Owner of Bodymass Gym, Virginia, shares why she uses a DEXA Scan to not only track her own progress, but how she helps her clients understand the truths about body composition. 

For the past 4+ years I’ve used a DEXA scan as the primary method of tracking progress for myself and for my clients. Results have helped shape prep for 8 NPC Figure Competitions as well as post-show planning

In addition to providing results for your full body Percentage of Fat, a DEXA Scan also provides compartmentalized break down of lbs of fat mass, lbs of lean mass, lbs of bone and body fat percentages of various areas in your body

With detailed accuracy, a DEXA scan also provides comparisons on each printout so you can see exactly how your body is changing

Personally, I don’t pay attention to my weight or even percent body fat. I like to ensure I stay within a certain range for lbs of lean mass (aim for 120-125lb, although I’d like to have more 💪🏼) and a certain range of lbs of fat depending on where I am in a prepping phase.

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Are You Coachable?

In our private and small group training, we provide a lot of feedback and coachable moments for our members.  We want all who step into the gym to receive the highest quality training on a daily basis.  It is also important that we keep individuals safe from injury.  

In order for you to get better and avoid injury, you must have a coachable mentality and willingness to improve each time you step into the gym.  

Here are a few questions to ask yourself to see if you are coachable:

1. Are you open to learning new techniques?

2. Do you listen to coaching cues?

3. Do you try to apply what you learned to each rep?

4. Are you responsive to feedback?

5. Do you express thanks when a trainer or coach gives you feedback?

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Live Your Life With Confidence

One time or another, I am sure we have all gone through a period where confidence in ourselves doesn't come as easy.  Low-confidence can be a result of many factors including: fear of the unknown, criticism, being unhappy with personal appearance, feeling unprepared, poor time-management, lack of knowledge or previous failures.  The confidence we have in ourselves to perform roles and tasks can increase and decrease -- some days we may feel more confident than others.

A lack of confidence can lead to a significant decline in daily performance.  It is easy to let our mind get the best of us, and has caused many to crack under pressure.  There are many ways to help improve your self-confidence:

  1. Prepare. Do your homework.  Recognize tendencies and make adjustments in the areas where your self-confidence is lacking.
  2. Practice. Do something each day to get you closer to where you want to be as an individual.  Repetition is key in skill development & motor learning.
  3. Progress.  There is always something new to learn every day.  Be open to new opportunities for growth and development.
  4. Positive. Keep a good head on your shoulders and surround yourself with supportive mentors, coaches and professionals who will help guide you.

Make it a goal to do something each day to take me a step closer to where you see yourself individually or professionally.  Some days may be better than others, regardless, these small reminders will help keep your self-confidence in check.  In order for others to believe in you and your abilities, you must first demonstrate a confidence that you believe in yourself.

Written by: Megan Osysko

You Can't Out Train a Bad Diet

You have probably heard the saying over and over again, "You can't out train a bad diet!"  That is 100% TRUE! 

A problem many individuals face is being under-fueled to perform at their optimal level on a daily basis.  Busy schedules, long days, and a lack of planning are all contributing factors.  It is important to build a strong foundation to maximize your daily performance and workout potential.


Nutrition Habits To Maximize Performance

1. Eat breakfast every morning. A morning without breakfast is like a gas tank running on empty throughout the day.

2. Eat frequently.  Aim to eat every 3-4 hours.

3. Color your plate.  Have 7-10 servings of fruits and vegetables to help reduce inflammation and muscle soreness.

4. Eat balanced snacks.  Snacks should consist of healthy fats, fiber, and protein.

5. Post-workout recovery.  Eat at least 30-60 minutes following a workout in order to refuel, aid in muscle recovery, and reduce hunger.

6. Have a plan.  Take ownership -- make a grocery list, plan your breakfast the night before, pack your snacks, and set aside time to meal prep for the week.

Evaluate your nutrition plan to identify areas in which you can make improvements.  Change a few habits at a time -- focus on one to two weaknesses to fix.  Utilize the 85/15 Rule -- eat clean at least 85% of the time.  Always remember balance and moderation when it comes to indulging.  Once new habits are adapted, you are likely to see an improvement in energy levels, recovery time, and body composition.

Written by: Megan Osysko

Is Stress Making You Fat?

Life is filled with opportunities to be stressed.  Job, spouse, kids, friends, in-laws... the list goes on!

The questions is, is this stress causing you to hold on to more fat?  The answer is most likely, YES!


When we have an elevated amount of cortisol (stress hormone) in our system, we tend to eat foods higher in sugar and fat, which over time will affect our weight.  Your body may begin to store this fat around your mid-section.  Additional weight gain starts a vicious cycle of being even more stressed due to the extra pounds you are now holding on to.  Before you know it, your metabolism is shot because you are now eating too much, or potentially not eating enough.  

How do we fix this?

1. Take time to identify what is causing you stress.  Find resources and professionals that can help you eliminate one stressor at a time.

2. Practice diaphragmatic breathing.  At Bodymass, we start each training session with a breathing technique that allows one to breath in through their nose for 4-5 seconds to fill up the belly, pausing at the top of the breath, then pressing the air out for another 4-5 seconds.

3. Get sleep.  It is recommended that individuals get 8 hours of sleep a night -- many don't get half of that.  

4. Take a rest day.  Your workouts can cause stress on the body, you need to make sure to incorporate active recovery or stretching into your weekly routine.

5. Improve your nutrition.  Aim to get 5-6 smaller meals throughout your day, with a source of protein at each meal.  This will help you stay fuller, longer, and help get your metabolism back on track.

Written by: Megan Osysko

Are you eating enough Protein?

Protein provides our bodies with energy, keeps our metabolism in check, and plays a vital role in rebuilding our muscles after exercise.  If you focus on sticking to these few simple tips, you may find yourself able to fight off hunger more easily throughout your day.

Individuals following a strength training or exercise regime, should aim to get at least 1g of protein per pound of body weight each day.  For competitive athletes, or those looking to put on more muscle, protein consumption will increase over 1g of bodyweight.  Your goal should be to consume 5-6 servings of protein per day, which means you should have a source every 2-3 hours.

Where can you get your protein sources?

1. Animal Sources: one egg or three ounces of lean meats, chicken, turkey, or fish (about the size of your palm)

2. Nuts: one ounce or two tablespoons of nut butter

3. Legumes and beans: 1/2 cup

4. Greek Yogurt: one cup


Many Americans often turn to a candy bar or other sugary or salty snack to hold us over from lunch until dinner.  A great way to get an extra source of protein throughout your day and fight off hunger is to grab a protein bar or protein shake.  It is important to be careful as to what kind you choose because some protein bars or shakes can be as high in sugar as a candy bar.  Here are a few tips on how to choose the right option to meet your goals.

Protein Bar/Shake Rules:

1. At least 10-12g of protein

2. Less than 10g of sugar

3. Less than 4g of saturated fat

4. Less than 350 calories


If you are looking for a protein bar/shake to help aid in weight-loss, choose one with at least 9g of fiber.

If you are looking for more energy throughout your day, choose a bar/shake with about 20g of carbohydrates.

If you are just looking for a snack, choose a bar/shake that is less than 200 calories and at least 4g of fiber.


Written by: Megan Osysko

Stop Putting Off Physical Therapy

How long have you had an ache or pain that is lingering? Your thought process is
that it will eventually go away? That it is not REALLY affecting my workout so it is
fine. WRONG!

The body is an incredibly complex structure, and if you want to get the most out of
your training, it has to be working efficiently. What happens when you have a pain
and continue to work through it? Your body & brain have to change the ways your
muscles and joints are moving to allow you to continue to complete the activity.
Every rep you take further deepens these compensations, and makes the original
issue even harder to fix. Not only will these compensations cost you more money
down the road due to needing more rehab visits, but they will also drastically
decrease your performance abilities, because you body is not moving efficiently.

Moral of the story, if you have something that lasts longer than 4-5 days then you
NEED to get it checked out. It many cases it takes just 1 visit to get the pain down
and to get a good program to work on over the next week. You are training at
Bodymass Gym for a reason, to get stronger. This process will happen much faster if
your body is in peak form!


You can contact us through our website at www.arlingtonperformancecare.com or
our Instagram @arlingtonperformancecare.

Written By, Guest Blogger: Dr. Kyle Paxton, Physical Therapist and Owner of Arlington Performance Care

Stick to the Basics

Last week we talked about the Minimum Effective Dose for Strength Training.  This week, I want to follow up with The Basics.  


The field of health and fitness is constantly evolving. Everyone wants to know the latest and greatest trend and they often want to see results immediately. Just like any training program you are involved in, it takes time, commitment, and determination, but it doesn’t take the latest and greatest trends to get you where you need to be. Dan John, MS, speaks “The Five Movements and the Order of Learning: How Using Gaps and Standards can Inform a Program.” He stresses the basics of a good strength training program and how, more often than not, less is more.

Principle One
“Mastery of the basic human movements trumps everything else for lean body mass quality and joint mobility.”

The Basics:
Push: Push-up
Pull: Horizontal Pull-up
Hinge: Kettlebell Swing
Squat: Goblet Squat
Loaded Carry: Farmer’s Walk

Principle Two
“Standards and gaps must be constantly assessed, in a reasonable approach.”

If you are looking to further challenge yourself and take your training to the next level, use these five pieces of equipment to really get the most benefit from your strength training program.

The Killer Apps:
Barbell: Deadlift and Press
Kettlebell: Goblet Squat, Swing, Turkish Get-up
TRX: Rows, T-Y-I Pulls
Ab wheel: Ab Wheel
Mini-band: Lateral Walks

When you attend a training session at Bodymass Gym, you will find our programming set around The Basics.  Strength training is often used to complement another goal you are trying to achieve, or simply help you be the best version of yourself each day. Talk with a trained professional, set up a program including the basics, stick to the plan, and watch your results unfold over the course of 4-6 weeks. 

Written By: Megan Osysko