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Bod Pod track Airman fitness

The Bod Pod is used to determine a person’s body fat, weight and measure their resting metabolic rate. (U.S. Air Force photo/Senior Airman J.T. Armstrong)

The Bod Pod is used to determine a person’s body fat, weight and measure their resting metabolic rate. (U.S. Air Force photo/Senior Airman J.T. Armstrong)

Sheena Swanner, Health and Wellness Center registered dietitian nutritionist, sits in the Bod Pod at Minot Air Force Base, N.D., Feb. 24, 2017. The Bod Pod is available for active duty military members, dependents 17 and older, Department of Defense retirees and civilian contractors. (U.S. Air Force photo/Senior Airman J.T. Armstrong)

Sheena Swanner, Health and Wellness Center registered dietitian nutritionist, sits in the Bod Pod at Minot Air Force Base, N.D., Feb. 24, 2017. The Bod Pod is available for active duty military members, dependents 17 and older, Department of Defense retirees and civilian contractors. (U.S. Air Force photo/Senior Airman J.T. Armstrong)

MINOT AIR FORCE BASE, N.D. -- With spring is right around the corner, Airmen will begin to exercise outdoors for a variety of reasons including getting in shape for summer.

To get the most out of work-outs, whether losing fat or gaining muscle, the Health and Wellness Center says it’s important to know a little bit about how your body works.

The HAWC has a tool called the Bod Pod to help with fitness goals. The pod is available for active duty military members, dependents 17 and older, Department of Defense retirees and civilian contractors.

”The Bod Pod is used to determine body fat and weight, as well as measure resting metabolic rate,” said Lori Halvorson, Health and Wellness Center health promotion coordinator. “Your RMR is the amount of calories that your body burns at rest, everyone’s rate is different.”

According to Halvorson, it’s important to know your RMR, especially if the goal is to lose fat or gain muscle mass.

“Without knowing your RMR, you’re not maximizing your workouts,” said Halvorson. “Not getting enough calories can slow your metabolism, burning lean muscle instead of fat.”

After a Bod Pod measurement, Sheena Swanner, the HAWC’s registered dietitian nutritionist, interprets the results to advise a safe calorie intake amount.

“From their RMR, I can better work with a patient to reach their calorie intake and weight goals,” said Swanner. “The Bod Pod isn’t only for athletes or overweight individuals, it’s for everyone.”

The entire appointment takes about 15 minutes, most of which is getting properly clothed for the machine. An individual will only spend about a minute in the Bod Pod itself.

There are two guidelines for Airmen interested in using the Bod Pod. Don’t eat, drink or exercise within two hours prior to the appointment, and wear form-fitting spandex to ensure an accurate reading.

Proper, form-fitting clothing is important because the Bod Pod relies on air displacement to measure body composition. Lose clothing can render a less accurate reading.

“I personally think the Bod Pod is awesome – it’s fast and it’s 99.7% accurate,” said Halvorson. “Members can also come back in eight to 10 weeks to compare their results. It’s a great motivator.”

To make an appointment, contact the HAWC at 701-723-5399 or 701-723-5274.
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