No matter your goal weight loss, strength, or just toning up I can help you.  Schedule your free consultation today.  I have been in the industry for over 15 years and have helped hundreds of people.  My training studio allows you the privacy and comfort to reach your goals.  Here we don’t have the hustle and bustle of a traditional gym. You receive individualized attention. Below are some reasons why a personal trainer might be just the help you need. Take advantage of this free offer and get scheduled today.  The new you is waiting.  Contact me at 425-876-9904 or E-Mail me at

ACCOUNTABILITY & MOTIVATION– Your trainer will be there waiting for you with a smile when you show up. Trainers are experts at holding you accountable. You have a set, paid appointment. We help you to develop your own personalized goals and to create a realistic plan to reach them. Trainers believe in you even when you are feeling at your lowest and don’t believe in yourself. “CAN’T” is not in a trainer’s vocabulary.

DEVELOP A ROUTINE– Sure, it’s easy to get to the gym and hop on the elliptical, but then what? Trainers are educated on the most effective ways to help you get to your fitness goals. We will work with you to develop a routine that makes sense and is realistic for you. If you haven’t worked out in months and are just returning to the gym, a trainer will not expect you to begin a fitness regimen of 60-minute routines five days a week. A trainer will help you figure out what works best in your life, that will maximize your time in the gym but not overwhelm you. We will work with you to develop an exercise routine and motivate you on the path to achieving your personal goals!

FRESH NEW PERSPECTIVES & IDEAS ON HEALTH, NUTRITION, AND FITNESS– There is an overwhelming amount of fitness, nutrition, and health information available. Is that new fad diet really effective? Will I really get a bikini body by doing that popular workout? Is it true what I read in this fitness magazine? It is impossible for the average person to sift through this information, but trainers deal with these questions daily. It is the job of the trainer to stay on top of health trends and continue their education to provide you with the most accurate, valid, and up to date information in the industry. We can provide you with tips and tricks to help you develop a healthier lifestyle.

ELIMINATE FITNESS OBSTACLES– Trainers share recipes! We know ways to contend with “candy in the office”, and how to manage menus when dining out with friends. We see you on a regular basis and recognize when something is different or just not right. Often trainers are the first to say, “Hey, you’ve been complaining about this for a little bit. Maybe you should go see a doctor, massage therapist, nutritionist, etc.” We can refer you to the appropriate professional. We care about your health and well-being! And we will hold you accountable to take care of yourself nutritionally, physically, and with your overall health!

SOLID, CONSISTENT, NON-JUDGMENTAL SUPPORT– Your trainer only cares about you and your success. Each hour you spend with your trainer is an hour to focus on you and only you! We provide consistent feedback to help you better yourself and achieve your goals. Most importantly, the trainer is able to do this without making you feel inadequate or judged. We have all gone into the gym and worried about what we look like doing an exercise or compared ourselves to someone else. Trainers help you to see your successes, big and small, when you can’t see them yourself. Through this support, we will motivate you and help you overcome negative self-judgments, too. Through ups and downs, thick and thin, your trainer will be there.

PROPER TECHNIQUE & FORM– All of the You Tube videos and fitness magazines in the world do not substitute for having a person by your side. We provide immediate feedback on form and technique. Trainers pay attention, and cue both your mind and body to make sure you are doing each exercise correctly. We can help you develop better running form, improve your posture, and increase your strength by teaching you to recruit the proper muscles. With each exercise, trainers will help you make a mindbody connection and make you aware of proper form and technique. These skills will help you prevent injury, work out safely, and achieve your goals more quickly!

INJURY PREVENTION and/or INJURY REHAB– Often people shy away from equipment in the gym because they are afraid of hurting themselves. Likewise, one may stop going due to an injury. Trainers will teach you how to use equipment properly so that you do not injure yourself. We will also work with you to prevent injuries in everyday life by helping you increase your balance, flexibility, and core strength. We are able to focus on specific exercises that will benefit you based on your activities of daily living. If you have suffered an injury, trainers are able to work with you to safely exercise, keep your range of motion, and get your strength back.

SPORTS-SPECIFIC TRAINING– Are you an athlete? Even a recreational athlete can get better at their sport. Trainers have studied body patterns and movements. We know the best exercises to help you develop strength, endurance, speed, and agility within your sport. A trainer will know if you have been keeping up your routine through your performance and help you maintain the sports-specific exercises in your program!

MAXIMIZE WORKOUT/MINIMIZE TIME– You will burn more calories in less time when working with a trainer. A trainer develops a program that is efficient, and allows you to accomplish the most in the shortest amount of time. If you are finding it hard to find time to work out, a trainer will not only help you get the most out of your work out, but will teach you how to do that on your own. Your trainer will follow up to see if you achieved your workout goals for the week, and make tweaks to the program to be more successful!

PERSONALIZED PROGRAM– Personal training is just that, PERSONAL! A trainer will develop a program that is specific to you and your goals. If you have an injury, if you want to climb a mountain, if you want lose weight to become pregnant, have lower back pain… The program will be specific to you and only you! Your trainer will take the time to develop it and teach it to you. Then we are going to hold you accountable to achieve the goals of that program!

RELATIONSHIP-BUILDING– Some of my favorite time during the week is with my clients. You develop a relationship with your trainer like no other. Your relationship is very personal. There are not very many people whom you share your goals so specifically, who in turn will work diligently to help you achieve them. Often the hour (or two, or three) a week you spend with your trainer, is the only time in your week that is truly devoted to you, your goals, and your successes.

I have had sessions in which my client was angry and just wanted to work out. There was no talking for the hour. I have had sessions with clients who have recently lost a loved one and their hour with me was their time to escape. I also have clients who are excited to share with me their personal successes and how the strategies used in training are translating into their life outside the gym. Often times, intimate details of life are shared in sessions. I am so grateful that people trust me enough to allow me into their lives. It is these personal relationships and the knowledge of who you are that helps the trainer work specifically and effectively with your training needs.

RESULTS– Working with a trainer can help you achieve the results that you have not achieved on your own. Each client’s goals are individual and personal. Some seek weight loss, injury rehab, or companionship. As a trainer, I work diligently to help my clients recognize tangible and intangible progress toward their goals as well as results we never anticipated. It is these results that not only hold you accountable to me, but hold me, your trainer, accountable to you!

“You will achieve success only by doing it today.”


Filed Under: Cardio, Diet, Fitness, Health, Lifting, Orenda


Q&A: Caffeine and Creatine

ballistikcoffeeboy / flickr

Q: I heard recently that caffeine negates the effect of taking creatine. Is this true?

A: Caffeine supplementation is often associate with endurance or aerobic exercise, while creatine supplementation for anaerobic or resistance exercise is more often associated with the small world of sports nutrition. There’s strong support in the research for the ergogenic effects of both caffeine and creatine when used independently, but there have been several studies that show coffee can negate the ergogenic effects of creatine.

In these studies, which showed no performance differences between placebo groups and groups that took creatine and coffee in combination, the coffee and creatine cocktail didn’t hinder muscle absorption of creatine. So in theory it should have improved performance.

Problem is, the same subjects were used for all trials, which would be fine as long as there’s adequate time between trials to eliminate the ergogenic effects of creatine (about four weeks). Unfortunately, neither study provided an adequate time period between trials using the same groups. This means that the ergogenic effects of creatine could have influenced both trials, which could explain the conflicting findings of both studies.

Some would also argue that caffeine containing beverages such as coffee cause dehydration, leading to decreased performance that could negate the positive effects of creatine. However, there is evidence in the research that caffeine containing beverages, when combined with water and used in moderation, do not impair hydration status.

Research You Can Trust

The best way to address this potential problem is to go by how you respond to caffeine and to closely monitor your hydration status. If your urine resembles lemonade, then there is good chance that you are hydrated. If your urine resembles apple juice, then chances are you are not hydrated.

Follow a hydration plan that includes:

  • 1/2 to one ounce of fluid per pound per day
  • 16 ounces of fluid two hours prior to training or competition
  • 8 ounces of fluid every 10-15 minutes during training or competition
  • A minimum of 16 ounces of fluid for every pound lost during training
  • Caffeine if desired, but don’t use coffee in place of food.
  • Continue with creatine supplementation (three to five grams per day prior to training) if you have found it helps your training.


Resources listed above

Arturo Espitia Personal Trainer CrossFit Everett,WA

Body Envy: The Importance of Keeping a Healthy Head

Value your body for what it’s capable of, not what it looks like.

Self-scrutiny is something anybody can fall prey to. And at times, it can be healthy. In CrossFit, we learn to perfect our form, improve our performances, and constantly progress. But when it comes to our bodies, self-scrutiny can be a dangerous and powerful emotion.

Regardless of your athletic participation, body type or gender, it’s easy to envy a body you admire. But sometimes the mind takes thing too far and unrealistic aspirations begin to brew. Although CrossFit has a huge focus on health, like anybody else, CrossFit athletes can succumb to body image issues that can seriously affect their psychological state. As a community, we do a great job of encouraging a strong and fit body over an under or overweight frame, but we still place what we perceive as perfect bodies on a pedestal. We may not bow down to lanky supermodels, but we can’t deny the constant CrossFit barrage of six-packs and hard-as-rock rears. We need to remember that like boxes, every person is unique, and it’s better to embrace what we have than to envy what we want.

Proactively fending off envious ideas begins with having a realistic reaction to what you see in the mirror. Your bone structure, your natural build and your genetic predispositions are things that can’t be altered with WODs. Welcome what you see and aim to change only what you can. If you’re unhappy with your belly, begin a nutrition plan that will allow you to reduce your body fat percentage. But don’t for a moment allow yourself to see a six-pack and think you must have that to achieve success. And avoid comparing yourself to others around you. Comparative calculations should only apply to you, and your then and now state. Determine first what is possible as a unique individual, then formulate a plan based on your personal potential alone.

If you find yourself inadvertently engaging in negative self-talk based on another person’s body, redirect those thoughts of envy. Positivity, like any other attitude, is a habit that must be learned and practiced. Take note of visual cues that create uncomfortable feelings and learn to take that attention and shift it from obsessing about somebody else’s perfect posterior, to formulating a recipe for the perfect Paleo meal that evening. Rather than react to something or someone you can’t control, keep consistently positive self-dialogue with healthy and attainable personal goals and achievements.

At times, it can be impossible to fend off feelings of envy. And when they begin to be overwhelming, it might be time to ask for a little assistance. It might mean a simple pep talk from a coach or friend, or it might be better to seek out a professional to talk through things. There’s nothing as beneficial as an unbiased and educated opinion when it comes to your psychological state, and it’s certainly nothing to be ashamed of.

One major concern associated with body envy is body dysmorphia disorder. It’s a fairly widespread psychological condition related to a person’s inaccurate perception of their own body, and can is often linked to eating disorders like bulimia and anorexia, and obsessive exercising. If body envy begins to consume your thoughts, or you know somebody who seems to obsess about achieving the look of a body not their own, address it with care and compassion to alleviate what could become a very serious issue.

Envy can be an ugly virus that quickly sickens the mind. Your rear may not rock white booty shorts quite like Stacy Tovar, and your torso may not dawn a 16-pack like Rich Froning, but that’s okay. You weren’t meant to mirror anybody so ignore the tendency to want what may not be possible, and instead, target a balance of mind, body, and spirit that keeps you happy and healthy.

Source: The Box Magizine. Great Article

Why Everyone Needs Core Training

There is a lot of confusion about core stability, exercise, injury prevention, and performance enhancement. This is probably due to statements and opinion from people who have never measured stability. We have performed many experiments on stability mechanisms together with trials on pained patients and elite athletes that form the foundation for this short article.

  • Why Everyone Needs Core Training
    There is a lot of confusion about core stability, exercise, injury prevention, and performance enhancement. This is probably due to statements and opinion from people who have never measured stability. We have performed many experiments on stability mechanisms together with trials on pained patients and elite athletes that form the foundation for this short article.


    SpineHaving worked with people who suffer from back pain and high performance athletes for over 30 years, I am often asked “to choose the most influential variable that links pain and performance.” My response would be an underperforming core. 

    Why is this? What is the core?

    Core stiffness is essential for injury prevention and performance enhancement. Core stiffness is not optimized in body building exercises. Core stiffness requires dedicated training. A discussion of the core requires a 3-dimensional perspective. The spine is a stack of vertebrae that is called upon to bear loads, yet it is flexible. A design engineer will tell you that you cannot design a structure to be good at both. 

    A steel beam that is straight and stood on its end is stiff, and can bear loads that try to compress, shear, and twist it. So the beam can bear load but it cannot move. A flexible rod that allows movement will bend and buckle under load, but absorbs shock. Our spines do it all—they bend and allow the lungs to fill with air, and even allow us to dance. 

    The spine is this beautiful structure that is flexible and allows flowing movement, but requires a 3-dimensional guy wire system to stiffen and stabilize it when it is required to bear loads.   

    Analysis of the muscular system, together with its associated fascia sheets, reveals a clever guy wire system that creates balanced stiffness eliminating the possibility of buckling and injury. The concern is that modern living does not “tune” and train this guy wire system, and in many people’s cases, it lapses into complacency.

    The greater the load that is placed down the spine, the greater the need for the musculature to stiffen the spine. How can this be? When muscles contract, they do two things: they create force and they create stiffness. Stiffness is always stabilizing to a joint. Thus stiffness prepares the joint to bear load without buckling. Failure to appropriately stiffen is the biggest cause of joint injury, although not the only cause.

    On the performance side, “core stiffness” is mandatory. It is absolutely essential to carry heavy loads, run fast, and change direction quickly. It determines the rate of speed for movement of the arms and legs. There are those people who state they do not need dedicated core training because they lift and squat. Yet when I assess their strength and speed abilities, often I find they are unable to translate their strength to on‐field performance. Pointing out their weak links brings them to the realization that training the core is non‐negotiable.

    How does core stiffness enhance limb speed and strength? Consider the pectoralis major muscle, which attaches the rib cage at its proximal end, crosses the shoulder joint, and attaches to the humerus of the upper arm at its distal end. When muscles contract they try to shorten. Consider the specific action here: the arm flexes around the shoulder joint moving the arm from muscle shortening at the distal end. But the same shortening also bends the rib cage towards the arm at the proximal end of the muscle. Thus, simply using the pectoral muscles would not result in a fast or forceful punch. Now stiffen the proximal end of pectoral muscle attachment—meaning stiffen the core and ribcage so it cannot move. 

    Now, 100% of pectoral muscle shortening is directed to action at its distal end, producing fast and forceful motion in the arm. In the same way, a stiffened core locks down the proximal ends of the hip muscles producing faster leg motion. A loss of core stiffness causes the torso to bend when sprinting, and a loss of speed (some force was robbed that should have been expressed in leg velocity). 

    Thus, a universal law of human movement is illustrated: “proximal stiffness enhances distal mobility and athleticism”.Consider a 340-pound National Football League (NFL) lineman who is strength trained in the weight room on Olympic-style lifts and power cleans. His coaches believe he is well trained. Yet the athlete has back pain that limits training. Measuring his cutting speed, the ability to take five fast strides forward, plant a foot, and cut to the right, reveals his great weakness and strength imbalance. The pelvis drops on the swing leg side and the spine bends laterally. He reports a twinge of pain. All of his strength training has been performed with two legs on the ground. All of the pulls, lifts and presses never trained the core in 3-dimensions. The weak link is limiting his performance and causing stress and pain. Addressing this with loaded carrying exercises produced more lateral spine stiffness in his core. His pelvis and spine produce appropriate proximal stiffness (proximal to the hip joint) so that more velocity of all of the muscles that cross the hip joint works on the distal side of the joint resulting in faster leg speed. Further, the spine does not bend, the stress concentration at the joint is eliminated and the pain is gone. 

    This example demonstrates that the hip muscles were limited by a weaker lateral core. Specifically, the gluteal muscles on the stance leg were confined by the lateral core muscles on the swing leg side of the body—in this case, the lateral obliques and quadratus lumborum. Good training always addresses the elements that assist and potentiate one another throughout the body linkage. The core is home base for strength and speed. Proximal stiffness, or stiffening the core between the hip and shoulder joints, produces higher limb speed and force. Strike force in mixed martial arts (MMA), baseball, or golf, is governed by this universal principle: limb speed for throwing, running, and directional change is a fundamental athleticism. While proximal stiffness (the core) governs all of these athletic objectives it also reduces back pain and injury by reducing the spine bending when loads are imposed. The spine loses its load bearing strength as it is bent more away from its neutral posture.

    So now we can answer the question of “what is the core?” Proximal stiffness occurs between the ball and socket joints (i.e., the hips and shoulders). It involves all of the muscles in the torso. They function primarily to stop motion and they should be trained this way. The core also involves the muscles that cross the ball and socket joints that have distal connections, such as psoas, the gluteals, latissimus, pectoralis, etc. There are many ways to train these in progressions to enhance performance and injury resilience. I have described these in my book, “Ultimate Back Fitness and Performance” ( Every person will have different requirements; hence, each person will need guidance in how to create the best program for themselves.

    Still not convinced that dedicated core training is mandatory? The most essential of human movements is the ability to walk. Children with paralysis of quadratus lumborum can hardly walk. The pelvis, if not stiffened to the lumbar spine with quadratus contraction, simply bends laterally so that the torso collapses with the stance phase of the walking cycle. Quadratus is an essential core muscle forming the lateral core. Some of us have enough athleticism such that extra training of the quadratus is not necessary. But the NFL lineman needs to train it to change direction quickly on the gridiron—ensuring that the lateral core is up to the job of creating a stiff base so the hip muscles can explode, producing maximum cutting speed. Here the training must incorporate loaded carries such as suitcase carries and farmers walks.

    A final thought addresses the universality of core training. The exercise progressions that our scientific work has justified over the years to reduce the risk of back injury, and to enhance performance, are very similar to the progressions shown by colleagues around the world to reduce the risk of groin injury, sportsman’s hernia, and knee injury, particularly to the anterior cruciate ligament (ACL). All of us working in these areas converged on the same conclusion. No one can afford to neglect this building block of function. Core training to enhance stiffness is the foundation and underpinning of one of the most fundamental laws of human motion.

Coping With An Injury

Coping With An Injury

When you’re sidelined with an injury, you have to overcome more than just the physical setbacks. Here are some thoughts on rebounding from the psychological ones as well.

I got into a car wreck in January that sent my Volkswagen to Beetle heaven. Up until that point, I had been training incredibly hard — I was hitting PRs on lifts and workouts, and my mental game was getting stronger every day. The goal was to make it to my third Regionals and re-qualify for USA Wrestling Nationals. The second I got into the accident, I was scanning myself for injuries. I decided I was totally fine. I had some scrapes and burns but no broken bones. I told myself I’d give myself an extra day of rest, and then I’d get back on the program.

I eased into workouts, got massages and got cracked by chiropractors, but two weeks later, I started to panic. I was not better; in fact, I was worse. I had to make a decision. The Open was only two weeks away. Could I just push through this? Once I focused only on my recovery, I realized that the Open was simply not in the cards this year and that I needed to go to the doctor to figure out what was going on. It turned out to be two partial tears in my rotator cuff and some pretty severe neck damage. I would have done terrible things to my body had I kept going.

Here’s what I learned:

1. Do not put a timeline on your recovery. Recover, and then focus on your goals when you are better. Do not say, “I need to be better by this date.” Your body doesn’t know what that date is, nor does it care. Put all your energy into taking care of yourself and being patient, and when you’re ready, THEN decide what your next logical goals are.

2. Soak up the beginner experience. It has been two months and I still can’t lift more than a PVC pipe above my head. I can front squat about 25 percent of my max, and a five-minute jog burns my lungs. I am the utmost beginner at this point, and I’m totally at peace with it.

As a coach and an athlete, sometimes we forget what it feels like to struggle with fundamentals. What muscles are required to fully rotate into a front rack? What is contributing to your internally rotated shoulders? What is altered in the spine when your traps seize up? These are questions I haven’t had to re-examine in a very long time. I am rediscovering what it means to be a beginner, and this is quite possibly the best coaching tool I will ever receive.

3. There are plenty of other things to work on. When someone loses or is without a sense, it is proven that other senses can become more capable. For example, a person without vision may have a stronger sense of smell or hearing. Being injured has allowed me to see the gym as more than a place to exercise. I can see the rest of the experience clearer. I love the gym more now than I ever did. This place is filled with the most amazing people, and there is nowhere I’d rather be, injured or not.

There is a mental game to work on. There is nutrition. There is my coaching ability. I still have to run a gym. These things matter just as much as athletic performance, if not more. Do not be afraid to put performance on the back burner, even if you are not injured. Sometimes you must prioritize the strength and balance of your life over your workout. Growth can happen with or without thrusters — it’s just a matter of whether or not you choose to grow.

Arturo Espitia
11527 Highway 99 E302 Everett, WA 98204
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