December 7, 2017
Joe Wiles runs fitness boot camp training from his Marlboro home. John Meore/Poughkeepsie Journal
Joe Wiles is known in Marlboro as the man who brought fitness to town.
A chiropractor turned recreation guru and personal trainer and lifetime sports coach, Wiles has been transforming Marlboro’s attitude toward health and fitness from his own garage.
Marlboro had its fifth annual Marlboro Fit Day July 1, with a 5K and kids’ Fun Run —started by Wiles and friends.
“The goal of Fit Day is to encourage a lifetime of fitness,” Wiles said. “That’s why we honor our oldest runners first when handing out awards. No other event does this.”
Wiles, 44, has been working up a sweat since he was a kid. He was born and raised in Queens, and his father owned and ran a large karate school, where Wiles learned the rewards of coaching others early on.
“My father has had a martial arts school for almost 50 years,” Wiles said “At the age of 71 he still competes with much younger men. He has always been my role model when it comes to living a healthy lifestyle.”
To continue the pursuit of helping people improve their bodies, Wiles became a chiropractor. He was enrolled in a Masters of Sports and Exercise Science program at Life University in Marietta, Georgia.
“While I was there I had a running injury from overtraining,” Wiles said. “After failed attempts at recovery, and no desire to be treated with pain medications, I decided to have the injury treated by students at the chiropractic school. The results were immediate and life-changing. That was the point I decided the field of chiropractic was where I could have the biggest impact on the health of people.”
Wiles has been a doctor of chiropractic since 2005.
Wiles’ wife, Carla, also has the love of good health hardwired into her, working as a civilian general practitioner who cares for veterans at Castle Point. Their kids, Lily, 15, and Jayden 9, are both blessed with their father’s athletic abilities.
“I have to give so much credit to Carla,” Wiles said. “She has been my backbone and so supportive of me doing all this, with my hours and not being home. I just couldn’t do this without the support and encouragement of my family.”
When the Marlboro Middle School lost its modified sports programs due to budget cuts in 2013-2014, Wiles started an after-school running club. Wiles has also been coaching Marlboro Youth Basketball League for more than a decade, as well as playing in the men’s 40 and over league.
Wiles began to organize adult group fitness classes while practicing chiropractic care in his Marlboro-based office, soon enough chairing the Town of Marlborough’s recreation department. Wiles created fun, free group fitness “boot camp” classes for all levels. “Marlboro Fit Club” started quietly in 2008 with less than 20 people working out together at the town park, and swapping diet tips and supportive dialogue in Wiles’ Facebook group.
In 2016, Wiles transitioned his focus exclusively to personal training, and took his Boot Camp to his garage.
“With patients, chronic aches and pains were usually the result of a life of neglect when it comes to health and fitness,” Wiles said. “More often than not, the long-term solution required the implementation of physical activities tailored to their specific needs. I have a passion for creating programs with far bigger goals than just those resulting in immediate success to get someone out of pain.”
Today, the group has grown and evolved into the Hudson Valley Fit Club, which has 2,200 members from around the tri-county region. Wiles runs several affordable Boot Camps a week out of his garage and driveway.
“The classes are comprised of all levels of fitness,” said Wiles, who trains everyone from sedentary octogenarians to active military personnel. “The focus is on pushing people to achieve more than they believe is possible. We have a philosophy: You’re allowed to say the word ‘can’t,’ as long as you follow it with ‘yet.’ ‘I can’t do 19 push ups — yet.’ ‘I can’t jump that high — yet.’ ” “Yet,” Wiles insists, implies hope, which he said is a huge motivator in the group.
“Mary is a personal training client that has lost over 100 pounds,” Wiles said. “(On a recent weekend) she ran her first-ever 5K race. Her ‘can’t’ had reached her ‘yet’.”
Witnessing change is what inspires Wiles, and his clients. A client diagnosed with Parkison’s recently began boot camp training.
“One particular exercise was a 24-inch box jump,” Wiles said. “Her first reaction, ‘I can’t do that.’ ‘Can’t’ persisted, but I wouldn’t give up on her, and I would never allow her to give up on herself.” After several months of training, Wiles said, she did it. Again, and then again, and again. “This breakthrough has led to more breakthroughs,” he said. “Not only for her, but for those that see what she has been able to accomplish.”
Wiles is also doing personal training and teaching classes at Crunch Fitness in Poughkeepsie: Tread and Shed, Absolution, Camp Crunch and Bodyweb with TRX straps.
In his spare time, which is minimal, Wiles loves to vegetable garden and play with web design.
“Web design allows me to express my creativity, similar to the ever-evolving workouts I enjoy creating,” he said, adding that he loves fresh garden veggies, too.
Carrie Jones Ross is a freelance writer. Contact her at email@example.com
Visit wilesfitness.org for more information
Chair squats – Every hour stand up and sit back down 20 times. When sitting, never fully rest in the chair.
Calf raises – You don’t have to stand up to stand on your toes. Stay seated and lift the heels as high as you can.
Biceps press – Place both hands, palms up, under your desk and press upward holding the contraction and then relaxing. Repeat 10-15 times.
Shoulder press – Sit in an armed chair and raise your arms to the side. Hold the contraction for a second or two and then relax. Repeat 10-15 times.
Ab crunch – Place both hands on the chair and lift the knees as high as you can while keep the back straight against the seat. Hold at the top for a second or two and repeat as many times as you can.
Source: Joe Wiles
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