Meriden Fitness and Nutrition Experts Give Tips to Start a Healthy New Year


MERIDEN – One of the most popular New Year’s resolutions is weight loss, but people tend to go off the rails quickly.

We’ve spoken to experts in the nutrition and fitness industry to help you set realistic lifestyle goals for 2022.

Carrie Marquardt, director of health and wellness at YMCA Meriden-New Britain-Berlin, said that “the best way to be successful is to set small goals.”

She explained that people start the year wanting to do it all at once, cutting down on calories, exercising, and forgoing cigarettes and soda, which often ends up failing.

She suggested starting with one thing at a time, such as making better choices when it comes to eating.

After successfully completing the first objective, other objectives can be added.

Esmeralda “Annie” O ‘Farrill is a fitness and crossfit trainer at the Meriden YMCA.

She is also a student at Southern Connecticut State University, majoring in Sports Science and a minor in Nutrition.

O ‘Farrill, who was born in Puerto Rico, said food is a very cultural thing.

“You can’t tell a person who grew up eating bread and rice not to eat bread and rice because that’s their culture, that’s how they relate,” he said. she declared.

She explained that it is better not to give up food but to have a limited quantity according to the objective of each one.

She said some people try to give up an entire food group like carbohydrates and that doesn’t always work because the body needs these nutrients and people end up having food cravings.

For O ‘Farrill, it is important to consult a professional before making any drastic changes to his diet.

O’Farrill noted that choosing brown rice over white rice, sweet potatoes over regular potatoes, and whole grain bread over white bread, are all small but positive changes that people can start. to incorporate into their diet.

O’Farrill said she was nearly 100 pounds overweight, something she mastered after hiring a personal trainer.

She said these little changes are what put her on the path to becoming a healthier person.

When it comes to supplements, she said people should be careful, research them, and seek professional advice. In addition, the supplements should be consumed with a healthy diet and exercise.

Dr. William Lunn, professor at Southern, is one of the people she learned from about supplements and nutrition.

Social networks play a big role in body image. O’Farrill said people should be careful not to believe everything they see on social media, as influencers normally try to sell a product.

Marquardt said exercise is important, but it’s best for people to exercise that they enjoy.

“If you like to walk you should definitely be walking, you shouldn’t be running if you don’t want to run,” she said. “You have to find something that you like to do, that you will stick with. “

Exercising apps and videos can help point people in the right direction, she said.

Nancy Payne, from Meriden, joined the YMCA in 2014. She said she was one of those people who picked New Year’s resolutions but didn’t handle them properly.

When it comes to fitness and nutrition, she said she was able to develop healthier habits.

“It’s a learning curve,” she said.

When she joined the YMCA she was new to Meriden and wanted to get involved in the community.

She said she joined O’Farrill’s class, where she told clients about her experience with being overweight. This caught Payne’s attention and she continued to work with O’Farrill, who gave her advice on exercise and nutrition. Payne ended up hiring O’Farrill as his personal trainer.

“By doing this and following what she was telling me, I was able to lose some of my weight,” she said and praised O’Farrill for helping so many others.

Payne has Puerto Rican parents and loves when her family cooks. She learned to ask her family to make healthier choices like baking instead of deep-frying.

Michael McDowell, general manager of Club 24 fitness center in Meriden, said one of the most important aspects of health is nutrition, which is why his gym offers nutritional support.

Part of their goal with clients is to have them meet a trainer to help them put together a personalized plan.

“You want to find something that is right for you personally,” he said.

One of the things that helps people who want to adopt a healthier lifestyle is finding a workout partner or taking a group class where they can meet people with similar goals, he said. .

[email protected]: @KarlaSantosNews


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