight forward, or are they buckling inward toward one another?  If it’s the latter, you might be at risk for tearing your ACL.  Well-trained glutes allow for better control when squatting, and in general, are the ultimate protector of the knee.

The take-home message?  Your glutes support every movement you make.  Keeping them strong can help protect you from injury, and eliminate joint pain in the ankles, knees, back, and neck.  Plus…you get to show-off a great looking backside!

What’s for dinner? Try this healthy Tilapia recipe tonight!

Tilapia with Tomatoes and Capers
by Katie Hunsberger

Tilapia is such a mild and tender fish, it is so versatile!  I am a huge fan of capers as well, so the combination here is just perfect! You can also take this recipe to the grill once summer arrives and you don’t want to turn your oven on.  Serve with a side of wild rice and broccoli for a complete meal.  This is so easy, you’ll be done in about 30 min.

4 Tilapia filets (skin and bones removed)
3 Tablespoons of Capers
1 Yellow onion cut in half and sliced
1 28oz can of whole tomatoes
1 Tablespoon Herbs de Provance
Salt and Pepper

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.  Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil.  Spread out the sliced onion and capers.  Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper.  With clean hands, toss to combine.  Place the fish fillets on top of the mixture and add salt and pepper to the fish.  Quarter the whole tomatoes and place around the fish.  Sprinkle everything with the Herbs de Provance.  Take another sheet of aluminum foil and place on top, and fold the edges together, creating a “pouch”.  Place in oven and bake for 25 min. or until fish is tender and flakes easily.  Remove from oven and allow to rest for 5 min. before serving.

Tilapia with Tomatoes and Capers

Aging and Exercise

Aging Suit on the Today Show

Did you know that maintaining key elements of fitness such as flexibility (touching your toes), balance (standing on one leg) and cardiovascular fitness are essential to aging well?  If you can’t do these things now, you might want to try.  Gaining flexibility and strength as well as losing weight becomes increasingly difficult with age.  If you are interested in maintaining any level of activity as you age such as golf or biking, think about incorporating functional fitness into your routine.  Things like squats, toe touches, getting up and down from the floor, standing on one leg, etc.  These small things can make a world of difference when you are 70.  It’s never too late to plan ahead.  Any of our personal trainers at Phoenix Fitness would be happy to help!

What is PowerTap Bike Training?

What is PowerTap?

PowerTap is the sensor or gauge used to measure your Power. Power is the amount of energy used in a given period of time and is measured as a Watt. As a point of reference, 1 horsepower is equal to 746 Watts.  Some professional cyclists can sustain 400+ Watts for 30 minutes. PowerTaps provide an objective measurement or real output that allows training progress to be tracked very simply – something that is more difficult when using, for example, a heart rate monitor alone – basically they monitor power when cycling.  The PowerTap does not change the basics of training; it allows you to quantify it. Training with a PowerTap makes it easy to identify gains and losses in fitness. Overtime, you can literally watch the changes and maximize training efficiency.

The Phoenix Fitness PowerTap program follows a progressive periodization schedule that will get you Fitter, a frame of reference for getting Faster and a measuring tool for going Further by increasing endurance, developing muscle mass and creating a solid foundation for you to build on.  Whether your goals are to achieve weight loss, a new level of fitness or peak performance, participating in this program will help you achieve your ideal fitness level and goals. PowerTap is suitable for all fitness levels and goals.

The first thing every person needs to do is a PowerTap test, which is a 20 minute time trail test. From this test we will be able to calculate the student’s personal Zones 1-5. Each bike has a computer on it that reads personal watts (power), calories burned (Kilojoules), Heart Rate (everyone will wear a heart monitor), and Cadence (revolutions per minute).

Learn more at

Why Train with Power?

One of the premier cutting-edge training tools for performance minded cyclists and athletes. Just remember it all comes down to balancing how much work you do with your body’s response. Having a constant measure of power helps you:

  • Establish your baseline fitness.
  • Accurately measure even the smallest fitness gains.
  • Quantify intensity, duration and frequency – instead of guessing.
  • Prevent over training.
  • Accurately measure energy use for nutrition planning.
  • Pace properly for time trials or set yourself up for a successful run.
POWER (watts) =TORQUE (how hard you pedal)


CADENCE (how fast you pedal)

Love this newsletter from the Eat Clean Diet Website

Here are 10 reasons to get to the gym today!  And if that’s not enough, ask about our December membership special.

To see the full newsletter, click here. 

1. Decrease your risk of heart disease through exercise by increasing blood flow around the heart and raising your level of HDL (or “good”) cholesterol. Heart disease is the leading cause of death for North American women, so get active to avoid becoming a statistic!

2. Exercise boosts your immune system response by producing cells that attack bacteria, so you don’t have to fear cold and flu season.

3. Endorphins produced by physical activity have been shown to effectively improve your mood and decrease incidences of depression. Exercise is important not only for your physical health, but also for your mental wellbeing!

4. Your lung capacity can increase with regular exercise, so workouts are important if you suffer from breathing difficulties or conditions such as asthma.

5. Ladies, listen up – exercise can reduce your risk of breast cancer by up to 60%! Since many breast tumors thrive on estrogen, and estrogen can be stored in body fat, reducing the amount of fat your body stores will help protect you.

6. Exercise alleviates menstrual cramps, so hop on the treadmill next time you’re feeling discomfort.

7. A combination of exercise, proper nutrition and hydration helps improve digestive health and keeps things moving in the right direction. So if you work out regularly and follow the Eat-Clean Diet® principles your colon will thank you!

8. Regular strength training promotes more efficient transportation of calcium through your system, which means stronger bones and a decreased risk of osteoporosis!

9. Reduce your likelihood of developing joint pain with some cardio: aerobic exercise can thicken cartilage in your joints, which then acts as a cushion to prevent pain from wear and tear.

10. Last but not least, and a cause very dear to me – exercise can reduce your risk of diabetes. Exercise causes the body to process glucose faster, which lowers blood sugar and improves insulin sensitivity, so people with type 2 diabetes can benefit from a regular exercise routine.

Phoenix Fitness is a health club, gym and fitness center just outside of Aspen Colorado in the town of Basalt, CO. Phoenix Fitness provides personal trainers, weight training, strength training, sport specific training, spin classes, bike and cycling training.

Phoenix Fitness center provides indoor physical fitness to residents  of the Roaring Fork Valley and Aspen Valley including the surrounding towns of Aspen, Woody Creek, Snowmass, Carbondale and Basalt, Colorado

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Phoenix Fitness
35 Park Ave. Ste 150
Basalt, CO 81621