Summer Newsletter 2014!

Welcome New Trainers:
Kyle and Kim! 

Kyle Appellof, HFS 

Kyle Prof Pic


Bachelors of Science, Exercise Science, Central Connecticut State University, 2014

Certifications and Experience:

American College of Sports Medicine, Health Fitness Specialist, 2014: ACSM Health Fitness Specialists assists those with medically controlled diseases and health conditions, as well as apparently healthy clients, in adopting and maintaining healthy lifestyle behaviors. Academic preparation also includes fitness management, administration, and supervision.

Class LL Football Athlete, 2004-2006

Future Fitness, Newington, CT, 2014: Trained professional athletes in the MLB and NHL; additional professional responsibilities include: youth soccer trainer, adult rugby group-training, and circuit training for Berlin High School football.

CPR/AED Certified, American Heart Association, 2013

Motivation for Fitness:

I have been an athlete for the majority of my life. Being active is both a habit as well as a conscientious part of my lifestyle. I strive to increase my personal health and fitness as well as that of any individual I work with.


I enjoy playing basketball and volleyball for leisure and softball competitively. In recent years, golf has proven to be an amazing stress reliever as well as a great way to keep active. I strive to exercise 4-5 days a week and do something active every day.  I am a graduate of Xavier High School in Middletown and Central Connecticut State University. I chose to go into Exercise Science because I have had three knee surgeries and I want to be able to help others rehabilitate and increase their functional abilities so that they may reach their fitness goals.


“It isn’t the mountains ahead to climb that wear you out; it’s the pebble in your shoe.”-Muhammad Ali

Kimberly Cooper, C.P.T.

Bachelors of Science, Exercise Science, University of Maine, 2011

Certifications and Relevant Experience:
Exercise Technician, ProEx Physical Therapy, 2012-present

Assistant Coach, Track and Field- Sprinters and Multi-Events, University of Maine, 2008-2011

Teaching Assistant, Adapted Physical Education, 2010

Volunteer Lifeguard, American Field Service: 2009-2010

a nonprofit organization that allows high school students the opportunity to travel abroad. Students came from all over the world for 1 year and lived with families across the US to experience the United States culture and lifestyle. I volunteered for their Maine branch for weekend events that allowed all AFS students to come together a few times a year to share their experiences with each other.

Health Professions Club: 2008-2011

Dental Outreach: 2009-2011

Visited local elementary schools to explain the importance and educate young children on oral health and also included a week-long trip to northern Main to screen/educate migrant farm workers.

Swim Instructor and Lifeguard, 2006-2010

Interests and Specialties:

Hiking, Camping, Biking, Running Skiing, Nutrition, ANYTHING WITH KIDS!!!

Motivation for Fitness:

I have always been active, athletic and excited to keep my body moving. It makes me feel good- about my health, my body, and my mind. Staying active and fit is great way for me to stay involved with my community, have fun with my friends and family, and works as my stress reliever while enhancing my serenity. I can’t imagine my life without it.

Health Quote:

“Try and fail, but don’t EVER fail to try!” – Stephan Kaggwa

Student/Faculty Membership Specials
September 2014!

Do you have friends or family that want to get into shape but keep putting off joining a gym? 

We’ll set them up with a phenomenal monthly rate, a complimentary 60-minute consultation with one of our trainers, and a discounted massage therapy session!!

 $20/Month Membership for Students

 $28/Month Faculty Membership

Training and Massage Therapy Specials Available!*  

*Student memberships and massage therapy discounts limited to new members and 1st time massage therapy clients.

**Valid student ID required

***Must be 18 years or older OR accompanied by a parent or guardian at the time of enrollment

Heather moved back to CT two and a half years ago after her son was born. She has since had a second child, bought a new house, and is ready to share her years of management experience with Excel Fitness.  Prior to moving back to CT, Heather managed the Fitness and Wellness Division of Blue Cross Blue Shield North Carolina.  She was charged with promoting health and wellness to the entire employee population by coordinating health fairs, incentive programs, and running the fitness center.  We are looking forward to Heather’s expertise in managing all aspects of the Excel Fitness personal training program, new memberships, and team building events!


August Member Spotlight: Honoring Susan Balaban! 

Excel Fitness is honoring Susan Balaban for her dedication and commitment to health and fitness. Susan first came to Excel Fitness after pleading with her daughter, Excel Fitness trainer Ilicia Balaban for over three years to help motivate her to exercise and lose weight. Ilicia finally granted her mother’s request as a 70th birthday present, a gift that keeps on giving. Ilicia remarks, “My mom has good days and bad days but regardless she demonstrates incredible persistence and respect for her strengths and limitations. Even when she really doesn’t want to work out, she shows up on time for sessions and respects the professionalism of the trainer/trainee relationship. Working with my mother has proven to be one of my greatest challenges and most rewarding victories. I have witnessed incredible changes and improvements in both her confidence and quality of life!” 

Susan adds: I’ve had diabetes type II for 42 years and the nasty consequences of that disease for more than three decades. It has left me in pain most of the time and my flexibility, my balance and ambulatory abilities compromised. I don’t like to exercise so in the past I had periodic spurts of treadmill work and then long absences from the gym.

Four years ago, my daughter Ilicia became a licensed physical trainer and began working for a unique gym, Excel Fitness in West Hartford. I call it unique because Excel caters to a “mature clientele” with care and understanding of where they are in their physical health.

January 2013, Ilicia began training me at Excel. I walked in that day hanging on rather firmly to my cane. The atmosphere was warm and friendly and Ilicia’s gentle expertise, exuberant, spirited personality and radiant smile helps me to enjoy the experience and I keep coming back for more; NOW, without my cane.

Thank you Excel Fitness and Ilicia!


SAVE THE DATE: 4TH Annual Wine Tasting to Benefit Making Strides Against Breast Cancer 2014!
Thursday, October 16th 2014 6-8 p.m.
Recipe Spotlight: Healthy Summer Dessert Tips: Grilled Pineapple with Nutella: 
Grill the pineapple slices until heated through and beginning to brown, about 3 minutes per side. It’s important to leave the pineapples on the grill, untouched so that you can create the grill marks.
While the pineapples are cooking, whisk the mascarpone and vanilla in a small bowl to blend. Set aside.
Combine the chocolate-hazelnut spread and cream in a small bowl and stir to combine. Place in a microwave on high for about 2 minutes, stirring every 20 seconds to blend well. Alternatively, you can combine the chocolate-hazelnut spread and cream in a small saucepan, set over low heat, and cook for about 5 minutes, stirring constantly. Heat until satiny smooth and easy to pour, about 3 to 5 minutes.
Transfer the pineapple slices to a large platter. Drizzle the warm chocolate-hazelnut sauce over.
Dollop the mascarpone mixture atop. Sprinkle with the hazelnuts and serve.
Read more at:

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *