Holiday shopping is in full swing and sometimes it is so hard to think of good presents for all the wonderful people in your life. What could be better than giving your loved ones the gift of good health?
PEAC is here to help - here is a simple fitness and health related gift you can give your loved ones this year:
A PEAC Gift Card- What could be better than giving the loved ones in your life full access to our facility?!
This year when you buy a PEAC gift card you can get an additional bonus gift card-
For every $100 you’ll get an extra $10 gift card.
For every $250 you’ll get a $30 gift card,
And for every $500 gift card you’ll get a $75 gift card.
Give to those in your life and keep a little extra for yourself. Our gift cards are such a wonderful gift to give because of how much you can get out of it!
They can be used for:
-Trial memberships- bring those in your life who have been skeptical of going to a gym and show them how amazing our facility is and the awesome community we have!
-Massages- all by our wonderful, fully trained massage therapists
-Programs/workshops we offer- we offer hundreds of workshops some that offer a deep dive into various parts of fitness and plenty that are outside of just regular fitness.
-Personal training -What’s better than one-on-one, personalized, fitness and health instruction!!
Not to mention full access to our track, basketball court, pickleball court, hundreds of group exercise classes and smoothie bar! You can purchase a gift card at any time right here!
****The bonus gift card offer is valid until 12/24.
The Holidays are just around the corner but that doesn’t mean you have to sacrifice your health to enjoy the holidays. There are so many ways to take your holiday meal up a notch to make it taste good AND be good for your health!
Whether you are trying to eat in a more health-conscious way or you deal with health problems that affect your diet, here are a few healthy switches you can make this holiday season from the advice of some of our very own staff!
Betty Ivins- PERSONAL TRAINER- HEALTHY EATING GURU
Betty Ivins is a personal trainer at PEAC and is known for her exceptional healthy eating habits. Not only does she actively keep a bulletin board at PEAC with healthy recipes, we recently did a story on her getting her kitchen renovated and how she continued to eat healthy with no kitchen!
Betty is excellent at taking making indulgent recipes that are still good for your health. A few examples she sent our way:
Mini Sweet Potato Bites
Maple Turkey Bacon Wrapped Brussel Sprouts. (Pictured above)
Brittany Thatcher - PEAC marketing assistant - GLUTEN-FREE
Brittany Thatcher is our marketing assistant here at PEAC and in charge of our social media. She is also a yoga teacher. After going through her pregnancy, she noticed that her body could no longer tolerate gluten. She went gluten free and has never felt better.
This holiday season she was most worried about being able to enjoy stuffing and desserts because of her gluten intolerance! After a quick trip to Trader joes she was very happy to see the variety of options they offered. She was able to pick up gluten free brownie mix and through some help from Betty she found two great recipes for an additional gluten free dessert and gluten free stuffing:
Gluten Free Pumpkin Angel Food Cake
Easy Gluten Free Stuffing (pictured below)
CONNIE CIFELLI- WHOLE FOODS PLANT-BASED DIET
Connie Cifelli works at our front desk here at PEAC along with being an instructor. After three scares with breast cancer she decided to make some serious lifestyle changes in the name of her health. She switched to a completely plant-based diet sticking solely to whole foods (not processed) and foods without animal products.
For Thanksgiving, Connie makes a large variety of sides and a Lentil Loaf as her main course. “I make lots of sides that do not include any animal products, that includes dairy and butter etc. I still cook turkey for Thanksgiving for the members who are not plantbased. For my daughter and myself to replace the turkey, I will make a lentil loaf (meatless meatloaf), a stuffed acorn squash or vegan butternut squash risotto.”
Here is a list of her full thanksgiving meal:
Butternut Squash and Pumpkin Soup
Garlic Mashed potatoes
Roasted Butternut Squash brussels sprouts with pecans and cranberries
Fennel Orange and Pomegranate Salad
Vegan Pumpkin Pie (made with pumpkin, cashews, maple syrup and pumpkin pie spice)
Traditional Pumpkin Pie for the non vegans
Connie was kind enough to pass along a recipe for a Lentil Loaf. (pictured below)
Whether you are trying to be a little more health-concious or dealing with various health problems that affect your diet, we hope this inspired you to have a very happy and healthy Thanksgiving this year!
Happy Thanksgiving from the entire PEAC team.
October is Breast Cancer Awareness month and we’ve been celebrating here at PEAC with a variety of classes and events to bring awareness to this cause. We have a few members and staff that have been affected by breast cancer in different ways so we wanted to do something special to commemorate those that have passed and support those who are fighting.
The BCRC helps women affected by breast cancer by answering the tough questions and decision-making that may arise during this time. They also help provide support through mentoring, fitness and wellness activities, transportation to treatment and much more.
Their center is located on a peaceful nature preserve minutes from downtown Princeton and is a unique non-clinical environment. They are also dedicated to bringing awareness and understanding of the disease to the community.
Here are a few stats about the impact they have had:
In 2018 they:
We are honored to be presenting them with a check today, thanks to the generosity of all of our members! We present them with this check in remembrance of a dear member, Kay Hutchison, who sadly passed away from Breast cancer. With your help, during this month we have raised $1425. Thanks again for all of your support!
1 Year Anniversary of losing 100 lbs.
It's been one year since our member Jude Martino-Ciafano lost 100 lbs. Yes you read that right, 100 lbs!
This was no easy feat- a committed member of PEAC since 1997 Jude has always been an avid member of our gym. It wasn't until she saw a fellow member who had lost significant weight that she was pointed in the right direction which would help her lose this weight.
With the help of Dr. Chung at Capital Health and the employees at PEAC she learned a lot about her body, developed a strict diet with her doctor and stuck to it. On Sept 22 2018 she hit her goal of losing 100 lbs and for the last year she has maintained this incredible achievement. We caught up with Jude to congratulate her on this incredible achievement and to see how her journey has been in the last year as she has kept this weight off.
How are you feeling 1 year after this incredible achievement? Physically? Mentally? Emotionally?
About the same as I did last year! I really want to help others that are struggling to lose weight and it's why I want to put my story out there and celebrate this one year anniversary.
What advice would you give to someone who is struggling to lose weight?
First, I would say to talk to your doctor about it. I also highly recommend Dr. Chung at Capital Health and her metabolic weight loss program.
Are you still following the same techniques/diet plan? Has anything changed in the last year or have you learned anything new to help you continue on this journey?
Yes, I'm following the same diet plan. One important thing I learned in the last year is that I know which foods are my triggers that I stay away from and I know what foods not to eat. Some of these things are chocolate and blue corn tortilla chips because once I start eating them, I can't stop so I just can't trust myself to eat them. I notice that when I begin to eat these things or if I'm around buffet style or family style meals, it brings me back to some of my old habits of not being able to stop so I just simply stay away from them. Believe it or not I eat pretty much the same thing every day to be in my safety zone so I could make it through the first year. I remind myself "Is the food in control or am I in control?"
I learned through the program that you had to have 4 oz of protein and 4-5 vegetables. That has worked for me but I was able to find out for my body and my metabolism which foods I should stay away from which are white potatoes, sweet potatoes, red beans, black beans- a lot of starchy things- my body cannot metabolize these things. I also can't eat wheat, gluten, grains- they make my body retain water. I found all of this out through my own trial and error.
One of the most important things I learned in particular is the importance of water! You can't lose weight without drinking enough water because the water breaks down the protein that your'e taking in. A lot of people think you only need 64 oz of water a day but the true rule is half of your weight in water. So if you weigh 200 lbs, you need to take in 100 oz of water a day. And when you're taking in all of that water, you need to take in electrolytes too because that water is flushing everything out of you and it's flushing your electrolytes out of you too. So you really need something like a propel or a vitamin water zero to replenish those electrolytes, especially if you're working out.
I also learned the proper amount of calories I needed to be just at rest, and the maximum amount of calories I can take in while I'm exercising so that I don't gain. I learned a lot of this through a nutritionist in the program.
What do you think made you break some of your old habits and begin this journey?
When I met the member here at PEAC who has lost a significant amount of weight, she pointed me in the right direction of who I should speak to about this and I thought "If she can do it, I can do it." When I made my first appointment with Dr. Chung, it actually fell on the anniversary of my mom's death and I figured that this was a sign from above that I was doing the right thing. My mother actually died of obesity at the age of 36 weighing 350 lbs. I also really wanted to set a good example for my daughter.
How has PEAC helped with this journey?
PEAC has been amazing. Doug has always been very complimentary and supportive. Kara was my biggest cheerleader, she would always tell me how amazing I looked and congratulate me. I've taken Megan and Tamika's class the most and Megan really helped me be accountable. If I didn't make it into class for a few days she would text me and check in with me. All of them have helped keep me accountable because they know when I'm here and they know when I'm missing.
I'm holding myself accountable as well by sharing this story so openly with everyone here at the gym and making myself visible so that I'm not saying "look at how successful I was" and then I go back to some of my old ways and let everyone see me get heavy again. It really takes a village.
What is currently your favorite class at PEAC?
Barre by far. My second favorite would be Pump and Jump.
What do you think sets PEAC apart from other gyms?
The employees, the cleanliness and the classes here.
Anything else you'd like to share about this journey?
A year ago I couldn't do a plank or a hamstring stretch which are big accomplishments for me because not only did I lose the weight but I'm getting stronger.
Another important thing I'd like to share is that Corona Premier is only 90 calories and 2 carbs and is my adult beverage of choice :)
My name is Keri Mandell and I am participating in one of the worlds most difficult endurance events, The World Marathon Challenge.
The World Marathon Challenge is a race that consists of 7 marathons in 7 days, on 7 continents. Yes, that’s 7 marathons in one week, all around the world!! The race will begin on February 6, 2020 starting in Antarctica and end on February 12th in Miami. I have chosen to compete in this race as a way to challenge myself both physically and mentally, but more importantly to raise awareness and funds to help fight cancer. I will run this race to honor my dad, Arthur Roedel who died an untimely death because of Multiple Myeloma.
I have pledged to raise $150,000 for this great cause. Running to help fight cancer is something that I am driven to do, passionate about, and being able to have the privilege to complete in one of the most challenging races on the planet is certainly an awesome bonus! I hope that through my actions and the sacrifices needed to compete, inspires others to join the fight. I could not be more excited to have joined with ACS on their mission to save lives, celebrate lives, and lead the fight for a world without cancer.
To help raise money for this cause, I will be instructing a Spin class at PEAC Health & Fitness:
Join Keri Mendell & PEAC Health & Fitness
Sunday, October 27, 11am - 12:15pm • $27
60min. spin class & 15min. yoga stretch with refreshments to follow. ALL Proceeds go to the American Cancer Society
I am excited about hosting this event, and hope you will join me! Thanks to PEAC Health & Fitness for donating the SPIN room and to everyone who joins me in this fight. I appreciate your support!
Such a silly name for a sport- but maybe you’ve been curious about this increasingly popular paddle sport that’s been taking over gym classes and fitness centers everywhere?
Pickleball is a fun combination of tennis and ping pong and has been attracting players of all ages and fitness levels- but especially older active adults.
But what’s so great about it?
It’s incredibly accessible for one. The court is small enough so you don’t have to move too much to hit the ball. You can play in doubles making playing a fun social experience. The rules are relatively simple making it easy to pick up and super beginner-friendly. The best part is the game is designed to be carefree and fun- none of the frustration that a game like golf can bring.
"What I think is great about pickleball is its simplicity. Very easy, straightforward rules and I like the fact that most people can become competent at playing it fairly quickly." says one of PEAC’s Pickleball coaches, Dan Marley.
If that’s not enough- consider some of these hidden health benefits that playing pickleball can bring!
Pickleball Benefit #1: You’ll lower your risk of heart disease
Pickleball gets you moving and if you play consistently the benefits will only increase. A recent study found middle-aged and older adults who played one hour of pickleball three days per week for six weeks improved their blood pressure. cholesterol and cardiorespiratory fitness levels.
“These positive changes to heart health are significant, as a large number of adults have elevated cholesterol levels, hypertension, or low cardiorespiratory endurance, which puts them at increased risk of cardiovascular disease,” says study author Lance Dalleck, Ph.D., an associate professor of exercise and sport science at Western Colorado University.
Pickleball Benefit #2: It’s a social experience
Whether you’re playing against one person or in pairs this sport will give you the chance to interact with others. It gives you the chance for some friendly competitive play or just some general social interaction, which is important for any person at any age!
“Pickleball is just so much fun...the perfect combination of exercising and socializing! After discovering pickleball at PEAC, I quickly made many new friends and found that I was hooked on this fast-paced and strategic game. The most rewarding aspect of my job is introducing new players to the game, and helping our pickleball community get bigger and better.” says our very own pickleball instructor Gina Alonzo.
Getting involved with a sport like this is the perfect way to become part of a community and to get your exercise in!
Pickleball Benefit #3: It’s a fun way to get moving
Rather than using the treadmill or going for a walk this sport provides a fun experience for anyone who is looking for a fun and unique way to get their workout in.
A study in the Journal of Aging and Physical Activity found people become loyal to the sport because it helps them meet their fitness goals and enhance social connections. It’s a two-for-one workout!
“Sometimes people are more willing to play a sport when it’s fun, and people report that playing pickleball is way more fun than going for a walk or going on the treadmill,” says Casper, the study author.
“If you were to spend 60 minutes in the gym,” he continues, “it usually feels like 60 minutes. But when you’re doing something you enjoy, like pickleball, where you typically have time to talk and laugh in the game, all of a sudden you’ve been playing for 60 minutes and you think, ‘Where did the time go?’”
Pickleball Benefit # 4: It can help you stay independent for longer
Older adults who play Pickleball regularly will find that it helps improve their reflexes and balance which can help them live independently for longer.
The sport gives them a chance to practice hand-eye coordination and to improve their range of motion which can help minimize arthritis symptoms and help an individual continue to perform everyday tasks with ease. Combined with the social interaction this sport provides as well as the chance to think about strategy, it will help keep your brain active and healthy as well.
In general, finding a sport like this that one generally enjoys will give you all the motivation to keep playing. Keeping physically active and social is always the best medicine!
But don't take our word for it, see for yourself why Pickleball has become so popular! As our instructor Gina says, “We welcome players of all ages and skill levels. Come out and give it a try, but be careful, it is addicting!”.
Click here for the Pickleball schedule here at PEAC!
This Tuesday, August 13th PEAC is hosting a “Girl’s Night Out” from 6-8pm. Come enjoy a special workout we have planned with a few of our instructors.
Starting at 6:30pm we have:
30 min STRONG Express with Amanda
30 min Beach Body Ready with Alex
15 min ab/cool down
After working out you can wind down with a glass of wine and enjoy some shopping with the variety of vendors we have lined up.
If you have kids, bring them! Our kids space will be open and kids can stay for the duration of the event (2 hours) for just $2.50/per child.
You do not have to be a member to participate! Make a night of it and invite your friends! Just be sure to register here: https://www.peachealthfitness.com/gno.html
Every year PEAC looks forward to hosting a 5K run. This mere 3.1 mile loop goes around the club and little way beyond, but brings great reward to all who attend, especially to the personnel at PEAC who organize the race. General Manager, Doug Steinly, was enthusiastic to make this year’s beneficiary the New Jersey Special Olympics.
The race took place on Thursday, May 9 which was an unseasonably brisk evening. None the less many shed their fleece hoodies and gathered at the starting line, located right outside main doors of PEAC Health & Fitness. A majority of the runners were loyal PEAC members, who always show up at PEAC events throughout the year. Meanwhile, a celebration was already underway for the finishers of the 1 Mile Fun Run that occurred before the main event.
Local vendors, PEAC employees, members, friends, and family all made this an amazing community event that raised $2,000 for Special Olympics New Jersey.
“It is an absolute honor and privilege to give back, and it is one of the things I enjoy most about the work I do here, ” commented Steinly, “it is a positive event with a focus on fitness, you really can’t lose.” An ironic thing for Steinly to say, being that his son Ryan finished first place overall, with a staggering time of 17:14.6. 2nd place was awarded to Pete Kinsella with a time of 17:16:9, and PEAC Personal Trainer Dave Martinsky was third to cross the finish line at 17:23:9. See complete list of finishing times.
But at the end of the day we are all winners here, and giving back to the community will continue to be high on the list of priorities at PEAC. We would like to thank everyone who attended the race, and all of our sponsors, listed below. We would not have been successful without all of you.
A final thank you to Special Olympics New Jersey, an organization that we have great respect and admiration for. Thank you for graciously in accepting our donation, and we look forward to working with you more in the future.
June 21st is International Day of Yoga and here at PEAC we offer many different types of yoga classes. If you’re unfamiliar with the practice of yoga this may just be the month you should give it a try! The practice of yoga is not just fancy poses or handstands, there are many physical, mental, and spiritual benefits that you can choose to practice and incorporate into your personal practice!
This is the part of yoga you are probably most familiar with, the various poses that you practice in a given class. You will find different combinations of poses and the pace at which you practice them depending on what type of class you take. If you practice a flow or faster paced class you will probably link various poses together and challenge yourself to move through them mindfully. If you practice a slower paced restorative or yin class, you will probably hold poses for longer periods of time focusing on getting deeper into the pose.
It is highly encouraged in yoga to listen to your body and to not force yourself into poses that are difficult for your body. What may be an easy pose for one person may be more challenging for you. Most of the time, yoga teachers will offer you variations of a pose to either help you get closer to achieving the pose or to help challenge you further.
Pranyama (breathing techniques)
“Pranyama” or breathing techniques is a common practice in yoga. It is said that the breath is the “life force” or the source of life. In yoga you might hear your teacher cue to “inhale” and “exhale” while moving through certain poses. In general you inhale whenever you are expanding or opening the body in any way and exhale when you are closing or shrinking inward.
Using the breath during yoga is extremely beneficial as it can actually help you with endurance in holding a pose or it can aid you in going deeper into a pose. Sometimes it’s beneficial to “send the breath” to certain areas of the body that you are working to help ease any discomfort in holding a pose for an extended period of time. You may even find it refreshing to have someone cueing your breath to remind you to actually breathe. Sometimes we unconsciously hold our breath (especially when being challenged physically) and being constantly reminded in class to inhale and exhale may feel extremely invigorating to the practitioner.
Meditation can be incorporated into a yoga practice or be practiced completely on its own. It is the act of sitting in stillness and quieting the mind. Meditation is an extremely beneficial tool, especially in today’s society when it’s not often that our mind is very quiet. It is sometimes a very difficult thing for people to practice but if practiced enough it can have an extremely positive effect on one’s mental state and relationship with self.
Practicing meditation can bring an overwhelming sense of peace to an individual because in today’s world we are always thinking about what’s next or reflecting on what is past. It can help one have better control over their mind in general. When practiced enough, it is an amazing skill to help one better handle times when their mind gets the best of them and gets carried away with potentially negative thoughts.
A lot of times in the yoga practice you end the class in savasanna which can be a form of meditation in itself. Savasanna is “corpse pose” where you sit in stillness, absorbing everything you just did in your yoga practice and ideally keeping the mind quiet and still.
Practicing Yoga can help give a person a better sense of purpose. There are various Yoga “sutras” that the yoga practice is built off of that can help one feel a sense of “oneness” with the universe or community they belong to. A lot of people come to the practice of yoga for it’s exercise benefits but may potentially find solace in the spiritual practices it offers as well.
This month in celebration of International Day of Yoga on June 21st , why not try one of our many different yoga classes and see what resonates most with you and your style? Below is a full list of the yoga classes we offer each day:
Yoga Deep release-10:30am
Yin Yoga- 12:15pm
Calm Flow Yoga- 4:30pm
Chair Yoga Fusion- 10:30am
Yin Yoga- 6:30pm
Beginner Yoga- 7:30pm
Rise and Shine Yoga- 6:30am
Gentle and Restore Yoga- 12:15pm
Power Yoga 6:30pm
Beginner Yoga- 10:30am
Chair Yoga Fusion- 10:45am
Rise and Shine Yoga- 6:30am
Beginner Yoga- 9:30am
Gentle and Restorative Yoga- 10:45am
Yoga for Every Body- 5:30pm
Yoga for Every Body- 7:30am
Depth and Alignment Yoga- 10:45am
Yoga for Athletes- 8:00am
Beginner Yoga- 10:45am
Restorative Yoga- 1:00pm
Global Wellness Day is coming up on June 8th and we are celebrating here at PEAC with a FREE GUEST DAY! Bring your family, friends and neighbors with you for FREE on this day so they can see the benefit in being part of such a great wellness community!
According to their website: Global Wellness Day is a not-for-profit organization that is dedicated to living well. The purpose of Global Wellness Day is to ask the question, even if for just one day, “How can I live a healthier and better life?”; to direct the thoughts of both individuals and society towards “living well” and to raise awareness of the importance of healthy living.
This organization was designed to support communities all over the world to have a healthier and higher quality of life - to realize the value of our life and not take it for granted. The main purpose of the day is:
This years focus will be on building communities of wellness and we are so excited because that it always our goal here at PEAC! Some of the ways we do this are through the various events and programs we offer so that each and every person no matter their age or fitness level can be part of our community. Some examples include:
-Forever Young- This program is specifically designed for individuals 54+ and is all about encouraging, informing, educating and promoting health, fitness, wellness and nutrition.
-KidsKamp- We offer this wonderful camp throughout the summer so kids can remain active and socialize with other kids!
-Personal training- We offer personal training at PEAC to assist members who want to get the most out of their workout routine, add some motivation or gain a better understanding of fitness.
-Group Exercise classes- We offer over 120 classes a week and have a class for everyone! Let the energy of the group move you!
-Workshops and seminars- We offer a variety of workshops throughout the year to complement our full service facility and group exercise classes!
-Community Outreach- We are always looking for ways to work with local organizations and often have events that benefit local charities and organizations!
Don’t forget to stop by with a friend on June 8th so we can continue to grow our amazing community and celebrate wellness not only on this day, but everyday!