April 2016
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Welcome to the Ballard Health Club Newsletter. We value your membership at BHC and want to keep you informed of what's going on at the club.

We look forward to staying in touch! 

-The BHC Team

Friendly Competition

Have you ever worked out by yourself and really struggled through your workout, but then did the same workout with a friend and performed much better? If you said yes, the scientific explanation behind your motivational gain is called the Kohler Effect. As Dr. Cedric X. Bryant, the Chief Science Officer of the American Council on Exercise (ACE), explains, "...[the Kohler Effect] occurs when an individual's performance increases when working with someone they perceive as better than themselves. This motivation gain is even greater when individuals are put in a team setting and the outcome of the performance is dependent on the weaker individual..."

If you usually workout alone, try making friends at the gym and outside the gym that you perceive as being more physically fit than you. It's easy since you already have a gym membership, but it can be even easier if you attend our Group Fitness Classes in Studio X and Studio Y. Assuredly, you will find someone in one of our classes that can push you to that next level, whether it's the instructor themselves or another member in the class.

We also offer Friendly Fridays after 6 PM, which means you can bring a friend in to the club for free on Fridays at or after 6 PM as long as they have their photo ID. Your friends can help you stay consistent and also help you push through plateaus! Our Certified Personal Trainers on staff are always available for Fitness Training and Personal Training appointments, as well. If classes don't work for you or you can't find a friend to bring in on a Friday, sign up with one of our trainers and they'll be sure to motivate you and push you further.

Matt Bruner
BHC Trainer

Class Changes and Additions

Tues 12-1pm Les Mills BodyPump™ 
with Allison
Used to be Bootcamp

Tues 1:30-2:30pm Chair Yoga
with Louise
Used to be Silver Sneakers
Tues 5:15-6:15pm Les Mills BodyPump™  
with Roxy
Used to be Body Circuit

Mon/Wed/Fri 11am-12pm Les Mills BodyPump™  
with Tina
New Class and Times! 
Thurs 6:15-7:15pm Bollywood
with Sangeeta
Used to be Zumba

Sunday 5-6pm Les Mills BodyPump™  
with Roxy
New Class and Time!
Sunday 6-7pm Spartan Training Class

2  4   H O U R   A C C E S S

Phase 2 Starting April 15th!
Check-in at 4am on Weekdays and 6am on Weekends.
More details in "From the Owner" below.

Introducing: Outdoor Boot Camps at BHC!
May 1st BHC is heading outdoors!

Beginning May 1st, BHC is partnering with Fresh Air Boot Camp - an outdoor year round boot camp class which is run by one of our own personal trainers, Ivonne DePauli.

We are excited to be able to offer our members an outdoor exercise experience close by at Golden Gardens and Green Lake parks!

Fresh Air Boot Camp classes are full body cardio and strength training workouts that incorporate elements found at the parks such as stairs, benches, logs, sand and trails. Mixing workouts with nature can be an exhilarating way to enjoy the beauty of the northwest!

Fresh Air Boot Camp Schedule and Location:
Golden Gardens Mon & Wed at 9:00 - 10:00 a.m. and Saturday at 8:00-9:00 a.m. Green Lake Tue, Thr & Fri at 6:00 -7:00 am.

BHC / Fresh Air Boot Camp Memberships will be available as of May 1st.  Email fab@ballardhealthclub.com for more information or pick up an information sheet at the front desk.
Upgrading to PLUS Membership

As you are aware by now, BHC requires a PLUS membership to attend any of the 80+ classes BHC offers weekly (other than Silver Sneakers and Chair Yoga).

For a monthly renewing member a PLUS membership is $10 more a month than a regular membership and a PLUS Yearly membership is $100 more than a regular yearly membership.

If you were a monthly renewing member before March 1st, you have been grandfathered in to your regular rate with a PLUS status for classes until September. If you have a yearly membership established before March 1st, your membership is PLUS for the remainder of that membership.

As a monthly renewing member, you may let us know now that you want to have your membership automatically upgraded to a PLUS membership in September. To do this, download the BHC Membership Upgrade form by clicking HERE or pick up a form at the Club. Once you have filled out the form, please drop it off at the front desk at BHC or scan and email to memberaccounts@ballardhealthclub.com.

Member Spotlight:
Pavel Babushka

How long have you been a member at Ballard Health Club?
I have been a member with BHC since moving to Seattle in mid-September of 2015.

What is your favorite piece of equipment or exercise to do in the gym?
Hmmmm, tough one! I love the squat racks and all the Rogue equipment that's available, but if I had to pick, my workhorse is just a plain old barbell and some weights.

Why do you work out?
I work out for the pursuit of strength.  I think working out and lifting weights can provide a unique metric for personal progress/growth that you don't often get in other realms of your life.  If you can lift 200 pounds this week, and 210 pounds next week, you've gotten measurably stronger by a finite amount.  I enjoy tracking that type of progress.

What do you do to work out?
My workouts are centered around powerlifting, which is a type of exercise that focuses on lifting the most weight in three exercises: the barbell back squat, the flat bench press, and the deadlift.  I am a competitive powerlifter, so my training revolves around trying to increase my strength in those three lifts.  I train more than just those obviously, but the end goal is a higher total in the squat, bench, and deadlift.

What in the gym has worked for you in attaining your goals?

Having the appropriate training equipment is paramount to successful training in powerlifting.  A squat rack, barbell, and bench press are the minimum pieces of equipment required.  When I joined BHC, the gym didn't have competition size bench for bench press and Pat, the owner, was very receptive to my (and other's) recommendations for one and eventually purchased one for the gym. This was certainly helpful to my training here as I was used to certain equipment from my old gym before I moved to Seattle. The training environment is also nice, as are the staff.

Why do you choose to work out at BHC? (instead of another gym)
It's absolutely unbeatable value for money when it comes to gyms in Seattle (shhhh, don't tell anyone). Great facilities, friendly staff, attentive owner, and good equipment.  As for powerlifting-specific gyms, Seattle is extremely lacking, but BHC does a great job accommodating many types of lifters, powerlifting included, which allows me to pursue what I love doing in the gym!

Friendly Fridays

Every Friday after 6pm is FRIENDLY FRIDAYS! Bring a friend to workout at Ballard Health Club - just ask them to bring picture ID! Friend must be accompanied by a member and we will waive the drop-in fee.

BHC Hoops Club

Hoops Club is still meeting every Saturday at 3pm. Add your name to the sign up sheet at the front desk for more information on each week's game.

*Hoops Club will NOT be meeting 4/30 due to a previously scheduled event.


The Body Fat test truck will again make a stop at Ballard Health Club on Sunday, May 1st.

If you've ever wanted to get started on a plan to make real progress, or want to get back on track, getting your body fat tested in a hydrostatic tank is a great way to precisely benchmark your fitness. Getting dunked takes just 10 minutes, and afterward, you'll get a detailed report to keep, showing:
  • Your fat and fat-free body mass, as percentages and in actual weight
  • How much fat, if any, you need to lose to achieve your desired body composition
  • How many calories per day you burn without exercising-unique to you
    • How many calories you burn from different exercises-again, specifically for your body
  • Where you are on a scale of ideal body fat for your age and gender
  • Your history, if you've been tested before
The Body Fat Test truck will be at Ballard Health Club Sunday, May 1st. Call us at 206-760-4882 or stop by the front desk to make an appointment. This is for both members and non-members. $49 for initial test. $35 for re-test. Pay at time of testing.

Questions about the Body Fat Test >
check here

Suncadia Spring Retreats SOLD OUT

Spring to Life
Spring Retreat #1 at Suncadia
April 29 - May 1 

Yoga Immersion
Spring Retreat #2 at Suncadia 
May 13-May 15

Zoom In On Health: Osteoporosis

This month in our new "Zoom in on Health" series we'll be talking about osteoporosis, which is a condition resulting from a decrease in bone mass density, where the bone microstructure is disrupted and the proteins in the bones become altered. Osteoporosis commonly affects the neck of the femur (thigh bone) and the lumbar (lower back) vertebrae. Since these structures are considered part of the core, a decrease in bone mineral density places the core in a weakened state and it becomes more susceptible to injury, such as a fracture.

The primary form of osteoporosis is associated with normal aging, and is largely a result of a lower production of estrogen and progesterone. There is also a secondary form of osteoporosis, which is caused by certain medical conditions or medications, including alcohol abuse and smoking, that can disrupt normal bone reformation.

New bone formation (remodeling) occurs as the result of stress being placed on the musculoskeletal system. To maintain constant remodeling, people must remain active enough to ensure adequate stress being placed on their bodies. This is why resistance training and weight-bearing exercises are so important for maintaining bone density. Thankfully, this also means that the effects of osteoporosis can be slowed, or even reversed, by exercise. Resistance Training, for example, has been shown to improve bone mineral density by up to 5%.

However, higher intensities (with weight at 75-85% of your one rep max) are needed to stimulate bone formation. Since it generally takes about 6 months of consistent exercise at these relatively high intensities before any effect on bone mass is realized, exercise routines for those with osteoporosis should combine resistance training with flexibility, core and balance training to enhance proprioception and prevent falls.

Need help knowing where to start? Try booking a complimentary Fitness Training appointment with one of BHC's amazing trainers and have them put together a personalized routine to suit your needs.

Roxy Turner
BHC Personal Trainer 
Club Improvements

The new custom made speed bag stand has been completed and is now in use in our boxing room. The noise produced from the use of the speed bag with this new stand is greatly reduced from the prior setup to the point we can use the speed bag anytime. We will eventually bolt the stand to the floor and add sound proof insulation to the room to reduce the noise output even more.
Unilateral Leg Workout from Aimee

Keeping the legs strong is important for function. We all have different goals for our life. If you are planning some hiking or running as the weather changes and gets nicer, strengthening your legs will be helpful for your training. As we age we are less likely to engage the glute muscles when walking. This leads to muscle imbalances that can cause falls. For this reason, it is important to keep the legs strong throughout life. The following leg workout is beneficial for all levels of training and will work the hamstrings, glutes, and quads focusing on each leg separately.  

Perform 4 sets of each exercise for 8-12 repetitions before moving on to the next exercise.
Kettlebell One Legged Deadlift
> Hold a kettlebell by the handle in one or two hands. Stand on one leg, on the same side that you hold the kettlebell.
> Keeping  that knee slightly bent, perform a stiff legged deadlift by bending at the hip, extending your free leg behind you for balance.
> Keep your back flat by having your chest forward and squeezing your shoulder blades. 
> Continue lowering the kettlebell(s) until you are parallel to the ground, and then return to the upright position.
TRX Pistol Squats
> Extend the TRX straps long and hold on to the handles facing the TRX.
> Extend one leg forward and squat with the leg that you are standing on.
> Keep your chest up and standing knee over your ankle.
> Stand back up pushing the heel through the ground to activate the glute.
> Keep leg extended in front of you through entire exercise if balance permits.
> Finish all repetitions on one side and then complete on the other side.

Reverse Lunge
> Hold dumbbells in both hands and let rest at sides during the entire exercise.
> Start with legs shoulder width apart and then step back into a lunge position. Be sure to have a wide lunge stance.  Your lunge should be deep enough that knee almost touches the ground.
> Step back into starting position.
>Repeat on same side until repetitions are complete. Then complete on the other leg.  

Aimee Miller
BHC Trainer

Nutritional 'Did You Know'?

Did you know calorie counting is not very accurate? In fact, when tracking one's intake there is a 25% discrepancy. Here are five reasons why:

1. The amounts of calories given on food labels and food databases are based on averages. For example, if you are trying to figure out how many calories are in a medium apple, it may say 93 calories in a database. Well, a medium apple could contain as little as 83 calories and as high as 116 calories depending on the variety and ripeness. In addition, the FDA permits inaccuracies up to 20% because food companies use several different methods to estimate calories. Calculating calories from the macronutrients listed on a food label and comparing it to the calories listed is one way to see the inaccuracies (but even this calculation is flawed).

2. We don't always absorb all of the nutrients in the foods we eat. If you are rushed and eat under stress, digestion may become slightly inhibited by your central nervous system. This can happen quite often if you think about how many times you eat on-the-go or while multi-tasking.

3. Your individual microbiome can determine how well you absorb calories. People with more Firmicutes bacteria absorb an average of 150 more calories per day than people with more Bacteroidetes bacteria.

4. How we prepare foods can also enhance or decrease absorption. Cooking, chopping and blending foods generally make the calories more available for absorption. Food labels and trackers don't always reflect that. Conversely, calories are generally less absorbed when they contain more fiber and/or are closer to their natural state. For example, the fat and calories in whole peanuts are usually less absorbed than in peanut butter.

5. People are not very good at estimating portions. Studies have shown people mis-measure portions 2/3 of the time. I remember a study done while I was attending Bastyr between Nutrition and ND students. The goal was to learn who were better at estimating the calorie content in food. Turns out we all measured inaccurately. Even trained nutritionists underestimate calories in foods by an average of 30 percent.

In conclusion, when you're counting calories or tracking your intake understand that it is not a perfect method. These strategies can be helpful when people overeat significantly as well as learning about the estimates of energy and nutrient values in foods. However, know that they aren't exact measurements and calibrate you're eating according to how you feel.

Stephanie Gray
BHC Nutritional Coach

BHC Parking

With all of the BHC parking areas, it can be confusing to know when each one is open and available for use for BHC members working out at the club or going to a class. To help with this, we have prepared a printable BHC Parking Map at


80 Classes a Week for All Levels
Along with Spring comes change and growth. We look forward to helping you facilitate your health goals in both of our class studios.

Studio X has classes for every person and for every level that will boost your endurance, develop your strength and get you started on your goals. In Studio Y we have classes that give you an opportunity to develop your core and connect your mind and body. Both studios offer a variety of formats to provide you with great workouts led by experienced instructors.

Classes are motivating, fun, and challenging for all fitness levels. We're offering more Body Pump classes that will strengthen and tone your major muscles. On Sundays we have African Dance that will improve cardiovascular endurance and increase your joy. There are over 25 yoga classes weekly that increases flexibility, as well as a Kung Fu class on Thursday evenings to help lower those stress levels. You have over 80 opportunities to create a lifestyle that keeps you healthy today and into your future.

Happy Spring Everyone, I look forward to seeing you in class.

Karen Gamble
BHC Class Director

From the Owner
Moving to 24-hour access is quite a leap for us at BHC and we are doing it in phases to make the transition smoother and more manageable.

In last month's newsletter - we announced that "Phase 1" would start on March 7th. Phase 1 included extending the front desk hours from 10pm to 11pm during the week -and- anyone checked-in before that time could stay and work out as long as they want after the front desk closes. This first phase has been a hit with many members, especially on weekends, when the front desk closes at 8pm and people want to work out past that time.

I am happy to announce that "Phase 2" starts on April 15. Phase 2 includes allowing access to the club starting at 4am on weekdays and 6am on weekends. Our front desk will open at it's regular time of 5:30am on weekdays and 8am on weekends. This means that members coming to the club before the front desk opens will gain access through our electronically controlled door that is about mid-way down the breezeway. A light will be on above the door to show it's ready for use.

Gaining access through the electronic door requires the member to do a self check-in just outside the door entrance. If there are no issues with the membership status, the door will open. However, if there are problems with the membership status, the door will remain closed.

Since there are no front desk personnel to help prior to the front desk opening - you may want to check to see if your account is in good standing before you attempt the self check-in system. To check to see if your account is good to go - use the BHC electronic membership card that is available at www.ballardhealthclub.com/ecard. If a green stripe with "VERK OUT!" appears, everything is OK. A red stripe appears if there are any problems with the membership status, along with the reason the red stripe was triggered.

By the way, the BHC electronic membership card is designed to be used on a phone to check-in at the front desk instead of using a regular membership card.

There have been a great many details to work out as we move toward the full 24 hour access for the Club. With that said, we look forward to providing this exciting new benefit for our members.


Pat Gilbrough
Owner and General Manager
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