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Julie Gleeson, a certified personal trainer at the YMCA of Central Maryland in Towson, believes in building strong muscles and combating fat. “Strong muscles burn calories more efficiently than fat. The more muscle mass a person has, the less fat and the quicker that person can metabolize calories taken in,” she says.

In a personal training session with Leslie Bradley, 47, she demonstrates the proper way to perform various exercises and avoid injury. “Many injuries are caused by using the wrong technique,” says Gleeson.

“Another thing people do is to do a lot of reps and use improper form. It is better to use proper form and do fewer reps than to do the exercise wrong,” says Gleeson.

Bradley was a dancer years ago and joined the YMCA about one month ago. She says her fitness routine includes running after her 7-year-old, but she has one goal in mind.

“I just want to feel comfortable in a bathing suit,” says Bradley.

Like many other people, Bradley sees things that no one else sees about her body that she says need work. She is long and lean and her years of dancing are apparent.

Julie Gleeson is the person to help her accomplish her goal. She works her clients hard, but with caution. With every move she urges, “If you feel pain, stop.” She does not mean that if you are feeling wimpy you can stop, that will never happen. Muscle fatigue is good she says and she will push past that discomfort.

Many people have not exercised in years and their muscles are not up to the task, but persistence will get you there.

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