The best fitness advice around town 

BSA - May Best Fitness Mr. Shut Up and TrainQ: What is better, working out at home or at the gym? 

A: A quick 20 or 30-minute at-home workout can be just as effective as going to the gym. You want to make sure you’re hitting the big three: legs, back and chest. Working larger muscle groups will burn more calories. Push-ups, dips and body rows are great upper body exercises. For your lower body, try using light dumbbells with compound movements such as squat presses and lunge curls. Use a jump rope for one-minute intervals in between strength training.

Rahman “Ray” Grayson, AKA “Mr. Shut Up and Train” 

BSA - May Best Fitness Ulrick Bien-AimeQ: I get spring fever! What exercises can I do outside to enjoy the warm weather? 

A: I believe in a back-to-basics approach that combines stretching and strengthening, which you can do anywhere. Simple exercises like planks and pull ups work the upper body, while lunges and squats work the lower body. When the weather turns warm, I have my clients outside running suicide springs, throwing tires and jumping in sand pits just to keep things interesting.

Ulrick Bien-Aime of Bien-Aime Strength and Stretch Studio 

BSA - May Best Fitness D. NorrisFriday Night Moves 

It’s time to salsa out the stress of the week! Join instructor D. Norris at this fun adult dance class, presented by the Atlanta Ballet Centre for Dance Education and the Woodruff Arts Center. Held every Friday from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. at the Woodruff Arts Center, this class costs just $10 to attend, and only $5 for students.


Pure Barre in the Park_cred Pure Barre Virginia HighlandsPure Barre in the Park 

The Virginia Highlands Pure Barre location wants you to tuck and pulse in the park this month. On Saturday, May 2 from 9:30 to 11:30 a.m., join them in Piedmont Park for a great workout with a side of fresh air. Recharge with tasty treats from KIND Health Snacks and Dtox, and don’t forget to pick up your goodie bag after class! Register now for just $20.

Details: (404) 883-3883,

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Sibley, Kelley IMG_0311  8x10CEO of Bamboo Juices Kelley Sibley is here to share her best advice for mothering young children.

What is an enjoyable part of mothering children at this stage? 

Watching her become more interactive with me every day. She can now smile and laugh with me, which is so much fun!

What is a challenge of this stage? 

Sleep! I am so tired! My baby is up during the night and up again early in the morning, and it’s really hard to work all day on a few hours of sleep.

What is the biggest misconception people have about this stage? 

I might be the only one who this applies to, but I just had no idea how hard it would be. My sister and friends made it look so easy.

How can Best Self readers support moms in their own lives? 

Give her the gift of health. My husband watches our baby while I take a long walk and puts her to bed most nights so I can take a few minutes to read my health books that I find so inspiring. The best gift is time to do what inspires you.


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Tutu Tuesday pic (1)

Komen Atlanta staff members joined Footprints Dance Alliance for a #TutuTuesday flash mob on April 14.

Support Susan G. Komen Atlanta for the next few Tuesdays by wearing a tutu and posting photos on social media. These #TutuTuesday posts will raise awareness about breast health and help bring more supporters out to Race for the Cure, which takes place later this month on May 9 at Lenox Square Mall. Post your tutu pics and be sure to come out for this year’s race – the 25th annual event!


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Each month, Best Self publisher Sherri Adair shares her favorite places, people and events from around Atlanta. Here are her picks for the month of May: 

BSA - SNUG camisoleSNUG camisole - The team at Livi Rae Lingerie recommended this camisole to me, and I love it! As the name suggests, these tanktops are form fitting and comfortable. They smooth out your shape and come in a variety of colors. I got mine for just $28.

Details: 440 Ernest Barrett Parkway, Suite #31, Kennesaw, GA, (770) 429-7004,,

Credit:  Joeff Davis King of Pop's Chocolate Sea SaltKing of Pops Chocolate Sea Salt Pop - As the weather warms up, I’m starting to see more King of Pops carts out and about. My favorite go-to pop is their Chocolate Sea Salt, but all of their fruity flavors are great. Stop at a cart the next time you see one, or swing by their brick and mortar location.

Details: 337 Elizabeth St., Suite B, Atlanta, GA, (678) 732-9231,

BSA - Le TriskellLe Triskell Creperie - My favorite dish from this little French restaurant is their chicken salad on a bed of greens. I recently learned that they source the sunflower sprouts in this dish from an Atlanta farmer – I love how fresh and local it is!

Details: Tuxedo Atrium, 3833 Roswell Road, Suite 109A, Atlanta, GA, (404) 814-8208


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IMG_6546 high res (1)This month, the Advisory Board members share their memorable client and patient success stories. 

Diana Hofsommer | Camp Horizon | Volunteerism

The Power of Encouragement 

At Camp Horizon, where some foster children come in with very real struggles and emotional hurdles to jump, campers can have huge breakthrough. But many times, the success stories, are as straightforward as mastering a new skill or achieving a goal. Diana Hofsommer, who has been volunteering at Camp Horizon’s summer camp program for 10 years, remembers her very first camper as one of those who finally mastered a skill.

“When I started, it was her second year at camp, so she was 9. She was a kid who was really gregarious, a lot of fun, but clearly never had anyone encouraging her. Every time she wanted to try something new, she gave up very quickly. So I spent those summer camp weeks encouraging her and telling her she could do it.”

Finally, during this camper’s last year at summer camp, when she was 11, she became determined to learn to swim. Though she had struggled to stick to it in the past, Hofsommer remembers, this summer was different. “She took the swim lessons every day, and every day she took the swim test, and every day she didn’t pass it.” She didn’t give up, though, and on the last day of camp, this camper passed the swim test and received her green armband, signaling that she could go down the side and swim in the deep end. 

“It was a very victorious moment for her,” Hofsommer remembers. “This camper was an orphan – she lived with a grandmother who didn’t drive, so her case manager would come pick her up. She got in the car when it was time to leave, and she just raised up her little writs with her green armband as if to say, “I did it’.”

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IMG_6824 high resThis month, the Advisory Board members share their memorable client and patient success stories. 

Amanda Hair | Bob Steele Salon | Hair

Confidence is Key 

At Bob Steele Salon, success is measured by the clients themselves. Amanda Hair explains that the happiest clients are the ones who “really own who they are. They’re not trying to be someone else. When they come into the salon, they’re just looking for us to help them be a better version of who they are.” And that’s exactly what Bob Steel’s stylists do. Their goal is to listen to you and work with you to achieve your goals for your look. At the end of the day, Hair says, “We want our clients to feel confident in how they feel and look with whatever style they choose, because after all, nothing is more attractive than confidence.”

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BSA - Jeffrey DurmerDr. Jeffrey Durmer from FusionHealth answers a reader’s question about sleep.

Q: I know I should get more sleep, but does it really affect my overall health? 

Yes. Around two-thirds of Americans say they don’t get enough sleep at night. Aside from restoring energy, quality sleep lowers your risk for chronic diseases like diabetes, hypertension and heart disease, improves your mood and can help you maintain a healthy weight. Sleeping for less than eight hours per night can alter hormones that affect appetite, leading us to seek higher calorie foods and gain unwanted pounds.


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BSA - May Best BulletinOn May 2, celebrate Independent Bookstore Day at Decatur’s Little Shop of Stories. They’re going all out for this day, since it coincides with the store’s 10th anniversary. In the downtown square, enjoy music from local theater companies, performances from storytellers and even a visit from Judy Schachner, the best-selling author and illustrator of the SkippyJon Jones series. And of course, stop in the store itself to peruse their titles, chat with their expert staff and celebrate Independent Bookstore Day with a few purchases.

Details: 133A East Court Square, Decatur, GA, (404) 37306300,

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This month, the Advisory Board members share their memorable client and patient success stories. 

IMG_6880 high resMadison James | B 98.5 | Fitness/WeightLoss

Enjoy Your Options 

For Madison James, improving your fitness is just the beginning of a long line of benefits you’ll see from getting active. High on that list is the benefit of fashion choices! “Who doesn’t feel better when you go into the store, and your selection has gone from five to 50?” she says. ” I had someone that I was mentoring and working with who had been overweight all her life,” James remembers. “We pulled off 50 pounds, and she was like, “Oh my gosh, I didn’t know that I could wear certain clothes!” That’s what motivates me,” James says. It’s not really about the pounds – it’s about the freedom that health and fitness give everyone.


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BSA - Habitat for Humanity

Volunteers raise the first wall of the Habitat for Humanity of Northwest Metro Atlanta home for a deserving family in Mableton. The home build on Valentine’s Day kicked off the 2015 build season for the nonprofit that serves Cobb, Douglas and Paulding Counties.

Home is where the heart is, but it’s also where many Americans’ investments are. Investing in a house has a positive impact on personal wealth and community stability, but buying a home – especially for people supporting a family on a low income – presents many challenges. If your entire paycheck is dedicated to the daily finances of life, it can be next to impossible to save the amount needed for a down payment or qualify for a traditional mortgage, preventing many hardworking adults and parents from making that investment.

Habitat for Humanity is best known for its signature “builds” that bring the community together to build a house for a deserving family. But in addition to actually building the house, Habitat also helps families by making their purchasing requirements more realistic. The Atlanta Habitat for Humanity website details the benefits, such as a no-interest mortgage and low closing costs – nothing more than an $800 “good faith deposit.” Habitat also offers perks such as energy efficient building standards and brand new Whirlpool appliances.

If you’re ready to swing a hammer for your fellow Atlantans, join Habitat for Humanity’s Northwest Metro Atlanta affiliate as they break ground on a new build site on April 2. Volunteering with Habitat requires no specialized experience – onsite training is provided for anyone interested in participating. Check out other Atlanta area affiliates by visiting and typing in your zip code.

Another great way to help is through the Habitat for Humanity ReStore. Donate your new or gently used furniture, appliances, cabinets, building materials and more to any ReStore location, which will then sell these items at a fraction of retail price in order to raise money for more builds. A new Habitat ReStore opened in late March in Roswell, and you can find a full list of local ReStore locations at 

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