Experience Sarasota: Balanced Health & Fitness
Expert knowledge mixed with years of experience offering a plethora of services all under one roof. Isn’t it time for you to get Balanced?
It is hard for me to know where to begin writing, I learnt so much, had so many great experiences and met some really terrific people at Balance Health and Fitness.
The first time that I walked into Balance which is located on: 423 North Lemon Avenue, I thought that I possibly had the wrong building. This health and fitness center was like nothing I had seen before: light and airy, vaulted ceilings, spacious with modern lightening and beautiful artwork hung on the walls. It is in this setting that Balance Health and Fitness facilitates people by bringing the elements of their body together in harmony. Through: personal training, nutrition management, yoga, massage and rejuvenation therapies, Balance helps you to get… balanced.
This is a local fitness center there is no corporate chain, each professional is an independent contractor and together they form Balance Health and Fitness.
As I have already mentioned, I had the pleasure of meeting some of the talented group at Balance, so let me introduce you to them.
Stacey is a nutritionist, she best describes herself as “a holistic health coach”. I met with Stacey at a local coffee shop and from the moment she started telling me about what she did I was completely captivated. Everything that she told me was fascinating and her passion for what she does is really quite phenomenal. Stacey originally got her bachelors in nursing and then attended the worlds’ largest nutrition school – Integrative Institute of Nutrition in New York. What Stacey does is not just about weight loss, her focus is a “whole lifestyle change” Stacey focuses on whole fresh foods packed with nutrients, eating seasonally (like we did as hunters and gatherers), herbs and spices and basically the power of food. What we put into our body clearly results in our day-to-day life, our health, energy levels and mood are all affected by the fuel that we feed ourselves. Stacey practiced as a nurse for several years, then she made a bold move and left her nursing career because she believed that there was more to be done than issuing medicine and performing surgeries “masking problems does not fix anything” said Stacey, as a holistic health coach “now I actually feel like I can effect peoples health and well being”. I asked Stacey what her area of expertise was and she replied “ weight loss, moderate health conditions and trying to elevate quality of life by being conscious about what you are putting into your body.”
Stacey really does have a holistic approach, from; coaching you to retrain your brain and eating habits to helping you learn how to shop for whole and fresh foods and even cooking lessons. Stacey’s mission is to “bring clean eating to Sarasota”. As well as her personal nutrition coaching she has been teaming up with local restaurants and chefs such as; Tommy Klauber at Polo Grill, creating clean eating menus.
I would strongly recommend connecting with Stacey to see how she can help you get balanced, Stacey insists that no matter your age or your weight and health issues “it is never too late to make a change”
Karen Gallagher has been a personal trainer for over thirty years and in her own words “I still love what I do”. Karen’s love and enthusiasm for what she does is very apparent and her knowledge and professionalism shines through in everything that she does. My first meeting with Karen involved sitting down and discussing; goals, previous injuries and also health and medical history. Karen took all of my measurements and measured my BMI (I won’t share but I was pretty happy with my number). Karen explained that all the measurements are taken so that her clients can see every bit of their results every time that they are re-measured. Karen was extremely thorough in everything that she did and in all that she explained. She examined my posture, watched me walk, checked my spine
curve and shoulder height. Karen’s insight was fascinating, she explained how seemingly small abnormalities over time and with age can become debilitating and can seriously impact your quality of life. After answering all of my questions and making all of her observations I left Karen to create a workout plan for our next meeting.
Karen met me with her big friendly smile and we got straight to work. She had a circuit of exercises planned out that targeted all of my muscle groups. The exercises focused on building strength, Karen was always watching my form ensuring that I was safely carrying out each exercise. She worked on my preexisting injuries incorporating stretches and helping with rehabilitation. Throughout my session Karen showed me exercises that I could do at home that would help strengthen my injured muscles and help improve my posture. Karen’s expertise was very apparent and her experience of also working at a physical therapy facility further adds to her insight. Although I was working hard I was still enjoying myself because I was in such good company. A friendly, professional, motivator with years of experience what more could you be looking for in a personal trainer?
When my session was over I have to admit that I was sad that this experience had come to an end. If you are looking for a personal trainer who will surely exceed your expectations’ then you should definitely make an appointment with Karen Gallagher.
Angela Fox is a licensed massage therapist. Yes I was able to experience the magic of this ladies hands (jealous of my job? You should be!)
Angela has been a massage therapist for several years. At Balance she often collaborates with the trainers helping to resolve clients issues. Angela incorporates a lot of different styles, such as; Swedish, deep tissue, Lomi Lomi, energy balancing, therapeutic, reflexology and aromatherapy. “I use my entire body” says Angela. I asked her what the main benefits of massage were (other than feeling amazing); “where do I begin… reduces stress, increases blood flow and circulation, increases mobility and helps heal injuries”
When I met with Angela we discussed my health and medical history, she told me what to expect and asked me if there were certain areas that I would like to be worked on. Angela’s small, clean and quiet room was the perfect setting. Gentle sounds of waves crashing and ambient lighting provided a calming and sensory experience. I have had a number of massages and can honestly say that this was the best one that I have ever had. If you need to unwind or have a troublesome area then you must make an appointment with Angela, or perhaps you have a friend or loved one that you want to spoil and make an appointment for.
-Angela also offers prenatal and infant massage.
Courtney and Alli are the in-house yoga instructors, yes balance has it’s very own yoga shack ran by these two lovely ladies.
I had never been to a yoga class before so this was my very first yoga experience and I loved it. If you have any doubts as to whether yoga is actually a workout, then I will tell you that I have never sweated so much in my life! My whole body felt engaged and it felt awesome. Yoga has many physical benefits and many people also enjoy it for it’s “relaxation and mind, body, spirit connection” says Courtney. The style of Yoga that Courtney and Alli teach is called Power Vinyasa (vinyasa means breath with movement), the classes involve a steady flow of movement.
“Yoga is a different approach to exercise” said Courtney. She explained that some of the benefits to yoga included; stress relief, body strength, flexibility and toning. Courtney explained that “you can practice yoga anywhere and you always keep learning and improving”. The girls are passionate about sharing yoga with others and every last Friday of the month they offer a donation based class to encourage people to try it out. Regular classes run Monday through Saturday. So get your yoga on and pay a visit to Alli and Courtney.
Well there you have it my full Balance experience. Expert knowledge mixed with years of experience offering a plethora of services all under one roof. Isn’t it time for you to get Balanced? For more information or to connect with any of the people mentioned in this article visit www.balancehealthandfitness.