ERIC OSSERMAN - No one will mistake me for an elite athlete. As a spectator, I have seen the faces of the NY marathoners on Mile 23. Frankly, I would rather stay home. I'm a 52-year-old guy afflicted with the musculoskeletal issues of a life spent working at a desk. At age 40, I herniated two disks. There began a life of stretching and working out with trainers. I liked nearly all my dozen trainers, but then I met Joe, truly a breed apart. Joe, because he is an elite athlete himself and a student of human anatomy, knows all the injuries I could sustain at my "hazardous" professional job and how to treat them. He arrives at our house full of joy and enthusiasm, ready to challenge me with a battery of head-to-toe exercises designed to strengthen and build endurance, using principally my own body weight. He brings in plenty of novel exercises, such as to tighten glutes (not something a man typically desires). He has a whole battery of exercises with ropes, which really are a lot of fun, and prepare me for a tryout with our local fire department. Finally, the kettlebells to tighten my core. He respects my need to rest, which I appreciate. I lack the balance of a gymnast, the grace of a dancer, and the strength of a football player. Nonetheless, after our exercise I feel their equal.
ILENE LAUFER, MD - My goal for many years had been to run a 50 mile race. I would never have been able to accomplish this without Elizabeth’s expertise, encouragement and support. She helped me rehabilitate injuries I thought I was destined to live with and taught me how to properly hydrate and use nutrition during long training runs and races. The sessions I had and lessons I learned from her will help keep me running until I am 90 and prevent further injuries. I was also always in awe of her and all her own ultramarathon accomplishments (which she was so humble about) and that served as such inspiration for my goals. Thanks to Elizabeth I crossed the finish line of the Nashville Ultramarathon with a huge smile on my face. It was a privilege for me to work with someone of her caliber as an athlete and a person.
MARK WEINFELD - Mark started training with us in 2007 when he was told by his orthopedic that because of the injuries to his knees, back, etc. he would never be able to run again nor should he and that this is something he would have to live with. Today, Mark has just completed another marathon, the 2010 NYC Marathon! In 2014 he will participate in The North Face Endurance Challenge for the 3rd year. He is free to adventure as he chooses. Here is a quote from Mark about one of his many running accomplishments.
“Just wanted to quickly check in. I hope you and Elizabeth are enjoying/enjoyed the holiday weekend. I am delighted to report that I ran an amazing race (for me) in Cranford today. My previous best time for a 4 miler was 33:35, a pace of 8:23. This morning, I did everything you suggested, right down to running a mile to warm up just before the race. The result was that I shaved a full minute and 26 seconds off my previous best, running at a pace of 8:02! My time for the race was 32:09. I am not that far from cracking the 7 minute barrier! Thanks again for everything!”
MARIANNE SANTANGELO - I have been working with Joe Azze from Mountain Peak Fitness for two years. My purpose in working with Joe was to increase my endurance and to feel strong throughout my mountain bike races. Joe put together a training program that improved my core & functional strength which allowed me to feel stronger and more confident on my bike. He also gave me a program and shared his knowledge and experience of how I should train on the bike. His enthusiasm and passion for what he does and his desire to always learn is why I continue to train with him. I have learned a lot about nutrition, hydration, and recovery which play very important roles in helping an athlete perform at his or her peak level. I can't say enough good things about Mountain Peak Fitness and would highly recommend Joe to anyone who would like to get in shape or improve on their current fitness level.
MIKE WALDMAN - Mike started training with Mountain Peak Fitness 2 and half years ago. When Mike joined our team he couldn't walk briskly for more than 10 min at a time and was 60lbs over weight. Today, Mike has completed 5 half marathons, several 5ks, 10ks and his first 10k trail race. He is a true inspiration to us all. Way to go MIKE! Here are a few words from Mike...
“I met Elizabeth in July of 2007 when I got worried about getting out of breath just going up one flight of stairs. When I met her, I could barely do 10 minutes on the elliptical, and I am now about to run the New York City Marathon. I've lost about 60 pounds and my body is tight and muscular. Elizabeth has always been very supportive of me, and believes in me even when I didn’t. I thought a personal trainer would help jump start a fitness routine, I did not expect that it would change my life and take me to places I could not even imagine in my wildest dreams. I feel so, so very grateful to have been working with Elizabeth, and I can't recommend her enough.”
ALI RAMIREZ - “In training for the North Face 50 Mile Endurance Challenge in Bear Mtn. N.Y., Elizabeth’s sensible approach broke my training down for the race into manageable legs, the distance between the race’s ten aid stations. We met once a week to run a leg of it together, then I'd spend the rest of the week on that section training and practicing my navigation skills. She taught me map-reading and orienteering, how to run correctly on trails (hiking the hills, powering through the down hills). She changed out my shoes and began prescribing corrective exercises, foam rolling and dynamic warm ups to undo some of the imbalances that are the legacy of almost 20 years of working a desk job. The longest run I completed prior to the race was a 50k on the course that she and Joe simulated. They created a race environment by providing food and nutrition at points along the course that would be aid stations on race day as well as running with me along various sections ensuring I didn’t get lost. Thanks to her training plan, not only was I mentally and physically prepared on race day but I was running pain free for the first time in my life…This is after training for a 50 miler! Thank you Elizabeth!” - Ali