Get fit for spring and summer – and for life!

Shorts and swimsuit season will be here before you know it! Fortunately, there’s still time to shed those extra pounds and get toned up for spring and summer. When you fit into those “skinny jeans” or reach that “ideal” number on the scale, though, will you really be “fit” and healthy?

  • Wednesday, April 23, 2008 8:00pm
  • Life

Shorts and swimsuit season will be here before you know it! Fortunately, there’s still time to shed those extra pounds and get toned up for spring and summer. When you fit into those “skinny jeans” or reach that “ideal” number on the scale, though, will you really be “fit” and healthy?

Not necessarily, according to a new study from the Mayo Clinic, which shows that even if you have a “normal” body weight, it doesn’t always equate to a “healthy” weight. According to the study, more than half of American adults considered to have normal body weight (known as Body Mass Index or BMI) have high body fat percentages — greater than 20 percent for men and 30 percent for women. This puts them at risk for metabolic abnormalities that lead to diabetes and, eventually, to heart disease.

“When people think about being fit and healthy, it’s important to think about more than just what the scale says or how you look on the outside,” explains Jackie Siochi, Snap Fitness owner in Redmond. “People need to think about fitness in a very broad sense, which includes managing your weight, but also developing aerobic endurance, muscular strength and endurance, flexibility, and a healthy body fat ratio.”

The study’s findings, which were presented in April at the American College of Cardiology’s Annual meeting, show that just because your weight may be normal for your size, it doesn’t mean you aren’t at risk for health problems.

The lead researcher, Dr. Francisco Lopez-Jimenez, a cardiologist with the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn., said that even normal-weight people should exercise and eat a healthful diet to reduce their level of fat , especially belly fat.

“Whether your goal is to lose weight, get rid of that pot belly, get stronger or even train for a marathon, a great place to start is to have a personal fitness consultation,” says Siochi. “It will help you understand your starting point, and where you need to focus your energy in order to truly get fit and meet your goals.”

Snap Fitness offers new members a free $100 personal fitness consultation that includes a body composition analysis to determine their lean-to-fat ratio. The assessment also measures their strength, flexibility and cardiovascular health and then calculates a “FitScore” rating of their overall fitness. Members can use their score to compare themselves to other men or women in their age group, and watch their score improve as they increase their fitness.

To help maximize regular exercise as part of a weight management plan, Snap Fitness starts every member with an equipment tutorial and an introduction to a “Basic 8” total-body workout that takes only 30 minutes. A free Online Training Center also helps members create a customized workout routine, stay motivated and track their progress.

“With all of our tools and support, we not only help people get in shape for shorts and swimsuit season, but fit for a long, healthy life,” says Siochi.

To schedule a free tour, call 425.605.2241 or visit them online at

– Tavi Siochi, Snap Fitness.

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