Archive for September 2010

Ask the Expert: Finding a Personal Trainer

Hilton Head Health

Q:  How do I find a good, reliable, experienced personal trainer?

It is very important to find a good personal trainer.  This includes many different aspects like convenience of time/location, personality connection, training philosophy, knowledge of specific health issues, nutritional philosophy, and methods of motivation.  When you’re first getting started, this might seem a little overwhelming – use these steps to make it an easy process:

1.  Research.  The American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) and the American Council on Exercise (ACE) are highly accredited organizations that certify personal trainers.  Trainers certified by ACSM are required to have a bachelor’s degree in a related field.  Both organizations provide “pro finders” on their websites.  Simply follow the links below, plug the information in for your area, and it will pull up a list of ACSM / ACE certified trainers in your area, along with contact information. 

ACSM Certified Trainers:

* You have the option to select a specific certification level, or leave it blank for all levels.  Recommended levels to search under for general population are – ACSM Certified Health Specialist or ACSM Certified Personal Trainer.

ACE Certified Trainers:

2. Interview.  It is important to interview the trainer on your personal key points of interest.  Questions may vary.  What is your average clientele? When are you available?  What is your training and nutrition philosophy? How would you describe your training style?  How often will you change up my routine?  What happens if I do not show up for a session?  Will you travel to my home?  Do you have experience with my injury/limitation?

3.  Client References.  Ask the trainer for permission to contact a couple of their clients as references.  You might ask what their most and least favorite thing is about working with the trainer.  Ask how long they have been working with them, how they rate their success, and what they attribute it to. 

4.  Trial Period.  Complete a trial period prior to signing up for a large package.  Commit for one month at the most, to start, and then go from there. 

5. Do Your Part.  Remember, your dedication and actions when you’re not with your trainer are also important.  Make sure you are owning up to your part of the routine. 

Have a question?  The healthy lifestyle experts are here to help!  Email with your question and check back every Thursday for our feature column.




The best part of waking up…


…is the aroma of coffee brewing in my kitchen.  Are you one of the millions who begin your day with a tall cup of joe?  To celebrate National Coffee Day, I thought it would be most appropriate to include a bit of insight in today’s blog post. 

Did you know that over 400 BILLION cups of coffee are consumed each year?  A worldly commodity only second to that of oil.  Thanks to a special goat herder in the 9th century Ethiopia, coffee was first discovered after he noticed the stimulating effects of coffee berries on his goats and began experimenting.  A century later, coffee began to be roasted and traded by the Arabs.  From there, the beans entered the Indian and European markets and the first coffee shop was opened in 1475!  (Pretty sure it wasn’t served in a cute white cup with a green logo.)

In the health world, coffee and caffeine is a hot topic.  Is coffee good or bad for me?  Well, I spoke to H3’s Director of Education, Bob Wright to get more information.  Here’s what he said:

Over the past 5-10 years, new research has shown that there may actually be more health benefits than risks.   As I don’t really promote coffee drinking, there is no real reason to avoid it.  Here at H3, coffee is available in the mornings to enjoy with breakfast, up until about 10:00 am.  The main reason we limit the serving time is due to the public health guideline which recommends limiting caffeine to 400 milligrams per day.  The typical 8 oz. coffee cup has about 100 milligrams of caffeine (not to be confused with a Starbucks Venti).  Keep in mind that it is best to drink black coffee, as most additions like cream, sugar and whipped toppings add unwanted calories and fat grams. 

To sum it up, coffee is like everything else, enjoy in moderation and choose your drink using ‘Unwise, Better, Best’ method.  So, drink up and enjoy!

**Hey H3 Facebook Friends – you still have until next Wednesday to upload your favorite recipe photos to win the prize!  Why not whip up a batch of the Sweet Potato Scones or Blueberry Muffins to enjoy with your morning coffee?



Fall is here!

Don’t you just love the fall season!  Growing up in the Midwest, I do miss the beautiful changing leaves on the trees, but that aside, there are so many wonderful things about this season.  Here’s my top 5:

  1. Comfortable temperatures.  The lower heat and humidity makes bike rides, walks/jogs, etc. so much more enjoyable.  It’s a perfect time to hit the nature trails and notice all that’s changing around you.  On my jogs here in the low country, I enjoy watching the marsh grasses change from their vibrant summer green to the yellows and browns that make up their growth cycle.  The monarch butterflies are plentiful and the birds and wildlife are also more active!
  2. Seasonal produce.  After our fill of summer’s berries and melons, yellow squash and asparagus, I welcome the freshness of fruits like apples, pears, cranberries, pomegranates, and kiwis.  The seasonal vegetable seem to multiply with all the cruciferous veggies like cabbage, cauliflower, broccoli, and bok choy, not to mention the classics like pumpkin, green beans, acorn and spaghetti squash, edamame, spinach, and collard greens.  Cinnamon and nutmeg are wonderful fall flavors to experiment with your fruits and veggies. 
  3. Cozy comfort.  There’s nothing like pulling out your favorite “hoodie” or soft sweater as you take a walk at sunset or attend an afternoon football game.  I love the crisp cool air on your face as your body is warm inside that favorite, comfortable sweater you’ve had for years.  Anyone with me?
  4. Warm colors of fall.  With orange tones sending vibes of energy, and yellows hope and happiness, powerful reds, and renewing greens, you cannot help to reflect on your own energy, happiness, and growth from the year so far.  It’s a time when individuals and businesses alike reflect on their successes and challenges from the year and begin plans for the year to come.  We can acknowledge the stressful moments like year-end for businesses and tax season is approaching, but don’t overlook this beautiful season with so much to offer!
  5. Family time.  Fall is often filled with family gatherings.  Halloween and Thanksgiving are fun times for festivities and traditions, which means times filled with stories, hugs, and laughter – all, shall we say, “soothing to the soul.” 

What are the Top 5 things you look forward to in the fall?  Take some time to enjoy this fall season with us during Devin’s DashFIT Week, Recipe for Success:  Holiday Cooking Healthy workshop, or Reunion Week! 

Here are a few pictures from last year’s fall festivities:

Reunion Week 2009 - Getting into the 70's theme with a little tie-dye

Reunion Week 2009 - Getting into the 70's theme with a little tie-dye

Finished product - doesn't it look great!

Finished product - doesn't it look great!

Reunion Week 2009 - Disco Night!

Reunion Week 2009 - Disco Night!



Get H3 Inspired: Debbie Poole

Our most recent Get H3 Inspired story comes to you in the form of a letter.  We received this email recently and asked Debbie if we could share it with you.  

Dear Bob,

I returned home a little over a week ago from my first visit to Hilton Head Health and I just want to say “THANK YOU” to all of your associates.

My experience surpassed my expectations.  The exercise classes were wonderful!  I really enjoyed all the classes I had with Louis, she does such a wonderful job of challenging everyone, with an awareness for the many levels throughout the class.  Amber’s Treading class was new to me, but I’m definitely going to look for a gym that has it, or use the “cheat sheet” provided by you and do it myself.

When I was looking into Hilton Head Health I thought the educational classes would be okay, but I wasn’t all that excited about them.  I can say they were my FAVORITE part of my experience.  The passion of all the instructors is contagious.

I have been able to come home and make small changes that are making a difference.  My scales show I have lost 9 pounds from my beginning weight there.  My energy level is higher and I feel great.  My boss actually commented that I got my Mojo back.

I look forward to future visits for tune ups.


Debbie Poole

If you have a story you’d like to share, please e-mail us at! Make sure to put ‘Get Inspired’ in the subject line.



H3 Recipe: Shrimp and Scallop Scampi

Shrimp and Scallop Scampi


8 each            Sea scallops, drained, and dechained, seared on griddle

24 pieces       Peeled, de-veined shrimp, tail on, 21/25  or use 16/20

1 T.                  Garlic

½  cup            White wine

1 T.                  Butter buds

1 T.                  Lemon Juice

2 T.                  Parsley, chopped

4 tsp.               Butter

To taste          Salt and pepper


  • Heat a sauté pan over medium-high heat; lightly spray with cooking spray.    
  • Drain juices from shrimp and scallops
  • Add the garlic to the saute pan, stir and saute for about 1 minute then add shrimp
  • Add the white wine, lemon juice and butter buds and let the sauce reduce by 1/2.
  • Cook until the shrimp is pink and curls up slightly.
  • Add butter, and stir until melted.
  • Toss in chopped parsley, salt and pepper
  • Remove from heat.
  • Serve shrimp and seared scallops in large ramekin, and drizzle one ounce of scampi sauce over shrimp and scallops


Chef’s Note:  Scallops may be seared in separate pan next to shrimp or done at the same time.  However, the shrimp will cook faster, so you may want to pick out the shrimp when they are done and continue to let the scallops cook.              


Number of servings: 4

Serving size: 6 shrimp(21/25) and 2 scallops

Calories: 220

Fat grams:  5 grams


On another note, I encourage you to enter our Facebook Frenzy Recipe Photo Contest.  Just pick your favorite H3 recipe (or one you’ve been dying to try), prepare it, and then take a picture of your dish and upload it to our Facebook page!  You have a chance to win the H3 Cookbook and one of our Cooking Healthy aprons!  Click here for more details.  Get cooking!



Protect Your Health with Prevention

As many of have probably heard by now, we recently lost a colleague and dear friend Devin Schaeffer.  Unfortunately, Devin developed a fairly rare form of intestinal cancer for which there are no effective screening tests, and by the time it was diagnosed it could not be successfully treated.  Fortunately, there are effective screening tests for several of the most common and deadly cancers.  However, many people are unaware of the guidelines, or ignore them.

According to the Centers for Disease Control, while screening rates have improved, millions are not getting the tests and as a result, thousands are dying needlessly.  For example 7 million American women who should have had a mammogram, have gone without it, and 22 million Americans who should have undergone colon cancer screening have not done so.  Even healthy, famous doctors are not immune to the risks of cancer.  Dr. Oz recently decided to get a colonoscopy.  Not because he felt he was at risk and needed one, but because he had just turned 50 and meeting the criteria for screening, he thought he should be a good role model and practice what he preaches.  No one was more surprised than him when he was informed that he a precancerous polyp.  Fortunately it was removed then and there during the colonoscopy.  Dr Oz admitted that had he not been such a public figure he may have waited several years before getting screened and by that time he may have developed a life threatening case of colon cancer.  Please review the following guidelines published by the American Cancer Society and if you meet the criteria for screening for any of the cancers listed – call your doctor TODAY.

One way to honor those who have passed away is to do something they would be proud of; I know Devin would be proud to know that he may have helped motivate you to take positive steps to preserve and improve your health.  Another way to honor Devin is to participate in the first annual Devin’s Dash Memorial 5k Race on October 16th.  I know that most of will not be able to come to Hilton Head and actually run or walk the actual course, but how about doing your own 5K that morning.  Hop in your car and chart out a 3.1 mile course and walk or jog it the 16th.  The race starts at 8:00am.  Join us in spirit and effort even if you can’t actually be here.  Donations are being accepted in his honor and will go directly to the American Cancer Society. You may register for the race and donate here.



Friday Fitness: Farmer’s Walk

Farmer's Walk

Fall harvest season has finally arrived!  Today’s workout will include a Farmers Walk in admiration of our wholesome harvest spirits! May we also, always strive to harvest our inner athlete! Good Luck!


  • 200 Meter “Farmers Walk” (Carry heavy dumbbells by sides while walking-core strengthening exercise.)
  • 60 Jumping Jacks
  • 50 Squats
  • 40 Push Ups
  • 30 Mountain climbers (High plank position, drive knees into chest. Alternate legs.)
  • 20 Crunches

Repeat the circuit 5 times.



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