Helping others get fit

Published 12:00 am Friday, August 19, 2005

Zeke Brown has been in great shape for years. Now, he hopes to help Suffolkians get that way as well.

&uot;When people talk about fitness, I know a lot,&uot; said the Montgomery, Ala. native in his Dutchland Trail home, which holds a small gym. &uot;People used to ask, ‘How can I lose weight?’ ‘How can I get my legs bigger?’ ‘How can I improve my bench?’ I could help them.&uot;

A certified persona trainer since 1990 (and multi-time national powerlifting champion), Brown moved to Suffolk in 2003 after spending 23 years in the army. He’s also qualified to teach Pilates, spinning and aerobics, and spent a year in Fallujah, Iraq as a sports and recreation manager for the Haliburton Corporation. He’s now running ZB Fitness, a private fitness company.

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Beginning today, the News-Herald will periodically publish Brown’s works on getting and staying physically fit.

&uot;That will keep me sharp,&uot; he said of the writings. &uot;I’ll be working on nutritional training, fitness training, all sorts of things. There won’t be anything high tech or fancy. People can learn how to gain mass or lose weight, instead of a yo-yo, such as if they lost 20 pounds and gained 35 in three months.&uot;

Back in June, Brown headed to Richmond to take a test to become a Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist, for professionals who design and implement strength training and conditional programs for athletes in a team setting. The exam began with a series of questions about scientific foundation.

&uot;They asked about things like creating bone mass and dealing with the respiratory system,&uot; he said. &uot;There were questions about basic weight management and nutrition.&uot;

Then came a selection known as Practical/Applied, in which participants were asked to analyze a set of videos.

&uot;We watched athletes doing agility drills, weight training and sprinting, and we had to say what they were doing wrong,&uot; Brown.

After the test, he said, &uot;I was sweating bullets for six weeks. It was a tough, tough exam.&uot;

Fortunately, the results came through in mid-July.

&uot;It was like I’d hit the lotto.&uot;

Aside from training, Brown hopes to work with a local high school or college as a strength and conditioning coach. Someday, he’d like to teach a Ph.D. program at Old Dominion University.

&uot;I have to get my name out,&uot; he said. &uot;I’m good at what I do, and word will get around.&uot;