TheFort Myers CityScoop

Pilates News
Fort Myers, FL

Fort Myers, FL – 15 Tips For Looking And Feeling Better Than You Have In Years

SYNOPSIS: Right now I’m going to reveal to you the 15 essential strategies that have enabled my clients to achieve these important goals. These simple strategies can be implemented into your lifestyle.

15 Tips For Looking And Feeling Better Now

BY: Shannon Willits, Shannon Willits - Movement Arts Pilates Fort Myers

Shannon Willits is certified through the advanced levels of STOTT PILATES®Do you want to improve the quality of your life?

Do you want to look and feel better than you have in years – maybe better than you ever have before?

Do you want to protect yourself from disease and injury? And do you want to live a longer, more vital life?

I’m confident that you answered YES! to each of those questions, just as have the thousands of individuals I’ve counseled, coached and trained in my career as a Certified STOTT PILATES Trainer and Functional Fitness expert.

Right now I’m going to reveal to you the 15 essential strategies that have enabled my clients to achieve these important goals.

These simple strategies can be immediately implemented into your lifestyle with little sacrifice on your part (okay, if not eating artery clogging fast food burgers and fries is a big thing for you, then maybe you won’t look at that sacrifice as “easy,” but I guarantee you it will add quality years to your life).

So let’s get right into it.

“How To Get Maximum Weight Loss, Core-Strength & Fitness Results In Minimum Time”

  1. In the beginning, your fitness plan should not be overly aggressive. One of the biggest problems most people encounter when starting a fitness program is rapidly depleted motivation after only a few weeks due to an overly ambitious fitness plan. Two days per week of 20-minute cardiovascular exercise (walking, jogging, biking, swimming); and two days per week of light resistance training is adequate in the beginning. As you become acclimated to the lifestyle “shift” you can add more days and get improved results. But beware: if you try to do too much too fast, you may end up quitting altogether. If you’ve tried and failed doing it alone, then I suggest you get a training partner or a personal trainer who will help you sustain your motivation.
  2. If your goal is fat-loss, then your cardiovascular exercise should include high-intensity interval training (HIIT). High-Intensity Interval training is a great way to boost your cardio routine. Alternating brief speed and recovery intervals will increase the overall intensity of your workout, while also keeping it very safe. This technique may help you lose fat and improves your heart health. Getting your heart rate up improves your metabolism, helps to burn fat, and improve your health, putting many healthy years on your life, in addition to the added benefit of making you look and feel better.
  3. Don’t waste your time working isolated muscles. If you don’t enjoy doing resistance training or are pressed for time, concentrate on working functional, tri-planar, multi-joint movements instead of doing single muscle exercise, which will leave you prone to poor posture and injury. When I see overweight people doing lateral raises or biceps curls, I wonder why. It’s generally just a lack of understanding of how their bodies work. Most people want to lose fat and tone and firm their bodies. The way to do that is to use resistance (weights, springs, bands, kettle bells, medicine balls, body-weight) to train movements that incorporate the core, the stabilizers and the large muscles synergistically. The idea is to work movement from the inside out. Great exercises for the legs are squats or lunges. Incorporating a rowing action with the arm to the lunge incorporates the core and the upper body (a trainer should help you with proper form and then monitor you during the exercise). This is an example of functional, tri-planar movement, which means they incorporate multiple muscle groups. Very efficient!
  4. Always, always, always incorporate Flexibility! Flexibility improves blood flow, muscle recovery, low back pain and a host of other things. Additionally, flexibility training can prevent injury, help you sleep better and improve your performance in all sports. Always incorporate flexibility training, but be certain to always stretch warm muscles. It’s important to warm up the body prior to stretching. However, it is very important that you know how to functionally stretch. Movement based stretches are best
  5. Never, ever do a traditional sit-up. Unless you are a super athlete with an incredibly well-developed midsection, sit-ups can lead to a strained lower back and possible lumbar spine injuries. But it gets worse. Rather than hitting your abdominal section, sit-ups can shift exercise tension to your hip-flexors – which defeats the purpose. There is so much misinformation about how to strengthen tone and firm the midsection, it’s almost frightening. It is very difficult to learn proper abdominal exercise technique by reading about it or watching it demonstrated on a video. You need to do it with supervision and get feedback about your form from a knowledgeable source. And keep in mind that you use your abdominal muscles in almost every single movement you make. Strengthening your abdominal region is the single most effective way to prevent or recover from, low back injury.
  6. Set realistically attainable goals. You must have tangible, quantifiable, short-term and long-term goals for your fitness program so you can gauge your progress. It’s crucial to have a “baseline” before you begin, so you can measure success. Your personal trainer can give you a complete analysis (don’t be shy – you need this!) that will aid you or your trainer in developing a personalized fitness program which addresses your particular needs. Having goals, particularly short-term goals, allow you to track your progress and keep you motivated when times are tough and you don’t feel like exercising. Keeping a journal of your cardio and resistance training workouts, as well as tracking what you eat is truly a fitness success “secret.” Just remember that your goals should be realistic and attainable. The best way for you to understand what is realistic and attainable for you is to talk to a fitness professional – not to buy into the “hype” of infomercials, diet and fitness products that blatantly mislead.
  7. Set exercise appointments with yourself. Use your day-timer, I phone calendar, mirror in the bathroom – whatever! – and then stick to it! You wouldn’t miss a business meeting or client appointment, would you? So don’t miss your exercise appointment with yourself. Nothing is more important than your health. Nothing! Everything else will crumble around you if your health goes south. So make your exercise appointments a priority. If you find it difficult to keep these appointments, then consider hiring a personal trainer who will hold you to your commitment. When you have money invested, and someone waiting for you to show up – you are much more likely to actually show up!
  8. Remember the benefits of exercise. Remember that feeling of euphoria you experienced after a particularly good workout? You experienced that feeling because the most powerful “feel good” drug in the world – endorphins – are coursing through your veins. If there is a panacea, it’s exercise. Nothing feels better than the post workout high you experience. Revel in that feeling! Let it wash over you and truly experience it. Etch that feeling into your brain. It will fuel your motivation on those inevitable days when you just don’t feel like exercising. Being physically fit affects every single aspect of your life: you sleep better, eat better, love better, overcome stress better, work better, communicate better, and live better!
  9. Include 3D Core Stability work into your program. So much time is wasted doing, at best, unproductive exercise, or at worst, dangerous exercise. Get educated on how to exercise correctly. And the absolute best way to do that is to hire an instructor to develop a program that includes 3D Core Stability.  Statistics prove that those who understand how to exercise correctly, get better, faster results. Core Stability is the foundation of a healthy functioning and performing body. Isn’t that what we all want – to look, feel and perform better?
  10. Educate yourself. It is important that you train with a purpose. Otherwise you’re just going through the motions and are at risk for an injury or a potential overuse syndrome. An investment in education is never a waste! Be it a time investment, effort or monetary. Don’t fight it! Make exercise your personal priority. Learn everything you can from a reliable, documented, tested source. Don’t buy in to all of the hype and quick fix solutions.
  11.  Americans eat too many processed, refined foods. I’m not advocating high protein, high saturated fat diet that you hear so much about (frankly, it’s dangerous). But I am advocating minimizing your intake of bread, pasta, white rice, boxed dinners (boxed anything really!), chips, cookies and of course sugary drinks. These foods are also addictive. The more cookies you eat, the more you want. The bulk of your carbohydrates should come from whole grains, vegetables and fruit. 
  12. Eat a Plant-Based Diet. If you’re trying to lose weight and/or reduce fat, simply eliminate animal based foods like meat, cheese, and dairy completely from your diet. AND sugar! Yikes! That stuff is addictive and will make you fat. Center your meal planning around the salad or the vegetable instead of the meat. Either eliminate the meat completely or make it a small side portion. Your heart will thank you and your thighs will shrink!
  13. Never, ever skip breakfast. If you want to maximize your fitness results or fat-loss efforts, you’ve got to eat breakfast. Even if you don’t exercise at all – breakfast is important. Your breakfast should contain whole grains and complex carbohydrates.  A great breakfast is a high-quality green drink, oatmeal (not the prepackaged, presweetened kind) with a little natural sweetener like stevia and some berries. 
  14. Drink plenty of fresh, clean water. Yes, I know that you’ve heard this over and over again. But there’s a reason for that – it’s the gospel truth! The Golden Rule for water intake is half your body weight in ounces. For example someone 120 pounds should consume 60 ounces of water per day. When you are exercising, you need to drink even more. Over 75% of your body is water (even bone is more than 20% water). When you don’t drink enough water, and substitute diuretics like coffee, tea and caffeinated sodas, you dehydrate your body, your blood doesn’t flow properly and your digestive system doesn’t operate smoothly (among other problems). Even a small deficit of water can radically affect how your body performs. Here’s a good rule of thumb: if your urine is a dark yellow and/or has a strong odor, you’re not drinking enough water. Drink up!
  15. Eat regularly throughout the day. Fasting or overly restrictive diets will enable you to lose weight – in the short run. Because the weight you lose is primarily water weight and lean muscle mass. But in the long-run, it has exactly the opposite effect you want. When you restrict your diet, your body instinctively thinks it’s being starved and shifts into a protective mode by storing fat. Energy expenditures are fueled by your lean muscles. Therefore your body fat remains essentially the same and you lose vital fluids and muscle instead. The less muscle you have, the slower your metabolism becomes, and the less fat you burn.

There you have it!  Fifteen essential strategies for an effective health & fitness program that will have you looking and feeling better than you have in years – maybe ever!

I realize that starting (or re-starting) a productive and effective health and fitness program is not easy. That is why I encourage you to get help.

If you’re sick, you go to the doctor. If you’ve got a tax problem, you see and accountant (or an attorney!). Have a toothache? You’re off to the dentist. Leaky pipes result in a call to the plumber. So why is it that so many people attempt to solve their health and fitness problems without consulting an expert? I don’t know exactly, but I encourage you to make the investment in yourself – in your quality of life – by hiring a qualified professional to educate you and help you get started…

…because the hardest part is just getting started and sustaining your motivation until fitness becomes habitual.  Once you develop the habit, which can take as little as thirty days, your whole life will change for the better.

If I can be of any assistance to you, please don’t hesitate to call me. I’m happy to speak with you and give you my recommendations without any sales pressure (I don’t like it when people try to “sell” me, so I wouldn’t try that on you). — Shannon Willits, Master Club Pilates Trainer, Fort Myers, Estero, Cape Coral, FL

“Best Pilates Instructor in Fort Myers, FL”

Top Rated Local Pilates Workout Classes / Studios / Programs / Services

Lee County: Fort Myers, Cape Coral, Estero, Bonita Springs, Naples, FL


“Best Pilates Instructor in Fort Myers, FL”

Top Rated Local Pilates Workout Classes / Studios / Programs / Services

Lee County: Fort Myers, Cape Coral, Estero, Bonita Springs, Naples, FL

CityScoop is the top ranked local business news network in the United States. Established in 2008, CityScoop has been providing local communities with high quality news about local businesses and their most recent projects.

About Cityscoop


Profile Avatar Click to view Author Bio

Shannon Willits

Shannon Willits - Movement Arts Pilates Fort Myers

Leave a message

Please wait...


13211 McGregor Boulevard,
Fort Myers, FL 33919, USA

(Get Directions)

13211 McGregor Boulevard,
Fort Myers, FL 33919, USA



BIO: I have personally experienced the benefits of Pilates and The MELT Method along with functional, core-based movement to overcome my own overuse injuries. It is through my experience that I share with my clients the knowledge that with hydrated and toned connective tissue and correct movement you can achieve results of a strong, fluid, balanced body that is pain-free and moves with ease.


Fort Myers, FL – 15 Tips For Looking And Feeling Better Than You Have In Years