MARINE CORPS AIR STATION BEAUFORT, S.C. -- The holidays may seem to have been here only yesterday, but with summer approaching, it’s time to get in shape for the beach, summer sports or the semi-annual Physical Fitness Test.
Whether it’s to shed pounds, improve strength or just look and feel better, Semper Fit has a team of professionals available on-base, to provide Marines, sailors and family members the support they need to achieve their goals.
“We offer educational classes, group fitness classes, individual fitness assessments and personal training,” said Crystal Dilliard, a certified clinical exercise specialist and branch head of Semper Fit Health Promotion and Physical Fitness. “These services are free for active duty personnel, Department of Defense employees, retirees and family members.”
Individuals interested in learning about nutrition may attend a one-hour nutrition class held monthly by Semper Fit at various locations around the Air Station.
“The class provides an overview of nutrition and explains how to determine energy balance and healthy body composition,” Dilliard said. “It provides information on eating for optimal health and physical performance.”
Next, a three-day dietary recall is required for those interested in setting up an individual consultation with a Semper Fit health and fitness professional.
Individuals are directed to keep a record of everything they eat and drink for three days to help serve as a basic tool to review their eating habits, Dilliard explained.
Once a participant has completed the nutrition class and the three-day recall, Semper Fit reviews the information with them and uses it as a starting point to focus on improving parts of their diet.
“We provide useful suggestions to improve their eating habits,” Dilliard said. “Attending the class and completing the recall is simple, but it is up to the individual to maintain those habits and we are here to support them.”
Semper Fit’s program addresses calories and nutrients and utilizes the new U.S. Department of Agriculture Food Guide Pyramid, which assists in determining a person’s required caloric intake and provides menu options.
A person’s diet affects their overall health, according to Nikki Ginn, a Semper Fit health educator. It takes a balanced diet and exercise together to build a healthy body.
Besides help with nutrition, Semper Fit also provides a personal trainer program. To enroll, stop by the Semper Fit office at the Fitness Center here and fill out a Personal Trainer Packet.
Once the packet is filled out, a personal trainer will contact the individual to set up a fitness assessment, Ginn explained.
“A personal trainer can determine the fitness level for an individual based on the assessment and their individual goals,” Dilliard said. “An exercise program is then developed and implemented, including a demonstration of equipment for strength and cardio and the proper form and techniques for all exercises.”
The personal trainer will work with clients through their workout sessions to monitor and encourage their progress and to ensure they continue to perform the exercises correctly.
All the exercise programs are designed by the personal trainer to fit the needs of the individual, based on their goals and ability, Ginn said.
“It has been really great working with the trainer,” said Lance Cpl. Vincent Sabolik, an avionic communication and navigation technician with Marine Aviation Logistics 31. “Anyone can benefit from a personal trainer, no matter what shape they’re in.”
Personal trainers are available during regular business hours based on their current appointment schedule.
“We are hiring and training more staff and are looking forward to providing more night and weekend classes,” Dilliard said.
Editor’s note: This is the second story in a three-part series focused on nutrition, running in March in honor of National Nutrition Month.