By Scott D. Miller, MD

As Valentine’s Day approaches, it seems appropriate to talk about our hearts. How did the heart become associated with love? In ancient days, the heart was considered to be the center of all emotions since it is located in the center of the chest. The heart’s association with love was perpetuated by its response to affection—an increase in speed and gusto of each beat.

Screen Shot 2019-01-25 at 4.11.49 PMFor many men, love can be the biggest motivation to keep that heart healthy. After all, healthy dietary and lifestyle choices keep us looking good and performing well. Because time is our most valuable commodity, we are always looking for better and more efficient ways to achieve these goals. In a world of social media and full email inboxes, we struggle to reclaim that lost time. However, we often leave the most important “time-saver” on the table—an investment in our longevity.

Since heart disease is the leading cause of death in the United States, your best investment of time is knowing and reducing your risks of future problems. As it turns out, you can actually calculate this future risk based on your age, gender, smoking status, cholesterol level, HDL cholesterol (“good” cholesterol), blood pressure, use of blood pressure medications, and history of diabetes. You can find these calculators simply by searching the web for “heart risk calculator.” More importantly, you should visit your primary care physician annually for monitoring and guidance on how to reduce your risks of suffering from a future cardiovascular event.

The value of regular visits to your physician goes far beyond the measurable. These face-to-face encounters serve as reminders to tighten up our dietary and exercise routines. Also, we often tend to overestimate our level of health in the absence of symptoms. Monitoring our numbers on a regular basis is the best way to squash these “silent killers.”

If you had a tool to reliably predict the stock market, you would certainly use it. Similarly, you should take advantage of the most important prophetic and scientifically-backed information that will literally buy you time. So, if you want to give your loved ones the best gift of love, do your best to keep that heart beating for many years to come. Be your best self.

Look for my article on “Spring Cleaning” in the next issue.

Scott D. Miller, MD, is the Medical Director of Robotic Surgery at WellStar North Fulton Hospital. He is a urologist with WellStar Urology in Roswell and has practiced in Atlanta for over 20 years. WellStar North Fulton Hospital offers the Know Your Heart Screening that can determine your risk of heart disease, stroke and other serious conditions. Call (770) 956-STAR (7827) to learn more or schedule an appointment.

Scott D. Miller, MD WellStar North Fulton Hospital • (470) 956-4230 • ScottDMillerMD.com

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Success often brings changes and thanks to the amazing Windy Hill Athletic Club
(WHAC) team and its members, 2019 is filled with exciting changes.

Screen Shot 2019-01-25 at 4.00.29 PMKaren Foley joined the WHAC team seven years ago and has now been promoted to National Sales Director. She will move to Chicago, Illinois to work from the Midtown Headquarters. Foley’s legacy at WHAC includes building a dynamic team of employees, a community of over 4,500 members, and state-of-the-art programming. While gone from day-to-day activities, she will remain a vital part of the operations team.

Trip Baisden has been promoted to the interim General Manager position. He is no stranger to the dynamics of WHAC and has served as Tennis Director for the last five years. Baisden will continue to build on the welcoming, caring, and motivating culture that Foley has helped to create. The club’s core leadership team of Tiago Kulaif, Susan Walker, Adam Clark, and Mark Goffi will continue to provide excellent service and inspire members each day to live their best lives.

The entire staff at Windy Hill Athletic Club promises to continue to inspire you to transform your life by enjoying its resort-like amenities, tribal communities, and personal attention.

Windy Hill Athletic Club • WindyHillClub.com

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By Michael Siciliano, MD

Regenerative medicine itself isn’t new—the first bone marrow and solid-organ
transplants were done decades ago. But advances in developmental and cell biology, immunology, and other fields have unlocked new opportunities to refine existing regenerative therapies and create even better ones. While regenerative medicine encompasses the whole body, this article focuses on the repair of extremity neuropathies and damaged joints. With regards to regeneration treatments, three very popular
treatments are listed below:

Screen Shot 2019-01-25 at 3.42.50 PM1. Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP) involves extracting a small amount of the patient’s blood, then extracting and concentrating something called growth factors, which are responsible for inducing new tissue re-growth. Not all PRP is the same and the quality and effectiveness of PRP treatments varies considerably between doctors.

2.Umbilical Cord Derived Cell Therapy (UC/WJ-MSC)is when proliferating factors, including stem cells, are extracted from the umbilical cord and is one of the most useful sources of stem cells we know of. It’s been in use for nearly 20 years in treating children with a blood disease and has increasingly become more common in adult treatments because extraction is immediately after birth, with no harm or risk to the mother or baby and poses no ethical issues such as embryonic derived cell therapy. This makes it not only a noninvasive and lower cost source of stem cells but an incredibly healthy source too, due to minimal damage from pollution and aging because the source is so young and healthy. The issue with this treatment is that the viability of the cells is not always verifiable unless the provider can give you independent lab results certifying this.

3. Autologous derived stem cell therapy is derived from your own adipose tissue or bone marrow. These treatments have proved themselves to be effective. However, it can be argued that because the source is you, the cells are as old as the patient and may not be as robust and healthy as expected. Additionally, the extraction itself can be uncomfortable and carries some risk.

9 KEY FACTORS WHEN CHOOSING A STEM
CELL / PRP FACILITY

Focus on more than just stem cells.
Stem cells and PRP are some of the most powerful tools to aid in regeneration and healing, however, they do not operate in a vacuum. Other adjuvant tools are required to promote health and healing within the body.

Individualized therapy.
Regenerative therapy is not one size fits all. Each patient’s treatment, condition and health should be focused on aiding the body to heal in a manner consistent with that individual.

Clinical research and published studies.
Ensure the facility provides the science to back up their protocols and claims vs. smoke and mirrors.

Length of time practicing regenerative
medicine.
Make sure the practice is not one of the many fly-by-night operations. The practice should be well-established, licensed, and experienced in regenerative medicine.

An integrative team approach.
The practice should have a team of professionals with multiple scopes collaborating to determine the right care for the patient at the right time.

Rome was not built in a day.
The one-and-done approach, while convenient and ubiquitous ignores the fact that the body often requires multiple treatments to respond. One stem cell or PRP injection to an area ravaged by injury, disease and time is not always the most effective approach.

Rent-a-doc.
Many stem cell providers employ no full-time medical doctors and only use a part-time nurse practitioner (NP). Legitimate centers should have full-time trained medical physicians.

Adjacent Segment Treatment (AST)
Ligament laxity in the surrounding structures being treated is often overlooked and is not readily apparent. It is important the treating physician practice the AST approach so as to stabilize all weakened surrounding structures.

A guarantee.
While not always possible and highly variable depending on the individual patient’s case, some high-level treatment centers offer an assurance of outcome and a plan B at no charge, should the guaranteed outcome not be achieved.

Total HealthCare Medical Center • Sandy Springs 678-999-8531 • Norcross 770-416-9995 • TotalHealthMed.com

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By Atlanta Gastroenterology Associates

Q: How common is colon cancer?
A: Colon cancer is the third most common diagnosed cancer and the second leading cause of cancer-related deaths in the U.S. When detected in its early stages during a screening colonoscopy, colon cancer is also one of the most highly treatable and preventable cancers.

Q: When should I get screened?
A: Most medical guidelines recommend colon cancer screening begins for all average-risk adults starting at age 50. Those with a family history of colon cancer or polyps are at higher risk and should start screening earlier.

Q: What are the symptoms of colon cancer?
A: Colon cancer doesn’t cause symptoms until its late stages and its symptoms are not unique – change in bowel habits, rectal bleeding, cramping, unintended weight loss. So, if
you’re experiencing any type of digestive symptom, do not ignore it, and see your doctor.

Q: What are my screening options?
A: While any preventive screening is encouraged, not all methods are created equal. Popular at-home, stool-based tests are convenient, but they can miss colon polyps and some cancers and have resulted in many false-positive readings. Research confirms that colonoscopy remains the only screening method that both detects and prevents cancer through polyp detection and removal.

1.866.GO.TO.AGA [468.6242], AtlantaGastro.com

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By Halen Adair

Best Self staffer Caroline Simpson, instructor Sonny Gholami, Best Self staffer Halen Adair

Best Self staffer Caroline Simpson, instructor Sonny Gholami, Best Self staffer Halen Adair

Name of fitness facility

Windy Hill Athletic Club

Name and length of class

Booty Barre

Name of instructor

Sonny Gholami

What do attendees need to know before class starts?

Grippy socks would be great for this class but you can also wear tennis shoes or go barefoot. I would definitely wear long pants or leggings though as you will be lifting and bending your legs a ton! Be sure to arrive about five minutes before the class starts to help set up your station. Also, definitely bring some water because it gets hot and you’ll want it by your side!

How would you describe this workout? How does it compare to similar classes you’ve taken?

I’ve done barre classes in the past but this one was definitely on another level. The intensity of this barre class was high and lots of cardio was included throughout the workout. This was an hour-long body and emphasis on the booty burn. We did tons of different workouts such as lunges, jump squats, push ups, sit ups, barre poses, etc. Every single phase you do in this class targets a specific part of your body, and you 100% feel it!

Best Self staffer Caroline Simpson working those abs!

Best Self staffer Caroline Simpson working those abs!

What muscle groups did this class work the most? Was it a great workout for your abs, butt, arms, etc.?

This class targeted our full bodies. There was a large cardio element in this barre class so be prepared to sweat! This workout was great for our legs, arms, core and glutes (Think weights for our arms, towels as gliders for our core, lots of lunges and squats). It was intense!

Did the instructor do anything to make the class extra special?

Sonny is amazing. I loved her music selection- it wasn’t like any music I’ve heard. It was upbeat international dance music. I loved listening to it while I worked out because it helped me keep going. She is such an inspiring woman and she knows how to inspire others. She really helped me on my form during the class and made sure I kept going!

Click here for a behind the scenes interview with Sonny!

Click here for a behind the scenes interview with Sonny!

What was the most enjoyable part of the workout?

I really enjoyed Sonny’s instruction and everyone at Windy Hill is so nice and welcoming. Even though the workout itself was tough, I was able to challenge myself and test my limits within that one hour. Sonny came over and helped me continue to push myself and corrected my form whenever I was slacking- haha, thanks, Sonny! She was so interactive with the class and she did the majority of the workout right alongside us.

Any other feedback you’d like to give about this workout?

This workout was as hard as a workout gets, but with hard work comes reward. I felt so good after I completed this class and my body was definitely feeling it. If you are looking to

The Booty Barre Class!

The Booty Barre Class!

get in the best shape of your life, just go to anything Sonny teaches at Windy Hill. She looks incredible and the girls in class swear she has changed their bodies in such amazing ways. Windy Hill is such an amazing atmosphere and has state-of-the-art classes and trainers. I will definitely be back to see Sonny and try out her boot camp class or even her infamous Burn class!

 Details: 135 Interstate N Pkwy, Atlanta, GA 30339; Midtown.com/Atlanta

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By Robert Medcalf, PT, OCS, Dip MDT

For patients who suffer with back or neck pain, physical therapy is one of many conservative options available to assist in their recovery. Over the years, conventional physical therapy for the spinal pain sufferer consisted of hot packs, ultrasound, electrical stimulation, generalized massage, and nonspecific exercises. While most current physical therapy clinical practice guidelines do not support the use of passive modalities for neck and back pain, their use is still common.

Screen Shot 2019-01-25 at 11.05.29 AMModalities:

•Can provide patients with short term pain relief

•Have not been shown to accelerate the recovery time of patients with painful spinal disorders.

•Because some of the treatments provide temporary, soothing relief of the pain, they have the potential to cause the patient to become dependent on them. When the relief wears off, the patient may feel compelled to return for more treatments. Besides being very costly, these treatments fail to progress the patient toward recovery of function.

Physical therapists utilizing modern methods of treatment generally believe that patients should be active participants in their physical therapy programs. These spine therapists utilize an evidence-based approach to treatment. This includes an emphasis on empowering the patient to manage his or her own condition. The ultimate goal is to teach patients specific procedures that they can use to gain rapid pain control, which ultimately will lead to their recovery. The methods used are directionally specific exercises, postural and ergonomic advice.

Manual therapy is also an important treatment component and is used as needed to assist in the recovery process. Manual therapy involves skilled, hands-on techniques to reduce pain, improve range of motion and function, and enhance the patient’s own self-treatment procedures.

Spine focused physical therapy as
described above:

•Leads to a rapid recovery from the current back pain episode.

•Provides the patient with a long-term benefit and a chance to prevent future recurrences.

•If the patient does experience a recurrence, knowledge of the self-treatment methods to promptly apply allows the patient to rapidly recover from this setback. This is especially important considering the very high recurrence rate of painful spinal disorders.

The physical therapists at Resurgens Spine Center are committed to assisting our patients in achieving lasting symptom relief and recovery of lost function. Our therapists have received post-graduate training in the most modern methods of spinal treatment.

Resurgens Spine Center • Non-surgical & Surgical Spine Care • 24 Convenient Atlanta Locations •ResurgensSpine.com

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By Wyndi Kappes

(L to R) Best Self staffer Caroline Simpson, owner/instructor Amber Barry, Best Self staffer Wyndi Kappes

(L to R) Best Self staffer Caroline Simpson, owner/instructor Amber Barry, Best Self staffer Wyndi Kappes

Name of fitness facility

Westside Yoga

Name and length of class

STRONG- 1 hour

Name of instructor

Amber Barry

What do attendees need to know before class starts?

There is plenty of parking in front of the studio just make sure to arrive at least 10 minutes to check in and claim your spot in the class. Classes start promptly at the time listed so make sure not to be late! If you forgot your mat, no worries. You can rent a mat the first time for free and for just $2 each time after that!

How would you describe this workout? How does it compare to similar classes you’ve taken?

This yoga class had many of the elements you can find in other yoga classes but with specific details put in place to take the experience over the top. To start off with I loved that the room was heated but not hot. Unlike hot yoga which can sometimes be overwhelming, in warm yoga, the room is heated to 85-87 degrees, a happy medium where you are less prone to injury but still comfortable.

Another part of this practice that I loved is that Amber and the other attendees didn’t take themselves too seriously. Amber encouraged everyone to have fun with their practice to try different variations and poses without of fear of getting it wrong or looking funny. This really allowed myself and other attendees to open up and try new things.

Core exercises in the warm yoga room.

Core exercises in the warm yoga room.

What muscle groups did this class work the most? Was it a great workout for your abs, butt, arms, etc.?

This was a full body class we took equal time to work our legs, arms, and core! Because it was the STRONG class we took extra time to go through different moves that strengthened our muscles. Holding poses longer and engaging our mind with what muscle groups we were working. This was definitely a calorie burner!

Did the instructor do anything to make the class extra special?

Amber was an amazing instructor! She was super sweet and knowledgeable from the moment I walked in the door. She took one look at my mat and could tell that I often had a problem slipping especially in warm/hot yoga classes. She quickly exchanged my mat for one of the studio’s mats and I must say the new mat made all the difference in my practice, keeping me from slipping and sliding while holding poses.

Click here for an explanation into the class and more info about Westside Yoga!

Click here for an explanation into the class and more info about Westside Yoga!

Throughout the class, Amber also took the time to explain different variations in each pose and help individuals find something that best suited him or her. There were several variations on typical poses that I didn’t even know about and enjoyed trying to branch out and do something more.

What was the most enjoyable part of the workout?

My favorite part of the class was about midway through where we really got into the rhythm of going through different asanas and stretching into new poses with ease. I was amazed midway through how much deeper I could get into my stretch than at the beginning of class. I also really liked the end where we played with different seated poses and my co-worker Caroline was even able to get into a complicated bind! It was amazing where our bodies were able to go by the end of class.

Any other feedback you’d like to give about this workout?

Happy attendees after class.

Happy attendees after class.

The motto of Westside Yoga is “Find Your Happy Place” and that is something that is incredibly easy to do here. Not only are Amber, the instructors, and the participants all so warm, open, and calm there is a sense of play at Westside Yoga that you don’t find at many other studios. The idea that yoga can not only be an amazing source of fitness but also a place where you can let loose and play is refreshing and encouraging.

Details: 857 Collier Rd. NW., Ste. 22, Atlanta; WestsideYoga.com

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(L to R) Best Self staffer Alex McCray and instructor Renae Murphy

(L to R) Best Self staffer Alex McCray and instructor Renae Murphy

By Alex McCray

Name of fitness facility

Marcus Jewish Community Center of Atlanta (MJCCA)

Name and length of class

Les Mills BODYPUMP – 1 hour

Name of instructor

Renae Murphy

What do attendees need to know before class starts?

If you’re a guest, you’ll have to drive through security at the front gate and show them your ID, then check in with the front desk and get a guest sticker. Be sure to allot extra time for this (15-20 minutes should do) along with getting to the fitness area of the center, putting your things away in the locker room or the cubbies in the workout room, and setting up your station.

How would you describe this workout? How does it compare to similar classes you’ve taken?

This was a great group fitness class. Even though the workout was all about low weights and high reps, it wasn’t like a standard aerobics class or other fast-paced group fitness class. I loved that it essentially turned strength training into cardio.

What muscle groups did this class work the most? Was it a great workout for your abs, butt, arms, etc.?

We used traditional moves like squats, chest presses, push-ups, and bicep curls with barbells and dumbbells to work all the major muscle groups. So be prepared to work your upper body, lower body, and abs during this full-body session.

Did the instructor do anything to make the class extra special?

Renae was an awesome instructor! She paced the class so well. Before we would switch to a new exercise she let us know a change was coming up. She started the new move with slow repetitions so that we got a feel for how to properly do it before we increased the speed of our reps. As someone that can be very uncoordinated, this made the class so easy to follow along with.

 

BODYPUMP fitness equipment

BODYPUMP fitness equipment

What was the most enjoyable part of the workout?

The music was super fun and I loved that all the exercise sets were set to a specific song. So once the song was done, you knew you were done with that specific move. I also loved the Les Mills equipment they have. The barbells and weights are incredibly easy to put on and take off, which makes a difference as you are increasing and decreasing your weight for different body parts throughout the class.

Any other feedback you’d like to give about this workout?

This is a really great workout that will get your heart pumping while also engaging all the major muscle groups. I would highly recommend adding it to your regular workout routine. Also, the MJCCA has so many great fitness class options to explore, I can’t wait to go back!

Details: 5342 Tilly Mill Rd., Atlanta; AtlantaJCC.org

Follow along with the rest of our 30 Days of Fitness Classes here.

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(L to R) instructor Hailey Swartwout, Best Self staffer Halen Adair

(L to R) instructor Hailey Swartwout, Best Self staffer Halen Adair

By Halen Adair

Name of fitness facility

The Sweat Shoppe

Name and length of class

Express Sweat – 45 mins

Name of instructor

Hailey Swartwout

What do attendees need to know before class starts?

Arrive about 10 minutes early to fill out paperwork. Make sure you have a water bottle and socks. They will provide cycling shoes at the front for you!

How would you describe this workout? How does it compare to similar classes you’ve taken?

This class was invigorating! I have a newfound passion for cycling in the heat, plus, a new respect for everyone who can do this daily. I have only done hot yoga, so trying infrared heat during a cycling class was different, and to me, more challenging. You start sweating within the first five minutes of class. During the whole class, Hailey would take us through different intervals on our bikes, targeting different muscles and challenging our endurance. We would vary between standing up and sitting down on the bikes often, and even did some tricep and bicep work while on the bike and cranked up our resistance. This class is similar to the type of intensity you’d find at most cycle studios, but at this one, you will sweat A LOT more than average due to the 80-84 degree room temperature.

The Sweat Shoppe studio

The Sweat Shoppe studio

What muscle groups did this class work the most? Was it a great workout for your abs, butt, arms, etc.?

This class is designed to be 45 minutes of cardio with some small, focused movements on your butt, triceps, and biceps. We did tricep push-ups and bicep push-ups throughout the class. You feel your hamstrings working to keep you level in your seat and your chest (pectorals) help you maintain the correct posture to ensure you’re breathing your best.

Did the instructor do anything to make the class extra special?

Hailey was so fun! Her music choices ranged from hip hop to pop hits and dance music. I loved listening to her encouraging words that helped us push all the way until the end of class. She would get off her bike and walk around to ensure everyone in the class had the correct form and was making the most of their cycling experience. She was very upbeat and never let us give up on ourselves.

What was the most enjoyable part of the workout?

Sweat Shoppe Lockers

Sweat Shoppe Lockers

This kind of workout is very challenging. The heat aspect of this class adds a whole different kind of experience than many other gyms. You are not only working out, but you’re detoxifying your body. The amount of sweat you release during this class is not only good for your muscles, but it’s also good for your blood. Hailey kept us focused on our breathing and explained the benefits of why it was so important. I loved listening to how passionate and knowledgeable she is about this class and health overall.

Any other feedback you’d like to give about this workout?

This is a workout you need to check out. I know hot cycling seems intimidating but this is the place to truly step outside of your comfort zone and find new strength within yourself. There is no doubt that after a trying this class a couple of times, you’ll fall in love with the trainers and facility. Plus, you’re body will feel AMAZING and rejuvenated after each time!

Details: 3393 Peachtree Rd., Ste. 2010A, Atlanta; TheSweatShoppe.com

Follow along with the rest of our 30 Days of Fitness Classes here.

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By Halen Adair

Co-owner of HiveFit Supplements Raul Hiteshaw and Best Self staffer Wyndi Kappes

Co-owner of HiveFit Supplements Raul Hiteshaw and Best Self staffer Wyndi Kappes

Name of fitness facility
Solcioty Fitness

Name and length of class
60 Minutes – LIFT

Name of instructor
Nikki Montesanti

What do attendees need to know before class starts?

Arrive about 10 minutes early before class to put your bags away in their cute lockers, pick up a heart rate monitor, and get signed in for the class. Make sure you are wearing tennis shoes and have a water bottle with you.

How would you describe this workout? How does it compare to similar classes you’ve taken?

This was the first class I have ever done at Solcioty and I really enjoyed it. It was similar to an Orange Theory class I have taken in the past but the lights in the studio are so awesome along with the state-of-the-art equipment they had to offer. You would focus on certain muscle groups during different phases of the workout. We worked our upper arms, back, triceps, glutes, and challenged our cardio. This workout was kind of the best of all worlds.

What muscle groups did this class work the most? Was it a great workout for your abs, butt, arms, etc.?

It was a full-body workout, but there were different exercises that focused on targeting different muscle groups. This was a great class for my core, legs, and arms which is why I would classify this workout as targeting all your muscles, just at different times throughout.

Did the instructor do anything to make the class extra special?

Nikki has the best energy. She cares so much about her clients and honestly just wants to help them reach their goals. She consistently goes around the gym to make sure everyone’s form is correct and really pushes you to keep those heart rates up. Also, her music selection was super upbeat and added a sense of motivation to keep pushing.

What was the most enjoyable part of the workout?

This kind of workout is one of my favorites. I love the whole aspect of circuit training because I never find myself getting bored or feeling like I’m using the same muscle groups over and over. And although the class was full today, I never once felt over-crowded or like I didn’t fit in. People of all levels of fitness can tackle this workout and make it custom to their own pace.

Any other feedback you’d like to give about this workout?

Click here to watch our Facebook Live with trainer Nikki and HiveFit co-owner Raul Hiteshaw.

Click here to watch our Facebook Live with trainer Nikki and HiveFit co-owner Raul Hiteshaw.

This workout facility is a must-try! They have such a gorgeous place with the most amazing, uplifting people. You immediately feel like you’re part of the gang right as you walk in, and I can’t wait to go back for another!

Plus, we were treated with an extra special surprise after the workout as My Buckhead magazine cover model and co-owner of HiveFit, Raul Hiteshaw, was there to pump everyone up post-workout with his all natural supplements. For more information on Solcioty and HiveFit click to watch the Facebook Live above!

Details: 900 Peachtree St. NE., Ste. 302, Atlanta; Solciotyfitness.com, HiveFit.com

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