Fit For You

Audrey Nowakowski

All baby boomers will be over 65 by 2030, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. So, one in every five residents will be of retirement age. That means more people will be living with chronic conditions and general age-related issues, even as their life expectancy increases. Here in Wisconsin, Waukesha County is home to the state’s largest senior population.

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There are approximately 50 million people living with some form of dementia, including Alzheimer’s, worldwide, according to the World Health Organization. This rate is expected to nearly double by 2030, and triple by the year 2050. The global costs of dementia was estimated to be around $1 trillion in 2018 and are expected to rise drastically.

Fitness trends come and go over the years, but several trends that have held strong are formats such as functional movement, high intensity interval training, and a greater shift towards holistic wellness. But while trends have changed, a constant has been the need to go to a gym or a studio space in order to participate in these workouts. 

Higher Level Camps

Milwaukee-native Cheryl Mohr always knew that sports, especially basketball, would play a major role in her life. Mohr played varsity basketball for her entire high school career, became a 1,000-point club member, and was the first player to receive a full athletic scholarship for women's basketball. She went on to play Division 1 basketball at the University of Arkansas and then professionally for the Columbus Minks.


Wisconsin has been hit hard this winter — from snowstorms to a polar vortex that brought dangerously cold temperatures and wind chills to the region. But even on the coldest days, with temperatures falling well below zero, a few dedicated runners or bikers will skip the gym and exercise outside.

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Many of us made pledges or resolutions to exercise or eat healthier in the new year, but it’s not unusual for these kinds of resolutions to fall by the wayside in the first weeks of the New Year. But why is that?  And how can we make better plans?

Well, people often set lofty and unrealistic goals — especially when it comes to nutrition — says Becky Kerkenbush, a clinical dietitian, certified specialist in gerontological nutrition and fellow of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. 

Lauren Sigfusson

Editor's note: This piece was originally published Dec. 11, 2018.

Image courtesy of Annie Weiss

Editor's note: This piece was originally published Oct. 19, 2018.

The Ice Age National Scenic Trail is a 1,200 mile footpath that is entirely within the state of Wisconsin, though the distance it covers could take you from Milwaukee to Orlando.

Morgan James Publishing/

Training for a marathon is tough. But add a physical or cognitive impairment to the mix and it can require significant additional support. That was a lesson Dick Traum learned after losing his right leg in the aftermath of a serious car accident when he was 24. Ten years after the accident, he became the first runner to complete a marathon with a prosthetic leg when he crossed the finish line at the 1976 New York City Marathon.

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Prenatal providers recommend that women undergo a variety of health screenings while they’re pregnant. Among those is a test for GBS, or Group B streptococcus, between weeks 35 and 37 of pregnancy.

GBS is a relative of the bacteria that causes strep throat and is found naturally in about 30 percent of adult women. It is only considered a risk during child birth, when it can infect a newborn - especially in premature births. Women who test positive for Group B strep are intravenously given antibiotics during labor to reduce the chance of transmission to their baby.

Audrey Nowakowski

Fitness trends come and go. So do so-called boutique fitness studios that specialize in one particular format such as spinning, Pilates, or hot yoga.

Now with 1,000 locations and 700,000 members worldwide, Orangetheory Fitness isn’t exactly the new kid on the block: it's been around for almost a decade. But it's really taken off in the past couple of years.

Audrey Nowakowski

Bikes have had many forms since they were invented, from the classic two-wheeled bicycle, to tricycles, unicycles, fixed gear bikes, fat tire bikes… the list goes on.

But it’s still rare to see a handcycle on the streets of Milwaukee. The three-wheeled, seven-foot-long machine is arm-powered, and most commonly used by disabled athletes. While an athlete’s body operates a handcycle differently, handcycle races are just as exhilarating as any other form of bike racing.

Audrey Nowakowski

Parkinson’s Disease is a degenerative neurological condition that causes patients to lose muscle and body control over time.  It can start out as something as simple as a limp, progress to tremors, and can eventually leave a patient entirely incapacitated.

While doctors and hospitals can offer medications, surgery, and physical therapy - some people diagnosed with the disease look for a supportive group environment with others who see Parkinson’s as just one part of their lives. 

Audrey Nowakowski

From ropes to tires, the fitness world has found ways to repurpose old work tools in the name of exercise.  One of those tools you may be seeing more of in your weight room or health club is the kettlebell.  What has actually been around for centuries is just becoming a standard piece of fitness equipment for group exercise and personal training.

But why is the cannonball with a handle any better than your average dumbbell?  For this month’s Fit For You, we travel to Xperience Fitness in Hales Corners for a group kettlebell class with instructor Kelly Bullard:

Rachel Morello

College students can have a lot of stressors in their lives: school work, jobs, tuition... just to name a few. All these can take quite a toll on one's physical and mental health.

One way Lake Effect producer Audrey Nowakowski and former education reporter Rachel Morello like to relieve stress is through exercise. They've noticed that two Milwaukee university leaders - Marquette University President Michael Lovell and UW-Milwaukee Chancellor Mark Mone - are also big fitness advocates.

So, WUWM decided to put them to the test - a physical fitness test.