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HEALTH & FITNESS - Rory Marsh's wellness programme

Published:Monday | January 25, 2010 | 1:00 AM

Latoya Grindley, Gleaner Writer



Rory Marsh says he has always been interested in nutrition and fitness. Helping others to achieve fitness and health goals is therapeutic for Rory Marsh.

Helping people to achieve their short-, medium- and long-term fitness and health goals through wellness consultancy is now a fixture in the health and fitness arena in North America. After gaining the relevant training and experience, Rory Marsh has brought this service to Jamaica through his Rory Marsh Wellness Programme.

The brand manager for Hart Hill natural juices, distributed by National Meats and Food Distributors Limited, Marsh has always been involved in athletic activities. "I have competed for Jamaica in Commonwealth and Pan American Games in discus, and when I went away on a scholarship to the University of South Florida, I was exposed to a wide range of sporting activities."

With positions in teaching at the tertiary level and subsequently marketing, his love for fitness was never ignored. "At National Meats, I actually started an athletic competition and sports day."

However, while he had the passion for sports and athletics, it was a frightening, personal experience which propelled him to start his wellness consultancy programme. " In Christmas of '07, I had a seizure. I never read the labels on anything I consumed. And about 4 o'clock one morning, after drinking about three drinks with caffeine, taurine and, preservatives, I had a massive seizure."

This resulted in Marsh being hospitalised and, while there is no definite conclusion, doctors suspected that the drinks were the cause of the attack. "Drinks with those ingredients give your body a false sense of alertness. When your body needs rest and you drink them, it fools your body and eventually it will shut down," says Marsh.

Healthier lifestyle

Deciding to live a healthier lifestyle, with greater attention to reading labels, the health enthusiast, decided to pursue a diploma course in fitness and nutrition.

Graduating last December, the fitness instructor and nutritionist said the course was really enlightening. "It opened my eyes to many things. It also prompted me to enter my company in the National Health Fund corporate work-it-out challenge, where I was the captain. I worked with all the team members, using the knowledge I garnered from the course."

Marsh captained his team to victory, having lost the most pounds combined.

With further work experience and knowledge, the wellness consultancy was launched in January. "Available in Ocho Rios and Kingston, I will do sessions with persons to assess their overall lifestyle. I work with people to achieve their ideal lifestyle to live at their optimum. I deal with the physical, mental and even the emotional well-being of the client."

Following the evaluation and assessment, the client gets a 'prescription' to inform them of what needs to be done to achieve the goals. "After assessing them, I refer them to personal trainers, doctors, chiropractors and physiotherapists, just to name a few. The 'prescription' is what they take to the different people who will address the specific problems."

As it relates to the gym, Marsh recommends the type of workout programme, which the personal trainers will follow. "Normally, people just go to the gym and workout and nothing really changes with them. With this consultancy programme, we look at the nutritional aspect, physical well being and special nee.ds. All of the vital signs are checked".

Having a core group of persons whom he works with, a client's budget is taken into consideration before recommending a programme. "I don't always recommend people to gyms, if dance classes, walking and certain other exercises can be done. From a nutritional standpoint, meal plans to guide intake is done, especially within the client's budget."

Therapeutic

Marsh recognises that fitness and wellness encompass many things that are crucial in helping people achieve their goals. "Each person has individual needs. Some people want to lose weight, some are stressed and some may have constant headaches and a feeling of lethargy. There are some who just have short-term goals such as to tone abs and legs."

He considers himself an advocate for nutrition and good health. He says it is therapeutic for him to share information with clients and to help them live and achieve a healthy lifestyle.

To get Marsh's assistance and service costs of $500 per session. The first consultation lasts for approximately 90 minutes, and subsequent fortnightly sessions last between 30 and 40 minutes. Sessions are used to evaluate and follow up on clients' progress.

Rory Marsh can be emailed at rorymarsh@yahoo.com.

latoya.grindley@gleanerjm.com