This past month I had the privilege of interviewing Joseph Champa to get his professional thoughts on maintaining men’s health. Joseph is a registered dietician and certified strength and conditioning coach. He is currently the HIT program director at Elevate gym in Dickinson, ND.
Connect: What is your top men’s health advice?
Joseph Champa: Be consistent in the small things: Drink plenty of water, get ample sleep, be active, and eat mostly minimally processed foods.
Connect: If you could only recommend one exercise, what would it be?
Joseph Champa: The one you hate the least. You will do it more😊 Seriously though, it’s a loaded question because everyone is an individual and has different goals.
Connect: Do you recommend any diets? Why or why not?
Joseph Champa: Yes I do. I recommend the diet that’ll support the person the most! Each “diet” looks different. The consistent thing I recommend is minimally processed foods.
Connect: Are there any signs one is focusing too much on weight loss/muscle gain? If yes, what should be done if signs are noticed?
Joseph Champa: Yes, if these things take over a person’s life and they start neglecting the things that are truly important. Pumping the brakes a bit and maintaining is a great start to increase awareness and be truly honest of where the person is at. If unwilling to course correct or even aware there is a problem, look to seek professional help.
Connect: What do you recommend for time dedicated to exercise and what would be considered too much?
Joseph Champa: Depends on the goal. General activity level is about 45-60 minutes daily. This doesn’t have to be in the weight room or cardio. It could mean increasing heart rate and doing that for the above amount of time.
Connect: Is counting calories important for men?
Joseph Champa: For most, no. If at elite levels, yes. Calorie counting is effective to see trends and what a person is eating regularly. Once this is established and the person is aware, not necessary in my opinion. In elite levels like sports performance and bodybuilding, it is important because the person is attempting to get a small percentage better and that’s crucial for success in competition.
Connect: Are there better ways to track nutrition?
Joseph Champa: Yes! I personally have all my nutrition clients follow 3 simple guidelines which ultimately get improved health. For example, the three guidelines might look like this: drink more water, eat 4 fruits/veggies daily, and take vitamins. This, over time, will get improved results and outcomes without the complexity of most systems which rely on counting calories/macronutrients & weighing food.
Connect: Do you recommend personal training for people just starting out?
Joseph Champa: Yes, but I am biased because I am a personal trainer. Honestly, most people should move properly and have solid mechanics before lifting weights.
Connect: Is personal training offered at Elevate/what types of training are offered?
Joseph Champa: Yes! Elevate Health offers a lot of personal training. We have 5 trainers at the facility and offer 1 on 1 and group training. The nice part about our training facility is that it is separate from the general gym area. We understand most people training are a little more shy about working out with the public and that’s why we have a private training area where only personal training is allowed.
We offer general fitness training and sports performance! We currently have a few members and clients who we are training for high level rodeo.
We want to thank Joseph for taking the time to answer our questions and sharing his insights into men’s health. I hope this encouraged you to continue on your health journey. If you are just beginning to take steps to care for yourself physically, remember even small changes can have a big impact over time. You are worth taking care of.
Until next time,