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2014 Member Awards

December 19, 2014 2 comments

At the end of each year we honor our Cooper Fitness Center Dallas members who strive to live according to the mission of personal wellness. We are thrilled to announce this year’s winners. All of our winners were nominated by fellow Cooper Fitness Center members as well as Cooper teammates. These individuals not only lead a lifestyle of personal wellness incorporating fitness and proper nutrition into their daily habits, but they serve as role models to others and are active in their community. All winners were honored with Drs. Cooper and Cooper Fitness Center’s management team earlier this week—congratulations!

George Graffy, Male of the Year

George Graffy, Male of the Year

Male of the Year: George Graffy

George is a stranger to no one. While busy training with Robert Treece nearly every day of the week, he’s always eager to interact and meet new friends at Cooper Fitness Center. From two years of training, George has worked consistently to lose 20 pounds and build strong muscle.

George shared his time with Robert so that his son, Andrew, could combat a knee injury during his senior lacrosse season at St. Marks where he went on to win the State Championship. Along with his son, George’s wife also works out at Cooper Fitness Center with Collete Cole through the Female Focus program.

As a graduate of University of Penn and Northwestern, George is well-connected and an excellent ambassador for Cooper Fitness Center.

“George is a guy who always brings more to the table than he takes away,” said Robert Treece, Cooper Fitness Center Professional Fitness Trainer. “When interacting with him you feel encouraged yourself and you feel better off than before he came in.”

When George began his weight loss endeavors, he confessed that he paid his son $5 per pound lost for accountability. Aside from training with Robert Treece, George has also worked with Paul Nally, Joshua Cuellas and Lisa Hanley, all Professional Fitness Trainers at Cooper Fitness Center. The Cooper Aerobics campus has become a second home to George and his family, including his co-workers who participated in a corporate meeting at Cooper Hotel & Conference Center.

Vivian Dimas, Female of the Year

Vivian Dimas, Female of the Year

Female of the Year: Vivian Dimas

This time last year, in preparation for the National Duathlon Race in Arizona, Vivian encountered a terrible accident and was hit by a car while training, knocking her off of her bike by impact. Vivian suffered many injuries including a concussion, sprains, fractures, broken bones—it was a miracle she survived.

The most amazing wonder is how she responded to and returned from this traumatic accident. Within weeks of her return to Dallas, she visited Cooper to ride the stationary bike and to maintain muscle mass and strength. Within eight to nine months, she began to slowly restart her training.

Just a few months ago, Vivian placed second overall in the Esprit de She Duathlon in McKinney, finishing the two-mile run, nine-mile bike and two-mile run in less than one hour with our Fitness Director, Mary Edwards, by her side. Mary said, “This was her way of announcing she was back!”

“Her spirit of perseverance has shined as she has endured the physical and emotional trauma associated with her accident,” Mary said. “Vivian’s workouts before and after her accident were balanced and consistent. I believe this is at the core of what we preach everyday—she truly understands the importance of “exercising most days of the week” and “maintaining healthy weight.”

Aside from Vivian’s time with Cooper, Vivian is a pediatric cardiologist, involved in her church and helps with the local Greek Food Festival each year.

Cas Dunlap, Most Improved of the Year

Cas Dunlap, Most Improved of the Year

Most Improved of the Year: Cas Dunlap

Cooper Fitness Center Member Awards are not new to Cas’ family. In 1995 Cas’ grandmother and grandfather were awarded Mr. and Mrs. Aerobics and Cas’ mother has been a loyal member for more than 30 years.

Cas was introduced to Cooper at a young age when his grandparents brought him for a tour. While attending St. Marks School of Texas, he read Aerobics as required reading and now serves as a highly-respected upper level math instructor at Parish Episcopal School.

Through regular workouts with Professional Fitness Trainer David H. Williams and group exercise classes with Scotty Esquibel, Cas has lost 60 pounds over the past 14 months! Coming in on his own for personal workouts but also joining group exercise classes, it’s clear that Cas’ personal commitment is led by his great work ethic. With his diligent efforts in the gym, Cas has been an inspiration to all who knows him.

“No one works harder than Cas. He trains to the max from the warm up to the cool down,” Scotty said. “Watching his progress has brought me great joy!”

“I just decided to stop NOT exercising and I knew where to start, Cooper,” Cas said.

Well-deserving, Cas is a gentlemen and all-around ambassador for Cooper.

Orville Rogers, Classic of the Year

Orville Rogers, Classic of the Year

Classic of the Year: Orville Rogers

Breaking numerous world running records, including the first man over 90 to break the 10-minute mile, Orville is truly Cooperized! As a patient of Dr. Kenneth Cooper’s from the 70s and a member of Cooper Fitness Center, Orville is an inspiration to all.

Orville discovered Aerobics in a Chicago hotel 47 years ago and has been running ever since recording more than 40,000 miles. Cooper Fitness Center members and teammates recognize him by his famed shorts just as much as his red camaro as he still works out three times per week at 97 years young.

Orville credits Dr. Cooper with saving his life, “at least once, probably twice.”  They share Oklahoma roots and both served their country through the United States Air Force. Orville learned to fly airplanes at 24 and using those skills flying airplanes during the Cold War. 52 years later he took a Russian River Cruise from Leningrad to Moscow during a mission trip.

When introducing Orville at the luncheon this week, his dear friend and member, Harold Cox, said, “I could talk about his 11 world-records, his service in the military or his time as pilot for Braniff, but what has he done recently?” The audience laughed and listened on to hear just last week before the Dallas Marathon, Orville spoke at the American Medical Athletic Association’s Sports Medicine Symposium and is still running more than 5 miles per week, preparing for his next race in March.

Within the many nomination forms for Orville, one member said, “Orville has made mission trips literally to the ends of the earth, delivering airplanes from the factory to missionaries across the oceans and around the globe.”

Orville has truly proved that exercise can reverse the aging process. Dr. Cooper reflected on his relationship with Orville beginning with, “I remember the day I met Orville—March 19, 1972.”

For Dr. Cooper, he said what stands out most about Orville is his discipline—in all that he does, as he referred to Proverbs 13:18, “Discipline Whoever disregards discipline comes to poverty and shame, but whoever heeds correction is honored.”

Congratulations, Orville! We’re looking forward to your future records, in the 100+ age category.

Nick and Luke Maxtone-Graham, Youth of the Year

Nick and Luke Maxtone-Graham, Youth of the Year

Youth of the Year: Nick & Luke Maxtone-Graham

From their first summer camp in 2008, Nick and Luke have been hooked ever since. Meredith Rosson, Cooper Fitness Center’s Youth Programs Director said, “they quickly stood out with their eagerness to learn about sports and nutrition.” From IGNITE! to boxing and tennis to Teen TRX, they have taken advantage of all the Cooper Youth activities they can while excelling in lacrosse at Christ the King.

“When I think of a family to represent Cooper, they are the biggest Cooper Youth ambassadors,” shared Cooper Fitness Center Personal Trainer Paul Nally.

Their character and integrity shined through at an early age. Nick and Luke are well-known for being polite to everyone they meet with excellent manners. Always encouraging other kids in camps and cheering them in support, even if their team lost.

Even too young to account as “student members”, both boys have been actively involved in all programs. With the help of their parents, they learned to value fitness and health at an early age.

Rick and Carol Voirin, Mr. and Mrs. Aerobics

Rick and Carol Voirin, Mr. and Mrs. Aerobics

Mr. & Mrs. Aerobics: Rick & Carol Voirin

Utilizing all that Cooper has to offer, Rick and Carol are truly committed to their health. From group exercise classes to personal training to swimming, they both maintain a consistent exercise schedule—and always decompress at Cooper Spa!

With an active preventive lifestyle, Carol’s cancer was caught early enough to treat. Even through chemotherapy, she practiced good nutrition and a routine exercise regime to care for her body through such a trying time. Group Exercise Instructor and Registered Dietitian Nutritionist at Cooper Clinic, Meridan Zerner said, “Rick and Carol have actively crafted a very balanced lifestyle, both physical and social.”

Together and separately, traveling or working out at their home base at Cooper Fitness Center, Rick and Carol inspire others to exercise on a regular basis.

“They are exemplary members and role models without question,” Meridan expressed.

When presented the award, Rick also said he began running after reading Dr. Cooper’s first book, Aerobics. Truly honored, when thanking Dr. Cooper, Rick referenced an old adage, “you can count the seeds in an apple, but you can never count the number of apples produced from those seeds.”

Following Dr. Cooper’s recommendations of “age fast, age slow—it’s up to you,” it’s clear what they’ve decided to do.

For information about membership at Cooper Fitness Center, learn more about our facility and request a tour today.

Host a Stress-Free Holiday Party

December 12, 2014 Leave a comment

With the holiday season comes the joy of entertaining and the stress of planning the perfect holiday party. The Cooper Hotel Event Team offers useful advice on how to throw a stress-free party this year.

Be of good cheer. Avoid financial woes and stress  by developing a budget. Set a specific dollar amount for how much you are going to spend throughout the holiday season. Remember, your financial situation may be different than your peers, so plan accordingly on how much you can spend on everything from food to your party outfit.

Make your guest list and check it twice. Before you begin to plan the party elements, sit down and take time to make your guest list. As you are deciding on a specific number of people to invite, consider the following questions:

  • How will the number of guests impact my budget?
  • Will my party space fit this many people?
  • Will I need to order additional seating, food or favors?
  • Are children invited to attend?

Once you answer these questions, you should have a better understanding on how many guests to invite.

Deck the hall with boughs of holly. You can create a pleasant ambience by hosting a themed-party or by using holiday décor throughout your house. Follow these trustworthy event planning tips at your next party:

  • Lighting and music are essential elements to set the mood at your party. For a more formal look, you can use lights and candles to light the room. You can also play holiday music to help set the tone.
  • Set up tables in separate rooms of your house. This will allow for your guests to move around and have more space in each area.
  • If you are looking to create your own holiday decorations, try placing the head of your favorite holiday flower in a bowl of water. You can also use websites like Pinterest to find fun, cost-effective decor ideas.

From casual wear to black-tie, give your guests an idea of the appropriate attire for the event. As a courtesy, you should include this information on your party invitation.

Don’t be dashing through your home! While you are planning all of the party festivities, it’s easy to forget the little things  you need at the party. As you begin to plan, write down all of the items and to-dos on one list, so you can confirm you have everything you need ahead of the party.

If children are attending the party, make sure you “kid-proof” your house to avoid any accidents. Remove breakable items that people can easily knock over or run into. You can also purchase a kid-friendly movie or game to keep the kids occupied. This can help make the party more enjoyable for your other guests.

It’s the most wonderful time of the year. That includes for tasty, holiday food! As you invite your guests, it’s important to note if any of your guests have food allergies. From gluten intolerance to nut allergies, make sure you plan your menu accordingly, so everyone can enjoy the party and the food.

  • If your party is informal and you are preparing the food, ask guests to bring their favorite holiday dishes to alleviate the burden of cooking all of the dishes by yourself. Give your guests ideas on what they can bring upfront so there are a variety of dishes at the party.
  • In the event of leftovers, you can box up festive to-go boxes for your guests. This is a nice gesture and also saves you the temptation of eating extra calories after the party.

Follow these tips to help ensure you have a successful, stress-free party.  Enjoy those around you and remember the true meaning of the season.

Do you have out-of-town guests who need a place to stay?  Call 972.386.0306 today to book their stay at Cooper Hotel!

Weddings at Cooper Hotel

By: Savannah Reppart, Events Manager at Cooper Hotel

Wedding season is in full-swing at Cooper Hotel & Conference Center. We host weddings with tented outdoor receptions, indoor receptions and plenty of ceremonies in between. If you are looking for a place for your special day, take a look at some of the memories captured at Cooper Hotel.

Outdoor Receptions

With a 30-acre green campus in the middle of Dallas, outdoor weddings are quite popular here. Last summer we celebrated a beautiful classic wedding with navy linens, gold chiavari chairs and summer floral arrangements.

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With inspiration from Pinterest—we hosted a rustic chic wedding, which has been a popular wedding theme. Decorated with unique burlap accents, crystal chandeliers and sunflowers the wedding was a success.

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One of my favorite weddings to plan, was a traditional Indian ceremony. The stage under the tent captured the bride’s personality with lots of fuchsia and gold accents. The ceiling was fully draped and lit with sparkling lights and was a night to remember for all. See the wedding featured in Bollywood Magazine here.

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Indoor Receptions

With the recent renovations at Cooper Hotel, the calendar is filling up quickly! View photos of the $1 million renovation in progress. Indoor receptions are comfortably planned for up to 250 guests. With full-service catering, Cooper Hotel gives the option to provide your own bar beverages. Cooper Hotel’s exemplary staff hosts the ideal environment to relax and celebrate your day.

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To learn more about weddings at Cooper Hotel, join us at the Dallas Bridal Show on July 26-27 at the Dallas Market Center.

Download Wedding Brochure | View Photos | Follow Cooper Hotel Weddings on Pinterest

BIG Things Happen at Cooper!

Dr. Kenneth H. Cooper, Founder and Chairman, Cooper Aerobics

Have you seen the B&G letters around the city of Dallas? When you stand in between the B&G (like Dr. Cooper here), the six foot tall letters spell BIG! These letters are part of the Dallas Convention & Visitors Bureau (Dallas CVB) branding campaign “Big Things Happen Here!”  Now until July 7, we at Cooper Aerobics have our own set on campus.  Prior to joining the Cooper Aerobics team as Vice President of Marketing and Communications, I worked as a VP for the Dallas CVB on its rebranding campaign. Two years ago we conducted research studies alongside TracyLocke with residents and visitors alike to determine our city’s new tagline. At Dallas’ brand launch event in March of 2013, the life-size letters were part of a four-week social media contest but have gained popularity resulting in more than two dozen sets across the city a year and half later. Thousands of photos have been shared on social media with #DallasBIG. As I made the transition to Cooper Aerobics earlier this year, I quickly found out that BIG things happen every day on the Cooper Aerobics campus.

Cooper Fitness Center completed a $7.5 million renovation in February and the Cooper Hotel is in the final stage of its $1 million renovation.  Just this week, Olympic Bob Sledder Johnny Quinn shared his story to more than 40 youth campers and last week Olympic Speed Skater Jordan Malone joined Summer Camp at Cooper Fitness Center. Our concierge medicine program Cooper Clinic Platinum announced a third physician joining that practice and Cooper Consulting Partners recently hosted a Fit:Business Seminar, just to name a few.

See photos of members, patients, guests, campers and teammates (employees) in the B&G on the Cooper Aerobics campus. Share your spirit to Get Cooperized by taking a photo between the B&G. Share with us on social media with #DallasBIG and @CooperAerobics.

 

Cooper Hotel & Conference Center Begins Renovation

Drs. Kenneth and Tyler Cooper pull up old carpet in Cooper Hotel to bring in the new!

Drs. Kenneth and Tyler Cooper pull up old carpet in Cooper Hotel to bring in the new!

The construction hats have moved from Cooper Fitness Center to Cooper Hotel! A new look is now in progress at Cooper Hotel. As part of Cooper Aerobics Center’s multi-million dollar renovation, we’re refreshing our guest and meeting rooms and public spaces. Blending elegant sophistication with modern touches, guests will stay well at Cooper Hotel. The renovation will be completed this summer.

Nestled in the heart of Cooper Aerobics Center in Dallas, Cooper Hotel & Conference Center is the place to stay well. Cooper Hotel offers spacious rooms with resort amenities and beautiful outdoor grounds for a weekend getaway, wedding or social event. Cooper Hotel also provides a place for business leaders to connect well with nearly 8,000 square feet of gathering space for groups up to 250 and full-service catering with healthy options. We offer corporate travel rates, complete/day meeting packages and multi-day conferences, with wellness lectures, fitness breaks and teambuilding sessions available.

The renovation is refreshing all 61 guest rooms, two of the 900-plus square foot meeting rooms, the outdoor pool area and corridors. The new carpet, paint, lighting and custom furnishings will transform the interiors, blending elegant sophistication with modern touches. Read full media release.

With an expected completion date of summer 2014, guests may obtain the latest updates on the Cooper Hotel renovation on the Cooper Aerobics Facebook page. Providing easy access to all Cooper has to offer, some might say Cooper Hotel is where you come to recuperate. We like to say ReCooperize. Book a room or meeting today!

Taking Fitness on the Road

September 2, 2013 Leave a comment

Do you sometimes feel like you live in a hotel room? Just because we leave town doesn’t mean we have to leave behind our fitness routine. Learn more about simple yet effective ways to stay in shape while on the road. Cooper Fitness Center Professional Fitness Trainer April Swales gives advice for your travels this Labor Day.

It happens on every vacation. We’re getting ready for a trip and as we load our suitcase, we decide that we mustn’t forget our workout clothes. Of course we’re going to get up early each morning, use the hotel workout facility and practice good judgment at each meal. Our intentions are genuine, but reality is a bit more tarnished. Why is it so hard to stay on the healthy track when we travel? Maybe we’re tired. Maybe we don’t feel comfortable working out in a strange place. Or maybe we don’t want to wait in line for limited equipment. Sound familiar?

First and foremost, our expectations need to be realistic. If your travels are taking you away on business and meetings will consume much of your energy, you’re more likely to skip those “good intentions,” i.e. workouts. Dining over business can also be difficult, especially when the meal includes cocktails and/or dessert. This usually leads to guilt, which can be frustrating and counterproductive. Falling off the wagon is not the real problem—the real issue is how long it takes for us to get back on. Allowing ourselves a small break from routine is OK, but we need to be cautious about how long that break is. If you plan to be gone more than a few days, then it’s best to try and get some sort of exercise while you’re away. Your travel exercise mantra should be, “Something is always better than nothing.” The good news is that you’ll only need a few simple tools to stay on task.

One of the easiest exercise travel tools you can own is the basic workout band with handles. They’re inexpensive (around $20 each), easy to find and they travel light. They come in many different resistance levels and often come packaged with a soft nylon door anchor already attached. All you need to add is a door that will shut completely when the anchor is in place. Nearly any exercise performed on a cable in the weight room can also be done with an exercise band and the proper amount of space. The door anchor makes it easy to place and you may secure the band at any level. Since you’ll be correcting your own posture as you exercise (vs. leaning back against the chair on a machine), you’ll be recruiting more muscles and strengthening your trunk. And don’t forget your own body weight plus gravity! Basic movements such as sit ups, push-ups, jumping jacks and squats are a great way to break a sweat and require no equipment at all. Click here to watch quick Exercise Move videos with Personal Trainers and Sports Pros at Cooper Fitness Center.

Anyone who uses applications on their smart phone understands how helpful they can be. There are so many exciting fitness applications out there, many of them free. You can download exercise demonstration photos, nutritional info and eating logs—you can even get an application that can track your movement via GPS and map out a walking or jogging route for you. Record keeping is an excellent way to motivate yourself, even when you’re not on the road.

Many hotels include fitness options for guests. Cooper Hotel offers complimentary access to Cooper Fitness Center for the duration of your stay. There are also options at certain hotels to have basic equipment in your room, free of charge. Marriott International, Inc. and Hilton Hotels Corp. offer in-room fitness options for business travelers. Both chains provide low-tech workout equipment such as mats, free weights and exercise bands. If you’re interested in fitness options at your hotel, ask the hotel concierge.

If you’re fortunate enough to be traveling for fun, try and mix some healthy activities into your itinerary. Wear comfortable shoes and walk whenever possible, try dancing with dinner or maybe hike and enjoy the scenery. The change in your routine will also help you recover from your normal workouts without being sedentary. Your body enjoys change just like your mind, even if what you’re doing is less strenuous than what you’re used to.

Inevitably, we will hit bumps on the road to health and wellness. But traveling should never be a roadblock. Being consistent, although challenging, is not impossible. Even with the best intentions, there will be times when we simply have to take a break. Budgeting your time off wisely with your diet will help. Remember that this lifestyle is a long term commitment and there will be peaks and valleys. Stay positive, stay focused and have fun!

For more information on Cooper Fitness Center services, click here or call 972.233.4832.

I Do! 2012 Wedding Trends

It’s wedding season! Over the years wedding trends come and go. We wanted to get in on the latest wedding styles from Cooper Hotel Conference Center & Spa Events Manager, Savannah Reppart.

Non-Traditional Bouquet: Savannah’s first trend she’s seeing this season is something other than traditional flowers. Many brides are making their bouquet out of vintage brooches. Not only is this creative, but they last a lifetime.

Pretty in Pink: Pink and pastels have made a huge come back this season. Other colors Savannah notices more of are off-white, cream and champagne. She does note that fall wedding colors might change.

Bridal Fashion: Now on to one of the best parts of any wedding, the bride’s dress! Lace and Victorian styles seem to be what’s happening this year. We can likely accredit this to last spring’s Royal Wedding.

Table Décor: Centerpieces are becoming more eccentric and vintage, with no two looking alike. The trend seems to be different heights of flowers, incorporated with vases, photos, frames and candles. Savannah loves this idea, especially for outdoor ceremonies.

Treats: Savannah has most definitely seen it all, but the most popular right now? Tiered cupcake displays. Now that’s what we call a good wedding cake. Cooper’s own Christine Witzsche had an ice cream bar from her favorite local ice cream shop at her wedding. Both options are easy for the guests and allow many different flavors.

Non-Traditional Food: Candy bars, dessert tables, action stations, build-your-own, sushi…basically if it’s bite-size and fun, it’s a great reception choice. Brides are getting creative in this arena. Shot glasses are now being

A beautiful outdoor setting at Cooper Hotel. Photo taken by Don Mamone.

used for “shrimp shooters,” “soup shots” and “mini mousses.”

One with Nature: Outdoor ceremonies and receptions this summer have become increasingly popular. This let’s the bride become more creative with a larger area and allows for more or less formality. In fact, Cooper Hotel Conference Center & Spa’s unique and luscious landscape is perfect for the ceremony, reception and photos! Check out these gorgeous photos from weddings on our campus. Being in Texas, the weather allows for outdoor wedding to go through October.

For more information about hosting your big day at Cooper Hotel Conference Center & Spa, click here or call 972.490.9167.