Make us your home page
Instagram

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Staying fit at Clearwater Fire & Rescue's Fire/EMS Safety, Health and Survival Week

CLEARWATER

For a dozen firefighters at the Clearwater Fire Training Facility on Wednesday afternoon, the workout was simple.

A minute of push-ups. Then, planks and squats. Finally, body-rows, and then back to push-ups.

"Four, three, two, one — exercise!" yelled firefighter Anthony Gomillion, the de-facto drill sergeant for the workout.

Easier said than done. One man groaned when he lifted out of his last push-up.

Another grimaced, his arms quivering uncontrollably, as he held the plank position.

Rivers of sweat streamed down their necks.

Staying in shape is hard work — even for firefighters.

The high-intensity workout was part of the Clearwater Fire & Rescue's Fire/EMS Safety, Health and Survival Week, an annual event in which firefighters around the world participate in workshops and training sessions to learn techniques for staying safe on the job.

This year's theme is "Fit for Duty," and on Wednesday, dozens of Clearwater firefighters went through a rotation of tutorials on nutrition, weight management, safe weight-lifting techniques and tips for staying fit.

"We're not going to put them on an Ironman course with this workout," said Doug Swartz, assistant chief for health and safety. "But these workouts will help them do their jobs safely, without injuries."

What people often don't realize is that firefighters need help with sticking to an exercise routine, eating healthy and keeping their weight down, just like the rest of us, said Gomillion, the head peer fitness trainer at Clearwater Fire & Rescue.

Back, knee and shoulder injuries are especially common among firefighters, Gomillion said, and firefighters account for more than their fair share of workers' compensation losses in the city of Clearwater. Proper weight lifting could cut down on those types of injuries, he said.

Peer fitness trainers — firefighters with personal training certification — demonstrated a series of weight-lifting moves intended to mimic real-life tasks that firefighters perform daily. To prevent injury from lifting equipment bags and pulling on fire hoses, practice lifting dumbbells and swinging kettle balls, Gomillion said.

The tutorial on nutrition featured more back-to-basics tips for weight management: Cut down on fat. Stop snacking late at night. Drink lots of water.

"Because of this job, there are a lot of things working against us in terms of sleeping well, eating well and maintaining a healthy lifestyle," Swartz said.

Unpredictable schedules and all-night shifts don't exactly make for a reliable fitness routine and time to cook healthy foods, he said.

Case in point: A couple of men walked into the training room halfway through the weight-lifting demonstration. They apologized for being late — they had just returned from responding to a call.

Swartz brushed off their apologies: "Don't worry about it — you probably got in just as much cardio."

Martine Powers can be reached at mpowers@sptimes.com or (727) 445-4224.

Staying fit at Clearwater Fire & Rescue's Fire/EMS Safety, Health and Survival Week 06/23/10 [Last modified: Wednesday, June 23, 2010 8:04pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Trump reveals that he didn't record Comey after all

    Politics

    WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump declared Thursday he never made and doesn't have recordings of his private conversations with ousted former FBI director James Comey, ending a monthlong guessing game that he started with a cryptic tweet and that ensnared his administration in yet more controversy.

    President Donald Trump said Thursday that he didn’t record his conversations with James Comey.
  2. Lightning fans, don't get attached to your first-round draft picks

    Lightning Strikes

    CHICAGO — When Lightning GM Steve Yzerman announces his first-round pick tonight in the amateur draft at No. 14, he'll invite the prospect onto the stage for the once-in-a-lifetime photo opportunity.

    Tampa Bay Lightning left wing Jonathan Drouin (27) eludes  Montreal Canadiens left wing Phillip Danault (24) during the second period of Wednesday???‚??„?s (12/28/16) game between the Tampa Bay Lightning and the Montreal Canadiens at the Amalie Arena in Tampa.
  3. Investigation Discovery TV show profiles 2011 Landy Martinez murder case

    Crime

    The murder of a St. Petersburg man will be featured this week on a new true crime series Murder Calls on Investigation Discovery.

    Jose Adame sits in a Pinellas County courtroom during his 2016 trial and conviction for first-degree murder. Adame was convicted of first-degree murder last year for torturing and then executing his boyfriend as he pleaded for his life in 2011. Now it will be featured in a new true crime series Murder Calls on Investigation Discovery. The episode will air on June 26 at 9 p.m. [DOUGLAS R. CLIFFORD   |   Times]
  4. Uhuru mayoral candidate Jesse Nevel protests exclusion from debate

    Blogs

    ST. PETERSBURG — Jesse Nevel, the International People’s Democratic Uhuru Movement candidate for mayor, on Thursday demanded that he be allowed to participate in a July 25 televised debate between incumbent Mayor Rick Kriseman and challenger Rick Baker.

    Mayoral candidate Jesse Nevel holds a news conference outside the headquarters of the Tampa Bay Times on Thursday to protest his exclusion from the mayoral debate. Nevel is a member of the International People’s Democratic Uhuru Movement.
  5. Lightning GM Steve Yzerman also has top-9 wing on his wish list

    Lightning Strikes

    CHICAGO — Much has been made about the Lightning's interest in bolstering its blue line, even after last week's acquisition of defense prospect Mikhail Sergachev.

    Tampa Bay Lightning general manager Steve Yzerman gestures as he speaks to the media about recent trades during a news conference before an NHL hockey game against the Carolina Hurricanes Wednesday, March 1, 2017, in Tampa, Fla. The Lightning, over the past few days, have traded goaltender Ben Bishop to the Los Angeles Kings, forward Brian Boyle to the Toronto Maple Leafs, and forward Valtteri Filppula to the Philadelphia Flyers. (AP Photo/Chris O'Meara) TPA101