Category: Workouts

Lose It! Weight Loss Challenge

Monday January 9th 
6:30 PM social
$50 Self-guided, $190 Semi-guided, $540 Evolve.
The New Year is just around the corner! Are you looking to create a new you? If you are looking to start your New Year with weight loss as your goal? Then come join fellow members at the Seattle Athletic Club in the 12 week weight loss competition.
Our kickoff social is Monday, January 9th at 6:30 pm. Come into the SAC conference room to meet the other participants, log your official first weigh-in, get assigned a trainer to assist you throughout the competition, and learn more about the next 12 weeks of your personal journey.With three possible levels of participation, this challenge is guaranteed to make you sweat whatever your fitness level may be. If you want to change your support level at any time, just let us know, as we can always bring as much support as you need!

Cycle Workshop

February 6th

Cycle Studio-Please sign up in the Cycle Studio

10:30am-11:30am | Cycle 101: Introduction to Cycle and the Keiser M3 bikes with Jocelyn.

Jocelyn will teach you proper bike setup, hand positions, standing and seated riding positions, and Keiser M3 specifics: what is on the computer display, how to adjust the resistance, RPMs for climbs and flats, and how to measure one’s rate of perceived exertion (RPE), and proper footwear. After the initial set-up, they will take you on a 30-45minute ride incorporating a variety of terrains and drills you may experience in a class.

For more information, please contact our Group Exercise Director, Anna Miller at

Pilates Exercise of the Month: SIDE KICK SERIES: UP/DOWN

PURPOSE: The 2nd exercise of the Side Kick series: this exercise works the hips, buttocks, outer thigh, and stretches your inner thigh muscles.

Set-up : Lie on your side and align your body against the back edge of the mat. Prop your head up on one hand and place the palm of the other hand on the mat in front of you. Position your legs in a 45-degree angle in front of your body. Feet are slightly turned out in a Pilates V.

1. Inhale, lift your top leg straight up to the ceiling and point your toe. Lift your leg only as high as you can manage with it remaining straight.

  1. Exhale, resist gravity, flex your foot, and bring it back down to starting position. Think of reaching and stretching your leg out of your hip.

3. Repeat 5-8 times on each side. Bring your legs back together to prepare for the next exercise in the series, Small Circles.



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If you experience discomfort in your shoulder, wrist or neck, lay your head down on your arm. You can also use a rolled up towel under your neck for added support.

Head to Toe Checklist:

Remain long and lifted in the upper body as you kick your leg up and lengthen it down. Don’t roll your leg inward. Keep a slight turnout in the hip and thigh throughout the exercise. Stabilize your body with the powerhouse. Nothing moves but the kicking leg.Shoulder and hips remain stacked. Think of controlled movements.


Visualization: By the end of the exercise, the kicking leg should feel longer.


Jocelyn Paoli, Pilates Instructor

Group Exercise Class Etiquette

The Seattle Athletic Clubs boasts over 50 group exercise classes a week! Have you tried one yet? As an instructor, I have a short list of suggestions that will make your and the instructor’s experience richer and safer.

  1. Introduce yourself to the instructor before class begins.
  2. Instructors will notice your presence in class, even if you sneak in and go straight to the back row! So, introduce yourself and inform him/her of any injuries you’re dealing with so he/she can be aware of your condition.
  3. Show up on time (means 5 minutes early to set up your equipment). Instructors build their class around a warm-up and a cool-down, and if you miss the warm up you may hurt yourself.
  4. Ask questions!       After class, approach the instructor to ask any questions about an exercise or concept you didn’t understand.       Instructors love to talk shop.
  5. And finally, give feedback! Whether a compliment or a suggestion, an instructor will want to know what you thought. Let his/her manager know what you thought as well because feedback (positive or negative) can only sharpen our awareness and hone our skills to make us better instructors.

We hope to see you in class!

Worksite Warrior Recap – May 2015

Worksite Warrior is a team weight loss competition at the Seattle Athletic Club where local corporate teams of 6+ participants band together for 30 days using a team personal fitness trainer, the group exercise classes and the whole facility to see which team can lose the largest percentage of weight.


This quarter we had two teams Big Fish Game and Open Market participate in our Worksite Warrior competition. We are proud to announce that Open Market (trained by Shay Massey) won the competition losing 2.97% of their total team weight. Even though Open Market won the competition each team had some great individual results which you will see below:


1st Place Team Open Market:

  • 3 teammates were male and 3 teammates were female
  • 66% of them lost over 4.5 lbs in the 4 weeks
  • Their team lost a total of 37.1 lbs in the 4 weeks
  • The largest percentage of body weight lose by a team member was 6.04%
  • The average lost per person was 6.2 lbs


2nd Place Team Big Fish Games:

  • 1 teammate was male and 4 teammates were female
  • 80% of them lost over 3 lbs in the 4 weeks
  • Their team lost a total of 19.6 lbs in the 4 weeks
  • The largest percentage of body weight lose by a team member was 4.3%
  • The average lost per person was 3.9 lbs


If you think your company would be interested in participating in next quarter’s Worksite Warrior competition please contact Fitness Director Jacob Galloway.

Keep Your Piriformis in Good Form.

The piriformis muscle lies deep to the gluteal muscles in the buttocks. It is an important lateral rotator, the position your leg is in while kicking a ball with your instep, and a essential stabilizer of the pelvis. Because of its importance in our mobilization and balance, it is not only used in vigorous exercise and sports, but also in activities such as getting up from a chair or walking. We are constantly putting demands on this muscle, yet because of the depth and location many are unaware they have a tight piriformis.

If this muscle remains tight it can irritate surrounding structures, such as nerves, which may result in pain. This pain can show up as low back pain, buttock pain, or pain running down the back of the leg. Other symptoms may include numbness, tingling, or a decrease in sensation in those areas.

Perpetuating factors include sitting for extended amounts of time and sitting with your legs crossed, quite common with the desk work and travel demands of todayʼs world. Climbing stairs, squatting, or running might exacerbate the discomfort our tight piriformis might be creating. This can be a frustrating cycle… we want to exercise because we sit all day… but when we sit all day, our tight piriformis might make certain exercises uncomfortable.

Talking with your personal trainer, massage therapist, yoga instructor, or another member of your self-care team, can help you build a great plan to keep your piriformis in good form. Static stretching, foam rolling, hydrotherapy, trigger point therapy, and myofascial release, are all great treatments for a tight muscles. Donʼt let your piriformis cause you to lose form, chat with your team and learn what you can do to help it!

Lose It! 2015 Recap

The Seattle Athletic Club just wrapped up another very successful 12 week weight loss competition for 2015. This year we had 24 participants looking to start healthy habits and begin their weight loss journey; 63% of the participants finish the challenge by attending all 12 weekly weigh-ins. Of those that completed the challenge 86% lost weight. Of those that lost weight 85% lost over 5 lbs.

I wanted to take a moment to single out our top finishers for the competition and tell their weight loss transition through their numbers.

1st place Seth Cruse
Seth lost 22.13% of his body weight, decreasing his body fat by 14.04%.
He dropped inches from these main areas: Chest – 6”, Waist – 10” and Thigh – 1.2”.


Before and after photos.
Before and after photos.


2nd place Denise Kilgore

Denise lost 18.41% of her body weight, decreasing her body fat by 14.63%.
She dropped inches from these main areas: Chest – 3”, Waist – 4.7”, Hip – 6.3” and Thigh – 5.1”.

Denise before and after.
Denise before and after.


3rd place Rosie Cruse

Rosie lost 16.74% of her body weight, decreasing her body fat by 5.57%.

She dropped inches from these main areas: Chest – 3.5”, Waist – 4.1”, Hip – 3.4” and Thigh – 2”.


Rosie before and after.
Rosie before and after.


We are proud of all the hard work and dedication from everyone that participated in our competition. Many of our participants had great things to say about their Lose It! experience and how it helped them change their lives.


If you are looking to start a fitness program, please come see any of the fitness staff. Everyone at that Seattle Athletic Club is here to help and assist all members with any fitness endeavor. As you can see, you can be more successful using a structured program and network of people looking to help you out. So, when it comes to your next fitness adventure, come talk to the professionals at the Seattle Athletic Club!


For more information about healthy weight loss, please contact Fitness Director, Jacob Galloway.

Inspirational Member of the Month – Denise Kilgore!

Denise Kilgore has gone through a lot of changes in her life; if you saw her 5 months ago you may not actually recognize who she was. Starting before the New Year, Denise decided she needed to make a change, a change which came in the way of becoming a healthier person. She has always struggled with her weight, so much so that she couldn’t find many pictures to submit for this article because she hated being photographed. After hearing about the Club’s Evolve program, Denise decided she wanted to start the program right away. She started by working with Tom Sheriff three times a week, she did spin every day she could get into the club (which, yes it meant she came in before working out with Tom), she decided she would try a meal delivery option where you are delivered all the ingredients, a recipe and you cook your own fresh food.


Even though Denise works long days sitting at a computer, she told herself that she can still make it into the gym every day and cook her own meals. She has stuck with those things and made it a habit. I can tell you that every day around 6 am Denise will be in the club spinning and around 9 am three times a week she is in here doing her weights. As the week progressed we all saw Denise shrink down as her strength shot through the roof. Half way through her journey she even was able to take off her braces and smile at all she was accomplishing.


Denise has lost over 45 lbs and decreasing her body fat by over 15%. She has lost so much size that she has had to throw out all of her old jeans and shirts and is swimming in her workout clothes. Denise has dropped life changing inches from these main areas: Chest -3”, Waist –4.7”, Hip –6.3” and Thigh –5.1”.  All together Denise lost almost two feet of circumference from her body, she has regained a body weight she hasn’t had since her twenties and has exponentially increased her strength and stamina.


Denise finished second place in our Lose It! weight loss competition and should feel so proud. What I think is amazing about her is that before the competition was over she had already made up her mind that she would be continuing to train with Tom three times a week (she still has her goal of bench pressing a plate on each side of the barbell) because she sees the value in what she has earned and doesn’t want to slow down. The second thing that is amazing about what Denise did is that she didn’t look for a special diet, or try the newest fad in exercise or weight loss; she made up her mind to eat fresh foods, committed herself to getting in her cardio and weights every week and continued on with her life.


It has been a true pleasure to see her transformation unfold before my eyes; all of us at the SAC are excited to see just how far she pushes herself toward her goals.

Denise before
Denise before
Denise after

For more information on weight loss programs or to nominate a Member of the Month, contact SAC’s Fitness Director, at Jacob Galloway.


Most parents know that strength training is an essential component of maximizing their child’s athletic potential but many don’t know when to start said training. When asked this question I like to refer to the ACSM research article that states, “Generally speaking, if children are ready for participation in organized sports or activities — such as Little League baseball, soccer, or gymnastics — then they are ready for some type of strength training.” If you feel your child has the emotional maturity to take part in an organized sport then they are perfectly capable of taking up strength training with a qualified professional.

One concern many have is that strength training will negatively affect bone growth in youth athletes. This is a myth that is taking much too long to go away. There hasn’t been documentation of this actually occurring while there is in fact ample evidence to the contrary. Strength training has been shown to actually increase bone density, peak bone mass and bone strength.

Strength is the only physical attribute that has a direct impact on all other areas of athletic performance and has the highest potential for growth when compared to other qualities such as power and speed. In an article from the Mayo Clinic the author states that when done properly, strength training can:

  • Increase your child’s muscle strength and endurance
  • Help protect your child’s muscles and joints from sports-related injuries
  • Improve your child’s performance in nearly any sport, from dancing and figure skating to football and soccer
  • Develop proper techniques that your child can continue to use as he or she grows older
  • Strengthen your child’s bones

A properly designed program for a youth athlete must be created and executed by a qualified coach and of course I am partial to myself because of my education, credentials, and experience. Currently my youngest client is a 12 year old basketball/football player whose performance has skyrocketed since he started strength training. I have also worked with the Skyline High School Girls Basketball team, the Bellevue High School Track team, and many individual youth athletes from around the area competing in lacrosse, football, basketball, baseball, soccer, and even cheerleading.

I have seen over and over again what strength training can do for a young athlete and have come up with some guidelines that can serve any coach or parent working with young athletes.

General Guidelines for Strength Training Youth Athletes:

1. Master the basics while focusing on proper movement patterns. With young athletes it is best to first master general movement patterns and body weight exercises before moving on to more advanced strength training modalities. Great exercises include: jumping/landing, med-ball throwing, body weight squats, push-ups, pull-ups, and sled pushing/pulling.

2. Use proper loading parameters. Strength training doesn’t always mean loading up a squat bar and going as heavy as possible. As a general rule with young athletes it’s best to stick with body weight exercises or exercises with loads that allow the athlete to complete 8 to 20 repetitions each set. As the athlete advances the intensity of exercises can advance as well.

3. Teach proper force absorption. Learning how to properly land and decelerate will be invaluable in preventing future sports injuries for any athlete. Deceleration is also a crucial factor in agility performance.

4. Don’t specialize too early. Young athletes should build as broad an athletic base as possible in order to maximize athletic potential. Performing only exercises that seem “sport specific” is not an effective way to build an athletic base. While this might make for a good basketball or soccer player now, it will actually do them a disservice for their athletic future. Specializing early is also a great way to burn a kid out on a sport.

5. Make it fun! Strength training should be something that the kids look forward to and enjoy. This is an opportunity to set them up to not only maximize their athletic potential but also create life-long healthy habits. If your kid does not enjoy training they won’t reap maximum benefits and will likely discontinue training at the first opportunity they get.

I started seriously strength training for sports at 15 years old and I only wish I would have started sooner. At that time I started working with a strength coach named Mike Seilo, and I am not exaggerating when I say he changed trajectory of my athletic and eventually my professional career. Strength training with a qualified coach dramatically increased my athletic performance and without Mike I don’t think I would have gone on to compete in track and field at the collegiate level. Outside of improving my sport performance Mike influenced me to become strength coach and work with young athletes. Mike’s influence on me went way beyond sport performance and I can only hope to have the same influence on kids during my career.

Under the right supervision strength training can be a huge benefit to any young athlete. Not only will they improve athletically, they may learn some valuable lessons that serve them inside and outside of the gym as well as develop life-long personal relationships. If you have a child involved in athletics I highly recommend you find a qualified coach and get their strength training career underway.

If you have any questions regarding youth strength training please contact PFT Tom Sheriff CSCS (
206-443-1111 ext. 292.

Seattle Bicycle Laws and Regulations: What You Need to Know

This upcoming May 15th is Bike to Work Day in Seattle! We would love to encourage everyone to participate in this fun event which promotes a healthy active lifestyle. With over 240 miles of bike trails surrounding the emerald city, we live in a great place to commute in an eco friendly and healthy way. In fact, of the 25 largest US cities, Seattle has the largest percentage of people commuting by bicycle! Let’s keep Seattle at number 1! This being said we would like to educate everyone on the rules and regulations surrounding Seattle biking so your commute can be as efficient and safe as possible



  • Every rider must wear a helmet regardless of age
  • Every person operating a bicycle on a roadway at a speed slower than the normal and reasonable flow traffic should ride as near to the right side of the lane as is safe.
  • It may be appropriate to deviate while preparing to make or while making turning movements, or while overtaking and passing another bicycle or vehicle proceeding in the same direction.
  • A person operating a bicycle on a one way street that has two or more marked traffic lanes may ride as near to the left side lane as is safe.
  • A person operating a bicycle upon a roadway may utilize the shoulder of the roadway or any specifically designated bicycle lane if such exists.


  • Persons operating bicycles upon a roadway or sidewalk shall not ride more than two abreast except on paths or parts of roadways set aside for the exclusive use of bicycles.


  • Given continuously during the last one hundred feet traveled by the bicycle before initiation of a turn, unless during the last one hundred feet both hands are needed to control or operate the bicycle.
  • Left turn: left hand and arm extended horizontally beyond the side of the bicycle.
  • Right Turn: left hand and arm extended upward beyond the side of the bicycle, or right hand and arm extended horizontally to the right side of the bicycle.
  • Stop or decrease speed: Left hand and arm extended downward beyond the side of the bicycle.


  • No person operating a bicycle shall carry any package, bundle or article which prevents him from keeping at least one hand upon the handlebars, nor shall he operate the bicycle at any time without keeping at least one hand upon the handlebars.


  • Every bicycle, when in use during the hours of darkness, shall be equipped with a lamp on the front, which shall emit a white light visible from a distance of at least five hundred feet to the front, and with a red reflector on the seat of a type approved by the State Commission on Equipment, which shall be visible at all distances up to six hundred feet to the rear when directly in front of lawful lower beams of head lamps on a motor vehicle. A lamp emitting a red light visible from a distance of five hundred feet to the rear may be used in addition to the red reflector.
  • No person shall use a bicycle to carry more persons at one time than the number for which it is designed and equipped, except that a person eighteen years of age or older may carry a child securely attached to his person.


  • A person operating a bicycle across a roadway upon and along a crosswalk shall have all the rights and duties applicable to a pedestrian under the same circumstances


  • Every person operating a bicycle upon a sidewalk or public path shall yield the right-of-way to any pedestrian thereon, and shall give an audible signal before overtaking and passing any pedestrian.


With spring and summer approaching, it’s the perfect time to get out and enjoy the weather while being active. Help us keep Seattle the best bike commuter city in the US. See what it’s all about Friday May, 15th, 2015.

For more information check out: