Corporate Fitness and Active Aging

Staff High Five: Jaclyn Ruemmler

We say it with pride quite regularly, our amazing staff in corporate and senior living fitness centers are what help us serve our clients so well. Their strong educational background in health and fitness helps us set the bar high while their exceptional creativity and relationship building skills allows them to keep their members engaged and asking what’s coming next. Since we have the privilege of getting to know our staff across the country, we thought our followers might like to as well. Join us monthly as we throw a different NIFS team member a High Five.

  • JRuemmlerName: Jaclyn Ruemmler
  • City, State: Indianapolis, IN
  • Years with NIFS: A little over a year
  • Position: Fitness Center Manager
  • What brought you to NIFS: I was working in corporate wellness in North Carolina for about a year before I decided to move to Indianapolis with my boyfriend. I really enjoyed corporate wellness and working with a variety of people so after doing my job research, NIFS seemed like a perfect fit! I like that it is a smaller company, but with sites all over the country and a very welcoming atmosphere.
  • What is the most impactful moment you have shared with a member: Through our virtual Personal Fitness Quest program, I have been able to work with a variety of employees. I worked with one woman who had been quite sedentary her whole life and had poor range of motion with her movements. She was very excited to participate in this program and was determined to improve her health. After a course of 4 weeks, she had improved her shoulder range of motion and was moving much smoother. She had a step goal set for everyday and always came to our sessions with a positive attitude. Now she continues her workouts and stays active with our online offerings.
  • What separates a NIFS fitness pro from the rest: We all bring something different to the table with certifications, education, background, etc. but our overall goal as a staff is to improve the wellbeing of our members. We use creative, fun ways to interact with our members and always encourage them to accomplish their fitness goals.
  • What is your favorite thing about working at your client site: I love the facility and the people, we work with all kinds of people with different fitness goals and I enjoy helping them reach those goals. Also, the virtual programming has been awesome, I have been able to work with people all over the world.
  • What motivates you: I love seeing members enjoy a group fitness class, accomplish a fitness goal, or really enjoy a program we run. These all motivate me to be creative and continue to work hard.
  • What is your favorite hobby: I enjoy running and staying active outside (when it is warm!). I also enjoying exploring the city and surrounding areas with my boyfriend and friends.

Interested in learning more about our staffing services? Click below for what best fits your needs.

ACTIVE AGING   |   CORPORATE FITNESS

Topics: nifs staff

One resident’s reason to keep pushing forward

timThe individualized exercise prescription continues to be a strong driver of resident engagement in fitness programming in the senior living communities we serve. The approach is highly personalized and we have helped residents prepare for vacations with the grandkids, train for an upcoming golf season, focus on balance training, and condition for mountain hiking trips. The unique motivations for residents to begin or adapt their exercise routine are always inspiring. I have been working in fitness in the senior living industry for almost 20 years and the resident success stories we hear never get old and always bring a smile to my face. Hearing about individuals reclaiming their independence, achieving new goals, and gaining confidence is powerful and we are fortunate to work in a field that allows us to play a role in these accomplishments.

I had the pleasure of receiving the following feedback from Ashlie Burnett, our client contact at the Heritage at Brentwood in Brentwood, Tennessee this fall regarding our fitness manager, Tim Parrott and his work with a resident.

“Earlier today I walked past the Group Exercise Studio and noticed a resident was dancing with Tim. (Not actively, but Tim was present and nearby.) In conversation, I asked Tim and he said this resident has started and stopped a fitness routine every few months. He finally asked her specific goals and she said to dance. He decided to turn her exercise prescription into dance! Tim said after dancing for a couple of minutes she loosens up and her balance improves slightly. This is such a great example of functional fitness! Tim is a great addition to The Heritage and resource for residents.”     – Ashlie

According to resident Mrs. Nona Jane Kroha on her exercise prescription, “It has given me an impetus to move forward!”

Active Aging: Practicing Gratitude to Support Well-Being

MMFC gratitude treeOver the holiday season, NIFS active aging staff across the country provided a focus on self-care programming for the senior living residents we serve with an emphasis on a variety of avenues to practice gratitude. While 2020 may have left us feeling restricted with so many variables outside of our control, practicing gratitude as a component of a well-rounded self-care routine empowered residents to reflect on the positive aspects in their life and enhance their well-being. After all, research has proven that people who practice gratitude show more positive emotions, demonstrate more kindness, and even have stronger immune systems.

Here’s a little bit what our staff are reporting from those offerings:

NIFS Wellness Director, Candace - Newport News, Virginia

“We provided an Emotional Wellness Presentation focusing on education and self-care practices to enhance emotional well-being. Residents were very thankful for this presentation as most have felt their mental health has suffered during COVID-19. We also hosted a Gratitude Workshop where residents created Gratitude Pumpkins. They wrote all of the things they are thankful for on the pumpkin. They were also given “gratitude exercises” and thank you cards to write to those they are most thankful for!”

NIFS Wellness Coordinator, Meredith - Raleigh, North Carolina

“We hosted a speaker here that is a psychiatrist and he spoke on aging with grace (specifically during COVID-19) and so much of what he reflected on was taking time to express gratitude especially in the times when we feel we have the least to be grateful for.”

NIFS Fitness Specialist, Jennifer - Lakewood, New Jersey

“For our Health Center, family members recorded a short video wishing their loved ones a Happy Thanksgiving with well wishes. This was displayed on Touch Town on Thanksgiving Day. The excitement and wishes that the family members expressed were breathe taking. I have to say, that the programs and exercises that we provide, the residents are extremely thankful and appreciative.”

NIFS Fitness Manager, Miles - Bridgewater, New Jersey

“To deal with the toll the year has taken on resident’s mental and physical health, I ran a two-part presentation discussing the importance of stress management and mental health as we approached the COVID affected holiday season. The residents attended enjoyed the material and we were able to have great discussions after both presentations. In fact, hearing their concerns inspired me to begin a meditation class in December.”

NIFS Wellness Coordinator, Becca - Indianapolis, Indiana

“We ran a Tree of Gratitude program where we watched a tree grow full of gratitude leaves filled out be residents. The tree grew and filled in with more and more leaves as the month went on as a strong visual representation of what individuals and our community as a whole has to be thankful for.”

NIFS Wellness Director, Miles – Richmond, Virginia

“Residents were thankful for the self-care material as it was really needed here during this time period. The chaplain gave us recognition for the program, promoting each self-care week offering during her weekly bible study that is streamed.”

 

Self-care continues to be more important than ever as we not only ride out the challenges of the pandemic but also through the winter months ahead where many have difficulty being as physically active and struggle with seasonal mood disorder. Additional offerings NIFS team members provided residents over the holiday season included deep breathing exercises, laughter yoga, Chi Tea and Tai Chi events, mindful meal planning, mindfulness practices and healthy sleep tips. Adopt a daily practice of identifying three things you are grateful for and consider these additional self-care tips from NIFS to show yourself and others a little love.

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Staff High Five: Moira Cogswell

We say it with pride quite regularly, our amazing staff in corporate and senior living fitness centers are what help us serve our clients so well. Their strong educational background in health and fitness helps us set the bar high while their exceptional creativity and relationship building skills allows them to keep their members engaged and asking what’s coming next. Since we have the privilege of getting to know our staff across the country, we thought our followers might like to as well. Join us monthly as we throw a different NIFS team member a High Five.

  • MCogswellName: Moira Cogswell
  • City, State: Indianapolis, IN
  • Years with NIFS: Almost 2 years
  • Position: Assistant Manager, Active Aging
  • What brought you to NIFS: I knew about NIFS throughout my undergraduate schooling since many of our hands-on labs were at NIFS.  I was working in Minnesota and wanted to make the move back to Indiana and a good friend of mine was a corporate site fitness center manager, and she referred me to NIFS.  The rest is history!
  • What is the most impactful moment you have shared with a member:  There is a member of the fitness center that had not worked out regularly.  We were able to work together in finding an exercise prescription that worked for her wants and the needs we saw during a fitness evaluation.  I have been able to see her not only build her strength and abilities, but also her confidence when walking into the fitness center.  Now she comes to me asking about various exercises she has seen or incorporating functional exercises that she thinks she can improve upon.
  • What separates a NIFS fitness pro from the rest: With NIFS being nation-wide, there is a wide support system that you can go to to help keep classes interesting, programs fresh, and to be able to ask for general guidance on situations that may arise.  NIFS Staff members not only care about the members of their fitness centers, but also helping their peers!
  • What is your favorite thing about working at your client site: The variety in the clients – they are in their second childhood as many of them would say.  I can help them find a balance that works for their lifestyle, but also enable them to live their best lives by teaching them the 'why' so they understand.
  • What motivates you: Seeing the members improve is exciting.  When they tell me that they feel the difference, and they desire to challenge themselves is satisfying.
  • What is your favorite hobby: I really enjoy spending time outside on Lake Michigan or gardening, lifting weights, and spending time with my family and friends (when we are not in a pandemic)!

Interested in learning more about our staffing services? Click below for what best fits your needs.

ACTIVE AGING   |   CORPORATE FITNESS

Topics: nifs staff

What's Your Cup of Tea?

Throughout the day we have so many options on what we choose to drink. That may be water, coffee, tea, juice, or pop. What is your go to drink? Do you know how much caffeine is in it or how much sugar is in it? What about the amount of many calories it contains or how it could affect you? Never fear NIFS staff is here to help give you a better understanding of the drinks you are sipping on.

GettyImages-904544998Let’s get started with EVERYONES favorite go to drink, or should be, WATER! Magical water contains zero calories, zero sugars, and zero caffeine. By drinking water throughout the day your brain, kidneys, skin, joints, digestive system, body temperature, and blood pressure will all thank you! Water will help regulate the body to run properly and make you feel great.

Just sip on this, the human body is made up of 60% of water. Great, so what does that mean in depth? According to H.H. Mitchell, Journal of Biological Chemistry 158, the brain and the heart are composed of 73% water, the lungs are about 64% water, muscles and kidneys are 79%, and surprisingly bones 31% water.

Throughout the day we are losing that water by breathing, sweating, and using the restroom. Now how can we replenish what we have lost? YOU GOT IT! By good old H20.

Let’s talk about another popular drink that is consumed on a regular basis. As you wake up, still a little sleepy, on a chilly morning in January what would be the drink of choice? Or as you finish your nice supper and it is time for the decadent dessert with a cup of? You got it, a cup of Joe! A plain cup (8oz) of coffee contains less than five calories, zero sugars, and between 80-175 mg of caffeine depending on the type of coffee. Decaf coffee contains about 3-4 mg of caffeine. Remember when adding creamers to your coffee you will be adding 20-50 calories, 1.5 grams to 40 grams of sugar, and 0.3 grams to 20 grams of fat.

How does this delectable drink affect your body? When consuming in moderation (8-16oz) coffee can help:

  • Protect against Type 2 Diabetes
  • Protect against Heart Failure
  • Improve liver function/reduce risk of liver cancer
  • Lower risk of Parkinson’s Disease
  • Improve memory

We also have to understand that excessive intake of coffee can cause:

  • Increase heart rate
  • Increase blood pressure
  • Increase insomnia
  • Increase anxiety

Let’s turn the tables and talk about tea. Black tea contains 39-109mg of caffeine and two calories per 8oz cup. Green tea coming in at significantly less with 35mg of caffeine, and two to three calories per 8oz cup. Adding sweetener will significantly increase the amount of calories and sugars. Let’s say you add 1 tbsp. of honey, you will be adding on 64 calories and 17 grams of sugar. An alternative option to add a little more zest to your tea without adding an abundance of calories and sugar would be a squeeze of lemon. Benefits of tea included, decrease blood pressure, decrease cholesterol, inflammation, and help immune function.

Or you could give herbal teas a try! Herbal teas range from zero to three calories and contain zero caffeine. Types of herbal teas included, but not limited to, peppermint, chamomile, orange, hibiscus, blueberry, raspberry, ginger, lemon, and honestly just about any yummy flavor you can think of!

Benefits of herbal tea:

  • Improved blood pressure
  • Help to prevent kidney stones
  • Help digestion
  • Help cholesterol
  • Improves sleep
  • Reduces stress
  • Soothe stomach issues (constipation, IBS, and motion sickness).

While the drinks above may not be your cup of tea, what if you are a juice drinker? There are over 50 plus types of juices (vegetable, fruit, and combination of both) we have the option of choosing. Vegetable and Fruit juices range from 40-152 calories and five to 36 grams of sugar. Both vegetable and fruit juices have an abundance of vitamins and minerals that help improve heart and digestive health. When drinking juices, especially fruit juices remember the sugar intake is much higher, which could negatively affect the body’s function.

Increased intake of too much sugar could cause weight gain, increase risk of type 2 diabetes, increase heart disease, impact dental health, decrease energy, change mood (risk of depression), and more. Make sure to be mindful of the amount of sugar per serving!

Lastly, let’s talk about pop, soda, cola, or whatever you may call it! This bubbly sweet drink (diet and regular) ranges from zero to 190 calories, zero to 56 grams of sugar, and zero to 80 mg of caffeine per 12 oz. can. Added sugars may be hiding in the ingredients label so be aware! Also check out the amount of sodium the drink contains! Excessive intake of sodium can increase risk of high blood pressure, osteoporosis, and increase heart complications.

Some, alternatives to this carbonated drink are, but not limited to, sparkling water (AHA, Bubly, La Croix, Perrier, and Waterloo), sparkling juice (Bai, Ice, Polar, Sanpellegrino), and other types (Olipop- sparkling tonic, and Zevia –stevia pop). These drinks all have a variety of flavors and range from zero-fifteen calories, zero mg of caffeine, and zero-three grams of sugar.

At the end of the day it is all about moderation! Before taking a sip of your next drink take a look at the nutrition label and see how caffeine, sugar, and calories are in there. You may just rethink your drink!

Did you not read about a drink you consume regularly and are looking to find more nutritional information on a specific thirst-quencher? Contact your NIFS staff to get more information!

Topics: nutrition

Staff High Five: Jordan Matthews

We say it with pride quite regularly, our amazing staff in corporate and senior living fitness centers are what help us serve our clients so well. Their strong educational background in health and fitness helps us set the bar high while their exceptional creativity and relationship building skills allows them to keep their members engaged and asking what’s coming next. Since we have the privilege of getting to know our staff across the country, we thought our followers might like to as well. Join us monthly as we throw a different NIFS team member a High Five.

  • JMatthewsName: Jordan Matthews
  • Years with NIFS: a little over 3 years
  • Position: Fitness Center Manager
  • What brought you to NIFS: Learned about NIFS Fitness Management through a friend
  • What is the most impactful moment you have shared with a member: When I was working as a health fitness specialist in coverage I worked with an individual at one of our senior living communities. We worked together for 3 months to build enough quad and core strength to stand from the chair without using the chair arms. After 3 months we not only achieved our goal but they performed 9 more after that!  
  • What separates a NIFS fitness pro from the rest: The amount of care that is placed in every question, group fitness class, and training session. The trainers at NIFS show a passionate desire to try and help each person they encounter!
  • What is your favorite thing about working at your client site: The atmosphere that we have created at my client site is as close to a family as I’ve ever been outside of my own. Some employee’s look at the fitness center as a stress reliver and that is a testament to the positive atmosphere created. Running programs with employees at this site are fun and exciting.
  • What motivates you: I focus on what I preach to all my clients, “try to get 1% better every day”. I work with around 15 individual clients and they all have different goals that they want to achieve. Learning better ways to help clients towards there goals and motivating them to continue after there goals are reached.
  • What is your favorite hobby: I enjoy playing sports with my friends (as long as I don’t get hurt). I also, due to my competitiveness I love to play board games at home! One of my favorites is Monopoly.

Interested in learning more about our staffing services? Click below for what best fits your needs.

ACTIVE AGING   |   CORPORATE FITNESS

Topics: fitness center staffing nifs staff

Staff High Five: Kayla Hill

We say it with pride quite regularly, our amazing staff in corporate and senior living fitness centers are what help us serve our clients so well. Their strong educational background in health and fitness helps us set the bar high while their exceptional creativity and relationship building skills allows them to keep their members engaged and asking what’s coming next. Since we have the privilege of getting to know our staff across the country, we thought our followers might like to as well. Join us monthly as we throw a different NIFS team member a High Five.

  • KHillName: Kayla Hill
  • City, State: Towson, Maryland
  • Years with NIFS: 1 year
  • Position: Wellness Director
  • What brought you to NIFS: The work matters! We have the power to direct our attention to the things that truly express and support what we believe as an organization and on an individual level. The potential is limitless.
  • What is the most impactful moment you have shared with a member: One of our members loved to dance but was losing functionality of her limbs due to Parkinson’s. It became clear that she was sinking into a depressive state. I invited her to come down to the fitness center one afternoon and dance with me. While hesitant, she agreed. With the help of her aid, we got her up on her feet and shaking her tailfeather. She expressed sincere gratitude and said that she couldn’t remember the last time she had that much fun.
  • What separates a NIFS fitness pro from the rest: NIFS is an inspiring community of adaptable and courageous people who show up with full hands and hearts on deck. The Fitness Management staff put passion into everything they do. There is a clear sense of gratitude and joy. 
  • What is your favorite thing about working at your client site: My site is a true haven of warmth, positivity and love. Our community is filled with big-hearted individuals who continue to show up for one another. We are family.
  • What motivates you: 1. The opportunity to develop human potential. 2. Exploring possibilities for innovation. The more creativity I can bring into the mix, the more motivated I am to achieve a goal or complete a task.
  • What is your favorite hobby: I enjoy producing comedy skits and editing videos.

Interested in learning more about our staffing services? Click below for what best fits your needs.

ACTIVE AGING   |   CORPORATE FITNESS

Topics: nifs fitness management staffing staffing

Time for Creativity to Enhance Your Wellbeing

GettyImages-1071112386As the end of 2020 approaches, there are daily reminders that life has changed. For some, these reminders are feelings of loneliness that didn’t exist just a few months ago. Older adults are at the highest level of risk for severe illness from COVID-19 and older adults are also at an increased risk of depression, as many are more isolated than ever. Now here’s the good news: there has never been a better time to be creative at home. Discovering and exercising creativity benefits people of all ages by directing time and energy into something positive, helping maintain or improve dexterity and coordination, and providing an opportunity for safe social interaction.

Much to be Gained

Even for people who don’t consider themselves creative, there is much to be gained by experimenting with creation. If boredom at home is your issue, try turning off the TV and put your hands and mind to work. It may not sound like fun at first, but nothing makes time fly like learning a new skill or adopting a new hobby. With the holidays approaching, now is the absolute best time to start hand-making presents for friends and family. Apps like Pinterest and YouTube have countless blogs and videos to provide instruction on how to complete a variety of projects and crafts.

Physical Benefits

Some creative endeavors like sculpting and building can be physically demanding. Working hard to create something can be just as good for your body as exercise, but you don’t have to break a sweat! Embroidery, drawing, painting, woodcarving, and other handcrafts are fantastic exercises in dexterity and hand-eye coordination. When parts of your body work together to create something or accomplish a goal, the connection between those systems can be maintained or even improved. The arts that mankind has been doing for millennia have stuck around because, among other reasons, they’re good for you.

Getting Back Out There

Regular involvement in social activities is essential for healthy aging. This can look different for everybody, but the importance of engagement cannot be understated. There are a number of opportunities to explore within senior living communities to help seniors be socially engaged while staying safe. Art classes are relatively easy to socially distance, as an artist will usually prefer to have plenty of elbow room anyway. Woodworking clubs are usually small groups and tool handles are easily cleaned. In the community I serve, a group of residents called the handcrafters get together weekly to knit. When I asked about the benefit of their group, one handcrafter said, “With nothing else going on, it is much easier to knit and be guilt-free about spending my time knitting. When I can’t go anywhere, I can sit down and enjoy my handcrafting.”   Small, safe groups of common creativity are powerful.

Whether you are taking up a new hobby or honing your skills on a lifelong pastime, consider the added benefits to your overall well-being to be socially engaged and creative.

What is your favorite creative outlet or favorite past-time activity?

 

 

 

Topics: resident wellbeing

Holiday Celebrations in the Pandemic Season

GettyImages-12803660852020 has been bizarre to say the least. As the holiday season and another wave of caution approaches many are getting creative with how they plan to celebrate this holiday season in a more untraditional way. Don’t let the pandemic bring down your holiday cheer or derail your diet. Check out these tips for keeping things light for both your mood and your stomach!

Gathering at a distance - We are used to coming together in large groups. Whether with family, friends, or coworkers, check out these ways you can celebrate differently.

  • Stick to your quarantine crew. Rather than extended family dinners, choose to dine with your immediate family/friends or those who have been in your circle.
  • Friendsgiving doesn’t have to fall to the wayside. If the season is your time to unite with old friends, set up a time to zoom. (#ZoomTogether, Zoom announced they are lifting the 40 minute limit on Thanksgiving). Nothing like a cocktail hour from the safety of home at a safe distance to round out the year.
  • Family game night, enjoy the time with family differently. If annual cousin meet ups are your jam for fun games simply plan differently. Virtual games like Pictionary, charades, Bingo and more can be a fun way to enjoy each other.
  • Pick up the phone, simply make some phone calls to brighten your mood and the mood of your loved ones. Share stories and memories of your favorite past holidays.
  • Miss those work pitch-ins and chili cook-offs? Zoom your work friends and enjoy a lunch together. So many employees are working remotely and miss that interaction, change up your week and schedule a lunch zoom with your co-workers.

Avoid a diet derailing – Just because you might enjoy the holidays in your pajamas, or better yet that new Zoom dress code, (business up top, lounge wear on bottom,) doesn’t suggest you eat the whole pie. Stick with these tips to avoid over doing it at meal time and over stretching the elastic in your pants.

  • Don’t overdo the menu. Consider the size of your quarantine crew, you may not be cooking for as many people.
  • Be prepared for healthy snacks, having fruit and veggies readily available.
  • Drink a large glass of water before you eat. It really does help you from the start of your meal.
  • Choose and make one dessert rather than multiple pies.
  • Healthy side options can be just as tasty, choose wisely.

There are many tips and tricks to survive the holidays in a healthy way. Start your day with a walk or workout and set yourself up for holiday success. That way if you do choose an extra sweet treat, you earned it!

How are you celebrating differently this season?

Topics: healthy diet holidays

Staff High Five: Christy Monday

We say it with pride quite regularly, our amazing staff in corporate and senior living fitness centers are what help us serve our clients so well. Their strong educational background in health and fitness helps us set the bar high while their exceptional creativity and relationship building skills allows them to keep their members engaged and asking what’s coming next. Since we have the privilege of getting to know our staff across the country, we thought our followers might like to as well. Join us monthly as we throw a different NIFS team member a High Five.

  • Name: Christy MondayCMonday-1
  • City, State: Indianapolis, IN
  • Years with NIFS: 12 years
  • Position: Fitness Manager
  • What brought you to NIFS: After completing my college education I became certified as an exercise physiologist with ACSM. I started at the NIFS commercial fitness center in downtown Indianapolis. After five years, I transitioned to corporate fitness coordinating the internship program, and coverage staff while also managing a fitness center in downtown Indianapolis. I currently am working at a corporate fitness center in Indianapolis.   
  • What is the most impactful moment you have shared with a member:  I have worked with many members with different health and fitness goals over the years, and one of the most impactful moments is when a member could not longer play basketball due to pain he experienced in his knee joints after playing. It was determined after checking with his physician, he did not have any structural damage to the knee. I worked with him for several weeks on improving his flexibility. By week six he had greater range-of-motion in his hips, calves, hamstrings and quads. He was able to participate in playing basketball again with no pain.
  • What separates a NIFS fitness pro from the rest: I like that staff are encouraged and have the freedom to provide new services or programs for a site, in regards to what he or she thinks is best, that will engage members to obtain their best health. It is great to have management support and trust staff in this process.   
  • What is your favorite thing about working at your client site: I enjoy walking along side members to support them on their journey of better health and fitness.
  • What motivates you: When members share their health and fitness success stories! It motivates me to do my best to impact the next member who needs support to reach their health and fitness potential.     
  • What is your favorite hobby: Cycling is a great activity I like to do that takes me outside to see different country roads, bike trails, and city and state parks.   

Interested in learning more about our staffing services? Click below for what best fits your needs.

ACTIVE AGING   |   CORPORATE FITNESS

Topics: nifs fitness management staffing staffing