FitTec Tenets


te· net | \ ˈte-nətalso ˈtē-nət \

: a principle, belief, or doctrine generally held to be true

especially : one held in common by members of an organization, movement, or profession


These are some of our beliefs. This is not a complete list. We will be adding to them in 2021.


Our tenets are based on science based guidelines and best practices.


FitTec focuses on the latest wellness knowledge and its distribution, employing consistent, safe, effective wellness practices following accepted AHA, ACE, ACSM and NSCA guidelines. *

*American Heart Association (AHA), American Council on Exercise (ACE), American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM), and the National Strength and Conditioning Association (NSCA).



1. Strive to be healthy above all. Many people start off with the goal of being Fit. That is great goal, but you can not consider yourself Fit without being Healthy first. See I am Healthy Webpage to find out what it takes to be Healthy. Never sacrifice your health for a fitness or sport goal.


2. If you are looking to go beyond being healthy and want to elevate your fitness you should understand what being fit means. Most people do not have any idea what it means: Being Fit means that you have an above average/elevated level of physical ability in all the components of fitness. It would be great to strive to be fit, but meeting the healthy criteria is more important (see I am Healthy). You can understand your own fitness by doing self-assessments. If you are looking to get Fit see I am Fit. If you are striving to be extremely Fit see I am xFit. If you are looking to be functionally fit see our Functional Screen Test. If you are looking to see if your run times are healthy and fit see I am 5k (if you want to run safely see our 5K Training Program). If you are just interested in your muscular fitness see our Muscular Ability Screen.


3. You should never feel pain from exercise (before, during, and after): Some muscular soreness is common from exercise, but pain is a different story especially if it impacts your ability to move and function. If you do have pain reconsider your program. If you have some minor issues with pain please seek us out. We may be able to help. If it is more severe than this see your doctor. For more information about self-care techniques please see our Muscle and Joint Care Webpage.


4. Be kind to your body - use it but do not abuse it: You only have one body so use it properly and do not abuse it. If you do not use your body through activity and exercises you will lose physical ability. Movement can build your body up, but it can break it down if it is not the right type or too much. The same can be said about nutrition. Therefore, it is important to practice good principles such as performing restorative motions and stretches, having recovery days, eating a balanced diet, and getting quality sleep.


5. To the point of being kind to your body we typically do not recommend using a sport as a sole form of exercise to promote health: Use sports as a form of recreation. Most sports carries physical risks. If you are going to perform athletics make sure you condition and recover like the elite athletes do. They perform specific exercises that protect their body and allow them to perform better. Athletics does promote some aspects of fitness, but not all. Just do not think going out once or twice a week and playing your sport is enough for your health you should also follow a foundational fitness program that works on all aspects of your health and fitness. What is a foundational program? Ask us about exercises that will help you play your sport better and keep you safe.


6. If you do train make sure you have Recovery Days: Generally muscular conditioning should be done 2 to 3 days a week, aerobic exercise can be done 3 to 6 days a week through varied activities, and restorative stretches and motion can be done daily. Therefore make time in your week for recovery days. Walking or light activity is a good thing to do on recovery days. Palpate your muscles. If they are sore to the touch it is a good indicator you need additional recovery.


7. Make reasonable goals because they are most likely achievable and sustainable: Most people expectations are usually too high when it comes to fitness. A five percent improvement in your ability to physically perform every couple of weeks within a training program is a reasonable expectation when starting a program. Being able to do an extra push up is an example. Long term goals of being at an average to above average level on fitness norms are very reasonable and excellent goals.


8. Avoid Extremes when it comes to your health and fitness: When you follow any training or exercise program do not train to the extremes unless your sport or occupation depends on it. Typically training to the extremes creates physical issues that some people have a long time recovering from. If you have a goal that is great, but make sure you follow a safe plan that will assure success. Avoid any extreme fitness programs that causes pain, sacrifices good technique, and uses advanced and possibly dangerous exercises. The same holds true to your diet. You should follow the basic guidelines established from the A.N.D. ( Academy or Nutrition and Dietetics ). Fad and extreme diets are not in our vocabulary. For more about nutrition See Our Nutrition Information Page.


9. Do not use as exercise as a means to lose weight: Exercise will improve how you look and feel and it will change your body composition by increasing muscle mass, but it does not do a great job at helping you decrease body weight ( see article ). To lose weight it is more important to make your diet healthy and less in calories than what you are accustomed to. However, those who are successful in keeping their weight off according to the Weight Lose Registry combine both a sound diet and exercise for up to 60 minutes a day. So to take the weight off follow a healthy weight loss diet, but to keep it off you should perform aerobic exercise.


10. There is no one size fits all when it comes to your muscular fitness: Every body is different and age has something to say when it comes to fitness programming. As mention define your goals, assess your body for those goals, and build on the deficits you find in your assessment, while maintaining your strengths through an appropriate program. There are many tools in the fitness toolbox, but there are several primary movements and exercises which is usually part of most of our clients training and we refer to them as foundational: 1) Types of Squats 2) Types of Lunges 3) Types of Rows/Pulls 4) Types of Pushing (example: Push Ups) 5) Types of Core Exercises: Bridges, BirdDogs, SideBridges, and Planks. What is a foundational program?


11. Practice good posture: You can not be truly healthy and fit if you have poor posture. Poor posture wrecks havoc on your body (see article). There are four major postural keys that I stress such as head up and pulled back to prevent forward head posture, shoulders retracted and arms slightly externally rotated to prevent rounded shoulders, maintenance of the three natural curves of your spine while sitting and standing to prevent lordosis/swayback/kyphotic postures, and to keep knees bent (avoid locking them out). Learn more at Medline Plus.


12. Work on your posture should be a first major fitness goal: If you are starting an exercise program it is important that you do not just start doing any exercises on a body with poor posture. It could cause create problems. Example if you have rounded shoulders and started doing shoulder presses your poor posture could cause shoulder issues. Address your posture with postural changes and other good postural habits and incorporate exercises that both strengthen and stretch weakened and tightened areas, which are common with certain types of poor posture. Please seek us out to learn more about postural exercises. Going into a good posture position routinely conditions your body to adopt better posture. When you go into a good posture you stretch tight muscles and strengthen weak. Overtime you will attain the musculature tone to stay in a good posture.  


13. In conjunction with working on poor posture you should work on mobility as part of your first major fitness goal: Mobility is a combination of range of motion and proper movement where when you move your body it is aligned in a way that makes all the you do physically both safe and efficient. I have a daily moves program/restoration program that can help you do this.


14. Move Well (Remove Bad Movements): It is imperative that you lye, sit, stand, squat, twist, lunge, lift, walk, run, etc. with good form. Through removing poor movements and replacing them with good you can allow your body to recover and heal faster and set up good habits for a lifetime. All of which will allow you to perform better in the game of life. Brief examples: Sleep on your side or back trying to maintain the natural curves to your spine through use of pillows (see more). Sit with the three natural curves for no more than 20 minutes if you can. Stand on balls of feet, with bent knees, and weight evenly distributed. Squat by hinging from your hips keeping a neutral back and come up pulling through your hips by using your buttocks as the prime movers. Twist from your legs, and hips and never from your low back (twisting from the hips generates more power and protects the spine). As with the squat, never lift from you back, use your hips and keep back locked with the weight being lifted close to the body. Walk briskly using your arms with consistent strides. Run horizontally with very little vertical displacement with strides that have you landing lightly with your feet under your body.


15. Build a resilient body first through foundational movements and exercises: I am a firm advocate on using a simple foundational stretches, motions, and exercises that may look boring and simple, but will wreck dividends in the end. If you only go hard with just a few compound exercises your training may be building on structural deficits that may show its ugly head someday. If you are looking for fitness extremes then start with and as you progress continue with foundational exercises. What is a foundational program?


16. Stretching should be performed regularly, but it should not be the sole form of exercise. A fitness program should also entail muscular, aerobic, and functional exercises. Just doing stretching, as in Yoga, may do more harm than good. Creating mobility with the lack of stability can cause joint issues. Stability is created through a balance approach of muscular conditioning around the joint. It is also important to stress that certain stretches and some Yoga poses carries risk. Understand that risk and what they are before trying them. Generally speaking a stretch that places undue stress on the joint or extreme positions should be avoided. You should not have pain when you stretch. Lumbar spinal flexion and twisting should also be avoided as well as having your head below your waist due to ocular issues. Stretching/Yoga Training Keys: Never stretch or move into pain. When stretching move slowly going to first resistance barrier and hold. Let the stretch happen. Do not sacrifice final position over form. Try to keep head above waist and try not to flex or twist spine under tension. It is more advantageous to have a normal degree of flexibility versus being hyper-flexible. Aim for balance/symmetry throughout your body. Follow a program specific for your needs (posture, habits, weaknesses, sport). Understand all of this through a personal assessment. We can help you with that. See flexibility page.


17. Include strengthening with stretching in preventing tight muscles: In order to fully address tightness and tightness the use of tissue work and stretching is not enough. Much of the tightness is caused by weakness either within the muscle or around them or both. Therefore to reduce nagging sensations you should assess where weakness and lack of motion exists and then incorporate all three (tissue work both massage and use of releasing tools, stretches/motions, and strengthening exercises). Postural and movement issues should also be addressed.


18. If you are doing muscular training you should work to or towards momentary muscular failure using only good form on one or more sets of an exercise: Momentary Muscle Failure is cornerstone of muscular training and it is the point at which no more repetitions can be performed using proper form due to complete acute exhaustion of the muscles. I am not saying that all sets should be done this way, but to improve your muscular strength it should be incorporated into your program.


19. Aerobic Conditioning requires you to get out of your comfort zone at times. Get out of breath daily at points. If you are healthy and able to exercise (see PAR Q) you should try push yourself where you get out of breath momentarily at points when doing aerobic exercise. Studies have shown just seconds to minutes of high intensity interval training can bestow health benefits beyond what you get from steady state exercise like walking at the same pace. So spice it up when doing aerobic exercise with 20 seconds to 90 seconds of higher intensity aerobic exercise for one or more intervals. Just one session of climbing 4 flights of stairs shown benefits. Make sure you are warmed up before.


20. Make sure you understand what your goals are and what would be the best exercises and movements for those goals. If your goal is to be healthy follow our simple Daily Moves Program or our Foundation Exercise Program might be appropriate. Foundational exercises include Core, Gluteal, and Shoulder Stabilizing Exercises. If your goal is some type of athletics or physical pursuit you should follow a more specific program for that sport or physical pursuit, but it should include Foundational Exercises to assure a base of fitness.


21. Every exercise has a purpose and some can be dangerous for your fitness level even for the elite level. Doing an exercise because it looks cool is wasted effort and may lead to an injury. Try to know what is right for you. Example: Competitive Olympic and Power Lifts. Some people do not have the hip structure to get into the deep squat position that is required for these lifts.  Please see Olympic and Power Lifts section below. We have assessment tools that will help you understand what exercises are best for you and Master Lists of Muscular and Functional Exercises for beginner, intermediate, and advanced abilities. See Muscular Ability and Functional Ability Pages for Self-Tests and Exercise Lists. We also have a comprehensive list of what exercises to avoid/limit/modify (see list).


22. Good nutrition does not need to be complicated.

When it comes to good nutrition I point simply to the healthy plate by Harvard (see plate). It is so simple to understand. Plenty of fruits and veggies, healthy fats, and lean proteins. The complicated part is just doing it. Make a plan and go with it. I do not care if you eat the same meals over and over again. I do. As long as they are healthy I am fine with it. Learn more about nutrition at this page.


23. Calories matters when it comes to weight loss.

No matter how you cut it, chop it, serve it, say it, I do not care but calories will always be an important factor of dieting to lose weight. You can eat the healthiest diet in th world and not lose weight. Vice versa you can eat the worst diet in the world and lose weight (see Twinkee Diet).  Every single weight loss diet has you eating less calories. The key though is to make sure those calories are healthy so it sustains health and performance. See the healthy diet list on this page.


24. Make the times you eat work for you. I generally tell people to eat 3 healthy meals a day with a couple of snacks. This may not work for you. Some people do well with intermittent fasting where there is a short window of time, 6 hours in day, in most cases that you eat. Although this type of fasting works for some people I would not suggest it for athletes or those trying to build muscle.


25. Make sure whatever dietary practice that you follow is healthy and that you can sustain it for life. If you can not see yourself doing this for a year do not do it. What typically happens with some diets, especially very low carb diets, people tend to gain much of their weight back because they just can not sustain it. We never allow anyone go below 400 calories worth of carbs a day.Calories will always matter if you are trying to lose or gain weight

Do not let any one fool you. Mostly every single diet that I have looked into finds a way to get you to eat less calories. The good thing is that most healthy diets are loaded with fruits and veggies that give the diet more bulk and less calories than unhealthy ones. In so doing they make you feel full and you eat less, but if you eat too many calories from healthy foods you will can still gain weight. So it is important to know how many calories are right for you and how to incorporate the right amount into your own healthy plan. Just remember calories are calories. If you eat those in one meal (meal restriction), intermittent periods, or eight it doesn’t matter for most. What does matter is that you find something that is regular and manageable for you. That being said if you are working out hard you might find a single meal or intermittent approaches not as effective as eating regularly throughout the day.


26. Plan for the Rest of Your Life: If you can’t see yourself eating the same way the rest of your life find a better plan. The same could be said for your conditioning program for the most part.

This is a tenet of most good dietary approaches. Dieting successfully is going to involve changing. Some small and some big things to make it work. Everyone is different. I like to meet people where they are at and make small changes at first. It takes time, patience, and practice but in my experience this is the only way it works.


27. Supplements: They are not the answer. Supplements are add-ons to your diet. They are added to complete or enhance your diet. Supplements can be somewhat useful in a few cases, but as a whole I would say not to waste your money outside of a few cases that your doctor may recommend (see my supplement page).


28. Water is life: Water is crucial for daily good health and to perform at your best (see article). There is no consensus of the best amount. You have to find what is best for you. Try to consume enough water a day to keep your urine a pale color. I would also say to drink water every hour. Typical guidelines recommend eight glasses per day, though this varies from person to person. Those who exercise regularly, work outside, or have chronic medical conditions should consume more water to compensate for more water loss.


29. A diet can not be Healthy without Fruits and Veggies: I have not seen a scientific paper to disprove this. The omission of fruits and vegetables makes the body more prone to deficiencies and a plethora of diseases. Life expectancy drops in those who do not eat fruits and veggies.


30. Eat Healthy Protein Rich Foods, but there is no need to over do it: Excess protein can lead to health issues and weight gain. An inadequate amount can lead to muscle loss and other health issues. Find out what works best for you, but make sure you get an adequate amount. For most that is 15 to 30 grams with each meal if a person is having three meals a day. I typically recommend 20-30 grams.


31. Carbs should not be avoided, but embraced: As a health coach I can not and will not ever recommend to anyone less than 400 calories worth of carbohydrates a day. That amount is considered a low carb diet. I can understand that many low carb diet are at effective at weight loss but VERY low carb diets ( less than 400 calories from carbs ) leaves the body depleted and not able to function at its best. As mentioned Fruits and Veggies are key to a healthy diet. Mostly all of them are loaded with carbs either in the form or starch, simple sugars, or fiber or a combination of each. Whole grains provide healthy carbs as well as some essential vitamins and minerals (see MayoClinic).


32. You need to breathe to live, but to breathe right takes understanding and effort: The bottomline is that when you breathe try to breathe through the nose. There is strong evidence that this is extremely heathy. Even when you exercise, try to breathe through your nose and if needed out your mouth. You should never hold you breath when exercising even when weight lifting. Try to be mindful of your breathing throughout your day. It is also good to try to breathe from the diaphragm through what is know as belly breaths when you can ( this is known as Restorative Breathing ). See articles: Breath Nose, Breath Belly, and Breathing During Exercise.


33. You may think it does not matter, but Posture does matter. Think about it often. Protect the curves. Think about your posture when you can. Try to keep the natural curves to your neck, mid-back, and low back. They should be slight and not hyper-flexed. You should also try to keep your shoulders back and your head up. It is also a good idea when standing to stnad with knees bent and not locked.


34. a. Do not just do a sport as your only source of fitness. b. Do not do a sport unless you do conditioning for the sport. These two statements go hand and hand. I always tell people most sports can improve an aspect of fitness, but there are few if any which work on all aspects of your fitness therefore you need to do other fitness related activities to stay fit. In order to do better in your sport and prevent injury you should also follow a sport specific conditioning program. We can help you determine what you need to improve and to keep you healthy, fit, and pain-free for your sport and life.


35. Most sports carry injury risks. Become aware of them and be proactive by following a proper conditioning program.  We can help you determine what you need to to do to keep you healthy, fit, and pain-free for your sport and life.


36. Performance numbers are important in athletics but not as much as you think. Having the best numbers in the weight room or speed drills will not make you the best on the field, but generally speaking improving your capacity for a sport will help your performance and prevent injury. One study in the NFL found no consistent statistical relationship between combine tests and professional football performance (Study).


37. Stand when you can, but do not stand all the time. I always tell people to stand up and reach for the sky and take a deep breath after sitting for 20 minutes or more and to remain standing for at least 20 seconds to help nourish the spine. Standing is also good for a variety of other reasons, but do not stand all the time. A good ratio is 1:1 (Stand to Sit) or 4:1 Stand to Sit, so either 50% or 75% of the tie standing (Article).


38. An easy way to stay healthy is to eat a rainbow. The most vibrantly colored fruits and vegetables are the richest in vitamins, minerals, fiber and antioxidants. Fruits and vegetables get their coloration from phytochemicals, natural bioactive compounds which, in addition to giving many fruits and veggies their eye-catching hues, also promote good health.  (Article).


39. Eat Healthy Fats Dietary fats are essential for good health. Do not buy into that fat will make you fat. On the contrary, eating just carbs leads to eating more carbs because they do not satisfy as much as fats do. On top of that many key nutrients like fat soluble vitamins need dietary fat to be absorbed into your body. On top of that fat helps give your body energy, protects your organs, supports cell growth and keeps cholesterol and blood pressure under control. Current guidelines allow you to eat a very high percentage of calories from fat, which was not the case in the past. I would suggest keeping it between 25 to 35% of your calories to make room for healthy proteins (see above), fruits and veggies, and whole grains. Knowing the difference between healthy fats and unhealthy fats is a key. Read more at Harvard Health, but healthy fats are Unsaturated. There are two types: monounsaturated and polyunsaturated. Monounsaturated fats are found in avocados and peanut butter; nuts like almonds, hazelnuts, cashews, and pecans; and seeds, such as pumpkin, sesame, and sunflower seeds. It is also in plant oils, such as olive, peanut, safflower, sesame, and canola oils.  Besides heart health the benefit of eating more "good" fat and less "bad" fat is that this can keep the brain healthy, says Harvard Health. Studies have found a strong association between people who follow the MIND diet and a lower risk of Alzheimer's disease. The MIND diet advocates eating more of 10 certain foods and less of five others. Among the good ones are healthy-fat foods like nuts, fatty fish, and olive oil, while the bad ones — butter, cheese, red meat, pastries, and fried and fast foods — contain high amounts of saturated fat.


40. Eat Fiber (in most cases) Americans are under nourished when it comes to many nutitional components and fiber is one of them. The reason being is that they are found in fruits, veggies, whole grains, nuts, and seeds which Americans do not eat enough of. If a food is processed most likely it is low in fiber. It’s important to get the right amount fiber to keep your digestive system running smoothly. It also provides a lot of health benefits beyond digestion, such as help with weight loss and balancing gut bacteria. According to many health authorities women should try to eat at least 21 to 25 grams of fiber a day, while men should aim for 30 to 38 grams a day. Here's a look at how much dietary fiber is found in some common foods (say Mayo).


41. Stay Away from Added Sugar If you do not know this where have you been. The AHA suggests an added-sugar limit of no more than 100 calories per day (about 6 teaspoons or 24 grams of sugar) for most women and no more than 150 calories per day (about 9 teaspoons or 36 grams of sugar) for most men. There's no nutritional need or benefit that comes from eating added sugar. Natural sugar from veggies and fruit are not added sugar. I would say to stay away from juice even though it comes 100% from fruit because the healthy fiber has been removed from the fruit to make juicel Sugar comes in many forms and names. Here is the list to avoid: more than 60, if we’re talking about what’s listed on nutrition labels. Here are a few of them.

          Brown sugar

          Corn sweetener

          Corn syrup

          Rice syrup

          Dextrose

          Maltose

          Barley malt

          Fructose sweetener

          Fruit juice concentrates

          Glucose 

          High-fructose corn syrup

          Honey

          Invert sugar

          Lactose

          Maltose

          Malt syrup

          Maple syrup

          Molasses

          Pancake syrup

          Raw sugar

          Sucrose

          Trehalose

          Turbinado sugar



42. Stay away from Red and Processed Meats According to Harvard Health the accumulated body of evidence shows a clear link between high intake of red and processed meats and a higher risk for heart disease, cancer, diabetes, and premature death. The evidence is consistent across different studies (see article). Some kinds of red meat are not necessarily healthier. There are no firm studies that have shown nutritional or health advantages from eating organic or grass-fed beef. These types of red meat are often more desirable as they contain low or no growth hormones compared with grain-fed beef. If you have to eat it some health authorities suggest to limit consumption to no more than about three portions per week. Three portions is equivalent to about 350–500g (about 12–18oz) cooked weight. Consume very little, if any, processed meat.


43. Try to have Fatty Fish if you can. According to many highly cited and accepted health sites oily fish, fatty fish are the best sources of two of the three most important omega-3s (EPA and DHA). These fatty acids are considered the good fats, unlike the bad saturated fats in meat. They may deliver huge health benefits for your heart, brain, lungs, and circulation. Oily fish is rich in omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids, which have been shown to reduce inflammation and potentially lower the risk of heart disease, cancer, and arthritis. Both white and oily fish are good sources of lean protein. Oily fish such as salmon, tuna, sardines, mackerel, and trout are full of omega-3 fatty acids..


44. Besides conditioning your big muscle condition the smaller stabilizing muscles. Stabilizing muscles are  important muscles for support and posture. If you have strong and balanced stabilizing muscles you most likely have proper posture and alignment, which means possible decreased pain and risk of injury.

In any movement, stabilizer muscles act to stabilize one joint so the desired movement can be performed in another joint. These muscles usually aren't directly involved in a movement, but work to keep you steady so that your primary muscles can do their job. The CORE is the most well known stablizing muscle system around your trunk and hips. Other stablizing muscles work around other joints like the rotator cuff muscles as well as the muscles that wrap around the knee and ankle. I spend a lot of time making sure the my clients have a stable and balanced stablizers to assure that the exercises they do will not cause harm.


45. Take care of your feet. Feet are your body's foundation, so keeping them healthy is vital to your overall health. Years of wear and tear can be hard on your feet. Overuse, shoes that don't fit properly, and even genetics can lead to injuries and disorders of the foot that can greatly impact your mobility.You need to do things that will strengthen your feet as well as following proper foot care. Here are some Basic Care Items from WebMed

     1     Check them daily for cuts, sores, swelling, and infected toenails.

     2     Give them a good cleaning in warm water, but avoid soaking them because that may dry them out.

     3     Moisturize them every day with lotion, cream, or petroleum jelly. ...

     4     Avoid wearing tight-fitting shoes. ...

     5     Skip the flip-flops and flats.

     6     Rotate your shoes so you’re not wearing the same pair every day.

     7     rim your toenails straight across with a nail clipper. Then use an emery board or nail file to smooth the corners, which will prevent the nail from growing into your skin.


46. Work on your balance? I can not get over what poor balance most people have. It is a true sign of overall fitness and function. It is so important to have a swe age. Balance exercises are part of all my training programs. I personally incoporate them into my own training. ( see more about balance and functional training here ). According to Athleco improving your balance has shown a lot of promise in being able to prevent injuries for a wide range of people. For athletes, balance work is associated with a dramatically lower risk of injury. Just one sprained ankle will predispose you to future ankle sprains for life, but regular balance work can decrease your risk of a sprain by nearly 40%. For the elderly, improved balance could prevent a fall, which is the cause of over 90% of all hip fractures–one of people’s most life-altering (and shortening) injuries.



47. Know these important numbers (1). Waist Circumference


48. Know these important numbers (2). Blood Pressure


49. Know these important numbers (3). Heart Rate


50. Know these important numbers (4). A1C


51. Know these important numbers (5). LDL