Club Newsletter

Managers Corner

Think Pink!

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Think Pink!

Breast Cancer Awareness Month shouldn’t be the only time of the year we openly and freely talk about the importance of breast health. Whether you personally love ‘em, hate ‘em or don’t care about them, chances are someone you know and/or love will be affected by breast cancer in her (or his) life. With over 1 in 8 women being diagnosed during their lifetime, it’s time we all pay attention.

While the 5-year survival rate for breast cancer is a 90% and the 10-year is 83%, it is the second most common cause of cancer death, after lung cancer. Monthly self-exams and early detection can extend, if not save, a life. Cancer is not a death sentence and breast cancer treatments are becoming more advanced each year. This October, or any month of the year you choose, take time to educate yourself on preventative measures for yourself and those you love. When it hits one of eight women you know, be ready to jump in to help.

Once a breast cancer diagnosis is given, if affects the entire family. Grandmothers, mothers, sisters and daughters are often genetically linked by breast cancer. When one family member is diagnosed, the concern is about her but the worry ripples throughout her bloodline. Breast cancer screening is available and should be considered for women forty years old and older.

Exercise is Good for the Girls

Recently researchers at the University of Illinois, along with collaborators at Digital Artefacts in Iowa City, Iowa, and Northeastern University in Boston, studied the link between fatigue, physical activity and the performance on cognitive tasks in nearly 300 breast cancer survivors.

Their research found that cancer patients and survivors have a weapon to fight fatigue and "chemo brain" at their disposal - a quick and brisk walk.

"The data suggest that being more physically active could reduce two of the more commonly reported symptoms in breast cancer survivors: fatigue and cognitive impairment," said study leader Edward McAuley, a professor of kinesiology and community health at Illinois. "Most people think, 'If I exercise, I'll become tired.' In our study, exercise actually was associated with reduced fatigue, which in turn was associated with better cognitive function."

Memory problems or shortened attention spans are two common cognitive impairments that cancer patients and survivors often share. These symptoms are thought to be similar to decline due to aging. Past research at University of Illinois had explored the effect of physical fitness on age-related cognitive decline, which led the researchers to test whether cancer survivors would respond similarly to exercise.

"Other studies of cancer survivors have relied on small samples of cancer survivors, and used self-reporting measures of physical activity and cognitive function, which can be very biased," said postdoctoral researcher Diane Ehlers, the first author of the study, which is published in the journal Breast Cancer Research and Treatment. "What makes our study novel is that we had objective measures for both physical activity and cognitive performance, and a nationwide sample of breast cancer survivors."

Digital Artefacts in Iowa City is the developer of the commercial neuroscience app BrainBaseline and they custom tailored an iPad app for this study. The app included questionnaires and activities to measure attention, memory and multitasking skills. The researchers sent each participant an accelerometer to also keep track of daily physical activity. 

"We found that higher levels of daily moderate-to-vigorous physical activity were associated with better performance on the cognitive tasks measuring attention, memory and multitasking," Ehlers said. "What was notable was that physical activity's effect on cognitive performance was mediated by fatigue. This provides evidence that physical activity interventions targeting fatigue in cancer patients and survivors might provide promising models for improving cognitive function as well."

The researchers are now planning to conduct further studies to conduct an iPhone-based study and focusing on diverse populations of breast cancer survivors.

"The message for cancer patients and survivors is, get active!" Ehlers said. "Even if it's 10-minute bouts of brisk walking. It's not a magical cure-all, but we've seen many benefits of physical activity for cancer patients and survivors."

Our Yearly Reminder!

Each year we also like to bring attention to the other causes and issues honored in October. Although October is most commonly known as National Breast Cancer Awareness Month, other important topics and diseases are also recognized this month. Looking through this list, we all know someone whose life has changed because of something here and understand the importance education and awareness brings.

  • National Down Syndrome Awareness Month
  • SIDS Awareness Month
  • Spina Bifida Awareness Month (promoted by the Spina Bifida Association)
  • Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Month
  • Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Day (15th)
  • Domestic Violence Awareness Month
  • Mental Illness Awareness Week (first full week of October)
  • World Mental Health Day (10th)
  • Bone and Joint Health National Awareness Week (12th-20th)
  • National Health Education Week (third full week of October)
  • International Infection Prevention Week (third full week of October)
  • Respiratory Care Week (last full week of October)
  • Healthy Lung Month
  • Red Ribbon Week (last week of October)
  • Eye Injury Prevention Month
  • Home Eye Safety Month
  • Health Literacy Month

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Club News


Adult Swim Clinics in October
Improve your technique & Endurance

Do you want to improve your swim stroke or endurance? Training for a triathlon? Let our certified swim coaches help you!
We’re now offering Adult Swim Clinics twice a month. Our October clinics are October 8 & 22 from 4:00-6:00 pm.
Clinics include a training plan, drills, and techniques to improve efficiency.
Beginner to advanced programs.* Bring a friend!
*Must be able to swim 25 yards
Email Heather at for questions

October Flick ‘n’ Float! Catch “The Great Pumpkin” at PLF
Drop off the kids for an evening of fun at the Prairie Life Flick & Float! Swim, eat, play, and a movie!
When: Saturday October 21st from 6:00pm-9:30pm
Movie: It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown
Price: $20.00/ Member $30.00/ Daymember
Age: 4 years and up
Bring a blanket and pillow to relax during the movie. Parents, please send a change of clothes for your child to change into after swimming.
All staff are lifeguards and swim coaches.

Email Heather at for questions.

Trick or Treat!
Join Prairie Life for Trick or Treat October 30th

Join us on October 30 and our Youth Services staff will take the kids around the building for a little Trick or Treating! The management team and many of the staff will be in costume and have treat stations set up. The theme this year is Wizard of Oz!
Feel free to tag along or you can go get your workout in, attend a class, swim some laps – we’ve got you covered.

Let’s Put YOU in the Spotlight
Our Members are our Focus
Each of us follows a different path to fitness but it starts with a situation or circumstance that made us want to make a change. You came to Prairie Life Fitness to make that change and we are honored that you chose us.
We have a renewed focus on the ‘why’ behind your fitness journey and helping you find the motivation to push through to your goals. As part of that focus, we’d like to highlight some of the incredible stories of achievement that we hear every day.
How has your decision to make a change affected your life? If you’d like to share your story, contact

Employee Spotlight: Laine Alexander
Swim Coach & Manager-in-Charge

Laine has been a member of Prairie Life Fitness since he was 12 years old when he started taking swim lesson from Coach Flynt. 

He became a volunteer coach under Flynt’s direction and soon became a swim lesson instructor, swim team coach, and lifeguard. He is now the Manager-in-Charge on weekends, continuing his professional growth with PLF. 

Laine loves the family environment of Prairie Life and is proud to be giving back to the community where his swimming career started. He credits PLF for helping him develop patience and an understanding of business practices and has loved the experience. 

Laine will be leaving on October 17th to ship out for Air Force basic training where he hopes to become an AC130 gunner. 

We want to wish Laine the best of luck! A heartfelt thank you for your dedication and hard work here at Prairie Life. You have given us your best and we are grateful for your willingness to serve our country. 


Manager's Corner


Show You Care, Be Aware!

Screaming fans, tailgating, falling leaves, cooler temps…Trick or Treating! What’s not to love about October? Hockey and basketball are back, football is in full swing, and baseball gets serious. The kids shouldn’t be causing too much trouble in school yet and the weather gives us a break from the summer heat. October may be a perfect month.

October is also the month when it’s acceptable to talk about “ta-tas” in polite company! Now that we have your attention, breast cancer is no joking matter and is an issue that both women and men need to educate themselves about. In this month‘s newsletter, read about a new study that proves the health benefits of physical fitness in the fight against breast cancer…and perhaps against all cancers.

To do our part for Breast Cancer Awareness Month, your PLF family is planning several events including a month-long Burpee-a-thon and several charity workouts to raise donations for breast cancer research.

You don’t want to miss the announcements of these and all our other events, so add us to your contacts to make sure you’re getting the word! Also make sure to follow us on Facebook and Instagram for great content to help you meet your health and fitness goals, including trainer tips, recipes, and articles.

Happy Halloween!

Looking forward to a great month,


Donovan Manley, General Manager

PS. Remember to take your workout on the go with the PerFit App! Download it today on the App Store.



Perfit exercise of the month


Scare those calories away with this month's PerFit workout!

Click above to see a video of our exercise of the month and click below to download PerFit, available on iPhone!



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