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JCC Blog

JCC Blog

Tag: Exercise

Jan22
Bodybuilder Yaakov at the J
BODYBUILDING 101: The Importance of Discipline and Diet

There are a lot of benefits to taking up bodybuilding but quick results are not one of them, at least not according to JCC trainers and veteran bodybuilders Yaakov Bar Am and Abbie Friedberg. The way Yaakov and Abbie tell it, bodybuilding requires tremendous self-discipline and meticulous nutrition, years of hard work to start getting the results you want, and even more hard work to maintain those results once they do start showing up.

“You have to want to do it,” Abbie says. “First and foremost, you have to have the drive to do it because it’s a huge commitment. It’s like with any sport: just to go through the motions of doing it, it won’t get you to where you need to be, you really need to have that drive to get up there and do it.”

At least during competition season, Abbie says the source for that drive is...

JCC Members Become Fitness Trainers

Much of the appeal of the Jewish Community Center of Greater Baltimore is right there in our name: Community. That’s especially the case for the Fitness Center, where many of our instructors and trainers started out as JCC members. Here are the stories of three of those members who made the jump to the other side of the gym.

Shelly Cohen

Shelly Cohen originally became a JCC member to take advantage of membership discounts on her children’s camps and after-school programs. When Laura Fink, an instructor she was taking several fitness classes with, suggested Shelly become a BODYPUMP™ instructor herself, she initially laughed the idea off. “I thought she...

Apr28
Dumbbell Weights
Evan Huckfeldt Story

Evan Huckfeldt Before and AfterBy Alex Holt

By the time Evan Huckfeldt walked into Fitness Director Raychel Setless’s office at the Rosenbloom Owings Mills JCC in November 2015, he already knew why, when, and where he wanted to lose weight.

Why, because after only a few months of working at Stevenson University as a residential director, a diet of fast food and cafeteria cuisine had pushed his weight up to 265 pounds. 

When, because he wanted to weigh less than 200 pounds within seven months of joining the Rosenbloom Owings Mills JCC as a member.

Where, because as a...

Mar29
Terra Core Machines
by admin
Great Renovations

Keep your eyes peeled for great renovations, upgrades and improvements to the Rosenbloom Owings Mills Locker Rooms, Fitness Center and Shapiro Aquatics Park. Look for that sparkle, shine, and hard core fitness equipment - you will not be able to miss it!

Locker Rooms

As many of you know, Women’s Locker Room renovations are underway; the locker room will reopen March 29. (Our co-ed family changing room and alternative women’s locker room by the group fitness studio are available during this time. Both have private shower facilities.

Men’s Locker Room renovations will begin March 29 and continue through mid-May (the alternative...

Feb13
Hal Gotoff
Feeling fit, feeling fine

At 94, rocket scientist Hal Gotoff’s looking active and athletic 

Harold L. “Hal” Gotoff joined the JCC when he was 43 years old, in 1965. Today, at 94 years, Hal’s working-out strong.

A fitness advocate, Hal recalls his earliest days as a member, jogging four miles up and down the Weinberg Park Heights JCC corridor with his buddies, doing push-ups, sit-ups, jumping jacks, squats.

For 15 years at the Weinberg J, Hal served as a low impact aerobics instructor, and in 1995, he was awarded the JCC Man-of the Year for his dedication and leadership.

According to Weinberg JCC Fitness Supervisor Denard Smith, “Hal is an inspiration and testament to anyone who takes fitness seriously.”

Hal’s work out is more focused and more consistent than some...

Dec12
Pickleball Fever Hits the J

J is Training Grounds for Sr. Olympic Pickleball Champion

Not every member of the J knows that the Rosenbloom Owings Mills JCC is home to a vibrant Pickleball community. Few know, as well, that in Dr. Andrew Purcell, we actually have a Senior Olympic Pickleball Champion in our midst.

Pickleball is one of the fastest growing sports in the world, and is extremely popular among seniors. Invented in the 1960’s in Washington State, Pickleball is a racquet sport, like badmitton, tennis, and ping pong.

You can play...

A Faster Road to Recovery

JCC Member Neil Shaffer Strengthens Two “New Knees” 

Long time JCC Member Neil Shaffer has had four arthroscopic knee surgeries and two total knee replacements in the last 6 years, yet that doesn’t deter him from getting out to the J’s fitness centers four to five times a week.

Neil’s injuries occurred over the course of time, through wear and tear. He’s been determined to get things back as best as he can, knowing his new knees may degenerate as well.

A former runner, basketball and softball player, Neil is thrilled to do his elliptical, ride the bike, and walk the treadmill routine. He gives great credit to his orthopedist, Dr. Jon Koman, and his JCC Personal Trainer, Sivan Fagan, for...

Listening to His Body

Antoine Griffin Goes After His Health and Fitness Goals 

Antoine Griffin is coming off an “exceptional workout”: after going at it for nearly three hours he’s feeling a mix of energized and exhausted, and pumped.

Antoine works out with the J’s very own Harold Harris on Mondays and Wednesdays, but today, a Friday, he worked out on his own. (He typically works out six days a week, including a long distance swim).

Since April of 2015, when he first joined the J, Antoine has dropped from a 44” waist to a 34” waist. He originally weighed 269 pounds then dropped 76lbs. to his current weight of 193. He is 8lbs. shy of his goal weight of 185.

A Baltimore native, Antoine joined...

Apr12
A “Toni” Transformation

JCC Member Toni Greenberg’s Journey to Better Health 

It began on March 7, 1987. I was getting dressed to attend my friend's wedding. I hadn't worn anything fancy in a year or two. Nothing in my closet fit. I was furious — at myself, at my clothes, at my weight. I had to ask a neighbor to borrow a dress. 

All through my childhood, teen years and for most of my 20's, I was thin. I didn't realize just how much weight I had gained in the past two or three years.

The next morning, I drove to Pikesville and attended my first Weight Watchers meeting. Ina Bronfein was the leader of the class. She saw how...

Mar21
by admin
Introducing Blake Piesto

J Fitness Team Member Muscles 407lbs off the Ground

J Fitness Team Member Blake Piesto has been coming to the JCC of Greater Baltimore since the age of five. In many ways, he is your classic J Kid. He attended preschool here, Kids Center after school, and every summer, he attended J Camps.

The difference between Piesto then and Piesto now is incredible. For starters, he’s stronger.

At 26 years of age and holding in the 130lb. weight class, Piesto recently deadlifted 407 lbs. to become a USA Powerlifting Champion.

407 lbs. is a lot of weight!

The thrill of winning the championship Piesto describes as “awesome, a rush, and totally exhilarating.”

In his earlier J days, Piesto...