Martin J. Lecker: Purchase health tools? Contemplating a concierge coach? This is what it is best to know | firm


There are a variety of home fitness options, including free weights, treadmills, and stationary bikes. Whatever you decide, according to columnist Martin J. Lecker, it’s important to speak to knowledgeable sellers and try the devices before you make a purchase.

In this column I will reveal what the experts should look for when buying fitness equipment. Along with this equipment, you may wish to enlist the services of a concierge trainer, which is a personal trainer who visits you at home. The selection of a concierge fitness trainer is also discussed. Finally, there are several shopping offers this month. Read on to find out more.


In my last column, I gave you tips on how to choose a gym to help you achieve your New Year’s resolution to exercise more. However, there is another alternative if you don’t believe the paraphrased saying, “If the mountain won’t come to you, you must go to the mountain.”

If you’re still not coming to the gym (“mountain”) in this case, you might want to consider bringing the mountain to you by purchasing your own gym equipment. With so many people looking to start an exercise routine, January is generally when fitness equipment retailers are well inventoried. It might also be the best time to buy gear at discounted prices, according to Chris McGovern, ship-to-store manager at Dick’s Sporting Goods in Pittsfield.

When looking for gear, where do you start? McGovern said potential buyers should consider their personal gear preferences as a first step. In this case, it’s important to speak to qualified professionals who can assess your individual cardio (cardiovascular) or strength goals. At this point they can recommend the appropriate equipment.

McGovern strongly recommends trying the devices before you buy them.

Gary Onnen, a salesman at Total Fitness Equipment, has his own list of things to consider for potential buyers. First, he believes clients should know what type of training they prefer. For example, do they like to use a treadmill? An exercise bike? Free weights?

Next, do you have any injuries that certain equipment can help or make that injury worse? What experiences does the customer have with the different device types? This step is extremely important and why would you hire a seller who has the experience and knowledge of the equipment to guide you through this process.

Equally important is having a showroom for testing equipment, which all Total Fitness Equipment locations have.

Onnen also pointed out that there are some misunderstandings. For example, some new customers fear that they will gain too much weight through strength training. What they’re missing, Onnen said, is that more muscle translates to more weight and that “you don’t have to worry about side-entering a door,” he joked.

Another misconception is that you shouldn’t underestimate how much space you actually have in your own home. A traditional weights gym can only occupy an area of ​​4 feet by 6 feet.

Another option is to purchase a folding treadmill. The newer ones are more student than years ago and are a good choice if you’re not willing to give up space, he said.

Onnen added another recommendation, consider a WaterRower machine as it covers cardio and strength training at the same time. It lets you use your upper body and lower body, is low-impact, improves your endurance and saves space.

Treadmills are also a good choice as they build your cardio and endurance. “It’s in everyone’s DNA to run from birth,” he noted, “so using a treadmill isn’t intimidating.”

Onnen’s final recommendation is to see if you can use any apps dedicated to your workout. Some devices come with apps included with purchase, which is another factor to consider when deciding which device to pick and where to buy it.

Shay Donald of Shay Donald Fitness in West Stockbridge has her own list of three key recommendations:

1. Does the prospective buyer have injuries or movements they shouldn’t do because of the risk of injury or pain?

2. What goals does the person have or what does he like to do? They want equipment that serves its purpose and “there is no hanger in the corner of the room”. For example, Donald is a powerlifter, so buying a treadmill would not be comfortable for her and would not be used compared to equipment that would achieve her strength goals.

3. Space is another factor and it’s important to prioritize the type of gear you can fit in your home.

In terms of equipment you should buy, she prefers dumbbells, bands, exercise balls, and sling trainers as these are the most versatile. For her clients, she adjusts the tempo, rep ranges, rest times, and adds some isometric breakpoints to create a progressive program.

Donald strongly recommends that individuals see a personal trainer for a few sessions to help with form and select exercises that are right for them. The personal trainer can write a program to follow alone at home. If that’s not an option, she recommends finding online resources to help provide at-home workout ideas as well as form guides.


Maybe you don’t go to the gym anymore. Maybe it’s time to get a concierge personal trainer to come to your home.

Once again I asked Shay Donald for her recommendations.

First, she said, “Hire someone with experience who can figure out your wellness and fitness goals and is qualified in those areas.” Recommendations from others are a good place to start, but make sure your personalities match. What works for one person may not work for you. Next, make sure that you are completely honest with this person about your goals and limitations and that you feel comfortable working with them.

Donald pointed out that some personal trainers have their own facilities, like themselves, and will not conduct training at your home. However, they will do virtual training, which is another viable alternative if you don’t want to physically go to the gym and your trainer won’t come to your house.

Regardless of your choice, I recommend checking to see if the coach has a meeting offer so you can determine if this person is a good fit for you before committing financially.


Regarding fitness equipment sales discounts, Chris McGovern said Dick’s Sporting Goods is currently running sales. He suggested visiting the Pittsfield site to see what devices are on sale this month, or checking out the online site

Gary Onnen recommended visiting one of Total Fitness Equipment’s nine locations. Your nearest one is in West Springfield. Also visit the website to see what’s on offer as the promotions on select equipment change frequently. often just to match a competitor’s lower price.

In addition to Dick’s Sporting Goods, you can also find other discounts on fitness equipment. One of them is Target, whose weekly flyer can be found on its website Walmart also offers online discounts, which you can view at

Don’t hesitate: BUY LINGERIE NOW!

Why wait for Valentine’s Day when you can save money now?

Victoria’s Secret is currently running a semi-annual sale online and in its retail stores. According to their corporate communications, the sales will end at the end of this month. For online details see


Now that we’re two weeks into the New Year, retailers are realizing that if consumers haven’t bought a 2023 calendar by now, they probably won’t, unless there’s a reason to. A discount can be one of these reasons.

Office Depot offers deep discounts online for some of its calendars at Amazon has up to 75 percent off calendars at For more online calendar discounts, visit and

I would also visit some supermarkets or local retailers that sell calendars.


Carr Hardware is having a huge annual store-wide sale throughout the month of January with discounts on select items ranging from 25 percent to 75 percent. Visit the website at or go to one of the retail stores.

RX TIP TO SAVE: With Martin Luther King, Jr. Day approaching Monday, many retailers will be running sales to celebrate the holiday. Keep an eye out for these bargain opportunities in retail and online shopping.

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