Step Out of Your Comfort Zone

Step Out of Your Comfort Zone

“What lies behind you and what lies in front of you, pales in comparison to what lies inside of you.”

Ralph Waldo Emerson


It feels good to feel comfortable, right? It’s safe, it’s familiar, and in that state of comfort nothing changes – but is that a good thing?

There is a saying that states, “Great things never came from comfort zones” (Author Unknown), so why limit yourself to a life of mediocrity? That may be tough to swallow, but it’s the words that many who want to make a change need to hear. Stepping out of your comfort zone can be scary; however, challenging yourself helps push you further than you ever could imagine.

Now take a moment to reflect upon something you’ve wanted to change, improve upon, or take a risk on in your life – let’s make it a reality. The fact is, many of us want to make changes for the better, but it’s hard taking that first step. As part of the LA Fitness family, you are surrounded by a community of like-minded individuals all working towards personal improvements of their own. You are not alone in the journey.

Everyone Has a Story

The you today will not be the same you 5 years from now, and that’s a good thing! Push yourself daily to become a better you than the day before, and you’ll be proud looking back at how far you’ve come. However, it’s easier said than done. The fear of the unknown can hold you back from experiencing some of the greatest moments you can imagine, and accomplishing more than you ever thought possible, but we’re here to say: it can be done.

  1. Get to the gym.
  2. Stay motivated.
  3. Keep your goals close, and your reasons for wanting to accomplish them even closer.
  4. Track your progress.
  5. Don’t let small setbacks discourage you.
  6. Celebrate success.

If you feel like you could use a little extra motivation, consider signing up for a training session with one of our Pro Results® personal trainers.* They can help answer your PT-related questions, assist in designing a customized workout plan for you, and provide ongoing motivation and support.

However, if you’re not quite ready to set up a PT appointment, or you just feel more comfortable working out on your own, you can still benefit from the support of your fellow LA Fitness community. Share your Commit to Fit goals with us for a chance to be featured on Living Healthy! Regardless of where you are at on your journey to becoming a healthier and more fit you, we believe in you.

Already an LA Fitness member? Do you feel like encouraging a friend or family member to join you on your path to success? Send them a 14-day guest pass here.

*Personal training services require an additional agreement and are subject to additional fees.

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Macro-nutrients & Bodybuilding | Q+A

Macro-nutrients & Bodybuilding | Q+A


I have done body building in the past and know that the perfect combination of protein/carbs/fats produce results with respect to giving the body what it needs to develop lean muscle and lose fat. This is done in part by measuring body fat and weight. How would you calculate this because I had someone do it for me in the past and don’t know how to do it myself. It was broken down into total protein, carbs and fats for the  whole day and further broken down per meal. Can you duplicate this process?

– Alisa O.


I will admit that I am not sure what “perfect combination” of macro-nutrients you are referring to. One’s individual body composition can be used to help create personal nutritional goals. Actual nutrient needs are much more complex and depend on protein turnover, nitrogen loss and metabolism. Also, nutrient quality, timing and frequency have an impact on developing lean muscle and losing fat.

That said, I like the summary bodybuilding recommendations from an article in the Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition*:

Diet component                                     Recommendation

Protein (g/kg of lean body mass)           2.3-3.1

Fat (% of total calories)                          15-30%

Carbohydrate (% of total calories)          remaining

Let’s work through these with a sample 2,000 calorie diet for a 160-pound person with 15% body fat.

  • His or her lean body mass is 62 kg (from 72.73 kg x 0.85).
  • Protein: Recommended range is 142-192 grams (from 62 kg x 2.3-3.1 g/kg). Energy-wise, this amount of protein provides 568-768 calories.
  • Fat: Recommended range is 300-600 calories (from 2,000 x .15-0.3). This equates to 33-67 grams of fat.
  • Carbohydrate energy would be the remainder; we’ll use the range midpoints to get 882 calories (from 2,000 – 668 protein – 450 fat). By grams, this would be 220 grams of carbohydrate.

Apply the recommendations to your own anthropometrics and total energy need to get a possible ideal combination of macro-nutrients for your goals.

*Evidence-based recommendations for natural bodybuilding contest preparation: nutrition and supplementation.  Helms, ER, Aragon AA, Fitschen PJ. Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition 201411:20

– Debbie J., MS, RD

This article should not replace any exercise program or restrictions, any dietary supplements or restrictions, or any other medical recommendations from your primary care physician. Before starting any exercise program or diet, make sure it is approved by your doctor.

Some questions have been edited for length and/or clarity.

Ask our Dietitian

Have a nutrition question? Our registered dietitian is ready to help!

Email or submit your question below and it may be featured in an upcoming article!

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Here’s How to Overcome a Weight Loss Plateau

Here’s How to Overcome a Weight Loss Plateau

You’re exercising and you’re eating right, so why have you hit a weight loss wall? It’s frustrating and easy to start sliding back into old bad habits when it seems like your progress has come to a screeching halt, but don’t be discouraged. Weight loss plateaus are normal, but what causes them? Well, a few factors can play into this:

  1. You’ve lost your water weight due to the help of glycogen, partly made of water, being burned for energy. This weight loss effect is only temporary.1
  2. You may have lost some muscle in the weight loss process, causing your metabolism to decline. Muscle helps provide a higher caloric-burn rate, so when you lose muscle you slow your metabolism, causing the body to burn fewer calories than before.2
  3. You’re eating more calories than you’re burning. As you lose weight, you have to make sure you’re adjusting your workout and caloric intake to match the goal you’re looking to achieve. You may have to amp up your exercise routineand/or change up your diet. Sometimes the body will get used to a routine and stop giving the results you desire because it needs to be jump-started again with a new-targeted exercise. Try switching things up.

The main factor to remember is NOT TO SLIP BACK INTO BAD HABITS. Remind yourself daily that you’ve become healthier and stronger than before. A number on a scale does not define success. Some tips that may help you overcome the fitness funk can be found below:

  • Focus on the quality of the food you’re eating, rather than just calorie count. Consuming protein burns more calories during digestion and it contains the amino acid leucine, which helps provide the body with energy.
  • Make proper sleep a priority. Yes, it may seem counterintuitive, but allowing your body the time it needs to rest can reset your hormones.3 Also, sleep deprivation increases the risk of your body developing higher levels of cortisol (dubbed the “stress hormone”), and elevated levels of this hormone can lead to an increase in body fat – especially around the midsection!
  • Have you tried drinking more water? If you find yourself hungry but you’re already consuming an adequate number of calories, opt for a glass of H20. That may help curb cravings and prevent overeating.


  • Make sure strength training is incorporated into your workout routine along with cardio. Strength training will help the body build muscle, which helps burn more calories. Therefore, this can lead to more fat being

Still not seeing results? If you feel like your weight loss plateau is lasting a lot longer than expected, check with your physician to make sure there are no underlying medical issues.


  1. “Weight Loss Stalled? Move Past the Plateau.” Mayo Clinic, Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research, 7 Jan. 2015,
  2. Ibid
  3. Larue, Kristina. “10 Tips to Overcome a Weight-Loss Plateau | MyFitnessPal.” Under Armour, 17 Feb. 2015,

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Commit to Fit Featured Member Goals

Commit to Fit Featured Member Goals

Commit to Fit

Do you have a fitness goal? Let us know here! To learn more about Commit to fit, click here.

Goals, Commitments, Community

Commit to Fit is a program designed to help members stick to their fitness goals. In fact, studies show, those who write down their goals accomplish significantly more than those who do not write their goals.* Share yours with us today in the Commit to Fit form below!** You may even be featured in a future Commit to Fit post. Shown below, are some of our most recent members who have committed to their fitness goals.

Paige C.

Paige C. is working on toning up and shoulders! A goal can only be hit if you refuse to never give up!

Alicia H.

Alicia H. wants to keep active during her pregnancy! Way to go! Congratulations on your soon-to-be new addition.

Lucia F.

Lucia F. is maintaining her goal of keeping in shape – keep up the hard work! It pays off.

Ernst C.

Ernst C. wants to be a lean 260 lbs.! Nothing like hard work and determination to keep you focused on your goal, Erst – great job!

*Goals Research Summary conducted by Dr. Gail Matthews of the Dominican University of California, statistics retrieved, September 9, 2016.

**Selected submissions will be featured on the LA Fitness blog and possibly other LA Fitness digital media entities & websites. By making a submission, you hereby grant LA Fitness a non-exclusive, perpetual, worldwide, irrevocable license to use and make copies of the contents of such submission for any purpose and in any medium whatsoever, and you hereby waive and relinquish any copyright or other intellectual property right you may have in the contents of such submission and your right to pursue any claim for LA Fitness’s violation of those intellectual property rights   

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Member Spotlight | A Life-Changing Diagnosis

Member Spotlight | A Life-Changing Diagnosis

Julie W., of Phoenix, AZ, shared that in her “former” life she was a juvenile detention officer, PE teacher, and trainer/fitness instructor. Self-described as “being stronger than the average ‘joe’-sephine”, an aggressive Breast Cancer diagnosis threw this typically tough power woman into a spiral of depression and despair. Julie’s diagnosis couldn’t have come at a worse time, as she was already struggling with the recent loss of her two sisters, and now she was struggling for her own life.

Thankfully, the combination of surgery, chemotherapy and radiation worked. Unfortunately, it also resulted in a blood clot in Julie’s jugular, Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD), and Neuropathy. Separately, Julie was also struggling with Degenerative Disc Disease (DDD), arthritic joints, and anxiety and depression. Still, Julie was determined to not give up. In her words, “death is an obvious eventuality, but healthily growing older is a better prognosis.”

Before Julie’s diagnosis she was a heavy lifter who spent most of her spare time in the gym, staying active. Since then she has turned into a different type of gym-goer, knowing that movement and exercise are now mandatory for healthy living, and not just a fun pastime. Julie was almost forced into changing her fitness routine once she started undergoing treatments. While she was no longer able to focus on heavy weights, she turned her attention to enhanced cardio and increasing her flexibility.

LA Fitness group fitness classes became the perfect fit for what Julie needed. She shared that the classes offered her “cardio-vascular improvement, coordination and control, brain and muscle memory, musicality and performance artistry, emotional outlet, camaraderie and so much more.” She enjoys classes like Body Works classes and Yoga, but one class stood apart from the rest – Zumba®. Julie shared that Zumba® is one of the primary reasons why she’s made LA Fitness her second home.

In fact, Julie enjoys the classes so much that she travels to various LA Fitness clubs within the Phoenix area to follow some of her favorite instructors! She’s even enjoyed participating in LA Fitness Zumba® classes while on vacation in other states! Julie shared that trainers like Justin, Natalie, Briana and Treena, should be applauded for their personable demeanors, motivating attitudes and caring mindsets. Each of the Zumba® instructors she admires has their own unique flavor and talent that they bring to their classes.

“Come dance with me, what do you have to lose besides the weight?”

Justin R.

Group Fitness Instructor , LA Fitness

“Zumba® allows me to bring a little bit of joy into someone’s life, one dance step, one song, one class at a time.”

Treena B.

Group Fitness Instructor , LA Fitness

“Don’t work out to escape your life, work out to embrace your life.”

Brianna B.

Group Fitness Instructor , LA Fitness

“Music is the heartbeat to the soul.”

Natalie Q.

Group Fitness Instructor , LA Fitness

Julie found strength and fun in Zumba® group fitness classes. She found friends in some of the talented Zumba® instructors she’s met along the way, and she encourages everyone to try out a class near them. If Zumba® isn’t your cup of tea, there are plenty of other group fitness options to keep you active and feeling motivated. It’s a great way to keep in shape, have fun, and be encouraged from group fitness instructors. Find a class near you by clicking here!


Group fitness class schedules and offerings vary by location.

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