Fitness Food and You
Promoting Balance and Lifestyle Changes to Stay Healthy
Welcome to Fitness, Food and You! My name is Rhonda Markman, and I am a certified personal trainer (ACE) and nutritionist (DTR), who is passionate about empowering clients to make lifestyle changes to stay healthy. I practice in Westchester, NY, where you can see me for personal training, fitness classes, and/or nutritional counseling. I do not believe in a single approach to diet and exercise that will work for everyone. Instead of making many changes all at once that are difficult to sustain, I would rather introduce small, gradual changes that produce lasting results. My strength is taking a holistic approach with clients and figuring out what works for people on an individual basis.
Including exercise as part of your daily life is not easy. Thinking about making the commitment to exercise is often harder than actually doing it. Everyone has a different idea of what works for them: some of my clients love going to the gym, others only want to take fitness classes, some need to exercise in their home, while others need to be outdoors.
The key is to figure out what works best for you. Once you do that, you need to make the commitment to do it on a regular basis. Initially, it doesn’t matter what you do, as long as you do it consistently. Once you’ve established a routine for a month or two, you can focus on taking exercise to the next level. This might sound daunting, but I can introduce you to new ways of exercising that aren’t overwhelming.
Why I love weight training.....
Weight training builds muscle for both men and women but it is especially important for women’s bones. As women age, they lose estrogen, which protects bones. Weight training keeps our bone density healthy and keeps our metabolism raised. Often I hear people say “Well, it’s getting harder and harder for me to lose weight because I’m getting older.” Why is that? It’s because we slow down and lose muscle mass as we age. If we do weight training and build muscle tissue, we will stay metabolic. Muscle, at rest, burns calories. Fat doesn’t. There is no reason for us to slow down and lose muscle!
Food is fascinating to me because it’s both simple and complicated. When you look at food scientifically, you can see that the macronutrients, protein, fat and carbohydrates, serve a specific function in the body. However, food is more than science: It gives us great pleasure, it affects how we feel, and virtually every social function revolves around it.
Food can get us into a lot of trouble—especially when we develop bad habits. Breaking the cycle is very challenging, but it can be done. The first step is to try and figure out what works and doesn’t work for you. The next step is to make very gradual changes in your diet so that you can be successful. Too many changes at once usually lead to failure.
This is the most important factor in a healthy lifestyle. You already have the answers to your exercise and food issues—it’s my job to bring them to the surface.
If you are looking for a regimented exercise and diet plan—a one-size-fits-all guideline—then my approach is not right for you. I don’t believe in quick fixes, cleanses, fad diets or any kind of rapid weight loss. Instead, I believe that both diet and exercise need to be highly individualized. For example, some people know a lot about nutrition but can’t seem to make changes in their diet. For those clients, we need to brainstorm and have specific behavior modification strategies. Others simply don’t know the basics of a healthy diet; they need education. No matter what the issue, the key is to change your way of thinking from short to long term. We are in this for the long haul because that’s what making lifestyle changes are all about.
I also believe that when you achieve your goals, the success will be yours, not mine. That’s why my favorite expression is “GO YOU!” I can give you the tools but you are going to have to make it happen for yourself. It’s hard work, but you can do it!
I have always exercised, but for many years I did it on my own. Years ago, I met a personal trainer and began working out with him. The only equipment I had in my home was a chair and some free weights, but somehow it worked. Gradually I got the urge to impart what I was learning to others and decided to become a personal trainer myself.
In 2004, while living in London, I became a certified personal trainer through the YMCA Fitness Industry Training. When I moved back to New York in 2006, I got re-certified with the American Council on Exercise (ACE). As I got older, I began to make the connection between health and lifestyle, especially with regard to diet. Since personal trainers do not have expertise in food and nutrition, I decided to go back to school to study dietetics. Specifically, I wanted to learn about how healthy eating could prevent chronic diseases. I graduated from SUNY, WCC in 2011 with an AAS in nutrition.
I love watching people get stronger, going for long bike rides with my husband, and growing a vegetable garden. Summer is my favorite season!
Rhonda tailors workouts to the individual. She pushes me and makes it fun & challenging. She’s also great to run any diet/nutrition questions by. We talk through the whole session and it goes by quickly- I don’t even know I’m working so hard until later when I’m sore! The time I spend with her is often the highlight of my week!
Cheerful and upbeat, so you hardly notice how hard you are working out!! She has uncanny ability to know just how many reps you can do. Love her!
Rhonda Markman is the best thing you can do for yourself. Not only is she an extraordinarily talented trainer, she will train you while listening to and advising you on your personal challenges, tell you hilarious stories, and make you feel better about yourself. You will be sad when the session is over and psyched to return.
I have trained with Rhonda for over six years and during that time I have lost over twenty pounds, lowered my blood pressure and blood sugar, and gained an intelligent, intuitive, compassionate, funny friend.
A terrific listener - totally focused and driven to make the session interesting, personalized and productive. I never dread my sessions and I am someone who never really exercised before. She inspires - does not judge - and you always feel she is rooting for you in all aspects of life and wants you to be the very best you!
I do not like to exercise at all, but I've been taking Rhonda's group fitness classes for several years because Rhonda is an awesome trainer. Rhonda exercises along with the group while keeping an eye on everyone. When someone needs to be corrected so they get the optimum benefit from an exercise, Rhonda doesn't single the person out. She makes a gentle statement of re-instruction to the entire class where everyone performs at their own pace.
Rhonda knows her stuff when it comes to fitness and nutrition and she's generous in sharing her knowledge during class and in her blog. She's fun, not intimidating and caring, not preachy. She is just what I look for in a trainer.
I have worked out with Rhonda for approximately 10 years in both group exercise classes and now weekly private training sessions. I don't think there is a nutritionist or trainer out there that could top her knowledge of both subjects, skills, commitment and enthusiasm for her clients. Her key talent is developing insight into how each person physically and mentally functions in order to come up with a personalized plan for them that allows them to succeed. She recognizes that each person is unique; both physically and mentally, and works closely with you to achieve goals in a positive and supportive way. Her patience is legendary and her commitment to her clients can't be beat. I strongly recommend her to anyone seeking better health and happiness through diet and exercise.
Rhonda is fantastic. I have weight trained privately with Rhonda Markman for 5 years and never felt better. I look forward to my weekly appointment. She's kind, passionate and informative. Very reasonable rates and amazing results.